First United Methodist Chiefland
Friday, January 17, 2020

How We Got Here

The Chiefland Methodist Church was organized in l86l in the home of Isaac P. Hardee with 5 or 6 members. The home was known as Pine Hill and is still located two miles west of the present church. The meeting place was soon moved to the log school house, closer to Chiefland, and was known as the Antioch Church. It was served by various circuit riders.

A box-type house with wide boards running vertically was built about the year l885. It was located a mile northeast of the old log school house. Services were held there until l9ll.

In that year, A. P. Hardee of Bronson deeded a lot in Hardeetown to the church. A small but neat frame building was erected. It was painted white, trimmed in green, and had a reddish brown roof. This was the first property owned by the church.

The lot on which the present church building is located was acquired in l928. Construction of a stucco building began the next year and was completed in l93l. The church continued to be served by circuit riders until l948 when Reverend Roy Ben Ridley became its first full-time pastor. The following year the building was condemned after being destroyed by termites. Services were held in the high school auditorium while a new church building made of stucco and block was constructed . The first service was held in the new building on Easter Sunday, l950.

In the late l950's, a six-room educational building was added. The new parsonage was erected during the years l967 to l969. The lot across the street, south of the church was purchased for future growth in the early l970's; it now supports a pavilion and a fenced-in playground.

A new sanctuary was finished in l984. An additional lot east of the church was bought in l998. We envision an educational facility combined with a fellowship hall being built there.

In September 2012, a steeple and bell were added to the church, courtesy of an anonymous donor.