UU History in the Mid-Columbia Area
The history of the Unitarians in the Hood River Valley has roots dating back to the turn of the century. The First Unitarian Society of Hood River was organized at the Town Hall under the leadership of Rev. W.G. Eliot, Jr. , with 33 charter members. They built a church at the corner of 9th and State in 1905 on land donated by charter member, E.L. Smith. By 1918 the Unitarians merged with the Congregational Church and the church building was sold to the Lutheran Church. Today the building stands at the same site, in use as a private residence.
Sixty-eight years later the Unitarian Univeralists established another congregation in the Mid-Columbia area. In 1986 a small group of individuals met in the home of Pam Morneault in White Salmon to organize and by October 1987 the Mid-Columbia Unitarian Universalist Fellowship established a charter and was officially recognized by the Unitarian Universalist Association. The fellowship has met in many different community buildings both in White Salmon and Hood River and currently meets at the Rockford Grange. Starting with 20 charter members, the fellowship was lay-led, but now has now grown to over 60 members. On October 4, 2009, the fellowship voted to hire a part-time minister.
For a more detailed history see the following presentation presented by charter member and church historian, Juliana Sandahl.
We also have an audio podcast of this presentation.