This brick meeting house in the Blackstock community near Chester was built by Irish immigrant David Lyle in 1842. It is the third church building to serve this congregation. The church was roughly organized in 1759 by Scots-Irish settlers and formally recognized and named in 1770 by the Reverend William Richardson.
Architectural features of the church are original and include handmade brick, a fieldstone foundation, and granite steps. The front doors, made of pine, are held together with pegs. Original interior features include pews, pine flooring, and a door lock.
Many early members of this church fought in the American Revolution and are buried in the church’s graveyard. A granite marker placed in the churchyard in 1933 commemorates these soldiers. Catholic Presbyterian is one of the state’s oldest churches in continuous use.
Catholic Presbyterian Church is listed in the National Register:
The present brick church building, completed in 1842 by Irish émigré David Lyle and the third on the site, is an excellent example of meeting house architecture. Historically and architecturally significant is this church which, after its organization in 1759, served the area’s first settlers (mostly Scotch-Irish Presbyterians) and later sent an impressive number of soldiers from its congregation to fight in the Revolution. Still in use at the time of its nomination, the church has one of the state’s longest records of continuous use. Known as the “Mother of Churches” in this area, Catholic Presbyterian was also the mother of other churches founded in Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and Arkansas by members who migrated to these states. It remains virtually as built, of hand-pressed brick, and displays such original features as molded brick cornices, pegged front doors, pine floors and pews. The cemetery, surrounded by a fieldstone wall, contains many old markers. A granite marker, erected in 1933 by Catholic’s Memorial Association, lists names of sixty-two soldiers from the church who fought in the Revolutionary War.
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