Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Children's Day At Mt. Zion

July 17, 1913 - Children's Day at Mt. Zion.

Sunday morning at an early hour wagons, buggies, horseback and footbackers began to arrive till several hundred people had gathered, then came the auto with R. Kemp as driver with some of Marion's best citizens as passengers.

At 9:30 the house was called to order by the pasator Rev. J. A. Wheeler.  A song by the choir.

The program was then taken up for the children, it was very interesting.  

At 12:15 in the beautiful grove such as surrounds a country church, dinner was spread. Some wondered how this multitude could be fed, it was like the five loaves and fishes, there was plenty of as fine dinner as the writer ever saw, and everybody seemed to enjoy it.  

During all this time Mr. E. L. Nunn one of the building committee for our new church, had his book and pencil at work with the result of something over $300 subscribed.

At 1:30 out in the grove we prepared another program.  Bro. John A. Moore was called for, Bro. John responded with one complaint he couldn't talk - Well Paul, couldn't talk but the Lord loosened his tongue.  John's tongue got loose and he gave us a good talk.

There were several who made up the program that have already been mentioned.  Some of those who made up the afternoon program are as follows:  Bro. Gordon who used no direct subject but made us a fine talk, Ed Stone who gave the children a splendid talk.

Bro. Jim Pickens advocating a standard of moral and spiritual life and next was Thomas Enoch with a good talk.

The program was closed by Sister Duvall who by this time was so fill with the holy ghost that she gave us an old fashioned holy ghost talk.

To say the least of it we had an all around good time that will dwell with the memory through time and eternity.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

A Visit To Old Piney Fork

                                                                                         Piney Fork Speaker's Lectern.

The lectern was removed from the tabernacle located next to the Piney Fork Cumberland Presbyterian Church when the historic old shed was taken down in the spring of 1970, due to damage caused by the heavy winter snow. The tabernacle shed was built in 1886. 
This lectern was made at this time, also constructed from lumber cut from the Henry Brown farm and hauled by oxen to the sawmill by Jim Bugg. It would be placed at the front of the new tabernacle. 

Also unique about this pulpit is that it has three podiums attached to it, the middle one for the Evangelist who was holding the services, the one of the right was for the pastor of the church at the time, and the one on the left for the song leader. 
On the front is built a bench, this was for sinners to sit on that had come down to except salvation after the invitation was given at the end of the sermon. Some of the greatest ministers of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church have delivered sermons at the Piney Fork annual camp meetings. 
(This piece of Piney Fork history is located at the Crittenden County Historical Museum)

From the Crittenden Press, August 24, 1936.

The annual services of Old Piney Fork Camp Ground closed last Friday evening, August 21, after eleven days of exceedingly successful communion, which resulted in 26 conversions and 30 additions to the church roll.

The Rev. J. E. Bell of Oklahoma, assisted the pastor, the Rev. Guy Moore, and preached from the same pulpit from which some of the greatest ministers of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church have delivered sermons, interest grew from the opening service and large audiences listened attentively to the great spiritual messages. 

Piney Fork is the oldest church in Crittenden County regardless of denomination, having been started in 1810.  The organization was completed in 1812 on a sixteen acre tract of land given by John Travis and George Greene.

The present building is 70 years and is the third building that has stood.

The revival which just closed, was held in the open-air tabernacle which seats 2,000 people. It was built about 50 years ago and is the second tabernacle to have been erected on that site.

Piney Fork Camp Meetings are famous throughout the land.  One hundred and four annual revivals have been held there.  

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Banker-Farm Day

In the 1950's the local banks of Marion, Farmers and People's, sponsored what they called Banker-Farmer Days at a local farmers farm.  The event was to share new and improved features on the farm, so other farmers could learn about these improvements and used them on their own farms.

In July 1950 this important and fun day was held on the Tom Carters Farm, located on Hebron Church Road.  Here is some of the history from an article in the July 7, 1950 Crittenden Press.

Improved pastures, fine beef cattle, a large farm reservoir and newly constructed terraces and diversion ditches for erosion control will be the main features observed on Tom Carters Farm.  

A large turn out always attended these special days of interest for our local agriculture and cattle raisers.

A tour would be conducted with stops at different points of interest and it would be pointed out their practical application as to how to help the farmers.  

Cattle was also an important part of the county and the Carter farm had some excellent cattle on hand to show the visitors.  Crittenden County had been breeding and producing a high grade of pure bred cattle for many years. 

At the close of the morning tour free lunch by the two banks would be served.  The lunch would be served by the Hebron Homemakers.  Around 300 attended the special farmers day.

In the afternoon there would be talks of interest by William Jonstone, Field Agent from the University of Kentucky, and Crittenden County's Farm Agent, O. M. Shelby.

Events such as these are now almost a thing of our past, as farming procedures have changed and there seems no need for these informative and enjoyable gatherings of our forgotten past.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Marion in the year 1910

It's interesting to learn of our past history from the old newspapers of long ago.  From The Crittenden Press files of January 1910 comes these interesting findings. 

January 1910.  Monday dawned bright and clear with the mercury too close to zero for one to be comfortable, and yet the people from all over Crittenden, Webster, Caldwell, Livingston and Union counties were in evidence, so that by noon the street was alive with busy stock buyers and traders.  It was the day for county court and the very popular "Jockey lot" day.

The newly elected officers of the county met in the court house at Marion and duly took the oath of their various offices.  The names of the new officials were:  
  • W. A. Blackburn, County Judge
  • John A. Moore, County Attorney
  • Learner E. Guess, County Clerk
  • Joel A. C. Pickens, Sheriff
  • Robert . Flanary, Circuit Clerk
  • William Wallace, Jailer
  • Ewell Jeffrey Travis, Supt. of Schools
  • Robert Thomas, Assissor
  • J. E. Sullenger, Surveyor
  • Dr. George W. Stone, Corner.
Here are three of the newly elected officers.  Left to right: John A. Moore, County Attorney, Ewell Jeffrey Travis, County School Superintendent, and Learner E. Guess, County Clerk.

Fluorspar brings boom in Crittenden.  Recent discoveries causes old mines to be reopened.
The recent developments, aided by the increase from $4 to $8 , and in some instances, $15 a ton for fluorspar has created an interest in mining circles.

The shipment from Marion also in the past couple of months has reached 16,000,000 pounds, or 8,000 tons, which has increased the deposits in the two banks in Marion a little less than $100,000,000.

Some surprisingly rich discoveries have been made in old mines abandoned 50 years ago for the reason that the richness of both lead and zinc was not known.  

Every mine is now working full force and many of them are putting in new machinery and increasing their capacity.

Other activity in the city and county for the month of January included deliveries of tobacco.  During the month of January the deliveries of tobacco here have been quite heavy.  Thirty, forty or fifty loads come into town every day.  The greater part of the tobacco goes to the stemming District Tobacco Association at the Jarvis factory.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Pleasant Paris, Civil War Veteran

The Paris reunion was held Sat. October 14th, 2017.  Descendants of James Paris of Smith County, Tenn., and friends attended.

As a special event for the day, Ralph Paris and kin, portrayed Union soldiers Pleasant Paris and his son, William J. Paris, at the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, on Pleasant Hill Cemetery Rd. a short distance from Marion.   Pictured above is Rodney portraying Pleasant Paris, and tells of his military history and his journey to Crittenden County.

Pleasant Paris' Civil War stone had been relocated from it's original site, which was a short distance from the Pleasant Hill Cemetery (used to be the Floyd Turley Farm), and placed here, as it would be more accessible to be cared for and preserved. 

The old abandoned cemetery were it was originally located was in terrible shape, as it hadn't been cared for in many years.  What few stones were there had been removed from their original location and placed by a tree.

Pleasant was the son of James Paris and Sarah Elizabeth Pendleton Paris.  He was born about 1813 in  Smith Co. Tennessee, was in Company B, 48th KY Inf.  He died Nov. 23, 1864 according to the application for his military marker.  

Robert Ward, from Caldwell County was on hand to give the dedication of Pleasant Paris's new stone location a Civil War gun salute.

It is always wonderful to see and learn the history of our Civil War veterans in such an authentic setting and location.  Thanks to Rodney (or Ralph) Paris for preserving this history.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

A Gay Party of Picnicers - 1894

Until the era of artificial pastimes, people enjoyed going to places of natural beauty or curiosity together with others for picnics, relaxation and fellowship.  A favorite destination was the beautiful Piney Bluffs.

Here's one story of such an event.  The C. P. Sunday School went on a picnic last Thursday to Iron Hill and the beautiful bluffs of Piney.  

It was a jolly crowd. The forenoon was spent in chatting, fishing, gathering wild flowers and strolling over the hills and bluffs and native forests of Piney.

The noontide hour was spent in enjoying the delicacies prepared for such an occasion.  

In the late afternoon we winded our way back to Marion over the hills and dells of our beautiful countryside.

All said they enjoyed the day. 

There are several of these wonderful old pictures that have been saved during the years, but none of them have all the people identified. 

 In the picture above only one person was identified, and that was of Ollie M. James, in the center of the picture standing and leaning against the bluff with his white hat in his hand.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Marion Free Will Baptist Church

One of Marion's old landmark churches is in the process of being torn down.  It is the Marion Free Will Baptist church that is located on South Main Street. It was one of two churches for the Black citizens in our community.  The other was a Methodist Church located on Maple Street, it was torn down many years ago.

                     (This is a picture of the church made in 1955.)

This church of Baptist denomination was active until approximately 10 years or so ago, according to Bob Hill, one of it's member's.  Maybe closed before 2007.

(From the little booklet titled: Churches In Our County, 1974).  The Free Will Baptist movement had been a continuous one, although at times the outlook was dark.  Hence, about June 21, 1887, Rev. Lank Grissom, Brother Jiles Hamilton, and others organized the Free Will Baptist church in Marion on old Salem Street. 

This church was torn down and our little group worshiped in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church while the present church was being erected on South Main Street under the leadership of Rev. E. S. Moody.

In 1974, the pastor was Rev. T. R. Hamilton, and Levi Jackson and Robert Qualls were deacons.

The church was remodeled sometime after 1974 when the booklet was printed and covered in wood siding and the bell tower was taken off.

The old landmark church is in the process of being taken down in October of 2017.  A few items of memorabilia has been saved and will be placed in the Crittenden County Historical Museum.