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History of Clear Creek Baptist Church
Elkhorn Association Minutes (KY), 1887
By J. S. Kirtley

[p. 24]
The history of Clear Creek Church is calculated to stir sentiments of gratitude in the hearts of the pious for the vital relation in which she early stood to the religious life of our Association, and for the magnificent example of piety which she set in the early days of darkness.

In April, 1785, thirty persons, some of whom had been members at South Elkhorn, and others of whom had been converted in meetings held at private houses in the neighborhood the previous winter, were organized into a church, which was the second church organized north of the Kentucky River. Four ministers went into this organization, John Depuy, James Rucker, Richard Cave and John Taylor. The distinct office of pastor was not filled by either one of these ministers, but with singular good fellowship they exercised an oversight of the promising young church for one year's time, during which time twenty souls were baptized.

After that time John Taylor was chosen pastor, with but one disssenting voice, and served them for three years.

The first year of Clear Creek's history marks a great epoch in Kentucky Baptist affairs. Great Crossing and Bryan's Station churches were organized. A desire having been felt and expressed to form an Association for mutual aid, members from six churches met at Clear Creek October 1, 1785, and in that meeting the great Elkhorn Association was organized. How sacred the position of this old mother church in her relations to our other churches and our Associations!

One year after, Mr. Taylor, who by the way is grandfather of our Bro. J. W. Tate, Treasurer of the Sate of Kentucky, became pastor of this church he had baptized sixty of his neighbors. At this time the church furnishes us one of the earliest examples in pastoral support. She promised Mr. Taylor seventy dollars for the first year, and one hundred for the second, and though it may not all have been paid, it shows that she had grasped certain fundamental ideas. The church then numbered 150. Two preachers came out of this revival - Warren Cash and James Lee.

Factions arose after this revival, as is so apt to be the case when a large amount of unassimilated material, however good, is brought together. But no specially bad results came of it.

After Mr. Taylor's resignation another revival was enjoyed. Three ministers and three elders going about from house to house, two by two,
[p. 25]
so stirred the religious life of Christians, and aroused sinners that a most powerful awakening was brought about.

One hundred and fifty more were added, which brought the membership of the church up to 300.

At this time, this, as well as other churches seemed to be overdoing the business of disciplining her members, charges were brought for trivial offences and exclusions were frequent.

Mr. Taylor left them to remove down near the Ohio river in Boone County in charge of four preachers. About this time ten members went off and formed what they called a "Baptist Reformed" church on Salt River, but they disbanded in a short time. A few more went off on the Emancipation idea.

At the close of the last century the great revival that shook the State brought a refreshing to Clear Creek, and rounded the membership to 500. The church had now two preaching places, and at one of them a church was formed which took the name of Hillsboro. They soon began to lapse into rather a lifeless condition. Dissensions were at work; for twenty years her state was unhealthy. News of it was borne to Taylor, then living in Franklin County, and caused him much sorrow. A burdened spirit of prayer came over the more spiritual of the members, and their hearts turned to John Taylor as the man who might, under God, revive their drooping work. He heard their call, went over and took charge of the church and began to preach from house to house. A great revival followed, enveloping the whole community and spreading with power to Hillsboro, Versailles and Grier's Creek, the churches of mother Clear Creek.

Of this revival Mr. Taylor speaks: "If there is joy in heaven by the angels and the inhabitants there, with what pleasure must the angels for a year past have been hovering over the southwest corner of Woodford County."

This was a great work, for so many had left her by death, removal to the west, and by letter to form other churches, that the question of disbanding had been seriously discussed. During the interval Jacob Creath and Henry Toler had been pastors. After this revival Jas. Suggett served them for a time, followed by Theodorick Boulware, who left them and moved to Missouri in 1827.

Clear Creek's best days were in the past; from this time she grew gradually weaker. The records of the church between 1827 and 1865 are not at hand, and the historian cannot present an accurate account of her fluctuating condition.

In 1865 we find Rev. John L. Smith pastor, and the church moving along, sometimes distressed with weakness, the inevitable experience of a church whose territory is limited. In December 1865, Rev. D. W. Case was called to the pastorate. Through his influence at the January meeting 1866, the church resolved to disband on the next day, appointing Brethren J. W. Arnold and Bernard Giltner to sell all the church property and make a title to it, the proceeds to be used to supply distitute communities with preaching. Negotiations for the sale of the property had been made with Mr. Case, who shortly afterwards went into the current reformation. Before the sale was perfected the persistent devotion of several of the older members of the church to the old church home turned the minds of the members, and in May the disbanding act was rescinded.

Again the church felt her life leaping through her veins and started out upon a fresh career.

November, 1866, P. S. G. Watson was called to serve them as pastor for two Sundays in the month. In October, 1871, he was released for one Sunday to preach for the church at Salvisa. Shortly afterwards he resigned
[p. 26}
and A. S. Pettie was called in his place. Wm. Harris succeeded him in 1873.

In July, 1874, H. T. Daniel assumed the pastoral charge, and during his two years of service the church book records a precious revival and a deeper piety among themselves.

In April, 1876, a committee was appointed to consider the propriety of remodeling or rebuilding their house of worship.

In August, 1876, Eusebius Kirtley was called to the pastorate, but resigned after a year's service. J. A. Booth succeeded him, and preached till September, 1880. During this period a neat house of worship was built and some good additions made to the church.

Rev. Geo. Hunt assumed the pastoral charge in September, 1881, and October, 1882, H. T. Daniel held a very helpful meeting, which resulted in 8 additions to the church.

In Spetember, 1884, the Rev. George Hunt resigned the care of the church, since which time it has been pastorless. Two years ago advice was asked of the Associaiton as to what should be done. Her territory is limited, her membership is reduced to 18, and she wants the advice of the Association as to what she should do. Her history is precious to us; her influence has been known in heaven; may God direct her as to her future.

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