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Cathedral on the Prairie

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Built more than one hundred forty years ago, it is a towering landmark in Andover, Illinois. Swedish Lutheran immigrants started construction on the Augustana Lutheran Church in 1867.

The men of the church were  required to donate their  services and help to construct the church. The exterior has five hundred thousand bricks.

All of the wood in the church is original. The pews were built by one of the member carpenters.

The original pulpit stands above the altar and the pipe organ is also original.

At one time, the parish served the Lutheran community, including the Quad Cities to Galesburg. People came by horse or on foot to worship at the church.

There are twenty stained glass windows in the church. The glass was made in Sweden.

Rev. Lars Paul Esbjorn was the first pastor. He later became the first President of Augustana College, then located in Chicago.

Today, a church member still rings the bell as a call to worship. The bell was placed in the spire in 1881.

Today, Augustana Lutheran Church is the only church in the village of Andover. A tribute to God, and the faith of the Swedish Lutheran immigrants who settled in Andover those many years ago.   

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