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The Union Baptist Church served as a barrack for Civil War soldiers. James Jorden served in the Revolutionary War.

  • Union Baptist Church today
  • Church in 1970. Photo Courtesy of Marshall university Special Collections

The Union Baptist Church was officially organized in 1810, but church history claims informal meeting as early as 1788, soon after the James River and Kanawha Turnpike was completed from Richmond to the Ohio River. The church is still located at its original site on a small hill just above a ford of the Mud River and site of an early covered bridge.

Union Troops were ordered to defend "Mud Bridge" during the Civil War. Those troops were quartered at church which they left in 'shambles'. The church still preserves the bullet holes and bayonet marks. The soldiers all contracted measles and were confined to the church for several weeks.

At that time the community was called Mud Bridge and across the road from the church lay the Jorden Cemetery. James Jorden, Sr. was a Revolutionary Soldier and was buried here in 1810. His wife Sarah lies beside him.

A gallery for slaves can still be seen. Around church grounds earthworks from the Union encampment are still slightly visible. The earthworks can be best seen in person when on church grounds. No photo of slave gallery can be found online but rements of gallery are found within the old Union Cemetery on church grounds.

Cabell Annals and Families - George S. Wallace Cabell County Cemeteries, Volume 2 - Carrie Eldridge Cabell Heritage Book, 1809-1996, KYOWVA Genealogy Society Vertical Files Box #7 (Child Abuse TO The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Folder: Union Baptist. Items include one tour guide booklet and 9 articles of church from local papers. Located in Marshall University Special Collections.