Five years before Iowa was granted statehood, the First Presbyterian Church of Fairfield, Iowa was organized with a membership of nine men and nine women. The date was October 2, 1841, less than two years after the village of Fairfield was established.
For two years worship services were held in the Court House or in the homes of members. In 1843 a frame building was erected at 107 E. Briggs Ave. This structure served the congregation until 1849, when “a fine brick building” was erected on the site of our present church at 200 S. Main St.
By 1854 the Church had 250 members and was the largest Presbyterian congregation in Iowa. Membership fell during the ensuing years of the Civil War and then rebounded.
By 1874 the congregation had outgrown its home and voted to raze the building and erect what is the nucleus of our present structure, including the main part of the current sanctuary and the Fellowship Hall below, completed in 1876. During the following years, membership fluctuated, peaking at 600 in 1925.
The last major building project began in 1929. An addition was constructed on the west side to enlarge the sanctuary and the lower level below, a new front entrance was added, and the “Kirk House” was built as an adjoining wing on the south, including classrooms and even a gymnasium. In 1971 a thorough remodeling of the sanctuary was completed, including the replacement of the original stained glass windows with beautiful new ones. Our “fine brick building” is the oldest church building in use in Fairfield.
The members of First Presbyterian Church have always been dedicated to the spreading of the gospel in word and deed to our community and the world. Our current membership totals 105. We have been established as a strong, friendly, involved, and supportive church with wonderful traditions and meaningful worship and music. We are proud of our heritage. We see ourselves as a living example of those who follow Christ’s teachings. It is our hope that in 2041 we will be celebrating 200 years of worship and service to God through the Lord Jesus Christ.