Ghent Baptist Church

The organization of the Ghent Baptist Church is recorded in the oldest of three record books as follows:  "April 5, 1800 a day of fasting and prayer for the constitution of a Baptist Church at Port William.  The business was proceeded to and the church constituted by William Hickman and Joshua Morris on the Doctrine and Discipline of the Holy Scriptures.  The church is constituted of ten members, viz., Benjamin Craig and Nancy his wife, John B. Barnard and his wife, John Ramey and Catherine, his wife, Mary Lindsay, Elizabeth Bledsoe, Sary Price, and Robert Scanland's Cloe."  Joshua Morris, who served as the first pastor, was received by letter into membership immediately after the organization.  Along with him were received twelve other men and women, six of whom were Negroes.  Port William, which was a village located near the mouth of the Kentucky River, is now the city of Carrollton.

After meeting in the homes of the members for some months, the first log meeting house was constructed by male members of the congregation on land owned by Isaac Bledsoe in McCool's Bottom.  Several houses of worship were erected during the early years of the church, and in 1814 the Baptist Church of Port William became known as the McCool's Bottom Baptist Church.

The present church building located on U. S. Highway #42 in Ghent, Kentucky, was built in 1843 on land donated by John Scott, the second pastor of the church.  In May 1844 the owners of the steamboat Pike presented her bell to the church.  A suitable belfry was to be built to house it.

In October 1844 the old meeting house and lot were sold for $100 each and six of the old benches were given to Brother James L. Griffith for the school house in his neighborhood.  The church name was again changed in 1845 when it became the Baptist Church of Christ at Ghent.  At that time the membership was comprised of 200 people, 50 of whom were Negroes.

At one time there was a cemetery on the church grounds, but the gravestones were all removed prior to the year 1936, and the ground was used for other purposes.  The three books of church records are in excellent condition and are stored in a bank vault on Carrollton, Kentucky.  The Reverend Floyd N. Baker now serves as pastor.


by Jean Young Houston. Originally from the National Genealogical Society Quarterly of June, 1977.  In addition to these paragraphs, Ms. Houston included several pages listing early members.