Lodi (California, USA)
Lodi, California, is a city (pop. 20,000 in 1954; 57,000 in 2000) in the Central Valley, San Joaquin County, 40 miles south of Sacramento, the state's capital, and is one of the Mennonite communities in the valley noted for their fine fruits and diversified farming, located in one of California's fine cherry-growing areas. Nearly all of the 200 Mennonites in and around Lodi in the 1950s were of the Mennonite Brethren group and were employed in cereal processing, the steel industry, and the building trades.
The first Mennonites came to Lodi in 1907 from Harvey, North Dakota. The Mennonite element grew rapidly and in the early 1920s the Mennonite Brethren church, with a capacity of 350, was overflowing. Optimism ran high and a site was purchased for the possible location of a Mennonite Brethren college on the West Coast. Congregational difficulties, however, gave the Mennonites in Lodi some severe setbacks. In 1954, the Mennonite Brethren church, the only Mennonite institution in Lodi, had a membership of 110 and showed signs of growth.
The second Mennonite institution in the vicinity in the 1950s was the Victor Community Chapel, located three miles (five km) west of Lodi, a project of the Mennonite Brethren Home Mission Board of the Pacific District Conference. This work began in 1946 and attendance in 1954 was 75-100. The Victor community was originally owned and planned by Jacob Knoll, a prosperous Mennonite of Lodi.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, p. 385. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: Just, L. R. "Lodi (California, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 18 June 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/lodi_california_usa.
APA style: Just, L. R. (1957). Lodi (California, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 18 June 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/lodi_california_usa.