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| History of Freeland,
Churches and places of worship
This page reflects the variety of Freeland's populace and our churches in past and present. I'm still learning about the many churches and other religious institutions of Freeland, and so if you see information that seems incomplete or incorrect, please send e-mail to let me know. Some of the names might be slightly incorrect, due to differences in how churches were listed in various sources over time, and some my labels of denominations or ethnic groups may also be mistaken. I'll correct the entries as I get more information. Enjoy.
Photo at top left appears courtesy of John Zubach.
Please note: I'm in the process of redesigning this section of the site. If the church in the lists below has a single link, that takes you to its new individual page. For those churches whose individual pages aren't made yet, what's here is the paragraph that was previously on my site, with links to photos. The new pages will have more images and more information. You can scroll down here to see the pages that are currently available.
What's on this page - eventually all of these entries will link to individual pages for each church:
On related pages:
STILL IN EXISTENCE
Bethel Baptist Church - Ridge & Walnut Sts. - An early view of the church at Ridge & Walnut Streets, built to replace an earlier church that had been located on Fern Street. Here's the cornerstone.
Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception - 820 Centre St.
Presbyterian Church of Freeland - 607 Front St.
St. John's Reformed United Church of Christ - Washington & Chestnut Sts.
St. Luke's Lutheran Church - Washington & Main Sts. - The original St. Luke's Church, shown here, was constructed of wood, and stood at Washington & Main Streets. The original church, shown here in another view, was built in the year that Freeland was incorporated. It was later rebuilt of local stone on the same site, as commemorated on the cornerstone. Here is a view of the interior of St. Luke’s in the fall of 1910 as “Harvest Home” was being celebrated by Pastor D. A. Roth (photo courtesy of C. Stumpf). Also, shown here is St. Luke's confirmation class in 1945 (photo courtesy of Bill Smith).
St. Mary's Byzantine Catholic Church - N. Fern St. - There have been three different St. Mary's Churches constructed on the same block of north Fern Street. Shown here are the second church building (the center church of the three churches shown here) and third church building (at the top of the hill). Here too is another view of the current church from back before the convent was built, and a view of the cornerstone.
St. Michael's Orthodox Greek Catholic Church - Fern St. - St. Michael's was founded in 1938. Shown here are the cornerstone, the front of the church, and a larger view of the church building that shows the lovely, airy domes.
NO LONGER IN EXISTENCE
Beth Sholom Congregation - Front and Birkbeck Sts. (closed, now the public library)
Calvary Full Gospel Church - 405 Ridge St. - That name has also been used (Sanborn map) for the New Calvary Pentecostal Church on Front street near Birkbeck. 405 Ridge street looks like the address of Belekanich’s, formerly a public school. Might that be where this congregation met until their new church building on Front street was built?
Christian Holiness Church - 911 Centre St. (closed, later a factory, building gone)
New Calvary Pentecostal Church - Front and Birkbeck Sts. (closed, now the public library) - This church was built on Front St. near Birkbeck Sreet in the 1920s. Here's another photo taken in winter, along with a view of the interior. At a later time the building was reused by the Beth Shalom Congregation, and now it houses the Freeland branch of the Hazleton Area Public Library, as indicated by the plaque added to the cornerstone.
Park United Methodist Church - 608 Main St. (recently closed, building still there)
Pentecostal Mission - 704 Main St. (closed, building converted or replaced)
Polish Independent Church - 1036-1038 Birkbeck St., South Heberton (closed, building converted to homes)
St. Ann's Roman Catholic Church - 820 Centre St. (closed, building still there, superseded by Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception combining parishes of St. Ann's, St. Anthony's, St. Casimir's, St. John Nepomucene) - An early view of the original St. Ann's Church at Woodside, before a new church was built at 820 Center Street, and later a newer one was built on the same site. And here's another early view of the first St. Ann's church.
St. Anthony's Roman Catholic Church - Fern St. (closed, building gone, superseded by Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception combining parishes of St. Ann's, St. Anthony's, St. Casimir's, St. John Nepomucene) - St. Anthony's is the church closest to the viewer in the row of churches shown here on Fern Street, the other two being older and newer St. Mary's churches. Here's another early view, interestingly labeled "St. Januarius." A new St. Anthony's Church was later built on the same site as the old one. This is the cornerstone.
St. Casimir's Church - S. Ridge St. (closed, building gone, superseded by Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception combining parishes of St. Ann's, St. Anthony's, St. Casimir's, St. John Nepomucene) - St. Casimir's was founded early in Freeland's history by immigrants from Poland and Lithuania. This cornerstone on the current building commemorates both the original church and the newer one that was built to replace it at the same location on Ridge Street. Just up the street on the same block of Ridge St. was St. John's original church building.
St. James Episcopal Church - 439 S. Washington St. (closed, building converted to apartments)
St. John Nepomucene Roman Catholic Church - Vine St. (closed, building still there, superseded by Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception combining parishes of St. Ann's, St. Anthony's, St. Casimir's, St. John Nepomucene) - The original St. John's Nepomucene Church was at Ridge and Luzerne Streets. Later a new church was built on Vine Street at South Street, as commemorated on the cornerstone. The earlier photo appeared in the Kalendar Jednota 1906. Its caption translates to: "Slovak Church and Rev. Karol Pajdusak, pastor in Freeland, Pa."Also from the same Kalendar Jednota 1906, here is a view of the interior of the old church. Just down the street on the same block of Ridge St. was St. Casimir's Church.
St. Mary's Lithuanian R. C. Church - 608 Center St. (closed, temporary headquarters recently torn down)
Ss. Peter & Paul's Eastern Greek Catholic Church - 921 Walnut St. (closed, building still there)
St. Peter and Paul's Slovak Lutheran Church - Washington St. (closed, building still there) - This is said to be the earliest Slovak Lutheran church in the western hemisphere. I'll add a photo of the church later, but here are the cornerstone and the historical marker issued by the state of Pennsylvania.
St. Paul's Primitive Methodist Church - Fern street, moved from Jeddo in 1892/1893 to land owned by St. Mary's (closed, building gone)
Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church - 1036-1038 Birkbeck St., South Heberton (closed, building converted to homes)
Zion Welsh Baptist Church- Fern St. (closed, building gone) [Although this church was listed as Baptist in contemporary directories, on May 13, 2010 I got a note from Bob Zimmerman saying: "St.Anthony's Church was originally a Welsh Congregational Church and, according to Pastor Mark Whitmer, was not a Baptist Church." I'll add more information when I get its individual page done. If you have information to add, I hope you'll email me. Thanks!]