Williamson County
Historical Commission

 

 

Hutto Evangelical Lutheran Church

Historical Marker

Hutto, Texas

2010
located at Corner of Church and Live Oak Streets

1942

 
  Marker Text:
Lutheran church services in Hutto can be traced to 1890, when ministers M. Noyd and Gustav Berglund of the Palm Valley Lutheran Church at Brushy (now Round Rock) conducted occasional services for the area's rapidly growing Swedish population. In 1892 August Swenson led a successful effort to organize the Hutto Evangelical Lutheran Church. The first church structure (1893) was destroyed by a tornado and replaced in 1894. In 1902 a third church building was constructed at this site an dedicated by the Rev. O. H. Sylvan. Church services were conducted in the Swedish language until 1940.




Hutto Lutheran Church
(
ONE HUNDRED YEARS WITH THE HUTTO LUTHERAN CHURCH)
Historical Narrative by Johanna 0. Wimberley

The community of Hutto, Texas, located in Williamson County, is best known for its good tillable black land used for growing cotton. The city of Hutto is named after the person with that name. Hutto is one of the youngest Swedish communities in Texas; Swedes come about ten years after the International and Great Northern Railroad (1876) was established. The city of Hutto is a pleasant little country town of around 1000 inhabitants; and has an excellent school system and on the religious side, has [1] Swedish Methodist and Swedish Lutheran Churches.

Many Swedish immigrants settled in and around the Hutto community. Pastors M. Noyd and Gustav Berglund of Palm Valley Lutheran Church made pastoral visits to these people; many were members of the Palm Valley Church at Brushy. Visits now and then did not satisfy the souls long; talk began about organizing a congregation. For this purpose a group met in the Hutto Public School January 25, 1892. Plans were made to build a church. In seeking a shepherd they turned to their home country, Sweden, but received the answer to seek help from the Augustana Synod in Rock Island, Illinois. This advise was accepted June 25, 1892 under the leadership of August Swenson. Thirty-four adults and twenty-two children attended this first organizational meeting. At this time the Constitution of the Augustana Synod was accepted.

On August 6, 1892 the members voted at a congregation meeting to build the first church, This first is building was built where the Co-op gin is now located at 408 W. Highway 79, and was completed January 26, 1893. Exactly one year offer the first organizational meeting took place, the Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hutto, Texas filed its charter on January 25, 1893 with the Office of the Secretary of State in Austin. The first three trustees were Carl Swenson J. A. Johnson Carl Johnson, all of Hutto. The total value of assets listed in this document amounted to $1,180.00. The joy of worshipping in a new temple was not a long continued blessing as it was destroyed by a small tornado, Saturday, July 21, 1894. Work began immediately to build a second church.

On October 6, 1894 a building committee was established to plan and construct a new church. This second church was utilized through the turn of the century before the members of the growing congregation decided to sell it with all the interior fixtures included. The church was used for eight years.

At the annual meeting of 1900, it was decided to build the present church. On March 25, 1901 the congregation authorized the committee of S. August Swedson John Ljungren, Gust Hyltin, and Andrew Spong, to let the contract for construction of our present church. The church was built on the corner of Church and Live Oak Streets. This property was purchased by the Luther League for the price of $225.00. Dedication of was this new church was held by Pastor O.H. Sylvan in Swedish on the last Sunday in July of 1902. Pastor Sylvan from Sweden was the first full time pastor serving from 1901 through 1914.

A place for a congregational cemetery was needed; land was purchased March 1903 for $175.00. Another acre of land was added to the cemetery in 1937 at the price of $200.00.
In 1915 Mr. August Swenson donated the pipe organ to the church and later,, had the electric blower installed when electricity became available.
Members of the congregation purchased a home October 1898 to serve as the parsonage. A new parsonage was erected next to the church during the summer of 1915. This two-story parsonage was replaced by a new modern home in 1951.

Need for additional space resulted in the building of a Parish Hall in April 1924. This hall was located directly East of the church facing Live Oak Street. [2]

From the very beginning of Hutto Lutheran Church, Swedish services were held every Sunday. The first English service was introduced in the late 1920's. This was met with much opposition as all of the members were of Swedish descent and most were from Sweden. The newer generations were not as familiar with the Swedish language so gradually all the services were held in English, By the late 1930's, only the fifth Sundays were set aside for Swedish services. By 1940 all the worship services were held in English.

New memorial windows for the church were dedicated July 1979. Most of the windows were given in honor of many of the charter members and [3] their families.

Additional church property of approximately one acre with a house, known as the Sain property, located East of the Parish Hall on Live Oak Street, was purchased for $75,000 In December 1984. The house on the property, now known as the Educational Building, was renovated and is being used for Sunday School, Vacation Bible School and Hutto Lutheran
Day Care. [4]

As we approach our second century of life under the Lordship of Christ, we at Hutto Lutheran Church set forth our mission to the glory of God. "One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism, One God and Father for us all" [5]


1 Scott, Dr. Alfred, SVENSKARNE I TEXAS 1838-1918, p. 562.
2 HUTTO LUTHERAN CHURCH GOLDEN JUBILEE 1692-1942, p. 5-7.
3 MEANMORIALSEDICATED TO THE GLORY OF GOD, July 29, 1979, p. 1.
4 HUTTO LUTHERAN CHURCH 95th ANNIVERSARY, 1892-1987, pi 11
5 HOLY BIBLE, Ephesians 4:5, 6a, p. 1199.

Researched and written by Johanna 0. Wimberley


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