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Early Social Gathering. Left to Right: Lady unidentified in black dress, Bertha Hal/, Carl, Olga and Ida Johnson, Elisabet Hal/, Emma Hill and baby, Petra Peterson, Elizabeth Johnson, Mrs. Jonson, Lady Unidentified, Emelia Hil/strand, Hill child, two Krantz children, Lillie, Harvey and Clarence Johnson, Milford Jonson, Ellen Krantz and child, Mrs. Gronlund, Martha Holm and Agda Johnson.

The man who trusts men will make fewer mistakes than the man who distrusts them.


by Elva Sundmark

The Hilltop Baptist Church, which was first called the Scandinavian Baptist Church, was organized in 1896 with 8 charter members: Mr. and Mrs. Peter Larson, Mrs. Charles Booth, Mr. and Mrs. Olaf Walstrom, Mr. and Mrs. Ivar Ullberg and Otto Peterson. These were joined a few weeks later by nine others: Eric Koping, Mr. and Mrs. Olaf Sundmark, Mr. and Mrs. John Sundmark, Mr. and Mrs. Wendelbo, Olga Carlson (Mrs. Carl Johnson) and Anna Walstrom (Mrs. Charles Holm­ strom).

The membership climbed to sixty five by 1918, but as young people married and moved farther away the size of the congregation gradually declined. In 1954 ten members withdrew to form the Minnedosa Baptist Church.

Our pastors during the past eighty seven years have been: N.E. Johnson - a student who served during the summer months of 1896 and 1897, G. Freeman, who served during the winter months of those same two years.

In 1897 members of the congregation obtained permits and cut sufficient logs to saw into lumber and shingles to build themselves a church home on 40 acres on S.W. 30- 17-17W. When completed it was whitewashed inside and out. In 1898-1899 A.J. Petterson was the pastor and N.J. Bergen and A.J. Sundberg served the congregation. All these pastors, with the exception of Pastor Freeman, lived with church members, staying a few months in each home. Gustav Johnson was the pastor in 1901-1902. And it was at this time that the parsonage was built. Other pastors were Wm. Ritzen, 1904-1906; E. Hindorff, 1907- 1910; C.V. Anderson 1911-1912; E. Hindorff 1913-1920;

The First Hilltop Baptist Church.

Hilltop Baptist Church.

A. Fredrickson 1921-1924; E. Hindorff 1925-1928. The present church building was erected during Pastor Hindorff's last tenure here. Ivar Johnson served in 1928 followed by David Larson, 1929-1930; O.D. Erickson, 1930-1937 and P.M. Meyer 1938-1946. Up until this time all services and business meetings had been held in the Swedish language. Hereafter only English was used. In 1946-1949 John Rodine was pastor, followed by D. Clink, 1949-1954; Charles Nethercott, 1954-1960; Keith McLeod, 1960; Clifford Davie, 1961-1963; Otto Reimer, 1964-1970; Gary Hutton, 1970-1977; Wayne Sink, 1977- 1979; Richard Swanson, 1980-1982; and Rudi Werner, 1983.

While many marriage ceremonies were performed by these pastors over the years, all the earlier weddings took place in the homes of the brides or in the parsonage. It was not until 1945 that a wedding was held in the church.