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Wyandotte County, Kansas




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The Story of Kansas City, Kansas

"A Church Divided"

After the first hard year of 1843-1844, the coming of winter had helped to stamp out disease.  Books, magazines and newspapers began to arrive.  The Wyandots loved to read and wished to know what was going on in the world.  The farmers set out the first fruit trees.  But affairs were not going well in the little church which everyone had helped to build.

Some of the Wyandots thought it was all right to own slaves.  Men like William Walker and Charles Garrett, whose people had come from the South, disagreed with other Wyandots who did not believe in slavery.

When the Indians had lived here for three years, the government finally paid them some of the money it owed them.  The 160 members of the church, who had survived the early hardships, wanted a new church.  In 1847 they built a brick building at what is now 10th and Walker.  The slavery and anti-slavery groups disagreed over who was to preach in the new church.  Wyandots who were not members took sides and added to the trouble.

The result was that some of the church people formed a group known as the Methodist Church South and followed their missionary into the new church.  The remainder, numbering about 95, held services out-of-doors or in private homes.  Later they erected a log building on what is now part of old Quindaro Cemetery.  By 1848, four years after they had worked so hard together to build the little "Church in the Wilderness," the Wyandots were divided with bitter feelings and were attending two churches.

In the troubled times here before the Civil War both the churches were burned.  The ground at Quindaro became a cemetery where many early-day Wyandots are buried.  A linden tree with a long scar on it marked for years the spot where the church stood.

The Washington Avenue Methodist Church is the descendant of the log church in Quindaro.  It had several locations before moving to Seventh Street and Washington Boulevard.  The Seventh Street Methodist Church across from the Town House Hotel is the South church.  It once was located on the corner of Seventh Street and Minnesota Avenue.

The Council Fire

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Contact the History Webmaster - Patricia Adams

History Site created on December 02, 2002
Page last updated: 02-Jan-2012

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