Owen County Church Records

Emmaus Baptist Church

Contributed By: David Webb

Emmaus was organized June 24 1821 and was located in Owen County Kentucky near the junction of state 1669 and 325. Emmaus and 2 other churches in 1851 formed the current Dallasburg Baptist Church located in Wheatly. The church was located behind Elwood "Packy" Thompson farm at 2190 highway 325. 


Emmaus Church was organized on June 24, 1821 and located on the present Highway # 325. The exact location is on the Packy and Katherine Thompson farm and stones from the old cemetery are still visible today. Members of this church were some of the founding fathers of Dallasburg, organized in 1851. We are fortunate to have the old Emmaus Church record book in the Dallasburg Baptist Church Museum.

The following article appeared in the News Herald and was written by Mr. L. D. Brock, a Wheatley resident and member of Dallasburg Baptist Church The date that he wrote the article is unknown. (Church was in current Owen County Kentucky near Wheatley somewhere close the junction of 1669 and 325)



In the earliest days of county history the preachers were very powerful, even more powerful than the politicians themselves, sometimes. Poorly paid and subjected to a lot of hardships, their labors bore fruit and the early preachers of all denominations came to be looked upon as half-mythical characters who knew everything knowable.

The custom of turning folks out of the church may not be dead yet, but it is rapidly dying in most places. Old minutes preserved by more than one church in Owen County reveal that such was the practice with most congregations, led by their saintly and well meaning pastors. Emmaus Baptist at Wheatley was no — exception. In presenting the following brief paragraphs gathered after much research, some names have been omitted lest embarrassment might result to some descendent of the ones mentioned. The information taken from early Emmaus records is typical of the happenings following the organization of the church. The lines are exact, as copied by the church clerk, Samuel Arnold, great-great- grandfather of the late Paul Arnold and sisters, Misses Mary Kate and Sue V. Arnold.

(Spelling and punctuation are the same as found in the old records)

Brother John Cersey was chosen temporary moderator, and on the next meeting in August, 1820, Bro. James Baker was chosen for moderator.

“Forth Saturday in Sept., 1820, the church met and after worship proceeded to business. 1st -Sister Polly Orr joined by letter. 2nd it is agreed that any member of the church shall be liberated to sing and pray and exhort at any convenient time and take a text if they think proper.

October 1820 Brother _____ laid a charge against himself for getting angry and using ill language which was laid over till the next meeting.

Fourth Saturday in September 1821 The church laid a charge against brother ________ for neglicting our monthly meeting and improper conduct, is continued until next monthly meeting.


Forth Saturday in July, 1824 a charge lodged against brother ______ for intoxication using profane language and offering to fight for which the church appointed brother James Neal to labor with him and cite him to attend the next meeting. On the second Saturday in August, 1824 1st the reference against brother

____ was taken under consideration and he neglected to hear the church was excluded.


 Forth Saturday in Apr, 1826 brother______ being charged with disorder for keeping a fiddle in his house.

On and on goes the record, states Mr. Brock, and though all the names can not be listed, a few who attended the old church about 1826 were as follows:


James, Samuel & Moses Baker                        Anny Ogden

John & Samuel Arnold                            Joseph & Hulda Smith

Samuel & Rutha Hunt                                             Katherine Shelton

Elizabeth & Nancy Arnold                             Dicey Gibson

William & Sousannah Morgan                          Peter Akers

Elijah _(excluded)                                            Fanny Branham

Folly Orr (decest)                                                  Sampson Neal

Elisha & Margaret Udaily                            John Brown

Benjamin & Sally Kemper                             William ____(excluded)

Vivian Allnutt                                                      John Montgomery

Folly Allnutt                                                        William Stivers

Rhoda Jones                                                       Letha DiHenger

William May                                                       F Walker

James Neal (decst)                                        Perlina Burke

J. Conny May                                                     Farthany Thomas

Ophelia Sanders                                                  Meichisedec Gibson

Polly Rentfroe

Nancy May

and many more