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State Line Rural Methodist Church finds a new home


By Kirsten Zoellner

Fri, Aug 17th, 2012
Posted in Harmony Features

A crew from Progressive Movers begins to move the State Line Rural Methodist Church from its original 1881 location to its new home just north of the Iowa border.

Each year, buildings that once defined our communities are either demolished or left to fall into utter disrepair. The sagging economy doesn’t often have a place for these old buildings and those left to care for them often have no choice. Luckily for one area building, there was a local couple who simply couldn’t bear to see it go. “This is an exciting day,” beams Janice Huff. “It feels funny seeing it here, but it’s wonderful!”

Just three miles south of Harmony, off of Highway 139 on State Line Road, the State Line Rural Methodist Church was constructed in 1881, with a basement built in 1927. The church had been served by the same pastor as Harmony Methodist Church, but events at the facility ceased in 2005, when the church was closed and the congregation was consolidated with the Harmony congregation. Soon, the church body found it uneconomical to continue to care for the aging building and discussions about its bleak future began.

Enter Larry, who serves on the cemetery board, and Janice. “The church’s journey began about a year ago with just a thought as, ‘Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to save that historic old building before it falls apart?’” notes Huff. “There had been a previous offer to buy it, but the church body denied the sale. It’s a delicate topic. We talked to the members from the old church and it was voted, with the new church, that they would sell the building to us.” By November of 2011, the legal paperwork was signed with the intention that the building would move just 1000 feet southeast, across Highway 139 and State Line Road to the Iowa side, to their homestead.

Preliminary work for the move began with Peterson spending countless hours landscaping the eventual resting place of the building, moving soil, putting in a waterway and a driveway. Chad and Larry Wangen, from nearby Canton, assisted with tree trimming and removal. Then, Huff and Peterson began the tedious task of getting the building itself fit for moving. “Larry and I spent countless houses working in the old church basement. We needed to tear out the tin ceiling, stairs, cupboards, sink, stove, refrigerator, furnace and ductwork, plumbing, wiring, basement windows, woodwork, and some doors. Larry then had to remove the outside steps and dismantle the old west entrance. He salvaged the cement walkway and the old outhouse, which we now use as a garden shed.”

Work continued as the e .....
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Harmony Foods

Tracing Abe Lincoln’s Springfield, IL, footsteps, Part 3

By Gerri Nielsen

Fri, Aug 10th, 2012
Posted in Harmony Features

WEDNESDAY: Today included a field trip to the New Salem open-air history museum and state park with our own personal guide, Charles Starling, a retired Illinois Historical Preservation Agency Site interpreter. Charlie gave us all the facts we could ..... 
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Harmony Enterprises, Inc. celebrating 50 years

Fri, Aug 3rd, 2012
Posted in Harmony Features

For the past 50 years, the small town of Harmony has been home to a large worldwide business, and many people aren’t even aware of what goes on there. Harmony Enterprises, Inc., known to the local residents as HECO, offers more to the world than c ..... 
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Tracing Abe Lincoln’s Springfield, IL, footsteps

By Gerri Nielsen

Fri, Jul 27th, 2012
Posted in Harmony Features

Remember the saying, “Be nice to nerds--someday you’ll be working for one”? Our 16th President was a nerd--a 6’-4,” book-readin’, rail-splittin’, 6-inches-too-short-trousers-wearin’ doofus. He also was somewhat of a loser--he lost j ..... 
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Fundraiser for Jem Theatre a huge success

Mon, Feb 27th, 2012
Posted in Harmony Features

Saturday, February 11, hundreds of people gathered at Wheelers in Harmony to help raise money to keep Fillmore County’s only theatre in business. The support from the community was huge, and the event raised $15,773.50. Lynn Mensink, one of the ..... 
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