Gates Chapel is a small, predominantly black community on Farm Road 417 two miles south of Shelbyville in southern Shelby County. It began as a church and school community. The settlement grew up around the Gates Chapel Baptist Church, which was organized in 1913 and named for Robert G. Gates, its founder and first pastor. The community's school had been consolidated with a neighboring district school by 1938. In 1981 Gates Chapel consisted of the church, a small cemetery, and widely scattered houses.
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