Earliest Church

Historical Marker #1234 in Stanford notes the location of what is believed to be the earliest congregation in Lincoln County, Stanford Presbyterian Church.

Benjamin Logan first came to Kentucky from Virginia in 1775. After a return trip, he settled permanently with his wife, children, and slaves in Lincoln County the following year. Logan established a stockade station (St. Asaph) and was made sheriff of Lincoln County.

Several years later—the exact year is difficult to determine—Logan's sister, Mary Briggs, donated land for a Presbyterian church to be constructed. A small log church was built, but, due to the congregation's growth, the church soon required a new location. In 1802, a larger log church building was constructed on land Benjamin Logan donated for the new structure. This location was to also include a cemetery. It was called the Buffalo Springs Presbyterian Church and was located adjacent to the present cemetery.

A new church building was constructed in 1838 at the congregation's present location on Main Street. This building was severely damaged in a storm in 1887. The present building was erected shortly thereafter and dedicated in 1888.

One of the most famous preachers to speak at the Stanford church was Rev. David Rice. Rice was a pioneer of Presbyterianism in the state. He came from Virginia to Kentucky in 1783, and lived near Danville for a time. Along with being a minister, Rice was also an educator and politician. He helped start Transylvania University, was a noted emancipationist, and was part of the convention that framed Kentucky's first constitution.

Images

Main Street in Stanford

Main Street in Stanford

Stanford's bustling Main Street is shown in this postcard photograph. The Stanford Presbyterian Church building's steeple can be seen on the far left side of the image. Courtesy of the Kentucky Historical Society. View File Details Page

Main Street in Stanford

Main Street in Stanford

Stanford Presbyterian Church is located on Main Street. This postcard shows part Main Street looking west. Courtesy of the Kentucky Historical Society. View File Details Page

Rev. David Rice

Rev. David Rice

Rev. David Rice preached at the Presbyterian Church in Stanford. Rice was also an emancipationist. Courtesy of the Library of Congress. View File Details Page

Transylvania University

Transylvania University

Rev. David Rice helped start Transylvania University, pictured here. Courtesy of the Kentucky Historical Society. View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Tim Talbott, “Earliest Church,” ExploreKYHistory, accessed May 23, 2017, http://explorekyhistory.ky.gov/items/show/569.

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