1896 – 2011
The desire for a Reformed Church in Salisbury grew in the hearts of eight people destined to become the charter members of the church which was first named Faith Reformed Church of Salisbury. The committee in charge of organizing a church in Salisbury included the Reverends J.M.L. Lyerly, A Shulenbuerger, J.C. Leonard, and P. Barringer. This committee met in Salisbury on May 7, 1896 with the Rev. A.C. Whitmer, Supt. of Home Missions of the Salisbury area. Reverend J.M.L. Lyerly and Reverend J.C. Leonard were to two representatives at the organizational meeting.
On April 28, 1896, the Board of Missions purchased a lot at the corner of West Horah and South Church Street. On May 12, 1897, the church bought the property from the Board of Missions.
On June 28, 1896, an organizational meeting was held in the home of F. Monroe Holshouser. Charter members in attendance included Mr & Mrs F.M. Holshouser, Mr and Mrs H.C. Corriher, Mr M.D. Lefler, Mrs John Odell, Mrs Cora Earnhardt, and Mr. Dorsett Holshouser. The group first met in rented space in the YMCA. A short time later they built a temporary chapel on the Horah Street side of the lot at an approximate cost of $150.
On September 2, 1897 the cornerstone was laid for what was described as a “one room brick church, with pulpit in recessed area at front. The choir loft was to the left of the pulpit. There was recessed room for organ bellows, two entrances, and a belfry over corner door.” The financial cost estimate for the church was $3,000 but the actual cost was $5,000. This was without a Sunday School room finished and with no furnace. Gifts from the Classis were $500, gifts from Salisbury citizens amounted to $800, and stain glass windows were given from people throughout the area in memory of loved ones.
The first worship service was held in the new church on November 18, 1898.
On May 4, 1919 by a vote of 30 to 14, the name Faith Reformed church was changed to First Reformed of the N.C. Classis of the Potomac Synod. On October 1, 1928, First Reformed Church became self-supporting, assuming the Mission Board’s part of the minister’s salary.
In June 1934, the merger of the Reformed Church and the Evangelical Church took place in Cleveland, Ohio. From that we were known as First Evangelical and Reformed Church.
In 1947 the B.V. Hedrick property was acquired for $25,000. The building of our present church was begun on this property in 1953 and the structure was occupied in October 1954. The old church property was sold for $18,000.
The merger of the Evangelical and Reformed Church with the Congregational Christian Church took place in June 1957 in Cleveland, Ohio. The new denomination was named the United Church of Christ. The educational building was completed and the entire church was dedicated on September 27, 1959. “Burning of the note” was celebrated in June 1969.
Rev. Marcella Morton was welcomed as our Interim Pastor in November, 2010. First United Church of Christ at 207 West Horah Street continues to be a very vital and contributing factor in the Salisbury Community.