The community still felt a need for a church and a consecrated burial ground, and so in 1876 Maurice Sullivan sold for one dollar one acre of land atop the mountain to Joseph J. Kane, bishop of Wheeling, for the church and cemetery. By 1878 a small, hewn log church was completed and named after St. Colman, a popular Gaelic-Irish Saint. St. Colman’s Church never received its own priest and continued to rely on monthly visits from St. Patrick’s Church. The Irish community on the mountain existed into the 20th Century, with an average of fifteen to twenty families living in the area. The church would remain the focal point of the community on Irish Mountain. Around 1928 the original log structure was covered with clapboard siding and painted white, giving it the appearance it still has today.
Behind the church is the St. Colman’s Cemetery, which is the final resting place for the Irish community who lived and died on the mountain. The cemetery contains rows of neat tombstones, many revealing the Irish birthplace of those buried and some containing interesting inscriptions such as,
“Remember kind friends as you pass by, As you are now, so once was I. As I am now, so you must be. Prepare for death, and follow me” (1).
St. Colman’s Cemetery also contains a “lost corner” in the rear of the cemetery of unconsecrated ground where infants and other individuals who died without baptism are buried.
The Irish immigrants would move off of the mountain in the 20th Century, but the church and cemetery remain as a visible reminder of the once thriving Irish farming community that populated the mountain. St. Patrick’s Catholic Church of Hinton continues to hold special occasion events and services at St. Colman’s Church, and maintains the grounds of the church and cemetery.