ARCHITECT: A. Drunding
On May 1, 1888, Rev. Father H. W. Grimme, of Big Rapids, took charge of the German & Irish Catholic congregation of Manistee, and steps were immediately taken to erect a church edifice. $7,000 was then allocated for the construction of a new church. A lot on Fifth street, at the end of Sycamore, was purchased at a cost of $3,000.
Architect A. Drunding of Chicago designed the building and C. H. Pelton and C. A. Sathern of Grand Rapids were awarded the contract bid.
The cornerstone of the new building was laid on September 2, 1888 and over two years later on December 21, 1890, Rt. Rev. Bishop H. J. Richter, of Grand Rapids, blessed the church under the name and the protection of the Guardian Angels.
60,000 bricks were required for the construction of the new Catholic Church. Some were ordered from nearby Onekama, some from Big Rapids, and the weather brick form Manitowoc, Wisconsin.
Many aspects of the church reflect its German and Irish heritage. One of the most visible features of the church is its 170 foot high spire. The spire was intended to represent a beacon and thus become a symbol of safety, protection, and homecoming for parishioners.
Some of the other features of the church are its carillon with a chime of 12 massive bells. The bells in the tower are played using a keyboard located in a a room in the choir loft. The church also has a turn-of-the-century pipe organ with 28 stops and 1,600 pipes.