Histories of The General Baptist Churches -
of the
Union Association 1953


Clay Church was organized in 1895 with fifteen members, two miles northeast of Clay, in the Price school house. It was named at that time General Baptist Church of Christ at Pleasant Valley. Elders W. A. Miller and J. F. Bumpus were organizing ministers. A one-acre plot of ground was bought April 10, 1896, from Mr. J. D. Townsend for $50.00, and was deeded to the trustees of the church. The first pastor was Rev. W. A. Miller. In 1901 the membership had increased to thirty-one.

march 28, 1905, the church bought a lot in the town of Clay from George W. Blackwell and wife. A new church was built on the front part of the lot facing Green Street in 1909. A year later the back portion of the lot was sold to W. E. Hearon. From this time until august 10, 1918, records of the church have been lost.

March 1, 1919, the trustees were empowered to buy a lot for the present building site. This lot was located on the east side of Main Street in Clay, and was bought from H. Z. Clark and wife. March 6, 1920, a building committee composed of the following was appointed by the pastor:

A month later April 4, the finance committee: was appointed.

The church worship was held in the City Court House during the construction of the building, which was completed enough for worship, October 13, 1923. The building was mortgaged at that time for $5,000.00 for a term of five years. October 11, 1924, the church bought adjoining property that is now used for the janitor's home. The janitor's salary has been supplemented by the use of this house since that time and has proven an asset.

the church was dedicated September 12, 1926, with the pastor, Rev. J. R. Edwards, delivering the dedictorial sermon. $7,785.00 was raised on that day through cash donations and pledges.

The financiers of the church were laboring people and did not have large sums of money to give at any time, but they never lost their faith and vision for a completed edifice in which to worship.

In June, 1939, pews were bought and installed by members at a cost of $1200.00.

From November, 1948, to November, 1950, a broadcast program was sponsored by friends of the church over station WFMV, Madisonville, Ky. There was approximately $400.00 in this treasury on the second anniversary, at which time the program was discontinued due to the death of the Pastor, Rev. C. H. Howard. $100.00 of this amount was used for Home Missions in Union Association. The remained was used to build a baptistery with Rev. D. A. Duffer, pastor, doing the beautiful painting.

The parsonage, which adjoins the church yard on the rear was bought from Charlie Asbridge in July of 1946. One year later it was dedicated by Rev. Howard for use of God's people.

The first Vacation Bible School was held in 1947, with forty-one conversions. Each year since, a school has been held and many more souls have been won to the Lord through these efforts.

A Missionary Society was organized in 1937, but disbanded. It was reorganized a few years later and is still very active. The Missionary Convention has met with Clay Church three times. The Conference has met with the church once.

Union Association has convened with the church the following years: 1938,1946, 1950.

The Sunday School Convention was held in 1918 in Clay Church.

A Ladies Aid was organized in 1910 with ten members during the pastorate of Rev. T. A. H. Laslie. This organization has been very active down through the years and has carried out quite a bit of the responsibility of the indebtedness. One charter member, Mrs. Birdie Baker, is still active in the work.

The General Association was held here in 1907, 1927, 1952.

Names of pastors through the years, some serving at different intervals:

Church Clerks:
  1. I.F. Morrison
  2. L.B. Gray
  3. J.A. Johnson
  4. Van Jenkins
  5. Laura Johnson
  6. Daisy Sigler
  7. J. R. Jenkins
  8. Victoria Rayburn
  9. Annie Hill
  10. Ella Conrad
  11. Thelma Belt
  12. Nellie Vaughn
  13. Verna Hopwood
  14. Myrtle Marshall
Ministers who have been members: Revs. Marvin Rideout, Bayne Wilson, Ray Dorris, Jett Reynolds, Gaylor Price, E. L. grant, Hascal Edwards.

* - Source - History of Union Association of General Baptist 1840 - 1953
M.D. Mc Donald

Return to: Memorial Biographies of General Baptist Ministers of Union Association

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