Wesley Monumental Church
Savannah, GA 31401
Tours: Every Friday at 10:00a
Duration: 1 hour
Savannah’s first Methodist Church, Wesley Monumental Church, was established in 1807 and was located at the corner of Lincoln Street and Oglethorpe Avenue. In 1862 Wesley Chapel was closed, and the two churches became one, known as Trinity Church.
Trinity Church also owned the lot facing Calhoun Square, and by 1874 plans were in place for building a new church building on the lot. Ground breaking for the new building was held on June 30, 1875 and the cornerstone laying ceremony was on August 10, 1875.
Because of financial woes during the period of reconstruction and a catastrophic yellow fever epidemic, work proceeded slowly. It was May 12, 1878, when the first phase of the construction was completed and the street-level area was occupied. Twelve more years would pass before the sanctuary on the second floor was finished and was dedicated on May 30, 1890. The steeples and the stucco were not in place at that time.
The beautiful memorial windows of European stained glass were in place, each one dedicated to one of Methodism’s historic personalities. The “Wesley Window”, which faces the pulpit from the rear balcony, shows life-sized busts of John and Charles Wesley.
The church is patterned after Queen’s Kirk in Amsterdam, Holland. It is in the Gothic architectural style with spires measuring 136 and 196 feet in height. The height of the sanctuary from floor to ceiling is 43 feet. On 1946 and in 1953 fire had caused extensive damage but due to a steel ceiling in the sanctuary, which had been installed in 1902, the fire was contained and the sanctuary saved from destruction.
The magnificent Noack Organ, designed and built by Fritz Noack of the Noack Company of Massachusetts, was dedicated on February 19, 1985. The gothic style of the organ case is a beautiful addition to the sanctuary and is compatible with the architectural style of the church building.
The Wesley Monumental Church is one of the handsomest Methodist churches in the South. This Gothic Revival church built in 1868, pays tribute to brothers John Wesley and Charles Wesley. John Wesley founded the movement that became the Methodist denomination. His brother Charles Wesley wrote the words to about 6000 Christian hymns including “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing,”