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History of Old
Richmond Baptist Church, Swan Quarter, NC; 1871-1976
Information obtained from Fred Green & older members and recorded by Archie Green
105 YEARS OLD
[The first 6 paragraphs were faded in places and difficult to read.]
All individuals living in such
communities as Green Hill, Maple Town, California, Lake Comfort and Swan
Quarter attended services at a church located in a community often referred to
as "Over the Quarter". Old Richmond Baptist Church and other churches
developed from this church that served those communities.
Old Richmond Baptist Church was founded in 1871 by the late Rev. Fred Long from the community of Fairfield, N.C. The church was and ______ is located in a small community called Green Hill 8? miles east of Swan Quarter on highway 264. The first church was destroyed to make room for the new church which sits next to the site of the old church. During Rev. Long's period as pastor until his death, Eddie Lovick served as deacon and Sigmond? Green served as secretary.
In the late part of the 1800s the late Rev. Sam Spencer became pastor of the church and served until the early 1900s. Fred Green became secretary of the church in 1919? and served until 1973. During the 1900s the church had several other ministers to serve as pastor.
In 1920 the late Sam Price from Elizabeth City became pastor of the church and served until 1923. During 1923 the late Rev. Ben Carr? from Bayboro became pastor of the church. Rev. Carr? served the church until 1928.
The church was then served by the late Rev. Henderson Gibbs from the community of Sladesville during the years 1928 to 1931.
In 1931 the late Andrew Mackey, another Hyde Countian from the town of Engelhard, served as pastor. Garfield Cooper served as chief deacon of the church. Rev. Mackey served as pastor for eight years.
After Rev. A. Mackey's term as pastor in 1939, the late Rev. Abel Fulford of Swan Quarter served the church longer than any pastor before him. He served the church faithfully until his health failed. Deacons during Rev. Fulford's period were: Garfield Cooper, Warren Spencer, Dennis Selby, and Edward Whitaker. In the late 1950's Rev. Fulford gave up the position because of his failing health.
In 1957 Rev. William Bembry from Edenton became pastor. As the year went on the church gained more and more members. The church was six deacons: Garfield Cooper, Warren Spencer, Dennis Selby, Edward Whitaker, Thomas Spencer and W.A. Whitfield. During Rev. Bembry's period as pastor, the drive for a new church began. The members felt that the old church was too large and would cost too much to renovate. In December 1962 the members lost one of the church leaders. Deacon Warren Spencer died and in June 1963 another leader was lost, Deacon Dennis Selby. Two fine leaders gone! Left with the job of building a new church the members strived on.
In the mid-60's the church received a new leader. Rev. Harvy Midgett from Belhaven became pastor in 1965 and now remains serving the church as pastor. During this period, the members listed another leader of the church. Deacon Garfield Cooper died August 10, 1968.
Accepting the fact the they had lost some of their leaders, the members strived on under the guidance of Rev. H. Midgette and a new leader. The new church was started and completed in 196_. Although the church had lost some of its fine leaders, it gained another. The leader was not to be someone new to the church nor to the members of the church. The new leader was to be a person already affiliated with the church, a man who had served the church for many years in one position. That new leader was Fred Green. Fred Green became secretary in 1919 and served in that position until 1973 when he resigned to become a higher leader of the church. Deacon Fred Green is the oldest active member of the church and can still recall the days of the past years. He is 84 years old. Preston Reddin of Swan Quarter, Green Hiill, is the oldest member of the church. He is 100 years old.
WOMEN OF THE CHURCH
During the 105 years of the establishment of the
church, the men were not the only leaders of religion. There were women
who helped to build the foundation of this institution. Yes, the men had
to have the help of the women to set the walls of this institution singing
Some of the members of the church can remember back to the 1800's when Maggie Topping served as the deaconess of the church under the late Rev. Sam Spencer who was the second pastor of the church. Maggie Topping was remembered as the first and oldest deaconess of the church. Lucy Ready died while Rev. Abel Fulford, Sr. served as pastor. Addie Green became deaconess of the church after Mrs. Ready and still holds the position along with Lettuce A. Lucas.
And of course we cannot forget the lady who did so much for the church Sunday School as well as the church itself. The write can even remember this person because she taught him in Sunday School when he was Younger--Mrs. Fannie Spencer. She can be remembered by all the younger children because she made the Sunday School lessons enjoyable. Fannie Spencer's classes always strived to show the adult class that the young children could compete against them. She was a great fund raiser. Although her class consisted of small children, they would raise more money than the other classes. She allowed and encouraged all the children to participate in church programs. Mrs. Spencer worked in the church while Rev. Andrew Mackey, Abel Fulford and Rev. Bembry were pastors of the church.
Today the church has 55 male members and 75 female members. The officers of the church are:
Pastor - Rev. H.B. Midgette
Deacons: Fred Green, Chief; W.A. Whitfield, Thomas Spencer, Edward Whitaker
Trustees: Elisha Green, Chief; Gortha Green, James T. Peterson
Secretary: Hettie Merrick
Asst. Secretary: Willie G. Green
Deaconess: Addie Green, Lettuce Ann Lucas
Ushers: Mary Mann, Chief; Elishann Murray, Learnetya Green, Florence Topping
Source: Microfilm #053.01004 from the North Carolina Dept. of Archives & History, Raleigh, NC.
© 2018 Kay Midgett Sheppard