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Mt. Gilead Christian Church will celebrate 175th year Sunday, July 24, 2005

  • Church located near Adair-Green County line on Skin House Branch

  • Colonel Knox, contingent of Long Hunters, stayed two years at the site

Photo will accompany this article
Greensburg, KY- Mt. Gilead Christian Church is set to celebrate their 175th year on Sunday, July 24, 2005. The history of the church building and the land in which it sits started back during the days of the pioneers.

In 1770, while Daniel Boone was alone exploring territory along the Cumberland River, Colonel James Knox and a party of forty hunters from Virginia and Carolina came to Kentucky, bringing dogs, traps, hunters equipment, and pack horses, and established a central camp on the Cumberland River, now Wayne County.

They separated into smaller parties, which were to meet back at this central camp once every five weeks to deposit their pelts and plan future movements. Colonel Knox, with 27 hunters, soared deeper into the wilderness and came to a site, now known as Old Camp Knox, on the waters of Skin House Branch and Caney Fork Creek, near the line of what is now Adair and Green Counties.

This was a popular trail crossing area for buffalo, deer, and many other wild animals, due partly to the abundance of water, salt and sulphur minerals, fine grass, and heavy cane brake, which supplied winter feed, so the hunters planted camp here and finding it to be such a good hunting area, did not return to their central camp in five weeks as they had planned to do, but remained two years - for that reason were called "Long Hunters".

The hunters had 2,300 pelts, some in the tanning vats, when a group of Indians made an attack. The Long Hunters then fled, leaving the pelts, and returned to the central camp where they were further discouraged and returned to Virginia. However, some of the Long Hunters later returned with their families and settled in the area.

Erection of church of log construction in 1790

As new settlers came and the community grew, a need for a place of worship was met by the erection of a church of log construction in 1790. This erection was placed on public land, known among the settlers as "Free State". The exact location of the skin house erected by the "Long Hunters" and destroyed by the Indians was chosen for the church site for sentimental reasons.

This church was known as Camp Knox Union. The people professed a religion in common and were not particular about denominational beliefs, they wished to welcome the traveling ministers with disregard to denomination, so for these reasons the church was established as a union, non-denominational place of worship.

School House with Community Hall in 1828

This settlement grew and prospered exceedingly well. Among the progressive movements was the erection of a School House with a Community Hall in the second story, and in 1828 the need for a larger church to accommodate the need of the community was met by the erection of a brick structure, which is the structure that is used today.

The bricks were made of clay dug from local earth, and burned in a kiln which was located near-by. The pews and pulpit that stand, were made by local craftsmen, of locally obtained yellow poplar timber of the finest quality, and a Southern Colonial style piano was imported. On July 25, 1830 this church was dedicated as the Mt. Gilead Church of Christ, this congregation continues to meet every Lords Day for worship under the leadership of Brother Billy F. Minor and continues to maintain the church building and grounds.

Public is invited to attend

The members of Mt. Gilead Christian Church plan to welcome any member of the public to attend their 175th celebration on Sunday, July 24, 2005. Morning services begin at 10:00 a.m. (ct), lunch will follow on the grounds with the program starting at 1:00 p.m. including guest preachers, singing, fellowship and a display of historical information and items about the church.

Mt. Gilead Christian Church is located on Skinhouse Branch Road, from Route 61 take Long Hunters Camp Road near the Adair-Green County line. From Route 55 take Coburg Road near the Adair-Taylor County line, turn left onto Haskingsville Road and left onto Skinhouse Branch Road.
Story courtesy of

Robin Rae Hancock
robinchancock@excite.com
p: 270-385-9650
7362 Hwy 55 South
Columbia, KY 42728
Live Well-Laugh Often-Love Much


This story was posted on 2005-07-14 22:50:27
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Mt. Gilead Christian Church celebrates 175th year



2005-07-24 - Columbia, KY - Photo Robin Hancock. Mt. Gilead Christian Church celebrated its 175th year today in the red brick building pictured above. Its history, including the people who founded it, the facility and the land it sits on, dates back to the days when Daniel Boone was exploring on the eastern side of the state, and Col. James Knox brought his party to the Skin House Branch on what is now the Adair/Green County line.
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