NEWS & VIEWS OF PHILLIPS SINCE 1976
Saturday May 28th 2022

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100 Year Old Church is a Treasure within 129 Year Old Legacy and 1500 Years of Welsh Culture

100 Year Old Church is a Treasure within 129 Year Old Legacy and 1500 Years of Welsh Culture

By Sue Hunter Weir Since at least the 1880s, what we now call the Phillips Neighborhood, has been home to thousands of immigrants and their families, many of whom are buried or have relatives buried, in Minneapolis Pioneers and Soldiers Memorial Cemetery. Their contributions to the city”'s early development are among the reasons why the cemetery is on the National Register of Historic Sites (the only cemetery in Minnesota honored with that designation). Many of those buried in the cemetery, quite literally, built the city of Minneapolis. Their presence is still visible throughout the Phillips Neighborhood most notably in many of the old churches which functioned not only as places of worship but as places where the language and culture of the “old country” was celebrated and preserved. Among those buried in the cemetery are several named Evans, Hughes, Jones, Morris and Williams””most of them the children of Welsh immigrants. (If your house is 100 years old and located between 15th and 17th Avenues from Franklin Avenue to Lake Street, there”'s a good chance that someone with one of those names lived in, or built, your house). This year marks the 100th anniversary of the groundbreaking of the Welsh Church located at 2917 15th Avenue South, on the edge of the parking lot behind In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre. It was the last Welsh church built in Minneapolis. From 1883 until their new Welsh Church opened its doors in 1911, the church”'s congregation met in a church located at the intersection of Franklin and 17th Ave. In a history of the church that was published in 1931, in honor of the congregation”'s 50th anniversary, William Jones noted that most of the church”'s early members “lived within walking distance of their church.” As members of the congregation moved farther south in the city, they felt the need to build a new church in “a more convenient location,” and [...]

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