Inspired by circuit preachers John and Pres Sanders at a revival held at Shake Rag School and Antioch Baptist Church in 1913, the faithful Christians of the Fairview community decided to build a church. Mr. Bart Young deeded a parcel of land and some other landowners donated wood. “Hut” McConnell, Fairview’s first Sunday School Superintendent, related:
“One cold, frosty morning here came a crowd of the neighbors with their team and wagons…I was invited to go along. We had plenty of wagons, plenty of fun, and plenty of men, which made the work light…Work was begun immediately on the building with Mr. Chris Hannah as boss carpenter, and anyone who had any experience in carpenter work joined in. So the church was built…”
Reverend John Sanders was the first pastor and according to Mr. McConnell, he “went about spreading sunshine and doing good.” On the first Sunday in the first building, February 18, 1914, the members numbered more than 40. The second church building was completed in 1973. On June 30, 2003 (with a membership of more than 1,200) the congregation moved into the present facility located directly across the street from the original site.
Over the ensuing years, the membership has grown and more buildings have been built. The reason for this growth is not buried deeply in church doctrine. The parishioners simply continued to worship God, bring forth children, charm newcomers, add them to their church family, and sometimes, to their own families as well.
Over 100 years later, Fairview has a growing congregation of more than 1,900 members and an outreach into our community and around the world. Fairview has planted two churches in Blount County—Sycamore Tree and The Potter’s House in Vonore.