Thought to be the oldest campmeeting in continuous existence in the South, the Effingham County Methodist Campground has been held at several locations since 1790, with the present tabernacle dating to 1910. The family “tents” which line the campground are actually permanent structures where people gather during events, which were once much longer in duration than today.
Historic Marker Text:
Effingham Camp Meeting has the longest record of continuous service in South Georgia-from 1790 according to oral tradition. The first camp ground was off Sisters’ Ferry Road on land of George Powledge, later sold to Gideon Mallette. In 1864 the site was burned during Sherman’s March to the Sea. In 1865 and 1866 encampment was held at Turkey Branch Methodist Church. In 1867 the camp ground was rebuilt on the Edward Bird tract at Springfield. In 1907 the present site was occupied after an exchange with G. M. Brinson. August encampment includes the third Sunday.
Interior of the Tabernacle
Mallette Memorial Text:
In Loving Memory of Gideon Mallette, One of the Founders of the Effingham County Campmeeting. Lewis Mallette, His Son, Who Was Instrumental in Building in Springfield. Jerry A. Mallette, Lewis’s Son, Who Started the First Tent. Clifford J. Mallette, Jerry’s Son, Received His Call to Preach at the Old Campground, and Served in the South Georgia Conference for 32 Years.
“Tents” of the Effingham County Methodist Campground
The Zettler Tent