United Methodist Church
Marker No: 17094
27 x 42 Aluminum Subject Marker
Location: 354 South Mt. Auburn Street, Goliad
Marker Text: The Fannin Street United Methodist Church began in 1872. One of the earliest African American churches in Goliad County, it was founded after emancipation when many former slaves who previously worshipped with their owners established their own churches. Originally known as the Methodist Episcopal Church, the name changed to Fannin Street United Methodist in 1968. Built in the traditional style of small country churches, Fannin Street United Methodist Church has a steeply gabled roof and a cupola with four openings. The bell was made by the Cincinnati Bell Foundry.
The church experienced several disasters including a hurricane in 1886 at its first site at Horseshoe Bend, but the tornado that struck here on May 18, 1902 destroyed the church and killed fifty parishioners. A marker was erected at the Lott Cemetery in honor of those buried there. The church was rebuilt in 1903 and later improvements included a pastor’s study, choir room, gallery and fellowship hall. A third disaster hit the church on Sept. 13, 1976 when lightning destroyed the steeple, leaving only the mark of a cross. The bell was unable to be replaced and was mounted in front of the church. The church has been involved in community life that included baptisms in Coleto Creek, the anniversary of the church, and the singing rally held at different community churches. Although these activities ended in the 1970s, the church continues to operate a booth at Goliad Market Days and hold worship services at the La Bahia nursing home. The church survived many setbacks but the congregation endures and exemplifies the phrase, “the church is not the building; it’s the people.” (2012)