St. Martin of Tours - Valley City, Ohio

The History of St. Martin of Tours Valley City
1822 - 1900 - 2000


1822

Missionary activity in the area.

1840

30 families establish the first parish community for the area. Cincinnati Bishop Purcell, head of Diocese that included all of Ohio suggested flooding of the Rocky River might require 2 churches:

1841

Log church, Queen of All Saints, (approx area Route 252 & Neff Rd.)

1842

Small brick church, St. Mary's, (on Abbeyville Rd. near Zion church).

Order of the Precious Blood priests, served the communities, until 1861.
(1842 to the end of the century, 23 different priests pastored the parish.)

1847

Diocese of Cleveland established.

1849
 

Previous churches became too small, 
3rd church built (brick), St Martin of Tours (Station Rd.)

1850

Current cemetery is established.

1854

First resident pastor was the Rev. Peter A. Capeder.

1858

1st School organized (frame building was later destroyed by fire)

1861

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Another larger church, was the 4th built. All construction was done by local farmers who agreed to give a year of their time. They did their spring plowing and then left the fields to the Lordís care. They dug clay and fired bricks within a short distance from the church. Legend says the harvest following was "one of the best" in years.
The building's construction was completed at a cost of $30,000. (Interior unfinished.) 

The steeple rises 90 feet, has 2 bells, the smaller dated 1849 and the larger dated 1861, by Buckeye Bell Foundry - Cincinnati.

It would take 20 years to finish the interior of the church and its furnishings.

1862

Rev. J. Dolweck was the first Diocesan priest to serve as pastor.

1864

School was moved into the old church building.

1872

Father Rebholz (pastor from 1872-1885) began the work to finish the interior of the church, including the beautiful Gothic Altars and Statues from Germany, terra cotta Stations of the Cross, Pews and Organ. The altar front contains statues of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Higher, on each side, are Peter and Paul.

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1873
 

School operation became permanent.
Over the years, staff alternated between religious and lay personnel.
 

1881

Pipe organ (built in Milwaukee, WI) was brought into the church.  

1894

Rectory was built.

1897

Father Braeunig (pastor 1897-1909) guided the installation of the stained glass windows. The original green glass windows were packed and sent to a mission church in the Dakotas.