Memories of 6th Line E.U.B. Church

Taken from the History of Zion United Church, Wallace Township, 1863 – 2001. Edited by Perry Brisbin.


Zion Church had its beginning about 1860. The German settlers met in each other’s homes and the schoolhouse until 1866 when a log church was erected on Lot 30, Concession 7, across the corner from the cemetery. A contract was let for a fence to enclose the church property for $20. A well was dug by John Zurbrigg for $20.68 and a caretaker was hired for $8.25 for the year. This building served the needs of the growing congregation until 1882. That year a brick building was erected on Lot 26, Concession 7, on land donated by Burkhardt Bender Senior.


hpp_zion_med.jpegWallace Church at this time was part of the Conestoga circuit. Dietrich Dippel was the first minister in what was called the Mornington Mission. The Mornington Mission included Elma, Mornington, Wallace, and Maryborough and vicinity. The first conference records show work in this area appeared in 1861. In 1866 the church was built and the first Sunday School was organized with 20 scholars. By 1875 there was a Sunday School enrollment of about 100.


Zion Church on Concession 6 was the mother church for this whole field of endeavor. Those early workers, among them such names as, Philip Knechtel, Conrad Fischer, Christian Kirschbaum, Fred Wetzel, helped to organize, build and maintain this church as the center of the work of the Evangelical Association, as it was known at that time.

From page 3 and 4 of Zion Church History.


Memories of Clayton Bender

We learned to read German in Sunday School. Sunday School was spent learning the German language.


Memories of Idona (Walter) Krotz

Rev. Pletcher preached 20 minutes in German and then 20 minutes in English. This was 1925 to 1927.



Remodeling of the Church

On August 26, 1935 work began on the remodeling of the church. Before the restructuring of the building, the floor of Zion Church was plain unfinished pine boards 12 to 14 inches wide. The old structure was of new Cooksville brick veneer with new Windows and doors. Excavation was made for a basement under the entire church and a modern heating plant was installed. New pews and pulpits also adorned the remodeled structure.


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This was the original layout of the sanctuary.





The pews had a divider down the middle so the men sat on one side and the women on the other. Note the two stove pipes running the length of the room to provide heating.



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The new layout with open pews and electric lights. The stove pipes are gone.








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Zion Evangelical Church, Wallace – August 26, 1935. This picture was taken the morning before starting on the excavation for the basement with the congregation doing the work with team of horses and scrapers.



The men in the picture have been identified as follows: Clayton Anchenmann, Simon Walter, Herman Bender, Henry Bender, Milton Filsinger, Oscar Dippel, Robert Bender, William Klein, Addison Wenzel, Ralph Krotz, Rev. Mohr, John Walter and Philip Wenzel.






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The original brick on the building was a yellowish color and it was re-bricked with the red brick we see today.














See page 21 of Zion Church history book.


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Memories of Harry Quanz

There were sheds built on the west side of the church and across the back or North side. This gave shelter to the horses both in winter and summer. A wooden walkway platform was built out from the church toward the road. This was a good place to visit and many an invitation for Sunday dinner was extended and many accepted. Sunday after all was a good day to visit since the members of those years would do no work on Sunday unless it was absolutely necessary.


Memories of Walter Quanz

While Rev. Mohr was here it was decided to put a basement under the church. A hole was dug at the back corner by hand until it was big enough to get a dirt scraper in. A horse pulled it out full of dirt and back for more, loosened by men with shovels and picks. Then when it was large enough to get a team of horses in, things really began to happen. The ground was dug out and foundation walls were reinforced. Finally the mission was completed. This included re-bricking the building with the present brick, new windows, new pews and I think the third roof that was installed before all the leaks were stopped.


Dedication day was a great event. It was a long improvement from the old church that was built across the corner from the present Cemetery. God was worshiped and people were faithful as they clear the land. The church was the center of the community. All work together and shared each other’s joys, burdens and sorrows.

See page 20 of Zion Church history book - 1863 to 2001.


On Sunday, November 12, 1950 a large crowd filled the sanctuary of Wallace Evangelical United Brethren Church for the service of dedication of the adjoining parsonage.


Edna (Walter) Koepke Remembers:

The women would change their baby’s diapers at the parsonage and use the indoor facilities. There was no place in the church to do this. The men had an outdoor toilet in the church shed.


Larry Krotz said:

My mother has told me how this church has been the center not just for worship but for so much of all life. My aunts could barely tell a story about anything going on but that the church building and people were an integral part of it. People socialized here. They met their spouses here. This was not an hour on Sunday morning. It was Friday night for crokinole and lunch, and it was Young People’s meetings, playing baseball or volleyball and it was summer Sunday School picnics. It was also meetings of all the people who were also neighbours.


Memories of Walter Quanz

My earliest recollections of the 6th Line Evangelical Church are of going to church in the winter bundled up with Mother and Dad and my brother Harry in the cutter. When it was desperately cold, mother would cover my face and all with a woolen blanket. I could not see but could breathe okay. It was warm and cuddly with a buffalo robe over our legs and laps. When we got to church two old box stoves, two-thirds of the way back from the front of the church with a long line of stove pipes to the chimney at the front of the church, put out the welcome heat. We stood or sat nearby until warm, then took our seats.


I remember the evening services with the gas lights. Some had hung straight down and others sat against the wall with a gooseneck out far enough to accommodate the shade and heat. When lit, they made a hissing sound and sometimes had to be pumped up if the service went too long. My brother claimed as a little boy that the noise bothered him so he could not sleep, of course I never slept in church. I can still picture Rev. Kauth lighting these lamps, then singing, “Day is Dying in the West”. To me it seemed we sang it every Sunday night.  At that time the church was white brick with frosted glass windows and no basement.


I credit the teaching, by pastors and Sunday School teachers, that has been a blessing to me over the years. Rev. Mohr taught through the Catechism in preparation for church membership. We had Catechism every Saturday morning for a number of weeks. I always walked the two miles to church and then back home. One day I had chores to do and got so involved I forgot about the time of day. When mother suddenly realized what time it was she came looking for me. I hurried, washed, change my clothes, and ran every step of the way to the church, being only a few minutes late.


There were many joyful days and some sad days. Rev. Mohr used to come up to the school at 3:00 PM and pick up all the little children. They were hanging out of the Model A Coupe all over (about 20 of us). One sad day was when Orvil Wenzel was crossing Highway #23 and he was struck and killed by a car. As a young boy being a pallbearer for our school mate was a traumatic experience for me.

The most joyful day was our Wedding Day. Ruby and I had a double wedding with our cousins, Marguerite Quanz and Donald Bridge. One bride went up each asile at the same time.


I also remember times of revival meetings when evangelists came and it was at one of these that I made a commitment and accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Saviour, through His death on the Cross and His resurrection from the dead. This still is true as 55 years later I stood in the tomb of Jesus burial. It was very sobering to walk where Jesus walked from Pilot’s Hall down the steps and to be in the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus and to have been in Lazarus tomb as well.


These are just some of the many thoughts that come to mind as I think of what the 6th Line Evangelical Church means to me. It’s a place where I had the privilege of serving as Sunday School teacher, Sunday School Superintendent, Youth President and the privilege to have the chance to go back home to speak a few times.



Memories of Harry Quanz

The first pastor I can recall was Rev. Fred Meyer, a friendly one armed man. His wife was also very friendly and compassionate. I remember one very cold Sunday morning coming to church in the cutter with mom and dad. They discovered I had frozen cheeks. Mom and Mrs. Meyer gathered handfuls of snow and held it on my cheeks to “draw” the frost out. It must’ve worked as I never had ill effects from the experience. The pulpit then was not like the pulpits or podiums of today. The pulpit was about 5 feet long and back of the pulpit instead of chairs as we as we have now there was a bench approximately 5 feet long and covered with red velvet.


During the winter people would come to church with the horse and sleigh. This was before the roads were plowed in the winter for cars. Ed Hartung had a good 5 miles to come but would always be here in time to tie up his horse in the shed and get his family in church for the 10 AM morning service.


From Page 28 - 30 of Zion Church history book - 1863 to 2001.



Harry Quanz remembers:

A highlight day was when we had the Bishop from Naperville, Illinois come to be our speaker and invited nearby Evangelical ministers to have short greetings. One talked so long, we heard very little from the Bishop due to the lateness of the hour.


From Page 58 of Zion Church history book - 1863 to 2001.




Memories of Clayton Bender:

Christmas concerts lasted two hours. The choir had three anthems and the Sunday School sang songs, recited recitations, and had dialogues. There were bags of candy with an orange in it and peanuts. Two evergreen trees were decorated at the front of the church, one on each side. Candles were lit on the trees before electricity. Once the tree caught fire and Nicholas B. Krotz ran to the front, managing to extinguish the fire.


Walter Quanz remembers:

Another highlight was the programs that we always put on at Easter and Christmas. Rev. Mohr had a Delco system power plant and he installed electric lights in the parsonage and the church. During the Christmas program, he would slip home and fill the gas tank on the engine or we would be in the dark.


Page 74 in Zion Church history book.






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Zion Cemetery / 6th Line Church Cemetery

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The first burial in the Cemetery which is marked is of George Michael Bender who died December 26, 1862. His wife Justina Maria Bender died May 16, 1864.







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