Mount Bright Missionary Baptist Church
211 West Union Street, Hillsborough, NC
Prior to the emancipation of enslaved African Americans, a group of “coloured” men and women held membership and worshipped at the former Hillsborough Baptist Church, now First Baptist Church of Hillsborough located on the corner of Wake and West King Streets.
Pioneers of Mt. Bright Baptist Church
The African-American congregation continued to meet at the church until April 1868, when they voluntarily withdrew their fellowship to form a church of their own. Minutes from the First Baptist Church records read:
“The coloured members of the church with the exception of Bro. Lewis Jenkins having voluntarily withdrawn their fellowship from us for the purpose of organizing a church of their own, therefore, we recommend that their names be stricken from the roll and that we recognize them as a separate and distinct church.”
Walnut wood pew, originally in Hillsboro Baptist Church, now sits in Mt. Bright Missionary Baptist Church.
Twenty  members subsequently formed a congregation under the leadership of Reverend Alfred E. Bright, hence the name, Mount Bright Baptist Church. They met in the homes of one another. The original members of Mount Bright Baptist Church included: Mars Whitted, Ed Bolden, George Smith, Jim Thompson, George Craig, Mark Long, Marsh Dixon, London Robinson, Martin Whitted, Anderson Henderson, Alston Whitted, Daniel Latta, Sr., Annie Alston, Julia Craig, Peggie Clemons, Beanie Moore, Millie Robinson, Peggie Faribault, Jane Whitted and Fannie M. Whitted.
Susannah W. Graham, widow of William Graham, former governor of North Carolina, had donated land to the congregation, and the current church structure is located on that site.
Hattie Viola and Nochs Walker on their wedding day.
Courtesy of Dorothy W. Shanklin, daughter.