Submitted by Nelle Price Epps
A History of Winterville Baptist Church
Printed October 27, 1938
Athens Banner Herald
Written by W.H. Faust
The Winterville Baptist Church was organized October 13, 1886, at Winterville, with forty-four members. The presbytery consisted of Dr. John G. Gibson and Rev. John F. Cheney, of Crawford; Rev. C. D. Campbell, of Athens; Rev. M. W. Evans, of Stephens; Rev. W. M. Coile, of Winterville. This splendid group of forty-four members came together under the consecrated leadership of Rev. W. M. Coile who had been continuous pastor of this church since its organization.
The names of the charter members were: William and Lucy Eberhardt, R. T. and D. F. Pittard, James A. and Sara Suddeth, James R. and Ella N. Hayes, Warren D. and Mary F. Carter, J. T. and Mary Hale, C. S. and M. A. Mitchell, J. H. and S. A. Matthews, J. H. and Eliza Matthews, J. H. and Rebecca Willingham, J. T. and Eliza Britain, John T. and Almeda A. Ingram, Wesley T. and Martha Carter, W. T. Carter, E. A. Carter, John W. Meadow, Georgia Kroner, J. B. Fleeman, George W. Cunningham, J. H. Towns, R. C. Towns, J. T. Kerlin, Cumi Ingram, Cora Ingram, Nettie Fleeman, Martha Hartsfield, Martha Watson, M. C. Shackelford, Permelia Winter, Lucy Hutcheson, and J. M. Watson.
The land upon which the church was erected was donated by the pastor, Rev. W. M. Coile, and a large portion of timber was furnished for the building by his beloved wife, Mrs. Mary Emma Coile.
Among the deacons serving this church have been R. T. Pittard, Wm. Eberhardt, J. R. Haynes, J. B. Fleeman, H. O. Fleeman, J. W. Lively, W. R. Coile, George O’Kelley, G. F. O’Kelley, C. W. Brown, M. L. Anderson, T. J. Carter, T. C. McMurray, W. E. Bryant, anad T. A. Holbrook.
The clerks have been R. T. Pittard, 1886-1915; M. L. Anderson, 1916-1930; G. L. O’Kelley, 1931-1938.
The Sunday school superintendents have been R. T. Pittard, J. R. Haynes, Wm. Eberhardt, T. R. Edwards and W. M. Coile.
The treasurers during the fifty-two year period have been R. T. Pittard and W. R. Coile.
More than 400 new members have been baptized into the fellowship of this splendid church. Two sessions of the Sarepta Association have been held with it, one in 1913 and one in 1937. This aggressive church, under the able leadership of pastor Coile who has organized and served one church as pastor longer than any other preacher in the territory of our Southern Baptist Convention, has actively supported all phases of our denomination program, having all of the organizations fostered by our general work. He has led in educational work through the more than half a century of his pastoral leadership in a wonderfully helpful way, serving on the board of trustees of secular and denominational schools, thus touching the lives of multitudes of growing young people who during the period have become outstanding Christian leaders.