Tag Archives: Keysville

Noah’s Ark Baptist Church, Georgia

Keysville, Burke County

Noah’s Ark Baptist Church was organized in 1864 in Burke County, Georgia. It was one of the founding churches for newly freedmen and women in Burke County. Starting under a brush arbor, the congregation moved into a tenant located near where their current church building stands.

Noah Smith donated land to build the first church. after the first two buildings were destroyed by wind and fire, They moved to their following location, where two more buildings were built. The building above was built in 1883 at a cost of $1900. It was in use until 2006. The congregation is now active at a new sanctuary.

This is a common headstone seen in Black church cemeteries throughout Burke and Jefferson counties.
An interesting marker in the cemetery.
An outside view of one of the windows
A view through a broken window shows the state of the church with more than a decade of being unused.

Keysville Evangelistic Church and Cemetery, Georgia

Keysville, Burke County, Georgia

Located across from the post office in Keysville, Georgia is this small church with a mausoleum for Reverend Quillar Vertery Russell (1889-1959) and family. My friend Brian and I had just stopped when a nice Keysville native stopped to chat.

He asked if we were kin to the Russells, and we said no. He said that the Reverend was the church’s founder and owned the lumber mill in Keysville. He told us to go inside.

In diving into the ancestry records, Reverend Russell was a farmer and mill owner. I suspect he founded this church as the Keysville Baptist Church.

Over the years, it changed names to the Keysville Evangelistic Church and finally to the New House of Worship before it closed for good.

Boggs Academy, Georgia

Keysville, Burke County

Boggs Academy, now the Boggs Rural Life Center, is a former boarding school that served the Black community of Keysville, Georgia. Founded in 1906 by the Board of Missions for Freedman, Presbyterian Church, it educated students in the grades 9 through 12. The reputation of the school grew, and it educated Black students from all over the country. Closing in 1984, it was the last remaining boarding school built for the education of Black youth.

The campus is quite large and some parts are being restored. These photos show only a few of the buildings in existence.

Boggs Dining Hall
Boggs Dining Hall
Classroom Building
Classroom Building
Classroom Building
Gymnasium
From the February 14, 1925 issue of The True Citizen