May 2018  
Verse of the Day
Sanctuary Stained Glass Windows
The large Tiffany stained glass window at the front of the First Presbyterian Church of Alice Sanctuary and the side stained glass windows have a unique and interesting history. The following is a partial account of these windows taken from a document by A. A. Hinnant, Sr. to whom we will be eternally grateful.

When the Corpus Christi Presbyterians built a new church in 1901, these windows were given as memorials to this buildng and rested there from 1901 until 1929. The largest and most beautiful of the windows, the Tiffany Window, was given in memory of Reverend Hiram Chamberlain by his daughter, Mrs. Richard King, who was at that time the owner of the King Ranch. The Corpus Christi Presbyterian Church served the Presbyterian congregation until 1929 when it was taken down to make room for a new and larger church.

It was at this time, in 1929, that the windows were offered to the Presbyterian Church of Alice. When these windows were taken from the old Corpus Church in 1929, they were stored on a vacant lot and were in a state of disrepair. Mr. Caldwell of Corpus gathered the windows and pieces together and stored them in his little one car garage, letting his car sit outside. He notified Alice to come get their windows!

The Alice Session appointed two Deacons to go and get the windows, Mr. W. K. McMasters and myself. We were offered the loan and assistance of Mr. Puterbaugh and his cattle truck. Some of the window frames had rotted. There were holes punched in some of them and there were two wooden sugar barrels filled with stained glass pieces, some with the binding-lead still hanging.

We loaded the windows and returned to Alice and stored the windows in the basement of Mr. Brown Fuller's hardware store. All went well for a year or more, but Mr. Fuller closed his hardware store and a new tenant took over the building. Next we moved them to a mill warehouse of the Alice Cotton Seed Oil Mill.

All went well for several years and then sometime in the middle thirties the Alice area was blessed with a bumper cotton crop. The operating superintendent, Mr., Dan Scruggs, said he was tired of moving my junk windows around trying to make room for the seed.

The windows were then in a large, high, hip-roofed warehouse. We decided a platform could be made high up on the rafter braces and the windows could be hoisted up by block and tackle to this perch. Well, this was accomplished at the expense of much time and work. I breathed a sigh of relief and hoped the windows would rest in peace.

In about 1938, Mr. John Poldhamus, Chairman of the Building Committee, and the architect for our new Church building arrived to look at the windows. They asked me to get the windows down from their perch where they could look them over and make measurements. So we got our block and tackle rigged again and down they came. The warehouse, now being empty, we spread them out on the floor putting the large window together as it was composed of several smaller frames. After taking his measurements, the architect said the windows would have to be trucked to San Antonio for repair and re-building. I was very much relieved when, a few days later, a truck arrived, and the windows were loaded and departed for San Antonio.

The next time I was to see the windows they were installed in our new Church building and my skepticism immediately vanished as I gazed in reverential awe at these beautiful works of art. As I stood there, the thought came to mind that I was paid in full for the part I played in the preservation of these inspirational windows that could now be enjoyed by so many in the years to come.

Mr. Archie A. Hinnant, Sr.

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"Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God." - Matthew 5:8
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