Chriesman Church

ChriesCh Chriesman Church

Chriesman United Methodist Church (Click Image to enlarge)

We have Worship Service every Sunday Morning at 9:00.
In addition we have Hymn Singing on the 4th Sunday of each month starting at 6:00PM.
Please join us at each of these functions. This is your personal invitation.

Chriesman United Methodist Church:
The First 160 Years

Thank you for joining our 160th Anniversary Celebration! We thought you’d like to know a little bit of the history of our church and community.

In 1822, at the start of Stephen F. Austin’s colony in the then-Mexican territory called Texas, Horatio Chriesman, a Methodist layman and opponent of slavery, was one of the first Anglo surveyors of this strange new country, platting what was then christened “Yellow Prairie.”

By 1839, three years after Texas won its independence, Yellow Prairie Methodist Episcopal Church was organized in the home of Alexander Thompson, a prominent Methodist layman. In 1841, Yellow Prairie, then a part of Milam County, saw its share of well-attended camp meetings and revivals.

A thriving community, Yellow Prairie was located on the east side of what is now Highway 36 and was situated next to what is now known as Chriesman Cemetery. The Yellow Prairie School was north of the cemetery, and the Methodist Episcopal church building stood at the east entrance of the cemetery. All this land had been provided by Horatio Chriesman.

In 1880, the railroad was built west of what is now Highway 36, and a post office was established along the rail line. Four years later, postal regulations required that the post office and railroad stop have the same name, at which time the community of Chriesman was established along the rail line and named in honor of Horatio Chriesman. (Chriesman himself had actually lived near modern-day Deanville but was buried in Chriesman Cemetery. You can see the historical marker on his grave there today.)

Following the growth spurred by the railroad, the school moved to modern-day Chriesman around the turn of the 20th century, and, in 1919, the church building was relocated to Chriesman, both using land donated by the Gasper and Philp families. With the building of Highway 36 and the wane of the railroad, Caldwell grew, and Chriesman saw the loss of most of its businesses and employment. Its school was consolidated with Caldwell. Today, Chriesman features a thriving Community Center, a growing United Methodist Church, a brand-new post office, an annual Watermelon Festival, and antique and crafts businesses. The surrounding land is home to many ranches and families.

Our congregation and community still boast descendants from the families who founded the original church, including the Sewells, Kornegays, Boedekers, Gaspers, Loves, Speckmans, and Winklers, among many others. We carry that tradition on into the 21st century and the next 160 years.

Juanita Kitchen and Randy Beeler

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