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History of First Presbyterian Church

History of First Presbyterian Church



The First Presbyterian Church of Gainesville was organized on June 6, 1879 as a congregation of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. with nine charter members.  The original church building was a 2-story structure at Main and Lindsay Streets.  It was occupied on April 22, 1883.  On February 1, 1906 a consolidation between the Cumberland and First Presbyterian churches was consummated.  The cornerstone of the current church building was laid on September 8, 1912 and gas lights were installed.  The church was extensively remodeled and restored from 1956 through 1959 and again in 1977.  Ninety-three stained glass windows grace the building.  The sanctuary design was based on the Akron plan popular at the time.  A Celtic cross high atop the steeple bell tower denotes its Presbyterian heritage and carillon music regularly rings from the steeple, reminding the community of spiritual aspirations.


Worship Services are enhanced by our pipe organ.  The first organ was installed in 1917.  The current organ is the second one purchased by the congregation and has been completely rebuilt.  The frontal pipes and woodwork are a part of the original organ.  The present organ contains 22 stops, 22 ranks, 1225 pipes with swell-great, swell-pedal, and great-pedal couplers.  The organ enriches the Gainesville community with its use for special musical events and recitals. 


The carillon in the bell tower plays several times each day and can be heard throughout the downtown area.


The William F. Rogan Memorial Library was named for the former pastor when the library was established in 1956.  The library offers the congregation access to books, media materials, maps, reference, research and leisure reading materials.


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