Providence Church
15010 W. Howardsville Road, Lena, Illinois 61048

(In the community known as Howardsville, West Point Township, Stephenson County, Illinois)

This property was obtained by the Primitive Baptists, on August 10, 2016. Restoration work at the site is now complete. Please contact us for further information.

History of the Providence "Old Stone" Church

The details of the constitution of Providence Church are presently unknown, except that the obituary of Joseph Wilson state that he was a charter member. It is possible that the church was formed by members being dismissed from Mt. Pleasant Church near South Wayne, Lafayette Co., Wisconsin, in the 1850's. However, it is also possible that the church was organized by the fourteen members who were dismissed from Yellow Creek Church (at Howardsville) in 1844, as the minutes of the Rock River Association state that a new church had been formed in the same neighborhood. Yellow Creek church had been organized with seventeen members, in October 1841, by Elder Mead Bailey, and by 1843 had grown to 35 members before dismissing these 14. The names of messengers include some who are known to have been members of Providence church later.

The obituary of Bro. Murray Howard states that during the time the Providence church was without a meeting house, they met in his house. The obituary of Bro. Ward B. Howard states that he united with the church in 1868, and was baptized by Elder Isaac N. Vanmeter, and a few years later helped build the stone church on one corner of his farm, and named it Providence. The cemetery had been used at least twenty years before the stone church was built.

Photos showing the restoration of the Old Stone Church.