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An Eye on History

 
St. Louis Salvation Army sign in a photo by Thomas Hawk, shared via Flickr, Creative Commons

Methodist History: The Salvation Army

The red kettles are a familiar sight at Christmastime. But did you know the group has deep ties to Methodism and Wesleyan tradition? View

Interior of Lovely Lane United Methodist Church as seen in January of 2014. Photo by Subodh Atal, shared via Facebook.

Lovely Lane:  A Methodist Birthplace

Dedicated on Nov. 6, 1887, this church became one of our most important buildings. “Your feet are truly on holy ground. Your eyes look upward and you see amazing things.” View

A three-handled love feast cup is on display at the United Methodist General Commission on Archives and History in New Jersey.

Methodist History: The What and Why of Love Feasts

John Wesley was influenced by the Moravians in adopting this Christian fellowship meal as a way of building community in the early days of Methodism. View

The United Methodist Building is the only non-governmental structure on Capitol Hill. Courtesy of General Board of Church and Society.

United Methodist Beacon on Capitol Hill

Learn more about the church's unique space in the heart of Washington. “Commitments about the importance of faith in action come together here.” View

The Rev. D.D. Meighen recounts the story of the first Father's Day service in Fairmont, West Virginia.  Video image by United Methodist Communications.

Methodist History: First Father’s Day at Church

In 1908, a Methodist church hosted the first service specifically honoring fathers. It was an event born from great love, and great pain. View

The sign at Pennington United Methodist Church in Nashville, Tenn., proclaims a message of hope. File photo by Raymond Landry.

The United Methodist Church: More than a name

Learn how our church's name was chosen. “If you leave the name ‘United’ off you’re leaving off both a significant piece and powerful part of who we are.” Read More

Photo of Methodist circuit rider Peter Cartwright. Image in the public domain.

Peter Cartwright: Memorable Methodist Circuit Rider

This colorful, early Methodist challenged Abraham Lincoln for political office and won 8-10,000 souls for Christ. View

Hymn writer Fanny Crosby, circa 1915. Image in the public domain.

Fanny Crosby: Legendary Methodist Hymn Writer

Despite being blind, she penned "Blessed Assurance" and "Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross" and wrote more hymns than Charles Wesley. View

Exterior view of Barratt's Chapel, a United Methodist Heritage Landmark in Delaware.

Barratt’s Chapel: Independence Hall of American Methodism

Get a drone's eye view of the site where ‘the first truly American-born denomination’ came together. View

Donna Miller of Historic St. George's United Methodist Church in Philadelphia points out images of Ann and Anna Jarvis at the church. Video image by United Methodist Communications.

Methodist History: The Founding Mothers of Mother’s Day

Two women created the holiday that falls on the second Sunday in May in the U.S. but do you know how, and why, they did it? View

Image portray Susanna Wesley, mother of the founders of Methodism. Courtesy of General Commission on Archives and History.

Susanna Wesley: Mother of Methodism

John and Charles Wesley's mom was a strong woman of faith. “The differences she made have lived on because of the sons that she raised.” View

Photo shows portrait of John Wesley who had a conversion experience at Aldersgate. Image courtesy of United Methodist Communications.

How Aldersgate Changed John Wesley

May 24 is Aldersgate Day, a special time for United Methodists. But do you know why? View

A genuine Tiffany glass window depicts Jesus in the Garden. The panel is on display in the lobby of the General Commission on Archives and History in Madison, New Jersey.

Methodist History: Tiffany Church Windows

A preservationist offers a quick way to tell if stained glass windows are valuable Tiffany originals. View

Archive photo of Georgia Harkness Methodist theologian.

Georgia Harkness: Methodist Trailblazer in Theology

During Women's History Month, we explore the powerful impact of an author and hymn writer whose work inspired MLK and remains relevant. View

Methodist deaconess Kathryn Maurer is seen in a 1935 photograph. Courtesy of California State Library.

Kathryn Maurer: Methodist Angel Welcomed Immigrants

Meet a deaconess whose kindness and dedication to those seeking a new life made headlines in her day. View

Methodist reformer Frances Willard is seen in portrait. Courtesy of United Methodist General Commission on Archives and History.

Methodist History: Early Voice for Women’s Rights

Learn more about the 19th century reformer who fought for voting rights and full representation in the Methodist Church. View

Ushers prepare for the offertory during a Sunday morning service at Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church in Washington D.C. Video image by United Methodist Communications.

Methodist History: Church of Presidents

A United Methodist landmark in Washington, D.C. was built with donations from leaders like Lincoln along with church members across the U.S. View

A student works in the vault at the United Methodist General Commission on Archives and History, based at Drew University in New Jersey. Video image by United Methodist Communications.

Archives & History: Connecting Church Past, Present, Future

Agency preserves the past to inform the future of The United Methodist Church. Take a tour and see the treasures that tell the denomination's story. View

Speculative portrait of Annie Sweitzer by Richard C. Douglas, New Windsor, Maryland. Artwork courtesy of Richard C. Douglas and the Strawbridge Shrine Association.

Methodist History: Slave welcomed as one of first members

African-Americans were among the earliest converts to Methodism in America. Annie Sweitzer was one of the first. View

Stained glass window features Shelly Gale, an early deaconess at Mother African Zoar United Methodist Church. Photo by John Coleman.

Methodist History: Mother African Zoar’s Legacy

Pennsylvania congregation has cared for its community for 220 years, and passed on their spirit. 'We birthed five other churches.” View

Archive photo of students at Sager Brown, a school and orphanage for African- American children.

Center Honors Black Methodists’ History

Heritage Center highlights important role African Americans play in the story of Methodism. "We all need to care more about each other’s stories." View

The Rev. Ralph Abernathy and his family march with the Rev. and Mrs. Martin Luther King on march from Selma to Montgomery in 1965. Courtesy: Abernathy Family/Wikimedia Commons.

Eyewitness to Selma: Faith Leaders’ Stand for Civil Rights

“Many people cannot understand the depth of patriotism of Martin King and other civil rights heroes and heroines." Pastor recalls historic effort for voting rights. View

Image of Methodist Bishop Gilbert Haven. Courtesy: Archives and History.

Methodist History: Bishop Fought Slavery

Gilbert Haven lived in the 19th-century but was progressive in his stances to end slavery, allow interracial marriage, and grant ordination of women. View

Comic books feature the adventures of Methodism's founding fathers, John Wesley and Francis Asbury. The books were published by Ron Kerr Associates, 1976. Image from video by United Methodist Communications.

Comic Books Animate United Methodist History

John Wesley and Francis Asbury join the ranks of action heroes like Batman and The Hulk in comic books designed to educate and entertain. View

Image of the Rev. Charles Albert Tindley. Courtesy of Tindley Temple United Methodist Church, Philadelphia, PA.

Tindley Temple: A Highlight of Methodist History

Learn about a church named for a Methodist preacher who drew huge crowds in the '20s and was a founding father of Gospel music. View

Slanted communion cups allowed Victorian era Methodists to avoid the appearance of drinking alcohol. Video image by United Methodist Communications.

Methodist History: Communion Cups

Have you seen an unusual communion cup set at your church? Learn secrets behind the slanted glassware that many Victorian era Methodists used. View

Choirs perform Christmas hymns at Barratt's Chapel's annual Christmas Carols concert in 2016.Image from video by Kisker Productions for United Methodist Communications.

Christmas Carols at United Methodist Landmark

Step back in time and enjoy traditional hymns at Barratt's Chapel. “Worshipers were singing those same carols here, same notes, same words, 200 years ago, and that’s special.” View

Image of Charles Wesley. Courtesy of United Methodist Commission on Archives and History.

Charles Wesley’s Gift of Music

John's younger brother made his own contribution as “the poet laureate and great writer of Methodism.” View

Statue of Methodist Bishop Francis Asbury stands on grounds of Drew University in New Jersey. Photo by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

Methodism’s American Saint: Bishop Francis Asbury

He died March 31, 1816 and Asbury's efforts helped Methodism become the largest Protestant church body in America just 75 years after his death. View

Videographer captures image of tent at Ocean Grove, NJ. Photo by Fran Coode Walsh.

Historic Methodist Camp is ‘God’s Square Mile’

For some, summertime means heading to one of Methodism's best kept secrets, a spiritual oasis at the beach in New Jersey. View

Chuck Knows Church dresses like John Wesley to tell a little about this founding father of Methodism

Chuck Knows Church: John Wesley

Chuck Knows Church focuses on Methodist founding father, John Wesley and events that sparked the start of a new church. View

Actor portrays the Rev. Simon Blessing, an itinerant Methodist minister from the 1700s. Video image by Chris Foster.

Methodist history comes to life at St. George’s

Philadelphia church offers an experience in time travel for curious United Methodists. And history lessons that ring true today. View

Historic image shows Titanic at sea.  Courtesy Phil Gowan.

Ties to the Titanic: Methodists aboard the famous ship

Among the many intriguing stories of survivors, historian Phil Gowan says a Methodist man married a woman he met on a lifeboat. View

Archivist Frances Lyons-Bristol assists a visitor to the United Methodist General Commission on Archives and History. Video image courtesy of United Methodist Communications.

Preserving Methodist Life Stories

Archivist helps families bring the stories of Methodist preachers and lay people to life. View

The Rev. Gil Caldwell walks with MLK at a rally in Boston in 1958. Courtesy: the Rev. Gil Caldwell.

The Rev. Gil Caldwell: Sharing MLK’s Dream

'One can never be at rest when one knew Martin King.' Retired pastor stood with civil rights leader then, and continues fight for justice today. View

The Rev. James Lawson speaks about nonviolence at First Baptist Church in Montgomery, Ala., the site of a 1961 confrontation between Freedom Riders and an angry mob. 2009 file photo by Kathy L. Gilbert,  United Methodist News Service.

The Rev. James Lawson: Sharing MLK’s Dream

“Love and truth and compassion still are the only ways.” The Rev. James Lawson recalls what he learned from MLK. View

Rev. Dr. Joseph E. Lowery's Ninety Years Birthday Celebration at the Atlanta Symphony Hall, October 9, 2011 included a birthday song by Stevie Wonder.  Next to Rev. Lowery is his wife of 60 years, Evelyn Lowery. Photo by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

The Rev. Joseph Lowery: Sharing MLK’s Dream

“The fear of death...never affected his commitment.” The Rev. Joseph Lowery describes his time with Martin Luther King Jr. View

Victor Cyrus-Franklin serves as an assistant pastor at Holman United Methodist Church in Los Angeles. Photo provided by Victor Cyrus-Franklin.

Victor Cyrus-Franklin: Sharing MLK’s Dream

"We can learn from what happened then to help us learn what...to do now." Young pastor recalls the teachings of Martin Luther King Jr. View

The Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial in Washington was dedicated by President Obama on Oct. 16, 2011. Photo by Maile Bradfield, United Methodist Communications.

United Methodists share MLK’s dream

United Methodists who knew the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. describe how he changed their lives. View

Video image shows building at Strawbridge Shrine historic site in Maryland. Courtesy of United Methodist Communications.

Farmers Who Sowed Methodism in America

Get back to your United Methodist roots. Visit the Maryland farm where a circuit rider and his wife planted the faith among friends and neighbors. View