Provenance Note: An original scrapbook containing meeting minutes, historical notations, church programs, and newspaper clippings pertaining to the history of Methodist Churches in Madison County, Montana was loaned to Special Collections for photocopying during the summer of 1969 by the Rev. Don Redfield of the Faith Methodist Church in Bozeman, Montana. The original documents were returned to him and their present location is unknown.

Historical Note: The Methodist Episcopal Church, sometimes referred to as the M.E. Church, was first established in America at the Baltimore Christmas Conference in 1784, with Francis Asbury and Thomas Coke as the first bishops. Through a series of divisions and mergers, the M.E. Church became the major component of what was known as the Methodist Church in 1939 and later designated as the United Methodist Church in 1968. In 1864 the M.E. Church established a congregation in Virginia City, Montana and, in 1872, another one in nearby Sheridan. At various times the two congregations were described as members of the "Beaverhead Circuit," the "Virginia City Circuit," or the "Twin Bridges Circuit." The Sheridan church eventually became known as the United Bethel Methodist Church and is still in operation, but the Virginia City church closed sometime prior to 1975.

Content Description Note: The Madison County Methodist Church scrapbook photocopy contains historical notations and summaries of clergymen, weddings, and handwritten minutes of the governing bodies of the Methodist Episcopal Churches in Virginia City, Sheridan, and Twin Bridges, Montana from 1872-1964. The minutes are variously identified as those for the quarterly meetings of the Beaverhead, Twin Bridges, or Virginia City circuits. Additional material in the scrapbook includes newspaper obituaries of Methodist clergymen, newspaper historical features, and sample church bulletins from 1907 through 1964, with a special emphasis on the Sheridan congregation.

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Updated: 10/10/12