Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Piney Fork Camp Meetings

Another well-know Camp Meeting that used to be held in Crittenden County was the Piney Fork Camp Meetings.

This shed-like building was built in 1886 to hold services during the yearly camp meetings held on these church grounds starting in 1812.   This was the second such shed to be built here; the first was built around 1867 - it replaced a brush arbor.  This building, (picture above) which was designed to seat 1,000, was torn down in the spring of 1970, after extensive damage was done to its roof by the heavy winter snowfall.  The logs from which the lumber for this building was sawn were cut from the Henry Brown farm and were hauled by oxen to the sawmill by Jim Bugg.  The old pulpit that was used in the shed and several other items are in the Crittenden County Museum.

From the files of The Marion News, August 28, 1936, here is an interesting article about one of the old camp meetings at Piney Fork.

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 Tecumseh, Okla., 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 by the Rev. Finis Ewing, who was pastor for several years.  The first building was erected in 1812 on a sixteen-acre tract of land given by John Travis and George Green.  The present building is 70 years old and is the third building that has stood.

The revival which just closed, was held in the open-air tabernacle which eats 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.

No comments: