Home of "Dumb John Randall"
The original meeting place of early members who would become Randall UMC.
The Brush Arbor
Members met outside under a brush arbor as the church numbers grew.
WE ARE PLANTED AND GROUNDED IN OUR HISTORY AND GROWN BY THOSE WHO CAME BEFORE US
In the 18th Century, as settlers migrated to the Yadkin Valley in Montgomery County (later divided to create Stanly County), they brought with them a sense of hope and a strong faith in God. They began worshipping together in private homes, notably the home of "Dumb John" Randall. When the number of worshipers increased beyond the limits of the house, they moved to a brush arbor nearby. When the change of seasons necessitated indoor worship, a log cabin was erected to replace the brush arbor. When the log cabin burned, a clapboard building was erected. When the clapboard building was crushed by a tree during a storm, it was rebuilt. Despite several remodeling projects spanning several generations, the building deteriorated and was ultimately replaced with a brick building. Regardless of the form of the meeting house, through unity of purpose, the church has endured for 225 years. Praise God for blessing His church since 1784. May the members of the church continue to worship together for at least another 200 years!
As the season changed, members needed a place to worship indoors so they constructed this log cabin.
This church was constructed after the log cabin was destroyed in a fire
Randall and Bishop Francis Asbury
Randall was frequently visited by Bishop Francis Asbury and wrote of his visits on several occasions.
In one of his journals, he wrote, "Friday, April 3, 1789- Preached at Randalls. I want more faith, patience, and resignation to the will of God in all things."
In another entry, he wrote, "Sunday, April 5, 1789- Joined by Dr. Coke. He preached at Randalls. He stayed with me for some time. We had a move while he was preaching. Some souls were brought to experience peace with God."
As a stop on Bishop Asbury's circuit, Randall by the River is the oldest church in Stanly County.
"Between the Rivers" provides a recorded history of Randall by the River, sponsored by Stanly Community College, that tells the relationship of Bishop Asbury and Randall by the River.
Randall by the River also hosts one of the oldest cemeteries in the state and has graves that date back to the 18th Century. Thanks to an Eagle Scout Project, there is now a memorial dedicated to the unmarked graves of enslaved people buried in our cemetery.