The Old Mulkey Meeting House


"All across Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee and South Carolina, there were rumblings of discontent.  Congregations were declaring themselves "Separate" or simply "Christian Churches."  The restoration plea was being heard throughout the Western Reserve.  And fervent revivals brought thousands to a great awakening of religion on the American frontier. "

In the words of John Mulkey, "Now all you who believe as I do, follow me out the west door." 

These words "reverberated through the rough-hewn beams of the Mill Creek Baptist Church.  It was Saturday morning, November 18, 1809.  The congregation of some two hundred had gathered for the last time, and the words of John Mulkey were like a broad axe splitting the timbers of the Baptist traditions from top to bottom."


"John walked slowly to the right of the long pulpit that stood on the north side of the building.  Approaching the low door at the west end of the church, he bent slightly to clear the lintel and stepped out into the crisp air of the autumn morning.  A snow had fallen leaving the ground a deep rust sprinkled over with a fine covering of white that resembled sugar.  Gusts of wind were now blowing the frozen granules across the wooded cemetery where several Revolutionary War veterans lay resting from their struggle to win their country's independence.  John looked out across the rough hewn stones.  He was trying to win some independence too... "

"A few of the congregation closest to the west door began to rise from their pews.  Hannah Pennington, sister of the famous Kentucky explorer, Daniel Boone, along with Joseph Gist, a brother to the first white man to set foot in Kentucky, Nathan Breed, Obediah Howard and William M. Logan crossed the threshold and stood with Brother Mulkey in the small clearing.  Others followed until one hundred-fifty of the two hundred present stood with their preacher in the grey light of a cold November morning in the county of Barren, the new state of Kentucky, some two miles and half south of a small community called Tompkinsville."


.....excerpts from "The Old Mulkey Meeting House" by Glayton Gooden