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Chapter VII
The Early Baptist Churches that Remain in Kentucky

1801 - 1841
By Frank M. Masters
      A large number of churches were organized during this period, which are still in existence, but the records of only a limited number could be obtained. Some of the most important churches in historical value, formed during the forty years have been omitted, because no historic records were available. The history of some of the churches are very brief because of the brevity of the records. Many of the churches of this period observed the one-hundredth anniversary, and the century of the churches' activities, were rehearsed, but other churches passed over the event without notice.


      This church, located in Allen County, three miles north of Scottsville, was constituted, January 27, 1801, under the name Difficult and was probably gathered by the pioneer preachers, Joseph Logan and John Hightower, who settled early in that section. The names of the eight original members appeared as follows: James Atwood, and his wife, Margaret; William Strait, and his wife, Dorcas; William Thomas, and his wife, Mary; Thomas Spillman, and Polly Richey. Elder Joseph Logan was the first pastor, and led the church to unite with the Green River Association in September, 1801, and it reported eighty-eight members. Elder John Hightower was the second pastor, and was followed in succession until 1811 by Alexander Devin, Alexander Davidson, and Samuel Greathouse. The name of the church was changed from Difficult to Bethlehem. Elder Zachariah Emerson was the next pastor and continued until 1845, when he was succeeded by Elder Mordecai F. Ham, who served more than forty years.

      The Bethlehem Church remained a member of the Green River Association until 1830, and then became a member of Barren River, but in 1875 united with the Bays Fork Association, which assumed the name of Allen Association in 1913. The membership has been uniform throughout the church's history. In 1812, there were 112 members; in 1912, 142; and in 1942, 169. In 1948, the 147th year of the church's existence, there were 182 members, and Rev. H. B. Powell, pastor for one-fourth time.1


      The Trammell's Fork Church, also located in Allen County, was gathered in 1802 and the same year united with the Green River Association, reporting 70 members. Elder John Hightower was probably the first pastor, and was succeeded by Elder John Howard, who served "very acceptably a number of years." Elder J. Hickman, the next pastor, continued until about 1840, and was succeeded by Elder Younger Witherspoon. In 1843, Mordecai F. Ham was ordained to the ministry by the Trammells Fork Church. He immediately became pastor and served at least forty-five years.

      This church left the Green River Association in 1812, and joined with fifteen churches in forming the Gasper River Association, was one of thirteeen that formed Drake's Creek Association in 1820, and was one of three churches that entered into the formation of the Bay's Fork Association in 1841.2 In 1927 this church reported to the Allen Association, 146 members, and in 1948, 182 members, with preaching one Sunday a month, Rev. Odell Willoughby, pastor.


      New Liberty, long known as Twins Church, located in the northern part of Owen County, was constituted with thirty members, June 23, 1801. Elder John Price, who came to Kentucky from Virginia prior to 1800, and John Davis, led in the organization of the church. The pioneer preacher, William Hickman, gives an account of the origin of the New Liberty Church. He says: "In those days I went down and visited my friends on Eagle Creek, and baptized a number there. Soon after that, a large and respectable church arose there, and Brother John Scott moved among them, and has long been their pastor." Elder Scott continued as pastor about twenty-five years, and left the church with 213 members. Elders Cornelius Duval, B. F. Kenney and Hugh Montgomery served as pastor in succession until 1838, when Elder Lewis D. Alexander became pastor and continued until his death in 1863, a period of twenty-five years. During his long pastorate 746 converts were baptized. Since that period, it has often changed pastors, and has not prospered as formerly.3

      The New Liberty Church entered into the organization of the Concord Association, September, 1821, and remained a member until 1924, when the Owen County Association was formed. At that time there were 210 members and Rev. R. E. Brown, pastor. At the 140th anniversary in 1941, the church numbered 279 members, and Dr. E. F. Wright was pastor. In 1948, it reported to the Owen County Association, 262 members, 191 enrolled in Sunday school and Rev. C. E. Butler, pastor full time.


      This church, located in Henderson County, was constituted of fifty members in 1803, and the following year united with the Cumberland Association, which was composed of churches in Kentucky and Tennessee. When this Association divided in 1806, and the Red River Association was formed in 1807, the Grave Creek Church became a member, and in 1808 it erected the first Baptist meeting house in Henderson County. Some of the early pastors were Elder William Boulin, John Welden, Job Dobbs, John Davis and William Hatchett, but the dates of service are not known.

      At the Centennial held in 1903, a history of the church was written by Elder T. A. Conway, in which he portrayed some of the difficulties through which the church passed during the century of its existence. In 1831, the members were divided over the teachings of Alexander Campbell, and those who adhered to the Articles of Faith, adopted by the church at its organization, withdrew and continued as the regular Baptist church; while the rest became identified with the Campbell movement. In 1820, the Highland Association was constituted of thirteen churches scattered over a large territory, seven of which had originally been members of the Red River Association.

Grave Creek Church became a member of this body. In 1835, a resolution was adopted in the Highland Association advising the churches which supported "the missionary scheme" to be excluded from the fellowship with the body. The Grave Creek and three other churches withdrew, and formed the Little Bethel Association the following year. In 1868 the church went into the Henderson County Association, and united with the Ohio Valley in 1888.

      This old church seemed to have declined, following the centennial in 1903. The report to the Ohio Valley Association in 1937, showed 48 members. It made no report in 1938, and in 1939 it disappeared from the records permanently.4


      The Ten Mile Church, located in Gallatin County, was constituted about 1804 and received into the North Bend Association in 1806, but in 1831 it united with the Ten Mile Association, formed October 7 in the meeting house of this same church. The first pastor was William Bled-soe who served one year. Elder David Lillard was the third pastor, and he continued in that relation forty-two years. He was an early settler and united with the Ten Mile Church, where he was ordained to the ministry and immediately became pastor. The church grew under his long ministry to around four hundred members. Elder Lillard led in the organization of the Ten Mile Association and was the first Moderator and served in that honored position until his death in 1861.

      The Ten Mile Church reported 381 members in 1856, but after dismissing many members to form other churches, only 126 members were reported in 1882. In 1932, after fifty years, the church numbered 171 members, but in 1948, twelve years later, reported to the Ten Mile Association, 278 members, 138 enrolled in Sunday school, full time preaching and Rev. William Smith, pastor.5


      The Cumberland Baptist Church, later the First Baptist Church, Barbourville, was constituted, March 12, 1804, by Elder William Jones and Elder Matthews, two ministers from Tennessee. The original members who went into the organization were Elijah Foley, Isaac Martin, Lemuel Hibbard, James Parker, Sarah Bailey, Martha and Elizabeth Barbour. In August following the organization, Elijah Foley was elected pastor and conducted the services in the homes of the members. At a business session of the church held on the first Saturday in March, 1814, Samuel Jammerson and Peter Engle were appointed trustees and were authorized to superintend the building of the first meeting house, which was erected on a level elevation about five miles southeast of the court house in Barbourville on the north, side of the Cumberland River.

      The second church building was a log structure erected in Barbourville in 1833, and it was used for both church and school. The third meeting house was a frame building, erected at the corner of Main and Pine Streets and was dedicated June 18, 1893. The present brick house at the corner of Main and High Streets was built in 1922, and an additional story was added in 1941. At the business meeting of the church on the first Saturday in October, 1813, a petition was presented by William Hooper and Thomas Arthur,

Sr., to form the "arm" of the church at the Concord meeting house, Flat Lick asking that the "arm", which had been formed there, be established as a separate church. On the following Saturday, Elders Elijah Foley, Moses Foley, Sr., Joseph Stephens, Andrew Evans, Thomas Prichard and Peter Engle complied with the request and duly constituted the Concord Baptist Church. This was the first "arm" of the church at Barbourville to become a separate organization; and accordingly on the first Saturday in November, 1813, seventy-five members were granted letters to unite with the Concord Church, which has had a continued active existence of 135 years. In 1948, this church reported to the Concord Association 190 members, full time preaching and Rev. G. R. Williams, pastor.

      The Barbourville Church, under the name Cumberland, went into the organization of the Stocktons Valley Association in 1806 and probably remained a member of that body until the South Union Association was organized, September, 1815. When the North Concord Association was formed in 1843, the Barbourville and Concord Churches united with that body and they are still members (1948).

      Thirty pastors have served the Barbourville church during its 145 years of existence. Elijah Foley was the first pastor, who preached a short time in Virginia, before coming to Kentucky. Moses Foley, Sr., the father of Elijah, was the second pastor, who came to Kentucky from Virginia in 1815, and settled in Knox County, on the Cumberland River, about four miles from Barbourville. Blackgrove Hopper was the third pastor. He came from active pastoral work in Holston Association in Virginia to Kentucky about 1813, and became active in laying the foundation of Baptist churches in Knox and adjoining counties.

      The length of service of many of the thirty pastors of the Barbourville Church appear to have been short. The longest pastorate in the history of the church was that of Dr. H. C. Chiles, who served from 1934 to 1947, when he resigned to accept the pastoral care of the First Baptist Church, Murray, Kentucky. Over 800 members were added to the church during his pastorate, and the budget increased from $3,306.33 to $21,789.81. The church reported to the North Concord Association in 1948, 1212 members and Rev. Fred Tarpley, pastor.6

      The outstanding achievement of the Barbourville Baptist Church was the founding of the Barbourville College in 1899. We are indebted to the records of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky for the account of the founding and the work of this school. "The school was founded by the Baptist church at Barbourville in behalf of the Baptist cause." In 1900 the following record appears: "This is a new institution, incorporated as a stock company on the 1st of last February. The school opened, however, in a rented building on January 1st, with Rev. L. R. Baker as principal. A lot has been bought, and it is hoped a building will be ready by October 1st. There were 170 pupils, of both sexes, and 4 teachers. It is proposed to put the school under the direction of the neighboring district associations."

      The report on Education to the General Association, June 16, 1901 states: The Barbourville College has "been hampered by lack of a building,

101 but a good lot has been secured, and a brick building will soon be erected." In June, 1902 the report says: "A good beginning has been made at Barbourville. Principal W. L. Brock has closed a good year. He has had 150 pupils. There are six teachers. The campus contains four acres, and with a brick building is valued at $10,000. The Institute is controlled by a Board of Trustees, all of whom must be Baptists, and who are chosen by the contributors. It is under the patronage of the North Concord Association."

      In June, 1903 the report says: "The Baptists of Barboursville have done well in planting this Institute. The campus and the brick building are valued at $10,000, and these have been furnished by our brethern there." In June, 1908, the report gives the following: "John Parker, President, has an attendance of 225, its income from tuition amounting to $2,000.00. There are seven teachers; no endowment."

      The property was deeded to the Home Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. "The purpose of the school is to prepare students for college, and teach the Bible to all grades, but the work has been greatly hindered by lack of boarding accommodations for its pupils." In the report of June, 1909, the following appears: "The Barbourville Baptist Institute under President J. B. Arvin, has an enrollment of 219, of which 91 are males and 128 females, and one ministerial student. The school has 7 Professors and teachers, and 9 Trustees. Barbourville needs a boys dormitory and help to pay off its debts."

      No further reports of the Institute were made to the General Association or to the Baptist Education Society, of Kentucky, since the property had been deeded to the Home Mission Board. J. L. Creech was President of the school 1910-11, and again 1911-13. H. E. Nelson was in charge, when the Institute closed in 1935.7


      The Providence Baptist Church, located in Warren County was constituted on the last Saturday in September, 1804, with nine members, which increased to twenty-six in 1812. Jesse Boyce was appointed the first deacon, but after serving for eight years, he was dismissed from the office because his wife was not a member of the church. Elder John Martin was called as the first pastor with the understanding that he was to have no salary, except what might be given him as a free will offering. He continued as pastor until 1808, when he was deprived of his pastorate, because he was in fellowship with a disorderly church, but the church recalled him in 1813. In 1812 Elder Martin baptized Joseph Taylor, who became a Baptist preacher and was pastor of the church. He was the father of Alfred Taylor, who became such a power in the ministry in the years to come.

      The Providence Church united with the Cumberland Association in 1805, but it joined the Red River Association when it was formed out of the Cumberland in 1807; and the church became a member of the Green River Association in 1809.

      The Gasper River Association was organized September 26, 1812, in the meeting house of the Providence Church, which became a member of that

body. The Clear Fork Association was also organized in the Providence Church in 1860. Providence became a member of that body and remained until the Warren Association was constituted in 1890. In 1818, Elder Keel, the pastor of the Providence Church was dismissed by letter to go into the organization of a Baptist Church in Bowling Green. At a church meeting September 26, 1821, quite a discussion prevailed whether to wash the saints' feet, but the majority vote was against introducing the practice. During the pastorate of J. M. Pendleton in 1853 sixty members were received, and under his leadership a second house of worship was erected, and Dr. J. R. Graves, editor of the Tennessee Baptist, preached the dedicatory sermon.

      Elder W. C. Taylor, the son of Alfred Taylor, and grandson of Joseph Taylor, was pastor about ten years and D. L. Mansfield was pastor twenty-one years. The church experienced years of disturbance growing largely out of severe discipline. In 1815, John Neay was excluded from the church for becoming a member of a Masonic fraternity. In 1820, two of the brethren fell out over a money deal. One borrowed silver money from the other and paid it back in paper money. This matter was in the church four years. Both were excluded, and then restored. Later, one was excluded the second time, and the other, dismissed by letter. A strange incident occurred in the church in 1840. Alfred Taylor conducted a two weeks' meeting, which proved a failure. He closed the meeting, and went to his horse to ride away. The members prevailed on him to remain for the night service, and make one more trial. The result was a great revival and forty-nine converts were received for baptism.

      The Centennial Anniversary of the Providence Church was held, September, 1904 and was a great occasion. Addresses were made on Saturday by Dr. W. P. Harvey of Louisville, and Dr. J. S. Dill, pastor at Bowling Green. On Sunday the sermon was preached by H. Boyce Taylor, pastor at Murray, Kentucky, who was the fourth generation of the Taylors to preach in that church. The history of the church for the century was read, and it was published in the minutes of the Warren Association (1907). In 1948, the church in its 144th year reported 160 members, half time preaching and Rev. L. A. Stewart, pastor.8


      The Sandy Creek Baptist Church, located in Butler County, eight miles south of Morgantown, was constituted on June 15, 1805, with forty members, thirty-seven whites, and three blacks. Elder Benjamin Talbot was the first pastor, and continued until his death in 1834, a period of twenty-nine years. A log meeting house was erected, and the church began to prosper. In January, 1835, Elder Alfred Taylor was called to succeed the lamented Ben Talbot, and served two years. Elder William Childress was the next pastor and served ten years, 1837 to 1847. In 1840, while Elder Childress was still pastor, the second log meeting house was built.

      Elder Alfred Taylor was pastor the second time for two years, followed by a short pastorate of Elder J. S. Coleman, who was just entering the ministry. About 1850, while Elder J. H. Felts was pastor the first Sunday school was organized. In 1880, during the pastorate of Elder J. H. Newman,

the third house of worship was erected, not far from the first "old log house" built by Brother Ben Talbot. The third house was a frame building and has met the needs of the church 69 years, but was being replaced by a more com-modious frame building in early 1949.

      The Centennial of the Sandy Creek Church was held in June, 1905, when Elder James P. Taylor, the son of Alfred Taylor, was pastor. A history of the church was read and published with the title "A Brief History of the Sandy Creek Church for One Hundred Years" and signed by James P. Taylor, Dunbar, Kentucky. This, the first Baptist church in Butler County, has dismissed members to form the following churches: Bethel Church, in 1848, still (1949) worshipping in a large log meeting house erected in 1872; Union Church, constituted in 1860; Richland, in 1861; and Big Muddy, in 1875. The Sandy Creek Church entertained the third annual session of the Gasper River Association in 1814, and reported to that same body in 1948, 263 members and Rev. H. E. White, pastor.9


      The Salem Church in Livingston County was constituted on June 22, 1805, in the home of Matthew Sellers with sixty members, gathered from the country forty miles around, most of whom brought their letters from Virginia and North Carolina. The names of the original members, as appear on the old record, show fifty-three white members, and seven black. Elders Daniel Brown, Abel Teague and William Buckley composed the presbytery in the organization of the church. In 1808 messengers were sent to the Red River Association, constituted the year before, requesting admission into that body. The messengers presented one special doctrine, as follows: "We believe in the doctrine of particular election of grace; we believe that God's elect ones shall be called, converted, regenerated, and sanctified by God's Holy Spirit." In 1813, the Salem Church went into the organization of the Little River Association, and remained a member until the Ohio River Association was formed on October 13, 1883.

      Elder Daniel Brown, a native of South Carolina, was the first pastor of the Salem Church, and held services in the homes of the members for three years, before the first meeting house was erected. In June, 1806, the church "appointed the Lord's supper to be observed at the house of Frederick Fulkerson in August beginning on Friday before as a fast day." Another record says: "The church agrees to meet at Brother Seller's home, the second Sunday and Saturday in each month as monthly meetings, and at Brother Fulkerson's, the fourth Sunday and Saturday, as their branch church meeting."

      In 1808 a log meeting house was built on the land of Mr. William Champion, near the waters of Sandy Creek. This rude old log house served every purpose until 1822, when the increased congregation required a larger and better house. Accordingly a new house was built on Mr. Drury Champion's land about three-fourth of a mile from the site of the log house. This new building was of wood, constructed of studding split out of trees, and the weatherboarding was long clapboard, as they were split out. In

1827, the church decided "to build a shed running the whole length of the house in order to accommodate the large crowds that gathered from miles around to hear the word of God proclaimed." This house was in use at the Centennial of the church, held in 1905.

      The controversy over missions and anti-missions continued in the Salem Church and Little River Association for a decade. The trouble started in the Salem membership, when one J. H. Farmer, the clerk, secured the adoption of the following resolution: "That this church renounce all fellowship for missionary churches, and we will have nothing to do with them in any respect, and if any member of this church shall approve of that caste, he or she or they are to have a letter of dismission, the letter stating the reason for which they were dismissed." Through the courageous leadership of Elder William Champion, who had been brought up in the Salem Church, and later pastor, the anti-mission forces were finally eliminated, when peace and harmony again prevailed.

      Elder Abel Teague was the second pastor of the church. He served only a few years, preaching the introductory sermon of the Little River Association in 1837. Elder William Buckley, the third pastor, 1823-1825, was described as a "man of experience" and "good preaching ability." Elder James W. Mansfield, the fourth pastor, began his pastorate in 1825 and continued twelve years. Elder William Champion, to whom reference has been made, began his work as pastor in 1837, and continued until 1875, a period of thirty-six years. Eight ministers served as pastor from 1875 to the Centennial year 1905, and beyond. W. H. Utley was pastor 1875-1878; Bennett Barnes, 1878-1881; J. S. Miller, 1881-1882; J. E. Roland, 1883-1885; W. R. Gibbs, 1885-1888; Collin Hodge, 1889-1890; E. B. Blackburn, one year; J. J. Franks, 1892-1896; 1897-1900; and U. G. Hughes, 1902-1912. C. R. Barnes was pastor 1912-1914.

      A number of churches have gone out from the membership of old Salem. The Union Church went out in 1810; Deer Creek, 1820; Crooked Creek, 1835; Friendship, 1841; Good Hope, in 1842; Dunn Springs, later called Shady Grove, 1844; Caldwell Springs, 1844; Dyers Hill, 1846; and a considerable portion of Pinckneyville, 1852. Due to continued loss of members, in forming the above named churches, the membership was never very large. In 1927, the church reported 105 members, and in 1947, 132 members. The church reported to the Ohio River Association in 1948, 137 members, half time preaching and Rev. Orman Stegall, pastor.10


      The Goshen Baptist Church, in Breckenridge County, was constituted of eleven members, November 23, 1808, by three pioneer preachers, Warren Cash, Walter Stallard and Alexander McDougal. The church united with the Salem Association after the organization, and in 1817 went into the organization of the Goshen Association, which took the name of this church. In 1902, the church joined in the formation of the Breckenridge County Association.

      Elder J. H. L. Moorman, one of the leading preachers in Goshen

Association in his day, was the first pastor of the Goshen Church. He was followed in succession by Elder Christopher Wilson, Samuel Anderson and Simeon Buchanan. Elder D. Dowden, moved from Leitchfield, where he was pastor, to Breckenridge County, and became pastor of Goshen and other churches, serving until about 1879, when he was succeeded by the distinguished preacher, S. L. Helm, in his old age. Helm continued pastor until his death, October 26, 1885. There are no records of the Centennial of the church being held in 1908. In 1927, there were 154 members and half time preaching, and in 1948, one hundred members, full time preaching and Rev. Robert Harris, Louisville, Kentucky, pastor.11


      The First Baptist Church at Georgetown was constituted of twelve members - eight men and four women - in 1810 at the Scott County Court House, which was erected between 1792 and 1796 at a cost of $1600. Elder George Biggs, who led in the organization of the church, was the first pastor and served four years. Elder Theodorick Buleware, was the second pastor, 1814-1818. The church services were held in the court house until 1815, when the first "meeting house" was built according to the following account which appeared in "The Telegraph" of Georgetown, February 9, 1912: "At a meeting of the commissioners in Georgetown for the purpose of carrying into effect the building of a meeting house in said town, upon examining the amount of subscription papers, find that upwards of $1,000.00 is already subscribed. All good citizens who feel interested in the accomplishment of this laudable undertaking are called on for their assistance." This house was completed in 1815 according to the above effort, and was a brick structure, located in the northwest part of town near the Big Spring Branch,

      During the pastorate of Elder W. C. Buck, 1827-29, the first Sunday school was organized. While Dr. George C. Sedwick was pastor, a new house of worship was erected on the corner of College and South Hampton Streets, and dedicated, June 23, 1842. This building had a high steeple, and one large room, which served for preaching and Sunday school. The old meeting house left vacant was occupied by the colored Baptists. Dr. Duncan R. Campbell was pastor from 1846 to 1850, and was elected President of Georgetown College in 1852 and served until 1856. Dr. James L. Reynolds was elected President of Georgetown College in 1849, and continued until 1851, when he was pastor of the Georgetown Church, 1850-1853. Dr. J. M. Frost, Sr., was pastor, 1852-1853; Elder A. W. LaRue, 1853-1857, and Elder Thomas J. Stevenson, who became pastor at twenty-one years of age, and served through the Civil War period, 1859-1865.

      Following the war, Dr. Henry McDonald was pastor, 1869-1877; and Dr. R. M. Dudley, 1877-1879, and President of Georgetown College, 1872-1892. Under the leadership of Dr. Z. T. Cody, who was pastor, 1887-1901, the present church building was erected at a cost of $20,000, and the first service was held in a large Sunday school room, January 22, 1892. Dr. E. B. Pollard followed Dr. Cody, and the next pastor was Dr. F. W. Eberhardt, who was succeeded by Dr. W. W. Stout. In 1905, a home was built for the pastor at a cost of $5,000; and in 1909-10, the church building was

remodeled, and enlarged, including the adding of Sunday school rooms. Rev. Arthur House Stainback was pastor in 1945, and was succeeded by Dr. E. L. Skiles in 1946, who is the present pastor (1949). The church at Georgetown reported to the Elkhorn Association in 1948, 1298 members, 1153 enrolled in Sunday school and $11,894.00 contributed to missions, education and benevolent objects.12


      The Highland, the first and oldest Baptist church in Union County, was constituted in the house of Brother Henry Morris, near Highland Creek, March 17, 1312 of eight members as follows: Henry Morris, Jane Morris, Sarah Wade, James Davis, John Buck, Aquilla Davis, Frances Berry, and Mary Berry. Elder John Bourland, together with help from other Baptist churches, assisted in the organization. Having no house of worship, the congregation met regularly for six years in the private homes of the members for services. Later an old log meeting house was erected, with which "a great deal of tradition was connected." During the pastorate of Elder John Gratham, the Highland Church became a member of the Little River Association in 1814.

      In November, 1820, the well known and distinguished pioneer preacher, W. C. Buck was called as pastor and during that same year, the Highland Church assisted in organizing the Little Bethel Church in Union County. At the beginning of Elder Buck's pastorate, the Highland Association was constituted. This beloved pastor continued work with the Highland and other churches in Union County until 1835, when he moved to Louisville to succeed the lamented John S. Wilson as pastor of the First Baptist Church in that city. In March, 1824, the Highland Church assisted in organizing a church in Morganfield, in Union County. Elder William Thomp-son was the next pastor. He entered upon his duties in August, 1835. In August, 1843, the Highland Church instructed her messengers to the Highland Association to "oppose all benevolent institutions as a bar to fellowship." This action resulted in a division in the ehureh on the subject of missions. Both parties claimed to be the Highland Baptist Church, and both factions continued to hold the regular services in the same building until 1846, when the anti-mission faction, which had been excluded, left the field and went out of existence. The excluded faction, however, took away the records.

      In March, 1848, letters were granted to members to constitute the Uniontown Baptist Church. The Highland Church has twice had the privilege of entertaining the Ohio Valley Association. During the Centennial year 1912, the church contributed to all purposes $448,75 including the pastor's salary.

      In April, 1920, Rev. D. F. Shacklette accepted the pastorate and served faithfully until his death in April, 1932. During this time the church began to decline. A number of the older members died, and others moved away, while many of the younger members "got caught in the whirlpool of the Catholic immorality and were swept into the world." Hence the old church went out of existence, the property was sold and the proceeds were used in the upkeep of the cemetery.13



      Buck Creek, the oldest Baptist church in McLean County, was first an "arm" of the church at Beaver Dam, and was constituted into a church of eleven members, August, 1812, under the name of the church at Tanner's Meeting House, which was changed to Buck Creek Baptist Church, June 5, 1841. All the records of the first twelve years of the church's history were destroyed in the burning down of the home of the clerk, Frederick Tanner. The Centennial historian says: "During the first forty years of the church's history little is said of the pastor and his work. For years there was no reference to preaching except an occasional note that some preacher was invited to preach on certain Sundays."

      Elder Job Hobbs was probably the first pastor, and no doubt served but a short time, when he was succeeded by "the famous pioneer. Elder Benjamin Talbot." The church became a member of the Gasper River Association in 1813, and reported fifty members; but later united with the Goshen Association. In November, 1844, the Buck Creek and eight other churches entered into the formation of Daviess County Association. Elder George Render, who was licensed and ordained by the Buck Creek Church was the next pastor, and was succeeded by Elder Thomas Downs, the hard working farming preacher, who served as pastor a number of years, prior to 1840. Under the leadership of the next pastor, Elder K. G. Hay, the church: began to make provision for pastoral support, with a definite amount. J. S. Coleman succeeded Elder Hay in 1855, and continued until 1869, and was again pastor, 1873-1878, and again, 1884-1887, making about twenty-one years of service. J. M. Peay was pastor, 1870-72; B. F. Swindler, 1878-1884; B. F. Jenkins, 1886-1891; W. P. Bennett, 1891-93; D. J. K. Maddox, 1893-96; T. M. Morton, 1896-1902, again, 1903-1906; and J. J. Clore, 1902-03.

      The first meeting house was built of logs, located three miles west of Livia, on the Glenville road, and was known as the Tanner's Meeting House. In 1840 to 1841, the church built a log house on Buck Creek Hill, a point one mile west of Nuckols. In 1856-57, they built a frame house on the same lot, which was fully paid for in 1860. In 1892, the church determined to build a new and better house, but there was a difference of opinion as to the best location for the proposed building. Some of the members desired to build on a lot adjoining the old location, but sufficient funds could not be secured to build on that lot. Finally in 1894, the church proceeded to build on a lot located about half way between Livia and Nuckols on the Owensboro and Livermore road. The building was completed and occupied July, 1894, but many of the members opposed the new location and the church divided. Letters of dismission were granted to those dissatisfied members, who formed themselves into the Old Buck Creek Church.

      The Buck Creek Church has been "a prolific mother of churches." Members were dismissed during the century to form the following churches: In 1820, the Green Briar Church was constituted; in 1840, Mt. Liberty; in 1846, Brushy Fork; in 1854, Oak Grove (Utica); in 1865, Glenville; in 1879, Woodward Valley; in 1885, Livermore; and in 1894, Old Buck Creek. Scores of churches between the Green River and the Ohio have been organized from the above named daughters of the historic Buck Creek Church.

      Rev. John A. Bennett was pastor of this old church from 1906 to 1924, and reached the climax of his pastorate in the observance of the Centennial, August, 1912. In 1926, the church numbered 162 members, and Rev. Albert Maddox was pastor. In 1935, Rev. S. T. Skaggs was pastor, and the church reported 187 members. In 1945, Rev. Arthur Holland was pastor and 200 members; while in 1948, the church reported to the Daviess-McLean Association 202 members, and Rev. Lester Wright, pastor.14


      The New Union Church, formerly known as Union, located on the Russellville and Hopkinsville road in Logan County, was constituted October 5, 1813, of eleven members, "by a Presbytery composed of Elders Lewis Faulkner, Samuel Basham, and Leonard Page." Elder Leonard Page was the first pastor, who came from Goochland County, Virginia, and settled in the community. The first meeting house was built of logs, which was replaced by a brick building located about a mile from the old site. The membership of the church rapidly increased by letters, but the members were scattered over a large territory. Several new churches were constituted with members dismissed from this, the first church constituted in that section of Logan County.

      On December 2, 1815, a colony of members was dismissed to constitute the Mt. Gilead Church, in the village of Allensville, Todd County, where the Bethel Association was organized ten years later. In November, 1818, ten members were dismissed by letter to constitute a church at Russellville, the County seat of Logan County. In April, 1819, twelve were dismissed by letter to organize the Pleasant Grove Church, later known as Spring Valley. In December, 1850, twelve members were dismissed by letter to form the Dripping Spring Church; and in 1853 a colony was sent out to constitute the Green Ridge Church, in north Logan County.

      Elder Leonard Page continued as pastor of the Union Church until 1831, when he joined the Alexander Campbell movement and was excluded for heresy. William Warder was the second pastor, and was succeeded by L. H. Millikin in 1836. H. B. Wiggins became pastor in 1842; James Lamb, 1846; W. D. Pannel, 1855; L. J. Crutcher, 1858; and John J. Felts, 1863. After the Civil War, the old brick meeting house was left to the colored Baptists, and a substantial building was erected on the Russellville-Elkton highway, and that house is still occupied for worship (1949).

      After the war, the following pastors served the church in succession. E. N. Dicken, 1868; W. M. Jordan, 1870; S. P. Forgy, 1873; John G. Kendall, 1876; G. F. Bagby, 1879; T. W. Bibb, 1882; P. H. Lockett, 1884; Charles P. Shields, 1886; J. B. Shelton, 1888; and A. C. Dorris, 1889. From 1890 to 1933, many of the pastors were ministerial students in Bethel College. The membership of the church has never been large. In 1929 there were 172 members, but in 1949, after twenty years, 184 members.

      Nine ministers have been ordained by the Union Church, one of whom was C. P. Shields, the first graduate of Bethel College (1857), and a member of the faculty of the old college for a number of years. Mrs. S. Y. Trimble, a daughter of Hon. James T. Morehead, went out from this church with her

husband, Elder S. Y. Trimble, as missionaries to Africa in 1856. Mrs. Trimble was a grandmother of Miss Mary Nelle Lyne of Logan County, who went out as a missionary to China in 1917. In 1948, the church reported 184 Members to the Bethel Association and Rev. J. B. Jackson, Jr., pastor.15


      The Walton's Creek Baptist Church, in Ohio County, was constituted July 9, 1814, composed of thirty-eight members dismissed from the church at Beaver Dam. The church was organized with the assistance of Elders Benjamin Talbot, Joseph Taylor, and George Render, and united with the Gasper River Association the following year. The church remained in that body until 1897, when the Daviess-McLean Association was constituted, and in 1901 became a constituent member of the Ohio County Association. Eighteen different ministers have served this church during the first century of its history. Elder Benjamin Talbot was the first pastor, and served eighteen years. Elder David J. Kelley, the second pastor, served three years, when he was succeeded in May, 1836 by Elder Alfred Taylor, served as pastor at four different times, 1836-1842; 1845-47; 1849-1857; and 1860-63. This noted preacher held the first protracted meeting in Ohio County in 1837, which resulted in 146 converts baptized, and of this number over 80 came for baptism in one day's service.

      Elder Judson S. Taylor succeeded his father as pastor, July, 1863, and continued until February, 1869. Elder W. P. Bennett and L. C. Tichenor conducted a meeting in the church, January, 1846, in which 95 members were received by baptism. Elder J. F. Austin was pastor of the church, 1869-1871; Elder W. P. Bennett, 1871-1881; Elder J. T. Casebier, 1881-1889; Elder J. A. Bennett, 1889-1892; Elder D. J. K. Maddox, 1892-3; Elder Hiram Brown, 1893-1901; Elder E. W. Coakley, 1901-02 and Elder L. P. Drake, 1902-1906.

      The first meeting house was built of logs soon after the church was organized. In 1827, this house was sold, and a new log house, 24 by 30 feet, was erected on the same lot. In 1887-89, the log house was taken down, and a frame building was erected, which was in use at the Centennial of the church in 1914. This church, being one of the oldest in Ohio County, was the mother of several churches. In July, 1838, twenty-nine members were granted letters to constitute the New Hope Church in Muhlenburg County; and in December, 1856, forty-nine members were dismissed to organize the church at West Point. In September, 1896, fifty-eight members were given letters to form the Central Grove Church. During the pastorate, of Elder O. M. Shultz, August, 1906, to April, 1909, thirty-one members were granted letters of dismission to constitute the Centertown Church, and a mission Sunday school was established at Rough River School House. At this time there was a marked improvement in the spiritual and business life of the church.

      Elder Clay O. Bennett was pastor, 1909-1912; Elder E. B. English, 1912-13; and Elder J. A. Bennett was pastor in 1914, and wrote the history of the church for the Centennial celebration, July 9, 1914. There are very meagre records of the church since that date. In 1925, the church reported to the Ohio County Association, 196 members, and Rev. J. A. Bennett, pastor; in 1935, 186 members, and Rev. J. H. Boswell, pastor; and in 1948, 200 members, and Rev. Frank C. Riley, pastor.16



      The Walnut Street Baptist Church, Louisville, Kentucky, traces its origin to 1815, when in that year, the First Baptist Church of Louisville was constituted by Elder Hinson Hobbs with fourteen members in the house of Mark Lampton, near where the Marine Hospital then stood, Preston and Chestnut Streets at present. The Minutes of the Long Run Association, September, 1815, says: "A church from Louisville applied for admission and was received." The church reported at that time twenty-two members, thirty-one members in 1816; fifty-one in 1819, and seventy-two in 1820.

      Elder Hinson Hobbs was the first pastor, and was succeeded by Elder Philip S. Fall, who served four years, in which the church grew to 107 members. Elder Fall, became a leader of the movement, headed by Alexander Campbell. During the next five years the pulpit was supplied by Benjamin Allen and John B. Curl, under whose labors the membership increased to 294. In 1831, both of these ministers adopted the views of Alexander Campbell, and took half of the members with them. No report was made to the Long Run Association that year. Under these conditions George Waller, a well known preacher, became pastor, and he continued until 1834, when he was succeeded by J. S. Wilson, pastor at Elkton, Todd County, who was pastor until his death, August 28, 1835. The church had grown to 306 members. The records state that in 1836 "a man of princely presence, W. C. Buck, who had been an officer in the War of 1812, became pastor, and remained until 1840. In 1841, as a result of a great revival, the membership was increased to 697. In 1842, 559 colored members were dismissed to form the First Colored Baptist Church of Louisville, leaving only 279 members in the First Church.

      In 1838, during the pastorate of Elder W. C. Buck nineteen members withdrew from the First Baptist Church to organize the Second Baptist Church under the pastoral care of Elder Reuben Marcey, who served one year and was succeeded by Elder F. A. Willard. In 1840 the church reported only forty-two members, but in 1842 under the pastorate of Elder Thomas S. Malcom, 96 members were reported. In March 1847, Dr. T. G. Keen, a very distinguished minister became pastor and remained two years. In 1848, the church reported to the Long Run Association that "Elder H. Goodale has been dismissed and set apart as a missionary to China."

      On January 1, 1842, the East Baptist Church, in Louisville, was organized with three males and seven females from the First Church. The records reveal that "They occupy a comfortable brick house on Green Street between Logan and Preston, capable of great enlargement, and situated in what has been heretofore a very destitute part of the city." This church was organized by Dr. W. C. Buck, who was the first pastor, and who led in the construction of the building. Dr. A. D. Sears became pastor of the First Baptist Church in 1843, and was the last pastor. The report showed that the church had, at that time, a Female Missionary Society, which contributed $153.50 to the American Indian Mission Association.

      In 1849, both the First and Second Churches of Louisville were pastorless; but both churches desired the services of "a rarely gifted" young man,

Elder Thomas Smith, Jr. He visited both, and was unanimously called by each church. The History of the Walnut Street Church says: "The First Baptist Church occupied a house jointly with the Free Masons at Fifth and Green (now Liberty) Streets; while the Second Church was just abandoning the old place on the north side of Green Street, between First and Second, and was building on the corner of Third and Guthrie." Elder Thomas Smith, Jr., who had accepted the call to both churches, led in their union in one body.

      On October 12, 1849, the members of the two churches met in a joint meeting in the house of worship of the First Church, and adopted the following resolution: "Resolved, By the First and Second Baptist Churches of the City of Louisville, Kentucky, now in session, that the churches do now unite together and form one church, and that the entire list of members now in full fellowship in both churches, be considered members of the church so formed. And from and after the adoption of this resolution, the First and Second Baptist Churches of Louisville cease to exist as separate organizations."

      The newly formed church purchased from Rev. E. P. Humphrey, 99 by 164 feet of ground on the northwest corner of Fourth and Walnut Streets, and the church took the name of Walnut Street Baptist Church. Under the leadership of their young pastor, Elder Thomas Smith, they began to erect a house of worship, which "was the wonder and pride of the city." The Historian says: "Nothing to compare with it had been known in Kentucky." Dr. W. B. Caldwell, a prominent leader in the building enterprise said: "When the building was begun, the aggregate wealth of the members of the church did not equal the amount that was finally expended on the buildings."

      On March 6, 1851, the young pastor, Elder Thomas Smith, died. A tablet was placed on the wall of the church with the inscription "A good minister of Jesus Christ." While the members mourned their loss, they were faced with the important task of securing a pastor capable of leading in the great building program. Finally on November 21, 1852, Dr. W. W. Everts, "a man of excellent gifts and scholarly attainments" was called "on a salary of $1500 and $100 to bring him." He accepted the call, and began his labors January 23, 1853. The church grew under his ministry "in numbers, wealth and power." Twenty feet were added to the church building under construction running back to the alley. The new building, was finished and dedicated, January 22, 1854. The pastor preached at 11 A. M. on the dedication day, Rev. John Finley at 3 P. M. and Dr. William Vaughan at night. The records state that: "A large concourse of people was assembled at each service, and the hearts of the members were softened with gratitude for the great blessing conferred on them by the Great Head of the church. It will be truly a memorable day in the history of this church."

      In 1854, the Walnut Street Church sent out members to form the Portland Avenue, and Chestnut Street Churches. On November 11, 1855, during a revival at the Walnut Street Church, Mrs. Everts, the pastor's wife, and other ladies were distributing tracts and giving invitations to individuals to attend the meeting. They visited a boarding house and gave tracts and

invitations to some young actors. Two of the young actors were impressed and came to the meetings, abandoned their theatrical profession and united with the church, one of whom was George C. Lorimer, who became a mighty power among Baptists of America.

      In 1857 the Southern Baptist Convention met in Kentucky the first time, and the sessions were held in the Walnut Street Baptist Church. It was then and there, that a young man, Dr. James P. Boyce, offered a proposition to raise $100,000 in South Carolina to establish a Theological Seminary at Greenville, in that State, provided the sum of $100,000 could be raised elsewhere. The proposition was accepted, and action was taken by' the Convention to carry it out.

      On July 10, 1859, Dr. Everts resigned his pastorate at Walnut Street to become pastor of the First Baptist Church, Chicago. In September, I860, the church reported 487 members, and "the finances in a deplorable condition." In October, 1861, Rev. George C. Lorimer, who had become a prominent minister, was invited to occupy the pulpit to January 1, 1862 at a salary of seventy-five dollars a month. He responded to the invitation, and on December 6, he received a call to become permanent pastor, which he accepted, and entered upon his duties in January, 1862. In February, 1863, the amount of $300 was added to the pastor's salary, making the amount $1500.

      Dr. Lorimer closed his pastoral relation with the church, April 1, 1868, to accept a call of the First Baptist Church, Albany, New York. Dr. A. T. Spalding, Mobile, Alabama, was called to succeed Dr. Lorimer and served until October, 1871, when the pulpit was supplied by Dr. W. M. Pratt, until Dr. M. B. Wharton, who was called January 23, 1872, entered upon his labors the following April.

      In 1869, a Baptist church was organized on Cable Street, which was later moved to Franklin Street and named accordingly. The Broadway Baptist Church was constituted, May 19, 1870, in the lecture room of the Walnut Street Baptist Church, and soon occupied a house of worship on Broadway. During the pastorate of J. L. Burrows, the Broadway building burned in December, 1875, and the pastor lost his valuable library, sermons and rare manuscripts. Dr. J. W. Warder became pastor of the Walnut Street Church, July, 1875 [?], and continued until July 4, 1880, when he resigned to accept the work of Secretary of State Missions in Kentucky.

      The church called Dr. T. T. Eaton to the pastorate, who entered upon his duties May 1, 1881. In 1888, the church numbered 1549 members, and contributed $34,040.00 to the various objects. At a business meeting, November, 1899, a resolution was adopted to sell the church property at Fourth and Walnut Streets for a consideration of $120,000 and move to a new location. The final services were conducted in the old building, April 1, 1900. The congregation moved to a building on the northwest corner of Second and College Streets, and there remained while a commodious house of worship was being built at Third and St. Catherine Streets "on a beautiful lot in the heart of the residential part of the city." The new building was first occupied March 9, 1902, and was completed and dedicated November 16, the same year. In 1901, the church numbered 1663 members with $41,154.62 contributed to all purposes.

      Dr. T. T. Eaton died suddenly with a heart attack on June 29, 1907, at Grand Junction, Tennessee as he was changing trains on the way from the General Association at Mayfield, Ky., to Blue Mountain, Miss. On October 2, following Dr. Eaton's death in June, Dr. Henry Alford Porter was called as his successor, and preached his first sermon on Sunday, November 17, 1907. Dr. Porter came to Walnut Street from the First Baptist Church, Oklahoma City, and remained five years and eight months, when he accepted a call to the Gaston Avenue Baptist Church, Dallas, Texas, and entered upon his duties January 1, 1913. Dr. H. L. Winburn, pastor at Arkadelplhia, Arkansas, was called to succeed Dr. Porter, and began his pastorate, January, 1914, and after four years, returned to the First Baptist Church, Arkadelphia.

      Dr. Finley F. Gibson was called to the Walnut Street Church, from the Grace Street Church, Richmond, Virginia, in 1919, and continued until 1941, a period of twenty-three years. At the beginning of Dr. Gibson's pastorate, the church numbered 1,116 members, and contributed $28,992.58 for all purposes; but in 1936, the report showed 3661 members, 2769 enrolled in Sunday school, and $57,126.28 contributed to all causes. In 1941, the membership had increased to 3924, the enrollment in the Sunday school to 3279, and $25,516.83 contributed to missions and benevolences.

      Dr. Kyle M. Yates, Professor of Old Testament Interpretation in Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, since 1926, was called to the pastorate of the Walnut Street Church, in early 1942, and continued until 1946, when he accepted the pastorate of the Second Baptist Church in Houston, Texas.

      Dr. William R. Pettigrew, after ten and one-half years as pastor of the Citadel Square Baptist Church, Charleston, South Carolina, began his pastorate with the Walnut Street Church, on September 1, 1946. Since that date, there have been a total of 1285 additions. The Sunday school averaged in attendance 1236 pupils for the first six months of 1946, but averaged 1688 for the same period in 1949. The church reported to the Long Run Association in 1948, 157 baptisms, a total of 4696 members, 3209 enrolled in the Sunday school, $118,788.00 for local current expenses, and $100,072,00 for all missions and benevolent causes. The physical equipment has been greatly expanded and beautified.17


      The Baptist church at Frankfort was constituted with thirteen members on February 25, 1816. According to the records, the church had its origin as follows: "At a meeting of a number of Baptists at the house of Simon Beckham in the town of Frankfort to consult on the propriety of establishing a church in this place, Brother S. M. Noel was requested to act as Moderator and J. Dudley, Clerk." The following resolutions were adopted: "Resolved that it is expedient to proceed without delay in suitable arrangements, preparatory to the constitution of a Baptist Church at Frankfort.

      "Resolved that Silas M. Noel, D. James, John W. Woolridge, Charles Buck and J. Dudley to be a Committee to prepare a constitution or Church

Covenant and submit the same to the next meeting for inspection.

      "Resolved, that we now adjourn to meet again at this place on the 28th of January 1816."

      At a meeting in the house of Simon Beckham, at the time appointed, the Committee appointed to prepare a constitution or Church Covenant reported, which, when read, was unanimously adopted. It was then agreed that Brethren John Taylor, S. M. Noel, Elijah Stapp, Charles Buck and J. Dudley be a committee to prepare Rules of Discipline and Decorum for the government of the contemplated church and present them at the next meeting. They agreed that Sunday the twenty-fifth day of February next be fixed for the constitution of a church in Frankfort, and that a friendly invitation be given to the churches at Big Spring, Mt. Pleasant, South Benson, Forks of Elkhorn and Great Crossings, informing them of their intentions, and soliciting their friendly aid on the occasion.

      At the time and place appointed, visiting brethren were invited to take seats, to aid with their counsel, and to act with all freedom. All members, who desired to go into the constitution of the church, were requested to present their letters. Accordingly, the following complied with the request and thus became charter members of the church: John Taylor, Benjamin Edrington, John Epperson, Elijah Stapp, Simon Beckham, J. Dudley, Elizabeth Taylor, Polly Hickman, Sally Cunningham, Patsy Ransdale, Betsy Laufbourrow, Sally Bacon, and Jane Daniel. The vote was unanimous "for us now to go into the constitution of a church." The Constitution or Church Covenant was read and unanimously adopted. The church then unanimously invited Brother John Taylor to exercise his privileges as a Gospel minister among us."

      The first regular business meeting after the organization of the church, February 25, 1816, was held on March 15, 1816." "In the State House" on April 27, 1816, Rev. John Taylor was called to act as pastor, and Brother S. M. Noel was invited to "attend with Brother Taylor," but later declined. The Lord's Supper was "to be observed on Sunday after the fourth Saturday in November 1816 at the residence of Sister Polly Hickman to commence at early candlelight," The first reference to finances occurred in the Minutes of the meeting on the fourth Saturday in December, 1816. It was agreed to raise fifty dollars from the members. A committee was appointed to "assess the same on the male members." This committee reported to a later meeting as follows: "Brother Beckham assessed $16.17; Brother Taylor $13.33; Brother Edrington, $6.17; Brother Woolridge, $10.66: Brother Dudley, $13.67."

      On February 22, 1817, Elder Henry Toler was called as the first regular pastor of the church. Up to this time the services were held in private houses, the court house and the state house. There was only one church house in Frankfort and on January 25, 1818, the trustees of the "House of Worship" tendered the use of said house to the Baptist church to accept on the fourth Saturday in each month. In January, 1821, Elders Jacob Creath and Philip S. Fall were called to preach to the church alternately. In 1824, Porter Clay, a brother of the Hon. Henry Clay, was ordained to the ministry and was pastor of the Frankfort Church, 1825-1829. Elder

Silas M. Noel, who preached the first sermon at the constitution of the church, served as pastor from 1823 to 1825.

      At the church meeting, April 16, 1827, a committee was appointed to raise funds to build a house of worship. The house was erected on Lewis Street, and the first service was held in it on the second Saturday in November, 1827. There are no records from 1831 to 1836. Elder George Blackburn was pastor in 1836. Elder Silas M. Noel was again pastor, and served two years. Elder George C. Sedwick began his pastorate, May, 1837, and closed October, 1838. He received a salary of $500 for the year's service. Elder J. M. Frost, Sr. was pastor from December 15, 1839, to March, 1841, during which time there was a division in the church. The party, known as Particular Baptists, sometimes called "Ironsides," withdrew from the church and held regularly their own meetings. They opposed all missions, and every form of benevolence. This group comprised some of the oldest members of the church, of whom most soon died, and in a few years the organization ceased to exist.

      During the next forty years, there are no records of the date, nor length of service of the pastors. Hence only the names of the pastors can be given, which are as follows: A. Goodeil, Brother Chadbourn, John W. Goodman, C. Lewis, L. W. Seeley, Joseph W. Warder, A. Broaddus, J. B. Thorpe, T. C. McKee, Green Clay Smith and J. M. Lewis. Elder George F. Bagby was the twenty-third pastor, and served from 1886 to November, 1890, at a salary of $1200 a year. Dr. M. B. Adams was pastor from January, 1898, to March, 1910. The church building was remodeled and improved in 1904, and the same year the first church bulletin was printed regularly. During the four year pastorate of Dr. F. W. Eberhardt, 1910-1914, a new pipe organ was installed and a mission church built on Wilkerson Street under the direction of W. S. Farmer. The pastor's salary was $2000 per annum. Rev. Fred Brown was pastor one year, followed by Rev. J. T. McGlothlin, who served, 1916-1921. Rev. Chesterfield Turner came to the church as pastor in 1921 and continued until December, 1832. The Sunday School plant was completed in 1928 at a cost of $84,000. Ross E. Dillon, pastor, 1933 to 1937, refinanced the building debt, and installed a church office.

      Fred T. Moffatt became pastor July 1, 1937, and now is in his twelfth year (1949). During this period the entire church debt has been paid, the plant greatly enlarged, the auditorum "completely renovated and transformed, Educational Director, and Financial Secretary added to the staff, the Unified Budget adopted and Building Fund began." The total membership of the church, in 1948, numbered 2593. Of this number 1865 are resident members, and 728 non-resident.18


      The First Baptist Church, Bowling Green, was constituted in 1818. The exact date is not known. The church was organized under the leadership of William Warder, who was the first pastor, and who served one fourth time in connection with the pastorate at Russellville, until his death, August, 1836. He received a salary of one hundred dollars a year. In January, 1837, J. M. Pendleton entered upon a pastorate of twenty years for full time, preaching twice on Sunday, with a weekly prayer meeting at a salary of $400 a year.

This was the largest remuneration received by any pastor in all that section of Kentucky. The new pastor was married to Miss Catherine Garnett, Glasgow, Kentucky, March 13, 1838, and they took their honeymoon on horse-back to Louisville, Kentucky.

      The old meeting house became inadequate to accommodate the growing congregation, and a lot was bought on Main Street at $7.00 per foot on which was erected a new building. The new house was occupied in 1854. Dr. Pendleton closed his pastorate, January 1, 1857, and moved to Murfreesboro, Tennessee. From 1857 to 1866, the following pastors served in succession: Thomas M. Vaughan, Thomas H. Storts, and Henry Ray. In 1866, George Hunt, a former president of Bethel College, served three years, and was succeeded by James M. Bent, who served three years. C. E. W. Dobbs was pastor, 1874-1880; J. F. Hardwick, 1881-1883; M. M. Riley, 1883-1891; W. A. Mason, 1891-1893; and E. V. Baldy, 1893-1899. William Lunsford, who was pastor, 1899-1903, resigned to promote the Old Ministers Relief Program of the Southern Baptist Convention.

      J. S. Dill was pastor from 1903 to 1911, and was succeeded by L. W. Doolan, who served from 1911 to 1915, and under his pastorate, the present commodious church building was erected at a cost of about $125,000, and dedicated on June 13, 1915. Dr. E. Y. Mullins, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, preached the dedicatory sermon before an audience of 2454 people by actual count. Finley F. Gibson became pastor in 1916, but closed his services in 1918 to become pastor of the Grace Street Church, Richmond, Virginia. Charles L. Greaves was pastor, 1918-1922; J. E. Hampton, 1923-1928, and H. B. Cross, 1928-1931.

      Jerome O. Williams began his pastorate in 1932 and resigned in 1934 to become Business Manager of the Sunday School Board, Nashville, Tennessee. R. T. Skinner succeeded Dr. Williams and continued until 1946, when he was elected editor of the Western Recorder. Harold J. Purdy, the present pastor, is in his third year (1949). The church numbers 2470 members.19

      Some additional historical data concerning the early history of the church at Bowling Green was found in an old manuscript written in long hand by Brother John Burnam, who came to Bowling Green in young manhood and lived there as a member of the Baptist church the rest of his life. Dr. W. C. Boone, General Secretary of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky, who furnished the author with this old document, is the great-grandson of John Burnam.

      This manuscript is the only record that gives the names of some of the charter members of the First Baptist Church, Bowling Green, including the following: "Daniel Smith and wife, Thomas McNeal, mother, sister; Woody Grub and wife, John Moorman and wife, John Thompson and wife, Brother Burgs and wife, and old Brother Keel, a superannuated-preacher and wife - and some others not recollected." He thus writes of Elder William Warder, the first pastor of the Bowling Green Church, who served eighteen years: "No preacher was more beloved than Brother William Warder as pastor. For efficiency, he was not surpassed, as a gospel preacher, he was in the first rank, as a good man, unequalled."

      Deacon Burnam writes concerning Philip S. Fall, who turned so many Baptists to Alexander Campbell, while he was pastor in Louisville. He says: "This young man Some 20 years old professed to be converted and was Baptized in 1818 or 19 by Elder Isaac Hodgens, and Very Soon commenced preaching (and was called the boy Preacher). The writer recollects to have heard him preach Several times in the year 1820 in Bowling Green. His youthful appearance, (21 years old), his ability to preach was attracting large crowds to hear him." He was extraordinarily accomplished, as to education and scholarship, being a native of England. Brother Burnam thus writes of Elder Jeremiah Vardeman the well known pioneer preacher in Kentucky: "In the year 1820, When Elder Vardeman was expected, There being no Hous of Worship, (The wether being warm) a brush Arbor was made on what (is known as the Tom Barnett lot,) where the People by hundreds assembled to hear the Great Revivalist - Vardeman, (Great in more ways than one, whose stature and weight was 275 to 300 pounds)."

      An account of calling a pastor in 1836, after the death of Elder William Warder, is given in this valuable manuscript: The writer says, "Daniel Smith, the oldest male member in the church was called to the chair, as Moderator, who opened by prayer, after which he stated the object, of the meeting was to call a pastor. There were several aged members present, and silence seemed to prevail for a time, when a young member arose and read a resolution, the purport of which was that Brother J. M. Pendleton be called as a permanent pastor at a salary of $400 per annum. A 'damper' seemed to prevail, the amount, being beyond the reach of the church, as stated by the Moderator. At length the question was taken by rising, when the result was unanimous - an effort was at once made, when the pledges of the brethern and sisters was equal to the task. Brother Pendleton entered upon his duties as pastor on the first day of January 1837 and labored faithfully and zealously for 20 years."

      The writer also gives accounts of some of the meetings held in those years. He says "During the Stay of Brother Pendleton with the Bowling Green Church, There was Several very interesting Meetings . . . . To wit, in the months of March & April, 1840, Elders John L. Burrows, & Alfred Taylor came to B. Green, (stopped at the home of the writer), and Bro. Burrows did all the Preaching and Bro. Taylor with the Pastor did the Mixing, Visiting and Instructions - Bro. Burrow's Labors in the Pulpit was owned and blessed of God. The result being on the Second week at the close, 26 were added by Baptism, on the 3rd Lord's day 26 more were received by Baptism. . . . Many others professed conversion. This was a meeting never to be forgotten by the members."

      This writer tells of another meeting: "Then a meeting long to be remembered (in Several respects) was held by Elder J. R. Graves in April 1852. As a preacher, Rev. J. R. Graves was at that time rarely equalled, he could hold a congregation spellbound for two hours & a half, a number were added to the church during this meeting. --"

      There were many other interesting events recorded in this manuscript concerning pastors and evangelists connected with the Bowling Green Church, but space forbids giving further consideration.


      The following is an account of the organization of the First Baptist Church of Hopkinsville. The New Providence Baptist Church, was constituted on June 6, 1818 at the private residence of John Pursley, situated about one mile west of the town of Hopkinsville, on the north bank of the West Fork of the Little River, near the Princeton road. The following ten names constituted the original members: James Payne, Sally Tally, Charles Thrift, Keziah Thrift, John Pursley, Grace Pursley, Henry Roland, Lucy Slaughter, Robert Slaughter, and Winnie Payne, colored. Elder James Payne, "a man of more than ordinary ability" was the first pastor. On the first Sunday in August the church agreed to build a meeting house in the western part of town, and this church was to be known as the "New Providence Baptist Church."

      Elder James Payne resigned as pastor on December 19, 1819; and was succeeded by Elder William Tandy, who entered upon his duties as pastor, December 20, 1820. Elder William Warfield became pastor, November 8, 1823, and continued until 1827, when he was succeeded by Elder Robert Rutherford. In August, 1833, J. M. Pendleton was received by letter, and was ordained to the ministry the following November, and was pastor of the church until August, 1836. During Elder Pendleton's pastorate, the name of the church was changed from New Providence to Hopkinsville Church, and Elder R. T. Anderson was called to serve as pastor for half of his time.

      In December, 1841, Rev. T. G. Keen was called to the pastorate and continued until 1847, when he was succeeded by Elder Samuel Baker, who preached once a month for one year, after which he was called for full time at a salary at $650 a year. Elder A. D. Sears became pastor in 1850 at a salary of $650, which was increased to $750 the next year, and to $1150 in 1857. During the pastorate of Elder Sears. Bethel Female College was established in Hopkinsville. He resigned in 1864, and was succeeded by Dr. T. G. Keen, who had been called for a second pastorate, in which he continued until 1883, a period of nineteen years.

      On April 2, 1884, Rev. J. N. Prestridge, pastor at New Castle, Kentucky, was called at a salary of $1200. Dr. Prestridge tendered his resignation in June, 1889, and was succeeded by Rev. Charles H. Nash, who entered upon his duties, April 16, 1890, and served fifteen years. An eligible lot for a new church building was purchased, located on Main Street. The church building was completed and occupied in 1894.

      Dr. Millard A. Jenkins was called to succeed Dr. Nash in 1906, and served two years, when he resigned and entered upon his long pastorate in Abilene, Texas. In June, 1909, Dr. C. M. Thompson became pastor and continued until 1918. Under Dr. L. W. Doolan's pastorate from 1919 to 1924, the 75 Million Campaign was put on in the church, and the quota of $75,000 was paid in full. Also during his pastorate, the Christian County Baptist Association was constituted in the fall of 1923. In November 1924, Dr. Doolan was succeeded by Rev. Perry Crumpton Walker, who came to Hopkinsville from a pastorate in Mississippi, and continued as pastor to 1947, a period of twenty-three years. He was succeeded by Dr. W.

Peyton Thurman, the present pastor. The church reported in 1948, 1542 members, and the Second Baptist Church, constituted in 1910, reported 1145 members, and Rev. J. H. Maddox, pastor.20


      The Baptist Church at Paris, the county seat of Bourbon County, was constituted in the court house on February 18, 1818 under the leadership of Elder Jeremiah Vardeman and David Biggs. The eight original members were Joel Prewett, Rachel Johnson, James and Phoebe Prichard, Agnes Pullen, George Bryan, Hanna Gorham, and Nicholas Talbott. Of these charter members, George Bryan, a former soldier in the Revolutionary War, appears to have had superior advantages educationally, since he chronicled the early events of the young organization in his own handwriting, which has been preserved.

      Elder Jeremiah Vardeman was the first pastor of the Paris Church and served until 1826. The first house of worship was completed in March, 1822, located on the corner of Winchester turnpike and Pleasant Street. Several ministers supplied the church with preaching from 1826 to the coming of William Vaughan in 1833, as the second pastor. In 1832 the church had grown to 455 members, including 153 colored. For the past five years there had been strife and division in the Baptist churches of Kentucky occasioned by the ministry of Alexander Campbell and his adherents. At this time a definite move was on to unite the Reformers led by Mr. Campbell, and the "Christians" led by Barton W. Stone. In December, 1832, the Paris Church adopted the "Act of Separation," The membership had already been divided by the preaching of the Reformers, but when the final separation came only 48 members were left to the Baptists. In January, 1833 these were reorganized, and made a new beginning. The historian says, "This small group was undaunted, and by January, 1876, members received into the church totaled 512."

      William Vaughan was succeeded in 1836 by Elder A. Goodell, and he in turn by G. C. Sedwick, each of the latter serving one year. R. T. Dillard was pastor, 1838-1842; J. W. Kenney, 1842-1844; J. R. Davis, 1844; G. G. Goss, 1845-47; T. J. Drane, 1847-48; E. Dow Isbell, 1848-49; S. L. Helm, 1849-51; J. M. Frost, Sr. 1851-53; J. R. Yeaman, 1853-54; and J. B. Link 1854-58. In 1857, the colored members of the Paris Church were organized into a separate church, called "The African Baptist Church," now the First Baptist Church Colored on Eighth Street.

      Elder George Varden was pastor of the white church through the entire Civil War period, 1858-1870. During his pastorate the old church building and pastor's home were sold, and a new site bought for $1000, which was on Sixth, formerly Locust, and Main Streets. The new house of worship was built at the new location during 1867-68, in spite of the depression following the destructive War between the States.

      Many well known preachers occupied the pulpit in the new building through the years. John Kingdom was pastor 1870-1872; C. S. McCloud, 1872; A. Meyer and L. H. Salin (converted Jew) 1872-1874; A. N. White, 1874-78; S. F. Taylor, 1878-1882; J. A. French, 1882-87; E. T. Alderman,

1887-1890; H. F. Daniel, 1890-91; A. J. Ramsey, 1891-96; F. W. Eberhardt, 1896-1901; G. W. Argabrite, 1901-06; and W. A. Simmons, 1904-06.

      During the pastorate of Rev. G. W. Clark, 1906-11 the present commodious house of worship was erected and dedicated December 18, 1910. E. M. Lightfoot was pastor, 1910-12; 0. R. Mangum, 1912-16; Arthur Fox, 1919-22; L. S. Gaines, 1922-27; Ross E. Dillon, 1927-1933; A. Warren Huyck, 1933-38; Charles F. Smith, 1938-1941; J. R. Davis, 1941-44, and William McLean Grogan, 1944-46. On June 16, 1946, fifty-five members withdrew from the First Baptist Church and formed the Central Baptist Church on High Street.

      Rev. John Howard Whitt became pastor November 1, 1946, a short while after he was released from the United States Army, and led the church in promoting every department of work. The church reported to Elkhorn Association in 1948, 1122 members, 331 enrolled in Sunday school and Rev. S. H. Cockburn, pastor. The Central Church, constituted two years before, reported 152 members, 213 enrolled in Sunday school, and Rev. J. Bill Jones, pastor.21


      An old church manual says: "The Russellville Baptist Church, was constituted in the town of Russellville, Logan County, November 24, 1818 by Elders Leonard Page, Ambrose Bourne and Sugg Fort, with ten members as follows: Spencer Curd, Drury W. Poor, John Poindexter, Thomas Grubbs, William Kerchival, Catherine Owens, Elizabeth Rollins, Mary Kerchival, Catharine Curd, and Betsy Poor. Brethren from sister churches werep resent. The church adopted ten articles . . . of its belief." In February, 1819, Leonard Page was chosen pastor to preach once a month on the second Lord's day and Saturday before. On September 19, 1819 the church joined the Red River Association. At the close of Elder Page's pastorate, January, 1821, the church reported 102 white members, and 69 colored.

      Elder William Warder succeeded Elder Page, February, 1821 to preach half time, and to receive for his services from $300 to $400 according as the members agreed to pay. In September, 1828 the church left the Red River Association and united with Bethel Association, organized three years before. In 1831, the balance of the debt was paid on the union meeting house, which was owned jointly by the Baptists and Cumberland Presbyterians. In the latter part of 1832 and in early 1833 a revival prevailed, which resulted in many additions. Among these were the Longs and the Nortons, who were to do so much for the church, and who were later to become well known in Baptist ranks. Elder Warder closed his pastorate in July, 1836, and died one month later.

      After a number of short pastorates by Elder R. T. Anderson and others, Elder Samuel Baker became pastor in 1841 at a salary of $600 and use of parsonage for full time preaching. On March 1, 1844, the church was incorporated under the style of "Russellville United Baptist Church." In May, 1847 two pastors were employed to succeed Elder

Samuel Baker; Elder E. D. Brown, for three-fourth time, at a salary of $300 and Elder W. I. Morton, for one-fourth time, $100.

      Dr. W. W. Gardner began his pastorate, December, 1857, and served twelve years. The Southern Baptist Convention met in Russellville in 1866 during Dr. Gardner's pastorate. He resigned in 1870 to head the new Theological department in Bethel College. Elder W. W. Chambliss was the next pastor and served two years. He was succeeded by Dr. Samuel Baker, who began his second pastorate in 1872 at a salary of $1200, and parsonage. When this beloved pastor resigned in 1885, the church was established in sound doctrine, in increased membership, and in a knowledge of the Scriptures. On December 23, 1880, Colonel Thomas Grubbs, the last of the charter members of the church, passed away at the age of 94 years.

      Dr. S. M. Provence was called to the pastorate of the church in 1885, and resigned, October, 1887 to become pastor of the First Baptist Church, Boonville, Missouri. Dr. Jonathan G. Bow succeeded Dr. Provence, and served two years. On April 17, 1898 the contract was let for a new church building, and on the fourth Sunday in April, 1903 the building was dedicated, and the dedicatory sermon was preached by Dr. E. C. Dargan of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. W. C. James became pastor May 1, 1906, and after serving two years was followed by Rev. Charles Anderson. During the pastorate of Rev F. L. Hardy, in June, 1917, the church raised funds to send Miss Mary Nelle Lyne, one of the members, to China as a missionary under the Foreign Mission Board, Richmond, Virginia. On June 12, 1918 the one hundredth Anniversary of the church was observed with a special service. The sermon was preached by the pastor, F. L. Hardy, and the history of the church was read by the Clerk, A. C. Hodgen.

      Dr. W. W. Landrum came as pastor of the church, August 19, 1919, after long service in the territory of the Southern Baptist Convention. After six years' service as pastor and professor in Bethel College, he became so infirm that he was made pastor emeritus, and he passed into the beyond, January 24, 1926.

      Dr. C. B. Jackson was called to succeed the lamented Dr. Landrum, June 27, 1926. The contract for an educational building was signed June 15, 1927, to cost $17,967.50, exclusive of furnishings. The first service was held in the new addition, November 27, 1927. Dr. Jackson resigned in the spring of 1935 to accept a call to the First Baptist Church, Greenville, Texas, and was succeeded by Dr. J. P. Scruggs in September, who served five years.

      Dr. E. L. Skiles became pastor, July, 1941, and resigned September 15, 1943 to accept a call to the Bainbridge Street Church, Richmond, Virginia. Dr. William Peyton Thurman became pastor, January 1, 1944; and continued until 1947, when he responded to a call from the First Baptist Church, Hopkinsville. The First Church, Russellville, reported to the Bethel Association in 1948, 896 members, 474 enrolled in Sunday school, and Dr. Howard D. Olive, pastor.22


      The Glasgow Baptist Church was constituted on Saturday, January 10, 1818 of thirteen members at the home of Richard Garnett by a Presbytery, consisting of Elder Jacob Locke, Moderator, Ralph Pettit, Cornelius Deweese and William Warder. The first service was held at the Garnett home on the second Saturday in February, 1818. William Warder was Moderator, and was called as the first pastor, and served until April, 1821, when he was succeeded by Elder Pete Bainbridge, who continued until October, 1825. William Logan was the first deacon, was also church clerk, 1818-1827, and later served as treasurer for a period. In 1828, during the pastorate of Elder Jacob Locke, 1825-1829, a weekly prayer meeting was started to meet on Sunday evenings, and the practice of meeting ait that time continued thirty years, since there was no preaching service held on Sunday evening. After two short pastorates, those of Elder Joseph W. Davis and Thomas Scrivner, Elder Jacob Locke was called to the pastorate the second time, in August, 1832 and continued until August, 1842. In 1837 the church arranged to have preaching two Sundays in the month.

      The Glasgow Church united with the Green River Association soon after its organization and remained until 1840, and then went into the forming of the Liberty Association. The church had a steady growth until 1828, when it was disrupted by the teachings of Alexander Campbell. After recovering from this division, the church received another set-back caused by the anti-mission controversy in the Green River Association, which hindered the progress of the work.

      During the pastorate of Elder Robert W. Thomas, 1850-1852, "a roomy comfortable" house of worship was erected, which was "an oblong two story brick building" located on a lot given by Richard Garnett. The house was dedicated in 1851, and the sermon on the occasion was preached by Elder J. M. Pendleton, pastor at Bowling Green. During all the years prior to this time the church held services in the meeting house owned jointly by the Old School Presbyterians, Cumberland Presbyterians, and Baptists. In 1852, the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky was held in the new Glasgow Baptist Church house.

      An interesting event transpired in the church congregation, when on March 13, 1938, Miss Catherine Garnett, a faithful member, and Elder James Madison Pendleton, pastor at Bowling Green, Kentucky, were married. The ceremony was performed by Elder Jacob Locke, the pastor. Elder Pendleton became pastor of the Glasgow Church in 1842 in connection with his pastorate at Bowling Green, and continued until October, 1849.

      In 1867, the pastor, Elder Nathaniel Y. Terry, recommended to the church that Peter Murrell, a former slave, a man of good mind, and much force of character be ordained to the Baptist ministry. The pastor also suggested that a house of worship be erected, and that the negro members of the Glasgow Baptist Church be released to form their own church. Brother Terry, the pastor, preached the ordination sermon of Peter

Murrell, the distinguished colored brother, and presented him the Bible, which he had taught Peter to read. When the Baptist church house was completed, Uncle Peter and his colored flock moved in.

      In 1875, at the close of the second pastorate of Elder Nathaniel Y. Terry, and during the pastorate of Elder Ernest Petri, 1876-1877. the Glasgow Baptist Church led in establishing Liberty College in Glasgow, which meant much to the church through the years. In March, 1894 Elder Nathaniel Y. Terry, in his third pastorate, was assisted in a meeting by J. M. Bruce, President of Liberty College, which resulted in seventy additions to the church, forty-three being by baptism. A new brick house of worship was erected on the foundation of the old church house, which was commodious, and which met the needs of the growing congregation. On the fifth Sunday in June, 1895, Dr. T. T. Eaton, pastor of the Walnut Street Church, Louisville, Kentucky preached the dedication sermon.

      Dr. J. W. Loving became pastor in February, 1900 and was married to Miss Heiter Dickinson of Glasgow, April 8, 1901. Rev. George C. Gates, a noted evangelist, assisted Pastor Loving in a meeting, September 23 to October 6, 1901, which resulted in seventy-four baptized, and a total of 119 additions. Dr. A. Paul Bagby, was pastor, 1908-1911; Rev. W. H. Williams, 1912-1914; Rev. Ira D. S. Knight, 1914-1918; Rev. Pope A. Duncan, 1918-1923; and Rev. John A. Easley, 1923-1928.

      In February, 1929, Dr. Joseph A. Gaines began his duties as pastor and continued to 1941, during which time the membership increased from 780 to 1200. This beloved pastor died April 8, 1941, after months of suffering. The funeral service was held in the church, led by Rev. W. H. Moody, pastor at Bardstown, Kentucky.

      Rev. Sam Ed Bradley, Educational Director of the Church, entered upon his work as full pastor, February, 1941, and continued until February, 1946, when he accepted a call from the church at Fulton, Kentucky. Rev. Charles W. Knight, Jr., succeeded Brother Bradley and served until November 1947. Dr. Victor Bradford Curry began his pastorate, June 24, 1948. Plans have been adopted to erect a three story brick building, one hundred by sixty-five feet to house all the Sunday school from the nursery through young people's department, to be built on an adjoining lot to the present building. The church reported to the Liberty Association in 1948, 1314 members, 946 enrolled in the Sunday school, and $16,735.00 contributed to mission and benevolent causes.23


      The first Baptist church constituted near the town of Lexington was Town Fork. The church derived its name from a branch of Elkhorn, which flowed through the town of Lexington, and along this stream were early settlements. The Town Fork church was organized with ten members, in July, 1786 located about two miles from the town, and it united with the Elkhorn Association the following August. Among the original members were Edward Payne, William Payne, William Stone, and Thomas Lewis. The preachers present were Lewis Craig, John Taylor, Ambrose Dudley and Augustine Eastin. The "great and good" John Gano was the first pastor, and served from 1786 to 1803.24

      Elder Jacob Creath was the second pastor of the Town Fork church, having entered upon his duties in 1804. The church reported 91 members in 1813. During these years the church was cursed with division and strife, which terminated in the division of the Elkhorn Association and the wrecking of the Town Fork Church.

      In 1817, there was a church on Mill Street called the First Baptist Church of Lexington of which Dr. James Fishback became pastor and continued until 1827. This church was a member of the Elkhorn Association. Dr. Fishback "was very liberal both in doctrine and practice." Later he "gave considerable help and encouragement to the Reform movement," led by Alexander Campbell, "often meeting with them and advocating: sentiments of union of believers."25 It was stated in another connection that Alexander Campbell preached in the First Baptist Church, Lexington, October, 1823, on his first visit to Kentucky, and Dr. Fishback the pastor, was greatly impressed with the man and message. In 1827, the First Baptist Church of Lexington began to call itself "The Church of Christ on Mill Street."

      The church under the changed name sent messengers to the Elkhorn Association in 1827 in session at David's Fork. The following resolution was adopted: "It is with deep and sincere regret that this Association learned that an unhappy difference has taken place in the First Baptist Church at Lexington, so as to rend that Church as it were assunder, on account of an attempt made by part of the Church, lead on by Dr. James Fishback, to change her denominative name. The difficulty has run so high that both parties claim to be the church and have exercised in distinct and separate bodies the privileges and business of Churches; so that Dr. Fishback and his party have excluded 7 of the most prominent members opposed to them; and those opposed to Fishback and his party proceeded to exclude Dr. Fishback and his party to the number of 42 members; . . . . This association . . . being satisfied, that the first Baptist Church of Lexington, is the regular church at that place, received her letter to the exclusion of that presented by Dr. Fishback and his party; and they would earnestly advise the first Baptist Church at Lexington to use her best exertion, in charity, to restore the fellowship and harmony in the Church; and the Association would also most solemnly warn that part of the Church attached to Dr. Fishback, of the awful danger and alarming tendency of causing division in society by the introduction of a system of things by which the name and character of the Baptist denomination would be essentially changed, and we adjure them in love to return to the Church from which they have rent themselves."

      The records of the Association thus describe the procedure: "Two letters were presented to the Association purporting to be from the 'First Baptist Church at Lexington.' One under the original name of the First Baptist Church at Lexington, and the other under the name of 'The Church of Christ on Mill Street.' A motion was made to read both letters, which was overruled; the causes of division of that church being set forth in discussion. And on motion the letter, with the original name and style of the Church, was read by a unanimous vote, and the Messengers therein named took their seats."

      Dr. Fishback continued as pastor of around 40 members under the I name of Church of Christ for about nine years, but the church did not prosper, and the pastor and little band returned to the First Baptist Church, Lexington, from which they had seceded, and a happy union was effected in 1836, when Dr. Fishback was a messenger to the Elkhorn Association for the last time as he died the following year. His biographer says, "Dr. Fishback was a fine scholar, and excellent speaker, and an easy fluent writer. But he was unstable in all his ways."26

      Elder Jeremiah Vardeman became pastor of the First Baptist Church, Lexington, in 1827 following the division and continued until 1830. He became firmly established in the Baptist position and stayed the forces toward Campbellism in the church. Elder J. B. Smith was pastor in 1831 and stood firm for the Baptist position. Dr. R. T. Dillard, a very able man who had come to Kentucky from Virginia in 1817, was pastor, 1832-1835; and restored peace and harmony in the church. Dr. Silas M. Noel became pastor in 1835 and continued until his death, May 5, 1839. William F. Broaddus was pastor, 1840-1845; when the church reached three hundred members; William M. Pratt, 1845-1863; W. H. Felix, 1863-1869; George Hunt, 1869-1873: L. B. Woolfolk, 1873-1878; Lansing Burrows, 1879-1884; J. C. Hiden, 1884-1887; W. H. Felix, 1887-1898, and Preston Blake, 1898-1908.

      J. W. Porter was pastor, 1908-1922, and led in a great church building program. Dr. George Ragland was ordained to the ministry by order of the church in 1922, and became pastor and is now in the 27th year of service (1949). The church numbered 1082 members in 1948.27


      The Harmony Baptist Church, in Caldwell County, was constituted in the house of William Lester on Friday, November 7, 1823 of seventeen members. The first effort to form a church in the Lester community is described in the records as follows: "Under the directing of a kind providence some person or persons were influenced to set on foot subscriptions for the purpose of building a meeting house in the vicinity of William Lester and finding the undertaking likely to succeed, all the members of the Eddy Grove, Dry Fork, and Muddy Fork Churches were of the unanimous opinion that the establishing of a church at the site of the proposed new meeting house would be a blessing to the neighborhood."

      Accordingly all who were interested in such an enterprise agreed to meet at the house of William Lester on Saturday before the First Lord's Day in July, 1823. Nine brethren and sisters met to consider the organization of a church, but some were indifferent and it was agreed to hold another meeting in the same home on Saturday before the second Lord's day in October, and that all, who were interested, should obtain letters in the meantime from their various churches. At this meeting eight brethen were present at the appointed time and place and made all arrangements to constitute the church in November.

      On Friday, November 7, the following met at the home of William Lester and presented their letters of dismission from their churches to become charter members of the new church to be constituted: Elder Balaam

Ezell, Major Groom, John Ginnings, Thomas Draper, Benjamin Snellings, William Snellings, Robert Draper, William Mallory, Elizabeth Draper, Elizabeth Ezell, Christine Groom, Rachel Ginnings, Sarah Snellings, Sally E. Snellings, Vincent Snellings, Lucinda Mallory, Fanny Snellings. These seventeen members covenanted together and by the Presbytery were formed into a church, which was to be known as Harmony Baptist Church. Services were held on Saturday and Sunday following and a number of others presented their letters and came in as members. It was agreed to let the contract for finishing the meeting house out to the lowest bidder. Brethren William Lester and Major Groom were appointed to attend to this business on the 17th day of the month.

      The Harmony Church was supplied with preaching by various ministers until September, 1825, when Elder Dudley Williams was called, as the first pastor. He was well known in Little River Association, having served as Moderator of that body for six years. At the business meeting in June, 1836 there was an extended discussion as to the propriety of building a new meeting house. The church agreed to building a new house of worship on the Harmony situation thirty by fifty feet of brick to be well finished, provided subscriptions could be obtained to meet the demand. A committee was appointed to obtain subscriptions. The records show that the church began to hold services in the homes of the members, but in February, 1838 permanent arrangements were made to hold services in the school house. In April, 1839 the new meeting house was again under consideration, when a committee was appointed to raise funds to purchase additional land.

      In the latter part of 1839, and in early 1840, unfavorable reports began to be circulated against the pastor, Elder Dudley Williams, which caused great confusion in the church. A certificate was presented to the church charging immorality. On June 15, 1840, Elder Williams wrote the following to the church: "Dear Brethren: This will inform you that I withdraw myself as a member of your body, and am no longer accountable to your tribunal." He was finally excluded from the church. Dr. J. H. Spencer says: "His name disappears from the associational records, about 1839."

      In August the same year Elder James Mansfield, one of the most useful and highly esteemed ministers in West Kentucky, was called and became the second pastor of the Harmony Church. Elder Mansfield informed the church by letter that, as pastor, he would not come as a partisan to any in the church trouble, but to preach the word without favor; and that it would be necessary to change the day of meeting from the first Lord's day in the month to the fourth and Saturday before. The church accepted his proposition and agreed to give him one hundred dollars for twelve months' service beginning in August, 1840. A committee was appointed to have the doors and windows of the meeting house painted and otherwise made ready to occupy. At the September meeting a janitor was elected to keep the house clean, and to make fires in the winter, to receive $30 for the twelve months.

      In 1842, William C. Caldwell, and Alfred Wilson were ordained to the gospel ministry by the Harmony Church. In January, 1844 William

Acred, colored, the property of Benjamin Quisenberry "was granted license to exercise his gifts in preaching until he was satisfied as to his qualifications." Also T. W. Matlock was ordained by the church, December, 1852. In August, 1850 the Little River Association met with the Harmony Church, which reported 127 members. After thirteen years of service, Elder Mansfield closed his pastorate in 1853. For the thirteen years his salary amounted to $1308.50, and he had received $923.67. The sum of $248.50 was raised, and an effort was made to get the balance from unpaid pledges.

      In December, 1853, Elder J. F. White was called, accepted and became the third pastor. In May, 1854 the church, in order "to improve the singing among us organized singing classes, expected to carry the different parts," classed off so as to have seven tenors, six basses, and six lady trebles. In April, 1858 Elder White offered his resignation as pastor, and in May, 1859 Elder J. U. Spurlin, well known in West Kentucky, was called at a salary of $150 for monthly preaching. In January, 1860 the church experienced a great revival, when thirty whites and twenty-nine colored, the servants of the members of the church, were received by baptism.

      A committee which had been appointed on erecting a new church building, reported "in favor of a house fifty by sixty feet to work in all the old material, that is possible to work in." The committee was requested to inquire into the cost of such a building. In January, 1861 another great revival came to the church, in which a large number, both of whites and colored, were baptized. In January, 1862 a revival continued seventeen days, resulting in sixty-two members received by baptism, of whom six were colored. Many of those baptized from this meeting, lived in the Harmony Church, in their posterity. In April, 1864 charges were brought against Enoch, a colored brother, the property of L. B. Sims, who was excluded.

      Elder J. U. Spurlin, who led the church through the long War between the States, resigned in 1867, and in May of the same year, Elder William Gregston, who had served churches in Little River Association, was called to the pastorate, and began his labors at once. He continued until the May meeting in 1882, when Elder R. W. Morehead, who had resigned the church at Princeton, was called as pastor. He served the New Bethel Church, Lyon County, in connection with the Harmony Church, which agreed to pay him $250 for one year to preach two Sundays in a month. After continuing nine years, Elder Morehead closed his labors with the Harmony Church, and was succeeded in 1891 by Elder Ben M. Bogard.

      At the church meeting February, 1892 a weekly prayer meeting was established. Elder J. H. Coleman was called to succeed Elder Bogard in May, 1894 and agreed to accept the pastorate if an agreement could be reached in regard to the salary. At the business meeting on the fourth Saturday in September, 1894 the request came that the Sunday service be dismissed and that the pastor and congregation attend a revival meeting at Otter Pond, conducted by Brother Bob Ramey under a tent. The motion prevailed and the Harmony Church was dismissed to attend the meeting at Otter Pond, which resulted in the organization of the Otter Pond Baptist Church.

      Elder Coleman continued as pastor until December, 1898 when Elder J. H. Spurlin was called to the pastorate. He continued until 1902 - four years. The church had various ministers to supply the pulpit until January, 1906 when Elder T. C. Carter became pastor, and continued until September, 1920 - a period of fourteen years. Professor O. W. Yates of Bethel College, Russellville, was called to the pastoral care of the Harmony Church in October, 1920 to preach the first Sunday in each month and Saturday before 3 P. M. at a salary of $500 for the year beginning December, 1920 to December, 1921.

      In October, 1934 Dr. O. W. Yates resigned to accept a position with Ouachita College, Arkadelphia, Arkansas. Rev. Buel T. Wells was called in July, 1935 at a salary of $400 for twelve months, and continued as pastor until August, 1941. Rev. Luther Dorsey was the next pastor, who began his pastoral duties March, 1942 and was succeeded by Rev. T. N. Shaddox in July, 1944. Rev. Fred Wood became pastor in June, 1947.

      At the business meeting, Saturday, September 17, 1948, the motion prevailed that the trustees be authorized to represent the church in entering into a necessary building contract with the Otter Pond Baptist Church, and to borrow money for the building not to exceed fifteen thousand dollars, and to pledge the credit of the church jointly with the Otter Pond Church to pay the said amount. On Sunday morning, September 18, the motion carried that Brother Jimmie Mitchell of Otter Pond Church act as Treasurer of the building fund of the new church to be called Midway. The Finance Committee of the Midway Church reported to the Harmony Church on February 13, 1949, cash in bank $21,434, and borrowed $15,000 with which to erect the building.

      On March 13, 1949, the motion carried "That Harmony Baptist Church be closed out on the second Sunday in April, and Clerk be instructed to begin to close the records, with the authority to grant letters for three months from date. Also that the Trustees of the Harmony Church be instructed to dispose of the church building the way they think best."28 The Otter Pond Baptist Church constituted September 8, 1895, took similar action about the same time, to dissolve by granting all members letters of dismission.

      On Sunday, April 17, 1949, at 3 P. M., a group of the former members of the Harmony and Otter Pond Baptist Churches met in a new commodious meeting house, which had been erected jointly by the two congregations, for the purpose of constituting themselves into a new church organization. A Council was formed, composed of the ordained ministers present, consisting of H. G. M. Hatler, Shirley DeBell, F. M. Masters, John Ivey, and T. N. Shaddox. H. G. M. Hatler was elected Moderator of the Council, and Shirley DeBell, Secretary. A petition was presented to the Council by Fred Wood, the last pastor of the two dissolved churches, setting forth the need and desire for the new church, together with the proposed Articles of Faith, and Covenant. The Council then recognized the 163 members, who presented their letters, as charter members oi a regular, constituted church, under the name of Midway Baptist Church, Caldwell County, Kentucky. Dr. Fred Wood was then elected pastor, and Homer

Mitchell, clerk. A sermon was delivered to the new church by H. G. M. Hatler, pastor of the First Baptist Church, Princeton, and who was then Moderator of the Caldwell Baptist Association.


      The Little Bethel, the second Baptist church planted in Union County, was constituted September 14, 1820, of the following nine members: William Hammock, Jeremiah Collins, Asher Cox, Charles Buck, Wm. C. Buck, Peggy Young, Sarah Collins, Elizabeth Young, and Christopher Young. Elder William C. Buck gathered the church and was the first pastor and served until 1835 - fifteen years. The church, soon after it was constituted, went into the organization of the Highland Association, and remained a member of that body until 1836. In the meantime, the Association interfered with the churches in their work of promoting the missionary enterprise. The Little Bethel Church excluded nine members and two deacons for adhering to the Association against an act of the church.

      The Association nullified the act of the church, hence the withdrawal, and the forming of the Little Bethel Association. Elder Richard Jones succeeded Elder Wm. C. Buck in the pastoral office in 1837, after which the church has been served by the following pastors in succession: J. W. Collins, John Withers, T. B. Rushing, M. H. Utley, N. Lacy, Collin Hodge, J. C. Hopewell, J. M. E. Bell, S. W. Martin, J. J. Barnett and J. B. Haynes. The pastors, who served this church after 1890 are unknown. In 1920, Rudolph Lane became pastor and served ten years. In 1927 the church numbered 100 members, and in 1947 it numbered 34 members, and Rev. A. L. Doer was pastor.29


      The First Baptist Church in Henderson was constituted at the home of James W. Clay on August 12, 1839 of thirty-five members. One of the charter members was Lydia Hickman Lockett, a daughter of the noted pioneer preacher, William Hickman. For one hundred years some of the Lockett family have been members of the Henderson Church. Elder J. L. Burrows, who came to Kentucky in 1836, led in the gathering of the church, and was the first pastor. The present lot at the corner of Elm and Center Streets was purchased from Mr. James Alves. The first deacons were Fountain Cunningham, and John C. Cheaney. Elder Burrows resigned in 1840 to become pastor of the Sanson Street Baptist Church, Philadelphia. He returned to Kentucky in 1874 to accept the pastorate of the Broadway Church, Louisville.

      Elder H. B. Wiggins was the second pastor of the Henderson Church. He was ordained to the ministry by the Glasgow Baptist Church at Glasgow, Kentucky, and was described as a man of fine culture and esteemed for his piety and usefulness. He was followed in succession by Elders George Matthew, Sidney Dyer and A. R. Macey, concerning whom we have no knowledge. Elder I. T. Tichenor, a native of Spencer County, was the next pastor. He became a great leader among Southern Baptists. Elder John Bryce, a native of Virginia, and a man of eminent ability, came as pastor in 1851, and served eleven years. In 1860, he was assisted by George C. Lorimer in a revival, which resulted in a number of additions to the

church. Among this number were three young men, George F. Pentecost, William Harris, and Paschal Hickman Lockett, all of whom became well known ministers of the gospel. P. H. Lockett, first became a prominent jurist, and later a preacher. He was county judge of Henderson County for twenty years, and was pastor of the Henderson Church during the last two years of his service as county judge, and rendered great service. His last pastorate was at Trenton, in Bethel Association, where he died on July 30, 1890.

      In 1862, Elder H. D. Straton became pastor of the church, and caused quite a commotion, by having a brother excluded for attending a circus. Under the pastorate of Dr. J. M. Phillips the church was brought from a mission church receiving aid from the Baptist State Board of Missions, to self support. Dr. George H. Simmons, the next pastor, started a movement to erect a needed church building, and also led in opening a mission at Audubon.

      Dr. J. M. Sallee, began his pastorate, in 1891, and led the church in the erection of the present house of worship. The cornerstone was laid in 1893, and the house was soon completed. Dr. F. W. Taylor became pastor in 1899, and was succeeded by Dr. Leonard W. Doolan, who resigned in 1904. Dr. Doolan was succeeded by Dr. Cecil V. Cook, who served to about 1910, and was followed by G. W. Clark, F. W. Hardy and Dr. O. E. Mangum. Rev. Logan B. English followed Dr. Mangum and continued until 1931, when Rev. Brown B. Smith was called and served until 1944. In 1945, the church reported 1211 members, and Rev. E. Keevil Judy, pastor, In 1948, the church helped form the West Kentuckiana Association.30


      The New Bethel Baptist Church, in Lyon County, was constituted in the home of John Cammack on April 4, 1812 of twenty-three members, whose names were as follows: John Stone, Moses Arnold, John Duncan, Stephen Bennett, John McElroy, Andrew Jones, Elizabeth Jones, Nancy Stone, Martha Sullivant, John Stone, Jr., George Owens, Samuel Hill, Polly Hill, Joseph Cobb, Ann Cobb, William Jones, Morning Stone, John Aldredge, William Chandler, Nancy Arnold, and two named Pertle, whose initials are not given. The preachers, who took part in the organization were James Rucker, Washington Thurman, and the pioneer Daniel Brown. Brown had a part in the forming of the Red River Association in 1807 and of the Little River in 1813; and also led in the gathering of the Eddy Grove Church in 1799, and of the Salem Church, Livingston County, in 1805. For sixteen years the church had no regular pastor, but was served by various preachers in that section.

      In January, 1828 Elder James Mansfield became the first pastor and served until 1853, a period of twenty-five years. He is described as "one of the most laborious, useful and highly esteemed preachers, that ever labored in Kentucky." He was a native of Virginia, came to Kentucky in 1815, and settled in Caldwell County in 1819, and united with the New Bethel Church, which licensed him to preach on May 20 the following year. In 1825, the Donaldson Church desired him as pastor, and at the request of the church, he became a member and was ordained as its pastor,

and remained twenty-five years. He was also pastor of the Harmony Church from 1840 until his death on Sunday, October 20, 1853. Mrs. Mansfield left the New Bethel Church $100 in her will.

      Elder Joel E. Grace was the second pastor. He served from 1845 to 1858, and was succeeded by Elder Collin Hodge, who was pastor until 1860. Elder Seldon Y. Trimble was pastor for nine years during the Civil War from 1860 to 1869. He and Mrs. Trimble had spent some years as missionaries to Africa. He was the father of Hon. S. Y. Trimble, Hopkinsville, and of the late H. L. Trimble, Russellville. Elder William Gregston, and Elder Milton C. Cockrill served three and one years respectively. Elder R. W. Morehead began his pastorate of the New Bethel Church in 1874, and continued twenty-six years. He was also pastor at Princeton and at the Harmony Church.

      Since 1900 fourteen pastors have served the New Bethel Church as follows: T. A. Conway, 1901-1902; M. E. Miller, 1903-1909; F. M. Wilson, 1909-1910; J. N. Henson, 1910-1916; J. G. Hughes, 1917-1918; J. W. McGavack, 1918-1920; J. C. Lilly, 1920-1922; Grady Herndon, 1922-1924; L. J. Knoth, 1924-1927; G. O. Cavanah, 1927-1930; H. A. Egbert, 1930 - ten months; C. H. Wilson, 1931-1944; and Dale F. Taylor, 1945-1948.

      The New Bethel Church entered into the organization of the Little River Association in August, 1813 with sixteen other churches, and remained in that body until the Caldwell Association was formed in 1924. The church erected the first meeting house in 1824 on a plot of ground given by Larkin Bennett. This being a small building it was enlarged in 1824, but burned down in 1831. The present house of worship was built of brick in 1832, located about a mile north of the site of the first house, on a lot given by Leasil Stone, the father of Captain Stone. This building has been kept in good repair. It is located midway between Kuttawa and Fredonia, on the east side of the highway named for Ollie James, in a beautiful grove of sugar maples.

      In 1948, the New Bethel Church reported to the Caldwell Association 136 members, Rev. Reed Rushing, pastor, and that a home for the pastor had been purchased.31


      The Gilead Baptist Church, located near Glendale, in Hardin County, was constituted March 17, 1824, by Elder Warren Cash, who came to Kentucky from Virginia in 1784 after having served as a private four years in the Colonial Army. He had previously married Miss Susannah Baskett, a daughter of a Baptist preacher, in Fluvanna County, Virginia, who was a fair scholar. In the spring of 1785, he and his wife were converted and became members of the Clear Creek Church, where John Taylor was pastor. He was twenty-five years old when he was converted, and was so illiterate that he did not know the alphabet. His wife began to teach him, so that when he entered the ministry, he was able to read the Bible.

      Warren Cash came to Hardin County in 1806 and organized the Bethel Church and became pastor. He became pastor of the Gilead Church, and

continued until 1840. The following members went into its organization: Warren Cash, Abraham Cash, Bailey S. Tabb, Jacob Vanmeter, Mary Combs, Hetty Briscoe, Catherine Drury, Oliva Drury, Sarah Drury, Catharine Cash, Susan Cash, Ruth Vanmeter, Nancy Vanmeter, Sarah Tabb, Kitty Glover, Deborah Cash, Elinor Best, Penelope Stark, Rebeckah Vanmeter, and Millie Shepherd. The church was admitted to membership in the Salem Association, September, 1824, and Elders Warren Cash and Bailey S. Tabb were enrolled as messengers. In 1825, the same two messengers attended the Salem Association and reported thirty-one members, and in 1831, the church reported 64 members.

      In 1840 the membership divided on the subject of missions, when Warren Cash, the pastor, led off a large part of the members, and organized an anti-mission church under the name of "Regular Baptists." Both organizations worshipped in the same house for a number of years. The original church called as pastor, Elder James Nail, who served until 1842, when he met sudden death in falling from his horse. In 1852, Elder W. L. Morris, a native of Hardin County was chosen pastor and served until 1857, when he was succeeded by Elder J. Tol. Miller, who continued ten years. In December, 1857 the church began to hold weekly prayer meetings, and on April 4, 1858 a Bible class was organized. On October 22, 1859 the church agreed to pay $30.00 to become a life member of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky, according to the revised constitution of that body.

      The "Regular Baptists" were still holding services in the meeting house in 1859, and a committee was appointed to confer with them, as to whether they would permit the Gilead Baptist Church to occupy the house on the second Sunday in each month. The use of the house for the extra Sunday was denied. On April 21, 1860, Elder J. Tol. Miller was called to preach twice a month, notwithstanding the "Regular Baptists" refused the meeting house for the second Sunday. The church reported at this time, the amount for the pastor, $112.00; for Home Missions $23.50; for the sexton $16.00; for minutes $1.00; sacramental purposes, $1.00; total $147.50. The following appears on the records, December 21, 1861: "Owing to the health of our pastor, and the large army encamped in our neighborhood, there has been no meeting from the 24th of August to December 21, 1861."

      When the Lynnland College opened in the fall of 1868, Rev. G. A. Coulson, a Baptist minister, who had united with the Gilead Church was appointed the first principal of the school, with authority to conduct its afairs. He is described as "An imprudent, ambitious young man, with a stubborn conviction of self sufficiency." He soon began to preach contrary to Baptist teaching, which caused disturbances in the churches, and hurt to the school. His preaching, his peculiar doctrine in the Gilead and other churches caused the Salem Association to sound the alarm against Coulson, who claimed no promises are made to the unbaptized. The matter was brought into the Gilead Church, and as a result of the confusion, the pastor, Elder J. Tol. Miller, left the meeting, taking with him forty members, who declared themselves the Gilead Church, and proceeded to organize as such and called as pastor Elder J. H. Brown, who claimed the first

Saturday and Sunday in each month. The Coulson party, also claiming to be the Gilead Church, occupied the fourth Saturday and Sunday in each month. Dr. J. M. Weaver of Louisville, Dr. J. H. Spencer, Dr. R. M. Dudley, and others were called in counsel over the trouble, and after repeated conferences, a compromise was reached, October, 1869. Elder Coulson and his family had already received letters, and a few months later Elder Miller was given a letter and went to Texas. The church, because of the trouble, was pastorless from August, 1868 to June, 1871. Letters were granted the colored members in January, 1871.

      In August, 1872 a committee was appointed to consider repairs on the meeting house, which reported "That the Free Masons had agreed to repair the house, put on a good substantial roof, and put the house in first class condition", provided they were permitted to put in an upper floor with stairway to be used as lodge rooms. The church accepted the proposition, and met in a school while the repairing was in operation. In April, 1875 the church organized a Sunday school.

      Elder N. G. Terry became pastor in March, 1877, and continued until October, 1884. A committee was appointed in April, 1880 to find a location for a new church building. The arrangements were made to take down the old building, and erect a new one, which was completed and ready to occupy in February, 1881. Elder W. H. Williams became pastor in January, 1885, and the church agreed to have preaching two Sundays in each month. Elder O. L. Bronson became pastor January 1, 1889; Elder J. B. Moody in July, 1891, and Elder John D. Jordan in June 1892 "for two Sundays in each month with a guaranteed salary of $400.00 per year and as much additional as the church could raise." Elder J. T. Barrow became pastor in May, 1898, and served until his sudden death by accident, July 10, 1899. Elder W. H. Bringle became pastor in 1899, and served until 1901, when he was succeeded by Elder J. B. Hunt who continued until June, 1909.

      Rev. J. W. Vallandingham was pastor from January, 1910 to 1917. A special church meeting was held on April 30, 1916 to consider the question of moving the church house to Glendale, since the Kentucky Baptist Children's Home had been located there. After full discussion the vote stood, thirty-five in favor of moving, and forty-one, opposed.

      Rev. J. T. Dougherty was pastor 1917-1919, and was succeeded by Rev. E. V. May, who led the church in the Seventy Five Million Campaign. On May 1, 1922 Rev. E. D. Davis became pastor and the church reported 344 members. Rev. J. E. Darter was pastor from 1924 to 1943. The church reported to Severn's Valley Association in 1944, 407 members, 228 baptisms, and Rev. Logan M. Thomas, pastor; in 1945, 679 members and Rev. H. Bernard Deakins, pastor; and in 1948, 594 members and 301 enrolled in Sunday School. The Kentucky Baptist Children's Home family at Glendale worship in this church. 32


      The Simpsonville Baptist Church, located in Shelby County, was constituted, April 22, 1830, with forty-three members. Elder John Dale was the first pastor and served thirteen years. The church united with the Long Run Association at its annual meeting at New Castle the following

September. In 1834, the membership of the church had increased from 43 to 177. This growth was the result of several real revival meetings. At this date the colored members numbered about eighty, who had a separate meeting house of worship, and their own pastor and deacons, but they transacted their church business under the direction of the white brethren. In 1868, there were 242 colored members, and 174 whites. About that time, the negro members requested letters to organize the Negro Baptist Church of Simpsonville.

      In 1887, the Simpsonville Church withdrew from the Long Run Association and united with the Shelby County Baptist Association, which had been organized in 1872. In 1917, under the leadership of the pastor, W. B. Harvey, an attempt was made to erect a new house of worship, but because of the conditions occasioned by the World War, the matter was deferred indefinitely. Under two succeeding pastors, O. M. Huey and M. T. Rankin, the building proposition was revived and some progress made in the thinking of the membership. Rev. E. J. Trueblood was called to the pastorate in 1921, and all plans were completed to build. The contract was let in May, 1923, ground was broken in June, and the following October the cornerstone was laid. The speakers for the laying of the cornerstone were Dr. W. O. Carver and Dr. H. W. Tribble, of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. The building was completed in June, 1924, and the dedication sermon was delivered by Rev. A. M. Parrish, pastor of the church at Taylorsville.

      The Simpsonville Church has made continued progress in the new building. At the 97th anniversary in 1927, Dr. H. W. Tribble was pastor, and the record showed 183 members at that date, and Miss Bettie Gaines had been a teacher in the Sunday school for fifty years. At the Centennial Anniversary, in 1930, the church reported 236 members and Rev. G. G. Gilcup, pastor. In 1940, the church numbered 253 members with Rev. Findley B. Edge as pastor, while in 1948 the membership had increased to 303 with Rev. Mark R. Osborn as pastor.33


      The First Church in Owensboro was constituted on Saturday before the second Sunday in May, 1835 in the Seminary building, then under the direction of Mr. George Scarborough, consisting of eight white Baptists, and eighteen colored. The names of white members were: Leonard Daniel, John Stout, George N. McKay, Mariah Daniel, Elizabeth Stout, Parmelia A. Triplett, Aagelina McKay, and Lucy Pickett. The Presbytery of recognition was composed of Elders Thomas Downs and Reuben Cottrell. After the organization of the church was completed, Elder Reuben Cottrell was called as pastor, and served until 1839. During the first five years of the church's existence no meeting house was erected, but the congregation worshipped in the court house, and in the school building, where the church was first constitued. There are no records as to the erection of the first house, except it was known to have been built of brick the latter part of 1840. In December, 1841 the church voted to give the Methodists and Presbyterians the use of the church building when not needed for the Baptist services.

      Elder J. L. Burrows was the second pastor of the Owensboro church.

He succeeded Elder Cottrell in 1839. This distinguished preacher came to Kentucky from New York, his native State, in 1836, and taught school in Shelbyville in connection with his ministry. He led in the organization of the church at Henderson, and became the first pastor, for one Sunday in the month. In March, 1839 Elder Burrows came to Owensboro and began a great meeting in the court house, which continued six weeks and resulted in over one hundred baptized into the fellowship of the First Baptist. Church. The revival spread to neighboring churches and large numbers were baptized. He continued as pastor in Owensboro until 1840, when he resigned to accept the call to the Sanson Street Baptist Church, Philadelphia, but he returned to Kentucky in 1874 to become pastor of the Broadway Baptist Church, Louisville.

      John G. Howard was pastor of the First Church, 1840-43; Alfred Taylor, 1843-44; and again 1847-48; David E. Burns, 1845; V. E. Kirtley, 1849-1851; S. L. Helm, 1851-53; R. C. Buckner, 1854-55; A. B. Smith, 1856-58; James M. Dawson, 1859; B. T. Taylor, 1860-61; A. B. Miller, 1862-64; J. C. Maple, 1865-69; and C. C. Chaplin, 1870-73; A. B. Miller later moved to Texas and was pastor at Bonham and other places. Elder R, C. Buckner also went to Texas and founded the great Buckner Orphan's Home. In 1858, the old church property was sold for $2,500, and the present location of the church was secured, and a new building was completed in 1860. During the years 1870-73, a pastor's home was purchased at a cost of $3000.00.

      T. C. Stackhouse served as pastor, 1783-77; J. S. Coleman, 1878-79; J. B. Solomon, 1880-1885; J. S. Felix 1886-1890; J. H. Boyet, 1890-92; Fred D. Hale, 1893-96; G. L. Morrill, 1896-1900; E. Pendleton Jones, 1900-1903; T. N. Compton, 1904-1906; L. B. Warren, 1907-1910; Millard A. Jenkins, 1911; E. E. Bomar, 1912-1918; W. C. Boone, 1919-1927; Robert E. Humphreys, 1927 to date. During the pastorate of Dr. J. S. Coleman, a great revival prevailed, resulting in about 150 members being added to the church. The membership increased to 1200 during the pastorate of Dr. Fred D. Hale. In 1910, during the pastoral ministration of Dr. L. B. Warren, the church numbered 1500 members. Sunday school rooms were built at a cost of approximately $9.000, while Dr. J. S. Felix was pastor.

      In 1917 during the pastorate of Dr. W. C. Boone, a great building program was put on, and a new house of worship was completed at a cost of over $200,000, and was dedicated, October 19-24, 1924. The Centennial of the church was observed, May 5-12, 1935, and the following former pastors were present and delivered inspiring messages: Millard A. Jenkins, E. Pendleton Jones, E. E. Bomar and W. C. Boone. At that time, the church numbered 1978 members. In 1948 there were 2317 members.

      The First Baptist Church has dismissed members to form other Baptist churches in Owensboro. In 1866, separate existence was granted the colored Baptist church, then under the direction of the First Church, and the property was given them. This is today designated as the Fourth Street Baptist Church. In 1896, about 500 members withdrew to form the Third Baptist Church. Several members were dismissed by the First Church in 1908 to constitute the Hall Street Church, which reported 1013 members in 1948. What was known as the Crabtree Mission, under the First Church was organized into a church in 1946, and reported 339 members

in 1948. The following churches were organized of members dismissed from the Third Baptist Church, making them the indirect decendants of the First Church: Buena Vista, 1920; Seven Hills, 1908; and Eaton Memorial, 1940.34


      The Richland Baptist Church, located in Hopkins County, was constituted on February 3, 1837, of a small group of Baptists, who were out of harmony with the anti-mission action of the Highland Association. They believed they were led of the Lord in constituting a Baptist church, in which missionary effort and benevolent institutions would have a large place. Accordingly, Elders John Bourland and Timothy Sisk were invited to assist in the organization. Timothy Sisk was the grandfather of Rev. E. G. Sisk, well known in Little Bethel Association, where he is still serving (1949). Elder John Bourland was the first pastor. A meeting house was erected in 1838 probably of logs. In May, 1840 Elder Joseph Board, and wife, Eleanor, united with the church by letter, and Brother Board was called as second pastor and served until 1854, when he was succeeded by Elder J. M. Ezell.

      Four brethren were baptized, licensed to preach, and ordained to the ministry by the Richland Church as follows: N. A. Hibbs was baptized in 1842, licensed in 1847, and ordained in July, 1855. John O'Bryan was baptized in 1842 at the age of fourteen years, licensed in September, 1855, and ordained in September, 1856 at the age of twenty-eight years, This brother organized fourteen churches in Little Bethel Association, became pastor of the Richland Church in January, 1859, and served, alternating with other preachers, for approximately 49 years. He came to the end of the way at the age of 85 years. E. B. Osborn was baptized in 1888, licensed to preach in 1898, and ordained in January, 1899. The fourth brother sent out by the Richland Church was Major Harlan Utley, who was baptized in 1891, licensed, in 1900, and ordained in 1903. After a ministry of 34 years, Brother Utley died in 1937.

      In 1840, six members were dismissed by letter to go into the organization of the Liberty Church, which later divided over the point that a faction, led by the pastor, denied that a member of a Baptist church has a right to belong to a secret order, and Free Masonry in particular. The present Liberty Church was constituted in 1883, and reported to the Little Bethel Association in 1948, 97 members, and Rev. C. R. Curtis, pastor.

      The Richland Church celebrated the One Hundredth Anniversary on May 30, 1937. The program was conducted by the pastor, R. A. Utley. The history of the church was read by Jesse Brown. The speakers of the occasion were J. S. Shadrick, T. E. Finley, George D. Park, and Hollis S. Summers. At that time, the church numbered 157 members, and in 1948 reported to the Little Bethel Association 191 members and Rev. J. W. Robinson, pastor.35


      The Baptist church at Lawrenceburg, the county seat of Anderson County, was constituted on June 23, 1834, of eighty-five brethren and sisters of the "Regular and United Baptist Denomination." After a sermon

137 by the distinguished Dr. Silas M. Noel, the church was organized with the following officers: J. P. Lancaster, moderator; William A. Hickman, clerk; Eli Penny and J. G. Wingate, deacons; and Elder J. H. Walker was called the first pastor, but declined. The church then ordained Elder T. J. Fisher to the ministry, and called him as pastor, but he refused to serve. The church had no pastor for one year and nine months, but Eli Penny acted as Moderator, and the church did not miss a business meeting during the time.

      Elder Isaac E. Duvall, the first pastor, was called in March, 1836, and served one year. In April, 1837 Elder William Vaughan became pastor and served eight years, the longest pastorate in the first century of the church's history. Two brethren were licensed to preach in 1842 - William Blair on the first Saturday in August, and Robert Rhodes Lillard, on the first Saturday in October. The church was without a pastor for one year, following the resignation of Elder William Vaughan in 1849. The records of the church for the following ten years are missing. In August, 1859 Elder R. C. Buckner, then pastor at Salvisa, visited nearby Law-renceburg, and under his leadership, the church was organized, and Elder William B. O'nan was called as pastor. The records state that Miss Mary Bowem went into the reorganization. What was involved in this reorganization is unknown to the author. Elder W. B. Smith was pastor, 1860-1863; Elder S. T. Thomas, ordained by the church, pastor 1863-1865; Elder Thomas M. Vaughan, son of Dr. William Vaughan, 1865-1870; Dr. J. M. Frost, 1870-1873; and Dr. W. P. Harvey, 1873-1877.

      Elder Thomas A. Reed became pastor in 1877, and served until 1879, when he and his wife, a former Miss Mary Coffield, went to Africa as missionaries, where the wife died. Elder Reed did not return to Africa. In a fire in Lawrenceburg in October, 1884, the records of the church from 1879 to April 1885 were destroyed. During the time Elder M. A. Simmons was pastor. Rev. W. J Williams was pastor 1886-1887; Rev. H. T. Hungerford, 1887-1889; Rev. Weston Bruner, 1889-1894; Rev. W. E. Gwatkins, 1836-1900; Rev. A. S. Pettie, 1900; and Rev. W. T. Amis, who resigned after eight months to become pastor in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Rev. George Green was called as pastor 1904, and served to 1906; Rev. H. T. Searcy, 1906-1910; Rev. S. M. McCarter, 1910-1915; and Rev. R. R. Ray, February 1915 - June 1, 1916.

      The Lawrenceburg Church has had two houses of worship. The first was a frame building located on Woodford Street, which was sold in 1852. The church worshipped in the Methodist meeting house until 1870, when the present building was completed. This house was remodeled and equipped for Sunday school work and was dedicated on July 8, 1916=. The dedicatory sermon was preached by Dr. W. D. Powell, who secured pledges to the amount of $37,223.25, the balance due on the building. Rev. Norman W. Cox was pastor from December 24, 1916 to August 4, 1918, and was followed by Rev. Walter P. Binns, who served until 1923. In May, 1921 Dr. Norman W. Cox returned for a revival meeting, which resulted in 81 members added to the church in the ten days. Dr. Cox is now pastor in Meridian, Mississippi (1949). In 1911, a Sunday School Institute was held in the church by the State Sunday School Secretary, Louis Entzminger,

April 11-16, as a result of which the Sunday school was graded, the number of the classes doubled, and the attendance almost doubled.

      The Centennial Celebration of the church was held June 23-24, 1934, Rev. E. N. Perry, pastor. The sermon Saturday was preached by Rev. W. D. Moore, a pioneer preacher in the association, who passed from this life in 1938. The Centennial sermon was delivered by Dr. Walter P. Binns, a former pastor, who became President of William Jewell College, Liberty, Missouri, in 1943. The closing sermon of the Centennial was preached by Rev. John T. Stallings, the son of Rev. W. M. Stallings, who was a former beloved pastor. Rev. Paul G. Homer became pastor in 1939 and served until 1944, when he was succeeded by Rev. T. G. Waller. In 1948, the Lawrenceburg Church reported to the Baptist Association, constituted in 1829, 542 members, and W. Levon Moore, pastor.36


      The church at Leitchfield, first called Beaver Dam Creek, was constituted, May 29, 1804, "on the principles of Salem Association, holding believer's baptism by immersion and the doctrine of election, and final perseverance of the Saints." Elders Alexander McDougal and Isaac Edwards, two pioneer preachers to Kentucky, organized the church and submitted the following:

      "Be it known to all whom it may concern that we the subscribers being here unto duly called by a number of Baptist professors in order to constitute and set apart as a church a body of Christians distinct with full authority to exercise the Gospel discipline. We have, therefore, by the authority of Jesus Christ constituted and set apart them as a church, distinct and independent of all other Christian societies to live, do, and act according to the Word of God in all wisdom and prudence in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, three persons, but one God forever, Amen." Eleven male members and ten female members went into the organization of the church, and fifteen members were added to these in the next few years. On tihe second Saturday in June following, Benum Shaw was chosen deacon, William Brown, clerk, and James Hornback, writing clerk. The following fall of 1804, the Beaver Dam Creek Church was received into the Salem Association, and in 1809, James Hornback, and Mahu Harris were appointed messengers to the same Association. In 1811, the church reported 33 members, and in 1812, 44 members. In 1815, John Morgan was church clerk, and in 1816, Owen Willis filled the same office. After the Goshen Association was constituted in 1817, the church united with that body.

      In 1826, by motion it was unanimously agreed "to erase that part of the rules of decorum, which refers to the church being constituted on the Philadelphia Confession of Faith." The dhurch unanimously agreed in 1832 to give Brother Peter Bruner "liberty to exercise a public gift in the way of the gospel among us or sister churches." On June 13, 1835, Brother Daniel Barton presented a motion to move the meeting house to another place, no doubt to the village of Leitchfield, but the motion laid over till next meeting. At the meeting July 11, the vote was taken in regard to moving the church house, but a large majority voted against

moving to Leitchfield. A committee was appointed to report about the two places, on which the church might be located. This committee reported on May 11, 1836, in favor of moving to Leitchfield, but the churcth "decided in favor of the place on Patterson's land near Philip's hole." At the business meeting the following June the church voted "to disannul what she had done at the last meeting." The following year, 1837, the Baptist church on Beaver Dam Creek constituted an "arm" on Bear Creek.

      In August, 1840, a motion was made "to try the strength of the church to see who was missionary and who was anti-missionary." This motion was out of order according to the rules of the church. The motion was then made to send a letter to Goshen Association. The majority was opposed to this motion. After that the anti-missionary party left the meeting Ihouse, leaving only seven members in the house, "who were unwilling to leave the United Baptist Church." The seven members left, after the anti-mission group went out, "concluded that they were the church and organized themselves to do business." They also agreed to send a letter to the Goshen Association. In April, 1841 the church met in the house of William E. Wortham and sent Brother B. G. Rogers "to visit the Regular Baptist Church composed of the anti-mission forces, and re¬quest from the clerk a list of those, who have left the Beaver Dam Creek Church and joined them," but the clerk refused to give the list and Brother Rogers so reported.

      In June, 1842 the church agreed to move to Leitchfield and took the name of that town. Elder John Jones was unanimously called as pastor. The names of only two pastors are given prior to the church's moving to Leitchfield. The records of the meeting in February, 1836 state: "Whereas Brother Martin Utterback, in a short time will move from this state, the church took up the matter of calling another preacher to attend them." Elder Utterback moved to Grayson County in 1818. He had long labored in the Salem Association and preached the introductory sermon before that body in 1811. He spent the last years of his ministry in Illinois. The church then called Elder Frederick Meredith, during the latter part of 1836. In February, a Brother Thomas was called as pastor, but left the church in a few months because of ill health, and was succeeded the following May by Elder Simeon Buchanan, wiho was well known in Goshen Association. In August, 1848 Elder Joshua Armstrong became pastor, and continued until 1852. About that time Elder Darnell Dowden moved to Leitchfield, and became pastor of the Baptist church there, and of some country churches where he labored about ten years. He was elected moderator of the Goshen Association in 1855 and served through the War until 1885, except four years.

      Elder Thomas W. Pierce became pastor about 1866, and continued until 1873, when he moved to Hardin County. The church records state that Elder J. H. Fullilove "was serving as pastor in 1878, and continued until January 16, 1886." Elders W. H. Williams and J. D. Jordan served one year each. Elder A. U. Boone accepted a call to the churches at Leitchfield and Smith Grove and entered upon his duties as pastor of both churches March 1, 1888, but lived at Leitchfield. In 1890, Elder

Boone resigned to give all his time to the Smith Grove Church. Elder J. C. Burkholder became pastor in May, 1890 and was succeeded in July, 1891 by Elder W. H. Williams. Elder H. F. Burns, Louisville Seminary, was pastor, 1894-1896; Elder J. W. Vallandingham, 1896-1900; Elder E. B. Stoneham, 1901 - January, 1902; Elder H. W. Williams, September 3, 1903 - September 7, 1905; Elder Benjamin Gonna way, June 26, 1906-March 10, 1910; and Elder J. T. Betts, 1911-1912. W. D. Ryland was pastor, 1913-1915; E. B. Gatlin, 1917-1918; Olus Hamilton, 1919-1921; A. C. Baker, 1922-1924; M. A. Cooper, 1925-1927; E. B. English, 1927-1929; A. B. Pierce, 1930-1934; T. E. Wortham, 1935-1940; C. J. Smyley, 1941-1943; and the present pastor, Clinton B. Coots, January 9, 1944 to the present (1949.)

      The Leitchfield Church reported to the Goshen Association in 1930, 286 members; in 1940, 346 members; and in 1948, 492 members, and 372 enrolled in the Sunday School.37


1. Spencer, John H., A History of Kentucky Baptists, Vol. 2, p. 532, 533.
2. Ibid., Vol. 2, p. 533.
3. Ibid., Vol. 2, p. 335.
4. Conway, J. A., History of Grave Creek Church; Minutes of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky, 1937, 1938.
5. Johnson, Lafayette, History of Ten Mile Baptist Church, Gallatin Co.; Spencer, John H., op. cit., Vol. 2, p. 461; Minutes of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky, 1932, 1948.
6. Chiles, H. C., History of the First Baptist Church, Barbourville, Kentucky (Manuscript).
7 Minutes of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky, 1900 (p. 26); 1901 (p. 26); 1902 (p. 37); 1903 (p. 38); 1908 (p. 55, 56); 1909 (p. 57).
8. Gladdish, Wm., "History of Providence Baptist Church, Warren County, Ky., 1804-1907," Minutes of Warren Association of Baptists, 1907, p. 25-29.
9. Taylor, James P., History of Sandy Creek Church.
10. Henry, J. S., "Short History of Salem Church, Livingston County, Kentucky," Minutes of Ohio River Baptist Association, 1905, p. 23-29; Minutes of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky, 1947, 1948.
11. Spencer, John H., op. cit., Vol. 2, p. 311; Minutes of the General Association of Baptists in Kentucky, 1947, 1948.
12. Historical material furnished by Dr. E. L. Skiles, pastor.
13. History of Highland Church, furnished by H. M. Griggs, Uniontown, Kentucky.
14. Bennett, J. A., Sketch History of Buck Creek Church.
15. Lyne, T. N., "History of New Union Church," Minutes of Bethel Baptist Association, 1889, p. 20.
16. Bennett, J. A., Sketch History of Walton's Creek Church.
17. Kimbrough, B. T., The History of the Walnut Street Baptist Church, Louisville, Kentucky.
18. McChesney, H. V., Early Minutes of First Baptist Church; State Journal, Frankfort, Aug. 19, 1936; late material prepared by A. Douglas Estill, church historian.
19. Bowling Green Church, by Dr. Jerome O. Williams.
20. Meacham, Chas. M., A History of Christian Co., Ky., p. 303-306; "History of the First Baptist Church, Hopkinsville, Kentucky", Minutes of Christian County Baptist Association, 1943, p. 19-22.
21. White, John, History of the Paris Church, 1818-1948; "Paris Church Celebrated its 130th Anniversary in February", The Western Recorder, March 18, 1948, p. 9.
22. Shield, C. P., "History of Russellville United Baptist Church," Minutes of Bethel Association, 1895, p. 17-20; Church Directory, 1933.
23. Terry, E. B., Glasgow Baptist Church; one hundredth Anniversary, 1818-1918; The Glasgow Baptist Church, Glasgow, Kentucky, 1943.
24. Ford, S. H., "History of Kentucky Baptists", The Christian Repository, July, 1856, p. 392.
25. Russell, Ward, Life in the Blue Grass, 1783-1933, p. 78, 79, 153.
26. Minutes of Elkhorn Baptist Association, 1827, p. 2, 6; Spencer, John H., op. cit., Vol. 2, p. 28-30.
27. Historical material furnished by Dr. George Ragland, pastor.
28. "Records of Harmony Church, 1824-1948."
29. Spencer, John H., op. cit., Vol. 2, p. 648.
30. "First Church of Henderson has Centennial," The Western Recorder, Oct. 12, 1939, p. 16; Lockett, Eva, "A Brief History of First Church of Henderson," The Western Recorder, Oct. 26, 1939.
31. Wilson, C. H., History of New Bethel.
32. Cash, O. C., Gilead Baptist Church located near Glendale, Hardin County, Kentucky, Copy of Clerk's Record, from March 17, 1824, date of Organization, to July 1849, and Copy of "Historical Sketch" of first Hundred Years, Prepared in 1924, by W. T. Overall, James Shacklette, M. Geo. Moore, Tulsa, Okla., 1947.
33. Historical material on Simpsonville Church furnished by Mr. J. C. Tichenor, Moderator, Shelby County Association.
34. Rone, Wendell H., A History of the Daviess-McLean Baptist Association in Kentucky, p. 91-98.
35. Brown, Jesse, History of Richland Church.
36. McCarter, S. M., History of Lawrenceburg Church, re-written and revised by Dr. W. P. Binns.
37. Record of First Baptist Church, Leitchfield, furnished by C. B. Coots, pastor.


[From Frank M. Masters, A History of Baptists in Kentucky, 1953, pp. 97-140. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]

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