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THE HISTORY OF MARION CO AR
CHAPTER THIRTY-ONE
County Church
Baptist Churches
By: Mrs. Benrice Johnson
Pages: 484-498

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History BookRESPECT THE COPYRIGHT: This book is still under copyright of the Marion County Historical Association and may not be used for any purpose other than your own personal research. It may not be reproduced nor placed on any web page nor used by anyone or any entity for any type of "for profit" endeveor.

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Antioch - No.1 - 1891

       (Page 484) The date of the organization of this church is given as 1891 in the minutes of the Association for 1892, when the church was received into the Association. J. B. Perkins, who served through 1893, was pastor; A. B. Johnson was church clerk; J. Erwin was messenger. The membership was 35. Membership in 1953 was 55.
       Charter members were Mr. and Mrs. Jim Erwin, Mr. and Mrs. Ed Reynolds, Mr. and Mrs. Wily Huddleston, Mr. and Mrs. Asbury Johnson, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Williams, Mr. and Mrs. John Goff, Mr. and Mrs. John (Page 485 Top) Talburt, Tom Erwin, Silas Daffron. Local leaders in the organization of the church and the first deacons were Asbury Johnson, Jim Erwin and John Talburt.
       Other pastors were J. T. Hand 1889; W. D. Jennings 1896-99; J. A. Harnison 1900-1901; G. M. Taylor 1906; B. L. Bayless 1908; J. P. Lovelace 1909-1910; H. C. Lamb 1911-1912; W. H. McCuistion 1913, 1923; G. G. Parrott 1914-1915; A. M. Crane 1916; T. D. Thatch 1919-1921; S. D. Anderson 1922; Roscoe Cooper 1925; A. M. Reed 1926, Charles Gibson 1931-1932; Claude Crigler 1933-1936 and 1939-1943; P. W. Clampitt 1936-1937; H. J. Adkins 1938; Troy Melton 1944-1945; J. F. Richardson 1946-1947; W. B. Parker three months in 1948; Darrell Ball 1949-1950; A. B. Emmerson 1950-1951; Lee Herron 1952, Emmett Pipkins 1953; D. M. Kreis 1953; S. C. Swinney 1954; J Glen Hicks 1955-1956; Troy Melton 1956-1962; Charles Hacker 1963, and R V. Carroll 1965-1968.
       Antioch Baptist Church closed its doors September 1968 and re-opened January 1971. Carl Huddleston, Lee Louis, Mr. Mathis, Jim Fowler, Ray Canary, Troy Melton, Glenn Hicks and David Schaffer filled the pulpit until Carl Baker was called as pastor in 1972. Al Miller was our minister 1972-1974 and R. V. Carroll is our minister to date, beginning 1974.
       Carl Huddleston was ordained in 1947, and Charles Hacker was ordained in 1963 to the gospel ministry.
       Pastors in early years for which no dates are available were: W. D. White, Bert Collos, C. H. Mayfield, and Bob Barnett. Among other active leaders in this church not named above are the families of H. T. Wood, F. M. Pangle, R C. Reed, V. 0. Walker, J. W. Pierce, L. C. Bunch, J. M. Goff, D. M. Lee, B. F. Denton, Calvin, Hardy and Carl Huddleston, J. H. Clark, Bert McCracken, Lucian Wood, Bill Jones, Ross Barnett, Harry Erwin, Earl Vanzandt, Leo Lundry and Hugh Parnell.
       Evangelists and other ministers who have been a big help to the church are: Ben Kelly, Tom Pool, Guy Hopper, J. W. Gibbs, John Stratton, Dick Hurst, Lee Burtsworth, 0. I. Ford, S. D. Hacker, Dale Barnett, Gary Evans, Otis Denny, Fred Barnes, Roy Dunn and T. E. Funderburk.
       The members of Antioch Church recognize the efficient work of Bro. Claude Crigler (past Associational Missionary) as the "biggest help and best friend our church ever had."

Bruno Baptist Church
by Mrs. R. W. (Ethel Angel) Elam
(Top)

       The Pleasant Hill Baptist Church was organized in 1871 in a little log school house with a huge fireplace for heat, and split logs for seats. It was located on a hill west of the little village of Bruno on Hampton Creek in Marion County.
       Early pastors were J. R. Pennington, H. L. Sasser, J. C. Cooper. Active families were Mclntire, Cash, Casey, Atkins, Fishers, and others cannot be named helped promote this little church. A few years later a school building was erected in the valley on the east side of Hampton Creek, and the place of worship was moved to this place.
       In 1883 the church reported a membership of 35; in 1888 the membership had grown to 147. This was the largest number given that year in the Association. H. L. Sasser was pastor and he served for many years.
       In the meantime, the Methodist brethren had erected a building on (Page 486 Top) the west side of Hampton Creek, and gave the Baptists the privilege of holding revivals in their building in order to accommodate the crowd attending. In 1894 H. L. Sasser held a revival at this place and a large number was saved; one was the writer at the age of 14 years.
       The church had many problems and difficulties to overcome but, with untiring efforts of a few faithful members, it survived. In 1900 John Angel a deacon and pillar of the church, donated a plot of ground and, with the help of dedicated members as to finance and labor, built the first church house the Baptists owned. Before the completion of this building in 1901, Brother Angel was called to his reward on February 20. His obituary is on record in the history of the White River Association.
       Elder Sasser resigned as pastor in February 1902 and moved to Missouri where he died. In September 1903 J. G. Walker was called as pastor; T. W. DePriest was the church clerk.
       Pastors from 1903 until 1942 were: T. L. Thompson, J. W Coker, W. D. Collins, N. F. Bradley, J. B. Rose, Ernest Rose, Lee Carson, W. H. McCuistion, W. B. O'Neal and others. T. W. DePriest served as church clerk from 1895 to 1905; A. D. Morgan served from 1905 to 1908; those serving as clerk from 1908 until 1942 were: L. W. Angel, J. F. Elam, F. M. Angel and H. L. Stanley.
       In 1941 the old building which had served the church for 40 years was torn down, and a new building, 26' x 40' was erected on the same ground. In April 1942 Elmer Cox preached the dedicatory sermon. The pastor was Claude Crigler and the church clerk was C. 0. Nanny.
       In August 1942 Allen McCurry assisted our pastor in our first revival in the new building. The results were 16 professions of faith, and 15 additions to the church. Nine adult men professed faith: namely, R. E. Keeter, Jim Hudson, Garland Ogden, Omer Gray, Carl Burleson, Carl Gann, Kelley Stonecipher, Ulis McEntire, and Alton Massey. This was a great revival!
       Brother Crigler continued as pastor until he was selected as District Missionary. Claude Nanny served as clerk for 21 years and was replaced by Jim Hudson. Brother S. W. Wilkerson was called to pastor the church in 1948 and resigned in 1952. J. F. Richardson was pastor for one year, then Roy Dunn served as pastor from 1954 to 1958. During his ministry classrooms were added to the building. Mrs. G. W. Robinson was church clerk.
       In 1959 Glen Hicks accepted a call to pastor and, under his leadership, a mission church was established at Eros. The name Pleasant Hill was changed to Bruno Baptist Church. A vestibule was added; and the aisle and sanctuary were carpeted in memory of R. W. Elam who had served 50 years as a deacon of the church. Bro. Hicks resigned in 1963. Mrs. Dee Heath served as church clerk from 1959 to 1963.
       In 1965 Otha McCracken was the pastor. During his ministry new pews were installed and the interior of the building was painted. The church celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1971. Brother McCracken served as pastor until his death in 1972. He was a dedicated pastor, loved and respected by all who knew him. Mrs. Dale Palmer served as church clerk from 1965 until the present time. David Hill became the pastor in 1972 and is still serving the church. The deacons are: Louie B. Pannel, Tommy Johnson, Howard King, and Jim Hudson. The families that keep the work going at the Eros Mission are: Lowery, Heath, Pannel, Harris, and many others.
       (Page 487 Top) This church has grown from a log cabin to a modern building with central heat and air conditioning, a kitchen, restrooms and all modern conveniences. We give God the praise. Since I have been a member of this church for 82 years, I have witnessed the birth and death of many beloved and dedicated members and at the age of 96, I have had many mountain-top and low-valley experiences but God is faithful and I am thankful.

Bull Shoals Baptist Church
by Howard King, Pastor
(Top)

       The First Baptist Church of Bull Shoals was started November 1, 1959, as a mission from the First Baptist Church of Flippin, under the leadership of pastor Howard H. King. In 1971, under the sponsorship of Calvary Baptist Church of North Little Rock, Brother Howard King returned as pastor. On September 28, 1973, the mission was constituted a church. A lovely pastor's home has been built and the church extends a friendly welcome to one and all who come to worship.

Flippin Baptist Church
by Glen H Hicks
(Top)

       In the outset let us give credit to Dr. H. D. Morton for the bulk of the material in this report. The years 1883-1951 are taken from his book, A History of White River Baptist Association of Arkansas
       Flippin - Rehoboth - 1875-1976 - Marion County. The earliest reference to Rehoboth church in available minutes was in 1883 as follows: "Rehoboth church not represented." Minutes for 1884 give J. H. Parmer as pastor; F. Williams as messenger; membership 13. Report to Association in 1891 gives A. Johnson as pastor, P. D. Beavers as clerk, John Burch as messenger and a membership of 69. Minutes for 1894 give date of organization as 1885. However, from the reference above from minutes of 1883, we must conclude the church was organized and a member of the Association as early as 1882 or earlier. The late Brother E. B. Wood said that the church was organized about 1875 under the leadership of Elder Stephenson who lived near Marshall, Searcy County, and preached at the home of John M. Hurst, some two miles south of Flippin where the church was organized and worship was held for about two years. Later a school house was built and the congregation used this building for several years. About 1893 the church, known from organization by the name of Rehoboth, moved its meeting place to schoolhouse No. 1, about two miles east of Flippin. After the railroad came in 1903, a union church building was erected at Flippin and used by the Baptists and two other denominations existing at that time. The Baptists erected a frame building about 1906, according to Brother Wood.
       Minutes of 1895 report a charge was brought against the pastor, J. H. Parmer, for baptizing candidates for baptism into the membership of the Methodist church because the Methodist pastor was absent from a previously announced baptizing where both Baptist and Methodist pastors were to administer the ordinance of baptism. A committee was appointed by the church and the pastor and they asked Brother Parmer to acknowledge his wrong and to ask for forgiveness. Brother J. H. Marler of Pilgrim's Rest, the oldest preacher in the Association, says he was a member of the committee that visited the Rehoboth Church and that when the church and pastor met with the committee the pastor replied to the request of the committee as follows: "I will never acknowledge I have done wrong." The church took (Page 488 Top) no action at the time. However, in the minutes of 1896 we find the following: "Report of the committee appointed by the last Association to investigate the supposed trouble in the Rehoboth church was made and is as follows: 'We are credibly informed by the brethren of Rehoboth Church that reconciliation is made in said church. Elders W. A. Collis and W. D. White." Brother Marler states he had nothing to do with and knew nothing of this report. As his name does not appear in the 1896 minutes on any committee, or otherwise, it is believed he was not present.
       Other pastors of the early organization were J. B. Perkins - 1889; C. H. Mayfield - 1890; J. T. Hand - 1892; W. D. Jennings - 1894; J. A. Harrelson - 1896-1897; J. H. Marler - 1898, 1902. The membership in 1902 was 30. After this date the only reference to a Baptist Church at Flippin until 1945 was in the minutes of 1922. The minutes read: "At this time Rev. S. D. Anderson, pastor at Flippin, was given a few minutes to represent the Arkansas Baptist." The late Brother Eugene Horton of Lone Rock suggested that the earlier Rehoboth church ceased to function and that later a church was organized at Flippin under the same name and including some members of the original Rehoboth church. So, according to Bro. Horton, there were two distinct organizations known by the same name.
       For many years there was no active organized Baptist work at Flippin. Much credit for renewed interest is due to Mrs. Clyde Johnson, who did door-to-door visitation which led to the starting of a Baptist Sunday School with 68 present the first Sunday. With the cooperation of Bro. Compere - pastor at Cotter, Bro. Crigler - the Associational Missionary, and the State Baptist workers, a new church was organized in 1945 with 27 members-all of whom have cooperated in developing a strong church. This new organization has made unusual growth in membership. In 1948 the new membership by baptism was 54; the total membership was 128. In 1950 the church received by baptism - 60; in 1952 - 30; the total membership was 232 which made Flippin Church the third in membership in the association. The membership reached 251 in 1953. This made Flippin the second largest church in membership.
       Pastors since 1945 are: W. B. O'Neal - 1946; E. M. Kreis - January 1, 1947 until December 31, 1948; S. Wilkerson-July 1,1949 until September 1, 1949; Byron King - September 1, 1949 until June 17, 1951; Albert Gaston 1951-1954. At that time P. 0. Harrington became pastor and stayed until 1958 or 1959. The 1959 minutes are missing and we don't know the exact date, but the 1960 minutes show Howard King as pastor. In 1962 S. D. Hacker was called. He served until 1964. Bro. Hacker became the Associational Missionary and the church called Bro. Howard King for the second time. In 1965, when the present sancutary was completed-featuring high ceiling, open beams and a seating capacity of 200-Bro. King continued to serve until June 1971. In July the Church called Glen Hicks who presently serves as pastor. We believe this church has an opportunity for ministry until the Lord returns.

New Hope Baptist Church
(Top)

       The New Hope Baptist Church is located four miles south of Yellville and was organized in 1881. The charter members were: J. H. and Elvira (Page 489 Top) James, Jim Nanney, John Homer, Mrs. Pat Carson, Mrs. Sam Whitson and Mrs. Sis Cleghorn. The first pastor was Henry Sasser, who served seven years and for more than one period, including years 1891-1897. Other pastors were: C. H. Mayfield in 1890; J. P. Lovelace; A. M. Crane; A. M. Reed; J. H. Marler-1902; J. G. Walker 1903-1905; G. M. Taylor-1906; J. C. Cooper-1907; H. C. Lamb 1908-1911; R. L. Carson 1912-1914; W. H. McCuistion 1915-1916, 1918, 1929-1930, 1944; Fred Ward-1917; W. B. O'Neal-1919; W. L. Mumcy-1921; J. J. Ivey-1922; M. C. Clampitt-1938; H. R. Messick-1943; Carl Huddleston-1948; Lloyd Perry-1949; S. W. Wilkerson-1950-1951; Ben Kelly-1952-1953; Dick Hurst-1954.
       The location of the church building has been changed twice and is now located on Highway 14 about 4 miles south of Yellvile. The land was donated by Virgil Ott.
       New Hope has sent out two strong and useful ministers-Rupert Nanney, a successful pastor in Oklahoma City for many years and is now a pastor in Texas, and Abe James, pastor at Lamesa, Texas in 1953. Among other active leaden in this church who are not named above are the families of Garland, J. E., Joel, and Alex James, W. P. Cantrell, J. G. Dillahunty, Smith Matlock, R. D. and W. H. Reeter, J. L. Williams, G. W. and H. C. Callahan, R. R, D. R. and Henry Camp, H. L and Walter Fireston, R. Jenkins, Elnora Phillips, J. A. Pasco, Tinnie Watts, H. C Lamb, Ewing Cheek, W. F. Nanney, L.G. Clem, Mrs. Virgil Ott, W. S. T. Janes, Mrs. C. W. Pyle, Buck Harris, Charlene Stephenson, and G. H. Horner. The membership in 1953 was 129. This information was copied from A History of White River Baptist Association of Arkansas 1840-1954 by H. D. Morton.
       Later pastors have been: Roy Dunn, 1960-1961; Herbert Blanton, 1962; Raymond Edwards, 1964-1965; Calvin Henderson, 1965; Coy Womack, 1966; Dick Hunt, 1966-1967; Lee Bowers, 1968-1976; Richard Melton is the present pastor. Raymond Edwards, Calvin Henderson and Randy Shipman were ordained to the ministry by this church.
       In the past ten years (1966-1976) this rural church has made much progress under the pastoral leadership of Bro. Lee Bowers and the dedicated membership. It is now considered one of the stronger rural churches of White River Baptist Association.
       In 1975 New Hope Church sent the following report to the Annual Association:
       Resident Membership - 98
       Non-resident members - 87
       Total Membership - 185
       Sunday School Enrollment - 58
       Yearly offerings - $5,716.00
       Gave to Missions - 998.00

Peel Missionary Baptist Church
by Burl Risley (from memory)
(Top)

       The Peel Baptist Church was organized in 1907 and a building program started. It was a community effort and a joint building with the Odd Fellows Lodge constructing the upper story. Most of the families contributed labor and finances. Those that can be remembered are the families of: Yocham, (Page 490 Top) Hudson, White, Evans, Parker, Weaver, Treadway, Risley, Smith, Hensley (donated the land), Farmer, Baker (the main carpenter), Jones, Milum, Fee; the early leaders were: Farmer, Weaver, Fisher, Risley, Hudson, Parker and Baker (the carpenter) who was the first pastor
       Since Baptists took the leading roll and, no doubt, furnished most of the finances, it became known as the Baptist Church of Peel. This church was associated with the Crooked Creek Association of Boone County and the Southern Baptist Convention. Pastors were: Bro. Joshua Baker; R. W. Baley who led in the organization and was pastor when the church reached its peak in 1915; A. E. Farmer; J. H. Purdom; L. R. Goodson; J. K Aickele; Bill Schultz; J. H. Horton; and Bro. Deatherage. Two members of this church have become preachers-Ed Farmer and Bernard Risley, (At one time this church withdrew from the Southern Baptist Convention over the controversy of the 75 Million Dollar Campaign and became affiliated with a Landmark Baptist Association.) The membership kept decreasing and when Bro. and Mrs. Joe Benton moved to Yellville the church became inactive, except for an occasional revival meeting. Bro. Dale Barnett, Associational Missionary for White River Baptist Association, and Bro. Otha McCracken held a revival in September 1960. This effort resulted in several young people being saved. The Sunday School was organized September 25, 1960, with 46 present. For the first few months services were conducted each Sunday afternoon. Some of the leading families at this time were: Jess Weaver, Nora Risley, George Risley, John Hudson, Nora Evans, Mrs. Betty Rose and some whom I do not personally know.
       In October 1961 under the leadership of Troy Melton, (who was pastor) the church became affiliated with White River Baptist Association and the following was copied from the minutes of 1961:
       "The Peel Baptist Church respectfully petitions you for membership in the White River Baptist Association. Our church was duly organized in 1907 by some leading pioneer Missionary Baptist preachers in this area-Rev. R. W. Raley and Rev. Joshua Baker. The church, at that time, adopted the Church Covenant and Articles of Faith as found in Pendleton's Church Manual. Our church voted in conference on September 24, 1961, to petition for membership. We invite your committee to investigate the regularity of our organization. Our letter reflecting the work done by our church this Associational year accompanies this request.
          Peel Baptist Church
          Troy Melton, Pastor
          Mrs. Vera Richey, Clerk."
       The letter reported 30 resident members, 10 by baptism, three by transfer of membership, Sunday School enrollment 52 with an average attendance of 28. Total gifts for all purposes were $492.00.
       Pastors from 1961 to date are: Troy Melton - 1961; Roy Dunn - 1962; Otha McCracken - 1963; Don Mulford 1965-1967; Kenneth Blackford - 1969; Wilbur DePreist 1970-1973; William Cook - 1974-1976.
       The church acquired the property where it presently is located in March 1973 and became known as the First Baptist Church of Peel. The property now belongs to White River Baptist Association and is used for an Associational Youth Camp.
       (Page 491 Top) This history, prepared from memory, was given by Burl Risley, son of 0. L. and Nancy Ledhetter Risley. He was born on October 27, 1897, at Peel; he was "born in Christ" August 1915 in a meeting conducted by R. W. Raley when 15 souls were saved-four of whom were his brothers and sisters- Ross, Troy, Mae and Minta. Burl moved to the Yellville Baptist Church in January 1921 and has been active in the work here until the present time.

Pyatt Baptist Church
by Jim Sullivan
(Top)

       The Baptist Church of Pyatt (Landmark Missionary Baptist) was organized in May 1907. The 146 members met at New Prospect or Sugar Orchard. The name of this church was New Prospect #1. The Pyatt Branch was New Prospect #2 or Landmark Missionary Baptist Church and was organized in 1940. This group started with 29 members and met in the Pyatt Community Building until 1961. (This information was given by Carter and Clara Bright, long-time members.)
       Bro. Dale Barnett, while he was Associational Missionary in 1961, tells us that he conducted a daily Vacation Bible School and revival meeting in the community building with the help of 3 summer missionaries, Twenty people were saved and eight of them were baptized the following Sunday morning of the revival. Bro. Barnett and Bro. Dick Hurst preached quite often during the next few months and this was the beginning of the Southern Baptist work in Pyatt. According to the records, the church, called in conference by Bro. Barnett and Bro. Hurst in July 1961, discussed the organization of a new Southern Baptist Church and voted unanimously to grant a transfer of membership from New Prospect #2 into the new Southern Baptist Church for those desiring to join. At this time, the name was changed to Pyatt Baptist Church.
       Some history from the church records tell us that before the church was established, a Landmark Baptist Church was holding services in the community building. Bro. Dick Hurst was pastor in 1960 and there were nine additions to the church: namely, Juanita McCaleb, Steve McCaleb, Pamela McCaleb, Boris Miller, Neta Henry, Donnie Henry, Berry Ann Melton, Louis Melton and Ruby Akins. Mrs. Akins joined by letter; the others were by baptism.
       In 1961 the Landmark Baptist Church held a revival and 25 members were added to the church by baptism-Johnnie Mae Melton, Johnny Melton, Billie Mae Melton, JimSullivan, Bernice Sullivan, Sara Lou Sullivan, Carl Allen, Mary Sue Allen, Connie Lou Allen, Claude Melton, Ruth Mellon, Evelyn Stanley, Lois Ann Stanley, James Stanley, L. D. Milum, Wakely Milum, 0. D. Stonecipher, Wilma Stonecipher, L. D. Allen, Gordon Stanley, Billy Akins, Berry Melton, Mrs. Berry Melton, Mary Ann Melton and Tommy Melton.
       On August 6, 1961, the Pyatt Baptist Church was organized. A Council was formed by the following: John Finn, Troy Melton, Shaw Griffin, Glen Hicks, C. E. McDonald, Otha McCracken, Howard King, Roy Dunn, Dale Barnett, Harold Elmore, E. B. Risley, J. C. White, Clifton R. Morris, Waldon Heath, Ralph Hawkins, Bill J. Hodges, L. G. Clem, Miles Lonon, Earl Vanzandt, Dutch Raugh, Roland Coplen, E. G. Gregery and Everett Wheeler. Bro. Finn served as Moderator until Bro. Barnett was elected Moderator.
       (Page 492 Top) The Council unanimously voted to recognize this Church as a regularly constituted Baptist Church and recommended it to our sister churches and to the White River Baptist Association. Bro. Dick Hurst was called at this date as pastor and there were 49 charter members. These were: L D. Allen, Gayle Allen, Carl Allen, Maxine Allen, Mary Sue Allen, Connie Lue Allen, Billy Akins, Ruby Akins, Carter Bright, Clara Bright, Earl Burns, Nancy Burns, Sylvester Cheek, Verna Cheek, Anita Henry, Dnnie Henry, Claude Melton, Ruth Melton, Johnny W. Melton, Louis Melton, Johnnie Mae Melton, Billie Mae Melton, Betty Ann Melton, Berry Melton, Johnnie Faye Melton, Mary Ann Melton, Tommie Melton, L. D. Milum, Wakely Milum, Doris Miller, Linda Melton, Euna Melton, Iva Patton, Gordon Stanley, Evelyn Stanley, James Stanley, Lois Ann Stanley, 0. D. Stonecipher, Wilma Stonecipher, Jim Sullivan, Bernice Sullivan, Sara Lou Sullivan, Ella Mae Tilton, Mary Chaney, J. H. (Dick) Hurst, Una Tilley, Bertha Casey, Pam McCaleb and Bobby Lee Tilley.
       Bro. Hurst was pastor from August 1961 until August 1962. Bro. Carl Huddleston took the pastorate from 1962 until 1964, during the erecting of the church building. Bro. Leon Burlsworth served as pastor from November 1964 until May 1965; Bro. Carl Huddleston was re-called and served until August 1968. Bro. Bert Willingham served from March 1969 until May 1971; Bro. James McBee from 1971 to date.
       On September 24, 1961, a Building Committee was elected: namely, Carl Allen, L. D. Allen, Johnnie Melton, Sylvester Cheek, and Jim Sullivan. On December 3, 1962, the church voted to purchase land from Berry and Johnnie Faye Melton, work was begun on the building in the spring of 1963, and services were held in this new building in November1963.
       The Pyatt Baptist Church, as of October 1, 1972, had a total of 95 members, 79 resident and 16 non-resident members. Worship services are held regularly in a new, debt-free building that is fully equipped and furnished. In 1975 the report to the White River Baptist Association was as follows:
       Total membership - 104
       Total receipts for year - $11,595.00

       Value of Church property - $25,000.00

Pleasant Grove No. 1 - Rea Valley Baptist Church
(Top)

       "The Pleasant Grove No. 1 - Rea Valley - 1882 - Marion County, was received into the Association in 1883 with C. H. Mayfield pastor; B. F. Hand clerk; T. M. Rea, A. L. Blythe, E. F. Hand and G. H. Ballard messengers. Received by baptism the first year 9, total membership 29. In 1892 this church, organized as Pleasant Grove, became known as Pleasant Grove No.1, after a church by the same name was organized in Baxter County. This later church became known as Pleasant Grove No. 2. In recent years the original church has been known as Rea Valley. C. H. Mayfield continued as pastor through 1892 and probably later. Other pastors were: J. H. Parmer -1889; H. Sasser 1894-1897; W. D. Jennings 1898 (at which time membership was 81); C. H. Mayfield - 1899; H. H. Hilton 1900-1901; J. G. Walker - 1902; W. J. Barnett 1908-1910; W. H. McCuistion 1913-1918. In addition to families named above as messengers or officers, who have been active in this church, (Page 493 Top) are families of Wm. Parnell, John Bench, J. F. Rea, McMannes, and Toulson. Minutes for 1919 give the latest available report to the Association from this church which, at about that time, became inactive and remained so for 20 years or more, finally becoming a mission of the Flippin church in 1950 or 1951." (This information was copied from Associational minutes.)
       In 1959 Dale Barnett, Associational Missionary, held a two-week revival and eight people accepted Christ as Savior. The First Baptist Church of Flippin adopted the Rea Valley church as a mission. Those sent to carry on the work were: Howard King, pastor; Mr. and Mrs. Albert Reed, Margaret Reed, Sharon Rea, Mrs. Howard Rea, Mrs. Baker, Mr. and Mrs. Bill Joe Hodges and all of these served until 1960. From 1960 until 1964 the workers were: Howard King, pastor; Mr. and Mrs. Clifton Sanders, Mr. and Mrs. Howard Rea, Mrs. Otis Humphrey, Mrs. Lloyd Baker and Mrs. Faye Martin. Among those who served as pastors were: R. V. Carroll, Dick Hurst, S. D. Hacker, J. H. James, Troy Melton, Mike McCoy, Coy Womack, and Lee Bowers.
       In 1967 under the leadership of Lee Lewis, a building fund was set up and Mr. and Mrs. Sam Martin donated land for the church. In 1971 J. H. James was called as pastor and a building program was begun. The building committee consisted of Howard Rea, Ray Rorie and Marilyn McGuire. The first services in the new building were held in October 1972. On October 8, 1972, the Rea Valley Mission became again the Rea Valley Church.

Summitt Baptist Church
(Top)

       The original church building of the Missionary Baptist Church of North Yellville and later known as the Summit Baptist Church was built in 1906.
       The following is the story of the Summit Church as told to Bro. Dale Barnett in the fall of 1974 by Mrs. Esther Wilson, Mrs. Grace Allen, Mrs. Sallie Burleson and Mrs. Mary Gray. All four of these ladies grew up around Summit and were small children when the building was erected in 1906. Mrs. Esther Wilson believes that she is in the picture of the "laying of the cornerstone." The home to the right in the background of the picture is where she grew up and still lives. The house in the middle of the picture is the Mrs. Grace McVey home.
       The original church house was built jointly by four denominations: The Missionary Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, and the Christian Church. Even though other denominational groups sometimes used the building, it was built and supported by these four groups. They cooperated with each other by having a Union Sunday School and each of the four denominations had one preaching service each month.
       Mr. J. W. Craig seems to have been one of the leading laymen in the Baptist group. It is said that he moved to Yellville to work on the railroad and was later employed as the depot agent. The records of the First Baptist Church of Yellville show that he and his wife joined there by transfer of letter January 11, 1905. He evidently moved his membership along with others at that time to form the Missionary Baptist Church of North Yellville. It is believed that Mr. Craig raised most of the money for the new building. This is probably why the title was made to the Missionary Baptist Church.
       (Page 494 Top) Mr. J.B. Rowden, father of Mrs. Esther Wilson, Mrs. Helen Rea and Mrs. Mabel Richey, seems to have been one of the leading laymen in the Methodist group that helped to build the original building. His sons, Chester and Orville, hauled the lumber by wagon and team from near Kingdon Springs north of Summit.
       Other families known to have helped in the early years were: Mr. and Mrs. Robert Richardson, parents of Mrs. Grace Allen; Mr. and Mrs. Tom Williams, parents of Mrs. Sallie Burleson; Mr. and Mrs. J. M. Keeter, grandparents of Mary Alice Elam; Mr. and Mrs. Clayton Richardson, parents of Mrs. Mary Gray; Mr. D. F. Richardson, Miss Rebecca Richardson, and Mr. and Mrs. Was Reed. Others who helped teach and support the work as the years went by were: W. J. Patterson family, Mrs. Grace McVey and the Bryan Wilsons.
       The original church house has been shared from the beginning for many different activities; such as, public school, city council meetings, Summit Voting Precinct, etc.
       Some of the Baptists ministers were: Lovelace, Bayless, Reed, Crane, J. T. White, J. W. Sullivan, W. R. Jones, W. B. O'Neal and J. F. Richardson. Some of the Christian Church ministers were: Joe Bryant and Bro. Chase. Some of the Methodist ministers were: Tom Seay, Tom Wilson, Bro. Smith, Johnny Racey, Bro. McKisson, J. W. Black, Ward Tolliver, I. L. Claud, Bro. Jett, Bro. Lamb, and Bro. Womack.
       In the summer of 1954 Brother John Stratton, pastor of the First Baptist Church in Yellville, held services each Sunday afternoon. Because of the condition of this building and the lack of interest, services were discontinued. A short time later cottage prayer meetings were conducted by Frank Still, Sr., who was a member of the Yellville Baptist Church. These meetings were held in the home of W. J. Patterson, Jeff and Ruby for a period of time, resulting in a few conversions. By the summer of 1956 some repairs and clean-up work had been done on the building and grounds by Frank Still, Sr., Jeff Patterson and others. Most of the financial support came from Mrs. Sallie Burleson. Sunday School and regular preaching services were started by Bro. Curtis Bryant, pastor of Yellville Baptist Church. Frank Still, Sr., continued to work in the mission until forced to retire because of failing health. This work continued with the cooperation of pastors and workers from the Yellville Baptist Church.
       The pastors were: John Stratton, Curtis Bryant, Dale Barnett and Delbert Garrett. Some who assisted in the mission from 1955-1964 were: Frank Still, Sr., Clyde Still, Mr. and Mrs. Lester Jefferson and Darlene, Mrs. Opal Bell, Mr. and Mrs. Carl Walker and Brenda, Mr. and Mrs. Joe Edgmon and Joe, Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Paul McVey and Virgil Reading.
       In January 1961 Brother Roy Dunn was called as the Summit Mission Pastor by Yellville Baptist Church, the mother church. In February 1964 the mission was constituted into a church. During this three-year period, the Sunday School attendance increased from 16 to a record high of 85. A Training Union was organized with the weekly attendance near 35. There had been 40 additions to the church, 24 by baptism. Extensive repairs were made on the building-partitioning of seven classrooms, hardwood floors laid in the auditorium-and the mission became a church, calling Bro. Dunn as pastor, and electing the church's first officers; namely, Mrs. Euga (Page 495 Top) Gregory as clerk, Jess Morgan as Treasurer, Melvin Coleman as Sunday School Superintendent and Curtis Reed as Training Union Director.
       The charter members of the new church in 1964 were: Pastor and Mrs. Roy Dunn, Mr. and Mrs. Jess Morgan, Ruby Patterson, Agnes Lukas, Emma Henderson, Mr. and Mrs. David Cagle, Mary Noe, Ruth Johnson, Bryan Rea, Irene Frost, Gwen and Brenda Wilkerson, George Lee Stice, Nova Gilliland, Mr. and Mrs. Dewey Gregory, Dwayne, Madelyn, Margaret, and Marilyn Gregory, Mr. and Mrs. Curtis Reed, Pamela Reed and Curtis Reed, Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Coleman, Robert, Connie, Jerry Coleman, Larry Callahan, Dorothy Shaver, Pam Moody and Azaline Carter.
       Because of failing health, Bro. Dunn resigned as pastor in October 1966 and served as a supply preacher in the White River Baptist Association until August 1969 when he returned to Summit as pastor on a restricted basis and served until October 1972. During these three years the building was connected to city water, restrooms were installed, old wooden windows were replaced with aluminum storm windows and the outside of the building and the metal roof were painted.
       In summarizing the history of this church, Dale Barnett made these statements in 1974: "My family and I have lived near Summit and I have worked with the church as pastor, Associational Missionary and Rural State Missionary since 1957. In studying the history I have called this summary "The church that would not die." If the old church building could talk, she could tell some interesting stories about the rumble of mule teams, the whistle of freight trains, the jingling of cow bells, and the congregation arriving on horseback, in wagons and buggies and on foot.
       For brief periods, because of discouragement, the old church sadly admitted defeat and closed the doors to regular Sunday worship but a few faithful Christians always hoped and prayed until God sent a leader to ring the old church bell and again preach the Word. Evidently, the Baptist group admitted defeat in the late 1940's or 1950 after the Methodist group consolidated with the Yellville Methodist Church. The work in Summit was neglected. In 1954 John Stratton and Uncle Frank Still revived the work for a few months. In 1956 a Southern Baptist Mission was established by Yellville Baptist Church and carried on until it became a church in 1964. From 1964 to 1973 the church functioned as a cooperating Southern Baptist Church. In 1973 the group almost admitted defeat again. A number of families had moved away and the group became discouraged. They had only one Sunday School class with less than 10 in regular attendance and were $240 in debt. The church, according to the minutes, had counseled numerous times with the Associational Missionary about discontinuing the church or possibly becoming a mission from some other church.
       In 1973 I was asked to direct the work at Summit. My health had improved after total disability retirement in 1969. Since I had worked for 20 years with mission-minded churches, I felt free to ask them for financial help. Funds became available and we were able to redecorate the original building, buy a new piano, song books and properly equip the Sunday School classrooms. For a total of $16,000 we have built a much-needed educational building and fellowship hail. Since 1973 sixty people have been saved and baptized into the fellowship of the Summit Church. In 1975 the annual report to the White River Baptist Association showed the following:
(Page 496 Top)        Total Membership 114
       Sunday School Enrollment 128
       Church Training Enrollment 49
       Total Offerings for the year $13,890.00
       Value of Church Property $35,000.00

Yellville Baptist Church
History provided by Fern Angel Tipton,
daughter of Thomas and Donna Angel of Yellville
(Top)

       Three dates for the organization of Baptist Churches in Yellville before 1913 are given in H. D. Morton's History of White River Association. The first is 1844. Dr. Morton quotes from Roger's History of Arkansas Baptist: "A Baptist Church was organized at Yellville in 1844 by Elders W. M. Wallace and P. S. G. Watson. Elder Watson became the first pastor. Records are not available to indicate how long this old organization functioned."
       From the same source Dr. Morton records; in the minutes for 1900, is the following: "Call for petitionary letters. A letter was presented by the First Baptist Church of Yellville. The letter was received and accepted and messengers seated." Again in 1910, Dr. Morton records that minutes show that Yellville is represented at the Associational meeting by four members and gives the date of organization as 1910.
       On April 26, 1913, a Baptist Church was organized in Yeliville. This is the same church that is today called the First Baptist Church. Mrs. T. G. Angel, in a history she started before her death in 1971, states: "Twenty-one excited Baptists came that appointed day asking that their names he written on the charter member roster of the new church. These names as they appear in the minutes of that first meeting are as follows: J. L. McCarty, Wm. Clem, W. R. Jones, A. M. Reed, R. L Carson, Leslie Clem, T. G. Angel, G. W. Callahan, L. W. Angel, Sisters M. J. Callahan, Etta Canon, Kate Hamlet, Tinnie Doshier, Abbie and Kate McCarty, Emma Glass, Lizzie Clem, Myrtle Clem, Martha Smith, Donnie Angel and Alice Angel." During the meeting Bro. and Sister Tom Clem united with the church by letter. At the same meeting J. P. Lovelace was voted the first pastor, Wm. Clem first deacon, L. W. Angel the first clerk, and R. L Carson and A. M. Reed were recognized as ministers of the gospel. T. G. and L W. Angel, W. R. Jones, G. W. Callahan, and J. L. McCarty were appointed as a building committee to solicit subscriptions for a church house. J. H. Thompson, A. W. Estes, and J. L. McCarty gave the lots on which to build the church. At the dedication service of the church in November 1913, W. H. Bryant and T. G. Angel were ordained as deacons. The letter to the White River Baptist Association shows in 1914 a membership of 31, Sunday School enrollment 35, pastor's salary $125 and the cost of church building as $1700. Sometime soon after the above report was made, the church was left pastorless and it was an experience which was repeated far too often in the long struggle for existence during the next forty years.
       The darkest period of Yellville Baptist Church history came between the years of 1926-1945. It had no pastor except for very short periods of time, mostly ministerial students from Mtn. Home Baptist College. Nevertheless, the Sunday School went on, except for a short time; so did the Training Union and the missionary organizations.
       (Page 497 Top) From the History of the White River Baptist Association by H. D. Morton, Claude Crigler, Associational Missionary, said, "During the dark days from 1935-1945 when most everyone else gave up, Bro. E. B. Risley and L. G. Clem, with Mrs. T. G. Angel, kept carrying on."
       It was not until November 1934 that the church was able to have a regular pastor, Rev. E. F. Cox. The need for more deacons resulted in the ordination of E. B. Risley, Leslie Clem, and W. E. Willbanks on December 20, 1934. The annual report for 1935 gave the members as 62, pastor's salary $150, church expenses $143.20, and Co-operative Program $18.
       The minutes show nothing of importance happening during the next few years until 1950 when L. A. Perry came as pastor. In May 1950 a revival, held by Bro. R. A. Hill, resulted in 25 new members. According to minutes 19 were by baptism and 6 by letter. Through the 1950's the church grew steadily. The report for 1950 gave a membership of 58, 1951 membership of 108, 1952 a total of 186, in 1953 the membership was 218.
       August 10, 1952, a new sanctuary was dedicated. The old part of the church was divided into classrooms. Both parts were rocked with native red marble and a large part of the work was done by volunteer help.
       In September 1955 the property north of the church was purchased from Margaret Hutchinson for a parsonage, later used as classrooms. Then the property just north of that on Broadway was bought from Mac Phillips for a pastorium. Three lots to the west were also bought and have since been blacktopped for parking.
       In March 1955 a new baptistry was installed in the sanctuary. In June 1956 the Summit Mission was organized. Minutes for that year lists B. F. Stills as Superintendent of the mission. In March 1958 a mission was established at Tomahawk with Sunday School in the morning and church in the afternoon. Burl Risley was the Superintendent of the school. Bro. Dale Barnett was pastor of the church at this time. Both of these missions have since become strong churches.
       The latest addition is the new educational building which was dedicated in 1973. Bro. Edward Powers was pastor during the building program and the church voted to call this building the "Angel Fellowship Hall".
       Pastors of the church include: J. P. Lovelace 1912-1914; A. M. Craine 1915-1916; H. F. Vermillion 1917; A. A. Dulaney 1918; W. B. O'Neal 1919-1920; W. L. Muncy 1920; D. M. Carter 1921-1922; L. H. Davis 1923; M. D. King 1924-1925; W. K. Wharton 1929; Elmer Cox 1934; Earnest Cox 1935; P. W. Clampitt 1937-1938; Lehman Webb 1941; W. B. O'Neal; Oakley Long 1948-1949; L. A. Perry 1949-1950; Ben Kelly 1950-1954; John Stratton 1954-1955; Curtis Bryant 1955-1956; Dale Barnett 1957-1959; Delbert Garrett 1959-1962; Dale Barnett 1963-1964; Paul Lewis 1965-1966; Edward Powers 1966-1972; Dennis James, interim 1972; John Edwards 1973-1974; R. M. Blackwood 1974-1976; interim, Carl White 1976.
       The annual church letter to the White River Baptist Association in 1975 lists the membership as 377, Sunday School 193, and the value of church property as $115,000: The deacons for 1975 were Jarrel Nanney, John Angel, W. W. Miller, Earl Wood, George Stice, Faye Jefferson, Lester Jefferson, and Dutch Raugh.
       With the spiritual momentum and increased membership gained in recent years, this church is taking a large place in the religious life of the rapidly developing Twin Lakes area.

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