From The Past … Baptism At Locust Knob

Lawrence Montgomery

Now the building stands a part of history, perhaps a reminder to those who pass of all the services, the gospel meetings, the singing, the baptisms, the love, and, yes, even the funerals in the one hundred plus years of that congregation.

The meetinghouse was built in 1893, and I suppose my interest lies in the fact that my great grandfather, Brady Montgomery, was one of the two men who laid the stone foundation. He was an elder there, and, in the picture, he is baptizing Opal Barker. As near as I can count there are at least 67 … in the picture. You can tell by the way the people dress that the picture is quite old.

It has been the home congregation for many of my relatives from its beginning up to the end. My mother and father grew up close by and attended services there until 1929 or 30 when they moved to the Clarksburg area.

When I was very young, Dad took us back to a gospel meeting, and I can still hear the second gear whine in Dad’s old 1930 Chevrolet as we climbed the hill up to the building. At that time, there was no electricity, but the oil lamps around the wall gave a soft and peaceful atmosphere to the services. There never was any water at the building, therefore, no inside restroom, but that seemed of little importance to those who came to worship.

My wife and I, along with our first child, moved to Ohio in 1953, as did many others, for economic reasons, but it has always been good to come back home to West Virginia for a visit. If I were to write a book, there would be many pages recounting the beautiful memories I have while growing up.

I have a sister living in Clarksburg. On some of our visits, we went down to Locust Knob for services, and I felt the same love that I felt as a youngster. It was very uplifting and encouraging to see that man of faith, Okey Mick (a second cousin) past 90 years old, conducting the Bible study, leading the song service, or whatever was needed.

There is an old song: “Give me that old time religion,” and that is what is surely needed in the church today. It is men like yourself and others who write articles for the West Virginia Christian to help keep the church in the way our Lord means it to be.” –3905 Co. Rd. 31, Galion, OHIO 44833.

(Editor’s note: We are indebted to brother Lawrence Montgomery for sending us this old photograph, along with his letter, about the Locust Knob church of Christ in Gilmer County.)

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