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Pee Dee Presbyterian Church — Dillon, South Carolina


SC Picture Project  |  Dillon County  |  Pee Dee Presbyterian Church


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Pee Dee Presbyterian Church

This simple meeting house in rural Dillon takes its name from the nearby Little Pee Dee River – in fact, some records refer to the church as Little Pee Dee Presbyterian Church. It was founded around 1829 by the Reverend Duncan McIntire (also spelled McIntyre), who delivered his sermons in Gaelic for the many Scottish settlers who understood only that language. The tradition of Gaelic services continued until the Civil War. Prior to the founding of this congregation, Presbyterians in this area usually traveled to Ashpole Presbyterian in Rowland, North Carolina, just over the South Carolina border. The Reverend McIntire was the minister at Ashpole Presbyterian when he realized the need for a church along the Little Pee Dee River.

Pee Dee Presbyterian

Bill Segars of Hartsville, 2005 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The church was established on the river near Campbell’s Bridge, and a log structure was built to accommodate its members. In 1851 the congregation relocated to the present site on land donated by Neil M. Carmichael and Mary McDuffie. The Carmichael family cemetery rests near the church and is often mistaken as the original church graveyard. This frame structure was built some time between 1851 and 1855, and individual families constructed the pews. The church was restored in the early part of the twentieth century; the original double-door entrance was replaced by a single door, and the double doors were converted into windows. An addition was built in the rear of the church during this process, which housed a new pulpit.

Pee Dee Presbyterian Rear

Bill Segars of Hartsville, 2005 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

The church was dissolved in 2003 due to low membership, though the building is held in trust and maintained by a board of trustees. It opens on occasion for special services such as the traditional Kirkin’ of the Tartans ceremony, or blessing of the families.

Reflections on Pee Dee Presbyterian Church


Former church member Gerald M. Berry shares: “I am a direct descendant of the founding families of this church, the McIntyres and the Carmichaels. My direct family members have always been associated with this church and active in its congregation. In 1946, I was baptized in this church by Reverend Pat Boyle and became a member in my youth and remained a member until 1972. For most of those years, I attended afternoon services there and remember it very well. During those years, there were, to the best of my knowledge, basically four families who were still actively involved in the services at Pee Dee Church: the Stuarts, the Campbells, the Rays, and my family, the Berrys. I miss that church and still have clear, fond memories of those quiet afternoon services and the faithful people who were there. Although regular services ended in 2003, I now long for annual religious services to be revived and to be reminiscent of those from my childhood and youth – not merely the celebration of ancestral roots but, more importantly, the celebration of religious beliefs and the worship of God.”

Pee Dee Presbyterian Church Info


Address: 1100 Pee Dee Church Road, Dillon, SC 29536
GPS Coordinates: 34.364679,-79.325794

Pee Dee Presbyterian Church Map

Please Share Your Thoughts!


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5 Comments about Pee Dee Presbyterian Church

Gerald M. Berry says:
November 5th, 2018 at 12:39 am

Thank you for publishing my thoughts and memories from years past — memories of people and events that I have stored. In time, more will surface, and I shall certainly find the time to write about them so that others can visualize and sense what I observed and felt.

SC Picture Project says:
November 4th, 2018 at 4:17 pm

Thank you so much for sharing these wonderful memories with us, they add so much depth to understanding the history behind this place!

Gerald M. Berry says:
November 3rd, 2018 at 11:39 pm

I am a direct descendant of the founding families of this church, the McIntyres and the Carmichaels. My direct family members have always been associated with this church and active in its congregation. In 1946, I was baptized in this church by Reverend Pat Boyle and became a member in my youth and remained a member until 1972. For most of those years, I attended afternoon services there and remember it very well. During those years, there were, to the best of my knowledge, basically four families who were still actively involved in the services at Pee Dee Church: the Stuarts, the Campbells, the Rays, and my family, the Berrys. I miss that church and still have clear, fond memories of those quiet afternoon services and the faithful people who were there. Although regular services ended in 2003, I now long for annual religious services to be revived and to be reminiscent of those from my childhood and youth–not merely the celebration of ancestral roots but, more importantly, the celebration of religious beliefs and the worship of God.

SCIWAY says:
October 20th, 2017 at 11:22 pm

Hello Karie, there is a website called Find a Grave where users can submit names of people who are buried in certain cemeteries. This one has been transcribed and those listings can be found here: https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gsr&GScid=70541

Karie Woodcock says:
October 20th, 2017 at 9:32 pm

My grandmother, Sara Elizabeth McKenzie McPherson, used to take me here when I was young, I remember it very vividly. I would love to have a list or transcription of the tombstones there. I have done my family genealogy for years and am currently residing in Florida.




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