Historical Marker #2379 commemorates the life of Bishop John Monroe Moore, an important religious leader from Butler County.
Moore was born on a farm near Morgantown on January 27, 1867. He began school at age seven and, at age seventeen, graduated from Morgantown's subscription high school. He taught school in Huntsville (Butler Co.) for two years and then attended Lebanon College in Ohio, receiving a B.A. in 1887. He taught school in Rochester (Butler Co.) for one year and then in Texas for three years. To prepare for a university teaching position, in 1891 he enrolled in a graduate program at Yale University. There, his focus changed from math to philosophy and psychology. He received his Ph.D. from Yale in 1895, one of the first ever granted by an American university.
A staunch Southerner, Moore sought a teaching position at any Southern university. When no position was available, he began preaching in the Methodist Episcopal Church, South (M.E.C.S.). He served as pastor of several churches in Missouri and Texas from 1898 to1910. He was the managing editor of "The Daily Christian Advocate" from 1906 to1909, and served as Secretary of the Department of Home Missions of M.E.C.S. from 1910 until he was elected to the Episcopacy in 1918. His first assignment as Bishop was in Brazil for four years. He served the next sixteen years with churches in the South.
Bishop Moore played a critical role in the successful Joint Commission on Unification of the Methodist Episcopal, Methodist Episcopal South, and Methodist Protestant Churches. He also had a major role in the development of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, and served as one of its trustees. The Moore Chapel in its Perkins School of Theology was named in his honor.
Bishop Moore retired from the active episcopacy in 1938. Ten years later he published his autobiography, "Life and I." He died on July 30, 1948, and was laid to rest in Hillcrest Mausoleum in Dallas, Texas.