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First Baptist Church, Douglas
 
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The following information is taken from the Baptist Church publication "Directory of the First Baptist Church, Douglas, Arizona, 1906". The directory has pictures and advertisements related to Douglas in 1906 and will not be duplicated for this article. The Pastor, at that time, was T. F. Mc Courtney who resided at 182 Fourth Street in Douglas, Arizona.

The Baptists were the first to organize a church in Douglas. Reverend J. L. Limes, the missionary supporter for Arizona, visited the new town of Douglas in the Spring of 1902. His report, at the Convention which met in Phoenix, in March of that year, led to active work being started at Douglas. Brethren Scott and Elliott, of Phoenix, organized the Church May 9, 1902, in the little frame school house which then stood just west of the Calumet Hospital grounds. [This location is in the same block as the present Elks Club located on 10th Street.] A few of the brethren in Phoenix gave the money and a tent was purchased, which was pitched a little north and west of the present YMCA building. [The west end of Tenth Street.] Because of the dust, the first meetings were held in the school house. Being the first on the ground, the present location for our church house was selected on the block set apart for churches. With the help of Reverend George H. Brewer, the corresponding secretary of the A.B.H.M.S., the plans were drawn and steps taken looking toward a permanent house of worship. Reverend William Pearce was chosen by the Missionary Board to be the first pastor, and he served one year. In March 1903, the present pastor came and found five persons who claimed to be members of the church. As there was no place of meeting, a tent, 24 feet by 48 feet, was placed on the lots which had been given for our building. Here the church worshipped for two years, while their house was building, and the congregation grew to more than 100 members. On the third of August, 1905, when the new house was about completed, a fire from a storm destroyed most of the woodwork. Then for two months, the meetings were held in the undertaking parlors of Mr. A. A. Ferguson. In December the house was again ready for use, and we are now ready to complete the house by placing the pews. The dedication is expected to take place in June. 

During the present pastorate, 179 members have been received; 69 have been baptized. The present membership numbers 142. The foundation of the church house was laid in August, 1904. The church owes much to Reverend George H. Brewer and the American Baptist Home Mission Society for help rendered, and to many others who have so kindly and generously helped in the great work of planting the church.

Transcribed by Patt Bennett


 
 

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