The church of Christ was established in New Smyrna Beach, Florida in 1936. The first meeting place was in a school building that has since burned down. Three years later in 1939, the church bought a small house at 670 Dora Street to use as a meeting house. It’s difficult to see in this old photo, but the sign on the house says, “CHURCH of CHRIST“. Salvaged from those days is an old wooden box that used to hang at the Florida East Coast Railway station where the church used to put flyers for people to pick up and read about the church in New Smyrna Beach. The house still stands today as a private residence. Click here to view Florida historical documents regarding the early congregation.
Nine years later in 1948, property was purchased on Magnolia Street, which at the time was the Main Street through town on which all traffic going North and South traveled. A new building was built and a dedication ceremony for the new building was conducted on September 26, 1948. The church still has a transcript of the sermon in its files.
Sometime later, a bypass (Dixie Freeway) was constructed around New Smyrna which is present day Route 1. An old cement street marker pillar from days gone by stands across the street from 303 Magnolia Street at Sides car lot.
Progress on our new facility seemed to be fraught with endless delays and problems. The church continued to persevere until September 29, 2010 when we finally were able to get the property annexed into the City of New Smyrna Beach and obtained a building permit to start construction. On Sunday, October 10, 2010 a ground breaking ceremony was held on the property with some of our members. The photo to the left was taken on that day. The Mayor of New Smyrna Beach, Adam Barringer, was present and spoke at the ground breaking ceremony. He is standing on the far right of the photo. Four of our longstanding members were chosen to hold the shovels and make the ceremonial ground breaking. From left to right they are Dean West, Jim Mize, Kat Essary, and Wendell Phillips. Wendell’s family was a part of the original congregation back in the 30’s and his father, Ralph Phillips and Charlie Robbins purchased the land that the church built on back in the 40’s.
We moved into our new building in 2011. This picture was taken Sunday, March 13, 2011.
In the year 2000, Wendell Phillips, one of our long standing members prepared a list from memory of those who have served as ministers of the church from its inception. They are:
- 1930’s: Roy Brown -J.P. Prevatt
- 1940’s: Roy Osbourn – Earl Edge – Barry Anderson – Walter Henderson – Kenneth Plet? – Arthur Butler – Arthur Buffington
- 1950’s: E.L. Duncan – Mayhew Perry – W.W. Andrews
- 1960’s: H.M. Phillips – L.L. Shastain – Mayhew Perry
- 1970’s: Charles A. Lucas – Arthur Coggins
- 1970’s and 80’s: Tom Brown – Leroy Potter – Charles Wilson
- 1990 – 1994: Clay Shaw
- 1994 – 1999: David Hall
- 1999 – Present: Ted Kuzma