Who Are We?
The Robeson Baptist Association was officially organized at Raft Swamp Baptist Church
November 1, 1883. Twenty-six churches united to form a new association. Most of these
churches had formerly belonged to the Cape Fear Association, which stretched from
Cumberland County to New Hanover County. Elder W.T. Jordan preached the introductory
sermon and Elder D. Johnson was pastor of the host church.
The names of the Churches which formed the original Robeson Baptist Association
were Ashpole (Now Fairmont), Antioch, Back Swamp, Big Branch, Bear Swamp, Clybonsville, Cape Fear, Cheerful Hope, Ephesus, Hog Swamp, Long Branch, Lumberton, Mount Elim, Mount Moriah,
Pleasant Grove, Pine Grove, Pleasant Hill, Providence, Raft Swamp, Red Springs,
Saddletree, Spring Hill, Ten Mile, Tolarsville, White Pond and Zion’s Tabernacle.
Throughout the generations, the association has experienced a number of changes. Some of the congregations that established the association no longer exist. Several other churches were part of the establishment of mission churches.
The association has grown from those 26 churches to 62 congregations. The churches now cover five counties in both North and South Carolina.
The Lord has truly blessed the Robeson Baptist Association over the last 140 years. God will continue to bless the association as long as it remains committed to its mission. That mission is to help churches as they to share the gospel of Jesus Christ to those who don't know Him, in the region throughout our nation and our world.
Robeson County Baptist Churches
by Sam West
The Baptist Churches of Robeson Co NC, have a heritage unlike the main stream of most Southern Baptist Churches. While, the Southern Baptist Churches claims their sole lineal descent from the "Separate Baptist" who arose out of the Great Awakening, our lineage is found to be much different. In fact, our lineage is more of the "Primitive Baptist" than anything else. Originally, our Baptist in England and Wales embraced the "Particular" principles of the London Confession of Faith. This Confession was considered as being very Calvinistic in view. Later, after coming to America, we were under the Philadelphia Confession of Faith, which was modeled after the London Confession. The churches of the Carolinas also fell under the Philadelphia Confession.
During the Revolutionary War period of our Nation's history, there were attempts to combine the fellowships of the Particulars, by that time call Regulars, and the Separates; however, the attempts failed. The Separates refused to commune with the Regulars, because they felt that were stuck up, and the Regulars refused to commune with the Separates, because they felt that they were unruly in their worship. Other attempts were made, but a union of the two did not actually take place until the 1780's. After the union, still small issues had to be dealt with, and it was not until after 1830, when a final division was made over the issues of Missions.
The Baptist of Robeson Co NC can trace our Baptist Lineage back to the Welsh Baptist, via the church in Wales, via the church in Delaware, via the church on Pee Dee in South Carolina, via through one her daughter churches, and then through missionaries from there, who came to North Carolina and constituted the first church here in Robeson Co NC. From that first church here, others sprang forth, and in Biblical terms, became fruitful and multiplied. The churches here were first under the watchful eye of the old Kehukee Baptist Association, 1769; then the Neuse Baptist Association, 1794; and then the Cape Fear Baptist Association, 1805. Later, in 1883, the churches in Robeson Co NC withdrew from the parent association, and formed the Robeson Baptist Association.
There were, and are, other Baptist Churches here in the Robeson Baptist Association. For genealogical purposes, I have only listed those constituted 1900 or before. I am the Historian of the Robeson Baptist Association; therefore I have this list. There are, however, two other Baptist Associations here, that I do not have a list of their churches. These are the churches of the Burnt Swamp Baptist Association, which consist of predominantly Native American Baptist Churches, and the churches of the Lumber River Baptist Association, which consist of predominantly African American Baptist Churches.
Regardless of the association of which belong, we all have common ground by having received Believer's Baptism, through faith in Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, and through embracing the Great Commission. By His Grace, we all have received enlightenment, and thus are Heirs of the Kingdom.
Those Baptist Churches of the Robeson Baptist Association, which were constituted in 1900 and before are as now follows:
ANTIOCH, originally Burnt Islands, constituted in 1817, reorganized and name changed in 1842. Located in eastern Robeson Co NC in Wishart's Township.
BACK SWAMP, originally Mount Pisgah, constituted in 1839. Was located in central Robeson Co NC in Back Swamp Township, now closed.
BARNESVILLE, originally Spring Hill. Constituted in 1871. Located in southern Robeson Co NC in Sterlings Township.
BEULAH, constituted in 1899. Located in southeastern Robeson Co NC in Wishart's Township.
BLOOMINGDALE, constituted 1890. Located in southern Robeson Co NC in Orrum Township.
CEDAR GROVE, constituted in 1882. Located in central eastern Robeson Co NC in Wishart's Township.
CENTERVILLE, constituted in 1886. Located in south central Robeson Co NC in Back Swamp Township.
CLYBONVILLE, constituted in 1867. Formerly known as Clybourne Church. Located in western central Robeson Co NC in Lumberton Township.
EBENEZER, constituted about 1844, now extinct. Once located in southern Robeson Co NC.
FAIRMONT FIRST, was either constituted in 1792 according to church records. Saddletree was the mother church. Located in south central Robeson Co NC in Fairmont Township. The 1792 origination date seems to be contradicted by new evidence of that time period. The current evidence places the origination date at 1801.
GREAT MARSH, constituted in 1872. Located in northeastern Robeson Co NC in St. Pauls Township.
HOG SWAMP, constituted as a Free Will in 1843, reconstituted as a Regular in 1869. Located in south central Robeson Co NC in Smyrna Township.
JACKSON SWAMP, constituted in 1879, dissolved in 1904. Located in Wishart's Township in eastern Robeson Co NC. Forerunner of Singletary Cross Roads and Zion Hill Baptist Churches.
LEBANON, constituted in 1833, dissolved in 1844. Located near Lumberton, NC. After dissolution most members went to Antioch, Back Swamp and Saddletree Baptist Churches.
LONG BRANCH, constituted in 1876. Located in south central Robeson Co NC in Britt's Township.
LUMBER BRIDGE, constituted in 1835, originally known as Providence. Located in northern Robeson Co NC in Lumber Bridge Township. This is probably the only Baptist Church in Robeson Co NC, whose origins are found in the Scottish Baptist, and not the Welch Baptist.
MAXTON, FIRST, constituted in 1891, originally known as Maxton Baptist Church. Located in western Robeson Co NC in Maxton Township.
MOUNT ELIM, constituted in 1832. Located in southern Robeson Co NC in Orrum Township.
MOUNT MORIAH, constituted in 1852. Located in western Robeson Co NC in Alfordsville Township.
OAKTON, constituted in 1899. Located in southern Robeson Co NC in Orrum Township.
ORRUM, constituted in 1827, originally known as Big Branch. Located in southern Robeson Co NC in Orrum Township.
PARKTON, constituted in 1897. Located in northern Robeson Co NC in Parkton Township.
PLEASANT GROVE, now extinct. Was located in Rowland Township in southern Robeson Co NC.
PLEASANT HOPE, constituted in 1895. Located in southern Robeson Co NC in Back Swamp Township.
RAFT SWAMP, constituted in 1854. Located in western central Robeson Co NC in Raft Swamp Township.
RED SPRINGS FIRST, constituted in 1881, originally known as Red Springs Baptist Church. Located in northwest Robeson Co NC in Red Springs Township.
ROWLAND FIRST, constituted in 1892, originally known as Rowland Baptist Church. Located in southwest Robeson Co NC in Rowland Township.
ROZIER, constituted in 1897. Located in north central Robeson Co NC in Saddletree Township.
SADDLETREE, constituted previous to 1788, was closed for a number of years and now has reopened in the Saddletree community of north Robeson County.
TEN MILE, constituted in 1873. Located in north central Robeson Co NC in West Howellsville Township.
TOLARSVILLE, constituted in 1874. Located in northeastern Robeson Co NC in West Howellsville Township.
WHITE POND, constituted in 1872. Located in southern Robeson Co NC in Fairmont Township. Now closed.
ZION'S TABERNACLE, constituted in 1859. Located in eastern Robeson Co NC in East Howellville Township.