Historical sketch of Zion Mill Creek Baptist Church

The Wateree Baptist Association minutes indicate that Zion Mill Creek Baptist Church was organized in 1883 as an Missionary Outreach of the Association. The three member council of ministers organizing the church included Reverends William M. Lowman, George Washington Taylor and Samuel Barber. The 17 charter members of the church lived in the Lykesland Community. Some of those new members were former members of St. John Baptist Church of Hopkins, South Carolina. In fact, the first pastor was Reverend William M. Lowman who pastored both St. John and St. Matthews Baptist Churches. Reverend Lowman was the son of John and Suckie Adams Lowman. William Lowman was born in 1850 on Robert Adams Bluff Plantation located on the Old Bluff Road in Hopkins. Pastor Lowman was married to Ellen Jones Lowman, the sister of Reverend Pelham Jones. The Jones family were also former slaves of Robert Adams.

Reverend Lowman's Pastorate covered a span of 4 years (1883-1886). Seventeen persons confessed Christ and were Baptized during Reverend Lowman's Pastorate. Pastor Lowman organized the church's first Sunday School Department in 1884. Irene Page was elected the first Superintendent of the Sunday School Department. Deacon Henry Doby served as the first clerk under Pastor Lowman for one year in 1883. William Thompson served as church clerk and superintendent of the Sunday School when Pastor Lowman resigned his pastorate in 1886.

H. W. Washington was elected pastor in 1887. Prior to affiliating with Mill Creek, Pastor Washington was a member of St. John Baptist Church. Pastor Henry Washington, Jr. Was the son of Deacon Henry and Martha Washington, former slaves of Joel Adams, Jr. During slavery the Washington family lived on the Elm Savannah Plantation in Weston, S.C. Pastor Washington was born in 1854.

Very few conversions were made during Reverend Washington's 9 year pastorate. Mill Creek's membership never exceeded 45 during Reverend Washington's pastorate. One of the members lost during this period was Deacon Henry Doby. Deacon Doby departed his life September 16, 1890.

D. Thompson and D. Denley served as superintendent of the Sunday school between 1887 and 1895. The Sunday school department had 5 teachers and 30 scholars when Pastor Washington came to the church in 1887. During 1887, D. Thompson served as superintendent and William Thompson served as the Sunday school secretary. The following year D. Denley assumed the superintendent's position. Louis Richardson served as Sunday school secretary beginning in 1891.

Zion Mill Creek's annual pastor's salary was $30 in 1894. The salary increased to $35 annually by 1900. Strange as it may sound, the annual pastor's salary was $75 in 1893. The drop in pastor salary after 1893 might suggest that farm prices dropped during the late 1890's. The drop in the pastor's salary may have also resulted due to the attempt to complete the churches sanctuary, started in 1890.

At the close of Pastor Washington's service to the church in 1895, Reverend William Lowman was called again to serve as pastor. Reverend Lowman's second pastorate ended in 1898 when he begin to suffer from poor health. Spiritual leaders of the church that worked with pastor Lowman included Anderson Fuller, A. Deneley, S. Washington, Major Warner, D. Thompson and William Thompson.

Deacon William Thompson was ordained as a minister by the Wateree Association September 10, 1893. Reverend Washington was elected Zion Mill Creek's pastor in 1898. Pastor William Washington was the older brother of former Pastor Henry Washington.

Copyright ©2002, John Middleton, Associate Minister at New Light Beulah Baptist Church, Hopkins, S. C, all rights reserved.  Copyright ©2002, New Light Beulah Baptist Church, all rights reserved.  These documents may be freely used for private purposes, and included in your own genealogy. However, this document is copyrighted and may not be sold, nor given to anyone who may attempt to derive profit from same.

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