First United Methodist Church
The First United Methodist Church is a historic church building in Fairview, OK. The building is notable for its high style of architecture, a rarity in rural Oklahoma. It was designed by architect John C. Hope and constructed in 1939 in the Late Gothic Revival style. This style was a common choice for Christian religious architecture in the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Backstory and Context
The church was built in the late 1930s, a prosperous time for the community when ranching and other agricultural activities brought wealth to the town and encouraged population growth. During this period, many quickly-built wood-frame structures from the first decades of the century were replaced with permanent brick structures.
The building is an exemplar of the Late Gothic Revival style, which imitates the design of the great European cathedrals of the Late Middle Ages. Notably different from the Classical Revival style often used for government buildings, the Late Gothic Revival style emphasizes the separation of Church and State. Notable features include a steep gabled roof with a parapet, stained glass windows, and faux buttresses.
In 2004, the original congregation moved to a new church building located on the outskirts of town. The building is currently in use as the New Life Church and Community Center.
Image credit: Google Maps Street View.