Tucapau Baptist Church was organized on February, 18th 1898 with approximately 35 charter Members. The first meeting place was a dwelling house on the corner of Chestnut Street just opposite the current building. After a few months the meeting place was changed to a room over the Mill Store and was used by all village churches. The Baptist Church held services there for approximately two years.
Church minutes indicate that a committee was appointed February 19, 1899, to locate a lot for a church building. On June 18, 1899, plans for the new building were adopted and a building fund started. The church progressed rapidly and the building, located across the bridge opposite the mill and up on a hill, was completed in 1900. ( Note :The street was named Church Street )
The building was a cruciform ( meaning having the shape of a cross ) gray frame building, a belfry and bell on the gable, arched opaque windows in front, square windows on the sides, a porch, wooden steps on each end leading up to a double door entrance into a vestibule. Sunday School rooms in the back. Woodwork of doors light brown, slat seats and pulpit stand of light cherry. Seating capacity 150. no parsonage, and no cemetery. Building size 70′ X 90′.
Lot size 90′ X 115 ”
With the enthusiastic leadership of Rev. F.M. Linder the church progressed spiritually,
numerically, and financially. Rev. Linder initiated a new building program January 4th, 1948.
Selected as the building committee: G.B. Freeman, chairman, H.L. Hutcherson, A.L. Haggerty, Joe Fortenberry, and D.L. Thompson. These men served faithfully in the year that followed.
A beautiful lot located on Chestnut Street was given to the church as a building site by Walter S. Montgomery, President of Startex Mills. The house that was located on the lot was moved to an
adjacent lot and on October 17th, 1957 was purchased as a pastorium at a
cost of $ 3,950.00.
The old church building was sold to Startex Mills for $ 5,000.00
Groundbreaking for the new building was held on September 5th, 1948, with
Gov. J. Strom Thurmond, then a Presidential Candidate, as the featured speaker.
The 5,000 people present gave more than $ 5,000.00 in cash toward the new building that day.
A copper box, made by B.W. Morgan, containing documents of
historical interest, i.e.,
copies of ” Startex Prints “, the ” Spartanburg Herald-Journal “, A program of the church’s
September 5th Homecoming, a church roll, and a Bible, were placed in the cornerstone on November 21st, 1948. The final service was held in the old church on August 28, 1949 with the sermon topic :
” I Have Fought a Good Fight ” On September 4th, 1949, with a membership of 343 we formerly occupied our present church building, which was constructed at a cost of $ 130,033.46.
At that time, only one charter member survived…Mrs. Nettie Jackson.
Church members remained faithful to their task and on September 2nd, 1951, a mortgage burning was held and the church was formally dedicated.
In 1949 the Village of Tucapau voted to change its name to Startex in association of the mill. However, our church chose to retain its charter name Tucapau Baptist because the front stained glass window bearing
that name had just been installed at a considerable cost.
(copied from Startex Tucapau Mills Facebook page.)