It’s been quite a year, and I hope it’s been good for everyone. I’m so grateful for all the love, and wish you all the best for 2022. Due to popular demand, I’m sharing our ten most viewed posts during the year, and there were some surprises.
Situated on a large plantation among thousands of acres of managed Longleaf Pine near Pavo, Bethel Primitive Baptist Church is among the oldest congregations in this section of Georgia, constituted on 2 September 1826. Elders Benjamin Manning, Matthew Albritton, Henry Melton, and Deacon William A. Knight were the original Presbytery. Charter members were Melus and Sarah Thigpen, Archibald and Luander Strickland, and Henry C. and Sarah Tucker. Thigpen served as the supply pastor until 1828, when the Reverend Matthew Albritton was called to the charge of Bethel.
I am unsure as to the date of construction, but the church is of a vernacular style widespread in Georgia in the late 19th century. The church was unpainted at least as late as 1968. The grounds are beautifully maintained and an historic cemetery is adjacent to the church, serving as the final resting place of many area pioneers.
The original owners of this home stayed in an Italian villa on their honeymoon, and upon returning to Quitman, hired Neel Reid to build something of that style. The style is quite rare in rural Georgia, and an asymmetrical version such as this one is even rarer. The columns were added to give the house a Neoclassical appearance when it was purchased by Dr. Wallerstein in the early 1960s. The house is presently for sale; perhaps a serious admirer of Neel Reid’s work could buy it and remove the columns. Thanks to Chuck Ramsey, who is the listing agent for the house, for sharing the history.
Quitman Historic District, National Register of Historic Places