The German Evangelical Reform Church was formally organized in October 1865. The parsonage, next door, was built in 1888, to fill the need for a residence for visiting ministers and later, a permanent minister. The land was purchased from Ann Twidney on August 13, 1888, for $51.00 for the .51 acre lot. The last official service in the church was the funeral for William Burger in 1942, who had served many years as Sunday School Superintendent.
The Betzenheimer family lived at the parsonage house all their lives, until Sis Betzenheimer/McKillips moved out around 2010. After returning to the island in the 1940’s, Sis carried on the tradition of care and preservation of the Old Stone Church. Because of that commitment, she was granted life use of the house. That adds up to almost 90 years of Betzenheimer residency. The house consists of seven rooms; three bedrooms up and one down, living room, dining room, kitchen, cellar and porch. Truly amazing - it has a cistern to collect water but no plumbing. The kitchen sink has a hand pump and there is an outhouse in the rear of the church.
In 2017 the Historical Assoc. set up a resale shop in the house, and for the first time, opened it up to visitors. This has proven very popular with visitors as they can score some great bargains and see what the house looks like, including that hand pump in the kitchen.
Here are some photos from when we opened in August 2017 - but - most of these items are gone already. We welcome donations (no textiles or cloth items though) and we encourage you to visit often, as items rarely last a week before they are sold.
The Resale shop is generally open when the museum is open, however, we can arrange for someone to meet you if you want to visit during our closed hours. Please call Jodie at 419-350-1082 or email us at KImuseum@msn.com.
HURRY - items truly do fly off the shelves!