Shiloh Church was organized in 1838 at the home of Charles H. Doughton. Four members are listed in the Church Register as joining the church in September of 1838 by baptism. They are C.H. Doughton, Margaret Doughton, F.B. Doughton and Adelia A. Doughton. In April of 1856, the next member, Joseph B. Doughton, was received by baptism. From 1838 to 1853 services were held in the Doughton home and other homes in the community.
In 1853, a one-room log building was erected about one-fourth of a mile northwest of the present site on the land owned by Allen Gentry and later by Ray Hampton. That log building was the Shiloh Methodist Episcopal Church, South, and it also served as a school house.
In June 1856, Allen Gentry and James Boyer conveyed to James H. Parks, Absolom Hines, William L. Mitchell and Charles H. Doughton as Trustees one and one-half acres for “the use and benefit of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.”
This land is across the road from the present church and includes the old part of the cemetery.
Several years later, the first building on church building was erected. It was a small frame structure, partly of hewn timbers, and was located across the road from the present church near the main gate of the oldest part of the cemetery.
In it the first Sunday School in the county was conducted. This building also served as a school house for many years.
The Act of the Legislature of 1859 creating Alleghany County contained a provision that Quarter Session Courts (comparable to the Superior Court of today) should be held at Shiloh Church until a county seat could be located and court facilities provided. Therefore, several court sessions were held at Shiloh before the first courthouse was built in Sparta in 1867.
In 1905 a new church building was completed building was completed across the road and east of the second building. It was a large frame structure; dedicated in October 1905 and served until the construction of the present brick building was underway.
Activity leading to the construction of the present church began in September, 1954, when Mr. J.K. Doughton, Chairman of the Administrative Board appointed the building committee: Carlis Lee Mitchell, chairman, Eugene Hampton and Miss Evelyn Mitchell. Mr. F.A. Mitchell made the first substantial donation, and the project under the supervision of G.R. Hendrix progressed slowly on a pay-as-you-go basis. Raising the $13,900 cost of the building was made possible by a $3,000 contribution from Duke Endowment, much effort by the Women’s Society for Christian Service, and monetary gifts from our members and many friends.
Shiloh United Methodist Church is a recognized landmark in the community and area; it has been the spiritual home of many in the past and strives to reach out with love for all of God’s creations.
Excerpted from the book, The History of Shiloh United Methodist Church, 1838-2001, compiled and written by Judy Mitchell and Evelyn Hash. Download the book here.