The Third Building Project
The original 8 founding members of the Church of the Pioneers grew rapidly and in 1916 the membership had grown to 275. The Reverend Gerrit Snyder, came in 1916 and began developing a plan for a new church building to provide space for a growing program.
On the same plot of land, construction of the first part began in 1922. The corner stone was laid on November, 1922. A small tower and an east wing had been added to the old stone church between 1911 and 1913.
The Current Church Building
After years of fundraising and coming together as a congregation, ground was broken on the current church building on February 3, 1974. The old church property was sold to the Ellis County Historical Society and was registered on the National Register of Historic Places. The new building was complete and ready for Easter services on March 30, 1975.
History of FPC Hays
This photo is of "Grandma Wilson" who, along with seven others, was present when the charter of this congregation was signed. Grandma Wilson is given credit in organizing the first church in Hays City in 1871. In addition, she was still in town when this small congregation purchased three lots on Pine (Seventh) Street and witnessed in September, 1879, construction of the first church building in Hays. It was dedicated in 1880, constructed of native stone and was a basic one room for worship.
- Paraphrased from words written by John C. Thorns, Jr.