Church History

Church Founded

In the summer of 1871 (or 1869 according to some records), the Blanchard River Church of Christ was organized by Philip Axline. It initially met in a school house called “Sixteen” located about three miles from the present site of the church building.  The congregation’s original members were David and Charity (Miller) Higgins, Thomas and Lavina (Friedly) Chamberlin, and Isaac and Emily (Gilmore) Miller. 

From this membership, Chamberlin was appointed elder while Higgins and Miller were named deacons.  These three men also served as a building committee, which commissioned George Stringfellow to erect a church building on a plot of ground presented by Higgins. 

The building was completed (on the present site) at an approximate cost of $1,200 and was dedicated on November 17, 1871 by William Dowling of Kenton.  Growth was rapid, and a Bible School was soon established under the superintendence of Enos Shannon; by the next summer, attendance averaged approximately 45 per Sunday.

Surviving Calamity

Around one o’clock on the morning of May 14, 1886, a tornado totally destroyed the church building.  Although bits of wreckage lay strewn across adjacent fields, the pulpit Bible was found lying on the floor undamaged.  The building was rebuilt in the same year and remained— structurally—basically the same until the summer of 1978.

Present Day

In 1940, the community building was bought and moved from Dunkirk to its present site.  In 1950, a basement was dug; and, in 1957, three additional acres of land (now parking lots and lawn) were willed to the church. In 1978 the church and the community building were connected with the addition of the education wing. Since its organization, the Blanchard River Church of Christ has witnessed well over 500 baptisms and still remains strong and dedicated in the service of the Lord.


15745 OH-81, Dunkirk, OH 45836

Sunday School: 9:30-10:30 A.M.

Worship Service: 10:30 A.M.

Pastor Dave