Category Archives: –BRANTLEY COUNTY GA–

Crawfordite Meeting Houses of Southeast Georgia

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Hardshell Alabaha Association Crawfordite Architecture Plain Interior Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church (Interior), Raybon, Brantley County

In his fascinating thesis, The “Gold Standard” of the Wiregrass Primitive Baptists of Georgia: A History of the Crawford Faction of the Alabaha River Primitive Baptist Association, 1842-2007, (Valdosta State University, 2009), Michael Holt makes special note of the architectural distinctions of the Crawfordites: “[An] aspect of the Crawfordite tradition that remains today is the construction style of the meeting houses. While other Primitive Baptist Churches, including those in the Bennettite faction of the Alabaha Association, have begun to use brick, mortar, carpet, and other modern construction techniques, Crawfordite churches remain exactly as they would have appeared over a century ago. They are still fashioned from unfinished pine, with no electricity, carpet, or running water…this austere architecture helps keep the connection with the past strong. It should be noted that in recent years, 0ne part of the church grounds has adopted more modern conveniences. The outhouses that adorned the grounds of all the churches in the association have now been replaced with outdoor restroom facilities with running water, though this change was made primarily to bring the restroom facilities in line with public health regulations. However, this addition has not encroached on the overall intended affect of the architecture…

bethlehem-primitive-baptist-church-bachlott-ga-brantley-county-hardshell-vernacular-architectural-landmark-board-and-batten-walls-unpainted-picture-image-photograph-copyright-©-brian-brown1

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church, Bachlott, Brantley County

emmaus-baptist-church-saint-st-george-charlton-county-ga-primitive-vernacular-board-and-batten-architecture-near-st-marys-river-picture-image-photograph-©-vanishing-south-georgia-usa-201

Emmaus Primtive Baptist Church, St. George, Charlton County

high-bluff-primitive-baptist-church-schlatterville-hoboken-ga-brantley-county-landmark-picture-image-photograph-copyright-©-brian-brown-vanishing-south-georgia-usa-2013

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church, Schlatterville, Brantley County

oak-grove-primitive-baptist-church-raybon-ga-brantley-county-historic-hardshell-congregation-vernacular-architecture-landmark-picture-image-photograph-copyright-©-brian-brown-vanishing-sou

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church, Raybon, Brantley County

pilgrims-rest-primitive-baptist-church-waynesville-ga-brantely-county-hardshell-vernacular-architecture-landmark-board-and-batten-walls-picture-image-photograph-copyright-©-brian-brown-va

Pilgrim’s Rest Primitive Baptist Church, Waynesville, Brantley County

sardis-primitive-baptist-church-folkston-ga-charlton-county-crawfordite-faction-alabaha-architecture-old-time-religion-picture-image-photograph-copyright-© brian-brown-vanishing-south-geor

Sardis Primitive Baptist Church, Folkston, Charlton County

shiloh-primitive-baptist-church-blackshear-ga-pierce-county-hardshell-religion-landmark-picture-image-photograph-copyright-©-brian-brown-vanishing-south-georgia-usa-2013

Shiloh Primitive Baptist Church, Blackshear, Pierce County

smyrna-baptist-church-lulaton-ga-brantley-county-primitive-hardshell-baptist-church-board-and-batten-pine-walls-vernacular-architecture-landmark-picture-image-photograph-copyright-©-brian

Smyrna Primitive Baptist Church, Lulaton, Brantley County

vsg-wayfair-primitive-baptist-church-hardshell-cox-ga-mcintosh-county-unpainted-boards-vernacular-architecture-picture-image-photo-©-brian-brown-vanishing-south-georgia-usa-2012

Wayfair Primitive Baptist Church, Cox, McIntosh County

The Crawfordites are named for Elder Reuben Crawford. Dr. John G. Crowley, the leading authority on the history of Primitive Baptists notes in his article “The Sacred Harp Controversy in the Original Alabaha Primitive Baptist Association,” Baptist Studies Bulletin July 2004 “[they] emerged as a subset of the Primitive Baptists in the 1860s and 1870s. During the Twentieth Century the “Crawfordites” became the most austere and conservative Primitive Baptists in Georgia, eschewing radio, television, neckties, painted and heated meetinghouses.”  Michael Holt further notes in his thesis: “Whereas every other Primitive Baptist association has altered somewhat from the original tenets of the denomination, the Crawford Faction of the Alabaha has remained unchanged since the time of its founding in 1842…

For the PDF of Michael Holt’s thesis:

http://vtext.valdosta.edu:8080/xmlui/bitstream/handle/10428/430/HoltThesis.pdf?sequence=1

For Dr. Crowley’s article, follow this link and scroll down to Primitive Baptists:

http://www.centerforbaptiststudies.org/bulletin/2004/july.htm#Dates

PHOTOGRAPHER’S NOTE: This is not a complete photographic record, as there are more Crawfordite churches in the area I’ve not yet visited. They will be added as they are documented.

About these ads

4 Comments

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, --CHARLTON COUNTY GA--, --MCINTOSH COUNTY GA--, --PIERCE COUNTY GA--

Handpainted Road Sign, Brantley County

Brantley County GA Handpainted Traffic Sign Dirt Road Slow Ya Roll Dangerous Curve Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

3 Comments

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church, Schlatterville

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Hardshell Landmark Architecture  Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Originating on a high bluff of the Satilla River near Raybon in 1819, this congregation is one of the oldest and most historic in Brantley County. There is no consensus as to why these early settlers left Raybon, but Judge Folks Huxford, South Georgia’s best-known genealogist, suggested they came to the Schlatterville area around 1822 to escape a cholera outbreak.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Landmark Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

For a time, the congregation was known as Big Creek, but restored the name of High Bluff Church between 1878-80.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Interior Pews Natural Light Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Interior Chairs Funeral Home Fans Pulpit Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Still active, High Bluff is the largest congregation in the Alabaha Primitive Baptist Church Association.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Interior Chairs Funeral Home Fans Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Seat cushions and funeral home fans are the only “modern conveniences” to be found at High Bluff.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Interior Pews Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

What moved me the most at this location was the magnificent cemetery, one of the largest in the area and the final resting place of many pioneers of South Georgia. I think of it as a sort of rural Bonaventure and could spend countless hours wandering its historic lots.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Old Pioneer Cemetery Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Cemetery Lydia A. Stone Queen of the Okefenokee Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Lydia A. Stone (27 June 1864 – 4 January 1938)

In a lot near the front of the church can be found the burial place of Lydia A. Stone, who was known as the Queen of the Okefenokee for her vast land holdings and business successes. Also buried here is her first husband, D. G. Stone (19 October 1878 – 18 August 1926), her second husband and heir, John Melton Crews (17 August 1906 – 7 January 1970), as well as his second wife, Kissie (8 September 1913 – 15 November 1947), and Mrs. Stone’s parents.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Cemetery Lydia A. Stone Family Plot Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Adjacent to the Stone plot are two picketed enclosures retaining what appears to be the original woodwork, quite a rarity in the coastal climate of Brantley County.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Wooden Plot Enclosure Ammons Confederate Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Wooden Plot Enclosure Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The headstone pictured below, placed by the Sons of the American Revolution,  is of great significance to genealogists and students of the American Revolution for its connection to General Francis Marion, better known as the Swamp Fox.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County John Ammons Revolutionary War Marion's Men Headstone Picture Image Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

John Ammons, NC & GA Militias Revolutionary War (1760 – 1852)

One of Marion’s Men

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Cemetery Daniel F Gill Sr Headston Circus Tent Lion R B B Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Daniel F. Gill, Sr. (15 September 1905 – 18 December 1981)

I’m guessing that Mr. Gill was somehow involved in the circus.

High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Schlatterville Hoboken GA Brantley County Cemetery Griffin Headstones Wildflowers Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

For more about High Bluff Primitive Baptist Church & Cemetery:

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~gabrantl/church-19.html

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~gabrantl/cemlisthibluff1.html

Brantley County’s Historical Society does an excellent job of documenting these places.

5 Comments

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, Schlatterville GA

Effects of Okefenokee Wildfires, Brantley County

Brantley County GA 2011 Wildfire Effects Landscape Pine Forests Racepond Fire Okefenokee Area Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Driving from Racepond to Hoboken, on Georgia Highway 121, you’ll notice several miles of desolate landscape like this, all the result of the Racepond Fire of 2011, which eventually burned 21,000 acres.

http://jacksonville.com/news/georgia/2012-02-04/story/southeast-georgia-fire-season-could-be-repeat-2011

http://jacksonville.com/news/georgia/2011-06-03/story/firefighters-making-headway-race-pond-fire

Leave a comment

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church, Raybon

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Historic Hardshell Congregation Vernacular Architecture Landmark Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The cemetery at Oak Grove would suggest that this congregation is a bit younger than other Hardshell churches in the area. The earliest headstones date to the turn of the last century.

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Historic Hardshell Congregation Vernacular Architecture Landmark Shutter Windows Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Hardshell Congregation Vernacular Architecture Landmark Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The beautiful interior is smaller than most but equally awe-inspiring.

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Interior Pulpit Washing Bucket Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Interior Pews Natural Light Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

An infant burial of 1901 is the earliest I could located in the cemetery, but there are many Brantley county pioneer families represented here.

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery Wrought Iron Enclosure Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The Chesser family is well-known in Brantley county, as well as neighboring Ware County, where many of their ancestors were associated with the history of the Okefenokee Swamp.

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery W. C.  Chesser Headstone Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

W. C. Chesser (10 April 1886 – 19 February 1933)

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery Lucy Aldridge Chesser Headstone Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Lucy Aldridge Chesser (27 September 1892 – 27 December 1937)

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery Infant Son of W. C.  & L. A. Chesser Headstone Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Infant Son of W. C. & L. A. Chesser (11 July 1928)

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery William Clyde Chesser Headstone Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

William Clyde Chesser (3 January 1910 – 24 February 193

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery Luvada Stokes Headstone Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Luvada Stokes (22 August 1883 – 12 June 1906)

Oak Grove Primitive Baptist Church Raybon GA Brantley County Cemetery Berrie Walker Morgan Clinch's Cavalry CSA Headstone Picture Image Photograph Copyright ©Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Private Berrie Walker Morgan, Company A, 4th (Clinch’s) Georgia Cavalary, CSA

(30 October 1838 – 26 November 1916)

1 Comment

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, Raybon GA

Log Tobacco Barn, Bachlott

Log Tobacco Barn Bachlott GA Brantely County Landmark Endangered Agricultural Architecture Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

1 Comment

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, Bachlott GA

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Chuch, Bachlott

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture New Tin Roof Window Shutters Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

This church was founded in 1842 and joined the Alabaha Association (Crawfordite) in 1905. They joined the Satilla River Association in 1969. The congregation disbanded in 1991. I’m not sure when the present structure was built.

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Vernacular Architectural Landmark Board and Batten Walls Unpainted Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The view above is from the “back” and the one below from the “front”. It’s often hard to distinguish such directions as these churches all have entrances on three sides.

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Vernacular Architectural Landmark Board and Batten Unpainted Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Below is a good representation of the old-style shuttered windows; in the architecture of these churches, the middle window is usually higher than all the others. I’m guessing this has something to do with air circulation…

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Vernacular Architectural Landmark Board and Batten Shuttered Windows Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Some of the newer Hardshell churches have modern restrooms outside; Bethlehem has a well-built, though still primitive, privy.

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Outhouse Privy Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The interiors of all of the Hardshell churches are beautiful testaments to faith and good carpentry.

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Religion Interior Pews Rough Hewn Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Religion Pulpit Brooms Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Religion Pulpit Brooms Pine Lumber Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Bachlott GA Brantley County Hardshell Religion Interior Pews Rough Hewn Roof Beams Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Bethlehem Cemetery is large and well-maintained, as are all of the Hardshell cemeteries, but is unique in that it contains a pair of grave houses, a real rarity in South Georgia.

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Bachlott GA Brantley County GA Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Note the gopher hole at the edge of this lot. Gopher holes are a sure sign of rattlesnakes, too. The grave houses pictured below may be renovations, but they harken to a very old tradition, not as common in the Coastal Plain as in other regions of the South. My assumption is that the smaller of the two was built for an infant or small child.

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Bachlott GA Brantley County GA Wooden Grave Houses Folk Tradition Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Bachlott GA Brantley County GA Wooden Grave House Folk Tradition Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Adult Grave House

Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Bachlott GA Brantley County Wooden Infant or Child Grave House Folk Tradition Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Child’s Grave House

For cemetery and genealogical information:

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~gabrantl/cemlistbethlehem-1.html

Some references list this church’s address as Bethlehem Road in Hickox, but if you attempt to take that road from U. S. Highway 301, you will find an overgrown field road that leads to an inaccessible bridge. Since I had to access it from Bachlott, and due to the fact that it’s closer to that settlement, I listed Bachlott as its location.

4 Comments

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, Bachlott GA

Cypress Swamp, Waynesville

Waynesville GA Brantley County Cypress Pond Swamp Coreopsis Natural Area Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Leave a comment

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, Waynesville GA

Pilgrim’s Rest Primitive Baptist Church, Waynesville

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Landmark Board and Batten Walls Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

I will post information on the history of this church when I can locate it.

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Board and Batten Landmark Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Board and Batten Landmark Palm Tree Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Like other “Hardshell” churches in the region, the interior is as plain as the exterior.

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Board and Batten Interior Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Board and Batten Interior Pews Pulpit Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The age of the boards would suggest this is an older church.

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Board and Batten Interior Pews Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Here are a few headstones from Pilgrim’s Rest Cemetery:

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Cemetery Gate James O & Gertrude Smith Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

The entrance gate is dedicated to the memory of James O., Sr., and N. Gertrude Jacobs Smith.

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Waynesville GA Brantley County William Thomas Bennett Company N 26th Georgia Volunteer Infantry Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Private William Thomas Bennett, Company N, 26th Georgia Volunteer Infantry

(21 September 1833 – 19 January 1907)

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Waynesville GA Headstone of Jerusha Bennett Southeast Georgia Pioneer Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Jerusha Bennett (22 February 1831 – 24 March 1908)

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery Waynesville GA Brantley County Henry P. Grantham Company A 29th Georgia Volunteer Infantry Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

Private Henry P. Grantham, Company A, 29th Georgia Volunteer Infantry (1840 – 1914)

Pilgrim's Rest Primitive Baptist Church Waynesville GA Brantely County Hardshell Vernacular Architecture Board and Batten Open Doorway Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

3 Comments

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, Waynesville GA

International R-185 Fire Truck, Waynesville

Waynesville GA Brantley County GA International R-185 Fire Truck Engine Pumper Firefighting 1950s Rust Rusty Abandoned Cool Relic Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

I don’t know if this once did service for the Waynesville community or if it’s just a salvaged truck; this one likely dates to the late 1950s and is in relatively good condition.

Waynesville GA Brantley County GA International R-185 Fire Truck Engine 1950s Rust Rusty Abandoned Cool Relic Picture Image Photograph Copyright © Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2013

5 Comments

Filed under --BRANTLEY COUNTY GA--, Waynesville GA