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Faithful Hannah Baptist Church
(Photo taken by Kay Midgett Sheppard October 2001)
The Faithful Hannah Baptist Church sits on a site approximately one-half mile east of the village of Middletown a few hundred feet from the main road. This is one of the earlier Negro churches of Hyde County. Sunday School at this church was organized in 1872. The church members celebrated the Sunday School's 103rd Anniversary in October 1975. This indicates that the church was probably established much earlier than 1872, however, the exact date of its beginning is not known.
Faithful Hannah Church has done much to convey the Christian religion to the people of Hyde County. It has had to struggle for its survival having been destroyed by natural forces several times. In the early years as membership increased, it was decided that the original structure was too small, and thus plans were made for the construction of a larger building. At the time, the minister was opposed to the congregation's desires for a new church, and it was reported that he prayed that a new church would never stand to replace the smaller one. It seems that the minister's prayers were to be answered. Construction began on the new building, but a tremendous wind destroyed the constructed part. Not to be stopped, the members were determined that a new church would be built and construction began again. The new church was completed and used by the congregation for several years, but in 1933 a hurricane destroyed the church. Some of the members, being superstitious, believed that the previous minister's prayer was going to be carried out no matter what the congregation did about it, however, many of the members realized that the forces of nature had been responsible for the destruction of the two previous structures. Plans were made and money raised for the construction of the church. The church was completed about 1939. Today it still stands in the quiet village of Middletown, surround by the church cemetery, its white-frame structure gleaming in the bright sunshine with its steeple pointing majestically toward the heavens as a reminder of what faith and courage can accomplish even when faced with adversity.
(Information taken from Hyde County History published by the Hyde Co. Historical Society in 1976.)
[When I visited this church in October 2001 there was about 3 inches of water standing underneath the church. Many graves stood in the large cemetery at the back and side of the church and it had been mowed but many of the grave markers had sunk beyond the ground and could not be seen. The ground was unstable in places so I couldn't take photographs of all the markers but I did get some of them. If you suspect that any of your kinfolks are buried here please drop me a note and I'll be glad to see if I have a photo of the tombstone. Kay Midgett Sheppard]