Clynmalira United Methodist Church
A Brief History
Our church began as a Methodist Society known as “Pearce’s.” This Society met, on the Manor, at the home of John Putnam Pearce. When this group became too large for a private home, services were held in a school house at Stockton and Old York Roads.
In 1845–1846 a church was built nearby on property donated by John Putnam Pearce. This land was once part of an extensive tract granted to Charles Carroll by Lord Baltimore, and called Clynmalira after Charles Carroll’s home in Ireland. When Henry Carroll offered $100 to help build this church, he had only one stipulation—that it be named Clynmalira—a name derived from “clanmalier,” which means “clean air.”
Today the church at the corner of Stockton and Old York Roads in Phoenix looks very different from the church built 167 years ago. Originally, Clynmalira was only 30 feet by 40 feet and had two front doors—one for men and one for women. The building also had a gallery for slaves.
Through the years, many improvements have been made. An educational building was constructed in 1955. In 1969, the sanctuary was completely redecorated, repairs were made, and the choir lofts were raised. In 1970, an electronic bell system was installed. In 1999, a pipe organ was donated and installed in the sanctuary.
In 2012, the lower level of the educational building was refurbished with fresh paint and new flooring throughout. This space, used primarily for Sunday School and Youth Group activities, has been updated with modern electronic equipment and youth-friendly furnishings.
With God’s grace, Clynmalira will continue to grow and serve the community in the second millennium.