Here is an excerpt from "The History of The South Fork Baptist Association", published in Lincolnton, N.C. by Journal Print Co., 1901, 203 pgs. by William Alexander Graham:
HEBRON CHURCH (Portions of Page 13 & 14 & 15)
The following deed is recorded in Book No. 27, page 635, Lincoln county records:"This indenture made this 4th day of May 1816, between Nathaniel Saddler ** and Richard Rozzell ** witnesseth ** That in consideration of fifty dollars ** a parcel of land in State and county aforesaid, immediately at said Rozzell's Ferry, bound as follows *** containing three-fouths of an acre ** with the following exceptions to wit: it is understood that the said Rozzell, his heirs and assigns are hereby debarred from building or erecting any house, or placing any family to live or reside on said land, or premises, or to interrupt or molest the meeting house or people meeting *** which land the said Saddler will warrant and defend against all persons whatsoever exclusive of above exceptions. ** '' [* is probably unreadable]
According to the terms of a swap of land made in 1832, John Rozzell was to give the church a deed in fee simple for an acre of land nearly one half mile from the ferry, the consideration was to be the right of the church on the river bank.
The old house was removed and stood on the new site until it was crushed by the weight of snow on its roof in 1852.The memebership being too weak to rebuild, a "stand" was erected in the grove, at which preaching was continued at indefinite periods of time until 1883.
The organization having been dissolved in 1853 other denominations were allowed the use of the stand--the Lutherans, Presbyterians, Methodists, etc.
The Methodists organized a society at that place erected a house of worship and now hold possession of the site.On the 7th day of February, 1883, before the Methodists began to build, brother J.C. Fichte addressed a letter to A.C. Rozzell, then in possession, in which he used the following language:--"I do want you to relinquish your claim, or whatever of claim you may think you have, to old Hebron church tract.We expect to reorganize the church and we are unwilling to surrender the site, for which we have a deed from John Rozzell, dated in 1832. This deed has never been recorded, etc."A.C. Rozzell disregarded this letter and in July, 1883, conveyed the same land to the Methodist church.
The deed from John Rozzell to the church was in the possession of an attorney.It was obtained from him by an order of the some one and could not be rediscovered.So the matter remains a mystery.
The following named preachers are known to have served the church:--John Ruker, 1800; McCary and Hosea Holcombe during the same time; Wm.Richards, 1820-9; H. W. Carroll, 1839-46; then Wade Hill, as missionary of the Broad River Assocation: then Garrison and R.B. Jones as missionary of the N.C. Baptist State Convention.
The Presbytery which dissolved the organization in 1853, was composed of Elders Alexander Abernethy and A.J. Cansler.The members went to Bruington and Salem churces.
Elder Geo. J. Wilkie preached here as missionary of the Catawba River Association once since the war.
In 1883 Elder John F. Morris, as missionary of the South Fork Association, preached here a few times.Through his instrumentality the members of the Baptist churches residing between Dutchman's Creek and the Catawba River, in Gaston County, held a conference meeting at the Flat Rock School House, near Mountain Island, on the 8th day of June, 1883, for the purpose of consulting about the propriety of reorganizing old Hebron church.Bro. Jno. L. Grice was chosen moderator, and Bro. John C. Fichte, clerk.
The following preamble and resolution was adopted:-- "Whereas, the site of the old Hebron Church has been taken into possession by A.C. Rozzell and the deed for the same mysteriously obtained from the office of Geo. F. Bason, Esq., and, whereas, there can be not doubt as to the legality of our title, and being unwilling to surrender the same, therefore, Resolved:--
"1st.That we reorganize old Hebron Chruch and that we meet for that purpose at the school house on the old site on the 6th day of July, 1883."
Afterward the time of organization was postponed until the 5th day of October, 1883, when Elders J.F. Morris and T.W. Upton, Deacons John B. Stone, J.M. Hollebaugh and J.R. Underwood, met at the old site at 11 o'clock, A. M. Bretheren J. L. Grice, J. M. Bumgarner and J.C. Fichte, were also present.Mrs. W.F. Cannon had requested a letter from Salem church to join in the organization. ** "Our intention was to occupy the school house at the old site, but the privilege was denied us by W.F. Cannon, who said he had locked us out because he was not willing we should reorganize the church at this place.After consultation we agreed to meet in the afternoon of the same day at the Flat Rock School House.Here the organization took place, Deacon John B. Stone, chairman; John M. Hollowbaugh, Secretary.
"The following persons presented letters and were enrolled as members:--
"Deacon J.R. Underwood and wife, Mary; Brethren J.L. Grice, J.M. Bumgarner and John C. Fichte.That evening the names of several newly baptized members were enrolled.Bro. John L. Grice, was elected clerk.
" The above historical sketch was adopted as a part of the church record by the church in conference on the 13th of September, 1886.
JOHN L. GRICE, CLERK."