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August 7, 2014 / Joanne Yeck

Mount Tabor Baptist Church


Mount Tabor Baptist Church, Photo by Joanne Yeck

My ancestor, Norborne Eugene Harris, and members of his family attended Sharon Baptist Church in northeastern Buckingham County. His sister, Amanda (Harris) Bolling, helped establish Mount Tabor Baptist Church near Arvonia. In 1886, it joined Sharon in the James River Baptist Association.  Rev. Robert L. Wood wrote about Amanda’s contribution in A History of the James River Baptist Association 1832-1982:

About 1880, Mrs. Amanda Bolling began teaching a group of children Bible stories on Sunday afternoons.  They met in a one-room log school house. The class grew in number and more teachers were added until there was an organized Sunday School. William Hall was the first superintendent. A revival was held in a brush arbor adjacent to the school house with the result that Mount Tabor Church was constituted in 1886 and a building was completed in 1887.

 Mount Tabor organized a Woman’s Missionary Society in 1896, one of the first eight in the James River Association. The first WMS president was Mrs. Pinkie Skidmore, daughter of Mrs. Amanda Bolling.

 Also, in 1896, a field of churches was formed with Mount Tabor, Mulberry Grove, Sharon and Goshen.  This field continued to exist until 1951 when Mulberry Grove left the field. The three remaining churches continued on the field until February, 1971, when Goshen left the field.


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  1. Danny Newton / Aug 19 2014 5:51 pm

    A number of my Newton relatives are buried here, including my Uncle Howell Newton and Frank Newton.

    • Joanne Yeck / Aug 19 2014 7:29 pm

      Danny, Thanks for adding your comment about the Newton family. Joanne

  2. Colin Randolph Skidmore / Aug 7 2014 8:43 pm

    Patt’s right, Joanne – this posting did indeed make my day! It’s always a pleasure to see my great-grandmother Pinkie and my great-great-grandmother Amanda mentioned in connection with the founding and early operations of this church. Do you know if there are any photographs of the original 1887 building? And do you know what exactly the Woman’s Missionary Society did?

    Thanks for another great posting!

    Colin Randolph Skidmore

    • Joanne Yeck / Aug 8 2014 7:55 am

      Colin, I don’t know of any photos of the original building. Perhaps a Slate River Ramblings reader will respond. As to the Woman’s Missionary Society, I nave no particulars; however, according to a short history of what is today Woman’s Missionary Union: “During the meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention in Richmond, Virginia, in May 1888, a group of women delegates from 12 states gathered at the Broad Street United Methodist Church and organized the Executive Committee of the Woman’s Mission Societies, Auxiliary to Southern Baptist Convention.” Learn more at “History of WMU”:

  3. Theresa Bryant / Aug 7 2014 2:10 pm

    This is the church that my grandparents on my father’s side (Willie and Annie Davis) as well as my parents attended (John and Sarah Davis). Many memories of this church and Homecoming will be August 24th.

    • Joanne Yeck / Aug 7 2014 2:23 pm

      Theresa, thanks for the details about the Davis family and for the date for Homecoming. Joanne

  4. Patt F. Freedman / Aug 7 2014 12:18 pm

    Cousin: Love this picture you took of Mt. Tabor!! Also, telling the active role of my Great Grandmother, Amanda Harris Bolling. I added the cemetery to “Find A Grave” over the last couple of years – and a friend added the pictures of the markers.

    You made my day and Colin’s too. Patt

    • Joanne Yeck / Aug 7 2014 12:22 pm

      Thanks, Cousin Patt. I, too, like this angle on the church. Joanne

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