Lot 132 of 435:
Letters from residents of Boulder City to Rev. William Robert King  

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Lot closed - Sold For (Includes Buyers Premium):$390
$300 - $500

Collection of letters from residents of Boulder City, Nevada to Rev. William Robert King of Grace Community Church


Boulder City, Nevada




37 manuscript letters and 4 original b&w photographs collected in a ring-bound notebook, (8vo), leather wrappers.

A collection of letters from Boulder City residents to Rev. William Robert King (Dr. King), thanking him for having the vision of bringing a church to Boulder City, and pushing forth to see it to fruition. Included are letters from the families of the construction workers on the Hoover Dam, as well as the workers themselves. Also present are typed letters from the first two pastors, and 4 original photographs from the time, of the church and related events. The heartfelt missives express gratitude for the presence of the church, and the positive impact it had upon the community as a whole. Of the Four included photographs, two are of the early church before any renovations or additions were added, The two other images are sepia toned from "Rally Day 1934." One photo shows numerous parishioners in a "Combined Church and Sunday School Service." While the other is captioned "Rally Day 1934, with 400 in attendance."

Grace Community Church and Boulder City have intertwined histories. Boulder City began as a construction town for the men and their families who built the mighty Hoover Dam in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River. Grace Community Church began as an inter-denominational Protestant religious work and was supported in April 1932 by members of the National Home Missions Council; Rev. William Robert King being a key figure in this organization. As the Great Depression unfolded, hopeful laborers descended on Las Vegas and set up camp in the surrounding desert for the chance to work on the project. Those who were hired eventually moved to Boulder City, a community specifically built six miles from the work site to house its employees working on the construction of the Bolder/Hoover dam project. Although Boulder City was initially slotted to be only a temporary town, a sense of community quickly began to develop. This handwritten book is full of letters to Rev. William Robert King (Dr. King), thanking him for having the vision of a church in Boulder City and pushing forth to make it come into fruition. Letters from the families of the construction workers on the dam and from the workers themselves. To include letters from the first two pastors, and 4 original photographs from that era.

Boulder City residents made friends with one another, went to dances, and even made long-term plans for the community. Whether they wanted it to or not religion played an important part in the lives of the unemployed. Many men were still looking for work and camped out around the Bureau of Reclamations Employment office in Las Vegas. Most of these men had no idea where there next meal would come from. Some, however, found food through salvation  One of the first things community members desired was a church. Church services were originally held in Anderson Mess Hall and Wilbur Square. In a show of multi-denominational support, members from seven different traditions cooperated to build the Grace Community Church in 1933, with William Robert King at the center of it all. One of the 37 letters in this album is from the original preacher "Pastor Tom," (Reverend Thomas Stevenson), a much loved and revered man, who in 1937 was struck and killed by a car right in front of the church.

The second pastor has also included a letter of gratitude and thanks. This is a typed letter from Rev. Harold H. Eymann and he served this church from 1938-1942 .With the nation at war Reverend Eymann felt called to serve as a military chaplain and left in 1942. Eymann's letter was written to Dr. King in March of 1941. This handwritten book is a chronicle of the building of a Dam, a town, and a church, and using workers from the Hoover Dam. The inception of the idea to build this church was headed by a Presbyterian minister and founder of Henry Kendall College (now the University of Tulsa), William Robert King  The workers on the dam actually helped to build the first church in Bolder City and used extra mortar from the dam to build the it. It was named Grace Community Church, and it was purposely non-denominational to encompass all who worked and lived here in Boulder City, basically a small community in the middle of no-where out in the desert.

Lot Amendments

Light wear to binding; occasional light wear or toning to contents; very good.

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