The story of Canal Fulton United Methodist Church begins in 1808, when the first European settlers came to live among the Native Americans already dwelling on the banks of the Tuscarawas River.
Sometime between 1810 and 1812, Rev. James Dixon began preaching at the cabin of William Crites, who, along with Jeremiah Atkinson, Matthew Metcalf, Richard Hardgrove, John Evans and Richard Lytle had begun to settle and improve the land. Dixon was a circuit rider who preached the Gospel wherever folks would listen – cabins, taverns, barns, open fields or in the shade of a tree.
John Somerville was appointed to the Tuscarawas Circuit in 1812 and probably organized the first Methodist society here. In 1831 the permanent Methodist church building was constructed on River Road just north of our present site.
In 1856, under the leadership of Rev. Luke S. Johnson, the present brick sanctuary was constructed. In 1888 extensive remodeling was done under the ministry of Rev. Thomas Struggles. An annex was added in 1915 during the term of Rev. J. L. Heron, at which time an organ and a piano were purchased, the church papered and stained glass windows were installed. A large education wing was built in 1964 with the most recent addition being completed in 1980.
Our journey is not done – God continues to move here on “the little brick church on the hill.”