The History of the Gainesboro Methodist Church

History of Methodist Churches and Institutions in Middle Tennessee 1787-1956
Cullen T. Carter, Editor
The Parthenon Press, Nashville, TN, 1956

Material provided by Jane Hembree Crowley

The Gainesboro Methodist Church was organized in 1889 under W. H. Baird, pastor, and Rev. J. J. Ransom, Presiding Elder, with eight members. It was one of eight churches on the Gainesboro-Granville Circuit. There was no church building and the regular services once a month were held in the old Christian Church for four years. During this time revivals were held and other members were added to the membership. More people were moving into Gainesboro, among them several Presbyterians. Gainesboro had only two churches-Methodist and Christian-and the Presbyterians attended the Methodist services. In a short time a union Sunday school was organized which met in the courthouse.

In 1893 Rev. J. L. Smotherman was sent to Gainesboro as a pastor. He saw the possibilities for the Methodist Church and, being encouraged by the cooperation of the Presbyterians, began a campaign to build a place for worship. A lot was given south of the courthouse one block from the square. Work was started in a short time and the house was completed in 1894. Rev. Smotherman was an enthusiastic worker and inspired the membership in the work. The church prospered and many members were added during the years.

In 1922 the church building was found to be inadequate for the needs. The Sunday school had seven classes, the young people were many and the one-room church could no longer meet their needs. The pastor, Rev. K. A. Early, with interested members, began an intensive drive to get a new and larger church to meet the needs. A lot was purchased across the street from the old one. The congregation owned a parsonage. This was sold, as also the church was sold for a business house. The lot bought had a four-room cottage that was fine for a parsonage.

On July 4, 1923, the ground was broken for the new building by Rev. E. P. Anderson, Presiding Elder. Work was immediately begun. Much of the work was done by members; material such as logs for lumber was donated; members who owned teams hauled the logs to the mill; the pastor had a brick kiln at the river where the brick for the inside walls were burned. In fact, most members found something they could do as well as give of their means. The cornerstone was laid in September, 1923. The building, consisting of the sanctuary, seven Sunday school rooms, pastor's study, a full-sized basement, equipped with a kitchen and a large recreation hall, was ready to move into in 1924. During these years the church had remained on the Gainesboro-Granville Circuit. In 1946 the church became a station with a full-time pastor. Soon after this plans were begun to build a new parsonage. This was erected on the lot just behind the old one. It was completed the next year. The parsonage has living room, dining room, four bedrooms, kitchen, bath and full-sized basement.

The church feels proud to have had three young men to enter the ministry: Rev. H. Freeman McGlasson has held pastorates in Northwest Indiana Conference for several years and is now [1956] District Superintendent in this Conference; Rev. Lowry Anderson has been preaching in the North Georgia Conference for several years; Dennis Tramel, son of Rev. E. M. Tramel, present pastor, has entered the ministry and has been granted license as a local preacher.

The Gainesboro Church membership is now [1956] 151. The church building is valued at $75,000.00 and the parsonage at $13,000.00.

The following are members of the official board at the present time: Cordell Clark, chairman; V. C. Berry, charge lay leader; W. C. Anderson, district steward; F. L. Tardy, Sunday school superintendent; Mrs. F. L. Tardy, communion steward; Mrs. Max Whitaker, treasurer; Mrs. Ruth Page, president of the W.S.C.S.; P. H. Anderson, Mrs. G. D. Anderson, Mrs. J. W. Draper, Mrs. S. C. Hughes, W. C. Naff, Roger Quarles, Earl Tardy, Max Whitaker, Mrs. Ruth Wooten, Mrs. Meadows Montgomery, Mrs. W. G. Quarles.

E. M. Tramel, Pastor

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Jane Hembree Crowley
Charles Reeves, Jr.,

Jackson County Coordinators
This page last updated: 13 June 2000