Pine Torch Church is one of the oldest churches in Alabama and one of only four surviving log churches. Click here to read about all of Alabama’s log churches.
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The church is located in the Bankhead Forest in Lawrence County at the intersection of Country Roads 70 and 73. See a map below the story.
Several online sources say it was built in the 1890s but a sign at the site claims in was built in the 1840s. According to legend, Pine Torch got its name from the pine knots that were set ablaze to light the building after dark.
It is made of hand-hewn logs. The original floor, made of hand-hewn poplar planks, was stolen piece-by-piece and was replaced in 1940, according to a historic marker at the site. The original roof was made of hand-split wooden shingles. It was later replaced with tin.
Behind the church is a cemetery whose grounds are covered with sand to make maintenance easier. It had some interesting old headstones. We also saw what appeared to be bobcat prints in the sand so lookout for wildlife if you go there.
A newer and larger wooden church was built at the back of the property. It is still in use.
A newer church at the site