Concord Baptist

Jasper County
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Org 1808
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Photography by Scott Farrar

There is some disagreement in the records we can find about the founding of Concord Primitive Baptist. One record states the church was founded in 1815 when two acres of land were transferred to the church by George Morris. Another record states the church was founded in October of 1808. We believe the earlier record is correct in that we have partial minutes of the church which begin in 1812. Either way, this historic treasure has been located here for over 200 years.

The record of early minutes of these churches is always very interesting. Among the mundane and repetitive reporting (complete with lots of mispelled words) are wonderful entries which give inight into the daily lives of these early Georgia pioneers. For instance, a partial listing of what we have on record would state the following:

April 3, 1813: “A Charg Layed agains Brother Micajah Sansum, by Brother Lacey for a Cusin him with Liing & etc. The Church has appointed a Committee, wit Solomon Groce, August 6, 1814: “A Charge Brought In By Brother Luke Williams from a report against Brother Bartlet Eaves for getting Drunk and misbehaving”John Brown, Luke Williams, James Reaves, & Zacheriah Falkner and fore they to Report to the next Conference. February 1, 1817: Excommunicated Brother John Carter. July 23, 1819: “Received by Experience Sister Charlotty Faulkner.””The charge by Brother Raid against Brother Williams settled between them selves.” “Excommunicated Nathan Williams For Raising an accoumpt and swaring to the same against William Ferril which we believe to be Rong”

October 21, 1820: “A charge brought in by brother Lowry against brother Williams for making use of unchristian language to his wife and for his contradicting her and saying she had not discharged her duty as a wife and likewise for charging brother Lowry for saying that brother Williams had told a palpable lye. And for saying brother Lowry had told a Lye and he could prove it., the above charges laid over to the next Conference.” March 24, 1821: “Brother Absolom Achols came forward with an acknowledgment for drinking to much Spirits. the brethren feel to forgive him.” June 22, 1821: “Excommunicated Absalom Echols for the sin of drunkenesss”

January 26, 1823: James L. Burks appointed clerk of the church. “A charge brought in by report against Sister Katharine Williams for her being in a pregnant State and agree to send Sister Northcut and Sister Brown to gets Her to attend our next conference to answer to Said charge.” January 24, 1824: “Catharine Williams came forward with an acknowledgment for the transgression to which She was Excommunicated.”

Brother Malone charged with drunkenness.

March 26, 1824: “Took up the case of Catharine Williams and feel to forgive her.”

“Excommunicated Brother John Malone for the Sin of drunkenness and refusing to hear the church.”

Life in the Georgia backwoods was a hard one and these were tough people. The thing that strikes us about these old minutes is the unmistakable roll of the church in these early times. The church was community center, dating service, court house with judge and jury, and everything else that a community had to have to function as a civilized society. The ultimate punishment was excommunication after a peer review of the transgression. As you can see from the above, Sister Williams was brought back into the fold and forgiven while Brother Malone was turned out into the spiritual wilderness. The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.

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