A large population of Quakers lived throughout South Carolina in the early 19th century. As a result of a religious edict, thousands of former prosperous artisans and farmers who held slaves in the region were forced to sell out and move in the 1820-30s. Many of these South Carolinians moved to the mid west and became successful farmer.
The cemetery was started in circa 1800.
CANE CREEK CHURCH 1775 – 1984 – Contributed by Mrs. Stanley Vanderford of Union, S. C. (Information courtesy of and from: CDGHS Magazine)
Quaker records say that Cane Creek was established as a Meeting for Worship in 1775, under Bush River Monthly Meeting in Newberry County. From about 1788-89, Cane Creek had its own Monthly Meeting with jurisdiction over Friends in Union, Spartanburg, Chester and York Counties. By around 1810-12, most of the members had moved to Miami, Ohio, where they established Caesar’s Creek Monthly Meeting, continuing to use the same Minute Book which they carried with them from South Carolina to Ohio. The Minute Book is still owned by the Meeting in Ohio. Because of opposition to slavery, the Quakers began moving west to Ohio and Indiana. They sold the Santuck Meeting House to Mr. Spilsby Glenn, around 1805, who planned to move it and use it for a barn.
After the close of the American Revolution, the Quakers, a numerous sect in lower Union District, built two Meeting Houses. One was called Padgetts Creek, and the other was Cane Creek, which is located about two miles west of Santuck. The land was purchased from Mr. Isaac Hawkins, the Agent of the Society of Friends. In the Office of the Clerk of Court, Union, South Carolina is recorded in Deed Book B, p. 87 – Lease & Release – 3 October 1787 – Adam Gilchrist, Merchant of Charles Town, to Henry Millhouse, John Cook, and William Hawkins of Union County, 96 District, “on a branch of Tyger River”, planters, trustees named and appointed by the Congregation of Friends of Cane Creek Meeting in the said District and State, for 10 sterling, 372 acres on drafts of Tinker Creek, waters of Tyger River. Bound by vacant land William Smith, David Harris, and James Hall. “As the said congregation or society is not yet incorporated by Law they cannot purchase Lands and Tennements in their own names are Corporated Body, it is therefore necessary that the Conveyance of the Titles to the said Lands be made in Names and Names of Trustees appointed by the said Congregation”, to erect a place of worship and burying ground. Witnessed: H. W. DeSaussure and Nathan Hawkins. Recorded 23 June 1788.
Deed Book M, p. 332 – 4 July 1814 – Isaac Hawkins of Union District, Trustee and Attorney for the Society of Friends of Cane Creek Meeting House, for $70, paid by Samuel Otterson, James Dugan and James Jeter, Senior, “Trustees appointed to superintend the Same as a House of Worship”, or their Successors in Society, sold to the above Trustees 10 acres near Cane Creek. Bound on all sides by land granted to Adam Gilchrist, the 10 acres being part of a 372-acre tract granted to Gilchrist 5 February 1787 and conveyed by lease and release to Henry Millhouse, John Cook, and William Hawkins as Trustees for the Society of Friends, Cane Creek Meeting House, and they being removed to the Territory northwest of Ohio River and wish the same to be disposed of for their use, and I the said Isaac Hawkins being one of the said Congregation and in Society, and now Trustee and Attorney for that Society, have sold the above 10 acres except the Old Burial Ground where one-fourth of an acre is still reserved for a burial place. Signed by Isaac Hawkins. Witnesses: Burwell Chick and Samuel McJunkin. Proved by Chick the same day before Joseph McJunkin, J.P. Recorded 5 May
Several men of the neighborhood, Major Samuel Otterson, James Dugan, Joseph McJunkin, Abram McJunkin, William Hobson and James Jeter, bought it from Mr. Spilsby Glenn and presented it to the community as a Church building for all denominations. These men had been soldiers in the American Revolution. The Church was formed around 1809 by a few members of the Grassy Spring Church uniting with a few from Brown’s Creek. The building was used regularly by all denominations until about 1850, when the friction over which denomination owned the building reached such a peak that it was taken to court; the arbitrators being Thomas N. Dawkins and Davis Goudelock. The Presbyterians were adjudged the owners. Not long after this, the Presbyterian Church was hurt by a division within itself over the question of slavery. This division was felt when about half the congregation left and aligned themselves about equally with the Methodist and Baptist Congregations in the community.
Rev. Daniel Gray was secured as a stated supply for one-fourth of his time and he preached for two years. During this time Major Otterson and Major McJunkin officiated as Ruling Elders and constituted the Session. From 1811-1816 the Church was almost destitute of preaching. Sometimes a sermon was preached by a minister of the Methodist denomination who came by invitation. The Elders and Members frequently met for prayer, praise and reading of the Scripture.
From 1816-1820 Mr. William Means, a Licentiate, served this Church as a stated supply. It is probably that the persons that formed the Cane Creek Church did not regard themselves, at the time, as uniting in a duly organized Church but, as merely making arrangements for sustaining Gospel Ordinances rather than so constituted by Presbyterian action. 1820-1825 It was functioning as a Presbyterian Church when Mr. Hillhouse and Rev. Daniel Johnson and Mr. James Chestney filled its pulpit part time. 1826-1830 There was no stated preaching. During this time Presbytery requested to know why the Church neglected to report this situation to Presbytery. October 4, 1829 Presbytery made arrangements to have the Sacraments of the Lord’s Supper administered. 1829 Rev. Daniel Gray supplied this pulpit and 17 persons were added to the congregation. 1832-1835 Rev. Jeptha Harrison filled this pulpit and 15 persons were added. 1836-1838 Rev. Aaron Williams In the course of his ministry 21 persons were added. All of these members came into the Church on examination. 1839 The Church was vacant, receiving occasional supply ministers from Presbytery. 1839-1860 On the last Sabbath in 1839, Rev. James H. Saye commenced in this Church and during his ministry 43 members were added by examination. No colored person had ever joined this Church until 1842. In all, about five had joined, all of them worthy members. Emigration had been active during the entire existence of Cane Creek Church and the Presbyterian population was always small. 1861-1862 Rev. W. F. Farrow served this Church. 1863-1865 Rev. Robert Douglas served. 1866-1868 Rev. D. A. Todd served. 1869-1870 Rev. D. L. Baker served. 1871-1883 Rev. J. S. Bailey served.
After the Civil War, Cane Creek barely existed for some years but began growing stronger in the seventies. In 1877 the Church suffered another division when Mount Vernon Church was formed a few miles away. This division was an amiable one, but history has since proved it was an unwise move, because neither Church has been able to do the work they could have done had they remained together. In 1884, it was thought best to move the Church to the location in Santuck where it now stands. The neat little Church was built largely of the materials saved from the original building.
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