Douglas is a city in Coffee County, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 11,589. Douglas is the county seat of Coffee County and the core city of the Douglas, Georgia Micropolitan Statistical Area, which had a population of 50,731 as of the 2010 census. Douglas was founded in 1855 as the seat of the newly formed Coffee County, it was named for Senator Stephen A. Douglas from Illinois, a renowned stump speaker, the challenger to Abraham Lincoln in the presidential election of 1860. Douglas was chartered as a town in 1895 and as a city in 1897. In 1895, the railroad came to Douglas and the community began to boom. In 1909, the Georgia and Florida Railway located its offices in Douglas; the Eleventh District Agricultural & Mechanical School was established in Douglas in 1906. In 1927, South Georgia College was founded as Georgia's first state-supported junior college. During the 1920s and 1930s, Douglas was one of the major tobacco markets in the state. Much of this history is depicted in the Heritage Station Museum, located in the former Georgia and Florida Railway train station on Ward Street in downtown Douglas.
Douglas has two areas listed on the National Register of Historic Places: the downtown and Gaskin Avenue historic districts. They were added to the list in 1989. Douglas is located near the center of Coffee County at 31°30′27″N 82°51′3″W, it is 59 miles driving distance northeast of Valdosta, Georgia, 115 miles driving distance northwest of Jacksonville, 201 miles driving distance southeast of Atlanta. According to the United States Census Bureau, Douglas has a total area of 14.0 square miles, of which 13.4 square miles is land and 0.58 square miles, or 4.08%, is water. Major water bodies include Twenty Mile Creek, the Seventeen Mile River, Hilliard's Pond, once the ski show park "Holiday Beach"; as of the census of 2000, there were 10,639 people, 3,977 households, 2,656 families residing in the city. The population density was 825.7 people per square mile. There were 4,692 housing units at an average density of 364.2 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 48.41% White, 45.33% African American, 0.27% Native American, 1.09% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 3.80% from other races, 1.05% from two or more races.
Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.92% of the population. There were 3,977 households out of which 32.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.3% were married couples living together, 21.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.2% were non-families. 28.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.8% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.14. In the city, the population was spread out with 27.8% under the age of 18, 11.6% from 18 to 24, 26.3% from 25 to 44, 19.8% from 45 to 64, 14.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females, there were 83.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 77.0 males. The median income for a household in the city was $27,946, the median income for a family was $36,349. Males had a median income of $26,551 versus $20,145 for females; the per capita income for the city was $15,652. About 17.9% of families and 24.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 31.2% of those under age 18 and 22.0% of those age 65 or over.
Douglas is the principal city of the Douglas Micropolitan Statistical Area, a micropolitan area that covers Atkinson and Coffee counties and had a combined population of 50,731 at the 2010 census. U. S. Route 221 U. S. Route 441 Georgia State Route 31 Georgia State Route 32 Georgia State Route 135 Georgia State Route 158 Georgia State Route 206 Douglas Municipal Airport The Electric Department, locally owned and a member of Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia, services Douglas with power; the Natural Gas Department, member of both Georgia & American Public Gas Association and the Municipal Gas Authority of Georgia, provides gas to the area. Water and sewer service is conducted by the city's Water Department; the Public Works Department handles yard clippings, junk items, animal control for the city
United Methodist Church
The United Methodist Church is a mainline Protestant denomination and a major part of Methodism. In the 19th century, its main predecessor, the Methodist Episcopal Church, was a leader in evangelicalism; the present denomination was founded in 1968 in Dallas, Texas, by union of The Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Brethren Church. The UMC traces its roots back to the revival movement of John and Charles Wesley in England, as well as the Great Awakening in the United States; as such, the church's theological orientation is decidedly Wesleyan. It embraces both evangelical elements; the United Methodist Church has a connectional polity, a typical feature of a number of Methodist denominations. It is organized into conferences; the highest level is called the General Conference and is the only organization which may speak for the UMC. The church is a member of the World Council of Churches, the World Methodist Council, other religious associations. With at least 12 million members as of 2014, the UMC is the largest denomination within the wider Methodist movement of 80 million people across the world.
In the United States, the UMC ranks as the largest mainline Protestant denomination, the largest Protestant church after the Southern Baptist Convention, the third largest Christian denomination. In 2014, its worldwide membership was distributed as follows: 7 million in the United States, 4.4 million in Africa and Europe. In 2015, Pew Research estimated that 3.6 percent of the US population, or 9 million adult adherents, self-identify with the United Methodist Church revealing a much larger number of adherents than registered membership. The movement, which would become the United Methodist Church, began in the mid-18th century within the Church of England. A small group of students, including John Wesley, Charles Wesley and George Whitefield, met at Oxford University, they living a holy life. Other students mocked them, saying they were the "Holy Club" and "the Methodists", being methodical and exceptionally detailed in their Bible study and disciplined lifestyle; the so-called Methodists started individual societies or classes for members of the Church of England who wanted to live a more religious life.
In 1735, John and Charles Wesley went to America, hoping to teach the gospel to the American Indians in the colony of Georgia. Instead, John became vicar of the church in Savannah, his preaching was legalistic and full of harsh rules, the congregation rejected him. After two years in America, he returned to England dejected and confused. On his journey to America, he had been impressed with the faith of the German Moravians on board, when he returned to England he spent time with a German Moravian, passing through England, Peter Böhler. Peter believed a person is saved through the grace of God and not by works, John had many conversations with Peter about this topic. On May 25, 1738, after listening to a reading of Martin Luther's preface to Romans, John came to the understanding that his good works could not save him and he could rest in God's grace for salvation. For the first time in his life, he felt the assurance of salvation. In less than two years, the "Holy Club" disbanded. John Wesley met with a group of clergy.
He said "they appeared to be of one heart, as well as of one judgment, resolved to be Bible-Christians at all events. The ministers retained their membership in the Church of England. Though not always emphasized or appreciated in the Anglican churches of their day, their teaching emphasized salvation by God's grace, acquired through faith in Christ. Three teachings they saw as the foundation of Christian faith were: People are all by nature dead in sin and children of wrath, they are justified by faith alone. Faith produces outward holiness; these clergy became popular, attracting large congregations. The nickname students had used against the Wesleys was revived; the English preacher Francis Asbury arrived in America in 1771. He became a "circuit rider", taking the gospel to the furthest reaches of the new frontier as he had done as a preacher in England; the first official organization in the United States occurred in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1784, with the formation of the Methodist Episcopal Church at the Christmas Conference with Francis Asbury and Thomas Coke as the leaders.
Though John Wesley wanted the Methodists to stay within the Church of England, the American Revolution decisively separated the Methodists in the American colonies from the life and sacraments of the Anglican Church. In 1784, after unsuccessful attempts to have the Church of England send a bishop to start a new church in the colonies, Wesley decisively appointed fellow priest Thomas Coke as superintendent to organize a separate Methodist Society. Together with Coke, Wesley sent a revision of the Anglican Prayerbook and the Articles of Religion which were received and adopted by the Baltimore Christmas Conference of 1784 establishing the Methodist Episcopal Church; the conference was held at the Lovely Lane Methodist Church, considered the Mother Church of American Methodism. The new church grew in the young country as it employed circuit riders, many of whom were laymen, to travel the rural nation by horseback to preach the Gospel and to establish churches until there was scarcely any village in the United States without a Methodist presence.
With 4,000 circuit riders by 1844, the Methodist Episcopal Church became the largest Protestant denomination in the