A Visit To La Grange and Immanuel Episcopal Church

My parents live in the beautiful little town of LaGrange, Tennessee located high on a bluff overlooking the Wolf River –  just across the Mississippi-Tennessee state line.  A Sunday afternoon drive with daughter and a picnic lunch in tow found us headed north for a visit.  LaGrange is a peaceful small town that was an Indian trading post and then a thriving settlement by 1825.  The street plan was patterned after Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – you would be hard pressed to recognize this today!

The afternoon was beautiful and so I cajoled my father into a spin around town with camera in hand.  As it happened, good fortune was a passenger also!  The Episcopal Church had celebrated its’ fall homecoming this day and the church looked absolutely beautiful…

Immanuel Espiscopal Church

In the 1820s the John Anderson family migrated to the town and Mr. Anderson’s mother-in-law, being a devout Episcopalian, was disturbed to find that there were no churches in LaGrange.  It was largely through her efforts that Immanuel Church was organized, the first Episcopal Church west of the Tennessee River.  The year was 1832…

Immanuel Episcopal Church LaGrange Fall 2013 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Years ago we became friends with a couple who ran a bed and breakfast on their property.  At the time they were living in Memphis and coming out to LaGrange for weekends.  Ever the industrious pair, all that they touched became beautiful.  They have since retired and live in LaGrange full-time and are very active communicants at Immanuel.  When I got out of my car, I immediately knew that their hands had been busy…

LaGrange Fall 2013

gorgeous swags of fall splendor adorned the front doors…

Immanuel Episcopal Church

I was happy to have arrived while they were still there and was invited inside…

Immanuel Episcopal Church

wonderful deep window sills each adorned with pumpkin and magnolia…

Immanuel Episcopal Church

hand embroidered altar hangings…

Immanuel Episcopal Church

 Immanuel Episcopal Church

even the hymns are announced with a bouquet…

Immanuel Episcopal Church

behind the Paschal candle you can see the stairs to the old slave gallery – one of two in existence in this country…

Immanuel Episcopal Church

This building was consecrated in 1843 and is the classical style of rural English village churches…

Immanuel Episcopal Church

Union forces occupied La Grange from June 1862 until the end of the Civil War.  Immanuel was used as a Union hospital and the building suffered as did many  in the town.  La Grange really never recovered after the war but the inhabitants of the tiny town today have done a great job with restoration and preservation.

The tiny “downtown”…

La Grange Tennessee

La Grange Tennessee

our friends maintain the old “general store” as a gathering place full of nostalgia…

general store

table arrangements from the church lined up in front…

general store

inside is full of treasures…

general store

places to sit and play games or just watch the evening news…

general store

there is a little free library (one is in the works for the Eudora Welty House and Garden!)…

little free library

the home beautifully restored by our friends…

antebellum house OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I am so lucky to have this couple as friends and so grateful for all of their efforts at restoration and preservation.

They are tireless soldiers!

dog wearing military medals

Drawing tomorrow for the giveaway – go here if you missed your chance to win!

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Comments

  1. I absolutely love historical churches and small towns. Your town is beautiful!

  2. Martha Nicholson says:

    Love this charming place. The General Store is a warm fuzzy!.. Like at mustard colored long bench out front…:)

    • mnestorc@aol.com says:

      It is truly a special place! I could spend hours in there looking at all of the memorabilia!

  3. Debbie Cannon says:

    One of my favorite places! Would love to go back for a visit!

  4. Kandy Sims says:

    What a charming little town and beautiful church!!!

  5. Since we both grew up and lived in Memphis til a couple of years we made many trips to La Grange. The General Store is great and the old homes are beautiful. It was a great Sunday afternoon drive.