John Wesley Jenkins was a Methodist Minister traveling the circuit during the late 1800s. As a devout Methodist, Jenkins envisioned an orphanage dedicated solely to aiding and housing children and widows of the Methodist faith. To realize his vision, Jenkins wrote letters to The Christian Advocate and The North Carolina Christian Advocate and finally, after appearing before a Methodist conference, convinced enough fellow church members to fund the project. The facility, called The Methodist Home was approved to by state legislature March 6, 1899 to be built in Raleigh. It opened November 29, 1900 and the first child admitted, Cassie Bright, on January 7, 1901.