Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church
Rahway, Union County
founded 1849, built 1892
Trinity was not the first Methodist church erected in Rahway, but it has a very prominent location, which in itself is unusual. Because the earliest settlers were usually affiliated with the Presbyterian Church, one normally finds a Presbyterian church very near the center of town; because of their reputation as a somewhat disreputable subculture dating from the days of their undisciplined and occasionally notorious revivals, Methodist were usually relegated to the outer fringes of a town. In Rahway, it may be the center has shifted from Grand Street where both the First Methodist and the First Presbyterian churches are located, to Main Street, nearer to the railroad station.
The gabled bay with the large window between the towers is not really a transept, but it provides a neat way of getting more light in the interior. Except for the barely perceptible buttresses on the edge of this slight projection, the church has no buttresses. The stylized decorative arcading at the top of the towers complements the round arch windows of the building.
This is the congregation's second church, and it was originally named the Second Methodist. The building committee specified they wanted a church not to exceed 60' x 100', seat 400, heated by steam and have a kitchen in the basement." Charles G. Jones was the architect, and the construction contract was awarded to Patrick Sheridan in competitive bidding.