Monday, July 20, 2009

Bells Mines History

There was a Bells Mines Cumberland Presbyterian Church organized in 1830 in what is now Crittenden County. It continued through 1846 when the log house church building burned along with all its contents, including the Sunday School library and also the church records. Without these early records there is no way to give the exact data concerning to this first church.

Construction on the new church building that is in the picture was started in 1865. The progress of building was very slow and continued for several years. The building was constructed according to donations of labor and money. All this time people had to worship in vacant store houses or other houses at the mines.

Finally on Nov. 30, 1891 the new Bells Mines Cumberland Presbyterian Church was dedicated. The Bells Mines community held services in this building until January 1998, when it closed due to low membership.

Soon after it was closed vandalism and thieves starting taking their toll on the old historic church house. They stole the doors, carpet, anything they could carry out. The remaining members knew something would have to be done. So they decided to raze the old building in December of 2002. Gone was the Bells Mines Church house that had stood for 111 years.

In 2005 a new history marker was placed at the sight of the old church. Hopefully it will remind passers-by the history of the church and the area. The marker in the picture reads:
Bells Mines was derived from the Bell family who owned and operated the Bells Mines Coal Company located nearby.

There has been a Cumberland Presbyterian Church at this location since the early 1830s.

Original log church burned in 1846, New foundation was laid in 1864 by J. M. Lamb. New Church was completed in 1885. Dedication held Nov. 30, 1891. Sermon by Rev. M. E. Chapel.

Services were held continually until Jan. 1998. Building razed Dec. 2002.

2 comments:

Merritt Family Past said...

Belles Mines had a post office and quite a town at one time. 1850 censu showed Hoods Creek area as Belles Mines Post Office.

Merritt Family Past said...

Alexander King of Hoods Creek area, had a P.O. address of Belles Mines. around (1850) The Land sets where the present day Rock Quarry is. Mail was delivered weekly if weather permitted.