Rev. Donté L. Jackson is the third of five children born to Rev. & Mrs. James C. Jackson, Sr. He is a native of Rand, West Virginia. Pastor Jackson was saved at a young age under the ministry of his uncle, Bishop Howard J. Franklin of Atlanta, Georgia.Pastor Donté began his service to the Lord playing the drums at age 2. Later as God began to bless his gift, the Charleston Area Community Choir where his mother and father met, would soon become his next platform to minister from age 6-13 under the direction of the esteemed Dr. Ethel Caffie-AustinAt age 13, Pastor Jackson’s mother who directed the youth choir noticed that her son could sing and at age 13 gave him his first (of many) solos. Pastor Jackson’s gift of singing has opened doors for him to sing with many of today’s leading gospel artist. Prior to coming to First Baptist in Huntington, Rev. Jackson served as the praise and worship leader and Associate Minister for the First Baptist Church of Charleston, Rev. Paul Dunn, Pastor. Pastor Donté also was also memberof the Stellar Award nominated Gospel Recording Artist “Nu Tradition”.Pastor Jackson began his ministry of the preached word in July of 2000, following the example of his natural father, and through the leading of his heavenly father hasclaimed preaching the gospel (in the pulpit or outside it) as his love. Rev. Donté graduated from DuPont High School, and since has attended both Marshall University (Huntington, WV) and West Virginia State University (Institute, WV) and in November of 2010, Rev. Donté L. Jackson was called to Pastor the First Baptist Church of Huntington, West Virginia, becoming the church’s 17th Pastor since its inception in 1872. Rev. Jackson is married to the love of his life, Christina R. Caul-Jackson of
Huntington, West Virginia; they are the proud parents of Olivia Grace Jackson.
First Baptist Church is located at 801 Sixth Avenue in the downtown section of Huntington, West Virginia. Six persons under the advisory leadership of Reverend William Bryant organized the church in 1872. They worshiped in a log cabin on Norway Avenue, approximately four miles southeast of the present site.
In the early days. Huntington was populated by the Negro Migration from Virginia. The expansion of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad quickly transformed farmland into a striving city. Huntington was founded in 1872 with a population of approximately 6,000. However, by 1892 the city had grown to a population of over 31,000 people. 3,000 of which were of the “colored population”. The railroad brought a diversity of industries, opportunities and people to the area. In the midst of this splendid growth the development of the “colored population” also prospered in labor and support service jobs. The influence and involvement of “Negroes” in the tri-state area predates the city of Huntington and First Baptist Church.
In 1841 a slave master, Pap Twyman set thirty-seven slaves free in Virginia and gave them $10,000 to settle in Ohio. They settled in Burlington, Ohio just across the river from Huntington where a Negro population had already put down roots. In the early years, prior to 1872, the “colored population” worshiped at Macedonia Baptist Church in Sybene, Ohio, established in 1837.