August 2, 2018

Plaza’s chapel found to be N.D.’s oldest


The Elders Part II: ‘Like a Fishhook Village’
BY HUNTER ANDES
bhg news service
The old Plaza Congregational Church, a museum since 1975, is the “new” oldest chapel in the state of North Dakota. According to the 1955 “North Dakota History” publication, the chapel was erected in 1880, and elders say it was designed by Architect and Fort Berthold Missionary Rev. Dr. Charles L. Hall. The building was originally a quarter mile outside Like a Fishhook Village.
Up until today, the assumption was Bread of Life in Bismarck was the oldest church in North Dakota. This church was formerly Saint George’s Episcopal Church, which is now owned by the North Dakota State Historic Society. It was completed in June of 1881.
However, the McLean County Independent discovered Rev. Hall’s ‘Ho Washte Chapel,’ which has called Plaza its home since 1906, is older. It was in that year the chapel moved 40 miles through the hills by horse and carriage to its present location.
Three books, one published by the U.S. National Park Service, the other published by Rev. Hall’s successor, the Rev. Harold Case, and the third published by the North Dakota State Historical Society, were among the literature that repeatedly reference the chapel’s completion four years after Rev. Hall’s arrival to Like a Fishhook Village in 1876.

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