In April of 1877, a one-room church building was erected on land deeded by W. D. Battle. Since the congregation was unable to pay for the building, one forth was deeded to the Methodists of the community and one fourth to the Presbyterians. By 1916, those congregations had built their own churches, and the building was once again solely Saltillo Baptist Church.
Traditionally, ministers were paid with food items, but in 1889, the pastor was paid $21.00 per year. By 1897, the pastor's salary had increased to $49.50 per year. Most of the pastors prior to 1900 did not live in Saltillo while filling the pastorate of the church.
In 1931, the congregation had the misfortune of losing its building fund money when the banks failed, but by 1941, recovery had occurred with the addition of two new Sunday school rooms. In 1945, a new building fund was started, and by 1946, four more rooms were added. 1948 saw the addition of four more Sunday school rooms, a kitchen, a baptistry, and a small auditorium.
In 1952, a parsonage fund was established, and by 1954, the church had called its first full-time pastor, Rev. Robert G. Holmes. The parsonage was completed in 1955, and three years later, a new two-story educational building with 15 Sunday school rooms became a part of the FBCS landscape.
In 1968, another building fund was started, followed by a decision in 1970 to purchase 4 and 1/2 acres of land from Mr. and Mrs. L. Q. Conlee. The decision was to erect a new church plant with construction starting in 1971. The first service was conducted in the new sanctuary on May 7, 1972. The new church facility consisted of a sanctuary capable of seating approximately 400, educational space for 375, a kitchen, and a large fellowship area.
In 1976, a site for a new parsonage was purchased with construction being completed in 1977. That same year, the old church property was sold and a new van was purchased. Seven years later in 1984, site preparation began for a new educational building, which was occuppied in 1986. The new facility contained 22 Sunday school rooms, a fellowship hall, a kitchen, and a new office suite.
In February of 1995, a renovation and expansion of the sanctuary and foyer was completed increasing the capacity of the worship center to 530. At the same time, the parking area was resurfaced and expanded providing 270 parking spaces. Since that time, extensive renovations have been taking place in the educational facility, including new flooring and a redesigned office suite. Additional landscaping has increased the beauty of the grounds as well. However, we are not done yet.
The history of FBCS is still being written. On August 6, 2006, our church voted overwhelmingly to relocate to another site in accord with God's vision for growth. Then in September, our church voted just as overwhelmingly to purchase 30 acres of land adjacent to Highway 45. Presently, we are partnering with Injoy Stewardship Services as we enter into the beginning phases of our capital stewardship campaign. As anyone can see, we are a body of Christ that is proud of the influences from our past, and we are excited about the impact we will have for Christ in the future. Come and see where we have been, but most importantly, come and be a part of where we are going!
We will see you soon at FBCS.