By Fred Engle
There are two Baptist churches in Madison County with the color red in their names. Both are named for the communities they serve.
The community of Red House was named for a stage coach line which served that area. There was a red brick house that was located on the stage line. The arrival of the railroad in 1884 put the stage coach out of business.
The Baptists in that area attended church at Tates Creek Baptist on Boonesboro Road. In 1892, Tates Creek church decided to begin a mission at Red House.
In 1907, some 59 members of Tates Creek asked to withdraw and start a Baptist church at Red House.
The first four deacons at Red House were Robert Caldwell, Ross Dozier, J.B. Stevens and Frank Stewart.
The original church building was on Otter Creek in the village. In 1945, Eleanor and Ray Wilson gave the church five acres at the top of Red House hill. It is here that the church is presently located.
The church has grown and grown, and the original building has been rebuilt and added to several times.
Red Lick Baptist was founded in 1802 on the upper side of what is now Red Lick cemetery. It looked out on the beautiful Red Lick valley.
Trustees in 1815 were Bright Berry Gentry, William Haggard, John Kindred and Richard Parks. It is uncertain which came first, the church or the cemetery. The oldest readable tombstone is for Jane Tunstall (1742-1822).
The area is mentioned in the French Tipton papers, a collection of the EKU Archives. Over the years, the church belonged to many associations, including the Landmark Baptist Association. The church faded out until revived by W.C. Younce in 1950.
Here then are two county churches whose histories are tightly woven into Madison’s heritage.
PUBLICATION NOTE: Readers are reminded that a compilation of some 60 Richmond Register articles from over the last 40 years by Dr. Grise and myself are now available in the paperback book “Madison’s Heritage Rediscovered.” Combined with relevant photographs selected from the EKU Archives by my granddaughter, Kathryn Engle, who edited the volume, this book is available for $19.99 plus tax.
Autographed copies may be found at the Richmond tourism office (Irvinton) on Lancaster Avenue, ClearSight Optometry on the Martin Bypass and Baldwin CPAs on Main Street. Autographed copies are also available by calling Kathryn Engle at 859-893-0947 or 623-1150.
These books make excellent birthday presents for family or friends. Keep in touch with out of town family and friends by sharing this gift of home.