Early minute books of Hollis Chapel Church were destroyed in a fire at the home of the church clerk. Information about the origin of Hollis Chapel Church was obtained from Mr. Orville T. Brewer, a longtime resident of the community and a deacon in Hollis Chapel Church. Shortly before his death in 1980, he shared what he knew about the early life of the church.
In the late 1880's (exact year not known) the Hollis family gave a half-acre of land on Boiling Springs Road, (now Brandy Hollow), down at the foot of the hill from where the present church is located, to erect a school building. Shortly afterward, the people started holding church services in the school building, with Dennis Clark (denomination not known) as one of the preachers.
In 1893, David and Rachel Lewis, and John and Bettie Sherrill gave two acres of land to the new church and a log building was built on the property, and became known as Hollis Chapel Church.
In 1894, the church united with the Mt. Union Association of General Baptists, officially being recognized as a General Baptist Church.
The Mt. Union Association grew very large in number, and in 1921 Hollis Chapel and eleven other churches in the area requested letters from the Mt. Union Association granting them permission to withdraw and form the Portland Association.
By 1922, the church membership had grown, and on Thanksgiving Day of that year, the men of the church met and laid the foundation for a new church building. The ladies prepared a meal, and they took time out from their labor to hold a Thanksgiving service. This became an annual tradition which continued for more than 30 years.
This building was added to and improved over the next fifty years, until the present sanctuary was constructed in 1973.
OTHER BUILDING PROGRAMS
Parsonage built in 1961.
Fellowship Hall built in 1965, enlarged in 1998.
Families who helped establish and lead the church in its infancy:
Hollis, McCloud, Brooks, Wilkerson, Brewer, Link, Stout, Barnard, Clouse.
Deacons who have served the church: Billy Link, Jim McCloud, John N. Stout, James T. Stout, Fount Barnard, Hoyt Clouse, Roy Clouse, Orville Brewer, William Stout, Lloyd (Jack) Clemmons, Clyde Clouse, James W. Cook, Charles Stephens, Bobby Franklin, David Neagle, Charlie Gregory, Steve White, Fred Grubbs, Henry Ezell, Jimmy Whiticker, Patrick Dalrymple.
Pastors of the Church: 1895,W.B.Deweese; 1896,A.M. Keen; 1898- 1899,F.M. Briley;1902,W. B. Deweese; 1900,W. D. Burnley; 1903-,M. Briley; 1904 John Burnley; 1906 Frank M. Briley; 1908, W. D. Meador; 1913;1915,R. C. Hardison; 1917,S. C. Carter; 1918,R C. Hardison; 1920,E.C. Keen; 1924,J.R. Lewis; 1926,E.C. Keen; 1928,Morris; 1929,J.R. Lewis; 1931,Harris Brown; 1934,Andrew Brown; 1936,Barton Carroll; 1944,Wtllie Bullock; 1949,Hobert Cook; 1953,Harry Civils; 1959,Arnett Creasey; 1961,Coda Johnson; 1965,Hobert Eaton; 1966,Coda Johnson; 1968,Charlie Harper (interim); 1969,David Akin; 1973,John Culbertson; 1976,Mose Byrum; 1981,Baldwin; 1983,Ricky Dickerson; 1984,Don Gaines; 1986,Lowell Baggett; 1992,John Holder (interim); 1993, Kenneth Gregory; 2002,Robert Gilman; 2009,Chris Towe; 2017, Victor Creasy.
This information is taken from the talk with Mr. Brewer, Hollis Chapel Church minutes, Mt. Union and Portland Associations minute books, History of Portland Association and History of Mt. Union Association. Early property dates have been verified as far as possible from deeds on record in Gallatin.