committed to historic Baptist & Reformed beliefs







History of the Churches of the Pittsburgh Baptist Association

by William Pankey


In 1874, a Sunday school was organized at Fair Oaks by Nathaniel Macrum, Edwin A. Macrmn, J. M. Stoner and Robert E. Rogers. Three years later, April 22, 1877, the Fair Oaks Baptist church was organized, with Rev. J. B. Mulford as pastor. A beautiful stone chapel was erected. For the next ten years the church was served for brief periods by Rev. R. S. Sayre, Rev. J. W. Plannett, Rev. J. M. Scott and Rev. R. W. Van Kirk. By the year 1890, the struggling church seemed to be a hopeless failure.

After the American Bridge Company erected a large plant near Economy, bringing an increase of population to the community, the Fair Oaks church was reorganized in 1905. Rev. H. B. Rankin became pastor and served until 1908. Rev. G. L. Hoover became pastor in 1908 and served until 1910, when Rev. Benjamin Stinson became pastor—serving for one year.

In view of the fact that Ambridge had a rapid increase in population, services were started in the Ambridge Borough Hall, where, in 1912, the First Baptist Church of Ambridge was organized. Services were conducted in the Fair Oaks church, however, until 1915, when they were resumed in a store room on Charles Street, Ambridge. The present building was erected on the corner of Eleventh Street and Maplewood Avenue in 1916. Due to a misunderstanding among the members, a group withdrew from the church in 1928, and formed the First Christian Church, Ambridge. The present membership of the Baptist church is 134.

The following ministers have served the church:

Rev. H. Tupper (1913), Rev. Herbert Agate (1916), Rev. M. Hancock (1916), Rev. J. Cummins (1916), Rev. J. S. Stone (1917-1918), Rev. A. A. Blake (1919-1922), Rev. William H. Cutler (1922- 1927), Rev. W. V. Bacon (1927-1929), Rev. W. Mainwaring (1931-1932), Rev. E. R. Sidler (1933- 1936), Rev. Theodore L. Rich (1936- ).

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