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Transylvania County, NC 

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Cathey's Creek Baptist Church Record

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Old Cathey's Creek Baptish Church 

Photo from the Mary Jane McCrary Collection. Photo Book 1, Page 43. Rowell Bosse NC Room Transylvania County Library.



by Mrs. Belle Blake Rogers


The first organization of the Baptist in what is now known as Transylvania County, and from which grew the organization known as Cathey’s Creek Baptist Church was designated as an arm of the French Broad Baptist Church of Buncombe County. This Mission was started April 17, 1813 and was the result of labors of Elder Benjamin King, who continued as leader of the Mission until July 22, 1822, when Cathey’s Creek Church was organized, at which time he was elected pastor of the church and served continuously until 1840.

For about 18 years of its early history, Cathey’s Creek Church embraced in its constituency the territory of the present county of Transylvania.

As nearly as can be determined from the old records, it is thought that the charter members of the church were: Robert Jordan, Mary King, Nancy Patterson, Phoebe Johnson, Samuel Johnson, Peggy Johnson, John Crow and Absolum Hooper. The records show the following members joined prior to the permanent organization of the church in 1822: Mary Wilson, Sallie Sutton, Nancy Hogsed, Kizzie Duckworth, Hannah Ball, Francis Allison and wife, Anna Allison, Susanne Nicholson, Peggy Davis, William Gillespie, Robert Gillespie, Anne Owen, James Owen, Phoebe Burrell, Hannah Nern, Issac Trammel, William Galloway, Sarah Galloway, Esther Glazener, Surry Davis, David Hedden, Millie Gillespie, Sallie Gillespie, Peggy Hooper, Jonathan Siniard, Peggy Siniard, Robert McMinn, John Aiken, John Galloway, Jr., Betsy Galloway, Priscilla Spigle, Kizzie Galloway, Vicey Nicholson, Jane Rea, Betsy Reed, Zilpah Trummel and Sallie Aiken.

The first church house was built on a ridge east of what is now known as Selica, which was used for a short while when a log house was built on the present site about 1821.

About the year 1830, Benjamin Wilson built a saw mill on Cathey’s Creek, which was the first saw mill in Transylvania County and sawed lumber for a frame house. This house was built on the spot where the present church now stands and this building was accidently burned about the year 1887. Soon after another church was built on the same spot, but was not finally completed until about the year 1900 when the house was completed. This work was largely contributed to by I. E. Duckworth, Mrs. Bessie Bet Duckworth and Mr. C. C. Duckworth.

On January 18, 1813, Mary Wilson was received into the church by experience of Grace and so far as is known she was the first convert of this church and the first convert in what is known as Transylvania County.

The first Association affiliations were decided on in the year 1815, and a letter was sent by the Church of the Saluda Association. The church later affiliated with the French Broad Association, then the Salem Association, then a Transylvania Association of short existence and finally in 1822 [1922?] went into the organization of the Transylvania County Association. Sometime during the history of the church it was a member of what was known as the Twelve Mile Association (S.C.).

It seems from the records that Robert McMinn was the first minister licensed by this church as the records state that on June 20, 1819, Robert McMinn was licensed to exercise his gift within the bounds of this church. On October 2nd following this date, Robert Jordan was licensed to preach.

The first recorded death of the membership was Kizzie Duckworth, who died January 16, 1820.

The third Sunday and Saturday before has been the regular meeting day of the church since its institution 117 years ago.

The records fail to give the names of the pastors and clerks throughout the history of the church, but so far as is known Benjamin King was the sole pastor from 1813 to 1840; he was followed for a short while by Robert Jordan. Merit Rickman served a short time. These two pastors served the church for ten or fifteen years after the death of Benjamin King.

From Sinard – Siniard book by Lois B. O’Kelly, published 1977, p. 300-301, available in Transylvania County Library. Transcribed by Linda O. Anders, 24 April 2003:

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Part of the Cathey's Creek Baptist Church Membership Records. Cathey's Creek Baptist Church, located in Transylvania County, NC, was the first church formed in the county.

These records were copied by the Church Clerk, Nell Waldrop, 26 Nov 1985

Transcribed by Linda O. Anders, 14 Jan 2003


Transcription of first page below:

Aiken, Charlotte Duckworth by experience

Sept. 19, 1830 – Aikens, Ezekiel “

Dec. 11, 1837 – Allison, Francis “

Mar. 16, 1838 – Adams, Matilda “

Jan. 19, 1839 -- “ “ Dismissed by Letter

Aug. 25, 1838 – Adams, James By experience

Jan. 19, 1839 -- “ “ Dismissed by Letter

Aug. 26, 1838 – Allison, Mary By experience

Oct. 7, 1838 – Aiken, Levisey Rec’d by Letter

“ -- Allen, Elizabeth By experience

Aug. 15, 1834 – Beasley, Lydia “

March 12, 1836 – Beasley, Joseph “

Nov. 15, 1828 – Beasley, Kizzie “

Oct. 20, 1829 – Beasley, Reuben “

Nov. 17, 1833 – Bracken, Lovina Kitchen “

May 16, 1834 – Bracken, Nancy “

May 26, 1838 – Cison, James “

May 20, 1826 – Cook, Anna By Letter

March 18, 1825 – Davis, Surry Excluded

Nov. 15, 1828 -- “ “ Dismissed by Letter

Jan. 18, 1823 – Duckworth, Sarah By Experience

Jan. 28, 1834 – Duckworth, Jonathan “

Nov. 19, 1834 – Duckworth, John McCamy “

“ -- Duckworth, Sarah (Hamlin) “

May 18, 1838 – Duckworth, Jane “

“ -- Duckworth, Elizabeth 1 Hamlin “ Died Feb. 1, 1854

May 25, 1838 – Duckworth, William “

Sept. 17, 1825 – Erwin, Thomas “

“ -- Erwin, Mary “

Oct. 7, 1838 – Erwin, Nancy “

Aug. 16, 1834 – Frazier, Margret “

1  The writing is unclear but looks like “nee Hamlin”, which would mean her maiden name was Hamlin;

however, other records indicate she was a Duckworth and married John Reagan Hamlin.

Cathey's Creek Baptist Church Membership Record Pg1

Transcription of second page below:

Nov. 19, 1837 More, Priestly Experience

Jan. 19, 1838 More, Mary Ann “

May 21, 1838 Nicholson, Sarah (Wilson)2 “

July 15, 1826 Owen, James Died

May 18, 1838 Owen, Levina Experience

Aug. 26 “ Owen, Sarah “

Feb. 16, 1839 Owen, Sarah (Adams3 Dismissed by letter

Aug. 26, 1838 Owen, Elizabeth Experience

June 18, 1824 Patterson, Elizabeth “

Nov. 17, 1825 Philips, Rutha “

July 20, 1832 Powell, Jane “

Aug. 16, 1828 Reese, Nancy “

July 28, 1828 Swainey, John “

Aug. 26, 1838 Stamey, John “

Dec. 18, “ 4, Nancy “

Aug. 21 “ Taylor, Mary “

 Cathey's Creek Baptish Church Membership Record Pg2

2  Again this notation “(Wilson)” is unclear as to meaning. From other records, we find that Sarah

Nicholson, born 1819, married Matthew M. Wilson.

3  It is possible since Sarah Owen had joined in 1838, the notation “(Adams” means that was her married

name and that she was leaving to join her husband’s church.

4 Writing is not clear.

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