History of our trinity lutheran church

1870 - 1995

On January 30, 1870, ten families, intent on preaching and teaching the pure Word of God, organized Evangelical Lutheran Trinity Congregation of the Unaltered Augsburg Confession. Believing that a Christian Day School was a necessity in the building of a Christian congregation, they also established Trinity School. At first, services and classes were conducted in a store building at 8th and Gaines Streets.

In March of 1870, a site was purchased at 1036 W. 5th Street for $500, and the first small combination church and school building, with an attached parsonage, was erected at a cost of $2,129. This church was dedicated on June 12, 1870. Services were conducted in German, and Danish services were introduced in 1878. Adjacent property was purchased in 1881 (including a separate parsonage) and two years later, on July 15, 1883, the second church, fronting on Myrtle Street, was dedicated.

The original church became the first permanent school structure, but when school enrollment reached 67 in 1913, the congregation secured property at 7th and Vine Streets. A new school building was dedicated here on December 31, 1916.

Seven years later, in December of 1923, three lots at 15th and Marquette were purchased as a site for a new church building. A resolution to build was passed in April 1924, and the new church was dedicated on December 12, 1926.

The need to grow remained. In July 1950, 40 acres of land were acquired at Marquette Street and West Central Park Avenue. Of this original tract, 15 acres were retained for the present church site. During this period of physical change, the name of our congregation also was changed on January 20, 1957, to Trinity Lutheran Church.

Once again, church and school would be at the same location. The new educational wing was dedicated May 3, 1959, and included nine classrooms, an auditorium with 450 seating capacity, general purpose meeting room and a fully-equipped kitchen. Dedication of the church took place September 9, 1962, This section, in addition to the church, included church offices, Trinity Hall (basement), and a second fully-equipped kitchen. The entire structure was erected at a cost of $650,000.

As the church continued to grow, so did the school. In the fall term of 1977 kindergarten was added to the class structure followed by preschool in 1978. By 1984 another building program was underway. This resulted in the present Activity Center wing which includes a fully equipped kitchen and a two-court gymnasium, that also serves as a banquet room or an auditorium to accommodate over 600. The remodeled former school gym became new classrooms, a library, and science room. The extensive remodeling of the administrative wing included the addition of a third pastor's office. A new parking lot with an entrance off Marquette Street made the church and school more accessible and eased the flow of traffic. This facility was dedicated on September 28, 1986.

1989 was a memorable year for Trinity. In May, our school was honored by the U. S. Department of Education with the National Award for Excellence in Education. In November, 1989, firmly believing that "In Christ We Can!" Trinity embarked on a 36-month capital stewardship program. The Lord blessed our efforts. By December 1992 the debt of $850,000 had been paid off, with an additional $172,000 in reserve for further expansion. This has become the seed for scheduled improvements in our anniversary year, 1995.