Methodist Episcopal Church of Marysville
Marysville’s Methodist Episcopal Church was built in 1886 by its congregation on land purchased from Thomas Cruse, who founded the town in 1876 around his Drum Lummon gold and silver claims. The church’s modest clapboard-sided frame and bell tower were erected during a period of heady growth. The Northern Pacific Railroad had reached Marysville earlier in the year, bringing with it a steady supply of machine-milled building materials. Crude cabins of rough-hewn lumber quickly gave way to more modern buildings. By the 1890s, the population reached 5,000, and Cruse’s mine, sold to English capitalists in 1882, was on its way to producing an astounding twenty million dollars in silver and gold. Abandoned in 1939, the church was near the point of collapse when it was bought in 1967 by John W. and Margaret C. Hollow of Helena. In the years since, the family has lovingly restored the church and many of its furnishings to their original simple grace. John W. Hollow, whose grandparents John E. O’Brien and Ellen O’Grady were married in Marysville in 1887, painstakingly reconstructed the windows in their original frames. Today, the church’s stark silhouette remains a favorite of painters and photographers.