The First Baptist Church of Mount Carroll, established in 1853, was closely associated with Shimer College, particularly during the Seminary period. Frances Shimer and Cindarella Gregory were the 32nd and 33rd members of the church; Henry Shimer originally came to Mount Carroll following the first pastor, J.V. Allison, who had baptized him as a young man.
A Baptist revival held at the Seminary played a key role in precipitating the crisis of 1857.
- Carroll County: A Goodly Heritage
On the evening of July 28, 1853, a meeting was held at Reverend J. V. Allison's house in Mount Carroll for the purpose of forming a church. Mr. Allison was elected chairman and Lewis Chrisman, secretary. Baptist churches in the area were invited to send delegates to be present on the fourth Sunday in August for the purpose of recognizing them as a regular Baptist church. "Brothers" Allison, Carpenter, Rinewalt, Jefferies, and Chrisman were instructed to prepare articles of faith and a church covenant. They decided to adopt the New Hampshire Articles of Faith. On August 26, church letters of the fourteen founders were read and accepted and the experience of two others accepted as meriting baptism and membership. The founding services were held the following Sunday, August 28, 1853, and J.V. Allison was extended the right hand of fellowship as the pastor of the First Regular Baptist Church of Mount Carroll.