Church and Family History Research Assistance for
Primitive Baptist Churches in the State of Rhode Island

Rhode Island was one of the original thirteen states of the Union. Churches were established here long before the American Revolution.

We have not researched the historical accuracy of all of these churches, nor can we vouch for their soundness in the principles of the Baptist faith, or the validity of their constitutions.


NEWPORT (1638)

Newport Church was organized (according to David Benedict's History of the Baptists) by Dr. John Clark and wife, Mark Lukar, Nathaniel West and wife, William Vaughan, Thomas Clark, Joseph Clark, John Peckham, John Thorndon, William and Samuel Weeden. Dr. Clark served as their pastor until his death in 1676. He was followed by Elder Obadiah Holmes, John Callender, Edward Upham, and others.


Second Newport Church originated in 1656, when twenty-one persons broke off from the first church, and formed themselves into a separate body. Their names were William Vaughan, Thomas Baker, James Clark, Jeremiah Clark, Daniel Wightman, John Odlin, Jeremiah Weeden, Joseph Card, John Greenman, Henry Clark, Peleg Peckham, James Barker, Stephen Hookey, Timothy Peckham, Joseph Weeden, John Rhodes, James Brown, John Hammet, William Rhodes, Daniel Sabear, and William Greenman.



Tiverton Church, on the east side of this State, was formed in the adjoining town of Dartmouth about 1685; the members at first lived in Dartmouth, Tiverton, and Little Compton. Their first minister was Hugh Mosier, and next to him was Aaron Davis. This was the seventh Baptist church formed on the American continent. In process of time its seat was removed from Dartmouth to Tiverton.




WARWICK (1725)





EXETER (1750)

WARREN (1764)

Warren Church was constituted October 15, 1764. One of the constituents was Dr. Manning, then residing in the town; most of the other members had previously belonged to the old church in Swansea, only three miles distant. Mr. Manning took the care of this church at its beginning, and continued with them till 1770, when he removed with the College to Providence.

BRISTOL (1811)

Bristol Church was organized in 1811, and at first was composed of 23 members. Elder James M. Winchell was the first pastor.

Associations in Rhode Island included Warren (1767), with four churches, viz., Warren, Haverhill, Bellingham, and 2nd Middlesborough.

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