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John Werner is the winner this week.

The Orofino Methodist Church is the answer for our 46th Week of Orofino History Trivia, a feature to celebrate Orofino's history and heritage. Watch for the historical information and photo.

According to A Century of History For Orofino-Peck & Cavendish Methodist Churches, the beginnings of the organization were at the turn of the century. About 1900, the first Sunday School in Orofino was organized. Meetings were held in the schoolhouse which at the time was just west of where Orofino Builders Supply is now.

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Two families, those of Mr. And Mrs. Ellis Small and Mr. and Mrs. S.A. Dunlap worked to raise funds for materials. The Smalls were Methodist and the Dunlaps Presbyterian. Mr. Mann, a Presbyterian organizer, came to Orofino and visited the families of children that had been contacted and showed interest in the Sunday School. He supplied literature temporarily until the group could acquire their own.

The Sunday School met in the schoolhouse until one night it "mysteriously" was relocated in the Glenwood area of town. The church immediately began meeting in Moody Hall. Here G.W. Moody, an early day judge, had purchased a two-story building. The first floor was his store and the second a community hall. It was located at 416 Johnson near the bottom of what is now called Canada Hill.

In December 1901 the group took the step to become an incorporated church of the Methodist congregation. The area was growing as Clearwater was formed in 1911 and Orofino designated as the county seat. The growth and development in the area gave birth to the dream of having their own building for a church. C.C. Fuller, who homesteaded and platted the original site of Orofino, donated the land for the building and S.A. Dunlap filled and leveled it. William Shriver planned and supervised the building of the church which had mostly donated labor. The first church building in Orofino, it was located at on Canada Hill and completed in 1904.

Orofino continued to grow and in 1910 the congregation determined that they needed to move to a new site. In 1912, the old church was sold for $1,250 to Effie Fuller when the congregation moved into their new building at 337 College Ave. That structure burned in 1938, but the people "rose to the occasion" and by 1939 had erected the present brick church.

John Werner, after sending in the correct answer, shared that he grew up in the "new" church. The first couple married in the new church was his Aunt Gladys Bryant who wed Gilbert Doll on Aug. 14, 1940 in the new (current) Methodist Church that replaced the one burned down. She is still living in Snohomish, WA near her daughter, Barbara Doll Keithly and family.

From the remembrances in the history book, the Methodist Church has been central to the lives of many present and past citizens of Orofino. It has served as a community gathering place for special events, weddings, funerals. This weekend the church is sponsoring an indoor yard sale to help raise funds for an elevator, another change to support community needs.

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is available for sale at the Clearwater Historical Museum, which as it turns out sits across a parking lot from the Methodist Church on College Ave.

(The above information was used by permission of one of A Century of History For Orofino-Peck & Cavendish Methodist Churches writers, Margaret Fine.)

Photos: Top--Orofino Methodist Church burning in 1938. (Photo courtesy of Clearwater Historical Museum) Second--Orofino United Methodist Church

Monday: They believed.

Tuesday: They built.

Wednesday: They met at various places before constructing their own building.

Thursday: Flames leapt into the sky.

Trivia Archives

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Window on the Clearwater
P.O. Box 2444
Orofino, ID 83544
Fax: 208-476-3407