Whitesburg KY
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Mostly cloudy

Old Indian Bottom Church is busy

The Old Indian Bottom Regular Baptist Church building is located by Hwy. 7 South at the Frog Pond just above Blackey. The church was established in 1810 off of the arm of the Roaring Springs Primitive Baptist Church in Roaring Springs, N.C. This church is still active today with a big new church building, but they still have the historical one preserved.

Our present church building was built in 1902 and it is in fairly good condition. This is the third building to house the old church.

We still have singings the first Tuesday of each month with a potluck supper afterward. It all starts about 6:30 p.m. Everyone is welcome. The food is wonderful and so is the spirit.

We also have several special events each year. We had a Blackey Senior Citizens dinner scheduled for Oct. 24, a Thanksgiving dinner is set for Tuesday evening, Nov. 6, and a special singing with Joe Grim and his singers for Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. And then we have our Christmas show scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 20, at 7 p.m. with Ron Short and the Roadside Theater.

So you can see this old church building is a busy place.

The old church building holds so much history for so many people. It’s nondenominational.

We have been caretakers of the old building since 1998 and we have kept a guest book for visitors to sign. We have filled three full books so far, so I thought it might be of interest to our community and county to learn what a treasure we have here in our midst and let them know how many people from other states and other countries have visited Letcher County in the last nine years.

Visitors have signed the guest book from many places including:

Indiana – Seamore, Edinburgh, Charlestown, Millisboro, Indianapolis, Madison, Gary, Wawaka, Fort Wayne, Kendellville;

Ohio – Williamsburg, Hillsboro, Franklin, Columbus, Tip City, Batavia, Paulding, Gallipolis, Wheelsburg, Toledo, Cedarville, Springfield, Brookville, Troy;

Texas – Richardson, Linville, Dennison, Fort Worth, Quinton, Houston;

Florida – Temple Terrace, Tampa, St. Petersburg, Port Charlotte;

California – Bakersfield, Valsil, Los Angeles;

Massachusetts – Martha’s Vineyard;

Illinois – West Chicago, Modine;

Virginia – Richmond, Oaktown, Oakwood, Norton, Fort Washington, Newport News, Big Stone Gap, Grundy, Bristol, Haysi, Cedar Bluff, Richland, Pound, Clintwood;

New York – Warsaw, New York City, Brooklyn, Staten Island;

Vermont – Grouton;

South Carolina – Charleston, Honaker, Abbyville;


Oklahoma – Calcard, Tishomingo, Oklahoma City;

New Mexico – Clea, New Harmony;

Washington – Sea Cove;

Minnesota – St. Paul, Cloverdale, Pine City;

Michigan – Lansing, Detroit, Dover, Holland;

Wyoming – Dayhoit;

Iowa – New Candon;

Kansas – Botkin, Dodge City;

Arkansas – Clarksville;

Washington, D.C.;

Oregon – Brookville, Courallis;

Pennsylvania – New Wales; Wisconsin – Porta; New Hampshire – Colbolt;

Alaska – Cooper’s Landing;

West Virginia – Beckley, Huntington;

Germany – Holbolt; Scotland – Glasgow; China – Fin Pen; England – London;

Ireland – Linia Lia.

It is almost unbelievable that so many people from so many places come to visit this old building hidden away on a hillside in Letcher County.

We talk about getting people to come to Letcher County as tourists. We already have them coming. We need to work with the communities and the Letcher County Fiscal Court to improve our county until they will want to come back. We need more motels and restaurants.

The old church building is now owned by Jim and Ann Whitaker of Blackey. It has no ties to the Letcher County Historical Society nor does it receive any support from them or the Letcher County Fiscal Court. It is operated entirely by visitors’ donations.

We have been offered a $1,000 matching grant from Echo Outpost to buy paint and lumber for repair and restoration. We plan on having an old-time working soon. If anyone out there would like to volunteer to paint or help restore the old building, call Ray at (606) 632- 3777.

We would like to invited everyone to come to the singing or just come and visit and sit awhile. It is such a beautiful, peaceful place and it is truly a hidden treasure.

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