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St. John’s Baptist Church — Pinopolis, South Carolina

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St. John’s Baptist Church

This clapboard church in the retreat village of Pinopolis was founded in 1851, 17 years after the community was established by planters Dr. Morton Waring and Frederick Porcher as a refuge from harsh plantation summers. Religious congregations formed within the hamlet as more people built homes here. The first sanctuary to house St. John’s Baptist was built a quarter of a mile from the church’s present location on land donated by William Cain of Somerset Plantation. The church began with eight members from neighboring Mt. Olivet Baptist Church in Goose Creek. They were led by the Reverend D.M. Breaker.

St. John's Pinopolis

Brandon Coffey of Charleston, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The village grew over the subsequent years, including during the Civil War. Another local retreat community, Pineville, had been burned by Federal troops. Pinopolis was mercifully spared from the destruction of war, causing many former Pineville residents to relocate to Pinopolis. However, while the community was not burned in the war, at some point the home of St. John’s trustee Cuthbert Hare caught fire, which resulted in the loss of church records. Therefore, much of the church’s history from the Civil War’s end to its relocation in 1884 is unknown.

St. John's Baptist Pinopolis

Brandon Coffey of Charleston, 2016 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

In 1884 St. John’s moved to its current site on land donated by Adam Davis Hare. Yet, by 1926, most members had joined Moncks Corner Baptist Church. The loss of parishioners throughout the twentieth century led to the eventual transferring of the St. John’s property to Moncks Corner Baptist Church in 1945. Occasional weddings and worship services are still held in the Pinopolis church, and its churchyard remains in use. In fact, the churchyard has even expanded by way of a 2.5-acre donation by Josiah Owens McCants. South Carolina statesman Rembert Dennis, namesake of the Rembert Dennis Building within the State House complex, is interred within the historic church grounds.

St. John’s Baptist Church Info

Address: Sugar Hill Road, Pinopolis, SC 29469
GPS Coordinates: 33.210715,-80.043561

St. John’s Baptist Church Map

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5 Comments about St. John’s Baptist Church

Gail McCutcheon says:
May 8th, 2019 at 3:51 pm

My Great Great Grandfather, Rev. James M. Kirton, was a minister for this church. His son, Davis Kirton, and his family are buried in church yard. I would love to attend a service here, if there is one held anytime. It is a beautiful church.

Lisa (Melissa) Johnson says:
November 30th, 2018 at 9:52 am

That website is my Facebook page, Penny! Hi! I think we’ve met briefly once many years ago. I live in Pinopolis … .not far from St.John’s. My great-great-great-grandmother also is Annis Meree. I believe her first marriage was to Warren Carson, then to Adam Davis Hare. I would to talk with you sometime! I love history and genealogy especially! I think we’re cousins … pretty sure of it! Please call or contact by Facebook messenger, email or phone! My number is 843-826-3588.

Penny Griffin says:
June 20th, 2018 at 5:10 pm

My great, great grandmother is buried here. Her name is Annis Maree Hare, and Adam Davis Hare was her second husband.

Gena Grover says:
March 30th, 2017 at 11:55 am

Wonderful story about St. John’s Baptist Church.

Gena Grover says:
March 30th, 2017 at 11:54 am

Wonderful story.


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