Shady Grove Baptist Church, founded 1855
While roaming the back roads of North Georgia on one of my photo explorations I found a very narrow, pitted dirt road. Something was just calling to me that day and I must have gone on for eight or nine miles, seeing nothing but woods and worsening road conditions. I began to worry about getting stuck, unable to turn around, long out of reach of a cell phone tower. I saw no one, no homes, no worked fields, nothing to indicate the recent presence of humans. Just about the time I was really beginning to wonder if I had made a mistake I came upon this tiny one-room church. It seemed like a gem shining in a mud puddle.
Shady Grove Baptist Church! A small sign on the building indicated it was established in 1855. It was obviously well loved and currently used despite the appearance it could not possibly hold more than twenty people. I immediately knew this was the destination I had been drawn to. I got out with my Canon and began to explore.
I was stopped in my tracks when I came upon a stone painted in old world script “Molt Hughes And Baby”. I was overcome with the grief displayed on the face of this stone. I could not help but wonder who was Molt Hughes? When did she die? How did she die, giving birth? Who was it that was left alone behind?
Further exploration answered, partially, some of my questions. I learned that Thomas J Hughes had donated the land I now stood upon to the church in 1874; less than ten years after the Civil War. This little piece of land and it’s little church were in the midst of nowhere even today. How remote it must have been in 1874.
Thank you for visiting and reading about Molt. If you can shed any light or information about Shady Grove Baptist or its history, please share in a comment below, -t