Monday, October 04, 2021

Elizar Buckner

Who was Elizar Buckner, member of Mt. Carmel Church? The minutes say that Elizar Buckner joined by experience September 1869. No one previously has seemed to fill the bill. The spelling in the minutes, at least the way Aunt Ada Woolverton transcribed it, is “Elizar.” (There was an Elijah Buckner, but he died before 1869.) 

Julius Buckner and Sarah Elizabeth Funderburk (of the Butts County, Georgia and Pine Hill, Texas Buckners) had a daughter named Ann E. Buckner. She was born in 1851. She married Benjamin Franklin Jones in 1884. Some of the family trees on Ancestry give her full name as Anna Elijah Buckner – though I have not been able to confirm where they get the middle name. She would have been a relative of John Sparkman’s wife Martha, so her joining Mt. Carmel seems a possibility. She would have been about 18 when she joined, about right for the time period.

On Find-A-Grave: Ann Buckner Jones

Elizar Buckner is mentioned in A list of the members of Mt. Carmel Church and Mt. Carmel Church connections, which at the time I simply listed as undetermined.

Tuesday, September 07, 2021

More information on two members

Alabama Florence Elam and Anna America Elam, daughters of Joel Elam and Sarah Stamps, are mentioned here and here in the Mt. Carmel blog. Both were members of the Mt. Carmel Church, probably joining by experience sometime before the 3rd Sunday in October 1867 (since their joining is not mentioned in the extant minutes). Both were dismissed by letter from the Mt. Carmel Church on November 14, 1868.

Ann America (or Anna) Elam was born in Alabama, probably Talladega County, around 1846. The Elam family was in Rusk County by July 8, 1860. She traveled with her family to Johnson County, Texas sometime after September 19, 1870 (the date they were enumerated in the 1870 census) and before July 14, 1873 (when her sister Ida died). There in Johnson County, on January 20, 1874, she married Jesse Mercer Gunn, and they had 3 children (Charles Ponnie, Don Pedro, and Mae). She was still living when enumerated on June 10th for the 1880 census. J. M. Gunn died in September of 1881. According to A Memorial and Biographical History of Johnson and Hill Counties, Texas (page 417) Ann had died before 1892. A number of researchers have confused Ann with Gunn’s first wife, Amanda Annie Gray, who died in 1872.

Alabama Florence Elam was born in Alabama, probably Talladega County, around 1848. She was 21 years old at the time she died, according to the U. S. Federal Census Mortality Schedule. She died in August of 1869 in Rusk County, Texas. The location of her burial is unknown.

Monday, August 09, 2021

Chinquapin Springs

When Smyrna Baptist Church had a meeting house at the Chinquapin community, they walled up a spring with heart pine lumber to use for baptizing. Here is a picture from several years back.

The old Chinquapin Spring baptizing hole

Friday, January 01, 2021

A. J. Kirkland

From a brief biography of Allen John Kirkland. A. J. Kirkland may not a household name, but 50 years ago he was extremely well-known in this area, and quite well-known across Texas. I happened across this online biography. Though born in Angelina County, he spent much of his life and ministry as a preacher and educator in Rusk County. 
Dr. Kirkland’s earliest ambition was to be a lawyer. Center was the county seat of Shelby County, and when the family made their weekly trips to town, Dr. Kirkland went first to the courthouse to hear the trials, sometimes spending the whole day there. The family always knew to look for him there first when time came to go home. He nourished this ambition to be a lawyer until about 19 years old when he became convinced God had called him to preach. Those in later years who saw his keen logical mind and rapier wit at work on the debate platform can well imagine how formidable he would have been in the courtroom arguing a case.

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Obadiah Dodson: Buried in Rusk County

...but ministered much elsewhere. Below are bits and pieces about Dodson that I have gleaned from books and the world wide web. In connection with Rusk County, Dodson wrote that when he came to Rusk County there was only one Missionary Baptist Church.
“...I found but one Baptist church in Rusk county, known as missionary, instead of Eastern Texas.”
See HERE and HERE.
“One of the early influences of the Baptist faith in this area of West Tennessee was a preacher named Obadiah Dodson. He preached throughout West Tennessee and helped to establish the Big Hatchie Association, and was instrumental in establishing churches at Middleburg and Clover Creek.”
Hardeman County, by Lisa C. Coleman, p. 37
“Clover Creek Church, United Baptist, situated in Hardeman County, Tennessee, was constituted Saturday preceeding the third Lord’s Day in March and the year of our Lord 1826 by Elders Obadiah Dodson and Cornelius McClolisc.”
“The Baptist Church at Middleburg was organized on June 17, 1836, when 11 men and women formed the Bethel Missionary Baptist Church. Obadiah Dodson was the first pastor.”
“In 1850, the name of Elder Obadiah Dodson appears among the list of ministers in this association. The first work performed by him, that I have any information of, was the organization of Harmony church, Rusk County, assisted by Elder Ray, in 1850, with fifteen members.
“With this brother I had an intimate acquaintance in Tennessee, in 1826, and labored much with him there up to 1835. He was always an active worker, and in charge of from two to four churches during all the time. When I first knew him he was much opposed to mission combinations, but in a few years became an active, thorough-going missionary, in theory and practice.
“He was a man of some ability and great zeal, mixed with many eccentricities. He appears, in 1851, among the active workers in the Soda Lake Association, as the pastor of five churches.”
“Elder Obadiah Dodson.—Was born in North Carolina, or Tennessee, where his labors as a minister began. He was an active missionary, and seeking a new field about 1847, removed to Arkansas and thence to Louisiana, and became a missionary in the employ of the Louisiana Baptist Convention. He was the author of an excellent work called “Fifteen Reasons for the Proper Training of Children.” He died in DeSoto Parish in 1854.”

Obadiah Dodson wrote Moral Instructor and Guide to Youth, a Book containing Answers to Eleven Biblical Questions; also, Seventeen Propositions upon the Training of Children (Jackson, TN: Gates & Parker, printers, 1844), and Twelve Sermons presented for the Benefit of Saint and Sinner (Jackson, TN: Gates & Parker, printers, 1845).

With “Choctaw Bill” Robinson, organized the Holly Springs Church in Rusk County in 1851.

The Woodland Baptist Church (this name from 1870) was established by Obadiah Dodson in 1835, due to a split in the Brown’s Creek Baptist Church over the subject of missions. (Woodland Baptist Church historical marker)
T. P. Crawford...was ordained and sent out by the Big Black Creek Baptist Church and the Big Hatchie Baptist Association, which was formed at the Big Black Creek Baptist Church by our friend Obadiah Dodson, who helped form the Louisiana Baptist Convention and a pastor of The Big Black Creek Baptist Church.”

In 1849 Dodson a charter member and first pastor of the Maple Springs Baptist Church. See HERE.

Obituary of Elder Obadiah Dodson:
Whereas, The afflicting hand of Providence has visited us during the past associational year, bereaving us of our well beloved and highly esteemed Brother, Elder Obadiah Dodson, therefore
Be it Resolved, That this Association deeply sympathize with the bereaved family of our dear, departed Brother, and feel that the whole Association suffers in common with the family of the deceased an irreparable loss.
Bro: Dodson was a faithful soldier of Jesus; and although his last illness was short, and he was not sensible of the approach of death, yet we feel confident that he has fallen asleep in Christ.
He lived the life of the righteous and his last days were like His.
Minutes of the Grand Cane (La.) Baptist Association, 1854, page 6

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Another Lemuel Herrin obituary

Lemuel Herrin came to Texas from Tennessee in 1841, and quickly entered into ministerial labours here (He was ordained by Rushing Creek Baptist Church near Camden, Tennessee in 1826).  He formed at church at Henderson in 1845.

The following obituary has at least two errors, that he was 98 years old when he died and that he was originally from Henry County, Tennessee. Herrin was born in Georgia, and the writer of the obituary may have only intended to convey that he came to Texas from Henry County. At the least it serves to indicate that the Lemuel Herrin in the 1840 Henry County census is the same Lemuel Herrin who died in Texas in 1852.



The Tennessee Baptist, Saturday, October 16, 1852, p. 4


1840 U. S. Census, Henry County, Tennessee

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Tribute of Respect

A “Tribute of Respect” upon the death of Lemuel Herrin, printed in The Tennessee Baptist (Nashville, Tennessee), Saturday, February 26, 1853, page 4