Our History

Timber Ridge Baptist Church was formed on June 14th, 1805.  Following what was known as “The Great Revival of the 1800’s” during the closing years of the 1700’s and the first few years of the 1800’s, the members of Little Otter Church (later to be called Bedford Baptist Church) were led by the Holy Spirit to start two new churches in the Bedford area.  One of these was to become Timber Ridge Baptist Church, and the other would become Suck Spring Baptist Church.  The Pastor of Little Otter Church, Rev. Isham Fuqua, also served as the initial Pastor at the two new churches.

The first building where the church met was called the Lowry Meeting House, near the present church location.  It was a one room log cabin, constructed on one and one fourth acres of land purchased from William B. Lowry for the equivalent of about $20.  (For comparison, the salary of one of the early church Pastors was $50 per year.)  In the early 1820’s, the one room log cabin was taken down, and another building was erected in its place. At that time, the name of the building was changed to Timber Ridge Baptist Church, named after the home place of William B. Lowry called "Timber Ridge". 

Between 1848 and 1853, funds were raised and a new church building was constructed on the church’s present location.  This 1853 structure is still part of the present Timber Ridge Baptist Church building.  It is known by the congregation as “the old sanctuary”, and is the portion nearest Timber Ridge Road, with the wide brick steps leading up to its entrance.

In 1948, the church members decided that more space was needed for additional Sunday School classes.  The existing building was jack-lifted, and ten rooms were constructed under the existing sanctuary.  In 1960, both stories of the wood-sided church building was encased in brick.  In 1966, additional educational and fellowship space was added in a two-story addition at the rear of the church building, and an indoor baptistery was added in the sanctuary.  Up until that time, believers were baptized in the creek at Lowry, VA about a half mile from the church. 

The church membership continued to grow, and in the early 1970’s, it was decided that a new church sanctuary (large room for worship) was needed.  The sanctuary was completed in 1975, and is currently used for our primary church worship services.  It included a new baptismal pool, a choir loft, rooms for council and storage beside the pulpit, and a large multi-purpose fellowship hall with a kitchen and classrooms underneath.

In 2010, a new entrance foyer project was completed, which provided many benefits to the existing building.  The first floor provides a formal covered entrance for members and guests, a larger and more welcoming foyer to greet one another, a new nursery with more convenient access, additional restrooms, and additional access to the first floor classrooms.  The second floor includes new offices for the Pastor and Secretary, (The old Secretary’s office contained the second floor air conditioning unit!) a new large children’s classroom, a kitchen and storage space, and additional restrooms, all which tie into the existing second floor classrooms and the old sanctuary.   

* Most of this information was taken from Along the Timber Ridge Trail, a documentary book written in 1971 by the Pastor of Timber Ridge Baptist Church at that time, William H. Pearson.   This book contains much more information about the history, ministries, business, meetings, discipline, and people of Timber Ridge Baptist Church.  Copies are available at the church office.

** Thomas A. Markham scanned several of the photographs used in this page.  The Markhams have served at Timber Ridge for many years, and Tommy operates a website dedicated to the history of the church and some of its people.  http://www.tommymarkham.com/TimberRidge/TimberRidge-1.htm