In the early 1900’s, three Baptist churches existed in our
area, “Old First,” in McLewis, “Evergreen Baptist” in Duncan Woods, and “Burton
Baptist” in Winfree Community, but none in the Orange oil field to serve the
spiritual needs of the people here—the farmers, oil field workers and their
families. On August 3, 1922, at a prayer meeting and singing in the home of Mr.
and Mrs. J. Cay McGill, our church was organized as a mission of the Burton
Baptist Church of Winfree.
At a Sunday meeting, Brother W.R. Brown, pastor of First Baptist Church of Orange, preached the first sermon and helped organize the church with election of officers and petitioning the Southeast Texas Baptist Association for membership. Brother J. L. Sargent was called as pastor.
Worship has been held in three different buildings, the
little frame building across from the present Orangefield Post Office, and the
old Harmon home off Highway 408. The most unique facet of that first sanctuary
was the baptistery—a trap door or “hole in the floor” as some called it, led to
it. The podium would be removed, the trap door opened, and the baptistery
The second building was made of cement blocks and was designed and built by members. It was erected between the present sanctuary and the parsonage. It was a source of pride to the community and a tribute to God’s glory.
In 1972, we again broke ground for the $120,000.00 educational building and the old cement block church building was torn down. Merle Greer Construction Company of Pineland, Texas erected the pre-fab educational building. The interior was finished by the men of the church in less than two months under the leadership of Roy Franks. November 26, 1972 was our first Sunday in the educational building. The church has had a total of twenty-four pastors. As one member said, “I don’t know if they were all good pastors or not, but evidently one was real neat and tidy. He cleaned house one day and burned all the old records.”