On Dec. 3, 1860, eighteen people met at the home of William S. Freshour for the purpose of organizing a Baptist church for the Centertown community. Before the church was started, people had their memberships at Sardis, in Elston, MO and in California, MO churches. A building was started immediately but because of the war, it was not finished until 1870.

Lumber used in the first church was chopped from virgin trees and finished by hand. Except for one carpenter, the work was done by men of the church.

First services were held in the church before the floor was laid or the ceiling finished. After the building was completed, each man of the church brought lumber and made a pew. Later, when the membership grew, a carpenter was hired to make additional pews. At the beginning, candles were used for lighting. Later, wall lamps with reflectors replaced the candles.

This building was used until 1898. At that time, Bro. William S. Freshour gave the land on which the present building was constructed.

  • 1896 – A revival was held by Brother John Youngblood. Thirty-eight people were baptized.
  • 1898 – Concord Association met at Centertown.
  • 1906 – The old church building with furnishings was sold for $125.00. This same year the pastor’s salary was raised from $250.00 to $275.00 per year.
  • 1909 – New sidewalks were built around the church for $36.45.
  • 1910 – The lighting system was again changed. This time carbide lights were installed.
circa 1910
  • 1911 – A heating plant was placed under the church and the entire cost was $135.00
  • 1913 – The church voted to go to half-time preaching. A revival was held that year by Brother L. V. Arvin, pastor of the California church. Thirty-seven people were baptized.
  • 1916 – Concord Association met at Centertown. A revival was held and forty-eight people were baptized.
  • 1919 – The church voted to build a parsonage at once.
  • 1921 – In May of this year a meeting was held by the pastor, after which nine young men were baptized.
  • 1926 – A committee was appointed to purchase new song books for the church. The Ladies Aid was granted permission to install a new furnace.
  • 1927 – In June a new roof was put on the church building. The material cost $227.95 and the labor was $115.75. The total cost of the roof was $343.70
  • 1929 – The church voted to put a porch on the parsonage. A Junior Baptist Training Union was organized.
  • 1930 – In March the church voted to wire the church and parsonage for electricity. The cost of the wiring and fixtures was $115.47.
  • 1931 – The inside of the church was repaired and redecorated for $82.63. In December, fifteen people were baptized at Brother Thompson’s pond.
  • 1932 – May, the church voted to discontinue Saturday evening services and business meetings until roads to Jefferson City were finished. In October the church basement was dedicated with dinner at noon and afternoon services. December 29, Brother W. A. Stark passed away. He was Superintendent of the Sunday School for twenty-six years.
  • 1933 – The church voted to offer the church auditorium to the school for their commencement exercises. A revival was held by the Association Missionary, Brother Blount F. Davidson. Eighteen members were added to the church.
  • 1934 – The church voted to instruct the delegates to the Association to vote against the proposal to raise the Associational Missionary’s salary to $1800 per year.
  • 1937 – The first Brotherhood was organized and was active for three years.
  • 1938 – The church auditorium was redecorated by the Willing Workers at a cost of $179.00.
  • 1940 – In September of this year the church voted to go from half-time to full-time preaching services. The pastor’s salary was raised to $1000.00 per year.
  • 1941 – Twenty-four people joined the church, the result of a revival held in July.
  • 1943 – The Concord Association met at Centertown.
  • 1945 – Pastor’s salary was raised to $1820.00.
  • 1947 – A new coal furnace was installed in the church and a bathroom was added to the parsonage. The Brotherhood was organized again.
  • 1949 – A motion was made and passed that a Woman’s Missionary Union be started according to Southern Baptist plan.
  • 1950 – In the spring of this year the church auditorium was completely redecorated.
  • 1951 – Evangelist Rev. Covel Keenum held a revival in March and seventeen people were baptized. An Extension Department was started by the Sunday School.
  • 1952 – An electric organ was purchased for the church auditorium. A new gas range was installed in the church kitchen. In July the church voted to give $500.00 in cash toward the purchase of a home for the Associational Missionary in California. The church basement was redecorated; a new hardwood floor was laid in the auditorium and carpeting was purchased. In September the first stewardship revival was held.
  • 1953 – A revival was held in March be Rev. James Melton. Nineteen people were baptized and nine were received by letter. In May the church voted to build the Educational Building. More than $5000.00 was given by member to start the building. November 22 dedication services were held with the Rev. Paul Allison as guest speaker. The Sunday School increased from four departments to seven departments.
  • 1954 – The church voted to add the state Baptist paper, “Word and Way”, to the budget with each family in the church receiving a copy. The week-end youth-led revival was held in February. A sweetheart banquet was given for the young people. Four young people joined the church as a result of this effort.
  • 1955 – Two more departments were added to the Sunday School. The Concord Association met at Centertown September 13-14. A proposed budget was presented to the church by the deacons. The amount given to the Cooperative Program was now 15 per cent of undesignated receipts, an increase of five per cent over the last year. A financial secretary was elected.
  • 1956 – The church voted to give $360.00 to the Memorial Hospital to be constructed in Jefferson City. Sunrise services were held and breakfast was served on Easter morning. Station KRCG televised the event which took place on the banks of Fred Hunziker’s lake. Visual Aid equipment was purchased.
  • 1957 – A gas furnace was installed in the parsonage. The library was opened in February with 100 donated books. It now contains more than 550 books as well as other materials which are used by members.
  • 1958 – The church voted in July to repair and improve the Church and Educational Building and to install a new heating and air-conditioning system. The deacons recommended that the church have the Forward Program of the Church Finance in the fall. In the proposed budget the amount to be given to the Cooperative Program was increased to 22 per cent and the Associational Missions 5 per cent.
  • 1960 – In April Brother Richard Clark was called as pastor. A week-end Youth-led Revival was held in July. Jim Schneider, a student at Midwestern Baptist Seminary, Kansas City, was the evangelist. In October the Fall Revival – a “church” revival – was led by Rev. Kenneth Couch, pastor of the First Baptist Church, Arnold, Missouri. The first week of December commemorated the centennial of Centertown Baptist Church. Rev. J.E. Rains, past interim pastor, and Rev. H.W. Gadd, former pastor, were visiting speakers.
  • 1961 – A spring revival was held and four were added by baptism and two by letter. A fall revival resulted in twelve additions by baptism.
  • 1962 – Light fixtures were bought for the auditorium from a memorial fund of Mrs. Lela McKee.
  • 1963 – James Stark and George Matthews were ordained as deacons. A gift was received from Love Biere, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Len Durham which was invested in the Baptist Building Fund.
  • 1964 – Jim Murphy was elected to be a deacon having come from Russellville and having served as a deacon there. A committee was formed to see about the purchase of an organ for the church.
  • 1965 – The Gulbranson organ was purchased and dedicated. The church voted to begin presenting Bibles to all new members joining the church by baptism.
  • 1966 – The church voted to form a committee to sep up a constitution and by-laws. Frank Wagner was voted to be reinstated as a deacon.
  • 1967 – A note burning service was held for paying off the debt of some remodeling and air conditioning. The debt of $13000.00 was paid off in 9 years. Richard Clark resigned as pastor. The constitution and by-laws were accepted. John Glover served as interim pastor.
  • 1968 – Rev. Burrel Jones came as pastor. Central air conditioning was installed in the parsonage.
  • 1969 – Lloyd Haworth and Robert Rhoads were ordained as deacons. Burrel Jones resigned as pastor. Rev Howard James was called as pastor.
  • 1970 – The church voted to purchase a sound system and new piano. $1000.00 was given to the Concord Associational Mission on North Ten Mile Drive.
  • 1971 – Graham Williams was called as interim music director. The church voted to purchase choir robes. The stained-glass windows were re-leaded. The church voted to begin a tract ministry.
  • 1972 – Robert Brook was called as music director. Howard James resigned as pastor. The church voted to remodel the parsonage. Fred Pulliam served as interim pastor.
  • 1973 – Robert Book resigned as music director and Graham Williams was called as interim. The Homebound ministry was begun by the church. Keith Wilson was called as music director. Rev. David Ford was called as pastor.
  • 1974 – The church voted to build the tennis and basketball court. A committee was elected to see about redecorating the auditorium. The church voted to redecorate the auditorium. The contract went to Robert Jackson Associates of St. Louis, representatives of L. L. Sams Company of Texas with a cost of $28,824.90. Max Howard, Jack Walker, and Larry Wagner were ordained as deacons.
  • 1975 – A committee was formed to bid for a new organ for the church. A new organ was purchased and is the present one. New hymnals were purchased for the church. A dedication service was held for the redecorated auditorium. Keith Wilson resigned as music director and Brenda Smith was called as new music director. A new root was put on the church building. The church voted to partially finance a trip to the Holy Land for the pastor, David Ford.
  • 1976 – The church voted to purchase a new air conditioner. The church bus was purchased for $3760.00. A new roof was installed on the parsonage.
  • 1977 – Jerry Hendrickson and Ron Edwards were ordained as deacons.
  • 1978 – Plexiglass was installed over the stained-glass windows at a cost of $2700.00. Vinyl siding was added to the church and parsonage at a cost of $12,194.50. David Ford resigned as pastor to enter Foreign Missions. Russell Johnson surrendered to the ministry.
  • 1979 – Evan Wall was called as pastor. A new front entrance and landing was added to the church. The church voted to license Russell Johnson. Evan Wall resigned as pastor.
  • 1980 – The church voted to donate $1000.00 toward the Senior Citizen Housing. The church voted to repair and redecorate the parsonage. The church voted to give financial support for college students who were entering the ministry. Rev. Larry Hendrickson was called as pastor. Landscaping was done around the new front entrance of the church and parsonage. Lights were installed on the tennis court. Ron Edwards surrendered to the ministry. A $5000.00 memorial from Amelia Witthaus was received and was to be placed in a trust fund. The church voted to license Ron Edwards. The church voted to remodel the basement of the church.
  • 1981 – The church voted to appoint and committee to set up a tape ministry to the shut-ins. The church voted to sent the pastor, Larry Hendrickson, to Taiwan as a part of Bold Mission Taiwan. Brenda Smith resigned as music director. Dwayne Huffine was called as music director. Don Scrivner and Palmer Goldammer were ordained as deacons. Dwayne Huffine was accepted as an active deacon.
  • 1982 – Dwayne Huffine resigned as music director and deacon. Graham Williams was called as interim music director. The church voted to purchase equipment for the tape ministry. $31,000.00 was received from the Jane Kelley estate.
  • 1983 – The church voted to repair the stairs to the outside entrance to the basement and a ramp was also added at a cost of $4950.00. The church and parsonage was insulated at a cost of $1263.00
  • 1984 – The church voted to purchase new choir robes at a cost of $2036.00. Ron Edwards and Russell Johnson were ordained to the Gospel Ministry.
  • 1985 – The church voted to install a new sound system which would upgrade the tape ministry. Mark Enloe was called as music director. The church participated in Good News America with the Bible distribution and people search. A celebration service to commemorate the church’s 125th anniversary was held. Rev. Richard Clark, a former pastor, was the guest speaker. The 125th celebration was held but many of the guests along with the featured speakers were not able to attend because of ice.
  • 1986 – Pastor and wife attended the SBC in Atlanta, GA; A TV and VCR were purchased.
  • 1987 – Steven Strauch enrolled in SBU, Bolivar, in church-related vocation. A plaque was presented to Fred Pulliam as “Pastor Emeritus” for his service to CBC.
  • 1988 – The Lottie Moon offering for missions totaled $2919.00
  • 1989 – CBC honored local firemen and board members with a dinner. CBC received a Certificate of Incorporation issued by the Secretary of State.
  • 1990 – Several repairs were made to the parsonage and garage; new gutters were installed on church and parsonage; vestibule dry-walled and painted with added coat rack. Sunday school rooms in basement were upgraded, all at an estimated cost of $8590.00.
  • 1991 – Steven Strauch was ordained to preach the Gospel. He was presented with a Bible given by CBC. CBC voted to purchase new Baptist hymnals with memorial from the Laura Procter family.
  • 1992 – Sunday school average attendance for 1991 was 65. Lottie Moon offering was $3165.00. Old hymnals were given to Cornerstone Church, Jefferson City. $160.00 was given to David Ford for pencils and balloons to use for witnessing in Honduras.
  • 1993 – A new desk for the pastor’s office was approved at a cost of $485.00. CBC called a summer missionary for eight weeks paying $150.00 per week, plus .20 per mile and Social Security. Pastor Larry Hendrickson will be moving to Jefferson City. Rev Hendrickson resigned as pastor. A meal was furnished and served by CC for the flood victims in Hartsburg.
  • 1994 – Rev. Nelson Duke was called as interim pastor. Ron and Susan Pemble were called as music director and pianist at $1350.00 per week, plus $22.50 per trip. Search Committee for new pastor was appointed. The old piano was given to church in Cedar City. December 1994 John Shaw was called as pastor.
  • 1995 – New furnace and air-conditioning were installed with ductwork at a cost of $4390.00. CBC hosted the Association Hymn Sing on January 22, 1995. The last Sunday in each month was designated as “blue jean” Sunday. Oscar and Ramona Fluegel purchased doors for the church entrance in memory of Jewel and Bess Barnhart. One-half of the parking lot was paved and striped. Tennis court was also paved.
  • 1996 – David Scudder was called as pastor in March. Dishwasher was purchased for the kitchen. Sunday evening services will be dismissed on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. VBS average attendance was 63.
  • 1997 – Three men were presented as prospective deacons: John Frye, Ron Pemble and Tim Landrum. CBC discontinued taking a Sunday evening offering. Children’s church was started after songs on Sunday morning. Ron and Susan Pemble resigned as music director and pianist. A benevolent fund offering will be taken the Sunday we have the Lord’s Supper.
  • 1998 – A canopy was installed over steps and ramp on the west side of CBC. Also, canopy over the front of the garage was installed. On June 14 John Frye and Tim Landrum were ordained as deacons. Furnace and air-conditioner were replaced in the parsonage. Evening service on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day were cancelled indefinitely. Budget for 1999 presented in the amount of $92,950.00.
circa 1998
  • 1999 – Jennie Farell was employed as pianist and Dennis Bradley as music director. Margaret Higgins requested that memorials for David Higgins be used for a new steeple. 1975 Baptist hymnals were presented to Villa Marie Nursing Home.
  • 2000 – David Scudder resigned as pastor. Longfellow’s Garden Center landscaped the front of the church and parsonage. World Changers (a mission team comprised of youth) was hosted by CBC. They worked on the Ron Wilson home.
  • 2001 – the Roush Construction Company began work on the new baptistery. The Steeple Committee accepted bids to install the new steeple, lights and chimes. Cost would be approximately $7000.00, most of this being donated. The steeple was ordered. Handicap signs were placed around the church. CBC gave $5000.00 to the memorial for Ivan Dameron.
  • 2002 – Sue Murphy requested the memorial fund given in memory of Jim Murphy be used to install new lighting and ceiling in the choir room.
  • 2003 – A used, 15-passenger 2003 van was purchased for $18,265.00. The vehicle was a gift from James and Kathy Haworth.
  • 2004 – Clarence Landrum was ordained as a deacon. Ordination sermon was given by Rev. John Gorham.
  • 2005 – John and Rita Alberty provided the funds to move and organ from First Baptist Church, Jefferson City, to CBC. The organ was a gift. Rita (Stonner) Alberty has been the volunteer organist at CBC since September 2002. Valentine’s banquet was held at Whistle Stop in Centertown. Senter’s Heating bid for a new furnace for the sanctuary at $11,267.00. Stained-glass windows in the sanctuary were repaired.
  • 2006 – A mission choir from Wilcrest Baptist Church, Houston, TX, presented a concert at CBC. Dick and Marilyn Rhoads, former members, are members of the choir. Bob Woolley resigned as the minister of music. Red Cross requested to use the basement at CBC in case of emergency. CBC granted this request. A new furnace was installed in the sanctuary.
  • 2007 – The deacons approached David Phelps regarding CBC’s need for an interim pastor. Rev. Phelps indicated he would be open as a permanent pastor. CBC voted for the deacons to serve as a “Search Committee”. Rev Phelps accepted the position as part-time pastor of CBC, August 2. The Wednesday Annual Thanksgiving service was changed to Tuesday.
  • 2008 – Larry Farley was ordained as a deacon on March 30. John Gorham, former pastor, held a concert at the church. Ken Mercer was called as minister of education and music. The deacons recommended that a background check be done on all church leaders. A “horse whisperer” event was held at the city park to present the Gospel. A new metal roof was installed on the church at a cost of $23,000.00
  • 2009 – A new sidewalk was poured on the east side of the building. A “Bounce Back to School” event was held at the city park with a bouncy, house, hotdogs, games and 75 backpacks with school supplies and Gospel tracts given to children. A the Concord Association meeting, CBC was presented with a baptismal award for number yearly baptisms (7), as compared to resident membership (127).
  • 2010 – Carpenter’s Kids Ministry for children grades 1 – 6, in its third year, continues on Wednesdays. Children enjoy games, crafts, music and Bible stories. The church voted to replace the carpeting in the church hall, office, choir room and bathrooms.
  • The 150th Sesquicentennial Celebration was held Sunday, October 10 with over 150 in attendance. Presentations were made by the Missouri State Legislature, the Missouri Baptist Historical Society, the Missouri Baptist Convention and Concord Baptist Association. McCayla Hartman was baptized. Pastor David Phelps preached on the theme of continuing to build on the strong foundation of Jesus Christ, the solid rock.
CBC Aug 2019
August 2019