First Presbyterian Church
The local Presbyterian congregation was first formed by families who came to this
area of Alabama because of growing mining activities. In 1889 the church was first
formed and then organized in 1898. Due to the soon downturn in the mining industry many of the members were forced to move away and the congregation disbanded.
In 1916 the mines were again flourishing and the church reorganized. It met in three separate places for several years -- the courthouse, the Methodist Church, and the
upstairs of what was formerly a department store on Jackson Avenue.
The Methodist Church had built a new church building in 1904 and in 1924 the land
on Green Avenue that the Methodist Church had been on was donated to the
Presbyterian congregation by James E. Wilson. Soon afterward a block frame
structure was erected and the Presbyterians could now say that they had a home of
On Sunday, September 12, 1948 a dedication service was held for the new modern
brick sanctuary of First Presbyterian Church. At the time it was the largest
Presbyterian church structure in Franklin County with the greatest seating capacity.
It still holds those two distinctions! Since that date, the congregation has added a
fellowship hall and an educational wing.
First Presbyterian since its founding days was an active congregation in the
Presbyterian Church in the United States of America and later was part of the North Alabama Union Presbytery. In July, 1984 the congregation voted to leave its former affiliation to join the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), a more conservative
and Bible centered nationwide denomination.
Since its founding in 1973 at Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham, the
PCA has been one of the fastest growing church denominations in the nation with
many home, foreign and student mission outreaches. As of 2009, the PCA had an
active membership of over 342,000 in 1,666 churches pastored by 3,541 ministers who belong to 77 presbyteries or area districts. The denomination supported 7,662
missionaries including long-term,short-term, and indigenous church planters.
They also had 172 chaplains and 110 campus ministers.