History of Methodism in Cabarrus County, submitted by Bill Furr
History of Central Methodist Episcopal Church, South
compiled by Mary Elkins Goodman and Mary Snead Boger
METHODISM IN CONCORD
Rev. David Derrick, preacher in charge of Charlotte circuit, preached occasionally in Rogers Church, now called Mt. Olivet, and sometimes in the court house during 1836 and 1837. In 1838 the Center circuit was formed, embracing Stanly, Cabarrus and a portion of Rowan. To this work Rev. Mr. Derrick was appointed, and continued to preach in the court house. He bought the lot known as the old Methodist church lot. This information was taken from a historical sketch written and read by Mr. C. G. Montgomery at the re-opening of Central Church after remodeling in 1882 under the pastorate of Dr. W. S. Creasy.
Organizing the First Methodist Church in Concord
“Concord Methodist Church was organized in 1838 under Rev. David Derrick, and put in Center circuit and belonged to the South Carolina Conference. Mr. Willis Elkins, who settled in Concord in 1837, reared in a Baptist home, was converted under the preaching and leadership of Rev. Mr. Derrick, accepted the Methodist doctrine and joined the little band of men and women who likewise had accepted the faith, and under the administration of Rev. Mr. Derrick the Church was formed and built in 1839. What a pleasure it would be to give the name of every charter member, but we can only say, they were a few but faithful.” Mr. Willis Elkins
Religious services were held in different homes of the little band of Christians while the Church was being built.
The First Church
The first Church, which was built in 1839, was a wooden structure and stood near the corner of Church and East Depot streets, just a plain one-room building. About one-third of this room was partitioned off for the use of the slaves, who worshiped with the whites.
This being before the use of oil and lamps, the church was lighted by candles set in wooden brackets on either side of the church, with two large brass candlesticks set on either side of the pulpit for the use of the preacher. At this early period of the Church, they had preaching once a month by the pastor. Mr. Elkins held religious service at least twice a month on Sunday evening for the slaves and all who cared to go. This church was in use until the close of 1860 when the congregation moved into the new church, which is a part of the present church.
Some Rules of Worship
They had class leaders and exhorters. A class leader was one who had oversight of the spiritual well-being of the members. The church was more strict in demanding obedience to her laws then than now. An exhorter was one who was licensed to expound the Scriptures and hold religious service in the absence of the pastor. Fasting was always observed on Friday before the quarterly conference, which was always a season of spiritual growth and they looked forward to it with pleasure and preparation.
Obedience to the strict church laws was a requisite for church membership. All candidates were on six months probation before being recognized as full church members. Tobacco, alcohol, work on the Sabbath, all were forbidden to Methodists.
Worship in Songs
The hymn was lined out, two lines at a time by the pastor, and sung by the congregation throughout the hymn. These were days when the tuning fork was in its glory. In the absence of the fork some sister or brother would pitch the tune. Mr. Elkins, who had a heavy bass voice and could not reach a high note, found it necessary very often to start the hymn, and always tried to pitch the tune to suit the congregation. On one occasion as he started a hymn, a young girl said to her companion, “Now listen to Mr. Elkins pitch that tune to the ceiling and catch it as it comes down.” Young people were young then as now. Up to this time no musical instrument had been used in the church. After the present church was built and became a station some of the members decided to have an organ. This happened in 1871. The idea of an organ in the church caused quite a sensation. Some thought it altogether out of place. To such an extent was the fight on, that when the majority carried for an organ one family left the church. The organ was bought. Mrs. Bruton, the pastor’s wife, took charge as organist and formed a choir.
The Gospel as Preached in the Olden Days
The gospel in the old days was not preached to represent much of the great love of God for man, as we hear it today, but more of God’s condemnation of sin, and the need of men fleeing from the wrath of God by conversion and confession of faith in the Son of God. Dr. Braxton Craven, president of old Trinity College, preached a sermon on hardening the heart again God many years ago which opened the eyes of some to their hardened condition and their need of Christ and made even the young to think with fear and trembling. The church was filled to the limit with the aisles filled with chairs. The hymn, “O For a Glance of Heavenly Day,” was read and commented on. This hymn made such an impression on one who was present that it was memorized while the sermon was forgotten. The hymn remains, showing the importance of the good old gospel hymn.
Revivals were held every year. The time limit of the pastors was two year. Sunday School was held in the early Church, the Blue Back Spellers being used for the beginner, the Bible for the Adults, later the catechism. Religious literature was much more scarce than now.
The Problem of a New Church
The problem was agitated and planned during the pastorate of Rev. A. G. Stacy in 1858 and 1859. The problem was that some of the citizens of Concord, then a small town, objected very seriously to the Methodists moving closer up into the heart of town. The objection was that the Methodists were too noisy in their worship and shouted too much. But the trustees of the church succeeded in getting the lot we now have. The deed was given by David Coleman to Josiah Bunday as trustee for the church, April 1860. Church trustees purchased from Daniel Coleman approximately 148 feet of land on the east side of North Union Street at a cost of $900.
The new church, which is the present church, though several times remodeled and enlarged, was built in 1860, under the pastorate of Rev. E. W. Thompson and Rev. P. L. Herman. Colonel Addison Weddington was the architect and builder. He was the grandfather of Mrs. G. Ed. Kestler. Mr. Nick Cook and Alfred Cook, of No. 4 Township, contracted and made the brick for the church, save a few which were hauled from Mt. Pleasant to finish it. Dr. Braxton Craven, president of old Trinity, the great mathematician, figured the dimensions of the church auditorium and gave us perfect acoustics.
The Civil War broke out and the church was not finished but it was so they could use it after the close of the war in 1865. The church was unfinished, in debt, and no wealth in the church at this time. The prospect of a better day seemed far off; the effects of the war were felt in the church as it was everywhere. Many who had made pledges could not meet them. Some never came back from the war. The debt had to be met. The trustees sold 33 feet of the lot to Mr. W. A. Smith for $200, and paid the debt. In December, 1868, Mrs. Ellen Foil bought the church lot on South Church Street for $800. This money was used to retire the church debt. In 1868 Rev. R. R. Pegues was sent to this charge. Seeing the church in great need he gave a handsome pulpit to the church. This pulpit was made by Mr. Noah P. Correll, a member of the church. These years after the war were years of struggle and sacrifice. We wish we could name every member who labored before and after the war. We can name only a few: Esq. J. L. Bundy, was a steward and trustee in the First Church, and perhaps a charter member. Mr. Noah P. Correll, Riley Barnhardt, David Stiller, Caleb Suther, Capt. J. M. Alexander, V. Wesley Kestler, Stafford Goodman, Mathias Winecoff, John Winecoff, Henderson Winecoff and others whom we cannot now recall. These were leading men in the church some years before and after the war. In these early days of the church the women had no active work and there was no Epworth League for young people.
At the annual conference December 1869, this circuit was transferred from the South Carolina Conference to the North Carolina Conference, and Concord Church was made a station in 1870. In 1871 the first district conference was held in Concord Church, presided over by Bishop George Foster Pierce.
Getting Ready for the Conference
District Conference was one of the most important affairs of the early church. For four days the local congregation plus interested people from as far away as 30 miles crowded the sanctuary to hear the powerful sermons of Bishop Pierce. At the end of this great revival more than 40 new members were received into the church.
Mrs. Bruton with her young enthusiastic choir getting busy selecting good and appropriate music and practicing to be ready for the great occasion. The organ was moved up in the gallery to be out of the way of the conference. The hour arrives. All are in their respective places. Conference opens with Bishop Pierce in the chair.
The Choir Gets a Shock
The Bishop rises, gives out a hymn, and announces that they would dispense with the organ on this occasion. The situation of the choir can be felt as well as imagined.
An outlet for the strained nerves of the choir. An elderly lady who was opposed to the organ slapped a young man friend, who sat right in front of her, in the back to draw his attention, saying “I knew the Bishop would be against that organ.”
This organ problem is typical of some of the problems of the early church to advance and broaden. Everything quieted down. The hymn was sung and the bishop opened the conference with a great sermon. This conference has gone down through the history of the church. Bishop Pierce’s spiritual preaching awakened the church, and a great spiritual wave swept through he church, followed by the greatest revival ever held within her sacred walls. Upward of forty were received into the church. The meeting lasted a few days after the conference closed. Only one other revival was like unto it, held in 1876 or 1877 by Rev. H. P. Cole, one of our most beloved pastors of the day long ago. Again the church had a large increase of members.
In the latter part of the year 1869 and the early part of 1870 the church took on new life, and grew rapidly, both in membership and material wealth. Coming into the church at this time were Judge W. J. Montgomery, his father, Dr. John H. Montgomery and his family, Mr. J. M. Odell and his family, Mr. K. L. Craven, Dr. W. H. Lilly and family and others the writer cannot recall. These members were strong and loyal, making a great asset to the progress of the church. And so we would go on and on naming the strong men and good women who have come into the church and helped to make Concord a light that cannot be hid.
Many of them we all know for they are still with us. Some have answered the last call, and received their reward. In May 1888 Mr. D. B. Coltrane and family united with Concord Church. It is needless to try to express in words what this loyal family has meant to the church. Mr. Coltrane has been chairman of the board of stewards for the last twenty-two years and the lamented Mrs. D. B. Coltrane was the main factor in the organization of the Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society in the church which was organized in 1888. So we give to her the endearing name “Mother of Missions in Concord Church.”
The children’s work was organized in 1893, the young people in 1903. Mrs. D. B. Coltrane was President from 1889 to June 1911. She served twenty-two years. The following ladies have held the office to the present time 1929:
Mrs. W. C. Houston – three terms, eight years.
Mrs. W. D. Pemberton – two terms, four years.
Mrs. L. D. Coltrane – one term, two years.
Mrs. W. F. Goodman – one year.
Mrs. Ernest Hicks – two years
Mrs. J. F. Dayvault – two years
Mrs. W. C. Houston is serving the third term in 1929.
This society has kept Miss Lelia Judson Tuttle in the foreign field for twenty years.
In 1882 improvements to the church included slate shingles to replace the wooden roof, new oil lamps and new furnishings for the sanctuary.
In 1882 the church was covered with slate, and remodeled. Mrs. Columbus Mills gave the pulpit, pulpit Bible, furniture and pulpit carpet and extra work around the altar. The handsome hymn books were given by our pastor, Rev. W. S. Creasy. All the lamps by that noble Christian gentleman, the Late Mr. Julian S. Carr, of Durham. The pulpit was donated by Rev. R. R. Pegues. The pulpit furniture given by Mrs. Mills was set aside at the remodeling in 1901 while the church was being remodeled. In 1901 our preaching service was held in the Lutheran Church, the congregation being without a pastor in this time, and our Sunday School in the Baptist Church.
Official Board of Central Church 1882
W. S. Black, P.E.; W. S. Creasy, P.C.; W. J. Montgomery, chairman; C. G. Montgomery, J. M. Alexander, Dr. W. H. Lilly, K. L Craven, M. L. Moore, W. R. Odell. Trustees: W. J. Montgomery, C. G. Montgomery and Ed. D. Perry. Superintendent of the Sunday School: C. G. Montgomery. Committee appointed to repair church: C. G. Montgomery, W. R. Odell, T. W. Smith. Later J. M. Odell and W. J. Montgomery were added to the committee.
Rev. J. A. B. Fry Was Pastor in 1901
In 1901 when the church was enlarged and done over, the church bought a new pulpit, communion table, pulpit furniture, and a flower stand. The ladies’ Aid Society carpeted the church. The Epworth League gave the chandeliers, and Lawrence Loomis, of New York, presented thirty-five Oxford Bibles to Central Church. These gifts to the church were removed and are used elsewhere in the church at the last remodeling in 1929. Up to 1891 our church was called Concord Station Church. At the last quarterly conference, October 5, 1891, the name Central was adopted.
A major addition and remodeling program was undertaken in 1901. A bell tower was built and a Sunday School room, prayer meeting and church parlor were added to the sanctuary.
Official Board of Central Church 1901
Dr. W. W. Bays, P. E.; Rev. J. A. B. Fry, P.C. Board of Stewards and Trustees: J. M.
Alexander, chairman; W. J. Montgomery, Dr. W. H. Lilly, D. B. Coltrane, District Steward, K. L. Craven, D. P. Dayvault, J. L. Hartsell, Recording Steward; J. B. Sherrill, D. J. Bostian, Treasurer, D. D. Johnson, M. J. Freeman, Steward and Trustee, A. S. Dayvault Trustee, W. R. Harris, Dr. W. C. Houston, Secretary. Superintendent of the Sunday School, W. R. Harris. Building Committee: D. B. Coltrane, W. C. Houston, Dr. W. H. Lilly, D.P. Dayvault and J. A. B. Fry.
In 1923 again the church was enlarged under the pastorate of Rev. W. A. Jenkins. A two-story addition was added to the rear of the church giving us ample room for all department Sunday School work. This insures our church adequate room for years to come.
In 1929 the church was remodeled and beautified and the debt of 1923 cancelled under the pastorate of Rev. R. M. Courtney.
Donations to the Church
The organ was given by Mr. and Mrs. C. A. Cannon as a tribute of love to Mr. and Mrs. D. B. Coltrane, parents of Mrs. Cannon. The communion chairs by Mrs. Robert E. Jones. The pulpit was give by Mrs. John W. Cline in loving memory of her husband. The collection plates were given by Mrs. Ernest Hicks and Harvey E. Cline in loving memory of their father John W. Cline. The communion table was given by Mrs. J. B. Sherrill, sacred to the memory of her father, Judge W. J. Montgomery. The tri-seat given by T. W. Smith, Jr., was a tribute of love to his parents, Rev. and Mrs. T. W. Smith. The Bible, a gift from Mrs. W. F. Goodman in memory of her father, Willis Elkins. The kneeling cushion for the altar by Mrs. H. P. Guffy. With that perseverance that says, “It can be done, it shall be done,” Mrs. C. M. Ivey for 1926-1927, Mrs. Ernest Hicks 1928-1929 superintendent of local work, with the cooperation of that noble band of Christian workers in Central Church called The Woman’s Missionary Society, with Mrs. W. C. Houston, president, whose life is holy consecrated to the missionary work, abetted by her good husband, Dr. W. C. Houston. They two, as one, have been a tower of strength both spiritually and financially to the missionary work as well as to the church. Can you see the visions with Mrs. Ivey and Mrs. Hicks, our noble local superintendents for the last four years with the full support and cooperation of the society. Is it any wonder that the vestibules of the Church were laid in tile in 1927 and the goal of 1928 and 1829 reached. A handsome new carpet for the church given by the local department of the Woman’s Missionary Society. The amount spent for the church and improvements in the parsonage for 1929 was $3,213.95. Besides needed gifts to the parsonage by individual members.
Bishop E. D. Mouzon, Presiding Bishop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Charlotte, N.C.
Rev. H. C. Sprinkle, Presiding Elder . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Salisbury, N.C.
Rev. R. M. Courtney, Pastor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 North Union Street
Miss Lelia Judson Tuttle, Missionary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Soochow, China
D. B. Coltrane, Chairman
A. S. Webb, Vice-Chairman
A. F. Goodman, Secretary-Treasurer
H. W. Blanks
W. F. Goodman
J. B. Sherrill
J. E. Davis
S. G. Hawfield
C. B. Wagoner
W. J. Glass
J. W. B. Long
J. Lee Crowell, Jr.
Dr. J. A. Hartsell
M. F. Ritchie
Dr. W. R. Fisher
C. M. Ivey
E. C. Turner
A. F. Hartsell
Dr. W. D. Pemberton
J. Lee Crowell
Dr. W. C. Houston
Dr. J. E. Smoot
A. J. Dayvault
R. L. Miller
B. R. Craven
E. L. Hicks
A. M. Shinn
I. I. Davis
G. C. Love
W. B. Ward
CHAIRMEN OF COMMITTEES
Finance, A. F. Goodman
Heat-Light-Janitor, A. J. Dayvault
Church Property, A. F. Hartsell
Missionary, Dr. T. M. Rowlett
Ushers, A.F. Hartsell
Children’s Home, L. D. Coltrane, Jr.
Efficiency and Extension, W. B. Ward Music, Dr. T. M. Rowlett
TRUSTEES OF CHURCH PROPERTY
J. Lee Crowell, Chairman, A. S. Dayvault, A. F. Hartsell, G. C. Love, J. L. Hartsell, Dr. W. C. Houston, Dr. J. E. Smoot
SUNDAY SCHOOL ORGANIZATION
Superintendent . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . J. E. Davis
Assistant Superintendent . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . S. G. Hawfield
Secretary-Treasurer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dr. W. R. Fisher
Superintendent Cradle Roll . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mrs. R. L. Miller
Superintendent of Beginners . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Miss Anna Strider
Superintendent of Primaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mrs. S. G. Hawfield
Superintendent of Juniors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Miss Janie Klutz
Superintendent Intermediates and Seniors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mrs. H. S. Williams
Superintendent of Adults . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . S. G. Hawfield
Superintendent Home Department . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mrs. A. S. Dayvault
Elizabeth Caton, President
Hubert Turner, Vice-President
Hiram Caton, Secretary-Treasurer
The pastor of the first five years was taken from Mr. C. G. Montgomery’s sketch for which we are indebted to Mrs. C. G. Montgomery, also to Mr. G. Ed. Kestler for the following facts of the church history. On December 18, 1868, the trustees of the church, Willis Elkins, Daniel Bangle, W. A. Willeford, J. M. Alexander, M. M. Winecoff, W. S. Holton and C. P. Cox sold to Ellen Foil, an acre of land adjoining Church Street for $800. This was the old church lot near the cotton platform. On January 1, 1885, the trustees of Central Methodist Church, namely C. G. Montgomery, Dr. W. H. Lilly, J. M. Alexander and K. L. Craven sold to A. H. Propst the lot where Mrs. John P. Allison now owns for $2,000 and Capt. Propst for the same sum built the present parsonage of the church. This parsonage was used as a residence until 1937 when a new parsonage was built on Washington Lane. W. B. Ward was Chairman of the Parsonage Building Committee and E. C. Kluttz was the builder. The former parsonage was used for Sunday School classes and church offices until its demolition in 1959, prior to the erection of the Educational building, completed in 1960. During World War II, part of the building was used as headquarters for a Red Cross Volunteer group. Under the pastorate of the Rev. W. A. Jenkins in 1923 a two-story educational building was added onto the back of the sanctuary. And, in 1929 the interior of the building was again remodeled. In 1929, property of the church was worth some $100,000. From Central there sprung up Forest Hill Church, Epworth Church and most of the other churches of this creed. Just recently all the debt of the church was arranged by pledges and Mr. D. B. Coltrane, for many years the leader and one of the most prominent church workers in the State, paid over $5,000 toward the liquidation of the debt. By 1929 Central Methodist Church had a roster of 441 members. The budget per year amounts to $8,065.00.
This brings to a close some of the early and later history of the church as best we can gather it from memory, as no records of the early church could be found. We are sorry we cannot give the names of all the charter members. We know this history is not perfect, nor full as these facts of church history was gathered from W. F. Elkins and John R. Elkins, who were brought up in the Sunday School and worshipped in the first Church and are now the oldest living members who joined the present Central Church, whose early history was handed down to them by their father, Willis Elkins.
CHAIRMEN OF BOARD OF STEWARDS
The following members have served as Chairman of the Board of Stewards: Judge W. J. Montgomery, Capt. J. M. Alexander, Dr. W. H. Lilly, Dr. D. D. Johnson, and Mr. D. B. Coltrane. Mr. R. A. Brower was a faithful and efficient Treasurer for ten years.
SUNDAY SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENTS
W. R. Harris
J. M. Alexander
Robert S. Wheeler
C. G. Montgomery
J. L. Crowell
W. R. Odell
Howard L. Collie
D. B. Coltrane
J. E. Davis
L. D. Duval
S. G. Hawfield
Mrs. D. R. Bruton
Mrs. W. R. Harris
Mrs. I. L. Craven
Mrs. R. A. Brower
Miss Kate Alexander
Robert P. Benson
Miss Ida Garmon
Miss Nell Herring
Miss Juanita Coltrane
Mrs. Victor Means
(Read by C. G. Montgomery at he Re-opening of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in Concord, November 18th, 1883.)
In 1835, there stood at Rogers, near the site of Mt. Olivet Church in this county, where we now have a large and interesting and prosperous congregation, an old log cabin, used as a schoolhouse and church, in which, according to our information, the first Methodist preaching was done in Cabarrus County. Here the Rev. David Derrick, preacher in charge of Charlotte Circuit, preached occasionally.
In 1826-1837 he sometimes preached in the Court House in Concord.
In 1838 the Center Circuit was formed, embracing Stanly, Cabarrus and a portion of Rowan County, extending as far as the Hatter Shop, in the latter county. The Rev. D. Derrick was appointed to this work and continued to preach at times in the Court House here; during the year he purchased the site known as the old Methodist Church lot. It is said that he tried then to purchase the location on which this church now stands, but the man who owned it refused to sell it to him.
The old Church was built in 1838-1839. In 1839 Rev. P. G. Bowman was preacher in charge, under whose ministry Willis Elkins was brought to Christ, and into our church. What a blessing Willis Elkins has been to religion and Methodism in Concord cannot be estimated by man. He has been a Godly and exemplary man faithful and dutiful in all the relations of life, ever watchful and zealous to promote the interest of his Master, and beloved church which he has so well served as class leader, steward, trustee and exhorter. He has been a steward since 1839, with the exception of a short time once, when he moved from town. He will have many stars in his crown of rejoicing, when he reclasps the hands of Rev. David Derrick, and other faithful beloved pioneers of our beloved Methodism in Cabarrus, in that “Land of Pure Delight, where Saints Immortal Reign.”
In 1840 Rev. Abel Hoyle was preacher in charge. He was followed in 1841 by Rev. Simon Jones; in 1842 by Rev. Benjamin Hamilton, in 1842 by Rev. Benjamin Hamilton, in 1843 by Rev. Alfred Richardson, Davis and Allen Huckaby, in 1844 by John A. Tarant. W. T. Harris, Joseph Parker.
In 1845 by J. H. Zimmerman and Daniel McDonald, in 1846 by J. H. Zimmerman and Wm. C. Clark, Rev. P. M. Foster was Presiding Elder in 1845-1846. In 1847 Rev. Jack Bradley was the preacher in charge. In 1848-1849 Rev. Wm. C. Patterson, and in 1850 Rev. W. L. Pegues, in 1851 Rev. S. D. Laney, in 1852-1853 Rev. W. S. Haltam, in 1854 Rev. Paul F. Kistler. Rev. H. H. Durant was Presiding Elder in 1847-1848 and in 1853-1854. Rev. P. F. Kistler was preacher in charge in 1855, in 1856 Rev. J. L. Shuford. David Derrick was Presiding Elder in 1855-1856. In 1857-1858 Rev. John Watts was preacher in charge; in 1859 Rev. A. G. Stacy, in 1860 Revs. E. W. Thompson and P. L. Hermon were preachers in charge, with Rev. S. H. Brown, Presiding Elder. Rev. H. C. Parson was Presiding Elder from 1857-1860.
In 1860 Rev. E. W. Thompson, one of the preachers on the circuit, procured the site on which our church now stands, the very spot where the Father of Methodism in our town, Rev. David Derrick, desired first to locate the building just 24 years before. The foundation of this Church was laid in 1860, and in 1860-61 the walls went up, and the building put in condition to use as a Church. It has been improved from time to time until the present. In 1862-63 Rev. L. Wood was preacher in charge, and Rev. S. H. Brown Presiding Elder. In 1864 Concord was first made a station, but only continued for one year. Rev. James Stacy was preacher in charge, Rev. Charles Taylor Presiding Elder.
In 1865 returned to circuit, with Revs. Louis Scarboro and J. T. Kilgo, G. W. Gatlin preachers in charge; F. M. Kennedy Presiding Elder. In 1867 Rev. M. C. Davis preacher in charge; F. M. Kennedy presiding Elder. In 1867 Rev. M. C. Davis preacher in charge, F. M. Kennedy presiding Elder, followed in 1868-69 by Rev. R. R. Pegues preacher in charge. Rev. F. M. Kennedy was Presiding Elder from 1866-1870.
Rev. R. R. Pegues made the Church a present of our handsome pulpit. It was made by Brother Noah P. Correll. In 1870 Rev. Samuel Leard was preacher in charge, with Rev. W. S. Black presiding Elder. In 1871 Rev. D. R. Bruton was appointed to Concord Station. With his wise and prudent management and zealous and faithful work, though few in numbers, and possessing but little of this world’s goods, we managed to struggle through our infancy as a station. The Church received several valuable accessions in 1871 during a great revival, which was begun while Bishop Pierce was conducting the first District Conference ever held in Concord. He preached daily for four consecutive days. He was then in the prime of life, vigorous and strong. Rev. James Reid, Rev. N. F. Reid, D. D., and others were also present and we have never heard such preaching in our Church in Concord. Bishop Pierce’s fame spread with wonderful rapidity, and though only here for four days, men were present for the last two days of his visit, who had traveled twenty-five, thirty and some as far as forty miles by private conveyance. He left the altar crowded with penitents after receiving several into the Church. This revival continued for several days, and was conducted by Rev. D. R. Bruton, preacher in charge, assisted by Rev. W. S. Black, Presiding Elder, and Rev. A. W. Mangum. Upwards of forty were received into the Church. Brother Bruton continued to serve the Church as preacher in 1872-1873 and 1874. Rev. W. S. Black was Presiding Elder until 1874, when Rev. J. S. Nelson was first made presiding Elder and sent to the Charlotte District.
WOMEN’S FOREIGN MISSIONARY SOCIETY
This work being the greatest factor for our women and children, for spiritual growth, religious training, and service, the writer regrets that she cannot give more space to this work, for it would be in keeping with the spirit of our Society to name every member, and her activities, for many have filled the office of Corresponding Secretary, Agents for The Voice, and officers in the Circle and all have been faithful, liberal, with time, talent and substance, for the Kingdom of God, obedient to our Lord’s last command, “Go, Ye,” Matt. 28:19-26. Prior to the organization of the Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society, a collection for missions was taken in the Church and Sunday School during the year and the work of missions kept before the Church.
The Women’s Foreign Missionary society of Central Church, Concord, North Carolina, was organized in 1888. Mrs. D. B. Coltrane was elected President 1889 and served faithfully 22 years. She resigned January 1911. Mrs. W. C. Houston was elected President February 1911, and served until March 1915, when on account of ill health she resigned. Mrs. D. B. Coltrane was again elected President but on account of her own health declined the honor but accepted the office President Pro-tem until the office could be filled and was still serving when she was called to her great reward June 1st, 1915.
In 1893 Mrs. Coltrane and Mrs. W. H. Leith organized the Children’s Society called Light Bearers. In 1903 Mrs. D. B. Coltrane organized the Golden Links. Truly she lived up to her ideal of a true Christian, that the road to Heaven was the missionary route.
At the June meeting 1915, Mrs. W. D. Pemberton was elected President and served until February, 1917, having to resign because of illness. Mrs. L. D. Coltrane was elected President and served until the close of 1918, followed again by Mrs. W. D. Pemberton, who served 1919 and 1920. Again, Mrs. W. C. Houston was elected President serving 1921-1922. At the beginning of her term a plan was adopted by the Society to organize into Circles. Also, Mrs. L. D. Coltrane made a move that no officer should hold office longer than two years, this move being carried and this law is still in force.
The Society was formed into three Circles, the Young People joining the adult society at this time made four Circles. Each Circle with its leader was to meet once a month with a get-together meeting once a quarter, presided over by the President, each circle in turn acting as hostess to the get-together meeting. Names of Circles: Miriam Coltrane, after our first beloved President; Lelia Tuttle, after our own representative in China; Central, after our beloved Church; last but by no means least, the Laura Harris, after Mrs. W. R. Harris who had largely the early training of most of these young women who formed this circle. A fifth Circle was organized in 1928, called the Jubilee Circle, this name in honor of 50 years of Women’s Missionary work of Southern Methodism.
Our Own Missionary
In 1909 Miss Lelia Judson Tuttle was accepted by the Woman’s Board of Foreign Missions for work in the foreign field. Through the special effort of Mrs. W. C. Houston the Women’s Missionary Society paid her expenses through a year at Scarritt and then adopted her as our Missionary, and for 20 years she has been our representative in China.
The following ladies have served as Presidents on the basis of two years:
President, Mrs. W. F. Goodman, 1923, who served one year; resigned because of illness.
President, Mrs. Ernest Hicks, 1924.
President, Mrs. J.F. Dayvault, 1926.
President, Mrs. W. C. Houston, 1928.
In 1908 Mrs. P. T. Durham organized our first Home Missionary society, acting as President until 1911. Mrs. F. J. Haywood was elected President for 1912.
In 1912 the Home and Foreign were united becoming one great Missionary Society.
In 1902 the study of missions was taken up, the President teaching it at the regular monthly meeting.
In 1911 the study of Missions was first organized with regular study classes by Mrs. W.
C. Houston. The Ladies Aid Society was our first Society in the Church. Many who were loyal and faithful in this department have gone to their reward. One of our charter members in both societies, Mrs. J. A. Kimmons, was treasurer in the Aid for many years. In 912 the Ladies Aid became a department of the Women’s Missionary Society, but still held separate meetings monthly. Mrs. W. R. Harris, Mrs. F. B. McKinne, Mrs. M. L. Marsh, Mrs. H. P. Guffy, Mrs. R. P. Benson, and perhaps others who were loyal and faithful in this local work have moved to other places, so our loss was gain to others.
In 1923 another change was made adopting the Committee plan, one member out of each
Circle forming a Committee to look after the Church and Parsonage under the leadership of the Superintendent of local work. Since 1912 the following ladies have acted as Superintendent of local work:
1912 – Mrs. G. Ed. Kestler, served two years.
1915 – Mrs. Marshal Mabrey, served one year.
1916 – Mrs. W. F. Goodman, served five years.
Mrs. W. D. Pemberton, Mrs. Ben R. Craven, Mrs. C. M. Ivey, Mrs. Ernest Hicks
Social Service work in this department since 1912– Mrs. G. Ed. Kestler, Mrs. Grover Love.
Mrs. John K. Patterson has been a strong force in this work for years; Mrs. L. L. Maulden, Mrs. A. M. Shinn and Mrs. A. H. Propst.
1838 – Officers of Women’s Foreign Missionary Society – 1929
Treasurer : No record found for the first ten years. Miss Mary Montgomery, 1898. Miss Lida Smith, 1899, Mrs. A. S. Dayvault, 1900. Served 22 years with that loyalty that is seldom if ever surpassed. Mrs. W. C. Houston, Miss Jenn Coltrane, Mrs. F. J. Haywood, Mrs. J. C. Bodenheimer.
Recording Secretary: Mrs. J. B. Sherrill, 1898, served four years; Mrs. F. B. McKinne served 3 years; Mrs. W. J. Glass served 7 years; Mrs. W. D. Pemberton, Mrs. L. D. Coltrane, Mrs. J. F. Dayvault, Mrs. Ben R. Craven, Mrs. H. S. Williams, Mrs. J. W. Pike, Several ladies have served twice or more.
Mission Study Class organized 1911. Leaders – Mrs. W. C. Houston assisted by Mrs. T. W. Smith; Mrs. W. D. Pemberton, Mrs. W. J. Glass, Mrs. G. Ed. Kestler, Mrs. J. F. Dayvault, Mrs. A. J. Dayvault, Mrs. Ernest Hicks, Mrs. F. J. Haywood, Miss Janie Klutz, Mrs. L. D. Coltrane. Several of these ladies have served twice.
Circle Leaders – Mrs. W. M. Fisher served six years in different Circles; Mrs. W. D.
Pemberton, Mrs. L. D. Coltrane, Mrs. A. M. Shinn, Mrs. D. L. Bost, Mrs. G. A. Batte, Mrs. W. F. Goodman, Mrs. R. A. Brower, Mrs. A. H. Propst, Mrs. Ernest Hicks, Mrs. J. W. B. Long, Mrs. R. E. Jones, Mrs. G. Ed. Kestler, Mrs. Ben r. Craven, Mrs. W. C. Houston.
The Light Bearers organized in 1893 – 38 members. First Lady’s manager, Mrs. D. L. Bost, who served until 1898, when Mrs. W. R. Harris was appointed in 1899. In 1900 the Society with 60 members, was divided, forming two divisions. The younger children, called Light Bearers, the older children called Children Junior, but still children’s work under two leaders.
Ladies’ Manager Light Bearers – Mrs. R. A. Brower 1900; Mrs. J. K. Patterson 1902; Mrs. W. R. Harris 1903.
Ladies’ Manager Children Junior – Mrs. M. B. Stickley, Mrs. W. R. Harris, Mrs. W. J.
In 1900 through 1903 Mrs. J. A. B. Fry was assistant to both Societies. At the close of 1903 the older children were organized into the Golden Links and reported at the women’s Missionary Conference in 1904, Mrs. E. K. McLarty as Superintendent with 12 members. The Baby Roll was then formed. Mrs. W. R. Harris was elected lady Manager, and served until 1910, when she moved to Asheville. In 1911 Mrs. D. B. Coltrane assisted by Mrs. J. E. Smoot served. In 1912 Mrs. J. E. Smoot took charge and served to the close of 1917, followed by Mrs. I. I. Davis, Mrs. J. F. Dayvault, Mrs. G. Ed. Kestler, Miss Janie Klutz, Mrs. J. C. Bodenheimer, Mrs. J. W. Pike.
Superintendent, Mrs. J. Lee Crowell, Jr. again, the work was divided in 1928. Primary Division and Junior Division; Primary Children:
Lady Manager: Mrs. S. G. Hawfield; President, Ellen Sherrill; Vice-President, Eleanor
Howard; Secretary, Jewel Warren; Nancy Womack, Merrill Courtney, Harold Hawfield, Jesse Pike, Evelyn Shinn, Virginia Jones, Ruth Davis, Felix Barnhardt, Katherine Lang, Katherine Raiford, Maxine Weatherly, Lillian Mauldin, Betrice Kestler Phil Raiford.
Children Junior: Miss Lucy Hartsell, Leader and Treasurer; President, Glenn Hawfield;
Secretary, Mary Dell Long; Billie Pike, Rebecca Bodenheimer, Ora Lee Shinn, Nancy
Howard, Lillian Batte, Lillian Miller, Jane Ivey, Laura Jane Thompson, Edward Davis, Bill Hawfield, Victor Means, James McKay, Rodger Barnhardt, Charles Harris, Jay Harris.
Belongs to Children, Baby Roll: Lady Manager, Mrs. J. Lee Crowell, Jr., Robert E. Jones, Jr., Lucile Cobb Smoot, W. A. Cline J. W. Cline, Mary Iris Goodman, Estelle Lucy Kestler, Fred Kestler, Jr., Jane Kestler Bell, Camilla Madge Bogle, Euna Lynn McBride, James Carson Bodenheimer, Edna Aileen Turner, Kenneth Adolphus Griffin, Robert Frank Smith, Robert Raiford, Brice J. Willeford, Jr.
Golden Links – members 12, organized 1903.
In 1912 – Young People
In 1922 Smoot Missionary Society: Lady Managers – Mrs. E. K. McLarty in 1904, followed by: Mrs. W. Dl. Pemberton, Mrs. R. A. Brower, Mrs. P. T. Durham, Mrs. D. L. Bost.
In 1921 this Young People’s Society came into the Adult Society and the Smoot Missionary Society was organized under the leadership of mrs. J. W. B. Long, 1922.
Smoot Missionary society: Superintendent – Miss Mary Phifer Pemberton 1923, Miss Alma Goode, Mrs. J. Lee Crowell, Jr., Miss Jenn Coltrane, Miss Mary Donnell Smoot, Mrs. Jacob Stirewalt for 1929.
Membership: President Frances Bodenheimer; Vice-President Mary McKay, Treasurer;
Caroline Ivey, Secretary; Elizabeth Caton, Catherine Davis, Mary Elizabeth Davis, Minnie Hill Davis, Nancy Dayvault, Virginia Dayvault, Dorothy Hartwsell, Albert Howard, William Kestler, Robert Miller, Elizabeth Odell, Nancy Pike, Fred Thompson, Ruth Thompson, Ruth Turner, John Hugh Williams, Marie Caton, Mary Houise Means, Frances Howard, James Batte, Margaret Caton, Violet Turner, Hilda Heilig.
Membership 1929 Miriam Coltrane Circle
Leader: Mrs. J. W. B. Long; Mission Treasurer, Mrs. A. S. Dayvault; Local Treasurer, Mrs. J. P. Query; Secretary, Mrs. J. B. Linker, Mrs. G. A Batte, Mrs. W. D. Pemberton, Mrs. A. H. Propst, Mrs. R. M. Cortney, Mrs. A. F. Hartsell, Mrs. J. E. Davis, Mrs. A. M. Shinn, Mrs. J. W. Pike, Mrs. Horace Miller, Mrs. J. K. Patterson, Mrs. R. A White, Miss Janie Klutz, Miss Georgia Sloop, Mrs. Allen Jones.
1929 Roll Lelia Tuttle Circle
Leader: Mrs. B. R. Craven; Assistant Leader, Mrs. J. C. Bodenheimer; Secretary, Mrs. H. S. Williams; Mission Treasurer, Mrs. W. J. Glass; Local Treasurer, Mrs. F. J. Haywood, Mrs. H. W. Blanks, Mrs. W. C. J. Caton, Mrs. Murray Clark, Mrs. R. W. Biggers, Mrs. W. M. Fisher, Mrs. S. G. Hawfield, Mrs. G. C. Love, Mrs. T. M. Rowlett, Mrs. J. W. Strider, Mrs. J. A. Kimmons, Mrs. W. B. Ward, Mrs. Jacob Stirewalt, Miss Sallie Sappenfield; Phone Committee, Mrs. J. C. Bodenheimer, Mrs. I. A. Yow, Mrs. A. S. Webb.
Membership Central Circle, 1929
Leader: Mrs. G. Ed. Kestler; Local Treasurer, Mrs. L. D. Coltrane; Mission Treasurer, Mrs. L. L. Maulden; Mrs. C. G. Burleyson, Mrs. J. M. Howard, Mrs. J. F. Dayvault; Phone Committee, Mrs. J. W. Cline, Mrs. J. C. Willeford, Mrs. Chester Bardnardt; Mrs. C. M. Ivey, Mrs. J. E. Smoot, Mrs. R. L. Miller, Mrs. M. L. Buchanan, Mrs. A. J. Dayvault, Mrs. J. Lee Crowell, Sr., Mrs. W. F. Goodman, Mrs. J. B. Sherrill, Mrs. C. B. Wagoner, Mrs. L. E. Taylor.
Membership Laura Harris Circle, 1929
Leader: Mrs. R. E. Jones; Secretary, Miss Margaret Hartsell; Treasurer, Miss Mary
Pemberton; Mrs. D. L. Bost, Mrs. G. W. Dowdy, Mrs. J. Lee Crowell, Jr., Miss Rebecca Dayvault, Mrs. I. I. Davis, Mrs. Robert Fisher, Mrs. A. F. Goodman, Mrs. E. L. Hicks, Miss Josie Hill, Miss Lucy Hartsell, Miss Bonte Loftin, Mrs. Marvin Long, Mrs. V. A. Means, Mrs. J. L. McKay, Mrs. B. L. Jessup, Miss Adele Pemberton, Miss Eva Taylor, Miss Mary Propst, Mrs. M. F. Ritchie, Mrs. P. B. Raiford, Mrs. Walter Haywood, Miss Anna Stider, Mrs. W. M. Sherrill, Mrs. A. G. Smith, Miss Cottrell Sherrill, Miss Helen Suther, Miss Edna Taylor.
The Jubilee Society Membership, 1929
Leader: Mrs. R. A. Brower; Secretary, Miss Isabel Nbost; Treasurer, Miss Mary Donnell
Smoot; Miss Pat Adams, Mrs. Ethel Griffin Black, Mrs. John Boger, Miss Virgie Cook, Mrs. George Griffin, Dr. W. C. Houston, honoarary member, Mrs. Fred Kestler, Mrs. Luther Kestler, Mrs. M. N. Hennessee, Miss Margaret Miller, Mrs. Robert Miller, Mrs. H. B. Bollinger, Mrs. J. W. Mitchell, Mrs. Norman Black, Mrs. J. A. Myrick, Mrs. J. H. Smith, Mrs. William Newsome, Mrs. D. T. Ramsay, Miss Albert Shinn, Miss Rosa Turner, Miss Pink Willeford, Mrs. J. H. Smith, Miss Leora Long.
Mrs. W. C. Houston and Mrs. W. D. Pemberton have been valuable help in getting up the History of Women’s Work. Because of lost records this history cannot be perfect and complete.
The Last Word
Because of the consecrated leadership and loyal cooperation or our members this Society has grown in Spirituality, Service, and Liberality, and by the aid of the Holy Spirit we hope to grow more and more into the likeness of Him, who said “Ye shall be a witness unto me, beginning at Jerusalem (Home) and unto the uttermost parts of the world” Foreign).
History Beginning in 1939
A two-day celebration of the church’s 100 birthday culminated on June 12, 1939 with the pastor, Dr. E. K. McLarty presiding at a Centennial Day Service. The sermon was preached by Bishop Claire Purcell and Dr. J. E. Smoot, church member and historian, read a short history of the church. Following the service, the congregation and invited guests, including former pastors and members adjourned for a picnic luncheon on the church lawn.
At the conclusion of World War II, Central Methodist Church underwent a rebirth much as it had done after the War Between the States. It was in 1949 that the first Houston Preaching Mission was held with Dr. David MacLennan of Canada as guest speaker. Dr. and Mrs. W. C. Houston, faithful church members, set up a perpetual fund to be used to secure fine preachers of any denomination to hold an annual Preaching Mission. Yearly, from 1949 until 1972 when the Mission was postponed until the new sanctuary was built, the following renowned preachers enriched the spiritual life of Concord: Dr. MacLennan who came in 1949, 1956, and 1965; the Rev. Pierce Harris of First Methodist Church, Atlanta; Bishop Richard C. Raines of Indiana; Dr. Norman W. Paullin, minister of Philadelphia Baptist Church; Dr. James S. Chubb, Methodist from Nebraska; Dr. J. Wallace Hamilton, minister of Pasadena Community Church, St. Petersburg, Florida; Dr. Paul Scherer, Lutheran from Union Theological Seminary in New York City; Dr. Eugene Smith, New York General Secretary of Division of World Missions; Bishop Hazen G. Werner, Methodist from Columbus, Ohio; Dr. H. Grady Hardin, Jr. Of Dallas, Texas; Dr. Frederick Myers Morris, rector St. Thomas Episcopal Church, New York City; Dr. Robert Goodrich, Jr., First Methodist Church, Dallas, Texas; Dr. F. E. Reinartz, Pres. Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary, Columbia, South Carolina; Dr. John F. Anderson, Jr., First Presbyterian Church, Orlando Florida; Bishop Paul Hardin, Jr., Columbia, South Carolina; Bishop Lance Webb Springfield, Illinois; Dr. Ernest Gordon, Dean of Princeton University Chapel; Bishop W. Kenneth Goodson, Birmingham, Alabama; Dr. Charles L. Allen, First United Methodist Church, Houston, Texas; Dr. Ernst A. Fitzgerald, Centenary Methodist Church, Winston-Salem; and Dr. A. Purnell Bailey, Executive Secretary Commission on Chaplains United Methodists, Washington, D.C.; Dr. Van Bogard Dunn. The generosity and Christian spirit of Dr. And Mrs. Houston has contributed much to the spiritual health of Central United Methodist Church and the entire Concord community.
With the postwar surge of vitality, the need for increased facilities was urgent. Dr. Frank B. Jordan, pastor from 1941-1947, began discussion of preliminary plans for expansion. The talks continued during the Rev. Herman Duncan’s pastorate in 1947-1949 and under the guidance of Dr. J. Clay Madison, 1949-1953, a building committee was formed to study the needs of the congregation.
A permanent Building Committee, appointed by the Rev. George B. Clemmer, 1957-61, approved and submitted to the congregation preliminary sketches for a new Educational Building. The architect chosen was a church member, George Albert Griffin.
Contracts were awarded in January, 1959, and on January 31, 1960, under the pastorate of the Rev. Julian Holmes, the formal opening of the new Educational Building was held. Dr. Carl H. King, Executive Secretary of Christian Education of the Western North Carolina Conference preached on “Seeing the Invisible.”
This three-storied air-conditioned building contains 19,500 sq. feet. It was built, equipped and the old educational building renovated for a total cost of over $265,000. More than half of this amount had been received by contributions on the Opening Sunday. Among the many Memorial gifts was the Coltrane Memorial Room. Which was used for church services during the building of the present sanctuary.
Extensive investigation of the condition of the old sanctuary solidified the necessity for a new building. The Rev. Roy E. Bell was pastor when L. D. Coltrane, Jr. Chairman of the Permanent Building Committee, presented on December 11, 1963, to the Official Board, preliminary plans for a new sanctuary.
Two years later, with official Board approval, additional property was purchased at the rear of the church, with frontage on Church Street. Plans for the new sanctuary and for a Building Fund drive were continued under the pastorates of the Rev. A. J. Cox, 1965-1967 and the Rev. Horwood P. Myers, 1967-1969. In 1966 the debt incurred for the Educational Building was retired and Central Methodist Church was ready for a new commitment.
A Church Conference held on March 3, 1968, gave approval to the appointment of a Building Committee with power to make actual construction pans and to raise such funds as would be needed to complete a new sanctuary. As formulated by the “Methodist Discipline,” the Quarterly Conference on March 13, 1968, empowered the Committee to employ an architect and proceed with the construction.
The Rev. E. Paul Hamilton was appointed to Central Methodist Church in June, 1969, and in February, 1970, a Church Advancement Crusade in 11 days raised $200,000 in pledges and cash contributions.
Preliminary plans submitted by architect George Albert Griffin were approved by the Building Committee on November 22, 1970; by the Charge Conference December 3, 1970; and by the Church Conference December 6, 1970. The Charge and Church Conferences also approved the borrowing of necessary funds up to $300,000.
On January 9, 1972, a final service was held in the old sanctuary, a part of which was built in 1960. Two former pastors, the Rev. A. J. Cox and the Rev. Herman Duncan participated atthe memorable occasion. Pastor Hamilton’s sermon was “Abounding In Hope.” As a fitting gesture the flowers in the sanctuary were given by the Woman’s Society of Christian Service “in Honor and Memory of All the Pastors and Officials of Central United Methodist Church.”
Work began immediately to raze the old building. The cornerstone, placed in the bell tower, was removed as was a lead box containing historical items. The lead box will be placed with the new cornerstone and sealed in the new sanctuary cornerstone ceremony.
On February 20, 1972, following the morning service in the Coltrane Memorial Room, where Dr. Melton E. Harbin, District Superintendent, preached on “Climb This Mountain,” the congregation adjourned to the site of the new sanctuary for ground-breaking ceremonies.
The ground was broken first by Dr. Harbin, the Rev. Paul Hamilton, minister, and J. Paul
Francis, church lay leader and co-chairman of the Building Committee. The second group included the Rev. E. J. Harbison, Associate Minister; Theodore M. Schramm, co-chairman of the Building Committee; Mrs. Elsie (E.P.) Guffy, representing the older age group in the church. Third Group: Alfred M. Brown, Mayor; Don Graham, Cabarrus Construction Company; George A. Griffin, architect. Fourth Group: Art W. Thomas, Jr., Chairman Board of Trustees; Howard Smith, Chairman Administrative Board; Mrs. Ben G. Merritt, President, Woman’s Society Christian Service, Fifth Group: Jan P. Heermans, Educational Assistant; John R. Boger, Jr., Chairman, Council on Ministries; Andy Campbell, President, Methodist Men. Sixth Group: John Henry Long, Church School superintendent; Heilig Wilkinson, President, Sr. High United Methodist Youth Fellowship; William Bogle, President, Jr. High United Methodist Youth Fellowship. Seventh Group: F. Paul Wiles, Building Fund Treasurer; Gresham M. Bost, Church Treasurer; Fred J. Allen, Lay member, Annual Conference.
In September, 1973 with the approval of the Church Conference, the trustees purchased an additional strip of land adjacent to the present property, to be used for a driveway.
The Rev. Harold W. Wright became pastor of Central church in June, 1973, and on Sunday, January 27, 1974 he presided at the Consecration Service held in the new Georgian Colonial sanctuary. The new structure contains 18,240 sq. feet, air-conditioned throughout and is constructed of steel and concrete at a total cost of $550,000. The church furnishings, many of which were given by members as memorials, cost $44,000 and the new pipe organ, a memorial gift, cost $55,000. In addition to the sanctuary, the new building has a pastor’s study, a church parlor, choir room, youth center and kitchen, and several church school rooms. The building connects with the educational building.
Central United Methodist Church, grateful to God for its material triumphs looks to the future with an awakening spirituality and a pledge to use its blessings to further God’s work.
We are indebted to our beloved former pastor, Rev. R. M. Courtney, for getting the record of the pastors of the church back to from 1844 to 1929.
Mary Elkins Goodman
Mary Snead Boger
Pastors Serving Central
1836-39 David Derrick
1839-40 Payton Bowman
1840 Abel Hoyle
1841 Simpson Jones
1842 Benjamin Hamilton
1843 Alfred Richardson (Allen Huckabee and Joseph Parker – students under training service)
1844 J. H. Zimmerman, Daniel McDonald
1845 William C. Clark
1846 Jack Bradley
1847-48 W. C Patterson
1849 W. L. Pegues
1850 S. D. Laney
1851-52 W. S. Haltam
1853-54 Paul F. Kistler
1855 J. L. Shuford
1856-57 John Watts
1858 A. G. Stacey
1859 E. W. Thompson, P. L. Herman
1860 T. L. Hammond
1861-62 Willis Halton, Landy Wood, supply
1863 James Stacey
1864 Louis Scarboro
1865 J. T. Kilgo
1866 M. C. David
1867-68 R. R. Pegues
1869 Samuel Leard
1870-73 D. R. Bruton
1874 O. F. Brent
1875 C. M. Pepper
1876-79 H. P. Cole
1880-81 Thomas W. Smith
1882-84 W. S. Creasman
1885-87 Joseph Wheeler
1887-88 W. F. Bumpass
1888-89 Jesse Page
1890-92 H. W. Bayes
1892-94 Soloman Poole
1894-1900 J. Ed Thompson
1900-03 J. A. B. Fry
1903-06 E. K. McLarty
1906-08 J. C. Rowe
1908-12 Plato Durham
1912 J. H. West
1913 Harold Turner
1914 W. R. Ware
1915-17 M. F. Moores
1917-22 Z. Paris
1922-25 W. A. Jenkins
1925-29 R. M. Courtney
1929-33 H. G. Allen
1933-38 W. L. Hutchins
1938-41 E. K. McLarty
1941-47 Frank Jordan
1947-49 Herman F. Duncan
1949-53 J. C. Madison
1957-61 Julian Holmes
1961-65 Roy Edison Bell
1965-67 A. J. Cox
1967-69 Horwood P. Myers, Jr.
1969-73 E. Paul Hamilton
1973-77 Harold E. Wright
1977-82 Garland Young
1982-87 Donald F. George
1987-91 Fred Donald Beaty
1991-96 Nancy Rankin
1996-98 Larry Kimel
1998-present Steve James
1957-61 Geo. Clemmer (retired)
1968-69 William R. Doser
-72 E. J. Harbison (retired)
1984-98 Worth Sweet
1992-97 William F. Gerhardt
1997-2000 Kevin Honbarger
2000- present Jonathan Brake