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Where the historic churches are

August 05, 2007

(A) Otterbein United Methodist Church, 108 E. Franklin St.

The congregation grew from Greeting's Society of United Christians and Otterbein's United Brethren in Christ in 1770. The present church was built in 1898, though there was a prior church at 138 W. Washington St., in 1805. The church was known as St. Paul Brethren in Christ until 1969, when it merged with the Evangelicals and the Methodists.

(B) John Wesley United Methodist Church, 129 N. Potomac St.

Francis Asbury brought Methodism to Hagerstown during the late 18th century. The congregation built its first church in 1825 along North Jonathan Street. The present gothic-style church was built in 1885, its towers completed in 1922. The church was known as St. Paul's Methodist Episcopal Church until 1969, when it merged with the Evangelical United Brethrens.

(C) Zion United Church of Christ, 201 N. Potomac St.

The German Reformed Church came to Hagerstown in 1770. The original church, named Zion Reformed Church, was built in 1774, rebuilt in 1867 and enlarged in 1893. The church adopted its current name in 1957, after merging with the Evangelical Synod and the Congressional Christian Churches.

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(D) Trinity Lutheran Church, 235 N. Potomac St.

A dispute over plans to renovate St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church (141 S. Potomac St., see K) caused the congregation to splinter and form Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in 1869. The new English, gothic-style church was built between 1909 and 1911, though a prior structure was built on Franklin Street in 1908.

(E) Asbury United Methodist Church, 155 N. Jonathan St.

The oldest black church in Hagerstown, founded in 1818 under the supervision of St. Paul's Methodist Episcopal Church (what is now John Wesley United Methodist Church, at 129 N. Potomac St., see B). The church was built in 1864; the church was rebuilt in 1879, was gutted by fire in 1973 and was rebuilt again.

(F) St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church, 218 W. Washington St.

Father James Frombach delivered mass to the region's Catholics in 1758 and would become the first pastor of St. Mary's. The church was built in 1790, would be rebuilt and would undergo several renovations up through the 1870s.

(G) Presbyterian Church of Hagerstown, 20 S. Prospect St.

Presbyterians held services at what is now Zion Reformed Church (201 N. Potomac St., see C) before organizing their own local church in 1809. The first church building was constructed on South Potomac Street some time between 1815 and 1817 (now Fundamental Baptist Church Inc., at 146 S. Potomac St., see J). The present church was built from 1873 to 1875.

(H) St. John's Episcopal Church, 101 S. Prospect St.

The church, was located south of town, before it was moved to Hagerstown in the mid 18th century. A new larger church was built on the present site of the Dagmar Hotel in 1817; the present church was built in 1872.

(I) Congregation B'nai Abraham, 53 E. Baltimore St.

Jewish settlement reached Western Maryland in 1762. Services were held at what was then Presbyterian Church of Hagerstown (now the location of the Fundamental Baptist Church Inc., see J) from 1840 to 1875; in 1892 the Synagogue of the Sons of Abraham at Hagerstown was founded, and a synagogue was built in 1895; in 1923, the congregation demolished the original synagogue and built the present yellow brick synagogue.

(J) Fundamental Baptist Church Inc., 146 S. Potomac St.

Four congregations used this site over the course of nearly two centuries. The Presbyterian Church of Hagerstown (now at 20 S. Prospect St., see G) built the church between 1815 and 1817. The First Christian Church occupied the church in 1876. Hagerstown Independent Church occupied the Church in 1961. Its current inhabitants, the Fundamental Baptist Church, bought the church in 1995.

(K) St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 141 S. Potomac St.

Lutheranism came to Hagerstown in the mid 18th century. The congregation was formed in 1770 and built a church in 1795. The church was remodeled several times up through 1910.

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