Organized in June 1855, Otterville Baptist Church originally held services in the upper room of the old Hamilton School building. The Hamilton School building was established upon the death of Dr. Silas Hamilton, who bequeathed in his will the funds for a school building and “a public place of worship.” Hamilton Primary School was the first integrated school in the nation.
George Washington, a black man, who was purchased by Dr. Silas Hamilton as a boy after Hamilton learned Washington’s mother had been sold into slavery, was a member of Otterville Baptist Church. Washington served as janitor of the church, sang in the choir, and became assistant Sunday School superintendent.
In 1873, a brick church was built. It cost about $10,000. Services were held on alternate Sundays and Sabbath School Session were held each week.
Around 1952, the church built the educational building. In 1965, a new church was built. The congregation moved in on Oct. 24, 1965, and the church was dedicated on November 21, 1965.
The old brick church was torn down, and the old church bell went into the new church. The site of the old church is the parking lot of the current church.
To learn more about Hamilton Primary School, Dr. Silas Hamilton and George Washington, click here.