“A beautiful Gothic church in Historic York, S.C.”
City Directories and History: (#106) 1958 and 1966 – Episcopal Church of the Good Shephard (1958 – Mrs. Ollie B. Barns lived in the rear of the church)
It was not until the middle of the 19th century that there were sufficient Anglicans in Yorkville to establish an Episcopal
Church. Rev. John D. McCullough was sent as a missionary from Charleston to the Up-country to establish churches in Spartanburg, Glen Springs, Union and Yorkville. Beginning in 1849, services were held irregularly in the Courthouse, Methodist Church, and Presbyterian Church. Good Shepherd Church was officially established in 1852, and the sanctuary, of plain Gothic style, was
built in 1855, at a cost of about $5,000. Dr. J.M. Lowry (#35) gave a corner of his lot, and Mr. William Latta (#43) donated five hundred Mexican Silver Dollars to be cast into the bell, which is still used. He also donated a melodeon, making Good Shepherd the first church in York to have a musical instrument. Traditional Episcopal services of this church were a comfort to many Low-country families who took refuge in Yorkville during the War Between the States. Elements of the Low-country influence are seen in the pew gates, the chancel, and the gallery. Of particular note is the marble altar in memory of Rev. James Stoney [1861-65]. Also note the very fine stained glass
windows of this building. Immediately to the west of the church is the W. Bedford Moore/Parish House, built in 1857. Legend has it that Benjamin Franklin Withers (the
1850 Census list Mr. Withers as a merchant living in York with his wife, Rachael C. Withers.), was working as a carpenter on the house when he was killed in a fall. (In reality, Mr. Withers was an accomplished contractor from N.C. who had come to York following the construction of other houses in Fairfield County, S.C. – R&R) His fiancee is supposed to have used her diamond ring to cut the date of his death in one of the windows. Apparently it has been broken and replaced in the interim. [Courtesy of the Yorkville Historical Society – 2002]
Also see the More Information link below the primary picture for information on T.H. Smith, one of the builders of this handsome church.
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