The village of Penfield owes its origin to Mercer University that was located there in 1833. It was begun as a labor school under the supervision of the Baptist Church. The school prospered and attracted a number of prominent families, most of whom were connected with the Baptist Church. A few Presbyterian families, represented by the Boswell family and others, moved into Penfield in the mid 19th century and began to worship under the Presbyterian doctrine. The Penfield Presbyterians were served initially by the visiting pastor who preached on Sunday night in Penfield in private homes and sometimes in the Baptist sanctuary. Impelled by a desire to have preaching more often and to enable their children to worship in their own sanctuary, the Penfield Presbyterians determined to build their own house of worship.
The present church was erected in the spring of 1876 at a cost of $1,100. One is struck by the design and the architecture of the sanctuary……….a combination of brick, Gothic arches and elaborate steeple. Not very common for rural Georgia churches of the time. The church added some new pews and some chairs around the turn of the century but little else has been changed, other than two of windows have been dedicated to the memory of founder Johnson Boswell and Eliza Cheney Boswell. Still going strong for over 125 years.
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