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First Baptist Church Historical Marker

Contributed by Eleanor Colson
Historical Marker 8574
Navasota, Texas
Erected 1977
SE corner of Church St. and Holland St.; Navasota.

In the spring of 1860, six men formed this church, one of the first of any faith in the railroad town of Navasota. By fall there were 52 members, and growth continued. Services were held in the town's schoolhouse, and then in a Methodist church, until the Baptists received a site as a gift from the Houston & Texas Central Railway, and built a small frame sanctuary about 1872. A permanent edifice of native stone was started after Mrs. A. E. Baten, wife of the pastor, drew plans in 1889. Funds came from members and non-members, sometimes as donations of cattle, and a 46' x 67' x 37' x 67' stone building with a steeple was completed in 1890. By 1925 more room was needed; a 2-story annex was constructed. Although a new, larger sanctuary was erected in 1955, the 1890 building is still used. In 1969, it was converted into a fellowship hall, and after a disastrous fire the next year was restored in 1971. The congregation-- now numbering more than 900 members-- founded and financed one local mission that became self-supporting, and now underwrites another. During the church's first 116 years, it has been served by 35 pastors.

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