Chatfield Baptist Church
Historical Marker
Chatfield, Navarro County, Texas


Historical Markers || Chatfield Community || Religion Index


Located at: 8323 N. E. 1100th St., Chatfiled, TX

Photo by Dana Stubbs



Reportedly the owner of one hundred slaves and 1280 acres of land, Robert Hodge settled in this area in 1849. Hodge allowed his slaves to organize two churches -- a Baptist church and an African Methodist Episcopal Church. They shared a building known as the Colored Community Church of Chatfield with the Rev. Z. T. Pardee as pastor. By 1858 the Baptist congregation formed by Hodge's slaves was part of the Chatfield Baptist Church. In that year the Chatfield Baptist Church joined the Richland Baptist Association. During this time, white pastors preached to both white and black congregations, one in the morning and one in the evening. After emancipation many freed slaves remained in the area. They became both sharecroppers and landowners. One distinguished local family was that of Allen R. Griggs (1850-1922), a Baptist minister dedicated to the education of black Texans. His son, Sutton Elbert Griggs (1872-1933), was born in Chatfield. A minister who was heavily involved in Texas Baptist life, Sutton E. Griggs became a noted African American writer. The Navarro Baptist Association was formed in 1887 and the Chatfield Baptist Church transferred its membership to the new organization. The town of Chatfield reached its peak in the 1890s with a population of 500. The Chatfield Baptist Church congregation continues to uphold the traditions of its founders through worship and service to the community. (1999)


The text of the historical markers have been posted here with the permission of the Texas Historical Commission

Navarro County TXGenWeb
Copyright March, 2009
Edward L. Williams & Barbara Knox