History of First Denton
The History of First Baptist Denton
In 1858, twelve men and women founded what is now First Baptist Church Denton. It was only one year after the city of Denton began. The church was known as the Union Baptist Church. It wasn't until 1880 that the church was renamed First Baptist Church Denton. The Reverend H.S. Holdman was the first pastor. In 1873, the church acquired a piece of property and constructed its first building. It was a white steeped building which sat on the corner of Hickory and Cedar.
In 1897, the church membership had increased so much that it required a new building. The new building housed 400 people and faced West Hickory. Sadly, in 1917 the church building burned to the ground. The church then purchased a lot on West Oak Street and built a beautiful brick building with tall Greek columns. The first worship service in this building was held in September 1918. The church on Oak Street was home to many influential pastors.
During the tenure of Dr. L.L. Armstrong, the church purchased property on Malone Street in 1961. The ground breaking activities for what is now First Denton’s current home were in 1966 and the first service was held in 1967. Also that year, the Armstrong Christian Life Center was constructed.
In 1984, Dr. Wayne Blankenship was called as pastor. He served until the summer of 1996. Under Dr. Blankenship’s leadership, two new churches were established in Denton: Northwest Baptist Church and North Metro Church.
Dr. Jeff Williams became pastor in 1997 and he leads our congregation of over 4800 at our current location. Under the leadership of Dr. Jeff, First Denton has seen renovation of the CLC and Worship Center in 1999, new full-time minister positions, Vacation Bible School, Upward programs, Elves’ Shelves Christmas Ministry and the opening of The First Refuge Ministry Center. He led us as we celebrated 150 years of ministry in 2008. And he leads us toward our future as we prepare to build a new worship center on our current campus.