In 1852, six years after a local mill was bought by two businessmen, the first religious service in the tiny lumbering town of Menomonie was conducted by Rev. Mayne, a Methodist Episcopal circuit rider minister based in Stillwater, Minnesota.
From 1854 to 1856, nondenominational religious services were conducted in the lumber company’s school by a Baptist who taught in the school, worked in the shingle mill, and preached.
In 1857, with the population over 1,000, the Methodist Episcopal Church Society was organized, the first organized religious group in town. It held services in the Knapp, Stout & Company school. After the Congregationalists organized in 1861, the Methodists and the Congregationalists alternated morning and evening services in the school.