In 1833 the founders of Olive Branch Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) met for worship at Hill Pleasant Farm. By 1835, the congregation had built a brick church on land donated by Dr. Charles M. Hubbard and Mary Henley. During the Civil War, Union soldiers occupied the church; they reportedly slept in the gallery and stabled their horses in the sanctuary. The congregation worshiped in the Farthing house until 1866, when the church was restored to usable condition. With that exception, Olive Branch Christian Church, one of the oldest churches of the Disciples of Christ in Virginia, has been in continuous use since its construction.
The Olive Branch Christian Church is one of the oldest churches of the Disciples of Christ in Virginia. In 1833, twenty “Disciples of Christ” met at Hill Pleasant farm to worship and eventually constructed the original church building in 1835 (OBCC). The Disciples of Christ emerged during the Second Great Awakening in the 19th century (McAlister, 27).
During the Civil War, Union soldiers used Olive Branch as an outstation. The cavalry used the galley as sleeping quarters and the sanctuary as a stable. The pews and flooring of the church was used for fuel and the windows broken during this war. The Church was not returned to usable condition until 1866, until which time the congregation worshipped in the Farthing House (OBCC).
The Church does regular services for the public today.
McAlister, Lester G and William E. Tucker. Journey in Faith: A History of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). St Louis: Chalice Press, 1975.
Olive Branch Christian Church. “History”. www.ob-cc.org (accessed March 8, 2012).
Historical Marker “Olive Branch Christian Church W-28,” courtesy of Lindsey Smith, 2012.
“Olive Branch Christian Church-Present Day,” courtesy of Lindsey Smith, 2012.