Before and during the Civil War our village was known as Houghton. Why the village was named Houghton is lost to history.
When Cpl. Anton Schap returned from the Civil War, he came to Houghton to live.
He changed the name from Houghton to Schapville.
In 1855 and 1856 the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church reports refer to our church as the “Zion Presbyterian Church.”
The deed for the church property bears the name, “Old School Presbyterian Church of Mill Creek.”
The deed for the manse property bears the name, “The First German Old School Presbyterian Church.”
“The Schapville Zion Presbyterian Church,” became our official name in 1925 when the church was incorporated.
Our Congregational History
In the 19th century Mennonites emigrated from Bavaria and Wuertemberg settling in Jo Daviess County because it reminded them of home.
They began worshipping in in various homes, moving to a log school house to accommodate the growing congregation, and then to a rock school house. When they outgrew the rock school house they decided to move worship to Schapville. The church was never part of the Illinois Mennonite Conference. They were unable to obtain a Mennonite pastor and finally turned to the Presbyterian Seminary in Dubuque. They provided student pastors.
In 1854 with 50 members under the Presbytery of Rock River built the log church in 1856 and it was called Zion Church, it stood directly behind our present church.
In 1886 the present church was built. The pointed arches and the openness of the sanctuary speak to a Gothic influence in its architecture.
In 1925 the church was incorporated and re-named the Schapville Zion Presbyterian Church.
In 1942 the painting of Christ was added in the chancel area. It was donated by the Ladies Aid Society, which is now known as Women’s Circle.
In 1948 the original clear windows were replaced with stain glass windows donated by the families of our congregation.
Through the years there have been additions and changes made to the church building. The sanctuary still reflects the original building.