Columbus in Platte County, Nebraska — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
United Methodist Church Bell
Buckeye Bell Foundry
The first record of Methodist religious work in the Surprise area dates back to 1871 when C. W. Comstock was pastor of the Seward Circuit. This charge consisted of the north half of Seward County, the west half of Butler, and parts of York Counties. Rev. Chippenfield was the organizer of the Surprise Methodist Church in 1877. Meetings were held in the Wilson's Hall. Charter members were: Messrs. and Mesdames Henry, Hinkle, Sleeger, Simpkins, McPherson, and Greenslit.
The first church was built in 1888 and just two years later, in 1890, Rev. H. G. Pittenger was instrumental in the building of a parsonage. Greenleaf was combined with Surprise 1889 and stayed until 1922. Pleasant Lawn was transferred from Gresham in 1890 and the years 1887-1889 found Gresham and Surprise working together. The Surprise church was alone from 1922-1936; and at that time, Rising City was combined with them. In 1944, Ulysses and Surprise were combined. In 1967, they again combined Surprise with Rising City for four years, and then Shelby
In 1922, the church was raised onto a new foundation and a basement dug. The final service in the United Methodist Church, Surprise, was held on May 1, 1976. The Church was then closed, and the Village of Surprise became the new owners of the building.
Erected 1992 by Columbus Community Foundation, Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce, and Concerned Citizens and Organizations.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion • Communications • Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Historic Bells series list. A significant historical month for this entry is May 1892.
Location. 41° 25.357′ N, 97° 22.114′ W. Marker is in Columbus, Nebraska, in Platte County. Marker is on 33rd Avenue (U.S. 30/81) near 7th Street, on the right when traveling south. Belltower is in Pawnee Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Columbus NE 68601, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named United Methodist Church Bell (here, next to this marker); St. Michael's Catholic Church Bell (here, next to this marker); Sacred Heart Catholic Church Bell (here, next to this marker); St. Mary's Catholic Church BellNorth Branch, Oregon Trail (a few steps from this marker); St. Bernard Catholic Church Bell (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named St. Bernard Catholic Church Bell (a few steps from this marker); Congregational Church Bell (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Columbus.
Credits. This page was last revised on November 30, 2020. It was originally submitted on September 29, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 436 times since then and 38 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on September 29, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. 4. submitted on September 28, 2012, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.