History

trinity tower

As  was  usual  in  pioneer  times,  the  first  meeting  place  of  Methodists  in  Somerset  was a  log  home, which oral history
tells  us  was  on  North  Vine  Street. The  exact location is not
known.  Before 1830 a  Methodist  preaching  circuit  had been established  in  the county, with ten or twelve preaching points,
of which Somerset was  one.  Biship  Joshua  Soule  was  the presiding bishop  and one of the country’s rural churches was called  Soule’s  Chapel.  This became known as  “The Mother Church”  of  our  church   because  so  many  of  its  members eventually joined the Somerset Church.

The  congregation  created  its  first  church  building on South
Main   Street   in  1846  and  it   was   called   the   Main   Street
Methodist  Church.  The lot was donated  by Mr. John Curd.  In
1866,  the  minister  serving  at  the  time  felt  that  the  church
should   be   divided.  So   the   Methodist   Episcopal   Church
(Northern Church), erected a church on East Mt. Vernon Street
on the lot where the Virginia Theatre now stands and this was used until about 1918. This congregation; however, eventually became reaffiliated with the Methodist Episcopal Church South,  thus coming full circle.  The South Main Street Church (Methodist Episcopal Church South) continued to grow, and in 1917 under the leadership of Rev. W. L. Clark,  a new and larger building of brick,  in the neo-classic style,  popular at the time, was erected on a lot, at the corner of East Mt. Vernon Street and Central Avenue.  This lot was given by Joe H. Gibson,  the  great  grandson  of  Mr  John  Curd  who  had  given  the  lot  for first Methodist Church. The building continued in use until the present sanctuary was built in 1959 under the leadership of Dr. Ralph G. Wesley. The  first  service  of  this new sanctuary was conducted by Bishop Walter Gum on December 18,  1960.   A  new  educational   wing  was  dedicated  in  1975  by  Bishop  Frank  L.  Robertson,  Ralph Wesley,  District  Superintendent  and  Harold  E.  Henson,  Minister.   Another  educational  wing,  which occupies the space of the 1917 structure that was torn down in 1973, was completed in 1979 under the ministry of Dr. Walton Gardner.

Two acts of unification have changed the name of our church over the years. In 1939, the Methodist Episcopal, The Methodist Episcopal Church South, the Protestant Methodist Church merged to form the Methodist Church. In 1968 the Evangelical United Brethren Church merged with the Methodist Church forming the United Methodist Church.

We have a beautiful symbol on the outside of our sanctuary. It is a tall tower reaching skyward. It symbolizes the trinity, as sets of three’s are used in the construction. The circle at the top represents eternity. You may also notice that at the top of this tower, the cross can be seen from a distance at any angle and reaches out to our community.