Our History

Gatesville was a rapidly growing frontier town of about one thousand inhabitants when The Gatesville Presbyterian Church was organized in 1885 as a Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Outstanding Presbyterian evangelists were instrumental in organizing many churches in the vast area that was then included in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church’s Central Texas Presbytery. Gatesville remained a part of that presbytery until 1972, when it became part of the Presbytery of the Trinity and Presbytery of the Covenant. In 1983, it became a part of the Grace Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church (USA) upon the reunion of the PCUS and UPCUSA.

Clippings from the “Christian Observer” in 1885 and 1887 give accounts of the progress of the church. They state that the church organized in March of 1885 with sixteen members and they were concerned considerably about finding a suitable place to meet. The little band of Presbyterians bought a lot at a cost of $150.00, and built a neat church, ceiled and painted it, bought an organ, stove, a marble-top table, and put blinds to the windows, costing forty dollars.

In 1899, the J. C. Chrisman “cow lot” on Main Street and his home on Leon Street were purchased and the church was moved to this location.

At the turn of the century the church membership numbered seventy-two and became known as the First Presbyterian Church of Gatesville. The first Vacation Bible School in Gatesville was held at the First Presbyterian Church in 1929. On March 10, 1935, the church celebrated its 50th anniversary with a pageant depicting many interesting events in its history. In 1950, it was decided that a new building should be constructed. It was a happy occasion when, on March 2, 1952, the congregation celebrated its 67th anniversary in the new building at 1110 E. Main Street.

On April 28, 1985, the church celebrated its 100th anniversary. The centennial year was an exciting year for the congregation with all the special activities and work that went on in preparation for the celebration. In 1986, a fund drive was initiated to build a church annex, that would include needed Sunday School rooms and kitchen and dining facilities.

On February 5, 2017, A majority of members left First Presbyterian Church and the Presbyterian Church (USA) and joined with ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians and adopted the name The Presbyterian Church of Gatesville, Texas.