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Wabash County, Illinois




The first Christian Church in Wabash county, Illinois was organized in the year 1816, on the east bank of Crawfish creek, under the spreading branches of a white oak tree on what is known as the Eli Wood Tract of Land.  The tree is still standing and vigorous to this date.  The organization was effected under the direction of Elder James Poole and William Kinkade.  This was a central place between Barney’s Prairie and Timber Settlement.

This was also the first church of the old Christian order in the county.  There is in the possession of the church a very complete and satisfactory record of names, organization, church meetings, church discipline, etc, from the beginning to the present time.  Their discipline shows a great reverence for the Word of God, and a commendable determination to square their lives by the divine rule.  The Barney’s Prairie Church has been the source of Christian Churches in Wabash county,-as, in the organization of almost every other, they have drawn upon her for members.  Some of the charter members are:

        Ballard, Jerry and wife       

        Barney, Mrs.

        Brown, Mrs. Wm.

        Chaffee, Olive and Hannah

        Couch, Mrs. Levi

        Courter, William and Cynthia (Chaffee)

        Fordyce, James (first clerk) and Susan

        Gard, Seth (the first elder) and Mary

        Higgins, Mrs. John

        Higgins, Mrs. Ransom

        Ingraham, Philo and William

        Keen, Ira

        Keen, Peter and Jemima and Daniel their son, of sainted memory

        Leafy, Samuel

        Litherland, George and Catharine [Courter]

        McNair, Charles W. and Charlotte

        Pixley, Job and wife

        Pool, James and Angelina

        Preston, Joseph and Abigail

        Putnam, Ebner

        Putnam, Trifosa

        Shadle, John and Henry                   

        Shadle, Jacob and wife

        Taylor, Therim

        Wood, Joseph (Sen.), (the first deacon) and Leah (nee Greathouse)

        Wood, Priscilla [Greathouse]

        In 1819 the record shows a membership of 71; in 1823 of 103; showing a steady and healthy growth.

From ‘History of Edwards, Lawrence and Wabash Counties, Illinois, 1883,  page 187
Published by J.L. McDonough & Co., Philadelpha
Submitted by Dawn Daddario



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