Primitive Baptist Church and Family History Research Assistance
for Chautauqua County, Kansas


Bethlehem Church was organized in October 1865, in Saline County, Illinois, by members dismissed for that purpose primarily from Wolf Creek Church. (The records of Wolf Creek Church of October 1865 show that the following members were dismissed by letter to constitute a church (called Bethlehem) at the Texas school house: James Odom, Joshua Reeder, R. Reeder, Thomas Cox, Sinclair Butler, J. L. Gwaltney, John R. Gwaltney, Eliza Defur, Mary Reeder, Nancy Gwaltney, Elizabeth Gwaltney, and Ruth Butler.)

Bethlehem Church became a member of the Muddy River Association, which was composed of churches in that area. Bethlehem Church moved as a body to Kansas, in 1874, and afterward united with the Elk River Association, of Kansas. Elders Isaac Moore, Nathan Reeder, and Thomas R. Pittman were all pastors of this church. Elder Thomas Reeder was also a member here. Elder Nathan Reeder was ordained in 1884 and served as pastor for over 40 years.


Brown, Hedges, Iverson, James, Michael, Moore, Pittman, Reeder, Winchell (very incomplete list due to loss of records).

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