Evenglow began in response to an obvious need. A retired Livingston County farmer’s wife was concerned at the number of retired people she knew living alone who craved friendship and social relationships.
Through her endowment for the future of others, Mrs. Ada Swords stewardship helped found a United Methodist Retirement Home that would be open to all regardless of religious denomination. Evenglow’s first home, a former Pontiac Hotel, was purchased and remodeled, and in October; 1958, opened its doors.
Growth followed rapidly. In 1960 plans were underway for the construction of the seven-story Evenglow Lodge. It was dedicated in 1963 and consisted of 89 one and two room units, with a 43 bed health center on the seventh floor.
In keeping with Evenglow’s ministry, in 1984 the adjacent two-story Tjardes Healthcare Center was completed. The original seventh floor was renovated to consist of seven independent living apartments.
Evenglow completed a major remodeling of all the public areas in the Lodge in 1995.
Due to increasing numbers of Alzheimer’s and dementia patients Evenglow, with the help of faithful contributors, built Evenglow Inn in 2001. The Inn is a 26 bed facility with specially trained staff to care for these conditions.