Cheyenne First Christian Church—History Part 1
In October 1925, Charles and Martha Ann Hannan came to Cheyenne on vacation. They wanted to start a church. Some charter members helped make 520 house calls which disclosed thirty unaffiliated members of the Disciples of Christ. The fledgling church met at Schrader’s Funeral Home (Castle Dare) until 1927.
On January 3, 1926, the church was formally organized, and the charter roll closed with 101 members. The small congregation worked diligently to raise money for land and a building. The cornerstone was laid May 15, 1927. The Education unit was dedicated October 2, 1927. On December 29,1929, the 500th member joined the church.
The 1930’s swooped in, and church finances were discouraging. In September 1930, Dr. Hannan resigned. Rev. C. E. Per Lee was the next pastor. Even though the congregation was struggling, effort was made to continue missionary work and concern for others. On April 27, 1933, the church considered closing, but voted to continue. Women of the church held a series of dinners and cookie sales to pay Dr. Per Lee. His final sermon was December 24, 1933. L. C. Anderson preached on December 31, 1933. In 1936, once again, the church considered closing, but the Board of Church Extension agreed to pay part of the minister’s salary if Dr. Hannan would return. December 1936, Rev. Hannan accepted the call. During all this time, members were giving sacrificially.
Then came the war years. The church always had members from Warren Air Force Base, but then there was a large number attending. In 1944, the service flag had 79 stars. The 1944 Disciples Yearbook listed FCC of Cheyenne as a leader in Evangelism. With the end of WW II, Rev. Hannan resigned. In September 1946, Rev. Ray Borgaard was called as pastor. The 25th anniversary of the church was celebrated January 3, 1951. Each table had a small silver church, and the speakers table a large silver church. An offering of silver dollars totaled $65.
As you can see, this article covers only the first 25 years, and it barely skimmed the surface. Stay tuned for another installment in a future Bell newsletter.