History Leaves of the Methodist Tree – August 2018

History Leaves of the Methodist Tree
Compiled by Johnny Cordell
August 2018 (Continued from last month) 

   In 1852 Henninger’s Chapel was erected and named for John Henninger, who was a popular circuit rider who came to the valley in 1817, the same year that Marion County was formed.  It is quite remarkable that no Methodist Church had been built in this section before 1852, but the circuit riders were in the valley preaching somewhere.  The Methodists had a way of finding some place to deliver what they felt were important messages to the people, if not in some one’s home, or school house, then out under the expanding oaks, beeches and poplars, in God’s own temple of prayer and praise.  The “Methodism in earnest” in those days recognized few insuperable obstacles to their forward march.

   The following is a list of ministers who have served this community church from 1852 to 1884.  Although the church was destroyed by Federal troops in 1863, the community was assigned a regular pastor as part of the Jasper circuit until a new church was erected in 1884.  During this time Bible studies were conducted in private homes, and the circuit riding ministers probably met with the congregation at Liberty Church located about ½ mile south of the current East Valley Baptist Church adjacent to the old Austin Farm.  This building was also utilized for commission meetings after Sequatchie County was formed in 1857.  In 1852 Sequatchie Valley had two circuits consisting of Jasper and Pikeville.  The first year after the Civil War there was apparently only one circuit in the valley including both Jasper and Pikeville.  But since they appointed two men to the circuit, one could have had the northern part of the valley and one could have taken the southern portion, so this community could have been a part of the northern end which included Pikeville, or both ministers could have taken turns serving this community.  There is no proof of this, only speculation.  Chapel Hill became part of the Dunlap circuit in 1884. 

1852    R. N. Price 1860    Lawrence M. Renfro
1853    J. R. Long 1861    M. P. Swain (Civil War begins)
1854    J. R. Burchfield 1862    A. E. Woodward
1855-56    John Spears 1863    Wm. H. Moody (church burned)
1857    A. C. Copeland 1864    No appointment
1858   C. T. McDonald 1865    Wm. H. Moody (End of Civil War)
1859    Thomas F. Glenn 1866   F. White, and W. W. Pyott (one circuit)

Will list both circuits since Pikeville and Jasper circuit riders may have served this community at different times, however were officially assigned to the Jasper Circuit.

Pikeville Circuit Jasper Circuit
1867  W. Pyott M. L. Clendenen
1868  L. L. Carlock J. C. Delashmit
1869  J. C. Delashmit W. B. Lyda
1870  E. H.  Bogle W. P. Lyda
1871  W. L. Turner W. C. Carden & Lyda
1872  J. R. Stradley, S. T. McPherson  George T. Gray
1873  R. J. Only, J. I. Cash M. P. Swain, John R. Hixson
1874  J. I. Cash, J. R. Hixson M. P. Swain, D. H. Hickey, J. Alley
1875  John H. Parrott T. H. Handy, T. P. Darr, J. Alley
1876  J. R. Stewart G. W. Simpson, J. A. Bilkerback, R. M. Standifer
1877  J. R. Stewart W. M. Kerr, J. A. Bilkerback
1878  D. H. Carr, J. R. Stewart W. M. Kerr, R. M. Standifer, John Alley
1879  D. H. Carr J. W. Smith, R. T. Barton
1880-81  J. R. Stewart J. W. Smith, J. H. Parrott
1881-82  J. R. Stewart D. V. Price, J. H. Parrott
1882-83  W. H. Horton J. I. Cash, P. H. Fishburn
1883-84  L. K. Haynes J. I. Cash, J. H. Parrott, C. M. James

(To be continued next month)