Welcome to First Baptist Church, Bemis

116 Bemis Lane
Jackson, TN  38301

"Loving Jesus and Making Him Known"


A Look at Our History


The history of First Baptist Church Bemis is inextricably woven with the history of the community of Bemis. Bemis was founded in l900 by Judson Moss Bemis, head of he Bemis Brothers Bag Company, known then as the Jackson Fibre Company. At first, the entire town worshipped together in the Bemis Union Church built by the Bemis company and dedicated in 1908.

In 1908 Harrison Herron deeded a lot for the expressed purpose of establishing a Baptist church to be called Herron Chapel. The title was vested in the trustees of First Baptist Church of Jackson until such time as a Baptist church could be organized. In 1911, fifty men and women began holding services in the Modern Woodmen of the World building. The first pastor is believed to have been a Reverend Hastings of Union University. In 1912 a building was erected, the second pastor, Rev. C. C. Morris was called, and the church came into the Central Baptist Association, a forerunner of the Madison-Chester Association. That first church seated 195 and was valued at two thousand dollars.




Through the years the church has grown, adapted, and changed as necessary to meet the needs of the community and the church membership.

The church remodeled its building in 1924, added an educational annex in 1955, and built a new sanctuary in 1958, at which time the name was changed from Herron Chapel Baptist Church to First Baptist Church.

A large building was added in 1993 which pro-vided new staff offices, a library, nursery rooms, a kitchen, and a fellowship hall that seats 350. The half-million dollar building was paid for by the time it was completed. Another addition was completed in 2004 at a cost of more than 900 thousand dollars. This 2-story addition included a gymnasium, bathroom/locker room facilities, storage space, two staff offices, a conference room, and storage space, two staff offices, a conference room, and eight classrooms. It also provided another beautiful entrance to the building.










Fourteen different pastors and eight interim pastors guided the church throughout these years of growth and change. The church licensed nine and ordained seven men to preach the gospel. More than fifty men have been ordained as deacons.

The mission of the church began when the founding fathers saw a need for a Baptist church in the village of Bemis; however, the Lord Jesus commissioned in Acts 1:8 “ … ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Through His love, First Baptist Church Bemis has reached beyond the village of Bemis, spreading His love around Madison County, across Tennessee, throughout the United States and into other countries (e.g., Honduras, Romania, Russia).

The church has a history of which we can all be proud. It has the promise of an even brighter future. Each one of us can have a vital part in fulfilling that promise if we have the clear commitment so evident in the people who shaped our history. During this 100th anniversary celebration, let us all pledge that commitment for the glory of God!