Mt. Zion Baptist Church and Cemetery

Pull out your holy water because this abandoned church in central Texas definitely possessed my interest. The cemetery with well-dated plots and unmarked burial sites surrounded this structure with the faded message of “Help Restore Me” painted on the front wall. A cultish altar draped with red shag carpets overlooked limited rows of pews covered in dust and cobwebs. What made this even more unnerving was the vintage Halloween decorations laid out on the pews in the back.

A historical marker from the Texas Historical Commissions posted on the grounds reads as follows: “Pioneer area settlers organized the Mt. Zion Baptist Church in 1852 on land donated by James R. Hines. Early ministers included notable Baptist leaders from Old Baylor College at nearby Independence. The church building was dismantled and rebuilt in the new town of Burton on land donated by F. A. Rice and A. Groesbeck in 1882. At that time the congregation was renamed Burton Baptist Church. The sanctuary was rebuilt after being damaged in the 1900 storm and on Feb. 18, 1983, it was moved here to its original site. It now serves as a reminder of the area’s rich pioneer heritage.”

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© John Marrows All Rights Reserved

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