Churches of New Jersey #1: Morristown United Methodist Church

Sunday, May 15, 2011


I think churches are some of the most fascinating buildings in any town, partially because they tend to be the oldest buildings. You rarely see churches torn down. They also tend to be lovingly maintained, and since they are old, the architecture of the buildings is very interesting.
These photos were taken by me while I was on The Morristown Green, the historic town square in Morristown, New Jersey. Last fall, I wrote about Morristown and how important the town was during the Revolutionary War. I will soon have more photos up about The Green.

The history of this church is described on the church website:


The first building of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Morristown was completed in 1827 and was located on Market Street close to the corner of Maple Avenue.The top of Morris Street, two doors down from our present church, was the site of our second church building, dedicated in 1841. Ministers were re-assigned every one to three years to our first two churches. Methodists worshipped at the second church for over 30 years.

The cornerstone of our present church was laid on December 12, 1866, and the dedication held on March 22, 1870. The building was constructed of puddingstone, purple clay interspersed with white pebbles, which is local to this area and was transported from nearby Horse Hill. The practice of renting pews continued until 1917. In 1902, yearly pew rentals ranged from $7 to $110, depending upon desirability of location in the sanctuary!

In 1939 the name became "The Methodist Church", following the unification of three churches: Further unification changed the name to "The United Methodist Church" in 1968.
In January 1972, much of our church was destroyed by fire. The congregation worshippedin Temple B'NaiOr in Morristown during the reconstruction. The charred cross hanging in the courtyard serves as a reminder of this tragedy. Pieces from the crystal chandelier were also salvaged and now hang in a beautiful ceiling sculpture in the corner of the courtyard.  

You can check out the church website here.



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