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February 4, 2013 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Churches: Buckingham Baptist


Buckingham Baptist Church. Photo by Joanne Yeck.

One of the nineteen churches mentioned in Thomas Baldwin’s Gazetteer of the United States (1854) Buckingham Baptist Church was founded in 1771, and its first pastor, the popular Rev. Chastian (1741-1823), contributed greatly to its growth for several decades, ultimately serving the church for fifty-three years. In the survey written in 1937 for the WPA’s Virginia Historical Inventory, author Rosa Garnett Williams apparently confused the founding date of the Baptist church with its assumption of the parish property, offering a somewhat disjointed, yet nonetheless interesting, version of the “merging” of the two bodies:

Buckingham Baptist Church was first known as the Church of England, built in the early 1700s. At one time it ceased to be a place of worship and was used as a Tavern. In the year 1771 the Baptists took it over, and since that time it has been known as the “Buckingham Baptist Church,” the first Baptist church established in this county. It is a very quaint old building with a gallery. . . . The Baptists had no deed to this property until 1898, when Professor Boatwright purchased a tract known as the “McKenna Tract.” The Church building was on this tract. Mr. Boatwright gave a deed to the church, spring, cemetery and several acres of land besides, to be used as the Baptists saw fit.

Note: In the photo above the section of the church in the foreground is the original Anglican Buckingham Church incorporated into Buckingham Baptist Church.


Leave a Comment
  1. Jason Barth / Nov 17 2020 9:44 pm

    Found this page through some research. Rev Rene Chastain is my 6x g-grandfather.

  2. Kimberly / Apr 17 2013 10:07 pm

    Joanne – Do you know which church a Rev. John Ayers pastored in 1830? He married two of my ancestors, but the wedding announcement didn’t say which church it was.

    • Joanne Yeck / Nov 18 2020 7:16 am


      A new comment brought me to your question from 2013! I don’t know which church Rev. John Ayres was connect to 1830. If you discovered the answer, please share the information here.



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