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St. Barnabas Church (Omaha, Neb.)


RG3963.AM:  St. Barnabas Church (Omaha, Neb.)

Records:  1868-1979
Omaha, Douglas County, Neb.:  Episcopal church
Size:  97 volumes on 15 reels of microfilm

HISTORICAL NOTE

On St. Barnabas Day, June 11, 1868, a small band of Episcopalians in Omaha, Nebraska, met and decided to erect a small mission on the eastern end of the city. Their plans remained at a standstill until October of 1868, when A.B. McDonald of New York donated one hundred dollars to begin the project. The first St. Barnabas Church was built on the corner of 9th and Dodge St., and on February 7, 1869, the first service was held. On May 3, 1869, the St. Barnabas Church was duly organized by the adoption of a constitution, which stated that "the services and sacraments celebrated in this church should be in strict conformity with the rubrics, and in harmony with the teachings of the Book of Common Prayer." George C. Betts, the first rector, assumed his duties on St. Barnabas Day, 1869.

In July of 1869, the church building was moved to the corner of 14th and Cass. The following year it was moved to 19th and California. Soon after, a tornado struck, damaging the building beyond repair. Only five weeks later, a new building was completed and being used for services. Throughout its early history, St. Barnabas was torn by conflict between the rectors and bishops over ceremonial practices. The third rector, Rev. John Williams, instituted "catholic ceremonial" in the 1870s. Because of this, St. Barnabas never received aid from the diocese or from the national headquarters.

The present St. Barnabas Church building was erected around 1915 at 4th and Davenport. The mortgage was paid in 1938. St. Barnabas Episcopal, sometimes also considered American or Anglican Catholic, continues to exist today.

SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE

This collection consists of 97 volumes of church records on 15 reels of microfilm, arranged in 7 series: 1) Vestry Minutes, 1869-1975; 2) Canonical Parish Registers, 1869-1979; 3) Registers of Church Services, 1914-1978; 4) Visitors' Registers, 1963-1976; 5) Parish Bulletins, 1887-1979; 6) Correspondence, 1882-1979; and 7) Miscellaneous Documents and Reports, 1889-1979.

This collection relates to all aspects of the history of St. Barnabas Church of Omaha, Nebraska, documented through organizational minutes, ceremonial registers, church service records, newsletters, correspondence, and official reports. The Vestry Minutes, 1869-1975, of Series 1, show the actions taken by the rector and elected parishioners of St. Barnabas Church. Treasurer's reports, committee reports, elections, and planned programs are included. Purchases and building improvements are also discussed. In the 1950s, more annual reports, audit reports, and advertisements appear, and this type of material appears more frequently in the 1960 minute volumes.

Series 2 consists of Canonical Parish Registers, 1869-1979, which contain a record of membership and ceremonial events. This material is a record of families entered into St. Barnabas, baptisms, confirmations, communicants, marriages, burials, and offerings. Relevant information, such as date, witnesses, parentage, etc., is provided with the entry of the ceremony into the record. A history of St. Barnabas Church from 1868-1881 is included at the beginning of Volume 1.

Series 3 consists of Registers of Church Services, 1914-1978, documenting services held at St. Barnabas. Information, with each service entered, includes the date, day, (holiday or special service), hour, type of service (eg. Holy Communion, Morning Prayer, Evening Prayer, Vespers), number of communicants, celebrant or officiant, attendance, offerings, and notes. The notes often record the weather condition, where a service was held, or a special ceremony or event. The Visitors' Registers, 1963-1976, of Series 4, show the date of service attended, name, address, and home church (name and/or location) of visitors to St. Barnabas.

The Parish Bulletins, 1887-1879, of Series 5, are comprised of newsletter publications of St. Barnabas Church. These bulletins have four different titles: The Parish Messenger (1887-1895), The Parish Leaflet (1915), The Weekly Letter (1922-1954), and the Newsletter (1954-1979). Included in the newsletters is information about services, meetings, programs and events, a weekly calendar, theology, and beginning in the 1950s, articles about current topics of concern. Beginning with Volume 9, many issues of other periodicals, such as the American Church Union News, Christian Challenge, The Episcopalian, and The Living Church are bound with the newsletters and were, therefore, filmed as well.

Series 6 contains Correspondence, 1882-1979, Rector's letters, resignations, extra copies of parish minutes, advertisements, material on Friendship House, and letters from the bishop of the Diocese of Nebraska, are included. One folder, containing correspondence and other material from the Rector's Search Committee, 1978, is also included. The Miscellaneous Documents and Reports, 1889-1979, of Series 7 include annual reports, a procedure book, handbooks, parish directories, programs, audit reports, a certificate of dismission, documents of transfer, treasurer's reports, vestry lists, and parochial reports.

Note:  This collection was loaned for microfilming in August of 1979. The NSHS does not hold the original volumes.

DESCRIPTION

Series 1 - Vestry Minutes, 1869-1975

Reel 1
Volume
  1. May 3, 1869 - Nov. 6, 1884
  2. Nov. 6, 1884 - Aug. 2, 1915
  3. May 4, 1908 - Nov. 8, 1913 (incomplete)
  4. Apr. 20, 1908 - May 9, 1919 (typed)
  5. Dec. 29, 1919 - Jan. 31, 1934
  6. Feb. 5, 1934 - Jan. 3, 1949
Reel 2 (begins Jan. 8, 1953)
Volume
  1. 1949-1957
  2. 1958-1962
Reel 3 (begins Jan. 21, 1965)
Volume
  1. 1963-1965
  2. 1965-1967
  3. 1968-1969
Reel 4 (begins March 18, 1970)
Volume
  1. 1970-1971
  2. 1972-1973
  3. 1974-1976

Series 2 - Canonical Parish Registers, 1869-1979

Reel 4 (cont.)
Volume
  1. 1869-1883 (includes a brief history of St. Barnabas Church covering the years 1868-1881)
Reel 5 (begins p. 220)
Volume
  1. 1884-1914
  2. 1914-1925
  3. 1926-1953
  4. 1953-1979

Series 3 - Registers of Church Services, 1914-1978

Reel 5 (cont.)
Volume
  1. Oct. 14, 1914 - Apr. 17, 1917
  2. April. 18, 1917 - Dec. 11, 1920
  3. Dec. 12, 1920 - Aug. 17, 1923
  4. Aug. 18, 1923 - Aug. 6, 1925; Oct. 11-21, 1925 (on back cover)
  5. Aug. 7, 1925 - Jan. 18, 1928
Reel 6
Volume
  1. Jan. 19, 1928 - Mar. 22, 1930
  2. Mar. 23, 1930 - Apr. 30, 1932
  3. May 1, 1932 - June 2, 1934
  4. June 3, 1934 - Feb. 28, 1940
  5. Feb. 29, 1940 - Feb. 20, 1946
  6. Feb. 21, 1946 - Jan. 16, 1948
  7. Jan. 17, 1948 - Sept. 17, 1949
  8. Sept. 18, 1949 - Dec. 30, 1951
  9. Jan. 1, 1952 - Apr. 21, 1956
  10. Apr. 22, 1956 - Feb. 14, 1961
Reel 7 (begins Jan. 23, 1964)
Volume
  1. Feb. 14, 1961 - May 1, 1966
  2. May 3, 1966 - Dec. 31, 1971
  3. Jan. 1, 1972 - Nov. 17, 1978

Series 4 - Visitors' Registers, 1963-1976

Reel 7 (cont.)
Volume
  1. Dec. 24, 1963 - Sept. 16, 1969
  2. Sept. 20, 1969 - Oct. 30, 1975

Series 5 - Parish Bulletins, 1887-1979

Reel 7A
Volume
  1. 1887 - June 24, 1897, Parish Messenger
  2. 1915, Parish Leaflet; 1922-1923, Weekly Letter
  3. 1930-1938
  4. 1940-1949
  5. 1950
  6. 1951
  7. 1952-1955 (incomplete)
  8. Oct. 3, 1954 - July 31, 1955
Reel 8 (begins Apr. 7, 1956)
Volume
  1. Feb. 7, 1954 - July 15, 1956 (bound out of order)
  2. Sept. 4, 1956 - July 28, 1957
  3. Sept. 1, 1957 - July 27, 1958
Reel 9 (begins Lent, 1959)
Volume
  1. Sept. 7, 1958 - Aug. 30, 1959
  2. Sept. 6, 1959 - Apr. 3, 1960
  3. Sept. 4, 1960 - Aug. 7, 1961
  4. Sept. 3, 1961 - Aug. 26, 1962
Reel 10 (begins Oct. 21, 1962)
Volume
  1. Sept. 2, 1962 - Aug. 25, 1963
  2. Sept. 1, 1963 - Aug. 30, 1964
  3. Sept. 6, 1964 - Aug. 29, 1965
  4. Sept. 5, 1965 - Aug. 28, 1966
  5. Sept. 11, 1966 - Aug. 27, 1967
Reel 11
Volume
  1. Sept. 10, 1967 - Aug. 25, 1968
  2. Sept. 22, 1968 - Aug. 24, 1969
  3. Sept. 7, 1969 - Sept. 6, 1970
Reel 12
Volume
  1. Sept. 13, 1970 - Sept. 12, 1971
  2. Sept. 12, 1971 - Sept. 10, 1972
  3. Sept. 3, 1972 - Sept. 2, 1973
  4. Sept. 6, 1973 - Aug. 25, 1974
Reel 13 (begins Sept. 5, 1974)
Volume
  1. Sept. 1, 1974 - Mar. 23, 1975
  2. Nov. 23, 1975; Apr. 17 - Dec. 25, 1977
  3. Jan.-July, 1978
  4. Aug.-Dec., 1978
  5. Jan.-Aug. 12, 1979

Series 6 - Correspondence, 1882-1979

Reel 13 (cont.)
Folder
  1. 1882-1899
  2. 1914-1919
  3. 1920-1927
  4. 1932-1937
  5. 1940-1949
  6. 1950-1954
  7. 1955-1959
  8. 1960-1969
  9. 1960-1969 (Primarily pamphlets and reports)
  10. 1970-1979
  11. 1978, Rector's Search Committee

Series 7 - Miscellaneous Documents and Reports, 1889-1979

Reel 13 (cont.)
Folder
  1. St. Barnabas Messenger, 1975-1976
  2. Rector's Annual Report, 1929; Annual Parish Reports for 1960, 1971, 1974
  3. Annual Parish Reports for 1975, 1976
  4. Annual Parish Reports for 1977, 1978
  5. Procedure Book for Parish Officers and Chairman of the Women's Auxiliary, Diocese of Nebraska
Reel 14
Folder
  1. Handbooks; Parish Directories, 1971-1979; Program, 1978
  2. Audit Reports, 1957, 1959, 1969
  3. Audit Reports, 1970, 1973
  4. Certificate of Dismission, 1921; Documents of Transfer, 1947-1949
  5. Treasurer's Reports, 1889-1906
  6. Treasurer's Reports, 1920-1922
  7. Vestry Lists as reported to the Douglas County Clerk, 1889-1903
  8. Parochial Reports, 1919-1929
  9. Parochial Reports, 1930-1946
  10. Parochial Reports, 1958-1961

 

ADDED ENTRIES:

Church records and registers -- Nebraska -- Omaha
Episcopal church -- Nebraska -- Omaha
Omaha (Neb.) -- Churches
St. Barnabas Church (Omaha, Neb.)

 

05-16-2008   Revised TMM

 

For additional information about this collection, please contact our Library Staff.


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