The story of how Centerville Presbyterian Church got started goes back to 1853…Official minutes noted that local citizens held a meeting to organize a church. Reverend W.W. Brier was called to chair the group. At the meeting held on June 4, 1853, nine people signed a petition requesting Reverend W.W. Brier to organize them into a church of Jesus Christ to be known as the Alameda Presbyterian Church and to be placed under the care of the Presbytery of San Francisco. It was resolved that the organization take place on the Sabbath, June 5, 1853, in J.M. Horner’s School House. Those who signed the petition were: Charles Hilton, Elizabeth Brier, Hannah Breyfogle, Chauncey Cornell, Charlotte Cornell, Charles Kelsey, Eliza Beard and James Selfridge.
These were the pioneers who founded the Centerville Presbyterian Church and organized the cemetery that nearly surrounded the church. Most of them were farmers or merchants in the Centerville area. Many were prominent citizens in the town of Centerville, and several helped found Alameda County. Their leader, Reverend William Wallace Brier, was born in Dayton Ohio in 1821 and was ordained in Indiana in 1848. He came to California in 1850 and served as District Secretary of Home Missions for California and Nevada. Reverend and Elizabeth Brier founded our church back in 1853 and we are still part of that legacy today!