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Salem German Presbyterian Church
The Salem German Presbyterian Church
The Salem Church was a small church located four miles north and two miles east of Gothenburg. The Church was organized on August 13, 1883, through a petition signed by 12 individuals. The first Elders were Henry Peters and Gottlieb Ballmer, both ordained on the 13th. The first Board of Trustees were Christian Brestel, Wilhelm Brestel, and Henry Peters.   
The Church was served by only three Pastors, Reverends F.H.W. Bruechert, C.H. Gravenstein, and A.M. Sheppard. After Reverend Sheppard left the Church was serviced by the minister from the First Presbyterian Church in Gothenburg until the Salem and First Presbyterian Churches merged on July 23, 1919.
There is no record of where the congregation met for the first few years. In 1885 the Church purchased land from William Brestel for the sum of $275 and built a small  church.   One record of the Church indicated that the person in charge of keeping the fire could not sit closer than 15’ from the fire, thus insuring that all in the Church were comfortably warm.
Land adjacent to the Church was utilized as a cemetery (Salem Presbyterian Cemetery) and five of the original 15 members of the church are buried there.  On average the Church consisted of 12 – 15 adult members and 20 to 40 children in Sunday School.
After consolidation with the First Presbyterian Church the small building was sold and moved from the property.  The cemetery remains and is maintained by members of the First Presbyterian Church.
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