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Our History


1880 - 1944

A Union Church Building was constructed on Galloway in Columbia, Tennessee in 1880, An afternoon Sunday School was held there for Methodists in the southern, or railroad,section of town.  On October 10th during the 1885 Annual Methodist Conference a Methodist Church was organized for the convenience of church members who lived in that area.  Originally there were twelve charter members of what was called the South Columbia Methodist Church. Reverend W.E. Wilkes was the first minister.  Membership grew and it became a station on the circuit, but when the railroad yards were moved, many members lost and it returned to mission status.


1945 - 1962

George R. Craft and his sister Edna Craft Witt bequeathed $6,000 to the South Columbia Methodist Church in 1940,which the board and membership voted to be used to build a new church building in the area.  That fall, a house and a lot on the corner of Thirtheenth Street and South High, was bought for $2,250.  The old church building was torn down and material from it was used in the new construction. While the new church was being prepared, services were held in Frierson Memorial Presbyterian Church on South Main.  Within a year the work was completed and the first service was held in 1941 by Reverend M.K. Harwell.  The name of the church became Craft Memorial Methodist Church, in memory of George R. Craft and Edna Craft Witt.  Bishop Paul B. Kern dedicated the church on May 20, 1945.  A parsonage was built beside the church in 1947 and Reverend A.J. Bunn was the first to reside there.  Two additional Sunday School rooms were added in the rear of the sanctuary in 1949.


1962 - 2020

While Reverend Roy C. Moore was pastor in 1959, the congregation purchased four acres on Hatcher Lane from Fleming Rainey, planning to build a new, larger church on the lot.  These plans were furthered during December of 1961 to December of 1962 under the pastorate of Reverend Marshall Moss who held the first worship service in the sanctuary which is now our Fellowship Hall.  Fourteen class rooms for Sunday School and other uses were also built at that time.  On June 4th, 1967 a ground breaking service was held for a larger 400 seat sanctuary while Reverend J. Thomas Cook was pastor.  Construction was completed in eight months and a Service of Consecreation was held January 21, 1968 as the first worship service by Bishop H. Ellis Finger Jr., District Superintendent Reverend Fenton Warren, and Reverend Cook.  Seven new classrooms, three restrooms, a study, office, and two dressing rooms were also added.  A parsonage was located at 1911 Alpine Drive, but in 1972 this was changed to 1408 Windermere Drive.  As with all Methodist Churches, Craft Memorial Methodist Church changed its name to Craft Memorial United methodist Church in April of 1968.  On the national level, the Methodist Church joined hands with The Evangelical United Brethren Church and thus formed a new demonination called The United Methodist.  We have continued to grow and prosper with the additions of a new organ, piano, and alterations to the choir section, as well as a year round Christian Day Care, an annual Drive-thru Living Nativity, and Carillons ringing out from the steeple.  Craft Memorial UMC stands as it was envisioned in the preliminary drawings by Reverends' Moss and Cook, solid evidence of real faith and service of our congregation.

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