Pontoppidan Lutheran Church

Pontoppidan Lutheran Church, 1878-1893.

On December 14, 1877 a meeting was held in the home of G. Johnson to organize a Lutheran congregation in Fargo. The twenty-five charter members chose the name Pontoppidan Norwegian-Danish Evangelical Lutheran Congregation for their church. The name was changed in 1878 to the First Scandinavian Evangelical Lutheran Church in Fargo. It was changed again, only a month or so later, to Pontoppidan Scandinavian Evangelical Lutheran Church.

The foundation of the congregation's first church was laid in August 1878 at 415 3rd Street North. Christian T. Wold arrived in the spring of 1878 as the first pastor. The building was completed in the fall of 1879 but was lost in the fire of 1893.

A second church was built on the corner of 4th Avenue and 4th Street North (320 4th Street North). By the end of October 1893, the church was ready for use. That building survived until 1916. (The postcard is labeled "Norwegian Lutheran Church").

Pontoppidan Lutheran Church, 1893-1916.

In 1913 plans were implemented for a third building because the second building was too small, poorly ventilated and difficult to heat. A new site on the corner of 3rd Avenue and 4th Street North was purchased. The second building was sold in the spring of 1916 to the Western Newspaper Union. It was torn down by the company.

The third building (located in the 300 block of 4th Street North) was designed by Gilbert & Haxby, architects. It was dedicated in the spring of 1917, though services were held there beginning in the fall of 1916. The cornerstone on the current building says Norwegian Lutheran Church 1916, although there is no record that this was an official name. The photographic postcard below left from the 1920's is captioned as the Norwegian Lutheran Church.

A number of additions have been added to the church since that time. The present church is located at 309 North Fourth Street.

Pontoppidan Lutheran Church, 1916.