Hickory College Church
From Our Past
The Hickory College community is located in the southwestern section of Metcalfe County about 4 miles north of Summer Shade, Kentucky on HWY 640. Since Hickory College School was in a central location in the community, it became the obvious place for the citizens to have meetings of various kinds. Around the turn of the century, the community started to hold church services, gospel meetings, and singings in the school building. About 1905, Bro. Hardy Woodward of the church of Christ held his first series of a two week gospel meetings in the Hickory College schoolhouse. During the meetings, day services were held if there was not a conflict with school. In addition to the church of Christ, the Mormons held a one night service on possibly two occasions. About 1912-13, a Presbyterian preacher named Weeden tried to organize a Sunday school, but his efforts failed.
Around 1920, a grove meeting was held in the woods of Mr. Plez Free. Mr. Free, Frank Harbison, and Oather Edwards worked to prepare the woodland area for the meetings. Services, conducted by Bro. Willie Emberton, were held in the area between the location of the third and fourth school buildings. For a time after that, the church of Christ started to hold regular services. During this same time in 1920-21, a new school building was to be constructed at Hickory College. It was suggested by Frank Harbison, one of the school trustees, to R.A. Palmore, superintendent of Metcalfe County Schools, to build the school building larger in order to hold church services. The other trustees, Oather Edwards and Ed Perkins, agreed. However, after a while, interest died and the members went to Pleasant Hill church of Christ at Randolph. During the 1930's, church services were held once again due to a singing school taught by Gill Harbison. The doors of the Hickory College church of Christ have not failed to open since that time.
By the 1940's, the schoolhouse became too small to accommodate the members with seating, and the lighting was poor. During the July or August gospel meetings, the attendance outgrew the capacity of the building. At the time, the congregation started plans for ht construction of a church building. Beginning n 1942, donations from the first Sunday in each month were set aside for the building fund. During March 1943, several members purchased war bonds with the understanding that the proceeds were to go to the new church.
In 1947, the new church building was started. The land for the building was purchased from Denzil Perkins, and he and Rex Edwards donated adjacent land to the church that is presently used as parking space. The construction of the building was supervised by the elders, Oather Edwards, Leroy Nunnally, Bernice Witty and Gill Harbison, and the deacons, Rex Edwards, Levy Glass and Alpha Witty. A contract for $6,000 was "let" to Roy Lee McMurtrey with most of the members working on the buildings' construction. Members pledged to contribute a certain amount of money which they paid as the church was being built. Therefore, two months after the foundation was laid, church services were held in the new building.
Over the years many new additions have been added to the building. The church has progressed under the influence of many faithful men and women. We thank God for the examples of these dedicated people.