Briceville Community Church

The Briceville United Methodist Church was formerly a Community Church. The building was built in the late 1880’s. The Coal Creek Mining and Manufacturing Co. transferred the land (.35 acres) to the Methodist Church, August 13, 1896. The trustees at that time were E.S. White, J.A. Newman, Charles Petree, J.E. Hatmaker, and Edward Jackson.

It is believed that John Moore donated the land for the cemetery. The oldest grave there is Henry Mears who died March 31, 1891. The last was Bonnie McGhee Carter. A listing of all the graves there is part of a book containing all the cemeteries in Anderson County. It was compiled by Mary Harris.

It is not known why the church was built with two steeples and two entry doors. It is probably a Welsh design. Many of the miners came from Wales. The location of the church and its architecture make it one of the most beautiful churches in the area.

One of the first local preachers in 1903 was Dr. Dickson, a medical doctor practicing in Coal Creek and Briceville. At that time membership was 68. Membership has varied over the years. The church has shared pastors with Lake City, Oliver Springs, Heiskell, Jacksboro, Mount Zion and Dutch Valley. It is now a three church parish–Briceville, Lake City and Dutch Valley.

The church building has had many improvements over the years. A basement, Sunday School rooms, kitchen, paneling and central heating have been added.

One of the prominent pastors has been Ralph E. Cline. Rev. Cline served as pastor from 1947 – 1965 . Rev. Cline was endeared not only by Methodists but the entire Briceville community. Rev. Cline solved the problem of cleaning the cemetery with all the above ground headstones by bringing in goats. He is now serving Pittman Center Church. Prominent members now are Charles Wormsley, Anna Mae Evans and Dorsey Landrum. When a funeral was held there, the tolling of the bell could be heard over the entire town. In the early days it was in the Knoxville District. It is now in the Oak Ridge District. John Trundle is District Superintendent. The present pastor is Rev. James Waddell.

[Information copied by permission from old Anderson County USGenWeb site maintained by Brenda Foster and Renee Scarbrough.]

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