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Home North Carolina Martin County City of Parmele Historical Markers Flat Swamp Church

Flat Swamp Church

US 64 at Carson Road, Parmele, NC, USA
  North Carolina State Historical Marker
    North Carolina State
Historical Marker
    Marker Text:
"Primitive Baptist. Begun in 1776. First pastor was John Page. Second building on site. Two miles S."
     Constituted in 1776, Flat Swamp in Pitt County was among the earliest Primitive Baptist churches in North Carolina. (The subject marker stands in Martin County just north of the Pitt/Martin boundary and indicates that the church is two miles south.) The church sent Henry Ellis and George Williams to Toisnot in Edgecombe County on August 24, 1776, to appeal for the creation of the new church. At that point the church had sixty-three members. John Page, who served the church until 1795, was listed as minister in the records of 1776. The Kehukee Association convened there in 1791 and subsequent years.

     In January 1782, Martin Ross (1762-1828) became a member of the church and was baptized by John Page. Two years later the same church granted Ross a license to preach. In 1786 a branch of Flat Swamp church worshipping at Skewarkey Meeting House in Martin County chose Ross as its pastor. Ross, a vigorous and highly respected leader, preached widely in northeastern North Carolina and southeastern Virginia. The church building at Flat Swamp was destroyed by a tornado in 1924 but was quickly rebuilt.

Kehukee Primitive Baptist Association Minutes
Francis M. Manning and W. H. Booker, Martin County History, 2 vols. (1970 and 1979)
Martin County Heritage (1980)
William Saunders, ed., Colonial Records of North Carolina, V, 1177
William S. Powell, ed., Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, V, 252—sketch of Martin Ross by John R. Woodard