First Cumberland Presbyterian Church

First Cumberland Presbyterian Church was organized by 28 people on July 16, 1837 in the log courthouse in Cleveland. It was the first church established in the city of Cleveland. For some years, the church used the log courthouse as its place of worship. The first building built by the early group was erected on the west side of Waterhouse Street, later known as Mill Row. Later, in 1857, a new building was built on the property of the existing building.

An interesting story is attached to the 1857 building. In 1954 an expansion program was begun to excavate a basement to increase space for the growing congregation. After a Session meeting, the church collapsed, killing one of the elders. News of the collapse made national headlines. Almost immediately, the congregation decided to rebuild on the site.

The current sanctuary was completed in 1956. It is constructed of Crab Orchard stone in gray and is trimmed with Indiana limestone. Gothic in its general design, the high gables are capped with limestone crosses. Inside, the Nave is accented by beautiful wood beams, punctuated with oak pews. The Chancel is finished in oak panels and is centered with a 20 foot wooden cross. The Narthex is beautifully accented with wood trim and doors. The simple beauty of the Sanctuary and the majestic detail of the stained glass windows clues one to the fact that the building is the house of God where people gather to worship.

Recent renovations to our clancel area have enhanced our opportunities for choir and instrumental performances and weddings. The addition of our Allen sanctuary organ and a versatile new keyboard has added to our worship experience.

From an extremely modest beginning in a log courthouse in 1837, First Cumberland has developed into a well-established congregation housed in a beautiful building. To the glory of God, First Cumberland Presbyterian is a signature church of Cleveland and the Cumberland Presbyterian denomination.
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