History

The people of Edenton Street United Methodist Church have worshiped God on the corner of Edenton and Dawson Streets in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina since 1811. Edenton Street was founded that year following a conference of Methodist ministers in Raleigh under the leadership of Bishop Francis Asbury.

Since our founding, Edenton Street has shared fully in the life of this community and the nation, both in the times of prosperity and in the impacts of the Civil War, two World Wars and other conflicts, and the Great Depression. For over two centuries, Edenton Street has sought to faithfully fulfill its mission: Sharing Christ from the Heart of Raleigh.

Edenton Street’s traditional worship services are held in the fourth of our sanctuaries. Our third sanctuary was lost in a great fire in July 1956, but rebuilding started immediately. The first service of worship in the present sanctuary was celebrated on February 2, 1958.

Edenton Street also holds contemporary worship services on Sunday mornings in Kerr Fellowship Hall of the Curtis Fellowship Center, completed in 2002. Between the sanctuary and the fellowship center stands the Poindexter Memorial Building, opened in 1937 as the third Sunday School building on this site and home to Sunday school classes, Bible studies, staff offices, the nursery and the Joseph G. Brown Chapel.

In 2015, Edenton Street launched its first additional campus, Church on Morgan, located in downtown Raleigh on E. Morgan Street.

Edenton Street has a deeply rooted tradition of outreaching missions, both at home and abroad. One of this church’s first ministers, Melville B. Cox, left his appointment here in 1831 to serve as the first Methodist missionary to Africa. He died in service in Liberia in 1833.

Around the turn of the last century, Edenton Street’s Mary Piscud served as a missionary in Brazil, and Frances Burkhead entered the mission field in China. Others have followed in their footsteps. In the past two decades, volunteers from Edenton Street have maintained regular contacts with missions in Liberia and Mexico and have undertaken special mission projects in the Appalachians, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Spain, France and elsewhere. Closer to home, Edenton Street annually supports numerous mission programs in and around Raleigh, and in 1999 we undertook a major multi-year commitment to support eastern North Carolina’s recovery from Hurricane Floyd.