Illinois Baptists. Manuscript minute book of the Village Creek Baptist Church of Christ of Wabash County, Illinois, 1826-1839.
VAULT folio Case MS 5339
Purchased on the Frank H. Woods Book Fund.
Minute book of Village Creek Baptist Church of Christ of Wabash County, Illinois, containing minutes of business meetings of the church held between Aug. 1826 and Feb. 1839. The Village Creek Baptist Church was part of the group of “primitive”, or original, fundamentalist Baptists who settled in early Illinois. The minute book opens with the church constitution, recording the incorporation of the church, to be known as the Village Creek Baptist Church of Christ, on the “second Saturday in August”, 1825, in the presence of elders attending from neighboring churches: Charles Whiting and Thomas Murphey from Bethlehem Church; William Martin, Asa Hammond, and Garvis Dale from Antioch Church; and Laban Payne from Bon-Pas Church. Names of Village Creek founding members include James and Betsey Gray, Charles P. and Sally Burns, John and Betsey Proctor, Hester Truscot, Margret Painter, Polly Garner, Barsheba Campbell, Betsey Jordan, Polly Frazer, John and Rebekah Compton, and E. Roberts. The minute book also contains thirteen “Rules of decorum”. Each month after the “divine service”, the business meeting was convened under the leadership of a moderator, at which time members discussed and voted on church matters such as location of meeting house, selection of deacons, and behavior of members of the congregation. Leaves - list church expenditures for Aug. 1827-Oct. 1835. Names of active church members and dismissed members are listed on verso of leaf . The minute book was probably kept at the home of the Gray family, as hand tracings, poems, song lyrics, recipes, math exercises, decorations and doodlings, written as late as May 1884 by the Gray daughters, Maggie, Jennie, and Hannah of Keensburg, Wabash County, Illinois, appear on blank pages at the back.