LONGSTREET CHURCH PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
By A.M. Patterson
Transcribed by Darryl Black
Posted July 15, 2005 by Myrtle Bridges
Long Street Presbyterian Church, in active since 1923, is located on the old Yadkin Road in the Fort Bragg
Reservation, about twelve miles west of Fayetteville. Presumable it was named for the nearby section of
Yadkin Road which is said to have been called the long street. The name of the church was sometimes spelled
as one word, "Longstreet." The church became inactive when the federal government condemned the land for
use as a military post and forced the members of the congregation to move out. The church building and the
cemetery are maintained by the Army. Services and homecomings are still held on occasion.
As was so often the case elsewhere in North Carolina, the Rev. Hugh McAden was the first Presbyterian
minister known to have preached in that Highland Scot community. He recorded in his journal that on
January 28, 1756, he "rode up to Alexander McKay's on the Yadkin Road; Thursday, preached to a small
congregation who were very much obliged to me for coming, and highly pleased with my discourse, though alas,
I am afraid it was all feigned and hypocritical." Be that as it may, the little congregation grew in number
and in spirit. First known as McKay's, it soon became Long Street.
When McAden returned to Pennsylvania, he persuaded his friend, the Rev. James Campbell to go to North
Carolina and preach to the Highlanders who so desperately needed his services. Campbell agreed and moved
to Cumberland County in 1757. In October, 1758, the ruling elders of Long Street, Barbecue (sie), and
Bluff Churches called Mr. Campbell to preach and the three congregations jointly guaranteed him a salary
of one hundred pounds per annum. At that time the Long Street elders were Malcolm Smith, Archibald Ray
and Archibald McKay. Mr. Campbell continued to serve the three churches until 1776. As the Resolution
became more inevitable, he encountered increasing opposition from some of his parishioners because he
championed the colonists cause and in order to avoid trouble he resigned and moved to Guilford County.
Eventually he returned to his home near Bluff, but apparently he never preached again.
In 1770 Mr. Campbell was joined by the Rev. John McLeod, a native of Scotland and unlike Mr. Campbell, an
outspoken Loyalist. He became chaplain of the Highland Regiment which fought and lost at Moore's Creek
Bridge. Captured and imprisoned, he was eventually released to return to Scotland. He was never heard
of again and presumably he was lost at sea.
Ministers who followed the Rev. James Campbell and John McLeod included Dougald Crawford, Angus McDiarmid,
Colin Lindsey, Colin McIver, Evander McNair, Neill McKay (great grandson of Alexander), James McQueen,
David Fairley who served the church for more than forty years, and R.A. McLeod, last of the eleven ministers
of the church which existed for 167 years. The first six ministers were born in Scotland and all the others
were of Scottish descent. Mr. McLeod wrote the fine little history, Long Street Church, 1756-1923. From
it came much of the information contained herein.
The first church, built of logs, was erected in 1766 near the present church. The second church was
constructed early in the nineteenth and was also near the present site. It was described as a frame
building, commodious but plain and unattractive. The third and present building was completed in 1847.
It was architecturally one of the more distinctive of the country Presbyterian churches built in the
nineteenth century in southeastern North Carolina. It has been entered in the National Register of
Long Street was the mother church of Cypress, Galatia and Sandy Grove (also in Fort Bragg and inactive)
churches. The church also contributed to the charter membership of at least six other churches in the
area. The federal government paid slightly more than $5,000 for the church property. Most of the money
was used to establish a Davidson College endowment, known as the "Long Street Ministerial Study Fund."
There are men and women of honor and success in the legal profession, the medical profession, in educational
institutions, in business, in agricultural pursuits, in ministry and among missionaries in foreign fields
who trace their ancestral home to Long Street. The real history of this church will never be fully known
until He who keeps a perfect record opens the Book of which His records are kept.
Longstreet Presbyterian Church Built in 1845
The Fayetteville Observer-Times, 1990 May 18
Almost three centuries ago, the land which is now the Fort Bragg military installation was the home of
Highland Scot farmers. The earliest recorded history of the permanent settlement was 1729. Longstreet
Presbyterian Church was founded in 1756, and it became the center of local religious activities.
The current structure, located on Longstreet (names after the church), is approximately eight miles from
the post. When the land was purchased by the U.S. government in 1917, Army officials promised to preserve
this historic landmark which was built in 1845 by the descendants of the Scottish immigrants who had settled
in the area. In honor of this promise, Longstreet Presbyterian Church has been maintained and preserved by
Post Engineers and Civil Service employees of Fort Bragg ever since.
In an effort to prevent vandalism, post engineers fenced in the churchyard, padlocked the building and gates
and posted notices sighting the seriousness of vandalizing National Historic Landmarks. The church grounds
are guarded by police patrols, and additional lighting has been installed. Grills were placed over doors
The Greek Revival frame building can seat a congregation of several hundred. Quality workmanship in the
construction of Longstreet Presbyterian Church is unquestionable, considering the good condition of the
building today. The building has been supported by hand-hewn timbers for more than 100 years.
Quality craftsmanship was put into the construction of the church, which is evidenced by the use of wooden
pins and dove-tail joints as opposed to nails. The front of the building features a Palladian window
directly in the center, with two entrances on either side- one used by men and the other used by women.
The pulpit is located inside under the window. As one entered the church, he was facing the congregation,
and in this way, everyone knew who arrived late for services.
Four large white columns support the porch. Wide flat boards were used on the front of the building which
sports clapboard sides. Special shutters were made for the building in 1988. The shutters appear to be
authentic and blend well with the architectural design of the building. Several Longstreet descendants
donated the shutters.
A steep wooden staircase located near the rear of the sanctuary leads to the church balcony.
A stone-walled cemetery accompanies Longstreet Presbyterian Church, in which members of the congregation
buried the bodies of Confederate troops who lost their lives in the Battle of Monroe's Crossing during the
Closed to the public, the grounds of Longstreet Presbyterian Church are open on the last Sunday of June
each year for a special memorial Homecoming service which is attended by the descendents of Longstreet
Elizabeth "Lizzie" Kinlaw taught at Longstreet Academy early 1900
Compiled by Dot Ray and recorded by Darryl Black
Elizabeth "Lizzie" Kinlaw taught at Longstreet Academy early 1900. She boarded at the home of the
Jim McFadyen family who resided in the Longstreet area. Elizabeth was the daughter of Duncan James Kinlaw
and Mary Caroline Johnson of the Puppy Creek Community located in Western Cumberland County (now Hoke County.)
Elizabeth Kinlaw wed Brent Tolar on 17 Aug 1905. They were the parents of Earl Tolar and Mary Vista Tolar.
The family is buried at the Ephesus Baptist Church Cemetery located in Araba, Hoke County, North Carolina.
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