Presbyterian Church History

From 1887 to 1923, a Methodist congregation flourished in Cooperstown.  It is reported that their church building was built across from the Palace Hotel because it was too far for persons living at the hotel to walk to the Congregational Church!

A record book for this Methodist group reveals that some pastors enlivened the statistics with their own side comments.  One such comment (in a slightly serious vein) reports that the marriage of Graham McCulloch and Edith M. Erickson on March 3, 1905, was "a joy in the heart and a true friend in the pocket with $10.00 - true love is unrivaled happiness.  €œIn a more humorous vein, the Reverend H. Styles Harris reports that the marriage of William A. McCulloch and Mary Hufteland on June 28, 1905, was "good for the preacher - $20.00.

No local records have been found of the Congregational Church except that of the joining of this group with the Methodists in 1923 in order to form a Presbyterian Church.  On April 25, 1924, the former Congregational Church transferred their building to the Presbyterians.  The trustees of the Congregational Church at that time were W. M. Ayrea, C. L. Cooper, M. D. Wheatley and E. S. Hamilton.  On August 4 of that same year, officers for the Presbyterian Church were elected.  They were:

W. M. Ayrea, president and

F. B. King, secretary.

It wasn't until June 17, 1929, that the former Methodist church building was transferred to the Presbyterians.  This building was used as a social hall for several years.  In 1940, the Presbyterians sold the building used for worship services (the former Congregational church building) to the Roman Catholic congregation.  The social hall was then converted to use as a center for worship and for social events.

The pastors of the Presbyterian Church have been as follows: 

The Reverends Curtis, L. C. Cooley, C. C. Converse, W. R. Radliff, W. S. Henderson, Harvey Senecal, Robert Schurr, and Robert Maharry.  These ministers also served the Presbyterian churches in Sharon and Hannaford.

August of 1974 saw a new era begin for the Cooperstown United Presbyterian Church.  They formed a yoke with the Sharon and the Courtenay United Presbyterian Churches to call a team of pastors, the Reverends James R. and Faye A. Fedlam.  They are husband and wife as well as being co-pastors and are the first such team in North Dakota churches.  Both are graduates of Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.  James hails from New Jersey, and Faye grew up in Kansas.  Jim is third generation Hungarian.  Faye claims the British Isles many generations back.  The possibilities and the challenges for this new yoke and for this team are just beginning.  The future awaits!

Source: Griggs County History 1879 - 1976 Page 50

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