History of the Roanoke Church
Generously transcribed and Submitted by Nancy
Bray, thanks Nancy!
(Information obtained from M. M. Jenkins, (oldest living member) Mrs. Viola
Adams, Mrs. Ruth Mann and Old Church records. Compiled by Edith Denny and Monta
The first place of worship known to the Roanoke Community was a schoolhouse
located in the cemetery. It also served as a place of worship for Gum Lick
Baptist. This was during the time of the circuit preacher who made his rounds
When Roanoke organized Charlie Barlow built the first church on land donated by
George W. Shipp, Sr. in 1881. Gum Lick Baptist continued to meet in the
schoolhouse until they built their church in 1882.
The church built in 1881 was lighted by kerosene lights hung from the ceiling
until the early twenties when the church purchased carbide lights. When the
second church was built in 1929 the carbide lights were used in it until
replaced by electric. Two stoves heated the first structure.
The pews in the first church were made by someone in the community. There were
long benches in the middle with shorter ones on the side. There were two doors
and two aisles. The men sat on the left and the women on the right.
Millard Angel was the first one to teach music to the congregation followed by
Charles Justice, and Cecil Bennett. Others have taught music to the congregation
but not as a special class as these men did. Mr. George W. Shipp, Sr. led our
singing with his spec case or knife. His daughter Mrs. Mary S. Beagle played the
pump organ for years at the church.
Few marriages were performed in the early church as most marriages were
performed at home. Minturn Jenkins recalls that during a revival in 1896 held by
Marion Pfanstiel that after services one night he asked the audience to be
seated. A couple walked in from Harrison County and were married. Bro. Pfanstiel
also married in the same year. In 1896 George Gennett and Fanny Earls were also
married in the church. There were no more church weddings until December 25,
1908 when Brother Brown in a double ceremony married Joseph Porter and Lizzie K.
House, and Walter Wilson and Mae Phillips. Several weddings were held in the
second church, erected in 1929 by M. L. Hutcherson.
Services in the early church were held Saturday P. M. Sunday A. M. and Sunday P.
M. once a month. When we went to half time the Saturday P. M. services were
discontinued. Sunday School was held Sunday P. M. at 3:00 P. M. Later changing
to Sunday A. M. with no Sunday School during winter months. Our yearly business
was held on Thanksgiving Day. When we selected to look elsewhere so the yearly
meetings held on Thanksgiving Day were discontinued.
Several ministers and evangelists have served the congregation well. To mention
a few with the advancement of the church, James H. Moore taught school in the
schoolhouse while Roanoke was having services there. In the early twenties he
came back and held a revival. James McCann, the only Timothy of our church, held
a revival for us. In May 1943 we went to half while W. W. Winters was pastoring
the church. In June 1949 under Walter Steever we went to full time. While John
Snyder was pastoring in 1955 our building needed repair, and the furnace needed
to be replaced. The funds were transferred to the building fund and used for
that purpose. We seemed to rest on our laurels for a while until Tom Mefford in
October 1967, started the ball rolling again. One-tenth of all the offerings,
unless designated for another purpose, went to the building fund, and all fifth
Sunday offerings went to the fund. In 1969 Brother Bob Jones came to us for a
second pastorate of the church. We talked of building but needed faith and
encouragement to carry us on. On April 16, 1972 we had our last services in the
old church that had been our place of worship for 43 years---5 years short of
the 1881 structure.
When the decision to build was agreed upon Robert Simon the architect drew the
design for our new sanctuary and Donald Logan constructed the building which we
are so proud of and give God the glory for it.
We hope to make other improvements as time goes on and also hope to maintain the
true purpose for which this church was built. May we ever "continue
steadfast in the apostles doctrine and fellowship, the breaking of bread, and
prayers." (Acts 2:42)
Our present Elders are, M. M. Jenkins, Overton Ashcraft, Virgin Mann, Donald
House, and Clyde Jenkins.
Deacons are: Claud Moore, Roscoe Wells, Donnie Moore, Bill Moore, Leon Wells and
Elders and Deacons who have served the church in the beginning and later years:
(not listed with the present officers).
Elders: Thomas Jenkins, George Wells and John Denny.
Deacons: Joe Moore, James P. Moore, Tom Beagle, Ben Porter, W. S. Porter, Sr.,
John T. Ravenscraft, George W. Shipp, Sr., Vernon House, Clifton House, Chester
Wells, John Shipp, Joe Porter, W. C. Jenkins, Randall Antrobus, Jess Bruce and
A partial list of former ministers from 1881-1973. The Christian name was not
obtainable to some. The * denotes more than once.
______Limerick, ______Todd, Marion Pfanstiel*, Quill York, ______Jones,
_____McPherson, _______Brown, Sam Foley, ______Robinson, Peyton H. Canary, E.C.
Cloyd, M. L. Hutcherson*, John S. Chambers, Roy S. Davis, Steve Dowd, C. Marion
Railey*, P. M. Runner, Cecil Bennett, Clark Winkler, W. W. Winter, Carl S.
Miller, Stanley Wilson, Walter Steever, Kenneth Ferguson, Robert Jones*, John
Snyder, Carroll McDade, and Tom Mefford.
Evangelist through the years, with an * denoting more than one time. Sam Foley,
______Robinson, ______Henry, J. H. Moore, R. Paul Arnold, Steve Dowd, J. J.
Langston, John S. Chambers, J. R. Bachman Sr.*, J. R. Bachman, Jr.*, Roy S.
Davis, C. Marion Railey*, Elbert Winkler*, Woodrow Perry, Ernest Dodson, Laverne
Taylor, W. W. Winter*, Richard Burton, Robert Steward, Paul Holderman, E. Ray
(Cotton) Jones, Wayne Spangler, M. H. Wright, Ralph Byers, John Snyder, Roy
McClain, James McCann, Robert Jones, Sherwood Evans, and James Smith*.
Roanoke Christian Church--Centennial Edition, 1981
Courtesy of The Falmouth Outlook
Submitted by Nancy Bray
100 Years of The Roanoke Christian Church
The first place of worship in the Roanoke community was located in the Roanoke
cemetery. This building had a dual purpose: a school house and a church
building. The pews were benches from logs. Needless to say, there was only one
room that was heated by an old wood stove. By the door on the right hand side
stood a home-made table on which stood a water bucket with a gourd dipper.
In 1881 when Roanoke Christian Church was established, the new building was
located on land across the road from the cemetery. This land was donated by
George W. Shipp, Sr., and the first church was built by Charlie Barlow.
This building was a very plain building. When one entered the building there
were short rows of seats to the right and to the left to sit upon, with longer
benches in the middle. The women went to the right side to sit, and the men were
seated on the left. Visitors occupied the middle row. The building was heated by
two wood stoves: one on either side at the front of the building. The lighting
was furnished by kerosene lamps that hung from the ceiling, and one lamp was on
the organ, the musical instrument that was used in the services.
Church services were held only once a month; on Saturday evening, Sunday
morning, and Sunday evening. However, most of the time in the winter months
services were only held on Sunday morning.
Music had always played an important part of the church service. Millard Angell,
Charlie Justice, and Cecil Bennett taught music classes to the congregation. Mr.
George W. Shipp, Sr. was the song leader in the early church, and he used his
spectacle case or his knife as he directed.
Few marriages were performed in this church for during this period in history
home weddings were very prominent. Also during this time many people walked to
church, rode horseback, drove horse and buggy, came in a wagon ( if the family
was large) or came by sled.
In 1929 it was decided to replace the old church building. Brother M. L.
Hutcherson, a former minister, was the building contractor. While this building
was under construction, church services were held in the Roanoke school building
which had been moved from the cemetery area to a place across the road from the
church. During this building period, John S. Chambers and Anson Doud were the
ministers. The preacher for the dedication services was Brother Runyan.
This building had double front doors with small front entrance way. In the
entrance way on a small table sat a drinking cooler and on the wall behind it
was a paper cup dispenser. The pews for this church were bought at Georgetown,
Ohio; these pews were very beautiful for these were the first manufactured pews
ever used. There were two rows of pews and the women still sat on the left and
the men on the right. However, this tradition soon gave way to a new
innovation-families sitting together. The building used carbide lighting until
in the 1940's when electricity became aailable. The curch was heated by a coal
furnace that was located in the basement.
Sunday school classrooms were located in the basement, but the adult class
always met in the auditorium. Later on other classed had to find place upstairs;
even the entrance way had to be used for a class.
In the beginning church services were held once a month--on Saturday evening,
Sunday morning, and Sunday evening. On the other Sundays in the month, Sunday
School and Communion were held at 3:00 p. m. on Sunday afternoons. In 1943 when
W. W. Winters was the minister it was decided to have church services two
Sundays a month-the first and third Sundays. The Saturday evening services were
discontinued at this time. Sunday School and Communion were still held on the
other Sundays at 3 P. M. Then in 1949, under the direction of Walter Steever, it
was decided to have church services every Sunday.
The annual Congregational business meeting was held on Thanksiving Day.
Sometimes this was al all day affair with everyone bringing a basket lunch.
Later the meeting was changed to the last Sunday in October.
The musical instrument in this church was a piano. The pianists were young
ladies in the congregation who were willing to used their talents for the Lord.
A choir became a part of the church service. Ministers (or their wives) directed
Weddings were performed in his church. Youth groups, seasonal programs, VBS, and
the Ladies Aid were a very important part of the church work during those days.
The church was becoming very conscious of the need to support missions and a
mission program was begun.
When John Snyder was minister in 1955, a need was seen for a parsonage, so this
fund was started. The fund grew but when the building needed repairs, when the
furnace had to be replaced, ( with an oil one), and other small incidentals
occurred the money from the fund was transferred into a "building
fund". It wasn't until 1967 when Tom Mefford was minister that this
building fund became active again. At that time it was decided that one-tenth of
all the offerings (unless designated for another purpose), and every fifth
Sunday offering would go into the building fund. By this time a future need for
a larger building could be seen.
Brother Bob Jones came back to the church for a second ministry in 1972, and
with encouragement from him, with much faith and prayer a third building was
launched. In May of 1972 the old church building was torn down, and a basement
for the new building was dug by Bennie Robbins. A contractor, Donald Logan, was
During the building period, the church met for worship in the Morgan School gym
until cold weather. During the winter months, the Morgan Christian Church
graciously allowed the congregation to use its building on Sunday evenings.
Sunday School was at 6 p.m. and church services at 7 p.m. Bob Jones was the
minister at that time.
February 18, 1973 was the first day for worship services in the new building's
basement. The basement was so large and so beautiful; there was a large meeting
room, 4 Sunday School rooms, a kitchen, and 2 rest rooms along with closet
April 1, 1973 services were held for the first time in the auditorium. Carpeting
covered the floor, new pews were in place, and beautiful new lighting fixtures
added much to the beauty of the sanctuary. Pulpit furniture, communion table and
chairs, and the piano were a part of the old church furniture. Many of these
articles were given to the church as memorials. A cross was made by Grover
Groves for the new building. It was placed on the left front wall. A beautiful
scene was painted for the baptistry. God had been so good to Roanoke; blessings
untold with so many answered prayers.
July 15, 1973 was a day long to be remembered-this was a day the new building
was dedicated to God as a tool to be used in His service so everyone could come
to know God as Lord and Christ as Saviour of all mankind. The speaker at this
dedication was John Snyder.
Another highlight day was July 4, 1976 when the mortage burning ceremony was
held. This was the last day of the revival with James Smith as evangelist, and
David Brown was the minister.
Many programs of service for the glory of God are in the program of today's
Roanoke Christian Church. These programs include: Mission support for 6
missions; a monthly calling program; visitation and services to two personal
care homes each month; a youth program; choir with Martha Moore as director; the
Willing Workers ladies group that meets once a month; Childrens Church for ages
3 through junior high that meets every Sunday evening from September through
May; VBS each summer; a sports program of softball in the Pendleton Church
league; and participation in the Christian Service camp program at Northward.
Eudell Hall, Brooksville, Kentucky, became minister in 1977 and continues as
minister. (as of 1881)
The elders are Virgin Mann and Clyde Jenkins. Serving as deacons are: Randall
Moore, Leon Wells, Roscoe Wells, Bill Moore, Donnie Moore, Roscoe Antrobus, and
The first Timothy of the Church was James McCann; in 1979 Bennie Robbins was
ordained as the second Timothy of the Church.
The following is a partial list of the ministers who have served the Roanoke
________Limerick, ______Todd, Marion Pfanstiel*, Quill York, ______Jones,
________McPherson, ______Brown, Sam Foley, _________Robinson, Peyton H. Canary,
E. C. Cloyd, M. L. Hutcherson*, John S.Chambers, Steve Doud, Roy S.Doud, Roy S.
Davis, C. Marion Railey*, P. M. Runner, Cecil Bennett, Clark Winkler, W. W.
Winter, Carl S. Miller, Stanley Wilson, Walter Steever, Kenneth Ferguson, Robert
Jones*, John Snyder, Carroll McDade, Tom Mefford, Steve Hooks, David Brown, and
Eudell Hall. (We sincerley hope that we have not ommitted anyone.)
The first name for some of these was not obtainable.
* Denotes the minister served more than one ministry with the Roanoke Christian
This compilation of church history has been the great work of Mrs. Rosmond Mann.
"To God be the glory" for a century of service by the Roanoke
Christian Church. May Jesus be praised.