First Presbyterian Church

of Whitefish
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1921 Whitefish Montana

By The Montana National Register Sign Program

First Presbyterian Church of Whitefish. Front to side view of the church building, facing west on Central Avenue.

Not long after the Great Northern Railway announced its plans for a division point in Whitefish, Presbyterian missionary E. M. Ellis and Kalispell minister Alexander Pringle traveled by bicycle and rowboat to visit the site. Soon after, Reverend Pringle canvassed logging and railroad camps for donations of cash and labor to construct a sanctuary. By December 1903, Whitefish had its first church. The First Presbyterian Church moved several times in the early years. By 1919, it had once again outgrown its building; to accommodate congregants, the church held services in the Masonic Lodge while planning a new house of worship. Under direction of physician and active church member W. W. Taylor, the building committee devised detailed drawings, which the Spokane architectural firm Rigg and Vantyne modified only slightly. The building committee chose a Romanesque Revival style design, considered less ostentatious and more appropriate for a Protestant church than the competing Gothic tradition. Romanesque Revival churches featured masonry construction, heavily arched windows, bands of stylized decoration, and towers—in this case a Norman style square tower that serves as the building’s main entrance. The one-story building featured a large daylight basement with a high ceiling, designed to provide clearance for a full-sized basketball court. Community members donated the large art glass windows ornamenting the sanctuary. Among them are two purchased by Japanese railroad workers for $700 in honor of churchwoman Elizabeth Peck, who taught the men English. A tribute to Peck, the windows also commemorate Whitefish’s once-thriving Japanese community and the church’s long history of community service.

FLIPBOOKS

Our church has been a part of Whitefish since the beginning. Flip through and use the arrow guides to read the history of how we originated.

Church History
Commemorating Fiftieth-Year Anniversary

1903 – 1953

 

FLIP BOOK

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FLIPBOOK

History of Presbyterian Church

Whitefish Montana 1936

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Church Historical

Photogallery

what to expect

Welcome! Walk In

 

from the Archives

History Books & Articles

Mid-Week Messenger

Mid-Week Messenger

Greetings EveryoneGreetings to you all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ! Thank you all for a wonderful first Sunday as the pastor at FPC. Two people came up to me afterwards and said that the service seemed very comfortable, not at all like someone’s first time...

Mid-Week Messenger

Mid-Week Messenger

Greetings EveryoneGreetings to you all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!   This is my first contribution to the midweek messenger. For those of you who I haven’t met yet, my name is Raully Donahue and I am the new pastor at FPC. I am excited to be here. It is...

Mid-Week Messenger

Mid-Week Messenger

Greetings EveryoneGreetings Everyone. I was never a distance runner. I tried in my freshman year of high school simply because my father would not allow me to play football…too small. Even though I ended up doing OK, it was always work and never fulfilling. I tried...

301 Central Ave,
Whitefish, MT 59937

301 Central Avenue
Whitefish, MT 59937

PHONE:

(406) 862-2802