The History of
St. James Lutheran Church
St. James Lutheran Church was organized on March 11, 1890 under the leadership of “Supply Pastor” Rev. F.W.E. Peschau, D.D., Pastor of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Wilmington, NC. It was at the home of Mr. J.F. Laughery that six dedicated members met and formed the first congregation in Sumter. In 1896, construction was completed on the original church building located on the corner of North Washington and Republican (now Hampton) Street.
In 1940, the 50th Anniversary, an assembly hall, five class rooms, kitchen, rest rooms, and a pastor’s study were added. An adjacent lot at the rear of the church property was purchased and on it the Sterling Stoudenmire Educational Building was built.
In the early 1970’s, it became evident that in order for St. James Lutheran to carry on its’ work in the community and continue its’ growth, the congregation had to relocate. Property consisting of five acres on Alice Drive was purchased and construction of the new church complex began in 1976. The first Service in the new building was held Sunday, November 20, 1977, marking a new era in the life of the Congregation of St. James. The six charter members who organized the church in 1890 had faith and vision. We ask God’s help and guidance as we go forward into a new millenium of service through this church.
St. James Lutheran has gained much from this community and continually strives to give back to the community through social ministry projects and participation in numerous local activities. One of her greatest contributions to the church at large are the eight young men who entered the ministry from this parish: