Friendship Baptist

Wilkes County
Org 1831
Photography by Scott MacInnis

Friendship Baptist and its picturesque, intriguing , 19th century grave yard rests alone on a grassy knoll set back from a winding country road. The church and cemetery rise alone out of the field with no nearby neighbors. There is no paved drive or dirt tracks to this gaunt but still proud church. There are no signs of visitors, no dead flowers on graves, no outside signs of painting or maintenance of any kind in recent years. But, the structure is still sound, the grounds clear of weeds and debris, the cemetery in remarkably though well-worn condition, and one gets the feeling it is still loved by someone.

Friendship Church is listed as “presently inactive.” The interior is in relatively good shape, has its original lovely primitive pews, the windows and doors are sound, there are obvious signs of cleaning and attention and, clearly, the church, grounds and cemetery are being cared for by someone.

Because it has been inactive for some time, records concerning its past are sketchy. We know that the church began as an arm of Clark’s Station Baptist in January, 1826 and that on May 7, 1831 it was constituted with 33 members, 12 of whom were black. So, clearly it was a very early church. The size and quality of the present structure indicate that it did at one time prosper. The last known Deacon from the mid 1970’s was Lonnie C. Moon.

We hope to be able to expand our commentary on Friendship Baptist in the future. It is certainly worth time and attention as an incredibly preserved historic rural church.