In the summer of 1837, a colony of six families arrived in Hocking County from the area around Illingen near Saarbrucken in what is now Germany. In all, the band of newcomers consisted of fifty souls. They began to clear and till the land, to build homes and, most importantly, to make provisions for their spiritual welfare.
Father Young began to minister in the Logan area in 1839 from St. Mary Church in Lancaster. He began to celebrate Mass among the German Catholics of Marion Township every seven weeks.
During Father Young's pastorate, the land for the Old Catholic Cemetery and church site, two and one-half miles north of Logan, was acquired. The land was purchased by the Bishop of Cincinnati on September, 7 1841, from John and Margaret Ucker for one dollar. This cemetery still exists and is located on Walnut-Dowler Road.
The enterprising Germans began to build a church in 1842 which was completed in 1843, being in size 56 by 38 feet. The church building and cemetery were dedicated by Bishop Purcell in 1848 and placed under the patronage of St. John the Evangelist. The pastor, whose residence was at St. Mary, Lancaster, celebrated the Eucharist every 6 weeks at St. John.
On July 26, 1858, a letter was sent to Bishop Purcell, with signatures of 99 of St. John parishioners, petitioning him to send a resident pastor to Logan. They stated that they would be able to support a pastor with an annual salary of $473.50, half of which would be payable upon arrival.
Property was purchased on north Market Street in Logan on January 31, 1859, for use of St. John Church. By 1861, a frame church, constructed by Francis Joseph Krieg, a parishioner, graced the hilltop of Logan. The building was located on the present site of the rectory.
The original colony of six families by now had expanded to three hundred persons in Logan, and the Catholic population in the County was over two thousand persons.
Ground was broken on September 28th, 1896 for a a new church. This new building, our present church home, is 97 feet by 55 feet with a tower that is 96 feet high. The church societies and parishioners donated the funds for the stained glass windows. The church was dedicated by Bishop Watterson on June 5th, 1898, with impressive ceremonies and a parade through Logan. The event was witnessed by three thousand visitors who arrived on special excursion trains. An Italian marble altar was added in 1907, a pipe organ in 1920, and in 1925 St. John Parochial School was opened.
St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church is a member of the National Registry of Historical Places.