Methodists form congregation in Ravenna neighborhood of Seattle in 1903.

  • By Paul Dorpat
  • Posted 2/25/2001
  • Essay 3019
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In 1903, Methodists form a congregation in the Ravenna neighborhood of Seattle. The congregation was formed as a home mission of Seattle's second oldest congregation, the First Methodist Protestant church (also call the Brown Church) which was begun in 1864 by the Reverend Daniel Bagley.

The congregation met in the main hall of the old and defunct Seattle Female Hall until it burned to the ground in 1911. It then built a modest sanctuary at southeast corner of NE 60th Street and 33rd Avenue NE. The "Little Brown Church on the Hill" enjoyed a panoramic prospect of the Ravenna neighborhood for which it was then still the only Protestant Mecca. The land about it had long since been logged off, but Ravenna's verdant urban landscape was as yet in the gardener's imagination.

In 1995, Leonard Jones, one of the congregation's oldest members, remembered how the Little Brown Church was packed with neighborhood kids for Sunday school.

In 1923, an 8-year-old Leonard, his younger sister, Mary Bell, and the rest of the children joined the congregation's move in 1923 directly across 33rd Avenue to the much larger brick parish. For a time following the move, the Little Brown Church was used by the neighborhood's Catholic congregation, the Church of the Assumption.


Paul Dorpat, "Now & Then: Little Brown Church on the Hill," The Seattle Times, Northwest Magazine, October 29, 1995.

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