ANTIOCH AND REYNO
The location of Antioch Church is of peculiar importance for it was in this church that Current River Association was organized. This note was found on the margin of the minutes of Antioch Church which date back to 1878: "Antioch Church was organized at a school house known as Round Track which was near the N.E. corner of N.W. Secton [sic] 33, near the west side of the pond where J. M. Herron lived." (This was in Township 20, R 3 E). The pond referred to above covers about an acre of ground and is on the west side of the gravel road which extends from Reyno to Old Reyno, exactly one and one-half miles south of U.S. Highway 67.
The old school house was not a very good building in those days if we are to believe a story about it which still lives in that community: It is told that a herd of goats got under the house once during a worship service and behaved very noisily, wholly unmindful that the "sheep" were worshiping above their heads. Someone reached down through the floor and brought a kid up through the crack and turned it lose with the "sheep"! How this effected [sic] the preacher's sermon we are not told.
This church was organized "on the fourth Sabbath in June 1878". It is probably that a church by the same name had existed in this community prior to that date, for in 1858 a church by the name Antioch with postoffice at Cherokee Bay was represented in Bethlehem Association. But no reference in the minutes of the organization was made to a former church.
The presbytery which organized this church was composed of A. Conner, T. J. Watson, and John Magee, who was a deacon in the Shiloh Church. The charter members were as follows:
P. H. Crofford
Bicy J. Story
Mattie J. Reynolds
E. A. Herron
Hester A. McCann
Mary E. Rhodes
(Elder T. J. Watson and Dennis Reynolds held membership soon after the constitution but their names are not listed among the charter members.)
Arthur Conner was perhaps the first pastor. This church believed in "feet-washing" as an ordinance, for the minutes show that on the day it was organized a motion passed "that the church contribute funds for the sacrament and also for buying pans and towels for the purpose of "foot-washing". It is likely that this action was due to the influence of T. J. Watson, who until his dying day insisted there were three church ordinances baptism, Lord's Supper, and "feet washing." We have not found in any of the churches that A. Conner served that the latter was practiced except in this one, and he was not likely called as pastor until after this action was taken. Another odd thing is found in these old minutes: By motion a committee was appointed to "tax the church for the benefit of the pastor * * * and they agreed that each member should pay $2.50 before the meeting of the association that fall." Others who served this church as pastor include J. J. McGuire, H. C. Kirkpatrick, E. H. C. Kenner, W. P. Kime and F. C. Neely.
About the year 1885 a new site was secured and a new house of worship was built about a half mile south of the "Round Track" school house in what was then Reyno. (Named after Dennis Reynolds, who had a mercantile business there.) This was a good new building in 1887 when Knox Belew taught a singing school
in it. In the early part of 1889 "140 elegant chairs were placed in the new church house. They were bought in St. Louis," so reported the Clay County Courier. In February of that year J. H. Milburn preached a week and dedicated the new building.
But on December 28, 1891, the new house was destroyed by a windstorm. W. P. Kime was still pastor at that time. Insurance of about $1000 was carried on this building and it was collected and the house re-built. For several years this was one of the strongest churches in this association. It owned a pastor's home and had half-time preaching. In 1901 when the Frisco railroad was built through this section it missed Reyno about a mile and a half and that spelled doom of the town. Business houses and most of the residences were moved to what is now Reyno, and since that time the old community has been referred to as "Old Reyno."
The church also moved and is still in existance [sic] as the Reyno Church. A house was built, and in 1907 the old home of D. W. Reynolds was bought as a pastor's home. Pastors who have served since then are E. H. C. Kenner, S. F. Gibson, R. L. Lewis, F. C. Neely (1911), C. A. Fowler, J. A. Wheatley, H. Barney, J. W. Harvey, W. A. Cummings, Knox Belew, F. C. Neely (1924), A. B. Constancz, L. F. Bain, Alvin Allison, W. A. Boyer, David Patton, P. O. Freeman, and Clay Roach who is the present pastor. The present building was constructed in 1927 under the pastoral leadership of Knox Belew. It is a beautiful red-brick building with a lovely auditorium which seats about 300 people; it has two Sunday School rooms, and a small basement and cost about $6000. New pews and other improvements totaling more than $1000 were added in 1946. A membership of 115 was reported in 1946. This church entertained the association while it was called Antioch in 1881, 1885, 1888, and after the name changed to Reyno in 1890, 1904, 1905, 1941.
Bethany Baptist Church is located in th ewestern [sic] part of Randolph County about five miles northwest of Ravenden Springs. It was organized in 1874 as a result of the missionary efforts of Eld. B. F. Holford who worked under the mission board of Spring
River Association. This church was represented at State Line Association in 1879 by G. Allison, A. J. Bird, and E. Hill. William English was a clerk of the church and M. M. Jackson was pastor. It repotred [sic] having 40 members at that time. In 1888 A. C. Bird was clerk, H. C. Kirkpatrick was pastor, and messengers to the association were E. T. Lincoln and P. B. Allison. The church had 72 members then. In 1903 J. H. C. Sconce was pastor and the membership was only 35. Others who have served this church as pastor include E. T. Lincoln, H. M. Bunyard, J. C. Diceton, J. W. Sconce, T. B. Allison, W. H. Bradford, E. R. Evans, Alvin Allison, W. M. Orisk, J. W. Shields, and Raymond Sconce who now serves as pastor.
This church has had three houses of worship. The first was a log structure which stood about a mile south of the preesnt [sic] location. This house was replaced by a boxed or frame building which served the congregation until about 1904, when, under the pastoral leadership of Eld. E. T. Lincoln, the site was moved to the present location and a one-room frame house was built which still serves as the house of worship. A membership of 41 was reported in 1946. This church entertained State Line Association in 1890, 1899, 1899, 1905, 1912, and 1921.
The Biggers Church was constituted July 17, 1904. Elder J. A. Wheatley took the lead in organizing this church and served as moderator of the Organizing Council. Lee Bolin served as clerk. The charter members were,
Ben F. Tipton
Robert L. Marshall
A. R. McCann
The church represented that fall in Current River Association. Elder M. D. Bowers was the first pastor. The church used the public school building as a place for worship until a house was built. The building committee consisted of R. T. Boone, S. C. Tipton, Lee Bolin, Sister Berry Wright and Sister R. T. Boone. In September, 1909, this committee reported that a building site had been purchased consisting of four lots, at a cost of $500, only $100 of which was paid down. Eld. D. K. Foster, E. T. Lincoln,
A. J. Lincoln, R. M. Baxter, L. G. Miller, F. C. Neely, J. H. Summers, L. F. Bain, H. W. Johnston, Ray Ryhne, Alvin Allison, an [sic] E. Clark Secoy, have served as pastor of this church. Alvin Allison is the present pastor, this being his second time to serve in this capacity. During the pastorate of E. T. Lincoln in 1913 he was assisted by his brother, Andrew, in a revival which resulted in thirty-three new members, thirty of which were received by baptism. Basil Goff was ordained to the ministry by this church in 1945. This church owns a pastor's home.
On January 27, 1946, the church suffered the loss of its building by fire. The insurance amounted to $2000, which in these days of high cost of building materials and labor would not go far toward building another house. However, the congregation has just about completed the erection of another building which will cost when completed and equipped about $15,000. It will be a beautiful white-brick veneer building with basement, and several Sunday School rooms, of which any town the size of Biggers might well be proud. The building Committee is composed of
S. T. Tipton
Ralph W. Deaver
R. F. Ferguson
Ralph W. Lingle
Mrs. Bee Whittington
Mrs. Beulah Williams
Mrs. Amos Pulliam
The association met with this church in 1911, 1923, and 1934. The membership as reported in 1946 is 229.
FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, CORNING
The Corning Baptist Church was organized April 30, 1887, as a result of mission work done by Eld. A. S. Hall who was employed by the Gainesville Association. He held a revival meeting in which several were converted, and upon completing the organization received fifteen as candidates for baptism. The charter members were,
Mary E. Bishop
F. M. Kirkpatrick
W. P. Lawson
J. I. Howell
Mrs. Mary Thomas
The Organizing Council consisted of Elders A. S. Hall and D. Thorn. The new church sent messengers to Gainesville Association in October, 1887, and reported 46 members, 31 of which had been received by baptism. Eld. A. S. Hall was the first pastor. The following pastors have served the church in the order which their names appear:
A. S. Hall
W. P. Kime
F. C. Neely
W. J. Bearden
O. H. L. Cunningham
J. N. Robertson
S. W. Brumfield
W. H. Meredith
J. T. Fowlkes
J. J. Mathis
L. W. Russel
F. C. Neely
H. E. Van Camp
G. C. Faulkner
Golden E. Neely
Dr. J. S. Compere
Golden E. Neely
U. L. Higgins
L. C. Tedford
The first church house was built about 1889 and was dedicated Nov. 8, 1891. It was a one-room house and stood on the corner where the present building stands. In 1904 under the pastoral leadership of S. W. Brumfield, the house was remodeled and repaired. In 1939 under the pastoral leadership of Dr. J. S. Compere the present structure was built. It cost about $20,000 when all equipment was added, and is one of the best houses of worship among the small towns of northeast Arkansas.
In 1889 this church was received into Current River Association upon petitionary letter. It has represented with only a few exceptions every year since. The association met with this church in 1894, 1935, and 1945. Ministers ordained by this church include John Piland, Roe Shearer, Elmer Ayers, and John L. Jordan. Ministers licensed are Winton Mizel, Earnest Lee Holloway and Thomas Lee Tedford. The present membership of the church is 315.
DATTO MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHRCH [sic]
This church was organizde [sic] April 6, 1902, by Elder James A. Wheatley. The charter members were as follows:
B. C. Malone
H. N. Gowen
W. A. Brown
W. H. Deaton
These had letters of dismission from Reyno, Shiloh, and New Hope. After organization a motion was passed that the name of the church be "Richwoods Baptist Church," but the name of the town was changed soon thereafter to "Datto" (prior to that it was "Day Town"), and on Oct. 4, 1902, the name of the church was changed to Datto. In 1903 the church entertained the annual meeting of Current River Association. In 1907 the membership had grown to 161.
Pastors who have served this church include J. A. Wheatley, E. H. C. Kenner, M. D. Bowers, C A. Fowler, R. L. Powell, Knox Belew, Shelly Cooper, and P. I. Tinker who is the present pastor.
Ministers who have been ordained by this church include the following: Hubert W. Johnston, W. J. Mock, T. S. Cowden, Tom Wilson, E. S. Mizell and Andrew Jack. (Perhaps the last named was only licensed by this church).
This church has built a new house of worship this year at a cost of $8,000. It was dedicated on Sunday, August 31, 1947. This is a beautiful little red-brick house of which any community would be proud. The building Committee consisted of L. C. Smith E. H. Troxel, Soula Herren, and Willie Gowen. The finance Committee consisted of G. E. James, Rue Luter, and Jerald Pond.
Current River Association met with this church in 1903, and 1920. This church left the Association in 1922 and was one of the churches which formed Current River Missionary Baptist Association in 1923. It represents now with Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Association, and will entertain the annual meeting of this body in October, 1947. It reported 98 members in 1946, and a Sunday school of 100.
(Located four miles northwest of Corning)
A Baptist church was organized in the Dell School House on Sunday afternon [sic], September 15, 1946, with the following as charter members: Dennis Davidson, Gussie Davidson, Ernstine Davidson, Pearlie Dean Davidson, Mrs. Langley, Mrs. Myrtle Powell, Gene Roberts, Bertha Roberts, Mary Knowlan, Jimmie Davis, Beatress Davis, Mary Ann Davis, F. J. Roberts, Lawrence Roberts, Frank Roberts, Edith Roberts, Thelma Sullivan, Lois Sullivan, John L. Sullivan, Christine Haysole, Jessie Byes, and Mrs. Rosemary Weaver. The Organizing Council consisted of the following ordained ministers, H. W. Johnston, Charles Shumate, James B. Busby, J. w. Cunnngham [sic], Ernest Gower, L. C. Tedford; and the following ordained deacons: E. Forrest, A. L. Hubbard, M. L. Glenn, L. C. Haynes, Monroe Davis, Joe Davis, Henry McKinney, James Sintell, Lawrence E. Melton, Jim Haynes, and D. L. Word. This church was organized as a result of a revival in which Elders George Anthony and Charles Shumate did the preaching. This enthusiastic congregation carries on a good Sunday school
and is collecting funds to build a house of worship. Mr. O. L. Woods of Corning has given an acre of ground diagonally across from the school lot as a site for the new building. By vote following the organization the congregation chose the name "Dell Baptist Church," and was received at the 1946 session of Current River Association on petitionary letter. Messengers were Gene Roberts, John L. Sullivan, and Dennis Davidson.
HOPEWELL BAPTIST CHURCH (Heelstring)
Location: Ten miles southwest of Corning
In the report on "Destitution" made to Current River Association in 1883 the "community known as Heelstring was almost or entirely without Baptist preaching." In 1886 Hopewell church was received on petitionary letter, the "delegates" being J. Griffon, W. McCann, and W. Holden. They reported 16 baptisms that year, and a total membership of 29. T. J. Watson was clerk, and Gideon Townzen was pastor. The next year T. J. Watson was pastor.
Sometime following this date the church ceased operation, and on August 2, 1908, it was reorganized with the following members: G. W. S. Watson, J. H. Irwin, Hulday Griffin, Lizzy Griffin, Joseph Warren, J. W. Brown, M. L. Russell, Mrs. M. L. (Barbara) Russell, Jane Wilson, and Mary Brown. The minutes show that this new start was due to mission work done by T. J. Watson, who with the asistance [sic] of Anderson Berry, a deacon in
The Datto church, effected the new organization. A marginal note in the old minutes states that the Hopewell Church was named by Mary Watson, wife of T. J. Watson, who died December 8, 1897.
The church has had three houses. The first was about one half mile north of the preesnt [sic] location. On September 5, 1911, a new site (one half acre) was bought from Benjamin Hudson for $15. Shortly thereafter a one room frame building was erected on it. This served as a meeting place until December 1, 1929, when it was destroyed by fire. A new house was built in 1930 at an approximate cost of $3000, under the pastoral leadership of H. W. Johnston. On June 22nd of that year the new house was dedicated with Knox Belew, a former pastor, preaching the sermon.
Other pastors who hae [sic] served this church are M. V. Hinson (1889), T. B. Baker (1896), C. A. Fowler, S. N. Dickinson, Bill Woodson, Wade Hopkins, and C. F. Gwinup who has been full-time pastor since 1941.
The total membership now is 198. Robert Johnson, now pastor of the Baptist Church of Caraway, was ordained to the ministry by this church. The association met here in 1893, 1927, 1937, and 1946.
LANDMARK MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH
This church is located three miles north of Corning on the west side of U. S. Highway No. 67. It was organized at Williams' Mill the second Sunday in July, 1895, by Elders F. C. Neely and J. H. Bristol. Williams' Mill was about one mile east and three quarter miles north of the present site. The school house was used for a meeting house until the church built its own house. Mr. H. H. Williams who owned the mill was converted and baptized by F. C. Neely in 1897 and served as clerk of the church for several years.
The charter members in this organization were S. K. Dungan, _____ Dungan, Lizzie Perren, J. I. Howell, Fannie Howell, and Emily Sheeks. They adopted the Philadelphia Confession of Faith, elected F. C. Neely as pastor, and Fannie Howell, clerk. In their first business meeting after the
organization they voted to
ask for admission into Current River Association and prepared a letter. The messengers elected were S. K. Dungen, J. I. Howell, and Fannie Howell the first record we have found of a woman messenger to the Current River Association.
The minutes of this church have all been kept and compose about the best set of complte [sic] minutes we have found in any of the churches dating back as far as this one does. The early minutes show that most of the business in the monthly Saturday business meeting was devoted to disciplinary matters. Some member was excluded, or was dealt with in almost every meeting. The controversy over "Boards," and "Conventions," and "Paid Secretaries" which was so heated at the turn of the century moved this church to send a resolution to the association in 1901 "that the office of Corresponding Secretary be disposed with." This church sent messengers to the Paragould Convention in November of that year.
Ten members asked for letters of dismission to help establish a church at Moark in 1902. A house of worship was built in 1904 under the pastoral leadership of J. A. Wheatley. The minutes show that chairs for "seating the new house were bought from the Campbellite church in Corning." The remaining debt on the building was paid by seven men Jan 2, 1907, who met on Monday morning at the Corning Bank to pay the debt in full. The house was dedicated March 31, 1907, in connection with the Fifth Sunday Meeting which the church was entertaining. Eld. J. A. Wheatley preached the dedicatory sermon at the noon hour Sunday, and according to the Dell Items in the Clay County Courier the following week the sermon lasted two hours!
Others not already mentioned who have served this church as pastor are S. Abernathy, 1898; E. T. Lincoln, 1889 ff; S. P. Davis, 1903, J. A. Wheatley, 1903 ff; R. L. Powell, 1906 ff; J. A. Ferguson, 1911; W. T. Caldwell; S. N. Dickerson; Knox Belew, 1920; W. J. Mock; C. W.
Penrod, 1930; J. M. Stevens, 1934; J. I. Causey, 1936; R. L. Powell, 1938; J. N. Parish; Henry C. Delaney; Almer (Jack) Bearden is the present pastor. Henry C. Delaney was ordained to the ministry by this church.
The following have served as clerk: Fannie Howell, H. H. Williams, J. P. Howell, Rosa Wertenberger (Mrs. A. N. John-
son), Mrs. Laura Snodgrass, Mrs. Mary Phelps, Mrs. Lennie Lutrell, H. S. Johnson, and Mrs. Grace Brooks.
The church has a present membership of 119. It is identified with the Association Baptists and represents in Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Association.
The Moark Baptist Church is located about six miles north of Corning near the Missouri line. A Baptist Church was organized there as early as 1883, for it represented in the association that fall showing eight members. Eld. F. C. Trice was pastor. This organization must have perished, for no reports or representatievs [sic] to the association appear again until about 1910. J. W. Cunningham reported to the association in 1902 that he had labored some at Moark. The membership in 1914 was 85. The church has had two buildings. We could not learn just when the first was erected, but in 1925 a new house was erected on a new site at a cost of about $4000. The pastor was L. G. Miller, and the Building and Finance Committee was H. Snodgrass, S. W. Smithers, Charles Pollard, William Penrose, and C. C. Richardson. Pastors who have served the church since 1914 are R. L. Powell, Knox Belew, L. G. Miller, H. W. Johnston, J. T. Tippitt, Jess Whitlock, Sam Pillow, and D. C. Applegate, who is serving at present. The association met with this church in 1917, 1929, and 1938. Bro. G. N. Jones was ordained
to the work of the ministry by this church May 9, 1926. The church has now a membership of 157, a Sunday school enrollment of 66, and a Training Union enrollment of 38.
MOUNT PLEASANT EAST
Mount Pleasant (East) Missionary Baptist Chucrh [sic] is located one and one-half miles west of Palatka. It was organized by Col. Timothy Reeves in 1867 who at that time was missionary for Cane Creek Association and who at the annual session of the association that year reported five new churches organized. The location of the church at the time it was organized is uncertain, as the place of meeting in the early days was changed several times. The minutes of March 27, 1869, state that the church voted to move the place of meeting from "the school house near Mr. Hitt's to the school house near Mr. Brown's." In 1871 they met for a service in the home of G. M. McNabb. In 1887 the church voted to move to the Taylor school house. They moved from there to the town of Palatka in 1906 where they later built a house of worship of their own. The name was canged [sic] to Palatka Baptist Church, but some years later the site was moved one and one-half miles west of Palatka and the name Mount Pleasant was restored.
This church was a charter member of the association, and was represented in that first session by R. R. Black, Eli Miller, and James Mulhollen. Eld. A. Conner was a pastor and the church had 34 members. Others who have served as pastor of this church include J. J. McGuire, L. W. Patrick, T. J. Watson, J. C. Taylor, R. L. Powell, J. A. Ferguson, W. M. Mock, H. W. Johnston, W. E. Liddell, J. C. Grider, Shelly Cooper, E. E. Davis, and Silas Roberts who is the present pastor.
Eld. J. A. Wheatley was baptized into the fellowship of this church in 1882, and on July 17, 1869, J. J. McGuire was ordained to the ministry by it. Other preachers ordained by this church include James Graham in 1882, Gideon Townzen, and W. O. Welch, Oct. 16, 1885, and S. B. Baker in 1894.
In 1903 the church voted to represent in the General Association and since that time it has continued as an Associational or Landmark Church. It has not represented in Current River Asso-
ciation since 1922, and represents in Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Association now. It reported 70 members in 1946.
Current Rier [sic] Association met with this church in 1882, 1886, and 1915.
MOUNT PLEASANT WEST (Pittman)
This is one of the oldest churches in Arkansas and possibly is the oldest one with continuous existence. It is located in the northeastern corner of Randolph County in the community which for more than a century and a quarter has been known as Pittman. The exact date of the founding of this church is unknown. One tradition is that there was a Baptist church here as early as 1800. (If this were true it would hae [sic] been the first ever organized on Arkansas soil other than some Catholic missions along the Mississippi). But we have no proof of this and must dismiss it with the statement that it was possible, for a settlement was there that early.
Rev. R. F. Liddell wrote a history of Black River Association (Missouri), a few years ago and he states in it that Mount Pleasant Church (Pittman) was one of the six churches constituting that new association in November, 1835.
In this same account he states this:
"The meeting in 1839 was held at Mount Pleasant near Pittman, Randolph County, Arkansas. This church was organized about 1822 and is still active among the churches of this state."
We inquired of Bro. Liddell the source of his information and this is his reply in part:
"My source of information is from a record compiled by a historical Committee elected in 1910 composed of Rev. J. H. Pennock, M. V. Baird, and J. M. Blaylock Rev. M. V. Baird was one of the pioneer preachers in this section, having come here during the 'fifties.' They had the original copy of the organization of Black River Association, and many of the old minutes."
Some say the year 1857 marks the beginning of this church, but this was perhaps the date of a reorganization, or a revival of the old church. The following were members at that time: Henry Sharp and wife, a Mr. Perkins and wife, Billy Fowler and wife, John Berry and wife, Billy Hawthorn and wife, and possibly others.
J. C. Redwine was ordained to the ministry by this church in 1860, which is to show that the church was active at that date. Records of this is found in Book A in the Court Records of Randolph County. A log structure located on the present site was being used as a house of worship in 1873 when Mrs. Luella Rahm (who furnished the writer valuable information for this sketch) came to this community. In 1890 this log house was torn down and a frame house was built with a Masonic Hall above. This house is still a part of the present building which was remodeled in 1926, and still has a Masonic Hall as a second story. This house occupies a commanding position on the crest of a gently sloping hill and is surrounded by a grove of stately oaks. Hard by this temple of worship is the old Pittman Cemetery where sleep many pioneers of Baptist work in this section. Included in this list are Elders Henry Sharp, D. A. Sharp, Atnhony [sic] Foster, O. H. L. Cunningham, J. W. Cunningham and their faithful wives.
This church is noted for the large number of ministers and useful laymen which it has sent forth into the Master's Vineyard. We give here the list of ordained ministers with dates of ordination which this church produced:
J. C. Redwine 1860
William F. Roach 1861
Henry Sharp 1868
D. A. Sharp
F. C. Trice about 1881
J. W. Cunningham
D. K. Foster 1904
Billy Pickins 1920
J. D. Shemwell 1920
J. B. Bell
R. L. Lewis
B. C. Cunningham
The following have served as pastor:
G. W. Crowder
D. A. Sharp
J. M. Shaw
E. T. Lincoln
J. M. Stevens
O. H. L. Cunningham
A. B. Constanz
H. W. Johnston
I. H. Witt
H. L. Waters
This church is a charter member of Current River Association and has represented in it with only a few exceptions since the beginning. It entertained the association in 1884, 1896, 1902, 1915, 1932, and 1939. It reported a membership of 123 in 1946, and has a Sunday School and a Training Union.
NEW HOME (Supply)
The New Home Baptist Church is located about a half mile southeast of Supply. This church was organized October 18, 1903, by Elders D. A. Sharp and C. A. Fowler, with the following charter members: C. A. Fowler, Mary L. Fowler, Virginia Fowler, Dr. Charles Fowler, Tom J. Redwine, Lizzie Redwine, James Bush, and Hulda Bush. D. A. Sharp was the first pastor, and the following pastors have served this church:
C. A. Fowler
J. A. Wheatley
N. A. Brown
J. D. Looney
W. A. Cummings
H. W. Johnston
A. B. Constanz
Roger M. Baxter
L. G. Miller
O. H. L. Cunningham
Clay Roach (present pastor)
The original house was a frame structure located about one-fourth mile south of Supply near the site of the present Church of Christ, and was erected by the United Baptists about 1895. The United Baptist congregation known by the name of "Little Vine" died out, and they gave the house to the New Home church. In 1915 the site of the church was moved a little further south and the present building was erected. W. A. Cummings, then principal of the Ouachita-Maynard Academy, was serving as pastor at that time. The church reported a membership of 25 in 1907, and a membership of 59 in 1946. It reports a Sunday School enrollment of 50. It has always represented in Current River Association, and entertained the association in its annual meeting in 1914, and again in 1918. Two good preachers have come out of this church Ralph Kerley and Loren Jolly.
OAK GROVE (Attca [sic])
Oak Groe Baptst [sic] Church s [sic] located about seven miles north of Pocahontas. It was constituted in 1866 as a result of a brush arbor revival in which Col. Timothy Reeves of Missouri did the preaching. He had served as a colonel in Price's army, known as Missouri State Guards. Eld. Knox Belew's mother was converted in that revival and was a charter member of the church. Her
Maiden name was Nancy Moore. Bro. Belew is our authority for this account of that revival: Col. Reeves came by appointment to hold the meeting and found a brush arbor already erected but heard there was some opposition to a revival being held. He walked upon the stand with a six-shooter in each hand and looked the congregation over and made this announcement: "I hear that some of you oppose my coming and holding this meeting, and you have threatened to run me out. Now if you have any intention of doing this start in now before I preach." Nobody spoke a word in reply and he laid his pistols on the stand and took up his Bible and began his sermon. Nobody dared to harm him and many souls were added unto the Lord. Thus began this good old church. William Bass and J. Alpin were messengers to State Line Association in 1879. W. J. Bass was clerk, and M. M. Jackson was pastor. They reported 54 members. D. A. Pressley was pastor in 1888. Others who have served this church as pastor include E. T. Lincoln, J. C. Diceton, J. A. Allison, J. M. Stevens, Andrew O. Collier, R. A. Hudson, O. L. Justice, and H. L. Waters who is the present pastor.
This church has had three houses of worship. The first was a log building, the next was a boxed house, and the next a frame building which still served [sic] the church. Eld. Knox Belew was ordained to the ministry in 1897 by this church. State Line Association met with it in 1897, 1904, and 1913. Current River Association met with it in 1933. The membership was 79 in 1946.
PLEASANT GROVE (Buncomb)
This church is located in Clay County about three miles northeast of Palatka, one mile north and one mile east of Taylor School House, near the Missouri line. It was organized by Older R. L. Powell on, or about, September 8, 1907, with the following as charter members: Mr. and Mrs. Grant Lamb, Sarah Lamb, Ola Lamb, May Lamb, M. J. Stephens, A. J. Bickers, B. C. Smith, and others whose names we could not obtain. The Organization Council consisted of Elder A. Conner, Elder S. W. Abernathy, A. Spriggs, G. B. Lafferty, and Brother Tracy. After the organization was effected the church voted to go by the name of "Pleasant Grove." (Since then another church was constituted
East of Corning taking the same name, and it has been necessary to call this one Pleasant Grove West, and the new one Pleasant Grove East). The charge to the church was given by Elder A. Conner and the prayer was led by A. Spriggs. The church voted to represent in Current River
Association, and Elder R. L. Powell was elected first pastor. He has served as pastor most of the forty years of this church's existence, and is pator [sic] at the present time, but others have served at times. Among them were Elders W. J. Mock, J. A. Wheatley, W. T. Caldwell, J. A. Ferguson, J. C. Grider, and Ernest Gower. This church represents now with the Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Association. The present membership is 34.
FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH OF POCAHONTAS
Pocahontas became the county seat of Randolf [sic] County in 1937 [sic] , but we have no account of a Baptist church there until 1899. This first church was organized by M. D. Bowers and had five charter members as follows: Mrs. Henry Douglas, Mr. and Mrs. J. S. Anderson, Bessie Anderson, Col. Perkins, and Mrs. Kate Skinner. They worshipped in the Methodist Church house which was a white frame building located on a lot southeast of the present Methodist Church.
This organization was not permanent, but in 1900 Eld. R. C.
Medaris organized the Baptists again into a church and it has had a continuous existance [sic]. The charter members of this organization were, Mrs. Emma Carter, Mr. and Mrs. J. S. Anderson, Mr. and Mrs. J.S. Colyear, Col. Perkins, Bessie Anderson, Mr. and Mrs. Jim Johnston, Mr. and Mrs. I. W. Standiford, Mr. and Mrs. Joe Parks, Mr. and Mrs. V. G. Hinson, J. W. Presely, and perhaps others. The deed to the church site was made January, 1901, by Mr. and Mr. C. T. Shannon, the purchase price being $250.
Work began soon after this transaction on a house of worship. By April of that year the foundation was finished, and in July, 1902, new pews were installed costing the sum of $1208.50. The building committee was composed of J. S. Anderson, Joe Parks, A. J. Witt, and Ben A. Brown. This was a substantial red-brick building with stained-glass windows. It is still used by the church but has had an educational plant added. The church has plans for a new building and has in hand about $30,000 in cash for this purpose. They plan to begin building in the spring of 1948.
The following pastors have served this church through the years:
E. P. Minton
G. W. Owens
J. M. Robertson
F. C. Neely
M. D. Bowers
J. A. Allison
C. G. Elliot
W. C. Hamil
J. J. Cates (first full time pastor, salary $85 per mo.)
A. P. Elliff
J. H. Smith
L. D. Summers
Allen Hill Autry
W. R. McEwin (1922)
O. A. Greenleaf
T. R. Hammonds
F. W. Varner
W. E. Chadwick
H. E. Williams
W. Harry Hunt, who is the present pastor.
The Sunday school was begun early in the church's history; a woman's organization called "Ladies' Aid" was being organized in 1905; and a B. Y. P. U. or organized in 1907.
This church has rendered splendid service through the years, and enjoys a healthy state of growth today. Among the fruits of this church are Rev. Russel Duffer, and Miss Irene Chambers. The present membership of the church is about 550. This church affiliated with Black River Association until 1923. It entertained Current River Association in 1930.
RAVENDEN SPRINGS CHURCH
The Raenden Spring [sic] Baptist church was constituted December 2, 1910, with Elders E. T. and Andrew Lincoln leading the movement. The charter members included W. S. Mariott, Mollie Lane, W. R. Stidham, Mr. and Mrs. J. G. Haas, Mr. and Mrs. Leo James, B. L. Eaves, Mrs. J. D. Davis, Mrs. John Gregson, Ella Lane Mr. and Mrs. Harry Troxel, Mrs. John Jackson, and possibly others. The church was reorganized in a special conference held October 1, 1911. Some of the names in the above list were not found in the account of the organization but appeared in the list made up in the October 1, 1911 meeting. The minutes were not complete for those first meetings and the author has listed all the names of both accounts as charter members. Andrew J. Lincoln was the first pastor. A building committee was appointed shortly after the organization was completed consisting of John lane, W. S. Mariott, and James Davis. In September, 1912, they reported having 40 members. A house of worship was built on top of the hill on the south side of the ravine about 100 yards west of the bridge. This served the congregation until 1940, when under the leadership of the association missionary, W. O. Taylor, a new native stone structure was built on a part of the plot of ground now used by the Ravenden
Springs Baptist Encampment. This is a splendid building with a basement and four Sunday school rooms. Pastors who have served the church not already mentioned, include J. A. Allison, J. A. Wheatley, W. H. Bradford, L. G. Mil-
Ler, Taylor Stanfill, W. Enlow Hicks, Roy Butler, Floyd Chaffin, Alfred Senter, L. F. Bain, H. W. Johnston, J. W. Shields, and S. W. Wilkerson who is the present pastor. This church entertained State Line Association in 1917,l and Current River in 1928 and 1936. They reported 75 members in 1946.
SHILOH (Clay), commonly known as Richwoods
This church is located five miles west of Corning, about a quarter of a mile south of U. S. Highway 67. It is one of the oldest churches in the association from the standpoint of continuous service. Unfortunately the early records have not been preserved and there is some uncertainty about the date of its constitution. But we do know that 1858, it was received into Bethlehem Association with Elcan Crane and T. J. Hicks as messengers. The membership numbered only eight. This strongly suggests that the church was still in its infancy and a safe guess would be that it was constituted that year 1858. The next year it represented again with the membership still given as eight, and John Stayton as pastor. The postoffice was given as Cherokee Bay. It represented again in 1860 with Jackson Hicks as messenger but sent no letter. This was the last time it represented in Bethlehem Association. Doubtless the war between the States destroyed this "golden candlestick" for the date of its constitution is said by the elderly members to be 1866, and A. Conner is said to have organized it. it has had a contuous exiistance [sic] since that date.
The first house of worship was made of logs. Where it stood is now part of the Richwoods Cemetery. This old building was destroyed by fire and a boxed house was erected on about the same site. This was used for a school house and for a house of worship by Methodists, Freewills, as well as Missionary Baptists. This building burned in 1893. Eld. F. C. Neely was pastor at that time. The church used the school house for a meeting place until 1896 when another house was built. It was located a little south of the cemetery. J. B. Smith and W. T. Griffith composed the Building Committee, and three girls composed the Finance Committee; They were Enola Smith (now Mrs. Geo. Hill), Ina Murray (now Mrs. Dave Lincoln), and Dolly Park (now Mrs. Sam Smith). O. H. Park, a layman, gave the "board" to cover the house. In 1913 this building was so damaged by a storm that it was unfit for use. There followed a period of "depression" in the church's life, when there was no regular pastor, and no regular services. As a result of a revival held by J. W. Cunningham the congregation decided to build another house and by 1918 it was completed. This house was located north and east of the cemetery. Eld. Knox Belew was called as pastor and served the church several years. In 1935 under the pastoral leadership of H. W. Johnston another house of worship was erected to meet the needs of the larger congregation and growing Sunday School. This is a cobble-stone building with seating capacity of 350, and eight Sunday school rooms, and cost about $5500. The building committee was Sam Smith, Robert Mabry, and F. G. Smith.
Pastors, not already mentioned, who have served this church include the following: A. Conner, J. D. Stayton, L. W. Patrick, Gideon Townzen, W. B. Richardson, T. J. Watson (1896), J. A. Wheatley, Ed Barker, M. C. Bowers, C. A. Fowler, R. L. Lewis, S. N. Dickinson, H. W. Johnston, Bill Woodson, Osborn Justice, and Earnest G. Pavey.
This church ordained L. W. Patrick to the ministry June 8, 1879, and on February 23, 1947, it ordained its pastor, Earnest Pavey, to the minister [sic]. This church was a charter member of this association. George Gibson, William Magee, and H. D. Sheppard, were the messengers, and the church reported 36 members.
This church is located about five miles northwest of Pocahontas. According to Dalton's History of Randolph County it was organized by Elder J. R. Pratt about the year 1875, but our associational minutes for several years have given 1892 as the date. The earlier date is likely correct, because deacon L. C. Haynes, who lives now at Success, says he was baptized into the fellowship of that church in 1888. He states further that I. W. Stanford gave four acres of ground for the church and cemetery sometime back in the 1880's. Eld. M. D. Boweers was a pastor in 1888 and served this church for nearly forty years, and Eld. J. A. Allison followed him and served it for nearly the same length of time. He did the preaching in thirty-three revivals held during his long pastorate, and baptized scores of people. Oliver Richie was pastor in 1941. This church represented in Spring River Association until 1923 and since that date has represented in Current River Association. Sam Stanford and Albert Tucker were messengers to the association in 1923 when the church was received, and J. A. Allison was pastor. They reported a membership of 83. The association met with church in 1942.
UNION NO. 1 (Hitt School House) Later Success
About the year 1883 a Baptist Church was organized at Hitt School House which stood a mile northeast of the present town of Success. The name by which this church is found in the minutes is "Union No. 1" to distinguish it from another "Union" in Randolph County which later joined the Association. It represented in 1883 for the first time and reported nine members with A. Conner as pastor. It continued to report until 1896, and is said to have dissolved in 1903. Elder Conner was pastor most of the time this church existed but others who served in that capacity were T. J. Watson and Robert Carroll of Pittman. Robert Hawthorn was one of the leading members of this congregation and much credit is due him for keeping the organization alive. When it died out he, along with several others organized the Success Church. J. W. Cunningham was pastor when it disbanded.
J. W. Cunningham preached the first Baptist sermon ever preached in the town of Success in the home of his brother, Claud, in 1902. In the spring of 1904 the Baptist church was constituted with the following charter members: Robert Hawthorn, Ethel Hawthorn, C. D. Cunningham, Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Frazier, Mr. and Mrs. M. D. Miller, Jennie Stephens, and Mrs. Etta Shemwell. A two-story building was erected in 1905, with the church using the first story and a lodge using the second. This house was completely destroyed by a cyclone in 1916, and the present building was erected soon thereafter. The church bought the old Bille
Stephens Hotel and used the lumber from it in the construction of the present house. The annex was built during the pastorate of H. W. Johnston.
The first pastor was J. W. Cunningham. Other pastors not already mentioned were D. A. Sharp, Robert L. Lewis, E. T. Lincoln, R. L. Powell, D. K. Foster, Knox Belew, J. A. Wheatley, Smith Raney, L. R. Russell, Taylor Stanfill, L. G. Miller, A. B. Constanz, and James Busby. For several years this church has had half-time pastoral service, but has voted to go to full-time provided a pastor can be secured. It has a present membership of 180, a good Sunday School with an enrollment of 114, a Training Union with an enrollment of 70, and an active Women's Missionary Society. The association met with this church in 1813, 1940, and will meet there in the 1947b session. Bro. Lewis Moore was licensed to preach by this church in 1946.
UNION (Randolpt [sic])
Union No. 2, as it was designated in the early minutes, is located in the southeastern corner of Randolph County. It was received by Current River Association in 1887. The messengers were G. C. Taylor and W. Story. J. H. Holt was pastor and the membership was 19. Others who have served as pastors include T. Robinson, W. F. Bridges, J. E. Sherrill, D. M. Smith, J. H. Martin, and R. L. Powell. Elder W. F. Bridges was ordained by this church in 1891 and served it as pastor for many years. At one time the membership reached above 200. It has not represented with Current River Association since 1922. It represented with the Current River Missionary (Landmark) Association until 1937 or '38, and perhaps has ceased to function as a church. At least it did not report in the minutes of Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Association in 1946. The association met with this church in 1898, 1906, 1916, and 1921.
WITT'S CHAPEL (Maynard)
The Baptist Church of Maynard in Randolph County, was named Witt's Chapel in honor of Eld. Isaac Witt, who founded it and was its first pastor. This church was organized in 1884 or '85 out of members from Pleasant Grove Church a few miles south of Maynard, which died about 1884. The charter members were Mr. and Mrs. Elias McMurtrys, Mrs. Betty McNaff, Capt. John Maynard, Sr., Mrs. Betty Bemis, W. M. Hurley, R. E. Anderson, Mrs. E. A. Austin, and Harney Justice. A house of worship was built soon after the organization and was dedicated in 1885 or '86. This house stood until 1905 when under the pastoral leadership of Eld. J. F. Rorex it was razed and a new one-room brick veneer house was erected which still serves the congregation. Stith Maynard and Jacob Richardson were messengers from this church to State Line Association in 1888, and C. L. Cate was pastor. They reported a membership of 23. But it was represented the year before and gave Emmanuel Richardson as pastor. Others who have served as pastor of this church include M. D. Bowers, D. A. Pressley, J. A. Allison, J. A. Wheatley, E. T. Lincoln, J. W. Sconce, Wash Savage, I. J. Looney, W. A. Cummings, Paul Freeman, H. E. Peters, L. G. Miller, Roger M. Bater, P. F. Bennett, J. W. Shields, . S. Gordon, John L. Causey, and W. C. Henson of Doniphan, Mo., is serving the church at this time. This church has ordained several preachers but we regret that we were unable to learn their names. state line association met with this
Church in 1889, 1896, 1902, 1908, and 1916. Current River met with it in 1924. About 1929 this church left Current River Association and joined with the Landmark churches which had formed another association. It represents now with Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Association, and reported a membership of 36 in 1946.
CHURCHES NOW EXTINCT
The following list of churches once existed within the present bounds of Current River Association but have ceased to function. They are not listed alphabetically.
Old Salem, or
Columbia Church Site. Site of the
First Baptist Church in Arkansas.
Current River Association enjoys the honor of having within its bounds the site of the first Baptist church ever to be organized in the state of Arkansas. This church was to the northeast part of Randolph County, about ten miles north of Pocahontas, in what is now known as the Jarrett community. At the time the church was organized the community was known as Fourche a Thomas, which name was taken from the little river which flows
near by, but it soon came to be known as "Columbia" and bore that name for many years. This early settlement was on the National highway which ran from St. Louis, via Saint Genevieve, thence to the southwest, crossing Current River at what in early days was called Hix's Ferry, came on through Arkansas via Davidsonville, Batesville, and Little Rock.
The credit belongs to the late Eld. E. J. A. McKinney, editor of the Baptist Advance for many years, for working out the facts to establish the date and site of this "gleam of light in the wilderness." About the year 1930 he wrote to several libraries to find a copy of the American Quarterly Register for 1841, and found the coveted book in the library of Brown University, Providence, R.I. He was sent a typewritten copy of what is contained in there about this first church written by Dr. J. M. Peck in Vol. 14, No. 2, Nov. 1841, page 141, which is as follows:
"In 1818 a small Baptist church was constituted on Fourche A. Thomas, Lawrence County (then Missouri Territory) of twelve members. Elders, Benjamin Clark and Jesse James were ministers there."
Houck's History of Southeast Missouri tells us that Rev. J. M. Peck preached at this church, that it was called Salem, and that it joined the Bethel Association (Missouri) that year. Eld. Caleb Lindsey and his son, John Young Lindsey, are said to have preached there and assisted in the constitution of that church.
It is to be regretted that we know so little about this pioneer church. Who were its charter members? Who was its first pastor? Where did hey meet at first? When was the house constructed? When did its lights go out? The answer to these, and many other questions, which come to our mind, have been long lost in the great mass of forgotten things. However, we do know a little more about it. A log house was built and used for services until sometime in the 1850's. Mr. W. H. Jarrett who was reared in that community, and died in Little Rock a few years ago, at the age of 95, related that he remembered being in the old log house when he was a boy and that it stood about 50 feet south of the old Jarrett Store. In 1937 Association Missionary, W. O. Taylor, followed this lead and found the outline of the old foundation and a pile of stones which obviously came out of the foundation and chimney. And on that very spot he organized
another Baptist church which bears the name of Columbia-Jarrett. (The Arkansas Baptist History Commission has planned to place a marker on this site.)
But to return to the Salem Church, Douglass' History of the Missouri Baptists has this to say in point:
"Black River Association was organized in 1835 from churches which had formerly belonged to Cape Girardeau Association. * * * These churches were, Black River, Big Creek, Bear Creek, Cherokee, Columbia, and Greenville. * * * Elder McElmurry was moderator. * * * The first two meetings were with Greenville and the next with Columbia." (That would be in 1837)."
The Salem Church doubtlessly by that time had come to be known by the name of the community in which it was located. Court house records in Pocahontas show that "James Garrett was given credentials to preach Aug. 5, 1847, at Columbia United Baptist Church by William Haliburton and William Suttle."
There was a Baptist Church called "Cherokee Bay Baptist Church of Christ" somewhere near the present town of Reyno in the year 1834. Douglass' History of Missouri Baptists, page 177, states that it was one of the six churches formerly belonging to Cape Girardeau Association (Mo.), which organized Black River Association in Wayne County, Mo., in 1836. Elder Henry McElmurry was elected moderator of this new association. He seems to have held membership in the Cherokee Bay Church. One of the oldest records in the court house at Pocahontas sheds light on this. From it we learn that Henry Slavens was ordained to preach for the Cherokee Bay church described as a "United Baptist Church of Christ," December 4, 1836, by Henry McElmurry, and Sherrod Winningham, elders. (Slavens was a delegate from Randolph County to the first State Constitutional Convention at Little Rock in 1836.) We also find by Elders William Mason, and William McElmurry of the "Cherokee Bay Church of Jesus Christ,
commonly known as the United Baptists."
It is possible that this same church later took the name of Antioch, for minutes of Bethlehem Association of United Effort Baptists (later changed to Gainesville) for the year 1858, show
that Antioch Baptist Church of Cherokee Bay, Randolph County presented a letter to the association and was accepted. The messengers were Thomas Cassinger and Samuel Reed. The pastor was Peter Watson. It represented the next year with S. W. Watson and A. W. James as "delegates." The membership was 36, and the postoffice was Cherokee Bay. The Bethlehem Association met with this Antioch Church in 1860. John Stayton was elected Moderator. Peter Watson was still pastor. We can only guess were [sic] this church was located, as Cherokee Bay
was the only postoffice between Black River and Pocahontas, and much of what is now Clay County was Randolph County then. And, too, the Cherokee Bay postoffice changed sites a few times back in those early days.
Antioch Church was located about nine miles east of Dalton, and was constituted in 1873. On August 30 of that year a deed was made to the church for the property by Surridge and Fisher. In 1873 this church represented in Spring River Association which met with Liberty Church near Biggers, and the minutes state that it was organized that year and had 22 members. In 1879 it was represented in State Line Association by Joseph D. Henderson and J. Manning, with E. Richardson as pastor. J. W. Tyre was clerk and they reported 56 members. A. R. Kirkpatrick was clerk in 1888 and Isham Looney was pastor. They reported only 33 members. In 1903 J. w. Tyre was clerk again and C. A. Fowler was pastor, and it had 56 members. Others who have served as pastor of this church are I. H. Witt, J. C. Diceton, J. A. Allison, I. J. Looney and L. G. Miller. It ceased to represent when State Line Association merged with Current River, and became inactive. The old building is still standing. Bro. S. W. Looney who was moderator of State Line Association from 1910 until 1921 was a member of this church through those years.
In 1860 Bethlehem Association met with Antioch Church (Cherokee Bay), and a church called Indian Creek was received
on petitionary letter. The messengers were J. J. McGuire and Jeptha Yarborough and they reported eight members. This church was obviously somewhere near the Missouri line in the vicinity of the present town of Palatka, for there is a creek running through that country bearing that name, and too, that was the home of J. J. McGuire. But it must not have lived long for we never find any more references to it in the records. It was the fore-runner of Mount Pleasant East.
On June 17, 1871 another church was organized in that vicinity by the name of Indian Creek. Joshua Collier, J. J. McGuire, and A. Conner assisted in the organization. Among the charter members was Gideon Townzen who soon thereafter was "liberated to preach the gospel." A. Conner was elected as the first pastor, Joshua Collier was pastor in 1873, and J. J. McGuire in 1877. The church had a total of 16 members that year. In preparing the letter to Cane Creek Association in 1873 the church sent a petition to the association "asking for a division." Obviously these churches in Arkansas under the influence of A. Conner, by that time saw the need for an association in Arkansas made up of the churches then representing in Cane Creek. This church voted to dissolve in November, 1877, and the members united with Pleasant Grove. Although we have full minutes on this old church we could not find out the exact location of the place of meeting.
Oconee Church was located in Davidson Township about two and a half miles south of Dalton in Randolph County. it was organized as a result of a revival meeting held by missionary J. B. Routh (perhaps he was working under a joint program between State Line and the Arkansas Baptist State Mission Board) in the spring of 1920. This new church represented in State Line Association that fall and reported a membership of 26, twenty of whom had been received by baptism. W. H. Bradford was pastor. In 1923 L. G. Miller was reported as pastor. State Line Association met with this church in the fall of 1922 and Oconee never reported to the association again, and neither did State Line ever hold another annual session. But if this church never did any
more than ordain Taylor Stanfill and L. G. Miller to the ministry it abundantly justified its existence.
MOUNT PLEASANT (UNITED BAPTIST)
This church was in Randolph County near the town of Ingram, in what was known then as the Roach Community. It was organized in 1859 and ceased to exist about 1884. It is mentioned here because the Roaches, and some of the Looneys, who later became leaders in Baptist work in
Randolph County came out of this church. It never was missionary in spirit and the more progressive members left it to organize Antioch in 1873. the cemetery located adjacent to the site of this church known as the Roach Cemetery has become a wilderness typically marking the place of this non-missionary church.
All we know about this old church is that Isom Amos was ordained July 6, 1858 by Hopewell Church, and Issac Hobbs and R. O. Tribble composed the presbytery. This record is found in the court house in Pocahontas. It was located perhaps in the northern or western part of Randolph County as R. O. Tribble lived in Couch, Missouri.
BALM OF GILIAD
This church was located in Clay County near the town of Palatka, but that is as definite as we can be regarding the location. It represented in the association in 1896 and gave Palatka as the postoffice. J. A. Wheatley was pastor, and it had a membership of six. It must have died in infancy.
SECOND CHURCH OF CORNING
In May, 1924, a Second Baptist Church was organized in Corning by Elder R. L. Powell. It carried on a thriving Sunday School and by 1925 reported 64 members. They never owned a building, but met for a year or so in the building of the First
Baptist Church while it was pastorless. R. L. Powell was its pastor. It ceased to operate about 1928.
This church was located in Randolph County about two miles south of the bridge where U. S. Highway crosses Current River on the east side of the river. it was organized by Elder J. M. Stevens in 1922, and he served it as pastor. A total of 30 members was reported to the association that fall. It died in a few years, but the Biggers Church carries on a mission there now under the name of Little Brown.
NEW HOME NO. 2
This was a new church received into the association in 1915 with Fay Smith, clerk, and C. B. Moultbie, pastor. The postoffice was Supply. It was organized by Elders E. T. Lincoln, D. A. Sharp, and R. L. Powell. It had a membership of 20 but never reported again.
This church was located in Randolph County near Dalton. It was organized in 1910, and in 1912 was served by Elder E. T. Lincoln. It reported again the next year with J. W. Spence as pastor and that was the last time.
This church was located six miles south of Pocahontas on the west side of U. W. Highway No. 67. It was organized by Knox Belew in 1904 and was served by him until 1909. He baptized over 100 people into its fellowship 38 at one time. Elders Frank Wise and J. A. Allison also served it. It reported for the last time in 1912.
This church was located about six miles north of Pocahontas in what was known as the Brockett Community. It was organized
in 1898, and in 1903 had 31 members. Knox Belew was pastor for several years. It was dropped from the list in 1913.
This church was on Black River about six miles east of Pocahontas. It was represented for the first time in State Line Association in 1922 and reported a membership of 60. It was pastored by L. G. Miller in 1922 and 23. W. E. Laddell was pastor in 1927. It never reported again.
NEW HOPE NO. 1
This old church was in Randolph County in the Oconee Community and was sered [sic] by Knox Belew in 1900. It had two Negroes in its membership Uncle Frank and Aunt Rose Looney who were among the most faithful members of the church. It ceased operation shortly after the turn of the century.
This church was in Randolph County about eight miles south of Pocahontas. It was organized in 1912 and reported to State Line Association in 1913 showing a membership of nine. Elder M. D. Bowers was serving as its pastor and preaching for it two Sundays a month. It represented again the next year but was without a pastor and that was the last time it reported.
In 1879 a church by this name represented in State Line Association by Eld A. Foster and B. Esuridge as messengers. They reported a membership of 19. A Foster was pastor and A. B. McLain was clerk. He gave Siloam as his postoffice. The next year I. H. Witt was a messenger from this church and pastor of it.
LIBERTY (YELLOW HALL)
This church was located on the east bank of Current River about a mile north of the bridge where U. S. Highway 67 crosses
the river. It was known as Yellow Hall because of the building in which the church met. Spring River Association met there in 1873 which was the year State Line was organized in Missouri. State Line Association met with this church in 1879. It had 48 members at that time. When Current River Asiocation [sic] was organized in 1881 it was one of the six churches which constituted it. It ceased to exist about the turn of the century.
This church was organized by E. T. Lincoln in 1914 on the site of Liberty church mentioned above. It reported to the association in 1915 with 37 baptisms and 59 members. Eld. J. M. Stevens was pastor in 1917. It made its last report to the association in 1920.
This church was in Randolph County near what is known as Elm's store. It reported to State Line Association in 1879. W. H. Gully was clerk and H. C. Kirkpatric was pastor. It reported 21 members.
This church was located in Randolph County near Warm Springs, and was organized by the Pratt Family which lived in that vicinity. It was listed in the minutes of State Line for 1888 but had no messenger present. The association met with it in 1892, but the Pratt Family moved away shortly after that date and the church ceased to function.
This church was located about five miles south of Maynard in the Thorny Grove Community. A. Foster was the pastor in 1879 and they had 42 members. They had a house of worship built of logs. This church dissolved about 1885 and several of its members helped constitute Witt's Chapel. I. H. Witt was pastor in the last years. It ordained Emmanuel Richardson to preach. State Line Association met with this church in 1880.
NEW HOPE NO. 1
This church was located about one mile north of the present town of Reyno on the County line Road. It joined Current River Association in 1890 and reported T. J. Watson as pastor. This grew to be a splendid rural church with a good house of worship. O. H. L. Cunningham was pastor there once and is said to have baptized about 100 members one year. D. K. Foster also served as pastor once. It ceased to function about 1902 and some of the members helped constitute the Datto church and some joined at Reyno.
This church was in Randolph County about ten miles northwest of Pocahontas, in Eleven Points Township. State Line met with this church in 1888. D. A. Pressley was pastor and the membership was given as 72. Knox Belew was pastor of this church once. It ceased to report about 1900.
This church was located near Randolph-Lawrence county line about ten miles south of Pocahontas, and three miles west of U.W. Highway 67. It was organized in 1912 but reported for the first time in 1913. Frank Bridges was pastor at that time, and they reported a membership of 17. J. A. Wheatley was pastor in 1915, J. A. Allison in 1916, and 1917, and it never reported again.
Vernon church was located about five miles west of Maynard. It was organized in 1914 and reported to State Line Association that fall. J. A. Allison was pastor. They had 18 members. The Association met with this church in 1920. J. A. Allison was still the pastor. This was the last time it ever reported.
This church was organized in 1920 and was located about two miles northwest from Ravenden Springs. The name was
carried in the minutes of State Line Association for 1920 but no information was given on the church.
This church was in Randolph County in the vicinity of Dalton. Eld. M. M. Jackson was pastor in 1879. The membership was eight. In 1880 E. T. Lincoln was clerk and we find no further reference to it.
This church was located in the southwestern edge of Randolph County. it was organized in 1873 by seven members. Jackson at that time was a thriving village. It was recieved [sic] into Spring River Association in 1873 with J. Coffel and S. O. Howard as "delegates" and reported 22 members. It was stated in the minutes that S. O. Howard was a missionary.
This church was in Randolph County about four miles south of Pocahontas on the east side of U. S. Highway 67. It was organized in 1920 and reported to the association that fall with J. K. Smith as pastor. They reported 53 members. It died "a-borning" and never reported again.
Note: The author is not unmindful that several church have represented in both the associations which are not accounted for in this book. There are a few old churches in Randolph County that the writer heard about but he could not find sufficient data to justify mentioning them in these pages. There were a few he could not locate and he did not mention them. Then, there were a few in Sharp County and several in Missouri which represented regularly in State Line Association, and a few near the line in Missouri and some east of Black River in Clay County which were loyal members to Current River for several years, but the limits of this little book, and the limited time the write had to prepare it, make it impossible for him to give sketches on them.