Althea Powell was a young woman, a Methodist who dreamed of having a church in her small
town. Althea was not just a dreamer. Althea was a doer, instead of just hoping, she decided to make it happen.
After a local preacher encouraged Miss Powell to pursue this calling she rode on horseback to canvas the community. She raised cash and pledges for the purpose of building a church and to purchase pews and an organ. Due to the efforts of Althea Powell, the Methodist Church in Tonganoxie was first chartered on June 24, 1869. The 20-by-30-foot brick church was built on the corner of Fourth and Green. Methodists have worshipped on that corner since. Gradually, through the year Tonganoxie United Methodist Church
expanded into what it is today.
In recent years, TUMC has continued to seek ways to serve the Tonganoxie community. In the
early 2000’s, the church started a day care called CareQuest, which has grown into a pre-k early
learning center, called Tonganoxie Early Prep. In 2019, TUMC celebrated 150 years of ministry in Tonganoxie where members and our past ministers gathered to celebrate.
In 2021, TUMC expanded its footprint downtown, Tonganoxie by voting to purchase the
neighboring building now called 304, which is the address of the building, 304 E. 4th St. The idea
is that people outside the church might encounter God in everyday places. With the new 304
facility, TUMC created a community gathering space called the 304 Venue.
In 2022 they launched Grounded Coffeehouse, which provided a needed coffee shop space in
Tonganoxie. It created a place people can come and be more “grounded.” The coffee shop
created new opportunities for youth to work and grow leadership skills. And, as a non-profit
ministry of the church, Grounded Coffeehouse’s proceeds go to local and international charity.
TUMC continues to seek to live into its core values of being Inviting, Connecting, Growing, and Serving.