sketch of Mountain Creek Church.
Creek Baptist Church prior to Feb.
Creek Baptist Church rebuilt after a fire
destroyed the 165 yr old building, Feb.
Read at the
dedication of the Sunday School Annex on June 29,
by: Ernest C. McCown, Church
The first recorded minutes of
Mountain Creek church are dated Oct 4, 1798 but there is
evidence that the church was organized by 1789 or
perhaps a few years earlier. At first Mountain Creek
Church was established as an "arm" of Shockley's Ferry
Church, but in Feb. 1812 it was formally organized as an
independent church. At this time the name was changed
from the Mountain Creek meeting house to Bethesda
Baptist Church. In 1869 the name was changed back to
Mountain Creek, probably because the Methodist had a
nearby church with a similar name.
There have been four Church buildings. The first was
a log building which stood about three hundred yards to
the rear of the
building near the old cemetery. The second stood about
where our Sunday School rooms are now. It was also a log
building. The third was a frame building which was just
in front of the site of the present school house. The
fourth building is the present one. Erected in 1870 by
Preistly Masters at a cost of $1550. Three times this
building has been altered and improved, including the
recent addition of eight Sunday School rooms.
In looking over the early records we find many
familiar names among the founders of the church and
members and deacons in there first few years. Among
these names are, Burriss, Chamblee, Davis, McGregor,
Watson, Chastain, Hembree, Armstrong, and Stevenson and
others. The Halls, Masters, McCowns and McGills came
only a few years later.
Mountain Creek along with the other early Baptist
churches was noted for it's strict discipline. Members
were dealt with sternly for minor infractions of church
rules. One man was churched for cheating a neighbor in a
horse trade. Another was excluded for charging a brother
the exorbitant price of sixty cents a bushel for corn.
One was excluded for playing baseball. (There were
fanatics even then)
Creek was involved in the mission controversy which
rocked the Baptist denomination in the first half of the
nineteenth century. In 1823 Cooper Bennett who had been
pastor since the beginning was dismissed for the then
heretical doctrine of foreign missions. He was never
formally re-elected pastor, but in his extreme old age
he preached from this chair with great force and
effectiveness. The mission controversy raged for quite a
while. In 1838 Mountain Creek along with a number of
other churches withdrew from the Saluda Association,
because the association had after long controversy
joined the State Baptist Convention which was
missionary. But after two years the church voted to
return to the Saluda Association. Some of the
anti-missionary or Hard shells withdrew but gradually
drifted back. Since then there has been no serious
division in the church although everything has not
always been unanimous.
In Memory of
Mrs. Ernest C.
Until the 1870's negroes were members at Mountain
Creek Church. Generally they were very devoted and well
thought of by their while brethren although they were
slaves. But soon after they were freed they began to
drift away. Some of the older ones died as members of
Early church gave the pastors wheat, corn and other
produce but the first recorded salary was paid to Rev.
Baxter Hays in 1867. The salary was $40. Per year.
The church had pastors deacons and church clerks from
the beginning but not until 1847 did it have a
treasurer. Sunday school and WMU aroused opposition from
some of the old timers as being unauthorized by the
Three pastors deserve notice because of length of
service. Cooper Bennett served 34 years, W.B. Hawkins 20
years and Baxter Hays 17 years. Cooper Bennett's service
Five ministers of the gospel have been ordained by
Mountain Creek. In the order named they were Jacob
Burriss, Asa Avery, R.H. Burriss. John Shaw and Frank
Through the years the church has made steady progress
in membership and in service of the Lord. There has been
no sensational growth, but most of the time the
promotion of Christianity has gone steadily