First United Presbyterian Church - 1321 9TH AV

 Print Listing Historical Name - First United Presbyterian Church
Style - Late 19th and 20th Century Revivals/Tudor Revival
Built Year - 1920
State ID - 5WL3094

Description - This Tudor Revival style church is a t-shaped, two-story, brick and stone structure with a composition shingle, gabled roof. Roof features include a brick and stone parapet and a flat roofed tower with castellations. It has a concrete foundation and brick and stone exterior. The main facade is broken into three bays and contains a three-door entrance. The entry-steps are newer rock aggregate with iron railings and glass and iron exterior lamps. Windows are arched, stained glass and have stone sills and surrounds. A light colored brick breezeway addition connects an obviously newer, modern chapel addition.

Historical Background - The First Presbyterian Church played a significant role in the character and development of organized religion in Greeley. Town founder Nathan C. Meeker advocated the creation of a non-denominational community church to serve the religious needs of entire Union Colony. Due to a decided lack of orthodoxy coupled with strong moral beliefs concerning family values and temperance, most colonists favored that idea. However, most also favored hiring a preacher of their own denomination. The Presbyterians were the first to withdraw from the Union Church concept and incorporate their own organization. Rev. Sheldon Jackson, Superintendent of Home Missions for the Rocky Mountain District Presbyterians, denounced the union project while arguing strongly for denominational churches. One advantage, he argued, would be financial assistance from outside sources to build churches and hire preachers. On August 21, 1870 at the Union Hall, Rev. Jackson formed the First Presbyterian Church of Greeley with ten members. Other denominations, including Baptist, Methodist Episcopal, Protestant Episcopal, and United Presbyterian, quickly followed suit. Therefore, the First Presbyterian Church is strongly associated with the unique development of religious activity in Greeley. The Presbyterians built their first church building in 1872, and a second, larger ediface in 1891. In 1920, the present Tudor Revival structure standing at 9th Avenue and 14th Street across from the Meeker Home was constructed. In 1961, the First Presbyterian Church merged with the United Presbyterian Church.