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Cumberland Baptist Church Record Book, 1856-1896

Cumberland Baptist Church was founded in 1810 by Joseph Jenkins. The church first met in a log building. Members of Cumberland Baptist church met alternately at Booker's Meeting House and Tar Wallet Meeting House between 1836 and 1843 when the congregation divided. The members living near Tar Wallet formed a separate church and the remaining members constituted Cumberland Baptist Church. The congregation met at Booker's Meeting House from 1856 until 1858 when the congregation began meeting at Jenkins' Meeting House.

Cumberland Baptist Church Record Book, 1856-1896, records the church's monthly and quarterly meetings. Information found includes date and location of meetings; names of members attending meetings; election of church officers; reports of church officers; reports to James River Association providing the number of members both white and African American; resolutions passed by church membership; and decisions made by the church membership related to the activities of the church such as excommunication of members, reconciliation of church members, and baptism of new church members. The church's membership included African Americans most of whom were slaves of church members. The record book lists the names of slaves baptized and their owners. It also records the withdrawal from the church of African American members in 1866 for the purpose of forming a Baptist church for African Americans.

The record book includes an index that lists in alphabetical order the names of church members. The index includes additional information such as the year the individual joined the church, the year they were removed from the membership roll, and the reason for their removal (excommunication, death, transfer of membership, etc.)

Conservation was performed by the Library of Virginia Conservation Lab in 2020 and funded by a donation made by Georga S. Williams to the Library of Virginia Foundation's Adopt Virginia History Program.