The original church was in 1850 of hand hewn logs and was located approximately at the junction of county roads S119 and 81. The church served the entire community, whites and their black slaves, with both groups included in the membership. In 1861 the Civil War descended upon the land with all its attendant hardships. The church sometimes served as shelter and campground for the soldiers, particularly during the winter months. After the war the lives of the people changed drastically and the community adjusted as well as they could. The old church still served as a place of worship and community but finally fell into disuse in the 1880’s.
The existing church was then erected on the site of the present cemetery which had been established in 1870. The site was chosen because it was the highest ground in the territory suitable for burials without groundwater problems. In the late 1800’s the cemetery property was under the ownership of Clarence D. Brown who donated an acres to “G.W. Riley, J.W. Calhoun and others, their heirs and assigns” and provided the cemetery henceforth would be known as the Calhoun Cemetery. Shortly thereafter plans were made for a new church which was completed in the latter part of 1900. The deed for the new church specified that the property would be used for a church but the timber would remain the property of the owner, Clarence Brown, and that the name of the church would be forever that selected by Mr. Brown i.e. Christ Church. Mr. Brown was obviously a shrewd negotiator.
The church has changed very little over the years. The exterior siding was covered with asbestos shingles but the interior is virtually intact. A beautiful testament to local building skills.
The church was designed so that the interior could be separated into classrooms by drawing burlap curtains hung on strong wires stretched from wall to wall.
Low tech air conditioning for over 100 years. Some things don’t change.
It may not look like it but this is high ground for miles around and the original reason for the siting of the cemetery.
The Calhoun’s were obviously people of means. The is an extraordinary example of late 19th century iron work . The oldest interment in the plot and in the cemetery is that of Elefair Metts Calhoun who died in 1873.
Let us cross over the river and rest in the shade of the trees.
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