Jefferson County, Colorado
Genealogy and History
A Part of the Genealogy Trails Group
Calvary Church is a substantial brick edifice built
in the Gothic style of architecture, with an open timber roof, and
windows of stained glass. The Rev. Wm. J. Lynd is rector of the parish,
which was organized about four years ago.
Jarvis Hall is a collegiate school, located about a
mile from Golden, on the road to Denver. this institution is designed to
prepare boys for college, and to fit them for the business pursuits of
life. It has three departments: grammar, classical and scientific. The
building is of brick, eighty-three by thirty-three feet, three stories,
with a tower. On a line with the hall and about 100 feet from it,
another brick edifice, and of similar style of architecture, forty by
thirty feet, having three stories, with a tower, and is to be used for
purposes connected with a school of mines. The location of this college
is not surpassed for beauty and grandeur of natural scenery, and for
purity of atmosphere, by any institution in the land. With hills and
mountains within easy reach, it affords to the boys unequaled
facilities for that physical exercise which develops the
muscles and promotes health. To boys who are affected with bronchial
trouble, or disease of the lungs, in in its incipient state, or
asthmatic complaints, this school affords the rare opportunity of
securing the recovery of health, without sacrificing the educational
period of life. Jarvis Hall has an able faculty, of which Bishop Randall
is the head.
St. Paul's Church, Central City, was organized in the
early settlement of the Territory. The church has been recently
enlarged. A parish school is maintained under the supervision of the
rector, the Rev. Jos. M. Turner. Measures have been taken to establish a
hospital under the auspices of the church.
As usual, the earliest history of Colorado found the
pioneering Methodist preacher, whose seed-sowing has produced the
harvest of a large and flourishing church. We give a few historic and
statistical items. The Kansas conferences organized a district here
early in the settlement of the Territory, and fully supplied the general
demands of the work with preachers. In proper succession, and with
commendable increase, the work went on in that form until in July 1863,
Rev. Bishop Ames organized the Rocky Mountain conference (the name was
changed in 1864 to the Colorado conference). The preaching force
appointed that year was composed of two presiding elders, and six
preachers in charge of circuits and stations. In the changes since then,
all the names of that list have disappeared from the present list of
appointments but one, John L. Dyer, familiarly known as Father Dyer.
This old storm-hardened veteran labors as heroically and successfully as
ever for his Divine Master.
Societies were organized at Denver, Golden, Boulder,
Central, Black Hawk, South Park, Blue River, California Gulch, Colorado
City and Pueblo, with a membership of 273. Ten Sunday schools were also
reported, with an average attendance of 529. One church worth $300, and
one parsonage worth $400, were reported. The little chapel in which this
conference was held, was situated on the west bank of Cherry creek,
facing Larimer street. It was carried away in the flood of 1864.
Seven annual sessions of the Colorado conference have
been held, with a steady increase of preachers and members from year to
year. At its organization, only Colorado Territory made its limits, but
now Wyoming and New Mexico are embraced within its boundaries. It is our
intention, however, only to make a statement of Colorado Methodism in
There are few settlements of any importance that are
not included in the circuit system of this church, and few country
school-houses in which the Methodist itinerant does not occasionally or
regularly preach. Societies and Sunday schools are now organized in
every considerable settlement. The membership reported at the last
session of the conference, held in Pueblo, June 1870, was as follows: In
full communion 540; on probation 173; total 713; 25 Sunday schools, with
an attendance of 1647; 14 churches worth $76,000; 5 parsonages worth $6,100.
We give now, for the general information of our
readers, and for the special convenience of strangers and new comers, an
outline of each society's history where church buildings have been erected:
A neat brick chapel was built her in 1868, under the pastorate of Rev.
B.T. Vincent, costing a little upwards of $3000. Its plan, as that of
Black Hawk, is to be build upon at some future day, the present
structure being so arranged as to be the lecture room of the final
structure. A very fine building is in contemplation, and, with the
present promise of rapid growth of Golden, it is hoped the entire
building will be, ere long, completed. The pastors here have been B.C.
Dennis, O.A. Willard, D.W. Scott, W.M. Smith, B.T. Vincent, P. Peterson,
E.C. Brooks, and F.C. Millington, the present pastor, lately transferred
from the State of New York. The membership is about 50; Sunday school
This is a farming region, about 6 miles north of Golden City. A neat
little frame church was built here under the pastorate of Rev. Jesse
Smith, costing about $1800. This is the first strictly rural church ever
built in Colorado. The pastors of this circuit have been W.M. Smith,
D.W. Scott, Jesse Smith and G.W. Swift, the present pastor.
Before the organization of the Territory the
churches, in what is now Colorado, were under the jurisdiction of the
Right Rev. Bishop Miege, of Leavenworth, Kan. Bishop Miege transferred
his jurisdiction to Bishop Lamy, of Santa Fe, who retained the charge
until 1863, at which time Bishop Joseph P. Machebeuf, formerly Vicar
General of the Territory, was appointed Bishop of Colorado and Utah, and
assumed the charge, which he now retains.
In 1869, Bishop Machebeuf and Father John B. Raverdy,
came to the Territory as missionaries. They both had charge of the whole
Territory for nearly three years, without any clerical assistance. When
they came to Denver there was no church, but there was one in course of
erection, which was soon completed and occupied.
In Golden City a neat frame church was erected in
1866, on a fine block generously donated by Hon. W.M. Loveland and
Judge Johnson. Preparations are also made for schools,
The Rocky Mountain Directory and Colorado Gazetteer for 1871,
transcribed by J.S.
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