Near Union in Union County, South Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
1.5 miles SW stood the original Fairforest Baptist Church. The members, led by the Reverend Philip Mulkey, came from North Carolina to Broad River about 1759. In 1762, the church moved to Fairforest where, as the first Baptist church in the up country, it established other churches. During the American Revolution, it was in a Tory controlled area.
Erected 1975 by Congregation of Lower Fairforest Baptist Church and S.C. Baptist Historical Society. (Marker Number 44-4.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion • Colonial Era.
Location. 34° 41.01′ N, 81° 42.546′ W. Marker is near Union, South Carolina, in Union County. Marker is at the intersection of Cross Keys Highway (State Highway 49) and Police Club Road, on the left when traveling east on Cross Keys Highway. Lower Fairforest Baptist Church is located at the intersecton of Cross Keys Highway and Lower Fairforest Church Road. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Union SC 29379, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 10 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the Fair Forest Plantation / Emslie Nicholson House (approx. 1.2 miles away); Some Gave All (approx. 3.3 miles away); Padgett’s Creek Baptist Church (approx. 4.6 miles away); Cross Keys House (approx. 5.1 miles away); Union County Jail (approx. 5.2 miles away); Union Community Hospital (approx. 5.2 miles away); Union Mill (approx. 5.2 miles away); John Pratt (approx. 5.2 miles away); Union County Revolutionary War (approx. 5.3 miles away); Union County Confederate Monument (approx. 5.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Union.
Also see . . .
1. Rev. Philip Mulkey (1732-1801). Rootsweb posting on the life of Philip Mulkey. (Submitted on August 17, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.)
2. Grave of William Walker Marker. Marker located in Spartanburg, SC dedicated to the grave of William Walker, a member of Lower Fairforest Baptist Church. (Submitted on August 17, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.)
3. William Walker. William Walker (May 6, 1809 – September 24, 1875) was a Baptist song leader, shape note "singing master", and compiler of four shape note tunebooks. (Submitted on August 17, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.)
1. About Philip Mulkey
Rev. Philip Mulkey was born May 14, 1732, near Halifax or Roanoke, NC. He was raised Anglican, but was baptized by Rev. Shubal Stearns around Dec. 25, 1756, after a remarkable conversion. Mulkey was called to the ministry in Stearns’s church in February and ordained in Oct. 1757. He served as pastor of Deep River Church, NC (1759 or 1760) when he came to Broad River, SC, and then removed to Fairforest in 1762. Mulkey preached throughout the surrounding parts in North and South Carolina.
During the Revolution, nothing is known of him except that he was probably a loyalist or carried non-resistance far. By his wife Ann Ellis he had David, Jonathan, Sarah, Philip, Martha; the last known ministerial service performed by him was as one of the presbytery constituting Cheraw Hill Church in 1782. He was excommunicated in 1790 and the churches warned against him for adultery, perfidy, and falsehood long continued in. In 1795, he was still engaged in the "Practice of Crimes and Enormities at which Humanity Shudders." Nothing further is known of him, but as his son, Jonathan Mulkey, appears in 1809 as a minister of Buffalo Ridge Church of Holston Assoc., TN, the family probably moved to that state. (Source: South Carolina Baptists by Leah Townsend, p. 125.)
— Submitted March 9, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South
2. Backcountry Baptists
Backcountry Baptists, influenced by the Great Awakening before migrating to South Carolina, were not dependent upon an educated clergy. They believed in letting any man preach who was called by the Holy Spirit. They also developed an effective technique for ministering to the scattered settlements in the backcountry. Once a church was established, it became the mother church for the area. For example, the Fairforest Church on Fairforest Creek (Union County) under the leadership of the Reverend Philip Mulkey organized at least nine branches before the Revolution. By 1772 this ingenious organizational plan soon resulted in twenty-four organized churches and forty-nine meetinghouses, most of which were in the backcountry. (Source: South Carolina: A History by Walter B. Edgar, pg. 183.)
— Submitted March 9, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on November 7, 2008, by Michael Sean Nix of Spartanburg, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 2,286 times since then and 45 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on November 7, 2008, by Michael Sean Nix of Spartanburg, South Carolina. 2, 3. submitted on August 19, 2012, by Charles R. Robbins, Jr. of Rock Hill, South Carolina. 4. submitted on November 7, 2008, by Michael Sean Nix of Spartanburg, South Carolina. 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12. submitted on November 8, 2008, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina. • Brian Scott was the editor who published this page.