First United Methodist Church of San Augustine. The Rev. Littleton Fowler (1803-1846), one of the first Methodist missionaries sent to the Republic of Texas, came to San Augustine in October 18376. Within two weeks, a lot was given across the street from this site, trustees named, money raised, and Augustus Phelps given a contract to erect a Methodist church building. Masonic Lodge officials supervised the laying of the cornerstone on January 17, 1838. The Rev. Fowler and General Thomas J. Rusk addressed the 500 to 800 persons who gathered for the occasion. In his journal, the Rev. Fowler called it the first cornerstone laid for a Protestant church "west of the Sabine River in the infant Republic." It was also hailed as the first cornerstone laid in a foreign mission of the Methodist Episcopal Church of the United States. Angered when his horse was turned loose while he was in church, Columbus Cartwright in 1897 donated an entire block for a new sanctuary, providing space for hitching horses and parking buggies. The present structure was erected on the donated property by 1911, when the Rev. Littleton Morris Fowler, son of the founder, served as pastor. Methodists have worshiped in the same block of San Augustine's Main Street for more than 140 years. #7604