Church and Family History Research Assistance
for Primitive Baptist Churches in Logan County, Illinois



Lake Fork (of Salt Creek) Church was organized on January 20, 1827, at the home of James Turley, by Elders William Kenner, Hiram Bowman, and Phillip Stevens. The charter members were James Turley, Charles Barney, James Scott, Carter Scroggin, Agnes Turley, Margaret Turley, and Phebe Scroggin. James Turley, the pioneer settler in the township, was chosen the first clerk.

Pastors included Elders Hiram Bowman (twice), Charles Harper, Michael Mann (for over 30 years), John H. Myers, and James H. Ring. Elders L. O. Davis and John C. Montgomery preached often for the church after 1889. Elders Charles Harper, Stephen Hukill, Hiram Bowman, Benjamin F. Davis, Michael Mann, John L. Ludwick, Joseph Richardson, Phillip Stevens, John B. Moore, and James H. Ring were all members of this church.

The church united with the Sangamon Association, and hosted the annual meeting in 1835, 1847, 1857, 1865, 1880, 1883, 1888 (held at friend Abram Lucas' grove), and 1898 (held at friend Charles Anderson's grove).

The earliest records state that the church met "at Lake Fork," but do not give an exact location. In March 1828, the church agreed to purchase the house where Boston Finders now lives. In April 1828 the church voted to "make a subscription for the purpose of raising corn to pay for said meeting house." In June 1831 the church selected a one-acre site near a spring on Bro. Copeland's land, which he deeded to the church on which to build a meeting house. In November 1831 the church agreed to sell the old house and use the proceeds toward building a new meeting house. In April 1841 the church agreed to move the meeting house to some convenient place to answer the purpose of a meeting house and a school house. In July 1856 the church agreed to build a new meeting house (the third); it was sufficiently completed to have the seats and pulpit installed by November 1857. The church met in the Copeland School during the winter of 1856-1857. In July 1868 the church agreed to move this meeting house to a place near the residence of Bro. Jacob L. Mann and wife, who in January 1870 gave the church a deed for the new plot of ground. It was located on the south side of the intersection of three roads in Section 1 of Township 17 North.


Ashhurst, Baldwin, Barney, Benson, Billings, Birkes, Bowman, Broadway, Burks, Burns, Campbell, Cast, Cheatham, Clayton, Collins, Copeland, Core, Curtis, Cutright, Davis, Deatherage, Dotson, Edwards, Elder, Finders, Foster, Friend, Gibson, Girtmon, Harper, Houston, Hukill, Landis, Lane, Lee, Lucas, Luckett, Ludwick, Lykins, Lynn, Mann, Martin, McLean, Metcalf, Milham, Mills, Moore, Peale, Piper, Ralston, Rankin, Reaves, Reed, Richardson, Ring, Roberts, Robertson, Scott, Scroggin, Shiver, Simpson, Skinner, Stevens, Taylor, Tipton, Tolbert, Turley, Turner, Turpin, Wade, Ward, Welch, Wheeland.


Big Grove Church was organized, at Atlanta, on August 14, 1830, with fourteen charter members, by Elders Hiram Bowman and Michael Mann. The church united with the Sangamon Association in September 1833, at which time it reported 17 members. Its meetings may have been held over the county line into McLean County, part of the time.

In July 1836, Elder Hiram Bowman moved his membership to Henderson Church, and in October 1837 Elder Michael Mann is named as moderator. Minutes (from a film of the part of the church which favored missions) dated August 1838, record the choice of a pastor who was favorable to the modern mission system. It is believed that this caused a division in the church, but little is known of the details of the trouble. Big Grove Church was still active in 1856, as several members were dismissed at that time to organize a new church at Highland Center, Iowa.


Atchison, Badger, Biggs, Bobbitt, Bowman, Cartwright, Dickerson, Francis, Hedges, Hoblit, Houchins, Howell, Johnson, Leggett, Long, McCormick, Miller, Rogers, Smith, Stevens, Vanwinkle, Wilcox (very incomplete list due to loss of records).


Lebanon Church was located in a scenic spot southwest of Lincoln - down Cemetery Hill and across a covered bridge at the bottom of the hill, then a short distance, turn right, and go about two miles on the Rocky Ford Road to the church. The church was organized in 1853, but the church records have not been located. Five members were dismissed in May 1853 from Lake Fork Church to go into the constitution, viz.: William Rankin, Jane Rankin, David P. Lee, Sarah Lee, and John Reed.

This church became a member of the Sangamon Association, soon after it was organized, and remained part of that body as long as the church existed. It hosted the association in 1882, 1894, 1901, and 1914.


Baldwin, Bateman, Baughn, Bond, Bowman, Campbell, Case, Coffman, Core, Dorman, Farris, Fleming, Green, Harris, Hendell, Humphrey, Lee, Lucas, Miller, Montgomery, Osborne, Piper, Putnam, Rankin, Reed, Rosebrough, Smith, Sparks, Trunton, Vann (very incomplete list due to loss of records).


Minutes of the Sangamon Association; records of Lake Fork Church.


Elder Michael Mann departed this life, May 31, 1866. He was born in Pennsylvania, October 4, 1790, removed to Ohio when very young, was married October 5, 1809, became a Baptist at about that time, and commenced preaching shortly afterward, and moved to Sangamon Co., Ill., in 1828; remained near Springfield about eight years and then moved to Logan Co., where he remained until his death. He has been pastor of Lake Fork church more than thirty years, and that church has lost a father in the gospel. His firmness in the doctrine of Christ, and his fatherly care for the welfare of the saints generally, and prompt attendance has not been surpassed, in the judgment of any who knew him. He leaves a widow and eight children, a number of grandchildren, with many dear friends to mourn their loss; but we mourn not as they who have no hope. His daily walk and conversation have secured to him a name that will be remembered in many years to come. - Elder John H. Myers (copied from the Signs of the Times, Vol. 34, No. 19, p. 151, October 1, 1866.)


1826, John Hoblit and his son Samuel in the company of Michael Mann, a Baptist minister came to Illinois on a prospecting tour, crossing Ohio, to Indiana and on to then Sangamon County, (now Logan County), Illinois. They had but two horses, and took turns walking. After selecting a location, they returned to Ohio. It was said that son Samuel in later years weighed some 350 pounds.

In 1827, the Hoblits removed from Ohio to Illinois.

16 August 1827, Michael bought 132 acres, for 450.00 Dollars, from Joel Peterson in Greene County, Ohio.

October 1827, Michael purchased some 80 acres of property in Logan County, IL, then Sangamon County, IL.

Per the "History of Early Settlers of Logan County", prior to 1840, Jacob L. Mann, has listed his place of settlement as Lake Fork Township in 1827.

Michael moved his family to Logan County, Illinois, about 1827-28, which was then Sangamon County. Logan County was formed in 1839.

Michael Mann and Sarah Bowman Lucas, were married 12 July 1858, at Lincoln, Logan County, Illinois, by Mr. Clark, Justice of the Peace, and Witnessed by the Clerk Mr. John Jenkins. Marriage License is on file in the Logan County Courthouse, Logan County, Illinois.

Apr 1839, the first County election was held in Logan County, with Michael Mann, elected to the position of Probate Justice, which he held for about six months. He has his name inscribed on the stone on the South side of the Lincoln Court House building. He came to
the Lake Fork area abt 1828, with his sons, Abraham L, John L., Jacob L, Henry L., and Philip, and seven Daughters. He founded a church at Big Grove, near present-day Atlanta.

Son Philip is still a mystery. No mention of him anywhere. Looking in Fulton Co. Illinois, a Philip Mann bought some land there in 1849. forty miles from Logan County. This Phillip could have been a nephew or a brother. Once they reached Logan County in 1827 there was no longer any record or word of a Phillip in the family records or census records.

Michael's Church was a Predestinarian, or Hardshell Baptist congregation. They didn't allow any scandal or strife in their group. It was a very close tight knit group to belong to in those days. He had two congregations, one at Latham, and another at Big Grove, near Atlanta, which he established in 1830. There were fourteen members at that time, from which John Hoblit was chosen deacon, and Samuel Hoblit, clerk. Above all, he was a very respected person and carried a lot of influence in their community.

Some of the heirlooms, which still exist from Michael Mann's era, consist of a Civil War medal from Jacob L. Mann, and a Fife and a fiddle of 1830s vintage, which belonged to Jacob L. Mann also. Jacob hid the Fife and Fiddle in the barn because Michael did not allow any dancing or music among his children, since his beliefs were so strong in his Church. Neil Mann has possession of the Fiddle and Medal, of which the Fiddle has chew-marks on it from mice in the barn chewing on the fragile wood.

Michael purchased 953.70 acres of land from 10-08-1827 to 06-12-1837 for $1192,in Logan County, IL.

Michael willed his property to his son, Jacob L. Mann, which in turn willed it to his son, Michael J. Mann. Michael J. then willed the homestead to his daughter, Susie Inez Mann and her husband Noble K. Usherwood. When Susie died, in 1957, at the age of 61 years, Noble remarried and sold the entire homestead and removed to Missouri.

The homestead had passed thru four generations of Mann's before it was lost. August of 1995, all that was left was a farm implement shed someone had erected. All of the other buildings were gone.

As a footnote to the conditions in Logan County during 1830/31 winter, the snow fell from early winter to late spring to the depth of about three feet or more, making life very difficult for the livestock and chickens, plus not to mention getting fire wood to heat with during this period.

During the winter of 1836 was called "The winter of the Sudden Freeze". It came on in a matter of fifteen minutes time in which the livestock froze right where they stood, and the chickens froze to their roosts. The Indians were saying this hadn't happened for the last 50 years, that they could recollect.

The Circuit Rider-VOL 28-No.1, Page 18, January 1996
Sangamon County Genealogical Society
Ferries and Mills: Petitions and License
Board of Supervisors Proceedings: Commissioner's Court, Sangamon County
State of Illinois: Commissioners Court
Sangamon County, March Term 1830

Ordered by the Court that Michael Mann, Henry Demint and Samuel Wilson be authorized to keep a Ferry across the Sangamon River at the place called Chapman's Ford, on the payment of Two dollars Last and that they be allowed the following rates (to wit):

For each man & horse-------------------------12 1/2
For each footman-----------------------------06 1/4
For a single horse---------------------------06 1/4
For every head of meat cattle----------------03
For every head of sheep-----------------------02
For a road wagon & team----------------------50
For a two horse wagon or Pleasure Carriage---25

When the river overflowing its banks and before Sunrise and after sunset, double these

A true copy from the record.
Attest: Charles R. Matheny,
Clerk: Sangamon County, Illinois.
March 1830

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