In 1737, Reverend William Thomas laid off four acres of his land in Hilltown on which he built a meeting house at his own expense. He furnished it with seats and a pulpit he had fashioned out of a very large hollow poplar tree. Hostile Indians kept Hilltown residents in fear much of the time and "in times of the most threatening danger, [Reverend Thomas] carried with him his arms of defence, even to the base of his pulpit, where before he ascended, he deposited his gun ammunition and sword." Reverend Thomas preached from his Hilltown pulpit for the next twenty years, or until his death in 1757, at which time his son, John, took over his duties. The Lower Hilltown Baptist Church, as it came to be known, remained a branch of the Montgomery church until 1781 when Hilltown was constituted as a separate church.
Lower Hilltown Baptist Church and Cemetery Site, 1999
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By his will he gave "unto the Inhabitants of Hilltown Aforesd for ever, The Meeting House Erected by the Graveyard, together with the Graveyard to bury their Dead in and all Others far & Near Whites and Blacks, such as are Guilty of self Murder only I reject & Deny to be Buried in ye sd Grave Yard or in any Part of my Land..."