Dallas in Dallas County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
Mount Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church
Mount Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church, affectionately known as “The Rock,” and established in 1864, is the oldest African American Church in Dallas County. The church was named for the mountain peak from which Moses viewed the promised land. Reverend Robert F. Butler, a white circuit preacher, and a few enslaved people gathered in June 1864 under an elm tree in the White Rock settlement on Billie Wilburn’s farm. The founders held church services despite their enslavement, including John Huffman, Dan Howard, Sam Fowler, William Phifer, Tobe Howard and Jack Saunders.
After slavery was abolished, Freedmen bought land, built homes and established churches and schools. Mount Pisgah’s membership grew and congregants traveled up to five miles to attend services. The congregation met under a brush arbor and by June 1888 voted to purchase land along the waters of White Rock Creek. The first building was a long, narrow frame structure. Picnics were held on the grounds and baptisms took place in various ponds, located near White Rock Union Graveyard, at present-day Coit at North Central Expressway, and at Sowell’s Farm at present-day
As membership continued to grow, the church built a new structure on this site, which was completed in 1945 and constructed of rocks hauled by church members from Jacksboro. By the early 1980s, the congregation outgrew their location and purchased a church complex on Webb Chapel Road. Through partnerships with community and worldwide groups, Mount Pisgah has helped others by providing scholarships, services to homeless populations, school supplies, assistance to food banks and funding for a water well in Ghana. Located on South Sherman Street in Richardson, Mount Pisgah continues to grow while it supports and influences its community and lands abroad through its faith.
Marker is property of the State of Texas
Erected 2020 by Texas Historical Commission. Marker was cast in 2019.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Abolition & Underground RR • African Americans • Churches & Religion • Settlements & Settlers. A significant historical year for this entry is 1864.
Location. 32° 56.335′ N, 96° 48.196′ W. Marker is in Dallas, Texas, in Dallas County. Marker is at the intersection of Preston Road (State Highway 289) and Spring Valley Road, on the right when traveling north on Preston Road. Touch for map . Marker is at or near this postal address: 14000 Preston Road, Dallas TX 75254, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. White Rock Chapel (approx. 0.7 miles away); Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church (approx. 1.1 miles away); Mount Calvary Cemetery (approx. 1.6 miles away); Addison State Bank (approx. 2.1 miles away); The Hockaday School (approx. 2.7 miles away); Demonstration of the First Working Integrated Circuit (approx. 2.9 miles away); Hamilton Park Community (approx. 3 miles away); St. Mark's School of Texas (approx. 3.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dallas.
Regarding Mount Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church. The marker was unveiled during a celebration on September 5, 2020.
Credits. This page was last revised on September 9, 2020. It was originally submitted on September 8, 2020, by Steven T Vanderhill of Dallas, Texas. This page has been viewed 302 times since then and 123 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on September 8, 2020, by Steven T Vanderhill of Dallas, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.