Category Archives: Churches

Williamsville United Methodist Church

A 2007 church history says Williamsville United Methodist Church can trace its history to “religious exercises” held in the area, probably by the Rev. Stephen England of Cantrall, in 1820. The area’s first Methodist Society was formed near Spaulding in … Continue reading

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St. Barbara Slovenian Catholic Church

St. Barbara Church, 15th and Laurel streets, was Springfield’s Slovenian Catholic parish from 1911 until 1947. Thirty-seven Slovenian residents of the Springfield area – many of them coal miners – formed a Slovenian Church Building Association in 1909, each pledging … Continue reading

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Rev. Stanley Yunker

Father Stanley Yunker (1894-1975) was pastor of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church for 47 years.

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St. Vincent de Paul Church

The story of Lithuanians in Springfield began with young Lithuanian men who first sought work in the coal mines, then returned home and bought land, started families and hoped for a better future. Other Lithuanian miners, however, remained transients for … Continue reading

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Rayburn memorial, Oak Ridge Cemetery

One of the most prominent monuments in Oak Ridge Cemetery serves as a reminder of a thoroughly unconventional religious sect that got its start in Williamsville. The monument consists of an eight-foot-tall marble sculpture of a woman atop a 40-foot … Continue reading

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St. James Trade School (closed high schools)

St. James Trade School trained boys, originally orphans, for such jobs as mechanic, baker, the building trades, butcher and others from 1930 until 1972. St. James was a boarding school from 1930 to 1963 and then became a day school. … Continue reading

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Church of St. Francis of Assisi

The ornate Church of St. Francis of Assisi, built from 1920 to 1924, is the centerpiece of the motherhouse of the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis northeast of Springfield. See Franciscan Motherhouse.

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Franciscan Life Center (Franciscan motherhouse)

The Hospital Sisters of St. Francis, who have served the sick in central Illinois since 1875, have their headquarters on a 300-acre site northeast of Springfield. The order of Roman Catholic nuns purchased the property (then 500 acres) in 1917 … Continue reading

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St. Augustine’s Episcopal Mission

St. Augustine’s Episcopal Mission was a congregation of black Episcopalians founded in Springfield in 1891. The congregation was renamed St. Luke’s in 1908, when Episcopal Bishop Edward Osborne authorized the membership to begin using the building formerly occupied by the … Continue reading

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St. Luke’s Episcopal Church

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 1218 South Grand Ave. E., began in 1876 under the name of Lincoln Memorial Chapel, an Episcopal mission directed at former slaves. The mission was short-lived, but local Episcopal bishops Revs. George Seymour and Edward Osborne … Continue reading

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