St. John's-In-The-Prairie

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St. John's-In-The-Prairie
St Johns in the Prairie 01.jpg
The church in 2008
St. John's-In-The-Prairie is located in Alabama
St. John's-In-The-Prairie
St. John's-In-The-Prairie is located in the United States
St. John's-In-The-Prairie
LocationSR 4, Forkland, Alabama
Coordinates32°38′51″N 87°52′54″W / 32.64750°N 87.88167°W / 32.64750; -87.88167Coordinates: 32°38′51″N 87°52′54″W / 32.64750°N 87.88167°W / 32.64750; -87.88167
ArchitectUpjohn, Richard
Architectural styleGothic Revival
NRHP reference #75000313[1]
Added to NRHPNovember 20, 1975

St. John's-In-The-Prairie, now known as St. John's Episcopal Church, is a historic Episcopal church in Forkland, Alabama.


The congregation was organized in 1834 by Caleb Ives, a pioneer missionary, and was admitted to parish status in 1838. The first rector was the Rev. John Avery. The wooden Gothic Revival structure was built in 1859 on a Southern plantation to the designs of Richard Upjohn.[1] It was a Methodist church, built on a Southern plantation south of Greensboro in the Antebellum South.[2]

After the American Civil War of 1861-1865, the Methodist planter had lost most of his assets.[2] He ran afoul of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South after he built a saloon from the ruins of his plantation house.[2] As a result, he decided to convert the congregation to an Episcopal church and move the building across the Black Warrior River to its present location in 1878.[2][3] Others suggest he had sold alcohol to the Union Army and moved to flee veterans of the Confederate States Army.[2]

As of 2017, the church still has congregants.[2]

Heritage significance[edit]

It was added to the National Register of Historic Places on November 20, 1975.[1]


  1. ^ a b c National Park Service (2008-04-15). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  2. ^ a b c d e f John Archibald, See what's inside the mystery church in Alabama's Black Belt, The Birmingham News, July 15, 2015
  3. ^ "Early Churches of Greene County". Greene County Historical Society. Retrieved 24 November 2008.

External links[edit]