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Fernandina Beach in Nassau County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

First Presbyterian Church

American Presbyterian and Reformed Historical Site

 
 
First Presbyterian Church Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, August 12, 2012
1. First Presbyterian Church Marker
Inscription.  Organized in 1858, this congregation worships in Fernandina's oldest church building, and one of the oldest in Florida. This colonial structure rests on land donated by David L. Yulee, Florida's first Senator, and a former member of the church. The Reverend Archibald Baker was its first pastor.
In the 1860's the building was occupied by Federal troops. In response to pleas Major W.B.C. Duryee cancelled plans to melt the bell for its metal. Tolling of the original bell still calls worshipers to services.
 
Erected 1964 by The General Duncan Lamont Clinch Historical Society of Amelia Island. (Marker Number 279.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & ReligionWar, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the American Presbyterian and Reformed Historic Sites series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1858.
 
Location. 30° 40.308′ N, 81° 27.623′ W. Marker is in Fernandina Beach, Florida, in Nassau County. Marker is on North 6th Street near Alachua Street, on the
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left when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Fernandina Beach FL 32034, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Memorial United Methodist Church (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Lesesne House (about 400 feet away); Nassau County Historic Courthouse (about 400 feet away); Post Office Lamp Posts (about 500 feet away); U.S. Post Office–Customs House-Courthouse (about 500 feet away); Phelan-Verot House Built Prior to 1866 (about 600 feet away); St. Peter's Church (about 700 feet away); David L. Yulee (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fernandina Beach.
 
Regarding First Presbyterian Church. The Westminster Presbyterian Church is contributing building #13 within the Fernandina Beach Historic District which was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. This church is also one of 445 American Presbyterian and Reformed Historical Sites registered between 1973 and 2003 by the Presbyterian Historical Society (PHS), headquartered in Philadelphia. Approved sites received a metal plaque featuring John Calvin’s seal and the site’s registry number (PHS marker location unknown).

The following text is taken from the Presbyterian Historical Society website:

The First Presbyterian
First Presbyterian Church Marker, looking north along N 6th Street image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, August 12, 2012
2. First Presbyterian Church Marker, looking north along N 6th Street
Church of Fernandina Beach was organized in 1858. Work on the construction of its sanctuary, a simple New England-style meeting house, began the following year on land donated by David L. Yulee, the first United States senator from Florida and a member of the church. It is the oldest surviving church structure on the island and one of the oldest in the state. The congregation fled the town during the Civil War, when Federal troops were garrisoned in the church. During Reconstruction, the building was returned to the congregation largely undamaged, thanks to a Union soldier who became a member of the church. Stained glass was added in 1926. It was designated a Florida historic site in 1964.
 
First Presbyterian Church Marker, looking south image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, August 12, 2012
3. First Presbyterian Church Marker, looking south
First Presbyterian Church and Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, August 12, 2012
4. First Presbyterian Church and Marker
First Presbyterian Church Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Diane Murphy, February 2019
5. First Presbyterian Church Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 5, 2024. It was originally submitted on September 23, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 649 times since then and 26 times this year. Last updated on August 15, 2018, by Douglass Halvorsen of Klamath Falls, Oregon. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on September 23, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.   5. submitted on February 2, 2024, by Diane Murphy of Saint Cloud, Florida. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.

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Feb. 23, 2024