First Presbyterian Church Golden Hand – Port Gibson, Mississippi - Atlas Obscura

First Presbyterian Church Golden Hand

Port Gibson, Mississippi

A steeple in the shape of a golden hand pointing straight up commemorates Zebulun Butler, the first full-time pastor of this Mississippi church. 

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The first full-time pastor of Port Gibson’s First Presbyterian Church was Zebulun Butler, who was known to punctuate his sermons by stabbing the sky with his finger. This was in 1860, and his congregation liked the gesture so much that instead of a cross atop its very high church steeple, it placed a big, gold-painted wooden finger.

It has been replaced since, as woodpeckers took their toll on the first one, and the wooden hand was replaced with one made of sheet metal in 1903. That 10-foot tall hand was given a fresh coat of gold in 1989, and again in 2017, at a cost of nearly $40,000.

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December 20, 2022

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