Greenbrier General Baptist Church History
Aerial view of Greenbrier General Baptist Church and Cemetery
Contributed by Jim Grace.
History by Anna Mae Jones and Patsy J. Dunn
Times were primitive in 1858. People who lived in this area traveled dirt roads. Mode of travel was horse drawn carriage or horse back. They used wood or coal for heating the homes and churches. Water supply was taken from wells or springs.
These people were not poor, in fact most of them owned lots of land. They were intelligent people. They were great farmers and operated logging businesses (saw mills). There were very few stores. These people loved the land. They had a great desire to build a meeting house, a house to worship the Lord. This is what they did.
February 8, 1858, they organized this place which they dreamed and planned for. This place was named Greenbrier Baptist Church. The church joined the New Harmony Association.
Elder D.G. Craig was the first pastor of this church. First moderator, Elder Brachett; first clerk pro-tem, Bro. J.M. More; first permanent clerk, Bro. John Jenkins; first deacon, M.K. Walker. There were 13 charter members.
- D.G. Craig
- John Jenkins
- A. More
- D. Mays
- Joe R. Williams
- M.K. Walker
- Sis R. Shelton
- Gracy Jenkins
- T. May
- M.A. Shelton
- Matilda Caroline Walker
- T.J. Craig
- Judy Ann Shutt
The church passed a resolution that the regular meeting day of church should be on Saturday before the first Lord's day each month. The Lord's Supper should be administered on the first Sunday in April 1858.
This church building was located approximately 11 miles south of Greenville, KY, on Matlie Branch, a short distance from where the present church stands. Very little was known about this church building.
The above mentioned church building was destroyed by fire in late 1870s or early 1880s. Church services were held in Everett school building four to six years until present church was erected.
A member of this church said an older relative took her as a child to the first church site. She saw remains of the structure which were large hand hewn logs, which had been put together with round pegs and square nails.
September 19, 1885, B.S. Duvall and wife, Mary C. Duvall, deeded a parcel of land located approximately 11 miles south of Greenville, KY, to Greenbrier General Baptist Church to build a meeting house, a church for the purpose of worshiping the Lord.
Construction began immediately. The contractor is believed to be Jess Turner and members helped. The pillars that supported the structure were large sandstones which were hand cut. The timber used in building this structure were hand cut and planed. Membership grew rapidly.
This church has had annual homecomings on the fourth Sunday in May since 1914.
In 1917 the ladies of the church organized an egg club. They would donate a certain amount of eggs to be sold to purchase items for the church. Over a period of years, they purchased an organ and oil lamps for the church. In 1927 a choir loft was added to present structure. In 1943 the road to the church was first rocked (or graveled). In 1959 the road was blacktopped (paved). In 1953 the church was wired for electricity by Habra Dixon and son Donald. The first electric bill paid by the church was $1.50.
At this time the church is very much as it was in 1927. The interior walls are still the original hand planed boards. It now has solid foundation.
Most of the church membership have died. There are 21 members on the roll, eight active members.
On May 4th, the annual homecoming and annual revival, the church is filled with descendants of past members.
Updated November 17, 2015