First Evangelical Lutheran Church Records, 1901-2012

Overview of the Collection

First Evangelical Lutheran Church (Idaho Falls, Idaho)
First Evangelical Lutheran Church Records
1901-2012 (inclusive)
1 file, ( )
Collection Number
OPVELCA7a2_38 (collection)
Collection contains the records of First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Idaho Falls, Idaho
Pacific Lutheran University, Archives and Special Collections
Archives and Special Collections
Pacific Lutheran University
12180 Park Avenue South
Tacoma, Washington 98447
Telephone: (253) 535-7586
Fax: (253) 535-7315
Access Restrictions

Collection is available for research

Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.Processing funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission

Historical NoteReturn to Top

A. Gunberg arrived from Provo, Utah and held the first meeting of interested people on March 21 1898 in Idaho Falls. Plans were made to organize a Lutheran Church on April 25, 1898 with the name “The Scandinavian Evangelical Lutheran Gustaf Adolphus Church.” By Christmas of 1900 they were in their own building on the present property. Thirty-five adults and twenty children gathered for the first annual meeting on January 2, 1899. On February 6, 1901 the congregation was admitted into the Augustana Synod. The first organ, purchased for $35,000 in 1899 is still in the church and used on special occasions.

The changeover from Swedish to English began around 1910, and in January of 1939 the congregation voted to construct a new church and to change the name to “First Evangelical Lutheran Church.” The new building was dedicated in September of 1941. In April of 1944 the congregation celebrated its 50th Anniversary with the burning of the mortgage. In the late 1940s an influx of people into the area caused the baptized membership to exceed 400. Growth in the area was a result of the Atomic Energy Commission’s new site in the desert west of the city.

In 1956 ground was broken for a new education wing, and dedication followed one year later. In January of 1960 the chancel area was renovated, and on the 75th Anniversary of the congregation (1973) the last mortgage was burned. Growth of the congregation continued until it became the largest of the twelve LCA congregations in Idaho.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This folder includes a 1968 directory, copy of a newspaper article regarding their 70th anniversary, original newspaper article, bulletin from the dedication and recital with the new organ (1969), a brief history of First Lutheran Church, 1985 congregation directory, supplemental information flyer, informational flyer from 1982, brief history bulletin from 1967, announcement and invitation to the installation service of Rev. Paul Hanson, bulletin from the 75th anniversary, 1981 annual meeting agenda, Pastor’s report, 1980 financial report, 1980 stewardship report, 1979 annual reports, First Evangelical Lutheran "family album," booklet for visitors to the church, 1983 church directory, 1983 annual report, 1987 annual report, 1984 annual program meeting, 1983 annual program meeting, 1985 annual program meeting.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Property rights reside with Archives and Special Collections Department at Pacific Lutheran University. Copyright resides with the creator of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to the University Archivist. The reader must also obtain permission of the copyright holder

Preferred Citation

From the First Evangelical Lutheran Church, Idaho Falls, Idaho, Records, OPVELCA7a2_38, Archives and Special Collections, ELCA Region I Archives, Pacific Lutheran University, 12180 Park Avenue South, Tacoma,WA 98447

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Location of Collection

Box 2 File 1

Acquisition Information

Transferred to ELCA Region I Archives. .

Related Materials

To search and view digitized images of congregations, visit our Digital Assets Website


Nesvig, Swanson, Nordquist, Emerson New Partners. Old Roots. Tacoma (Wash.) ALC, LCA, and ELC 1986

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Lutherans--Idaho--History
  • Population
  • Swedish language

Personal Names

  • Carlson, Reuben
  • Johnson, Karl
  • Peterson, A. L.
  • Samuelson, Carl
  • Berggren, Clifford
  • Ebb, Kenneth
  • Nyvall, J. W.
  • Anderson, A. G.
  • Bengston, Charles
  • Cornay, Luther
  • Cudmore, Larry
  • Gunberg, A.
  • Hanson, Paul K.
  • Lewis, Floyd
  • Martinson, A.
  • Nitz, Jack
  • Peterson, Walter
  • Sandeen, Enoch
  • Schmidt, Karl
  • Shipp, J.
  • Stromquest, Luther
  • Stutelberg, Tom

Corporate Names

  • Augustana Evangelical Lutheran Church
  • Lutheran Church in America
  • U.S. Atomic Energy Commission
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church -- History
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church -- Eastern Washington-Idaho Synod
  • First Evangelical Lutheran Church (Idaho Falls, Idaho)

Geographical Names

  • Provo (Utah)
  • Idaho Falls (Idaho)


  • Clergy