Clay Township Church History
Methodist Church/Asbury Chapel
The first religious exercises in Clay Township were conducted by ministers of the Methodist Church at the residence of T.C. Franklin, where a class was organized as early as the year 1822, under the supervision of Rev. John Cord. Among the early members of this society can be named T.C. Franklin and wife, Col. John Franklin and wife, Henry Baker and wife, Ison Sumpter and wife, Miss Crockett, Mrs. Samuel Franklin, Elizabeth Bryant, Mrs David Thacker and Polly Crockett.
Services were held at Franklin's residence and other places for several years and after the organization gained sufficient strength, a house of worship was erected and named Asbury Chapel. The church has maintained an existence ever since the original organization and in 1884 was one of the aggressive societies of the township.
Disciples or Christians
The church known as Disciples or Christians held services in an early day at the residence of Henry Pirtle and subsequently at the dwelling of J.J. and B.F. Stevenson. Their early preachers were: Richard Lane, Michael Combs, Thomas C. Johnson, J.M. Mathes, Thomas C. Franklin and Thomas C. Hughes. A society of this church is still maintained known as Concord, which has an active membership.
The Baptists established a church near Big Raccoon in an early day, the first meetings being held at the residence of Elijah Coffey. Among their preachers were: Leroy Mayfield, William Carleton, James Medley and Reuben Coffey. The church is known as Bethel and was in a flourishing condition in 1884.
The Salem Separate Baptist Church on Little Raccoon is an old organization. The society has a good house of worship and has been a power of good in the community.
The Regular Baptists had an organization known as Little Flock, which was a society of fair condition.
Heddings Chapel was organized at the residence of Jesse Walker in the year 1843 and three years later a house of worship was erected. This house was replaced in 1870 by a more commodious frame structure which stood eleven years when it was destroyed by fire. A new building was erected in 1882 on ground donated by J. Green. The membership in 1884 was 90.