Our History

Centennial Celebration
Help us ceBlacknall100_color_CMYKlebrate Blacknall’s 100th birthday! Join together in unique ways to commemorate this past century of God’s goodness, like worshiping with past leaders, breaking bread over a historical bowl of Brunswick stew, or building up the walls of a new Habitat for Humanity home. In marking these many years of Christian community, let usĀ  worship and serve together.

Centennial Celebration Dinner – Saturday, February 27, 6-9 p.m.
Durham Convention Center, Downtown Marriott. Registration open November 1. Look for more details soon!

Centennial Habitat for Humanity Build
In honor of the many hands that built Blacknall’s house of worship 100 years ago, let us use our hands in raising walls and hammering nails to build a new Durham home. Look for more details soon!

Centennial Finale Celebration Picnic – October 2016

Our roots in Durham are deep aFirst BMPCnd date back more than 100 years. On Sunday afternoons in the early 1890’s, brothers Richard and James Blacknall, both Elders in Durham’s First Presbyterian Church, along with their wives, would ride the train out to the Erwin Textile Mill village to conduct Sunday School in an abandoned barroom. By 1916 the “mission” had grown sufficiently that a frame building was constructed, and the congregation was established as a Presbyterian Church, with the Blacknall family memorialized in the name. The core of the current brick building was constructed in 1923.

Engaging with the University Community
During the 1960’s the textile mill was phased out, and the church’s focus turned to the Duke campus under the leadership of Pastor Bob Henderson. And at the height of the civil rights movement, in 1967, Blacknall became the first mainline church in Durham to integrate. To meet the needs of the growing congregation, due to the influx of Duke students and young professionals, an Education Building was added in 1964, further extensions and renovations were constructed in 1971 and 1994, and then came the major transformation of the facilities in 2006. The new additions brought offices, classrooms, and a fellowship hall and kitchen.

Building Collage
For more information, check out Blacknall featured on the Durham, NC historical archive site, Open Durham, or contact the Church Office.