Southern Baptist Convention begins
For many years Baptists throughout America, without sectional distinctions, had cooperated in the work of missions. Gradual differences began to surface which were caused by cultural and geographical locations, but the matter came to a head with the issue of slavery. The period from 1832 to 1845 was a most difficult time of irritation, and finally in 1845, division came as the churches of the South concluded that they could best perform the work of missions by operating separately from the churches of the North.
In response to a call from the Board of the Virginia Foreign Baptist Missionary Society, a convention met in Augusta, Georgia, May 8, 1845.
Dr. William B. Johnson had been a prime mover in the establishment of the Triennial Convention and now championed the Southern Baptist Convention. In the May 8th meeting in Augusta, Johnson’s plan was adopted fully, and he was elected the first president of the Southern Baptist Convention. He served two terms in that capacity, from 1845 to 1851.
Dr. Dale R. Hart: Adapted from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 188 – 189
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