Congregational Church of Batavia Records, 1835-2017
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Brief Description:

Recording an important aspect of Batavia history, the records of the Congregational Church document the establishment and history of one of the oldest churches in Kane County.  Church/Congregational Society minutes (1835-1966) comprise the major series of the collection detailing church business concerns such as acceptance of members, committee appointments, church repairs, and reports from the church treasurer and various church organizations.  Trustee meeting minutes (1933-1990) supplement the church minutes with financial reports, stewardship plans, and committee reports.  Although the collection lacks a comprehensive series of financial records, several church and trustee treasurer's account books record expenditures and donations of church members.

Building records comprise a small series in the collection; only materials documenting the construction of an education facility in 1966 are available.  Architectural correspondence, construction proposals, and stewardship promotional materials reveal building alterations made during 1965 and 1966. Numerous oversize architectural drawings detailing construction plans for the project are also contained in the collection.

A fourth series in the collection comprises church organization records.  Minutes and committee reports from groups such as the Ladies Aid Society, Women's Fellowship, and Delta Alphas outline the service and social orientation of these organizations.  Church bulletins (1942-1974) supply further information on church group functions as well as listing the orders and themes of Sunday services.

In addition to church records, the collection includes records of several prominent church members.  Personal materials and diaries of Amelia Brown, church clerk from 1881-1929, record the activities and thoughts of a respected church servant.  J.G. Brown's correspondence and Civil War military records (1845-1869) provide insight into the lifestyle of a young man during the uncertain years of the mid-nineteenth century.  These materials also include over forty portraits of various church members.  Letters of transfer and dismissal (1835-1920) from various churches across the nation reflect the congregation's constant growth throughout the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

A series of addenda were added at a later date which expands on the content of the previously donated records to 2016.

The DVD in Addendum 4 has been copied to V:\ARCHIVES\RCElectronicArchives\RC 082 Batavia Congregational Church. Access is available to researchers in the Center’s reading room.

Held at:
Northern Illinois University
Founders Memorial Library
Northern Illinois University
DeKalb, IL 60115
Phone: 815-753-1779
Email: rhcua [at] niu.edu
Record Series Number: RHC/RC/082
Volume: 10.5 Linear Feet
Acquired: 01/27/1981. Additional records were added on various dates by the church archivists.
Access Restrictions: There are no restrictions on access to the collection.
Subject Index
Batavia (Ill.)
Batavia Congregational Church
Brown, Amelia
Brown, J.G.
Church of the Big and Little Woods
Congregational Church (Batavia)
Congregationalists
Diaries-- 1840-1869
Diaries-- 1870-1909
Diaries-- 1910-1960
Kane County (Ill)
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865
Languages of Materials
English [eng]
Rights/Use Restrictions: Property rights in the collection are held by the Congregational Church of Batavia; literary rights are dedicated to the public.
Technical Access Notes: Electronic records may be accessed on the computer in the Center’s reading room.
Acquisition Notes: Reverend Arthur Christofersen  Reverend Arthur Christofersen deposited the records of the Congregational Church of Batavia in the Northern Illinois Regional History Center on January 27, 1981.
Related Materials:

The Regional History Center holds other Illinois church history collections including Unitarian Fellowship, DeKalb (RC 13); First Congregational Church, DeKalb (RC 17); First Methodist Church, DeKalb (RC 24); St. Paul's Episcopal Church, DeKalb (RC 55); First Lutheran Church, Rockford (RC 83); Salem Lutheran Church, Sandwich (RC 84); Trinity Lutheran Church, Mt. Morris (RC 104); and Wheatland-Salem United Methodist Church (RC 119).

See RC 311 of the Big Woods Congregational Church, a branch of the Batavia Church, for additional information.

Related Publications: Several local church histories can be found in the Center's reference book collection as well.