Baptist Church

The Missionary Baptist Church of Pattonsburg was organized February 2, 1881, and the original members were William G. Weldon, Louis Noble, E. H. Tillery, H. B. Tillery, F. R. Bullock, J. H. Weldon, N. G. Dillon, Rebecca Noble, Mary Shanks, D. E. Dillon, M. J. Weldon, Lucy M. Christie, Elizabeth Hardin, and Melvina Robbins. Another member has joined since and they have now in course of erection, and nearly completed a handsome frame structure thirty-six by fifty feet at a cost of $1,500.

The Liberty Church near McFalls was erected in 1860 and is well sustained.

The Free Will Baptist Church was the first organized church in the township, and was located on Benjamin Salmon’s place, in the northeast corner, in the year 1840.

The First Christian Church was organized in 1842, and became a prosper-organization until the war of 1861, when it became broken up, its membership being scattered.

Oak Ridge Christian Church

This church was organized in 1867, and they succeeded in building a very pretty frame church edifice in 1871, at a cost of $1,000. Its original roll of membership numbered twenty-eight. The officers of the church were, Meredith Morris, Henry Ward and Pleasant Daniels, elders; and George A. Wilkins, and Matthew Stapleton, deacons. The members were John Gagan and wife, Peter Stapleton and wife, Thomas Daniels and wife, Levi Hedges and wife, Matthew Stapleton and wife, Henry Ward and with, Meredith Morris and wife, Pleasant Daniel and wife, George A. Wilkins and wife, E W. Ally and wife, Agnes Wilkins, Jemima C. Wilkins, Susannah Stapleton, Elizabeth Ramey, Mahala J. Ramey, Elizabeth Webb, Marion Morgan; and Sarah Daniel. There has been quite a, number of changes in the ministry, and among the number who have officiated are the names of Revs. J. H. Coffey, Andrew Sweeney, Beecher Myrick, J. Oxford, and J. F. Jordan. The church has grown until it numbers seventy-five as its present membership, and is in a flourishing condition.

The church of the United Brethren is located near the center of section fifteen. The congregation is not very large, but united and prosperous.

Methodist Episcopal Church

The first church of this denomination in Benton township, was the Hopewell Class, in 1856, the circuit preacher being the Rev. R. R. Witten, now a resident of Pattonsburg and the present pastor of the flourishing church of that place. The services were held at the school-house, and there were but. nine members the first year. The same gentleman occasionally held service at the old town of Pattonsburg. The church at that time had no property. There is now a Pattonsburg circuit, besides several others in the county. The former is under the charge of the Rev. Mr. Witten, above spoken of in the three organized classes of the Pattonsburg circuit there are now ninety members. In the Heatts class, in the north part of Benton township, they have fifty members and a handsome church edifice, costing: about $1,000.

In the Hopewell, on the east side of the township, they have twenty-five members, but as yet no church of their own. The Pattonsburg church numbers sixty-five members, and have a church in course of erection, which,. when completed, will have cost something over $4,200. This latter class,. though new, is in a flourishing condition. The parsonage is a very pretty frame cottage of four rooms, costing about $450.

Schools

Benton township feels proud of her schools, eight in number, because the buildings are creditable and the attendance large, being fifth in the county ia the number of children and in the days taught. The school at Pattonsburg is in a flourishing condition, and the house is becoming too small to meet the wants of this growing town.

The first brass band organized was July 20, 1876.

The only valuation of the old town of Pattonsburg that is of record, was in 1870, and it amounted to $4,625.

Societies

A. F. & A. M. Pattonsburg Lodge

A. F. & A. M., was established in 1854 in the old, town, its hall was burned in 1877, and the members removed to the new town the same year. The officers for the present year are William M. Williams, W. M.; Jesse Groomer, S. W.; J. M. Poage, J. W.; David Groomer’, treasurer; B. S. Ramey, secretary; E. B. Christie, S. D.; C. R. Shaw, J.; D. C. W. Yates, T. The present membership is forty-five. The lodge owns a hall and meets regularly, the first Saturday after fall moon.

Wilbur Lodge, I. O. O. F.

This lodge was instituted February 23, 1881, by C. A. Conrad, the district deputy, with twelve charter members. It now numbers forty-two with the following list of officers : J. B. Cross, N. G. ; Daniel Gintis, V. G. ; S. D. Stevens, recorder; J. M: Watson, per. secretary; and Elijah Ellis, treasurer. The order holds weekly meetings on each Wednesday night.

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