United Presbyterian Church

In 1886, Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Sinclair were instrumental in getting neighbors together to organize a Sunday School and have church services.  Reverend O. D. Purintan conducted services - Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, English speaking church people assembled to hear the word of God.  Meetings were held in the Mills School north of town.  Services were continued until 1899.  In the spring of 1899 discussion for a permanent organization was brought up with the majority favoring Hannaford as the place to erect a church building.

On May 20, 1900 the First Presbyterian Church of Hannaford was organized under the Fargo Presbytery.  Officers elected were: 

Trustees, W. J. Langdon, W. S. Hyde, Archie Sinclair

Elders, Daniel Sinclair, Duncan Sinclair, Donald Campbell.  J. B. Armstrong was elected treasurer

John Mills was Sunday School Superintendent and Mrs. W. S. Hyde, music director.  Services were held in the Hannaford schoolhouse.  In the spring of 1902 money for the building of a church in Hannaford was solicited by Donald Campbell west of the Bald Hill Creek and by James Sinclair east of the Creek.  They obtained $2200 by noon of the second day.  The church site was donated by W. J. Langdon.  Late in the summer the foundations were laid, but an early snow stopped work until the next spring.  On August 2, 1903 the church was dedicated and all the bills were paid.

W. D. Sinclair was elected an elder to succeed his father, Daniel Sinclair, who passed away on September 15, 1905.  From the beginning of the church until W. D. Sinclair's death in 1961 a Sinclair was an officer of the church.

In 1911 a building was purchased for a manse.  During World War I the church was closed for five successive Sundays due to the influenza epidemic.  Average Sunday School attendance in 1917 was 52.  In 1918 the church was wired for electric lights.  In 1926 the church was remodeled with a basement and the entire structure was improved.  Pews were secured from the church in Fargo when their new church was built.  October 17 and 18, 1926 were days of rejoicing and thanksgiving for members and friends of the church.  There was a harvest festival to celebrate the remodeling and redecorating which was now completed.  The total cost was $4900, which was met locally with the exception of a $1000 loan from the Board of National Missions.  Programs and special music and services were held both evenings and a supper and a rededication service was held on the 17th.

In 1932 it was decided to combine with the Cooperstown church and hire one minister to serve both places.  At times when there was no resident pastor the pulpit was supplied by ministers from Jamestown College.

Due to the depression and drought years, it wasn't until November 1945 that the final payment was made on the loan.  To celebrate the event a mortgage burning ceremony was held.  A history of the church was read by Mary Armstrong and the history of the Ladies Aid by Mrs. Melvin Sonju.  At the close of the program the mortgage was set on fire and the congregation watched it bum.

Because the membership decreased to such a few, the church was declared officially closed in 1973.  The building was sold to Leslie Peterson and torn down the winter of 1974-75.

People prominent in the church those many years were: 

Sinclairs, Armstrongs, Campbells, Beatties, Hyde, Mills, Langdon, Jones, Angus, Reite, Schmidts, Knauss, Benson, Boe, Flesjer, Westley, Palm, Sonju, Grover, Hoffman, Richardson, Wilson, Brown, Olsen, Steiner, Kerber, Olaf Johnson, Hagen, Wait.

Ministers through the years were: 

O. D. Puritan, J. H. Baldwin, J. N. Carnine, Oscar Bostrom, J. N. Robertson, J. S. Simpson, C. N. Miller McCoy, J. D. McCellan, J. A. McEwen, H. L. Taylor, J. C. Wilson, Nathan Wood, G. O. Vikan, E. J. Meyers, LeRoy C. Cooley, C. C. Converse, W. Ray Radliff, W. James Henderson, Harvey Senecal, Robert Schurr, Robert Maharry, and a number of "fill-ins" that almost became regulars.

Source: Griggs County History 1879 - 1976 Page 112

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