History

Blackstone Baptist Church, established in 1876, has a rich history. For well over a century, this church has ministered in this community. The town of Blackstone was originally known as Blacks and Whites, after two taverns that operated on the stagecoach line. The church and community have both gone through many changes, but the church continues to work to be the presence of Christ in the community.

This church grew out of Walker’s Meeting House, which was the first Baptist Church in Nottoway County, and the second Baptist Church south of the James River in Virginia. Walker’s Meeting House was established in 1769, and by 1771, it was the largest Baptist Church in Virginia, with 260 members.

Some of the former members of Walker’s Meeting House formed Mercy Seat Baptist Church about four miles west of Blacks and Whites in a community known as Forkland Post Office in 1839. One hundred forty-three members from Mercy Seat left to establish Cool Spring Baptist Church in 1843. Cool Spring called Dr. Thomas W. Sydnor as pastor in 1847.

Cool Spring Baptist Church was an integrated congregation, with 85 black members and 54 white members. In 1872, those two groups decided to form two churches. The black members formed Spring Hill Baptist Church, and the white members formed her sister congregation, known at that time as Bellefonte Baptist Church.

Bellefonte began meeting in the house of the pastor, Dr. Sydnor, on August 6, 1876. They built a building and met there for the first time on November 5, 1876. On August 7, 1887, the church voted to change its name to reflect the new name of the community: Blackstone.

Blackstone Baptist Church broke ground for the present sanctuary on March 11, 1907. The sanctuary was dedicated on June 19, 1910. Dr. William Hatcher from Richmond spoke at the dedication of the sanctuary, but he felt that it was not right to dedicate the sanctuary before it was paid off. He passed the offering plate three times that night, and when the debt was finally paid off, he went ahead with the dedication service.

The church added on a Sunday School building in 1938, and it was dedicated on November 3.
The pastors who have served Blackstone Baptist Church are:

Dr. Thomas White Sydnor –                        1876 – 1890
Rev. Milford Filmore Sanford –                  1890 – 1894
Rev. Edward Basset Morris –                      1895 – 1896
Rev. Charles Linwood Corbitt –                  1896
Rev. James Randolf Doan –                         1896 – 1901
Rev. Warren Mosbey Seay –                        1901 – 1903
Rev. William Bonnie Daughtry –                1904 – 1905
Rev. Lacy Milton Ritter –                             1906 – 1912
Rev. Lewis Peyton Little –                            1912 – 1917
Rev. Herbert Arthur Willis –                       1918 – 1928
Dr. Reuben Edward Alley –                         1929 – 1935
Rev. William Winston Parkinson –            1936 – 1940
Rev. Frank Carter Hawkins –                      1941 – 1958
Rev. Roy Conway Wood –                            1958 – 1962
Rev. Thomas Owen Moak, Jr. –                  1962 – 1966
Rev. David Elliot May –                                1966 – 1968
Rev. Donald Paul Anderson –                     1969 – 1970
Rev. James Randolph Elrod–                      1971 – 1973
Rev. Harold Lewis Crute –                          1974 – 1979
Rev. John David Cochran –                        1980 – 1983
Rev. Charles Stuart Hoffler –                     1983 – 1988
Rev. Thomas Henry Collins –                    1989 – 2002
Rev. George C. Hughes –                             2003 – 2008
Rev. Robert Fitzgerald Brown –                2010 –