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History of Hillcrest

History of Hillcrest

In March of 1927, a small group of Baptists met to organize a church in Austin. There were only five Baptist churches in Austin at that time. Emmanuel Baptist (later to become Hillcrest) organized with 30 charter members, and Rev. C. L. Sansing was called as pastor. The first official act of the church was to take an offering for missions.

A building that belonged to the Swedish Baptists located at 18th and San Jacinto streets was purchased. This building was used until 1933, at which time the property was rezoned and sold to an oil company. Hillcrest relocated to 19½ St. and East Avenue and began a building program. The first strong tithing program was begun during this time – truly an act of faith during the difficult Depression Era.

The church would again relocate in 1948, when plans were made for the construction of I-35, which would take in the church’s property. A fire completely destroyed the building on October 17, 1948, before a new building could be built. The steadfast congregation met in the John B. Winn School until the fall of 1949, when the first unit of the new facility at 28th and Robinson was completed. Hillcrest experienced great growth, and added an auditorium and additional educational space by acquiring the adjoining properties.

Hillcrest made much progress in the 1970’s, including another relocation. Once again God provided in a most remarkable way – He gave us a mountain in a strategic location in northwest Austin. In April of 1973, Hillcrest relocated to its present 3838 Steck Avenue address.

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