Tates Creek Baptist Church

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Tates Creek Baptist Church
Tates Creek Baptist Church is located in Kentucky
Tates Creek Baptist Church
Tates Creek Baptist Church is located in the US
Tates Creek Baptist Church
Nearest city Richmond, Kentucky
Coordinates 37°50′49″N 84°19′6″W / 37.84694°N 84.31833°W / 37.84694; -84.31833Coordinates: 37°50′49″N 84°19′6″W / 37.84694°N 84.31833°W / 37.84694; -84.31833
Area 2.1 acres (0.85 ha)
Built 1851
Architectural style Greek Revival
MPS Madison County MRA
NRHP Reference # 88003333[1]
Added to NRHP February 08, 1989

In May 1775 the first recorded religious service took place in Fort Boonesborough. The Tates Creek Baptist Church organized in 1783 and met in a stone building around Shallow Ford until it burned down around 1850. Some of the members gave some land to the church, and the present building now occupied was completed in 1851. In January 1786, Virginia passed the first act favoring the purposed separation of Kentucky from Virginia. In September 1786, a convention was held in Danville to determine if it was expedient to constitute Kentucky as a state. Several members of this church served as delegates to this convention. Tates Creek Baptist Church is listed on the National Register of Historical Places.[2]

Rev. Andrew Tribble[edit]

The founding pastor of the Tates Creek Baptist Church, now on Boonesborough Road, Tribble was a friend of Thomas Jefferson and may have helped shape his political philosophy.

The monument, placed by the North Carolina-based Baptist Church Preservation Society, highlights the persecution of Tribble and other Baptists suffered in colonial Virginia, when only members of the Anglican clergy were allowed to preach.

The Baptists' petitions are said to have gained a receptive hearing from such founding fathers as George Washington, Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson, and played a role in the statute of religious freedom drafted by Jefferson and adopted by Virginia after the colonies gained independence.

While in Virginia, Tribble pastored a church near Thomas Jefferson's estate, Monticello. Records indicate that Jefferson sometimes attended the church's services and at least once a business session. About 10 years before the Revolution, the future president invited Tribble home for Sunday dinner, after which the preacher asked Jefferson what he thought of the denomination's democratic form of government.

All church members, including men, women and children, had equal votes.

Jefferson, who later drafted the Declaration of Independence, is said to have remarked it was "the only form of pure democracy that then existed in the world" and "it would be the best plan of government for the American colonies."

According to Tates Creek church historian Edith Ratliff, Tribble came to Madison County from Virginia and helped found the church between 1783 and 1785, and organized the church in 1786.

According to stories handed down over the years, Tribble often made mention of Jefferson in his sermons, Ratliff said.

Tates Creek Baptist Church originally was located at Shallow Ford, a rural site between Tate's and Jack's creeks. Among its members was Green Clay, father of Cassius Clay, James Estill and William Irvine[disambiguation needed]. At least three, and possibly all, of Madison County's five delegates to Kentucky's first constitutional convention in 1786 were members of Tates Creek Baptist Church, according to Ratliff's history of the congregation.

The church's first building burned in 1850 and was rebuilt as a brick structure at its current site on Boonesborough Road in 1851. A second wing, patterned after the original, was added in 2000.

Tates Creek Baptist's minutes indicate it was the parent church to both First Baptist churches in Richmond, as well as Baptist churches in Waco, on Red House Road and on Stoney Run Creek.

Tribble was Tates Creek Baptist's pastor until 1819. He died in 1821 and is buried off Colonel Road, south of the church.

In addition to erecting the monument, the preservation society also did restorative work on the stone wall that surrounds Tribble's grave site, said local historian James Neale, a descendant of Tribble.[3] [4] [5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ Tates Creek Baptist Church History By Edith Ratliff
  3. ^ Bill Robinson [1] Published: July 16, 2009 07:55 pm
  4. ^ [2] The Kentucky Encyclopedia [In the print edition this entry appears on pages 602 - 603]
  5. ^ [3] The Thomas Jefferson Encyclopedia