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Lawrence Carl Anderson

 

Born April 17, 1892; Married June 16, 1915 (Esther Malm, d. Dec 4, 1970); Died December 9, 1974

Children: Dorothy Mae Anderson Clay, June 8, 1918; Thelma Rosalie Anderson Ferguson, June 26, 1921

 

Lawrence Anderson was born in Chicago on April 17, 1892, to Hannah and Victor Anderson,
both of Sweden.  On June 16, 1915, he was married to Esther Malm in Greely, Colorado. 
In 1922 he was elected to the Wyoming House of Representatives, but due to Estherís health,
and upon her doctorís advice, he resigned before his term was over and took Esther and their
two small daughters to San Diego.  Dorothy was 5 1/2 and Thelma 2 1/2 when they made the trip.

 

The first Sunday in San Diego they attended the Bethel Swedish Baptist Church, giving up all
thoughts of joining the "big" church down town, The First Baptist Church of San Diego
(a church then approaching 1200 members).

 

Lawrence was hired as a carpenter by one of the largest contracting firms of the city, the Trepte Co. 
After six months with Walter Trepte, Lawrence decided to build a building on his own.  He gave up
the magnificent salary of eight dollars a day and found a forty foot lot on a nice paved street which
he paid $750 for.   He finished his first house and negotiated the sale for  $5,700.00.

 

They had to move five times because of rental situations and it was decided that they must have
a home of their own, so plans were made with a private loan as well as a bank loan, and they soon
moved into a five room cottage of their own.

 

Lawrence opened his own business in 1924.  He built numerous homes, commercial and government
buildings in San Diego.  The most notable was the Sears store in Hillcrest, then the largest commercial
building in San Diego.

 

In 1936 he was named Chairman of the Swedish Committee for the CaliforniaPacific International Exposition.

 

Lawrence played a major role in the reorganization of the Christian Businessmen's Committee and the  opening
of the Christian Servicemenís Center in 1942.  This was his lifeís dream -- that servicemen could find Christ.

 

He was active in Bethel Baptist Church, which moved and became College Avenue Baptist Church, and served
for forty-five years as Sunday School Superintendent, teacher, deacon, a member of the Missions Board
and as Church Chairman.  He was named the first deacon emeritus of College Avenue Baptist Church in 1965.

 

Lawrence was, over the years, in addition to President of L.C. Anderson Co. Inc.:
            President of the Walter Gaines Home for Distressed Servicemen's Wives, Inc.
            President of the Philippine Mahogany Co.
            President of the Garnet Properties         

Moderator for Southwestern Assn of California Baptist Convention

Member of Executive Committee of Southern California Baptist Convention
Moderator of California Baptist Conference

President of Christian Businessmenís Committee of San Diego           

Member of Foreign Mission Board of the Baptist General Conference

 

As a second termer on the Foreign Mission Board he accompanied the Reverend John A. Wilcox on a survey trip
of several South American countries in 1954.  On the basis of their report the Conference entered Brazil.
           

Harold Goss, in his article in The Standard, wrote:

ďYet it is perhaps his home church that will always stand as his greatest monument
of achievement for Christ.  Considering Lawrence's deep affection for College Avenue
and the extent to which he is identified with all its activities, both remote and local,
the church could give him no more fitting title than: " Mr. College Avenue"

                                   
As his daughter, I can truly say that Dad always put Christ first, others second and himself third.

 

- Thelma Anderson Ferguson, 1984

 

 

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