In the 1830s, a church was erected and named Rocky Mount, but in 1838, a division in the Georgia Baptist Association caused members of this original church to go their separate ways. In 1848, eight members of the original church formed Mt. Horeb in former Dooly County, which became Worth County in 1853. The first house of worship was a log house on the banks of the Flint River in a community called Pindertown along the stageroad that connected Milledgeville to Tallahassee.
Just before the Civil War, the congregation of Mt. Horeb Baptist had grown to 160 members, but after the war, their structure burned and the future was unclear for the church. Until 1868 when Mrs. Celia Evelyn Sutton Ross Buckalew donated land near Abrams Creek for the church to be rebuilt as a memorial to her late husband James F. Buckalew. By October 1868, they had a new church at the new site where it still stands today.
But more challenges lie ahead for the congregation when an outbreak of Hemorrhagic Fever caused by mosquitoes and poor drinking water caused many to leave the area. Around 1902, church services ceased and the building and cemetery began to deteriorate for several years. In 1914, Mrs. Nettie Hall Woolard and Mr. Robert M. Deariso called the descendants of the original members together, and the group decided to meet annually on the fourth Sunday in August. Deariso, the grandson of Mrs. Buckalew re-recorded the deed on September 8, 1915, as a matter of public record. In more recent years the tradition has been carried on with an annual meeting at the church for worship and cleaning. According to
According to Mrs. Nel Thompson, a descendant of the church founders, “Mt. Horeb Church looks much the same today as it did in its glory days. We sit in the same pews our ancestors used and hear the same words of faith preached from the same pulpit they did. People with family names that appear in the records of Rocky Mount, Old Mt. Horeb, and Mt. Horeb Churches join together with the ghosts of the past on every fourth Sunday in August in the fellowship of ‘love to the cause of Christ.”
The old chapel sits atop a crude stone foundation- rocks which were likely brought in from the surrounding fields or creek. Elevating the church building like this would provide ventilation underneath the structure on hot days and protection from water rot and critters.
If you look closely, you'll notice that young trees are growing up along the middle tomb. Before long, those small trees will be big ones that will likely damage the tomb if they aren't removed.
The windows are boarded up to protect the building from damage so the interior is difficult to photograph, but in this image, you can see the spartan sanctuary that has served this congregation for so long. No frills, paint, or adornments, this place looks much like it did many years ago when the church was first built.
We are not sure if these pews are originals are recreations- but either way, they pay homage to the simple style of worship that has been held here for generations.
Pvt. Michael Washington Deariso was born June 26, 1827 in Houston Coumty, Georgia and died December 20, 1899. He was married to Martha Jane Ross (1839-1912). He served in Company G, 14th Georgia Infantry and surrendered at Appomattox Court House, Virginia on April 9, 1865. He died of Typhoid Fever.
Celia Emmeline Sutton Buckalew was bon February 20, 1816 and died May 27, 1895. Her first husband was John C. Ross (1814-1854). Her second husband, James F. Buckalew (1814-1864) was in the 59th Georgia Infantry, Company F and died of disease at Richmond, Virginia. A newspaper report from July 1864, stated contributions received at Floyd House Hospital from Ladies’ Soldiers Relief Society from Mrs. C. E. Buckalew: 4 lbs butter, 1 ham, 1 loaf bread.
Henry R. Joiner was born February 10, 1829 and died February 12, 1875. He married Margaret A. Ross October 5, 1854. He served in the 59th Georgia Infantry and surrendered at the Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865.
Dudley C. Gleaton was born September 19, 1842 in Dooly County, Georgia and died October 18, 1885. He married Catherine Beatrice Tison (1849-1908) in 1866. He served as a Pvt. in the 14th Georgia Infantry, CSA. He was discharged in 1862. In October 1861 he was on disability.
Temperance Sarilda Cox Pearce was born November 29, 1832 and died October 21, 1881. She married first, David Bryant Gaughf (1836-1865) who died in the Civil War at Richmond, Henrico County, Virginia. She married second, Stephen W. Pearce on August 26, 1866. He was sheriff of Worth County, 1856-1858.
Elizabeth Tanner Vines was born in Crawford County, Georgia on August 8, 1820 and died in Worth County September 19, 1913. She was the daughter of Lewis Tanner (1780-1842) and Sarah Jackson (1784-1879). Elizabeth was buried next to her husband, Hiram W. Vines (1815-1893). They were married in 1837.
Sarah Willie Kemp Hall was born July 26, 1862 and died October 25, 1883. She was the wife of Dr. Warren Jackson Hall (1853-1938). She apparently died in childbirth. Their infant son, born October 25, 1883 and died November 12, 1883, is also buried at the Mt. Horeb Cemetery.
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Did they become Baptist or Primitive Baptist??
It appears from the photos that they may have been an Old Line Primitive Baptist Church. Would be interested to know.