First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) is part of a movement that began in the early 1800's called the Restoration Movement. It's beliefs are simple:
All Christians are brothers and sisters in Christ.
All Christians are ministers of the Gospel.
We have no creed but Christ.
We have no book but the Bible.
We have no law but love.
In seeking to recreate the New Testament Church, we believe in salvation through Jesus Christ only, and recognize the practice of believer's baptism by immersion and of the celebration of the Lord's Supper every Sunday. We practice the belief that God revealed Himself to humankind through the incarnation of Jesus Christ and, as His followers, we have the joy and responsibility of serving Him in this world by:
Sharing the message of salvation with those who don't know Him.
Working to further the Kingdom of God on earth through outreach ministries.
Faithfully working together as a body to love and support our other Christians in the struggles of life and in carrying out our various ministries.
Sometime after beginning of the 20th century, Princeton had a population of five to six hundred people. Around 1905, a corps of engineers came in to survey for a new railroad which was to run from Norfolk, VA, to Deepwater, WV. By 1906, construction had begun on the railroad, and in 1907 the first train came to Princeton. With the establishment of the Virginian Railway shops in Princeton, the town began to boom.
At that time a great number of families in Princeton held membership in the various Christian Churches in the County: Goodwin’s Chapel, Willowton, Bluefield and Calfee Memorial. Since there was no Christian Church in Princeton, these families worshipped with the Baptists, the Presbyterians, and the Methodists, but longed for a church of their own.
Hal Bailey, Milton Warren Christie, and Brother James H. (Uncle Jimmy) Johnston spent much of their time talking and visiting among those of like faith. Late in 1906 or early in 1907, at the urging of these three, about twenty Princetonians met to make arrangements for a revival to be conducted by the Rev. George F. Crites of Hiram, Ohio, who was associated with the Ohio Christian Missionary Society. The revival was held in the spring of 1907 in the Old Presbyterian Church on North Walker Street. At the conclusion of the revival, the church was organized with fifty-two members.
Recognizing that Princeton was developing in the direction of the train depot at the end of Mercer Street, the congregation borrowed two thousand dollars from Mrs. Joe Alvis in July of 1907 to buy the large lot at the corner of Eighth and Straley on which they erected a nine thousand dollar church in the English style with a bell tower. The cornerstone was laid in 1909 and the church was dedicated on July 24, 1910. Stained glass windows were donated by families of the church and one large window was donated by the Odd Fellows. This original building served the congregation from 1910 to 1928 and was replaced by the current building, which was built in two stages. To accommodate the growing membership, plans were drawn in 1921 for an education building with a large fellowship hall; however, work was not started on this building until 1927. The cornerstone laying was held on October 14, 1928 and the finished building was dedicated in 1929. The need for a sanctuary for worship was great but the church was heavily in debt. Under the leadership of Pastor Frank L. Stuck, members worked to be “Debt Free by ’43.” On May 3, 1948, members were happy to witness the ground-breaking for a Gothic-style structure on the site of the first church. This new addition has a sanctuary that seats 500 people, a chapel that seats 80 people, classrooms, and a ladies parlor.
Completed in early 1951, the building was dedicated on March 18. 1951. Parking became a problem for many members. In 1991, under the leadership of Peery Mooney, the much-needed parking lot on the west side of the church was purchased from the City of Princeton.