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History of Wilmington Baptist Church
Kenton County, Kentucky
By O. P. Mann, 1879

      The History of this Church is obtained from tradition and the Church record. The information from these sources are very meager.

      Wilmington Church was constituted June 2d, 1804, with about six or eight members (Wm. Stephens, Samuel Bryant and wife, and Eld. Thos. Griffin, it is supposed were of the number), on Licking River a short distance below where Morning View now stands. The name of the Church was taken from the County seat of Campbell Co., which was named Wilmington, and located at the above named place. It is supposed that Eld. Thos. Griffin was the first pastor, and remained so until his death.

      During his pastorate the Church moved up the river some where near Griffin's Ford. Wilmington Church joined the North Bend Association at its Second Annual Session, and remained a member of that body until she withdrew to go into the constitution of the Campbell County Association, in which relation she has remained ever since.

      Wm. Gosney succeeded Griffin in the pastorate. It is not known how long he served the Church. At the close of his pastorate the Church numbered nine members. The third pastor was Abernathy, who served two years, during which time the Church increased to twenty members.

      Wm. Hume was fourth pastor and remained so until 1840. During the two first years of his labors he became very much discouraged. He came to the Church at her regular meeting in 1828, with the determination to resign the charge of the Church. At this meeting three young persons united with the Church, which revived Hume so that he forgot to resign. From this time for one year the Church enjoyed a revival, and the membership increased to seventy-two.

      At the May meeting 1833, Alfred Gosney was licensed to preach. At the February meeting 1841, the Church agreed to meet in the School-house near Fiskburg. The Church at this time was without a pastor, but kept up her regular meetings, and when no minister was present, engaged in singing and prayer. At June meeting, 1841, the old house was sold for twenty dollars and fifty cents.

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     August 1842, the Church received a deed for one acre of land from W. D. Griffin, and for one-half acre from A. A. Martin. In May 1842, James Vickers was chosen pastor, and remained for three years. September 1842, Martin Lummis was licensed to preach. November 28th, 1843, the Church agreed to build a house of worship, which is standing at the present time. December, 1845, James Spilman was chosen pastor, and served the Church four years.

     Fourth Saturday in March, 1848, Martin Lummis was ordained to the Gospel Ministry. He is yet living, and has been a useful and faithful herald of the cross. Fourth Saturday in February, 1849, A. W. Mullins was licensed to preach, and was ordained in November, of the same year. He became eminently successful, was Moderator of the Campbell County Association, filled some important positions, and died in the full vigor of manhood, September 13th, 1870.

     January meeting, 1850, letters of dismission were granted to twenty members, who desired to go into the organization of a Church at Crittenden, Grant Co. Fourth Saturday in March, 1857, James Cornelius was licensed to preach, same day, Martin Lummis and A. W. Mullins were chosen pastors, and served until July, 1853. Wm. Cleneland was then called, and served one year. December, 1854, A. W. Mullins was chosen pastor, and served until 1858. Bro. Lummis was then chosen pastor, and served two years, when Bro. James Spilman took charge of the Church for one year. A. W. Mullins was again chosen, and served the Church for three years.

     Fourth Saturday in September, 1861, sixteen members were granted letters, for the purpose of organizing Liberty Church, Grant County.

     Fourth Saturday in September, 1863, N. H. Carlisle and C. J. Bagby were licensed to preach.

     December, 1864, M. Lummis was chosen pastor for one year. At the close of the year he was recalled, and Brethern Carlisle and Bagby united to assist him. Fourth Saturday in October, 1866, Breth. Bagby and Carlisle were ordained to the Gospel Ministry. Bro. Carlisle entered the work of the Ministry with more than ordinary promise, but from some cause unknown to the writer, is not, at present, actively engaged.

C. J. Bagby has become a useful and faithful preacher, is very successful in winning souls to Christ, being in the prime of life he bids fair to add many more stars to his crown.

     December, 1866, A. W. Mullins was chosen pastor, and served two years. December, 1868, C. J. Bagby and N. H. Carlisle were called to the charge of the Church. Fourth Saturday in November, 1869, J. M. Johnson licensed to preach. May, 1870, M. M. Arnold was chosen pastor, and served until the close of 1871. The Church at her July meeting, 1871, resolved to build a new house of worship. December, 1871, C. J. Bagby took charge of the Church, and served

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for three years. In 1872, the present house of worship was built. N. H. Carlisle served as pastor for the year 1875. At the December meeting, 1875, L. Johnson was called to the pastorate, and served three years. December, 1878, our present pastor, Thomas Spilman was called

     The writer can not give an account of the various, revival meetings, and other incidents of interest connected with this Church, for the different clerks have failed to record them.

     The present prospect of Wilmington Church is rather gloomy, perhaps caused by the members neglecting the altar of prayer, and engaging in the world's vanities, and the neglect of the Church to keep up the line of discipline. But, still the gloom is dispersed, when we remember, we have a membership from the best citizens, and have more moral power than all other institutions of the neighborhood. We pray that God's blessing may be in the future as in the past, with her in all her work.
     O. P. Mann.


[From Campbell County Baptist Association Minutes, 1879, pp. 10-12. This document is from the Northern Kentucky Baptist Association office, Erlanger. - Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]


[The following information is from the Bryan Station Baptist Churchbook, Fayette County, KY, July, 1808.]
     On receiving a letter from the Baptist Church at Wilmington, Campbell County respecting Martha Smith and a Member with us who was Excluded for Joining the Methodist Society which is Correct and that she now wishes to Join Sd. Church, our Clerk is directed to write to Sd. Church to let her know that if she will Signifie to us her recantation Either personally of by a letter we can then restore her & Send her a letter of Dismission. [Note: Kenton County had not been established at that date.]


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