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Habersham County Historical Markers

Grace Protestant Episcopal Church

  • Source: Byron Hooks
  • Marker: Grace Protestant Episcopal Church
  • Location: At the church at Wilson and Green Streets in Clarkesville


The first Episcopal service in Clarkesville was held Oct. 28, 1838, by the Rev. Mr. Ezra B. Kellogg, sent from N. Y. to the Diocese of Georgia as a missionary to this section. On Dec. 12, 1838, at his home, Grace Church was organized for three local Episcopal families and the many coastal families of the denomination who spent their summers here. On April 15, 1839, this, the sixth Episcopal Church in the State, was admitted to the Diocese. On June 7, 1839, this square acre lot was purchased from James Brannon for $100. For the first year services were held in the Methodist Church and Clarkesville Academy.

In 1841, the Rev. J B. Gallagher succeeded as Rector. Under his guidance, this building, begun in 1839, was completed in 1842. It was consecrated Oct 6, 1842 by the Rt. Rev. Stephen Elliott, JR., (first) Bishop of Georgia, who reported it as “a very neat wooden building, with tower and bell, prettily located and an ornament to the village.”

Among prominent early members were: Richard W. Habersham, Sr., John R. Mathews, Wardens: Alexander Erwin, Benjamin F. Patton, George D. Phillips, John R. Stanford. Samuel A. Wales, John S. Dobbins, Dr. Phineas M. Kollock, Jacob Waldberg. Vestryman: Richard W. Habersham. Jr., George R. Jessup, lay delegates to the convention that admitted this church to the Diocese.