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ing room for them in the house, and I was assured that on some Sabbath evenings as many went away, unable to gain admittance, as got into the house. The ceiling was not high, the audience-room not properly ventilated, and the air was so oppressive at times as to seriously affect my health. The question of a new church began to be agitated, and various suggestions were advanced. Dr. Goe said that, without a new church and better accomodations for the people, " the grave of Methodism in Oshkosh was dug, and the only question was, whether the corpse was ready for the burial.”

At about that time it was learned that the Wagner Opera House was for sale. This was a large brick building, on the corner of Main and Merritt streets, being one hundred and twenty feet deep, sixty feet front and fifty feet high. It was arranged for three stores on the first floor, with living rooms for a family in the rear. The walls were up-the floor timbers in and the roof partly on, at this time, and the family rooms were plastered. The plan for the auditorium, with slight modifications, would render it admirably adapted to church purposes, whilst the "green room" could be converted into a lecture room, and further changes would allow of pastor's study, choir room and five class-rooms, besides infant school room. It was well located, in the central portion of the town, and was well built and withal, a fine looking building. It was found that it could be bought for twenty thousand dollars. We had on hand the old church property, consisting of church

and parsonage, on Church Street, which was free from debt, and which was estimated to be worth, and that it would sell for, ten thousand dollars. The stores under the new building, it was estimated, would pay the interest on ten thousand dollars, which it was expected could be left on the property as a permanent loan, and also pay the taxes on the stores, which would not be exempt from taxation. Thus it will be seen that all the society would have to raise by subscription would be the amount necessary to complete and furnish the building, which amount, of course, was variously estimated, from five to twelve thousand dollars.

At a joint meeting of all the officers of the church it was voted, recommending the purchase of the property, there being but one vote in the negative. At a subsequent meeting of the trustees, it was unanimously voted to purchase the property, and the purchase was comsummated, and we proceeded at once with the work of completing the building, which was done in the winter, the wages being very low, only one dollar a day for carpenters. Materials were purchased at low rates, and con siderable was donated, and the work was well and satisfactorily completed. A contract was made with Mr. S. S. Hamill, of Boston, Massachusetts, for a pipe organ of fine proportions, and of splended tone. It was placed in the building and the concert took place before the dedication, and the night before the great fire, in April, 1875.

The dedication of the church took place one week

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after the fire, and enough money was subscribed to meet all obligations assumed for the work and materials in completing the building. The dedication took place too soon after the fire, however, for the people to be really aware of how much they had suffered in consequence, and some subscribed more than they were able to pay. Others, under one plea or another, refused to paymany who had subscribed failed or refused to give their notes, and, the interest accumulating on the debt of the church, it was soon apparent that there would ultimately be, not only a shrinkage in subscriptions, but an increase of the debt. Added to this was the fact that we were unable to realize from the old church property the amount we had estimated.

But the worst feature of all, and the circumstance that gave us our first great set-back, was the influence of the man who had been employed to collect the subscriptions. He was paid a percentage on the amount collected, and everywhere announced it as his opinion that the church never could be paid for. It had its influence and the payments ceased. He soon took his letter to Algoma Street Church, and afterwards pursued me to conference to secure my removal from the church as pastor.

At the time of the purchase of the property I was appointed on the finance committee, and on the building committee, and I furnished all the plans for the completion of the building, from the time the first blow was struck, and in addition to doing this work without com

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