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Ericksdahl, Texas

History

Bethel Methodist Church.  Situated on ranch land of family of S. M. Swenson, banker who in 1850s underwrote Swedish migration to Texas. Church forms center for Ericksdahl community, founded 1905 by Swedes formerly living near Austin. Visiting pastors L. J. Sundquist and J. A. Stamline held first church service in the N. M. Segerstrom home in February 1905; congregation organized January 25, 1906. Charter members: Elias Bjorn, the J. P. Hokanson Family, Algot Johnson, John Lunn family, Oscar Magnuson, Theodore Pearson, John Peterson, the Segerstrom family, C. G. Seth family, Eric Seth, A. J. Swenson family, Mr. and Mrs. Bud Swenson. The first sanctuary was built in 1907. First resident pastors: the Rev. Theodore Seashore (1908-12), the Rev. Eric Swanson (1912-13), the Rev. Carl Henderson (1914-19). Dr. Hugo B. Haterius (pastor 1919-68) served 27 years as president of the Texas Conference of the Augustana Lutheran Church of America. As focus for community, church has recorded such lay events as opening of first school and formation of brass band, 1908; organization of local telephone company, 1917; construction of "Swede" dam, 1922-24; the first cotton gin, 1924; opening of local oil field (with 3 producing wells, 1938-65, on church property). Pastor since 1968: the Rev. Stanley D. Jurgenson. - Historical Marker Text.  Marker erected 1971. Location: from Avoca, take FM 600 NE about 4.5 miles.

Location

32° 53' 49.5312" N, 99° 39' 6.7248" W