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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Mason City in Cerro Gordo County, Iowa — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

St. John Baptist Church

715 Sixth Street S.W.      Mason City, Iowa

 
 
St. John Baptist Church Marker image. Click for full size.
By Lugnuts, May 2, 2021
1. St. John Baptist Church Marker
Inscription.  Conceptualized in 1919, incorporated - September 21, 1920. This site for the church was purchased in 1926. The founding members and families of St. John Baptist Church worked diligently to erect a building to bring a small but growing African-American community together for praise and worship.

Because of meager and limited resources of the congregation, the edifice was constructed in stages. The basement level was started in 1919 and served as the sanctuary worshiping space for the congregation for 19 years. The committed congregational visionaries labored for several more years to construct the current church structure.

The construction of the church is unique in that it was built with lime stone blocks, windows, and other building materials recovered and purchased for $600 from the demolished former elementary grant school that once stood at 503 6th Street SW. The school was razed in 1937. Additional building materials from the razed school site were purchased for $1100 after a tag day sale. A distinctive building block from the razed school lies upside down on the rear of the church that reads “schoo“. The upper

St. John Baptist Church Looking Southwest image. Click for full size.
By Lugnuts, May 2, 2021
2. St. John Baptist Church Looking Southwest
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level was completed in 1939. The complete church was dedicated September 29, 1940.

The current standing building of the St. John Baptist Church is the result of the vision and labor of

Building Committee Members
Mrs. Reed Allen, President William B. Martin, Treasurer
Rev. J. Lee Lewis, Advisor
Overton H. Burrell • James T. Jeffries • Arron E. Macer • Benjamin F. Parker
Rev. James M. Eaves, Pastor
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansChurches & Religion. A significant historical date for this entry is September 21, 1920.
 
Location. 43° 8.775′ N, 93° 12.746′ W. Marker is in Mason City, Iowa, in Cerro Gordo County. Marker is at the intersection of 6th Street SW and South Jackson Avenue, on the right when traveling east on 6th Street SW. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 715 Sixth St SW, Mason City IA 50401, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Cronin-Dexter Camp No. 28 United Spanish War Veterans (approx. 0.6 miles away); Replica of the Statue of Liberty (approx. 0.7 miles away); Mason City Area Veterans Monument (approx. 0.7 miles away); The Historic Park Inn Hotel and City National Bank (approx. 0.7 miles away); Veterans Memorial (approx. 0.7 miles away); Civil War Memorial (approx. 0.7

St. John Baptist Church, Rear View, Looking Northwest image. Click for full size.
By Lugnuts, May 2, 2021
3. St. John Baptist Church, Rear View, Looking Northwest
Note the upside-down block next to the window, as referenced in the marker text.
miles away); "The Music Man" (approx. ¾ mile away); World War Memorial (approx. ¾ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Mason City.
 
Upside-down block as referenced in the marker text. image. Click for full size.
By Lugnuts, May 2, 2021
4. Upside-down block as referenced in the marker text.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 8, 2021. It was originally submitted on May 8, 2021, by Lugnuts of Germantown, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 45 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on May 8, 2021, by Lugnuts of Germantown, Wisconsin. • Mark Hilton was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 13, 2021