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New city's core included church
Liberty lore
LIFE lib lor methodist church
An early Hinesville United Methodist Church - photo by Photo provided.
Recently while strolling through downtown Hinesville Park admiring the beautiful dogwoods, azaleas and camellias in bloom, I could not help but think of the history of the area.
In 1836, land was purchased from the heirs of John Martin in order to move Liberty’s county seat. A survey of land for the town was completed in March 1837. In April, 54 lots were sold for the sum of $1,395.50. Six lots were reserved for public buildings, including a church and school house.
That same year the two-story wood courthouse was erected in the center of the surveyed land with space reserved for a green on all sides. A watering place was provided on the southeast corner for horses and a pump was installed for public use.
A house of worship for all denominations was built almost immediately on the reserved lot in 1837. It evolved into a Methodist Church as early as 1842, probably because most of the town’s residents were Methodists. This was the only church in town for white people for 100 years.
The first services were held in a small frame building, which was later replaced by a well-furnished, larger structure, which was used for a longer period of time than the first. A bell in the tower was used to call the worshippers to church and was tolled on special occasions.
Later this building was moved and converted into a grocery store after a new church had been built in 1942 on the corner of Main Street and Memorial Drive. In 1985, a fourth building was completed beside this one.
Outstanding ministers of the Methodist Episcopal Church who were descendants of original settlers in Liberty County, were the Rev. John Andrews and Bishop James Osgood Andrews. Andrews was the first native-born Georgian to obtain the position of bishop.
Many years later, the Hinesville Methodist Youth Fellowship sponsored a 90-page cookbook.
The book is chock full of delicious recipes from members Odessa Gentry, Mrs. Joe Brown, Effie Ashmore, Estelle Caswell, Grace Shippey, Jordye Bacon, Eloise Bruce, Sara Brown, Sara Durrence, Arlene Hurst and many other good cooks. The book sold for $2.95.
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