HISTORICAL TIME LINE OF
WESLEY CHURCH, MORGANTOWN, WV
HIGHLIGHTS OF OUR HISTORY
1772-1777 Exhorters and circuit riders organized many
Methodist societies in the Morgantown area.
1784 Bishop Francis Asbury designated the region beyond the mountains as the "Redstone
Circuit," with John Cooper and Samuel Breeze as its riders.
1785 Bishop Asbury "preached and baptized" in Morgantown and at
Colonel Martin 's (near present-day Fort Martin).
1786 Six hundred persons heard Bishop Asbury on a "great day" in Morgantown.
Morgantown became part of the Clarksburg Circuit, Baltimore Conference.
1788 Bishop Asbury preached to a "lifeless, disorderly people"
here but reported a "fine new chapel" at Colonel Martin's, apparently the first Methodist structure in Monongalia County.
Bishop Asbury held a quarterly meeting here.
1792 Bishop Asbury spoke on the interest in academic life that existed in the Morgantown
1801-1803 A small frame church was erected on the site now occupied by the University's Administration building, which
served all denominations in the vicinity for several years.
1806 The congregation was assigned to the Monongalia Circuit.
trustees of the Methodist Episcopal Church constructed a brick building at the corner of Pleasant and Chestnut (Long Alley), first
permanent home of the congregation.
1824 The trustees acquired the site of the earlier frame building and converted it entirely to
use as a cemetery for all denominations. The congregation now was part of the Monongalia Circuit, Pittsburgh Conference.
congregation had grown to the point that it was made a "Station" for the first time, with the Reverend Thomas Drummond assigned as
its minister. It was now of the Uniontown District, Pittsburgh Conference. During the same year, the Sunday School was organized with
Waitman T. Willey as its first superintendent.
1837 Now it was a part of the Morgantown District, Pittsburgh Conference.
District designation was the same, but it was now in the Western Virginia Conference, organized July 4 at Wheeling
1849 The church
was destroyed by fire, but the trustees set to work at once to rebuild on the same site.
1850 The new church was completed, and was
dedicated October 1 by Bishop Edmund S. Janes. The building, long known simply as the "Pleasant Street Church." At about the same
time, a new building in the Flatts was dedicated, too, known as Drummond Chapel, in honor of the Reverend Thomas Drummond, first pastor
of the Morgantown Station, who had been instrumental in organizing this new congregation.
1864 The new State's emergence changed the
Conference designation from Western Virginia to simply West Virginia.
1877 The Reverend John R. Thompson resigned his pulpit to become
the second president of the young West Virginia University.
1896 "An ever-increasing number of University students in our midst" was
one of the reasons put forth by the trustees for launching a "new church movement."
1897 The trustees sold the burial ground to the
State, and the remains of 240 persons were reinterred as the first burials in East Oak Grove Cemetery.
1903 Ground was broken for
the present building on April 14, with a pick and shovel supplied by the Baker Hardware Company. The cornerstone was laid with appropriate
ceremonies October 19.
1904 The building was completed at a final cost of more than $103,000. Twilight services were held in the partially
completed structure July 3; and two weeks later, the old bell, a survivor of the fire of 1849, was carried up High Street in a colorfully
decked wagon, and installed in the belfry of the new building. Dedication ceremonies began November 20, and continued through the
1939 The year of the union of three largest branches of Methodism, the congregation assumed its present designation as
Wesley Methodist Church, Fairmont District, West Virginia Conference.
1943 On May 19,300 persons assembled for a ceremonial burning
of the bonds-the first time the congregation had been totally free of debt since 1903.
1949 Wesley youth Center was completed and
dedicated, a gift of Mr. and Mrs. R. M. Davis.
1951 The new Sanctuary was completed and dedicated, a gift of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Christopher.
1963-1964 On the eve of this 60th anniversary observance, the Official Board created a Quadrennial Planning Committee, charged with
outlining the Church's responsibilities and needs in the years ahead. Out of this grew a Building Committee, charged with implementing
portions of the Quadrennial Planning Committee's recommendations.
1968 The Methodist Church merges with The Evangelical United Brethren
Church to become the The United Methodist Church.
1976 Sanctuary Soundway system was installed in memory of Edna Dudderar.
date marks the 200th year in Morgantown for the Methodist congregation that developed
into Wesley United Methodist Church. An old
bulletin from the 1920's reads: "Founded in
1784, visited by Francis Asbury July 10, 1785."
1995 Installed new heating/air conditioning
system with a seed gift from Hazel Ruby McQuain. Purchased new parsonage on Rotary Street.
1996 A Major Funds Campaign was undertaken
seeking to raise $450,000-500,000 for church renovations and updates.
1997 Major renovations and remodeling of the church and Davis
Building began. Exterior stone work and complete interior work in all areas of the building were started.
2002 A church van was purchased
to enhance the church's ministry.
2003 Wesley's membership again exceeds 1,000 and average worship attendance is 485-525 per Sunday.
Major building projects continue under the trustees direction for fellowship hall, stained glass windows, numerous projects in the
Davis Building, audio/video recording studio and electrical upgrades, and locker rooms. Also, a major renovation of and addition to
the Tower Bells was undertaken.. With a major gift from the Mary-Jane English family, the bells were completely restored and three
new bells were cast bringing the total to 14 plus the original tolling bell.
2004 The church celebrates 100 years at its present location,
as growth within the congregation continues.
2015 New High Street handicap accessible entrance completed. Elevator from main level
installed for access to all floors except basement. Haden Chapel was relocated to make room for the church office and nursery.
Classrooms were moved and given tender loving care.
2016 A small kitchen/ prep area was added to the main floor across . This allows
social events to have easier access for preparations of refreshments.
OUR MINISTERS, 1833-PRESENT
Thomas Drummond, 1833-1834
George S. Holmes, 1835-1836
H. Gilmore, 1836-1838
J. Stinchcomb, 1838-1839
J. Spencer, 1839-1841
W. D. Lemon, 1841-1843
John R. Coil, 1843-1844
Edward Burkett, 1844-1846
S. B. Dunlap, 1846-1847
Isaac McClaskey, 1847-1848
J.D. Cramer, 1848-1849
S. Patterson, 1849-1851
S. G. J. Worthington, 1851-1853
William Hunter, 1853-1855
Thomas H. Monroe, 1855-1857
James Drummond, 1857-1859
Gideon Martin, 1859-1861
J. B. Blakeney, 1861-1863
D. T. Daugherty, 1863-1864
Benjamin Ison, 1864-1867
J. D. Onins, 1867-1868
W. M; Mullenix, 1870-1873
Edward W. Ryan, 1873-1876
John R. Thomson, 1876-1877
William R. White, 1877
Winfield C. Snodgrass. 1878-1881
Thomas B. Hughes, 1881-1883
Waitman T. Willey, 1883-1884 (lecturer)
Clark Crawford, 1884-1886
William R. White, 1886-1889
J. A. Fullerton, 1889-1890
M. F. Dryden, 1890
William R. White, 1891
S. Hamilton Day, 1891-1895
S .V. Leech, 1898-1902
Millard F. Compton, 1902-1907
Charles K. Jenness, 1907-1914
H. W. Ewing, 1914-1918
W. E. Lowther, 1921-1929
Sheridan W. Bell, 1930-1934
Joseph C. Hoffman, 1934-1937
W. Sproule Boyd, 1937-1947
Leroy Hooper, 1947-1957
Aldred P. Wallace, 1957 -1960
Jennings H. Fast, 1960-1969
E. David DuBois, 1969-1974
Robert B. Engle, 1974-1978
Frank L. Shaffer, Jr., 1978-1982
Ross M. Evans, 1982-1985
William D. Slates, 1985-1990
Richard L. Wright, 1990-1997
Ken A. Ramsey,
Michael Atkinson, 2008-2015
Randall Flanagan 2015-present