Our History

First United Methodist Church is a community of faith nestled in the heart of downtown Dandridge, Tennessee. The beauty of God’s mountains enfolds the current church campus located at the corner of Meeting and Main Streets. Although the first deed held by Methodists in Dandridge dates back to 1822, the ministry of the church has not been bound by a building or allowed to be stifled by outside struggles. The original part of the current building dates to about 1890 and was built by the Northern Methodist Episcopal Church.  It stands as a constant reminder of the congregation’s ties to the Union during the Civil War as well as of the fact that besides dividing families, the war divided churches.  In the early 1940s, the construction of Douglas Lake took the Southern Methodist Episcopal Church’s building. However, the money that the Southern Church received from Tennessee Valley Authority was given to the Northern Church to be put toward the building fund for a new church site.  World War II restrictions on construction impeded the process of building a new church for the growing congregation.  Finally in 1949, ground was broken on a new lot. Soon TVA filed suit saying that the proposed building would cover their easement to a storm drain. After years of preparing and waiting to build a new church, the congregation resolved – in a December 1950 meeting of the full membership – to renovate its current facilities. Many renovations and additions have followed.