Fairview Presbyterian Church was established in the Fall of 1786 and is the oldest Presbyterian Church in Greenville County, South Carolina. The church was named “Fairview” in honor of the old gray stone church in Antrim County, Ireland, from which its founders came to America in 1773.
Three Peden brothers, John, Samuel, and David Peden, established the church with their nephew, James Alexander, and good friend, James Nesbit. They originally built a small log house of worship at this place. The land was granted in lieu of payment to the soldiers of the Revolutionary War.
Our present building is the fourth one, and was completed in 1858. The square columns of the portico contain brick from the previous sanctuary on this location. The building is on the National Register of Historical Places, being considered a “fine example of the vernacular classic revival widely used in the deep South until 1865” (Clemson University Department of Architecture).
On these grounds in 1861 a group of men gathered to form the Bozeman Guard which marched to the defense of the Confederate States, joining with General Wade Hampton in Columbia, South Carolina.
In our rock walled cemetery are buried seven Revolutionary War soldiers, as well as fifty Confederate soldiers. The oldest marked grave in the cemetery is that of Elizabeth Alexander, 1797.
Two historic customs we still observe are: Offering the Lord’s Supper to communicants seated on benches at long tables (following the pattern of the Scottish Reformer John Knox); and receiving offerings in a cloth pouch affixed to a long slender wooden rod.
We joined with the Presbyterian Church in America soon after its foundation in 1973. The PCA came into existence because of a need for a strongly scriptural, evangelical, and Reformed witness to Christ which truly honors God and the authority of his Word. Our doctrinal statement is the historic Reformed creed known as the Westminster Confession of Faith, originally composed in 1647 in England.