Dresden Church Discovers 1923 Cornerstone Box Amid Tornado Rubble | New

Demolition crews and trustees discover a cornerstone box while clearing debris. The box will be opened by Discovery Park of America in a few weeks.

DRESDEN, TN – In Dresden, Tennessee, a congregation has lost its church, but not its hope.

Now, some of that hope surrounds an exciting relic found within the walls of the First United Methodist Church.

A cornerstone box has been located. Church administrators believe it was probably placed there for a dedication in 1923. The box was wrapped in bricks and apparently had the strength to withstand December storms.

“We thought wow,” said Wayne McCreight, a church administrator. “We were surprised at the foresight of some of our members in 1923. It’s amazing that they did that. We think of 99 years later, of the situation in 1923. So many things were different.

Although we cannot be sure what is inside the box, a clipping from the Dresden newspaper indicates that a crowd gathered on a Saturday afternoon to witness the laying of the first stone. According to this story, some of the items inside the box included a church membership list, a history about the church, a church journal, and hymns.


“I like to think about the people who were there during that time and what they thought about it, knowing that there’s a chance no one will ever see these items and what they decided to put at that time. there,” said exhibits director Jennifer Wildes. at the Discovery Center of America. This is where the church members decided to take their new artifact.

“We’re very excited and hope to be able to preserve what’s inside so we can give back some of what the church lost in the tornado,” Wildes said.

They decided not to open the box right away. Wildes said they have no way of knowing the conditions inside the box, so they need time to get all the preservation tools in order.

“It’s a small ray of hope that the church has now,” she said.


Pastor Brad Jordan said the box is indeed a piece of hope: hope that God has a plan.

“It’s a beacon of hope in the rubble,” Jordan said. “God put that box in there for us to find, and it will be a written history of our church.”

Of course, Local 6 will take you there when you open the box. It should be in the next few weeks.


The items will be displayed at Discovery Park on loan from the church.

The church has a rich history. The first church was built in 1833, when the county was created.

The First United Methodist Church was the first church in Weakley County.

They believe the cornerstone box was placed at a church dedication in 1923.

More recently, they built a family life center in 2008. Unfortunately, this building will also have to be demolished.

The church raises funds to rebuild. Those who would like to help can donate to the church GoFundMe country.

Checks can also be mailed to the church. They should be made out to Dresden FUMC and posted to 411 Morrow St., Dresden, TN 38225.

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