I would like to pick up where our blog left off a few weeks ago... with the "adventures" of our little white church as of 1880-1881. According to the Brenham Weekly Banner dated May 18, 1881, the church had been rebuilt in Burton and was to be dedicated. And for those of you wondering, yes, the church got their lovely organ! :)
But of course, the story doesn't stop there. From 1881 to 1900, the church served the Burton Baptist congregation for services, weddings, funerals and the community as well. Other churches even used the building for services during their own construction projects. Then not quite 20 years after the church's move into Burton, it is faced with another challenge---the 1900 storm. Many of you have probably read about the terrible storm that hit Galveston on September 6, 1900 where 6,000 people (and more) were lost. But some might not know that the storm was felt as far inland as Burton and Brenham. Our little white church was also not immune to the storm and its wrath.
According to the church minutes, the storm "blew off the building's roof" and it had to be replaced. As of 16 years later, the building still suffered from damages caused by the storm and on October 1st, 1916, the church decided to rebuild. Local builders, A.G. Homeyer and Will H. Weeren of Burton Lumber Company were given the contract to build and work began and was completed by 1917.
We currently have no pictures of the building in those years. Our earliest glimpse of the building actually dates to the early 1940s after a rare snowfall in Burton. Luckily, Miss Mildred Buck chose to pose in her front yard facing the church and thanks to her we have this lovely gem to share!
From 1917 to 1983, the little church would remain at this site in Burton and serve for countless church services, church revivals with visiting preachers, weddings, funerals, anniversaries, through three wars, as extra school space during Burton School construction, for summer Vacation Bible School and much, much more. It truly served its community and congregation well. And while all of the other church buildings in town would be dismantled during these years, our little white church would not. Thanks to the Burton Baptist Church/ First Baptist Church of Burton, it served them until 1982-1983 and was donated to the Burton Heritage Society to begin its NEXT chapter!
And that almost brings us full circle (whew! a bit of a whirlwind) as we prepare for Texas Ranger Day on March 12th and raising the much-needed funds to restore this hardworking part of our community! So come join us and become a part of this most exciting chapter in the story of Mt. Zion Historical Chapel!