OUR CHURCH — THEN AND NOW
Seaboard Methodist Church, 1958
In his challenging book, “American Heroes and Hero-Worship,” by Gerald W. Johnson, the distinguished American author and former North Carolinian says:
“Nothing changes more constantly than the past; for the past that influences our lives . . . . does not consist of what actually happened, but of what men believed happened. It is not upon the event that we act, but upon our belief about that event.”
In this booklet, “Our Church—Then and Now,” we have tried to discover some of the major events in our Church history and relate those events to the lives of members who lived during a particular era.
In attempting to meet this goal, we realize how correct was Mr. Johnson in his statement that the history of events is in reality the story of what people believed happened.
It is to be expected that older generations of our Church may differ as to the when, what, why and how of events. Vague and incomplete Church records make accurate research a difficult task. Memories also dim as years come and go.
Yet, in mid-century where events have happened before our very eyes, there is also a difference of opinion about the circumstances surrounding events.
Nevertheless, it is our belief that the history of the Seaboard Methodist Church as related within these pages is basically factual. Furthermore, we believe this booklet will stimulate our Church officials and its members to keep more accurate records as well as more personal history of their families. Emerson, the great American essayist, once said: “There is properly no history, only biography.”
It is therefore with grateful hearts and deep appreciation that we thank the members of our Church, and members of the Baptist Church as well, who labored so long and so hard to help make our dream of a Church history a reality.Steering Committee
MRS. ELIZABETH B. HOWELL, Chairman
MRS. FANNIE EMMA BICKLEY BULLOCK
MRS. MARY FRANCES STEPHENSON DRAPER
MRS. LOUISE WARMACK HARRIS
MRS. MARGARET HARRIS LEAKE
MRS. LUCY LEAKE SPAINE
MRS. OLIVE JENNETTE VICKOur Authors
|WALTER D. BARBEE||MRS. ELIZABETH B. HOWELL|
|MRS. ANNIE TAYLOR BASS||MRS. RUTH VICK O'BRIEN|
|MRS. ELIZABETH BOTTOMS BULLOCK||MRS. MARTHA MADDREY|
|REV. C. MANESS MITCHELL|
|B. REESE BULLOCN||MRS. VIVIAN PROCTOR MITCHELL|
|MRS. MARY FRANCES STEPHENSON DRAPER||MRS. FRANCIS RAMSAY MAGEE|
|MRS. LUCY LEAKE SPAINE|
|MRS. BERNICE KELLY HARRIS||MRS. SHIRLEY WARRICK TAYLOR|
|MRS. LOUISE WARMACK HARRIS||MRS. O. JENNETTE VICK|
NOTE: In identifying the women members of our Church—both past and present—the authors have used two methods. In Chapter VII—“Our Church—Its Women and Their Work,” we have used the maiden name of married women together with their husband's. In other chapters, we have used the names by which they are best known in the community—either maiden name plus husband's name or their husband's name alone.Contents
|A Look Into the Past||1|
|The Rise and Spread of Methodism||8|
|The Principles and Spiritual Values of Methodism||16|
|Our Church—1880-1922—The First Era||24|
|Our New Church—1922-1950—The Second Era||37|
|Our Church at Mid-Century—1950-1958—The Third Era||44|
|Our Church—Its Sunday School||54|
|Our Church—Its Women and Their Work||61|
|Our Church—In the Service of Our Country||70|
|Our Church—Dedication of Educational Annex—The Fourth Era||74|
|PART II: Our Families, Past and Present||83|
|PART III: Appendix||199|
|List of Bishops, Presiding Elders and Pastors, 1880-1958||151|
|Church Deeds: First Seaboard Methodist Church Deed—1881||153|
|Second Seaboard Methodist Church Deed—1922||154|
When one loves his locale, his appraisal of it is necessarily subjective. “This is my own, my native land” has connotations of affection and pride not only for the poet who voiced it, but for the ordinary citizen who is less articulate but no less prideful and loving. To him his community is uniquely gracious in spirit and in projection of that spirit. Even objective observers would doubtless agree upon the friendliness and graciousness of Seaboard as manifested by its people. It is not a showy friendliness, however, to be evaluated by synthetic gestures and protestations, but rather it is authentic and responsive to the exigencies that validate its reality.
Friendliness is essentially the spirit of Seaboard, and there are many facets of it.
There is warmth in the response to need when once that need, whether insistently tangible or subtle, becomes evident. Surely Seaboard is unique in its warm-hearted answer to the calls for material help and in its organization of opportunities to serve herein. There is generosity as well as warmth of feeling in the responses. If the intrinsic value of gifts to community exigency could be totaled, even over a period of two decades, the result would amaze the generous citizenry itself.
There is cooperation. This does not imply an easy acceptance of causes, untested and unprobed by thinking people. But once convinced of merit in the appeal, a people are enlisted in mind as well as in heart to work together to accomplish worthy objectives.
There have been beautiful examples of this spirit of cooperation in religious, civic and cultural life in general. It has manifested itself in the fellowship and love between the two churches. Once during a vacancy in the Baptist pulpit, the Methodist minister was a real pastor to the Baptists, even on occasions holding their prayer meetings for them. While Baptists were building their new church, Seaboard Methodists made available to them their own sanctuary for their worship services. Cooperation among the Methodists themselves has made possible the notable history of Methodism in this area.
In larger aim and purpose and in brotherly affection, indeed, the people are one. Friendship cements the fellowship, and its warmth extends to all the areas of living.
The citizens of the community go more or less equably about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Not uncompromisingly heroic in equivocal situations, perhaps, they yet have given sons to become veterans and casualties of Corregidor and Guadalcanal and Normandy beaches and Iwo Jima.
What better summing up is there than to say a people gives its allegiance to its country and to its God!
—Bernice Kelly HarrisPART ONE
THE life story of a church is the life story of people as well. The story must, therefore, be related to the history of the community. It must tell something about the life of the families and individuals whose spiritual and financial contriutions made the church possible.
Accordingly, a “Look into the Past” is necessary if one is to appreciate fully the rich history of the Seaboard Methodist Church. It should be recalled that on June 11, 1739, John Wesley, the Founder of Methodism said: “I look upon all the world as my parish.”The Founding Fathers in Northampton County
The first record of a Methodist Church in Northampton County, North Carolina, is shown by a deed for an acre of land, “with all houses, buildings and every other appurtenance,” signed on June 12, 1793. This deed is recorded on page 60 of Book 10 in the Office of the Northampton County Register of Deeds. It was given by one Howell Hobbs of Brunswick County, Virginia, to the “Founding Fathers” of Methodism in Northampton County. Coming from the border of Virginia and North Carolina in the Northeastern part of the county, the Founding Fathers were: Matthew Myrick and Nathaniel Mason of Virginia; John Moore and Nancy King of the County of Northampton, North Carolina.
For the sum of twenty shillings (current money of Virginia), land was thus conveyed for the first Methodist Church in Northampton County. Known as Concord Meeting House, the
church still stands, bearing this simple legend: “Concord M. E. Church—1795.” Concord was however a part of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.
In her “History of Northampton County Churches”, Mrs. Nancy Moore Froelich, historian of the Northampton Historical Society, points out the evangelistic zeal of the Founding Fathers for the spread of Methodism. From a memorandum written on June 5, 1793, before the deed was signed on June 12, 1793, Mrs. Froelich makes this interesting summary of the intent of the Church Fathers.
“Memorandum made this fifth day of June 1793 especially specifies that the above-named committee doth hereby covenant and agree for themselves and their heirs forever that the within acre of land and buildings thereon shall be appropriated to the sole use and benefits of the preachers of the Methodist Episcopal Church to expound the word of God in so long as they shall preach the doctrines contained in Mr. Wesley's notes on the New Testament and his four volumes of sermons.”Concord Methodist Episcopal Church—1795
For the historical minded, the name—Concord—proposes an interesting speculation. There are those who say that the name relates to another Concord, famous in American history. For it was just 20 years before—1775—that Paul Revere made his famous midnight dash from Boston to Concord, 21 miles away, to warn the people in every village and on every farm that the British were coming and to get up and fight.
Within those 20 years, our nation had won its freedom, established a federal government and gained the admiration of the world. In 1795, George Washington was also serving out the remaining year of his second term as President.
It can, therefore, be imagined that the patriots who founded and helped develop Concord Church were not unmindful of the great courage of the embattled farmers in Concord town when they gave the British.
“- - - - ball for ball
From behind each fence and farm-yard wall, chasing the redcoats down the lane, then crossing the fields to emerge again, under the trees at the turn of the road, and only pausing to fire and load.”Concord Becomes A Community Center
Situated on an important thoroughfare between Emporia, Virginia, and Franklin, Virginia, Concord Church drew its parishioners from the rich plantation owners and the rural belles and gay young blades as well as from the poor and enslaved. Old records point out that the pious settlers established the church for the “better instruction of unwary youth, the expounding of truth to untutored slaves, and the spiritual consolation of the old.”
All-day religious festivals brought out the families for miles around. Usually held in August, these festivals were characterized by exhortings, shouting and praying in the church with great feasts spread under the oaks for relaxation. At noon time slaves passed platters of delectable foods prepared under the direction of the mistresses of the plantations.
It was during this hour of relaxation that youth had its day. Exhausted from the exhortations of the morning and quieted by the feast of the hour, the elderly and pious dozed under the oaks while the belles and the blades shyly sought each others’ company. Such gatherings occasionally brought about love affairs that led to lavish weddings in the big mansions on the plantations where feasting and dancing lasted ’til dawn.
The founders of Concord Methodist Episcopal Church and the early families who promoted its growth were pious and proud people who believed devoutly in the principles of Methodism as outlined by its founder, John Wesley. These principles constituted a way of life that was hammered into the hearts and minds of each succeeding generation. Over the breakfast table and in the evening hour of prayer, parents explained to their children the spiritual values of Methodism and the importance of building strong Methodist families. Service to the church, community and nation, they said, was a major requirement of all good Methodists.
John Wesley himself laid down the importance of Service in one of his Letters devoted to “Rule of Conduct”:“Do all the good you can,By all the means you can,In all the ways you can,In all the places you can,At all the times you can,To all the people you can,As long as ever you can.”
The significant relationship between Old Concord Church and the Seaboard Methodist Church lies in the continuity of leadership handed down through generations of old Concord families who later became leaders in the Seaboard Methodist Church.
The Captain Nathaniel Mason, 1757-1834, who was a Concord Founding Father, is the great, great, great-grandfather of Dr. John W. Parker, Jr., a leader in the Seaboard Methodist Church for the past 30 years.
Reid Vick Harris, one of our able young leaders, is a descendant of William Reid, the father of Alex Reid, Reid Harris’ great-grandfather on his mother's side.
Mrs. Maggie Vassar Stephenson is also a descendant of the Vassars who were active in the early Concord Church.Pleasant Grove Methodist Episcopal Church—1836
After the organization of Concord Methodist Episcopal Church in 1795, Methodism began to spread to other communities in Northampton County. Pleasant Grove Methodist Episcopal Church, now a part of the Seaboard charge, followed in 1836.
According to an article written by Mrs. Willie Pritchard Matthews in the JACKSON NEWS of August 6, 1937:
This first church building of 1836 was a small one-room, frame building, only weatherboarded and without ceiling, plaster, paint and even without a means of heating. When the house was ready for worship, there arose the problem of a name for it. One of the very devout and active members of the church, Miss Elizabeth Roland, suggested the name of Pleasant Grove because she said the shade trees surrounding the new church made a very pleasant grove for the meetings. The congregation was pleased with Miss Roland's suggestion, and by this name the proud members called their house of worship.
As we check the roll of the Seaboard Methodist Church for the years of 1885 to 1892, we find that many of the members transferred from Pleasant Grove Church. C. W. Rose and T. B. Rose had transferred by 1886.
Other transfers were: John T. Ramsay, brother of J. H. Ramsay; Mrs. Helen Bridgers Joyner, mother of Bertha Joyner Parker; Rupert N. Bridgers; Henry E. Bridgers; and Miss Johnnie Sue Bridgers, our first organist.
T. S. Taylor, a member of Seaboard Methodist Episcopal Church's first Board of Trustees, came from Pleasant Grove. He was the son of Rev. Turner S. Taylor, the great-grandfather of Lucy Leake Spaine and Florence Leake Crocker.
W. H. Ivey, another member of Seaboard's first Board of Trustees, was a Pleasant Grove transfer. Mr. Ivey was the father of Mrs. J. P. Spencer and Mrs. Millard Long, devoted Seaboard members, and the grandfather of J. P. Spencer, Jr., now on the Seaboard Official Board.
Thomas R. Hargrove, and Sarah and Frank M. Reese, original Seaboard members, were also transfers.Sharon Methodist Episcopal Church—1839
Three years after the founding of the Pleasant Grove Methodist Church, another Methodist Church—Sharon—was organized.
When the beautiful new Sharon Church was dedicated on October 23, 1955, the Dedication program presented a brief history of the Church:
Long before a building was erected, a bush arbor was made near this spot and different preachers were invited to stop by and hold services for the people. It was on September 7th, 1839, that Macajah Garriss gave a deed for three acres of land, upon which to erect a meeting house. . . . The site of the church was given with the understanding, stated in the deed, that a meeting house be erected and that a minister be employed from the Conference, a man able and willing to exhort and expound the Word of God. A one-room wooden structure was erected on the given site. The pews of the church were quite high, and the pulpit stood afar off where only the head of the minister could be seen. A division ran down the center aisle, one side used exclusively for men and the other for women. Sharon was the name selected for the church, meaning a beautiful place.
The Sanctuary of the Church
Photo of exterior of Concord Church
The Exterior and Interior of Concord Church
Many past and present members of the Seaboard Methodist Church came from old Sharon Church families. Among past members are: William Robert Vick, deceased; Charles Booker Vick, deceased; Mrs. Aggie Vick Edwards, deceased. Present membership includes Dr. C. L. Vick and Mrs. Elizabeth Bottoms Bullock.
From these accounts of early Church history, we learn that of the four Churches now on the Seaboard Charge, three were founded before the War Between the States, 1861-1865: Concord, 1795; Pleasant Grove, 1836; and Sharon, 1839.
It was not until 1880, however, that the Seaboard Methodist Church was born. From the date of the founding of Sharon in 1839, Northampton County citizens were destined to endure the rigors of two wars: the War with Mexico, 1846-1848; and the War Between the States, 1861-1865, with the aftermath of the Reconstruction Period, 1865-1877.
Out of these long and torturous years of Reconstruction, law and order was finally re-established in the South. Our people then turned their talents once more toward the building of homes, churches and communities.
By 1880, the Seaboard Methodists were preparing to organize a Church community and to build a place of worship.
HALFORD E. LUCCOCK states that “The Greatest Beginning of all was in a manger and in an obscure home in Nazareth. Methodism, very fittingly, was born in a nursery.” For the training which John Wesley received in the nursery at his mother's knee was the seed-plot of the Methodist movement.
In 1729, John and Charles Wesley began Bible reading and practicing inward and outward holiness, and they invited others to do so. The Holy Club at Oxford University was an outgrowth of this practice.
John and Charles Wesley came to Savannah in 1735 as missionaries of the Church of England (of which both were members and clergymen) to work among the Indians in Governor Oglethorpe's colony. They had great plans for their work among the heathen savages, but John soon realized his mission was a failure. Finally on December 22, 1737, he returned to England, Charles having sailed the previous year. On the boat trip to America John had become associated with a group of Moravians and was impressed with their faith. This association continued in Georgia and was renewed in England upon his return. On the evening of May 24, 1739, he very “unwillingly” accompanied a friend to a society on Aldersgate Street in London. Here he had his heart-warming experience. Here the Methodist Church in England was born.
From England, Methodism spread to Ireland and thence to America by immigration. Early leaders in the movement in America were Robert Strawbridge in Maryland (after 1760),
Philip Embury in New York (1766), George Whitefield, Freeborn Garrettson, Francis Asbury (1771), and others.
In answer to the request from the American colonists for preachers, John Wesley sent Richard Boardman and Joseph Pilmoor in 1769 as the first regular itinerant Methodist preachers. Their appointment: America. Pilmoor went first to Philadelphia, then south to Maryland, Virginia, and finally in 1772 became the first itinerant Methodist preacher to enter North Carolina. He preached at Coinjock September 28, 1772, and continued along the eastern coast, stopping at Edenton, Bath, New Bern, Wilmington. George Whitefield, who came to America about the time John Wesley returned to England from Georgia, had visited in North Carolina several times (1740, 1748, 1764) and had preached in several eastern towns. There were some Methodists living in the colony, but there was no organized society. Whitefield was not here in the capacity of an itinerant minister.Methodism Is Organized in North Carolina
To Robert Williams goes the distinction of having organized the first Methodist society in North Carolina, in 1773 or 1774 (the exact date is uncertain). He made out a plan for a six weeks’ circuit from Petersburg to the south over the Roanoke River some distance into North Carolina. Williams was instrumental in bringing Jesse Lee, one of our first and finest preachers, into the Methodist Church. When Williams married in 1775, he was forced to locate in order to support a wife. He died later that same year, September 26, 1775.
A period of great revival began in southern Virginia in 1775 and swept into Halifax and Bute (later divided to form Franklin and Warren) Counties in North Carolina. By the close of the revival in 1776, more than 1880 new members had been
added. This led to the formation of the Carolina Circuit, May 21, 1776, with Edward Dromgoole, Francis Poythress, and Isham Tatum as pastors. The circuit included the eastern half of the state. In 1777, there were four pastors assigned to the circuit—John Dickins, John King whose family in England disinherited him when he refused to return to the Church of England, Lee Roy Cole, and Edward Pride.
So great were their labors that in 1778 the North Carolina Circuit was divided to form three circuits—New Hope, Tar River, and Roanoke. William Glendenning was appointed the first pastor of the Roanoke Circuit. He was Jesse Lee's pastor and made him class leader. Later Glendenning went insane, but recovered and settled near Raleigh, where he had a publishing business.
John Dickins traveled Roanoke Circuit in 1779-80. It was he who suggested the name Methodist Episcopal Church which was adopted at the Christmas Conference in Baltimore, 1784. He also made the motion to establish a college, and Cokesbury College was subsequently built in 1787. In 1786, he prepared for publication the first Discipline in its present form (divided into sections instead of questions and answers). When the Book Concern was established in 1789, he used $600 of his own money for capital and became the first Book Agent. He served in this capacity until his death in 1798.
Among the early preachers who served Roanoke Circuit were: 1782—James Martin; 1783—John Easter and William Dameron; 1789—Jonathan Bird; 1795—Daniel Shines; 1797—William Ormond who left money to build Ormond's Chapel between Kinston and Snow Hill, near his home community. Thomas Bowen served Roanoke Circuit sometime prior to 1790 when he became Presiding Elder; later he served as Book Steward in 1795.
John Tunnell was Presiding Elder of the Yadkin District in 1785, an area which included Roanoke, Caswell, New Hope, Guilford, Salisbury, Yadkin, and Halifax Circuits. He carried Methodism west of the Blue Ridge Mountains. In 1800, Francis Poythress was Presiding Elder of the large area from Asheville to Hatteras, from Wilmington to the Virginia line.The Famous Roanoke Circuit
When the Roanoke Circuit was formed in 1778, its area was along the Roanoke River and probably included Bertie, Northampton, Halifax, and Warren Counties. It has been called the “Cradle of Methodism in North Carolina.” The Roanoke Circuit has always been an honored name in the annals of Methodist history. Here Lovick Pierce, one of the publishing agents of the church, was born. In the bounds of this circuit at “The Old Barn”, Jesse Lee preached his first sermon on September 17, 1779. He took John Dickins’ place on the Roanoke Circuit for a few weeks in 1779. One of the finest preachers of Methodism, he was the church's first historian, author of “Short History of the Methodists.”
The Roanoke Circuit had 480 members in 1780. By 1790, the one circuit had been divided to form Camden, Bertie, Roanoke, and New River Circuits, with a membership of 3072 whites, and 1220 colored. The records of 1800 show that the following circuits were in existence: Roanoke, Pamlico, Newbern, Goshen, Contentney, Camden, Bertie, Banks, and Mattamuskeet, with a white membership of 2073.
In 1796 North Carolina was second to Virginia in the number of members of the Methodist Church. And by 1805 the North Carolina Circuit had increased from one to twenty-two circuits, with 11,000 members.
Francis Asbury was sent to America by Wesley in 1771, to be superintendent of all the work in America. His travels carried him across the length and breadth of the land. His journal records that he entered North Carolina June 16, 1780. From then until July 3, he traveled the Roanoke Circuit, preaching in homes and crude log chapels or outdoors. In January 1784, he was again in North Carolina, first in the eastern section, then through Bertie, Northampton, and Hertford Counties.
In 1784, Dr. Thomas Coke was sent to America by Wesley with instructions to form a separate church in the new country. Coke and Asbury met together and worked out plans for the organization, and on Christmas Eve, 1784, at Lovely Lane Chapel in Baltimore, the preachers met and organized The Methodist Episcopal Church. Asbury and Coke were elected the first bishops. The following spring, the first annual conference of The Methodist Episcopal Church was held at Green Hill's house, one mile from Louisburg, North Carolina, on April 20, 1785. The conference was attended by Asbury, Coke, and twenty preachers from this area. There was no housing problem—they simply slept on the floor. The office of Presiding Elder was born at this meeting.
Called the “Prophet of the Long Road,” Francis Asbury was continually going, superintending the work, preaching, holding conferences, and founding new churches. The Church was growing, but men were giving their lives upon its altars.
The early pioneers were an unusual group. They attended no theological schools, only “Brush Colleges” (on-the-job training you might say). With the Bible and Discipline as their principal books, they not only helped to build churches,
they helped to build a Nation out of the wilderness—both physical and human. Most did not serve long in the itinerancy. Many died young (nearly half who died before 1847 were less than thirty years old) or were forced to locate for health reasons. When they married, many were forced to locate because they could not support a wife and family on the preacher's salary—$64 annually until the General Conference in 1792 added travel, etc. Wedding fees were acceptable, but fees for baptisms and funerals were strictly forbidden.
Methodism was especially adapted to American life. These itinerant preachers served the people under conditions where a settled ministry was not feasible. They followed the tide of migration as it moved west, preached the gospel, organized societies, and formed these into circuits. At first Methodism was looked upon as a despised and persecuted sect. The preachers were often persecuted during these early years, but they were a consecrated group of men who labored earnestly and fruitfully.
Francis Asbury's journal records a total of sixty-three trips in North Carolina, and it is quite likely that he preached at Concord Church on one of his trips. The Concord Society in 1793 was looking forward to the purchase of land and the erection of a meeting house. This dream was fulfilled in 1795 when the property was deeded to the “Founding Fathers.” We do know from Asbury's journal that he also preached several times at Rehoboth Chapel in Northampton County. While the building itself was not erected until 1798, the church or society had its beginning in the home of Richard Whitaker, probably as early as 1785. Asbury visited in his home several times. There were few churches in those days. The preaching places were usually in homes, barns, schools, or outdoors in bush arbors when the weather permitted.
The influence of the Methodist Societies has been felt in the communities of Northampton County through the years. The Reverend Turner Stephens Taylor, a resident of the Mount Carmel community, felt this influence and began to preach in the early 1800's. He was the father of T. S. Taylor, one of the trustees on the original deed of the Seaboard Methodist Episcopal Church, South. His grandson, the Reverend Charles R. Taylor, served in the Arkansas, Virginia, and North Carolina Conferences. Among the descendants of this pioneer preacher in our membership today are Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass, Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine, and Mrs. Florence Leake Crocker. While the Seaboard Church has not sent any of its sons into the ministry of the church, there are families in our membership who have given of their sons to the ministry through other Methodist congregations.
Rufus Bradley joined the North Carolina Annual Conference in 1894 and served for forty-three years. His mother, Mrs. Mary E. (Mollie) Bradley, transferred to Seaboard from Pleasant Grove in 1901. T. M. Grant in his memoir said, “We are happy that he lived and dwelt among us. We know God lives because he lived in Rufus Bradley.”
John G. Long, Jr., whose father transferred to Seaboard from Concord, is a member of the Virginia Conference.
Richard Clifton Spaine, Jr., is director of the Wesley Foundation at Iowa State Teachers College. He went out from Broad Street Methodist Church, Portsmouth, Virginia, before his mother, Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine, returned to Seaboard and again joined the church of her youth.
The rapid growth of Methodism in the early days, as sketched above, could not have taken place by the work of ministers alone. It was by and large the teamwork between the consecrated laymen with warm hearts and their pastors. Both the laymen and ministers were dedicated to the faith and guided by the doctrines described below.
BISHOP CHARLES C. SELECMAN in The Methodist Primer writes: “The Methodist Church may be said to represent the trained mind, the warm heart, and the serving hand.”
John Wesley was taught at his mother's knee, then attended Charter House School, London, and Oxford University. Then followed his heart-warming experience at Aldersgate Meeting House on May 24, 1738. Out of this heart-warming experience he went forth to serve.
Methodism today is continuing what its human founder started.The Trained Mind
Methodism began in a college. Methodism was born with a passion for education. The Christmas Conference in Baltimore, 1784, voted to establish a college. Cokesbury College at Abingdon, Maryland, opened its doors in 1787. This was done despite the fact that of the 83 preachers in America in 1784, only Dr. Thomas Coke had attended College or had even what we today would consider a high school education! All of the 63 preachers who were present were desperately poor financially, but these men of faith and vision began to pledge and raise the money before leaving the Conference.
The circuit riders were educators as they visited in pioneer homes and brought news from the outside world. Many children were taught their ABC's, as well as the teachings of Jesus, in the Sunday Schools.
North Carolina Methodists had an early concern for education. Francis Asbury made a tour of the Roanoke Circuit with John Dickins in the summer of 1780. While visiting in the home of Brother Bustian, Dickins drew up a subscription list for a Kingswood School in America. Brother Bustian and Gabriel Long (a non-Methodist) made the first subscriptions to this school—and this was while the colonies were still struggling for their independence and the future was unknown. Cokesbury School on the Yadkin River in Davie County was the first school sponsored and maintained by a conference in Methodism. It was opened sometime prior to 1793.
There were several small Christian colleges in eastern North Carolina, including Wesleyan Female College at Murfreesboro, Carolina College at Maxton, Louisburg College, and Littleton Female College. Many young ladies from this area attended Littleton Female College. This school was begun in January 1882 as Central Institute. It was granted a new charter in 1887 and the name changed to Littleton Female College. The influence of this school is evidenced by the following excerpt from the 1887 Journal of the North Carolina Annual Conference:
We are pleased to learn that this institution, located at Littleton, N. C., is in a growing and prosperous condition, the patronage increasing since last January from 20 to 79 pupils. This school deserves the attention and support of our people.
Professor J. M. Rhodes purchased this property in the spring of 1899, and became its president in August of that year. He maintained that relationship for thirty years, or until the night of January 22, 1919, when flames swept away the entire college plant, leaving only the steel water tower standing as a lone sentinel on the deserted campus.
The Methodist Church is still building schools to meet not only the educational needs, but the spiritual needs, of today's students. Again North Carolina is leading the way with two new colleges now under construction, North Carolina Wesleyan College at Rocky Mount and Methodist College at Fayetteville.
In his little book, Endless Line of Splendor, Halford E. Luccock tells us that “Martin Luther is reported to have thrown a bottle of ink at the Devil once . . . Churches have been throwing ink at Satan since the invention of the printing press.” John Wesley began the Methodist printing business, and he insisted that the circuit riders carry tracts with them to sell or distribute. The Book Concern, started in 1789, has been in operation ever since, and is now the largest Protestant publishing establishment in the world. The Methodist Publishing House, as it is now called, uses three carloads of paper each working day and one hundred tons of ink annually—quite a large bottle of ink to throw at the Devil!The Warm Heart
Membership in The Methodist Church is based on a personal, vital religious experience that is fitted to the spiritual needs of each individual, rather than being determined by conformity to some creed or form. As John Wesley expressed it once, “We think and let think.” Conduct rather than creed is still the test of membership in the Methodist Church.
Through the General Board of Evangelism, The Methodist Church is actively engaged in a program to carry the good news of Jesus to all men and to strengthen and undergird the spiritual life of all Christians.The Serving Hand
In 1739, when the Bishop of Bristol refused John Wesley permission to preach in his parish, Wesley replied, “The world is my parish.” Following this principle and Jesus’ command, “Go ye into all the world . . .”, The Methodist Church has become a world church with a world vision.
Through the Division of World Missions, work is carried on in more than fifty countries. Our one thousand missionaries work with more than 16,000 trained Christian national workers to carry out its program of medical, evangelistic, social, and educational work. In addition, the Woman's Division of Christian Service has approximately 500 missionaries serving in thirty-two countries.
The Division of National Missions serves missionary and church extension needs in the United States and its territories, Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. It includes work among language and racial groups, in remote mountain and rural areas, settlement work in cities and industrial areas. In the field of church extension, the Board of Missions makes loans and grants to modernize existing churches and to erect new churches in new population centers. The North Carolina Annual Conference leads to all others in the field of church extension, having begun seventy new churches in the last seven years.
The Methodist Orphanage (now The Methodist Home for Children, Inc.) at Raleigh was founded in 1898 to provide a home for homeless children. The first building was completed in 1900. At this time thirty-two children were enrolled under the supervision of the Reverend J. W. Jenkins.
Methodists believe that Jesus is the Savior of all, and the task of getting the message of Jesus to all is the responsibility of all Christians.
“Methodism stands for an inclusive Christianity, believing that the things that unite Christians are more important than the things that divide,” is Dr. Gilbert T. Rowe's definition of our church's ecumenical spirit. It was this spirit that led the three branches of Methodism to unite in 1939. It is this same spirit that now is leading to the study of possible union with the United Evangelical Brethren and the Episcopal Churches. Methodism was also one of the leading forces in the formation and support of the World Council of Churches.
John Wesley said: “If thy heart be right with my heart, give me thy hand.” The Methodist Church extends the hand of brotherhood to “the Christians of other Churches and the Churches of other Christians.”
From its inception The Methodist Church has been concerned about bringing wholesomeness to an unwholesome society. Members of the Holy Club at Oxford visited jails, taught Sunday classes for children who worked in mines and factories and could not attend school, and distributed food and clothing to those in need.
In 1908, the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church adopted “The Social Creed of the Methodist Episcopal Church.” Its aim was to help prevent social evils as well as to minister to the victims. It declares that the church stands for equal rights and justice for all men; abolition for child labor and regulation of work for women; abatement of poverty and liquor traffic and other evils that threaten society; for a living wage and the right of workers to unite.
In our historic position we have sought to follow Christ in bringing the whole of life, with its activities, possessions, and relationships, into conformity with the will of God.
—from The Social Creed of The Methodist Church.
With official observers in Washington and the United Nations, the Methodist Church today is voicing in firm tones
its opposition to those forces which do not permit the abundant life to be available to all.Prominent Doctrines of The Methodist Church
1. Universal Redemption—Christ died for all men, and salvation is for all men.
2. Repentance—All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and therefore need a Savior who can say, “Thy sins which are many are forgiven.”
3. Justification—Forgiveness of sins. Justification is by faith and only through the merit of Christ and is proved by works.
4. Regeneration—Spiritual rebirth in Christ. “Justification is the removal of guilt, while regeneration is the removal of the pollution of sin.”—N. C. Methodist Handbook, 1905.
5. Sanctification—John Wesley described this doctrine as a life fully surrendered to love God with the whole heart and our neighbors as ourselves. It has been called “perfect love”.
6. Witness of the Spirit—“By the witness of the Spirit, I mean an inward impression on the soul, whereby the Spirit of God, immediately and directly, witnesses to my spirit that I am a child of God; that Jesus Christ hath loved me and given himself for me; that all my sins are blotted out, and I, even I, am reconciled to God.”—John Wesley.
7. Childhood Religion—John Wesley was a pioneer in religious instruction of children. The Church stresses infant baptism and urges that children be given religious training by precept and example from the earliest days.
8. Sacraments—The Church practices two sacraments which were ordained of Christ our Lord in the Gospel—Baptism and the Supper of the Lord. “Baptism is the symbol of purification; it is the emblem of the baptism by the Spirit of God; it is the sign and seal of a new spiritual birth.” Baptism may be by sprinkling, pouring, or immersion.
All followers of Christ who desire to partake with us of the symbols of the body and blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ may do so.
9. Final Apostasy—This doctrine teaches that it is possible to fall into sin again after justification, but by the grace of God we may rise
again and amend our lives. Therefore, we should not deny the place of forgiveness to such as truly repent.
These were not theoretical doctrines but were practical guides in the life of the early church. Judge Gaston, one of the most eminent jurists of his day, and who was a Roman Catholic in his religion, said that “the Methodist ministry had done more to improve the society of the rural districts than any other class of men, or any other class of agencies that had ever been brought to bear on this subject.”Where To From Here?
We must not be satisfied simply to hold on firmly to the past. We must be adventurous. We must reach out and take firm hold of the future.
The chief dangers that lay in the path of Methodism as it spread itself from Aldersgate over all the earth as a vital religious force still lurk along the way to hinder its effectiveness today. John Wesley wrote of the dangers on August 6, 1786, as follows:
I am not afraid that the people called Methodists should ever cease to exist either in Europe or America. But I am afraid lest they should exist only as a dead sect, having the form of religion without the power. And this undoubtedly will be the case unless they hold fast both the doctrine, spirit and discipline with which they first set out.
We have the physical plant ample for the needs of the present. We must be alert not to lose “the power of godliness,” but to seek after it relentlessly.
Halford E. Luccock writes: “Christianity is a serial story. It has been published in great installments.”
The history of our church is a story to be continued. Some of the installments are to be written by us. The broad outline is apparent already. The details must be filled in from day to day and year to year.
Pleasant Grove Church
Pleasant Grove Church (TOP); Sharon Grove Church (BOTTOM)
ASSEMBLY ROOM OF THE ANNEX BUILDING
- FIRST ROW (LEFT TO RIGHT): Yvonne Edwards, Nancy Ann Crocker, Philip Mitchell, Andrew Mitchell, Melody Edwards, Dana K. Edwards, Jennifer Bass, Stan Ramsay, Harvey “Butch” Irvin. SECOND ROW: Elaine Draper, Charles Mitchell, Marcia Ramsay, Patricia Edwards, Willie Edwards, Hank Ramsay, Robbie Bass, James Hilton Little. THIRD ROW: Mary Ann Mumford, Ann White, Steve Edwards, Gene Taylor, Joe Magee, Claire Irvin, Billy Reese Bullock, Steve Taylor. TEACHERS: Rachal Little, Helen Irvin, Hazel Edwards, Cleo White, Elizabeth B. Bullock, Shirley Warrick Taylor.
The emphasis of the future should be personal spiritual enrichment. The vehicles of this enrichment must be a trained mind, an awakened social concern, a dedicated and active stewardship of time, abilities, and means.
On the level of the local church this means we must not organize as an end in itself, but that every member of the Official Board, the Commission on Membership and Evangelism, the Commission on Education, the Commission on Missions, the Commission on Stewardship and Finance, and other committees and officers must perform their task as a work of Christian worship to Almighty God. Their work cannot be done most effectively without the support of every member.
Today we join our hands and hearts to go forward in the blessed hope“That in the name of Jesus,The World shall be reborn.”(Vachel Lindsay, in “Endless Line of Splendor”)
RECORDS show that the town of Seaboard, North Carolina, had a considerable number of Methodists long before 1880. Using an old wooden schoolhouse as a meeting place, the Methodist population in 1880 took steps to secure land for the purpose of building a church. Old Seaboard residents recall the old schoolhouse with pleasant memories. Situated on the spot where the C. R. Kee residence now stands, the school building was later bought by J. R. Bradley who moved and renovated the building into a beautiful home for his family. It is still a gracious home with Mrs. J. R. Bradley, Sr. and her daughter, Edith, as residents.
The Founding Fathers of the Seaboard Methodist Episcopal Church, South, consisted of the first Board of Trustees and the early Stewards. The members of the first Board of Trustees were: F. E. Foster, W. H. Bridgers, T. S. Taylor, W. H. Ivey and W. H. Lynn. The first Steward mentioned in Church records was “Brother W. F. Grubbs,” 1885. In 1900, records show the names of J. G. L. Crocker and W. F. Grubbs. Church Conference Records for February 11, 1900 say: “Stewards report being called for the assessment plan for raising preacher's salary. Subject was discussed and adopted and a committee consisting of the Stewards, J. G. L. Crocker and W. F. Grubbs and the following Church members, R. W. Edwards, T. B. Rose, M. R. Stephenson, Mrs. R. W. Edwards, Mrs. M. R. Stephenson and Mrs. W. S. Pruden was appointed to fix and determine the amount each member should contribute.”Land Is Deeded to the Trustees
The deed to the land for the First Seaboard Methodist Church was given on August 5, 1881, by Joseph M. Phillips, Arnetta E. Ramsay and John Ramsay of Northampton County to the above named Trustees for the “consideration of ten dollars.” The deed further stipulated that the “said premises shall be used, kept, maintained, and disposed of as a place of Divine Worship for the use of the Ministry and Membership of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.”
As a first step, the Founding Fathers constructed a little one-room building near the spot where the Seaboard Methodist Church parsonage now stands. Built of undressed lumber, hewn by hand, the little building was heated by two stoves—one at each end of the structure.
J. R. Stephenson, one of Seaboard's highly respected senior citizens, recalls that he made his first “public” appearance in a Thanksgiving program presented by Cary Parker, an early Seaboard school teacher, in this little one-room building.
Mr. Stephenson also points out that the movement for a place of worship in Seaboard actually came from a community Sunday School, organized by Mrs. Cordie Hardee, and attended by both Methodists and Baptists. Mrs. Hardee's husband was the Seaboard Railroad ticket agent, and Mrs. Hardee held Sunday School in the railroad station where she taught Bible stories to the children.
Mr. Stephenson, a Baptist, says this little Sunday School in the railroad station marked the birth of the fine cooperation which has always existed between our two great Churches—the Methodist and the Baptist.
Later, what is known as the first Seaboard Methodist Church was built and dedicated on 3rd Sunday in July, 1885. It served as the place of worship until 1922, when it was torn down and
moved to make way for the second Church. The lumber was bought by J. L. Harris who used it to build a barn on his farm near Seaboard. The barn still stands on the farm now owned by Reid Vick Harris.The Church Becomes Part of the North Carolina
Seaboard Methodist Church was first part of the Virginia Conference under the Northampton Circuit and the Murfreesboro District. A hard six-year struggle on the part of the Northampton Circuit and the North Carolina Annual Conference finally brought the Seaboard Methodist Church into the North Carolina Annual Conference in 1890.
The struggle started in 1884 at the 48th session of the North Carolina Annual Conference, when the Conference formed the Garysburg Circuit to include the following churches: Seaboard, Pleasant Grove, Garysburg, Oak Grove and Shiloh.
January, 1886, Church Conference Records reveal a meeting held at Seaboard and attended by all Garysburg Circuit Stewards: J. W. Grant and N. Grant from Shiloh or Oak Grove; W. F. Grubbs, Seaboard; Wm. H. Collins; P. S. Norwood and B. E. Rook, Shiloh or Oak Grove; Wm. H. Ivey, Pleasant Grove; and Dr. A. J. Ellis, Garysburg.
The reluctance of the Virginia Annual Conference to yield its North Carolina territory to the North Carolina Annual Conference is shown by an emphatic motion made by the Rev. William Grant in 1889 at the North Carolina Annual Conference. “All North Carolina Territory Embodied in Other Conferences To Be Transferred to The North Carolina Conference”—so stated the motion.
A strong petition was sent to the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, scheduled to meet in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1890.
The North Carolina Annual Conference Journal of 1889 contains the record of this petition on page 48. F. L. Reid introduced the following resolution, which was read and adopted: “Resolved, that if the General Conference, to meet in St. Louis next May, after getting all the facts in reference to the matter, should see proper to transfer the territory without our state now embraced in the Virginia and Holston Conferences, either or both sections, we will most heartly and cordially welcome both the ministry and membership in these sections to the Conference to be formed in North Carolina.”
F. L. Reid
John R. Brooks
The petitions and motions of the North Carolina Annual Conference brought about the desired action on the part of the General Conference. In late 1890, Seaboard Methodist Church came into the North Carolina Annual Conference through the Warrenton District and the Garysburg Circuit. The Warrenton District at this period had only 8 parsonages, 13 charges, and 53 churches.
The 1890 action of the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, also strengthened the growth of Methodism throughout North Carolina. The 1900 Journal of the North Carolina Annual Conference Session reports its origin and expansion on page 96.
The North Carolina Conference was set off from the Virginia Conference in February 1837. In 1850, and again in 1870, North Carolina territory in the South Carolina Conference was transferred to this Conference. In 1890, North Carolina territory in the Holston Conference and in the Virginia Conference, except that beyond the Chowan River, was transferred to the North Carolina Conference, and the Conference was divided into the North Carolina and Western North Carolina Conferences. In 1894, the remaining N. C. territory in the Virginia Conference
was transferred to the North Carolina Conference. So now the two Conferences embrace the whole of North Carolina.
Since 1890, the Seaboard Church has experienced many re-organizational changes. In 1921, by order of the North Carolina Annual Conference, the Warrenton District was changed to the WELDON DISTRICT. In 1924, the Seaboard Circuit was formed from the Garysburg Circuit including the following churches: Seaboard, Pleasant Grove (taken from the Northampton Circuit); Sharon (taken from the Conway Circuit); and Concord (taken from the Garysburg Circuit). In 1931, the Rocky Mount District was formed by a major realignment of District boundaries when the number of Districts was decreased from nine to seven. The Seaboard Circuit was a part of this District.
Today, 1958, Seaboard Methodist Church is in the North Carolina Annual Conference, Rocky Mount District, Seaboard Circuit, with the following churches on circuit: Seaboard, Pleasant Grove, Sharon and Concord.The Church Moves Ahead Quickly
By 1890, the Founding Fathers had brought a new church building into being, and the Seaboard Methodist Church was moving ahead toward spiritual strength through an active and dedicated membership.
There were many other first steps taken by 1890. Rev. C. E. Hobday was the first minister. J. B. Farmer was the first Sunday School Superintendent, 1885; A. J. Millar, the first Sunday School teacher. The Board of Trustees elected A. B. Daughtrey, first Secretary and appointed C. W. Rose as the first sexton.
On April 1, 1888, Church Conference Records show a Sunday School with 68 “scholars.” In 1889, W. F. Grubbs
was elected as the first Seaboard delegate to the North Carolina annual conference.
Seaboard Methodist Church members were also subscribing to the North Carolina Christian Advocate to keep themselves informed on the state-wide progress of the Methodist Church. The North Carolina Annual Conference was exhorting pastors to keep good and permanent records in their churches. Young Seaboard Methodists were joining the Rosebud Missionary Society, a Children's Missionary program, designed to help them learn about the need to help the heathen in foreign lands. They were also reading “Our Little People,” a four-page leaflet containing interesting stories and Bible lessons.Problems Facing The Church—1880 - 1922
Many problems faced the first Seaboard Methodist Church just as are faced by all new church congregations. Moneyraising, “back-sliders” and disputes among members constituted the most serious headaches. All of these difficulties were surmounted, however, as they usually are when Christians work together.
Interesting side-lights on these problems were culled by Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine from old church records.
In 1908, the church Stewards appointed a Committee on Church Assessments composed of W. R. Vick, Dr. M. R. Stephenson, and R. W. Edwards. Here are some of the assessments for that time: Dr. M. R. Stephenson—$25.00; R. W. Edwards—$25.00; J. G. L. Crocker—$25.00; W. R. Vick—$20.00; W. T. Norvell—$10.00; Luke Harris—$10.00; W. T. Jones—$6.00; A. K. Harris—$5.00; Mrs. Nettie D. Crocker—$5.00; Mrs. Nannie Stephenson—$5.00; Mrs. Aggie Edwards—$5.00; Mrs. Lucy Leake—$4.00; Mrs. Rosa Norvell—$3.00; Mrs. Alice Darden—$2.00; Mrs. Bettie Pruden—$2.00; and children were assessed 25c to 75c.
On February 11, 1900, Rev. G. W. Fisher, pastor, reported that the question of parsonage furniture for the Garysburg circuit was brought up and the Seaboard Church was asked to contribute $12.50.
On March 20, 1887, Rev. T. O. Edwards, pastor, reported that the amount paid for the pastor's salary for the previous quarter amounted to $21.75. Sunday School money received during that same period was $11.34.
On April 14, 1889, Rev. T. O. Edwards, pastor, reported that Bro. W. F. Grubbs and Bro. Frank Reese were appointed to inquire into the absence of several members and into the “wrong-doing” of others. Later reports revealed that the “wrong-doing” members had “acknowledged their sins and repented.” Long-time “absentees” promised “to return to the fold.”
On October 12, 1890, Rev. C. W. Cain reported that the small attendance at Sunday School led him to believe “the church was not fully alive to the importance of this great work.” Rev. Cain also expressed his concern that “the church was not alive to the cause of missions.” And worst of all, out of the $84.00 assessed the Seaboard Church for the Circuit cause, only $19.50 had been raised. Rev. Cain cheerfully laid this “to the short crops of the year 1890.”
In March 1898, Rev. J. D. Pegram, pastor, reported “prayer meetings led by Bro. Thomas Rose for Wednesday and Sunday nights, alternating with the “Missionary Baptists.”
There were “lighter” moments in the first Church history, even though they did not seem so “light” to the participants. In 1901, S. V. Edwards, aged six, fell asleep at the evening Church service. Thinking he was at home at the end of the service, he undressed and slept under the bench the entire night. So frightened was he when he woke up at dawn, he ran home in his underwear, leaving his clothes behind. Stoney
is the only “living” person who ever spent the night in the Church.
In 1907, Ruth Vick, aged 7, was scheduled to recite at the Christmas program. Immediately before the time came, Ruth whispered to her mother that she wouldn't recite unless she got the beautiful doll in Paul Rose's store window. In desperation, Mrs. Vick promised and Ruth said her piece. But the next morning, when she asked for the doll, Mrs. Vick with dire threats told her never to mention “doll” again. And she didn't! She didn't get the doll, either. But the next Christmas Mrs. Vick relented and gave Ruth a beautiful doll. Mary Pruden Vincent earned her first money—$1.00—making the doll's clothes.
During the early pastoral years, John W. Leake encountered a cancelled check made out to “myself.” Knowing that he had not been the “beneficiary” of this check, he was ready to descend on the bank in great fury for making a mistake in his account. Mrs. Leake halted him, however, when she explained that the check was made to M. Y. Self, Pastor.Organ and Choir Music Become An Important Function
Through the years, the Seaboard Methodist Church has been blessed with talented musicians and beautiful voices. The music history of the church from 1800 until 1950 has been compiled by Walter D. Barbee and the Church History Committee is proud to present Mr. Barbee's inspiring story.
“Organ and choir music in Seaboard Methodist Church, since its organization has always held an important position in its religious services. Women of Christian churches with musical training and ability have rendered a memorable service to the church. Miss Johnny Sue Bridgers was leader and organist for the first few years of its history, she having died in 1887 at
the age of 16 years. She was followed by Mrs. Helen Bridgers Joyner, mother of Mrs. Carl Parker, who served as leader and organist for about six or seven years. Under her leadership the young Methodist Church began to attract attention of those who attended. The choir then was small but boasted splendid voices of men and women who loved to sing.
“Upon the death of Mrs. Joyner, the leadership of the choir was given to Mrs. M. R. Stephenson, organist, and under her direction until her death in 1921, a period of 28 years, the church experienced a great interest in church music. Wallen and Buck Jones and their father, W. J., Mrs. Eva McLendon, Mrs. J. H. Ramsay, Mrs. Lottie S. Barbee, Buck Weaver, Paul Edwards, Walter Barbee, Mrs. Garnett Crocker Harris, Estelle Rose, Mrs. Martha B. Maddrey, Mrs. A. K. Harris, and Mrs. Mary Pruden Vincent practiced often on Wednesday nights for special services for next Sunday and their singing was good and pleasant to listen to.
“Then following the death of Mrs. Stephenson, her daughter, Lottie S. Barbee, was made both musical director and organist. She served for 31 or more years, and during these years duets and quartets were greatly enjoyed. Many of the members of the Baptist Church assisted with the music and it was very helpful. Cooperation of the two churches in music and singing added to the quality and volume of the music. The spirit of Baptist folks helping the Methodist and Methodist members helping the Baptist folks greatly improved the music of both churches.
“As a whole, the quality and type of music, both instrumental and vocal, during the years of church history has always been good and notwithstanding the smallness of the groups, the quality of the music has been excellent. Certainly it has helped greatly the Services of Worship of the church. Also the
recently installed chimes in the church have greatly added to the happiness and joy of the entire community with its scheduled services every day, and especially during Christmas and Easter times.”Special Gifts
|Piano 1920||Mrs. Garnette Crocker Harris made this gift during her last illness, 1920.|
|Organ 1921||Mrs. Nannie F. Stephenson made this gift in the last year of her life, 1921.|
Annie Helen Bridgers to Hinton Lee Joyner, May 25, 1886, the Rev. T. O. Edwards officiating.
Maie Vick to George Fenton Crocker, June 20, 1907, the Rev. J. G. Johnson, officiating.
Rhynie Long to William Parker, 1907, the Rev. J. G. Johnson, officiating.
Lottie Stephenson to Walter Dorsey Barbee, July 5, 1916, the Rev. M. Y. Self, officiating.Pastors—1880 - 1922
Based on November appointments at Annual Conference:
Rev. C. E. Hobday, 1880, 1881, 1882
Rev. T. J. Bayton, 1883, 1884, 1885
Rev. T. O. Edwards, 1886, 1887, 1888
Rev. C. W. Cain, 1889, 1890
Rev. T. J. Dailey, 1891, 1892
Rev. Z. T. Harrison, 1893
Rev. J. R. Tillery, 1894, 1895
Rev. J. D. Pegram, 1896, 1897, 1898
Rev. G. W. Fisher, 1899, 1900
Rev. E. W. Fox, 1901, 1902
Rev. J. G. Johnson, 1903, 1904, 1905, 1906
Rev. D. L. Earnhardt, 1907, 1908
Rev. E. N. Harrison, 1909, 1910, 1911
Rev. M. Y. Self, 1912, 1913, 1914, 1915
Rev. R. W. Bailey, 1916, 1917, 1918
Rev. William Towe, 1919, 1920, 1921, 1922IN MEMORIAM
During the years of the First Seaboard Methodist Church, 1880-1922, the following faithful and loyal members passed on to their great reward:
|Johnny Sue Bridgers||1888|
|J. G. L. Crocker||1920|
|Sallie A. Farmer||1888|
|Mrs. Annie Capel Bennett Gay||1918|
|W. F. Grubbs||1906|
|Laura E. Grubbs||1889|
|Minnie Davis Harris||1910|
|Garnette Crocker Harris||1920|
|Helen Bridgers Joyner||1894|
|Lemuel Asbury Joyner||1908|
|William T. Jones||1922|
|Robert H. Long||1920|
|W. T. Norvell||1917|
|Nannie Futrell Stephenson||1921|
|Henry E. Bridgers||Nettie D. Crocker||Bessie Sue Edwards|
|Johnnie Sue Bridgers||Hopie G. Cuthrell||R. W. Edwards|
|Rupert R. Bridgers||Minnie W. Cuthrell||J. B. Farmer|
|Onelia E. Carr||A. B. Daughtry||Sally A. Farmer|
|Mrs. S. W. T. Chitty||Jeanette J. Daughtry||W. J. Fisher|
|Charles Clarke||Helen M. Duke||Rosa Fisher|
|Hugh Crocker||James W. Duke||Mrs. Annie Gay|
|J. G. L. Crocker||Aggie Edwards||Laura E. Grubbs|
|W. F. Grubbs||Martha E. Maddrey||Roxie A. Rose|
|Thomas R. Hargrove||John A. Millar||Thomas B. Rose|
|Henry Hart||Mary L. Moore||Gertrude Skiles|
|William Randolph Hart||Nettie V. Moore||Bettie E. Stephenson|
|Willie T. Jones||Leila Parks||Dr. M. R. Stephenson|
|Jos. W. Jordan||Fannie E. Pete||James T. Stephenson|
|Nannie B. Jordan||E. N. Peterson||William T. Stephenson|
|Mrs. A. Helen Joyner||Fanny A. Price||Mary Ann Taylor|
|Andrew J. Joyner||Mrs. Betty Pruden||T. S. Taylor|
|Bettie A. Joyner||James A. Ramsay||Eliza Warrick|
|A. E. Joyner||John T. Ramsay||Ebenezer Wheeler|
|H. L. Joyner||Joseph Mark Ramsay||Hezekiah Wheeler|
|Pauline M. Joyner||F. M. Reese||Jessie Wheeler|
|J. Paul Leightner||Sarah John Reese||Edwin W. Woodroof|
|Jane C. Lathem||Andrew E. Rose||Mamie Wright|
|Sarah F. Lynn||C. W. Rose|
|J. H. Bradley||R. W. Edwards||William Jones|
|Mary E. Bradley||Stonewall Vick Edwards||W. T. Jones|
|Henry E. Bridgers||W. Grady Edwards||A. J. Jordan|
|Bernard L. Crocker||Eva May Foster||Florence W. Leake|
|Dean S. Crocker||Fannie Foster||Lucy Leake|
|Elmo Crocker||Annie Gay||Major G. Little|
|Garnette E. Crocker||Lillian Gay||Lucille Liles|
|Hugh Crocker||Thomas R. Hargrove||Roxie Long|
|J. G. L. Crocker||A. K. Harris||Alonza B. Martin|
|Lloyd Crocker||B. F. Harris||A. Paul Martin|
|Maie Vick Crocker||Emma F. Harris||Charles C. Martin|
|Nettie D. Crocker||J. Luke Harris||Essie Martin|
|Hopie G. Cuthrell||Julia Harris||Mary E. Martin|
|Alice Darden||Mattie Cecil Harris||S. M. Martin|
|Aggie O. Edwards||Zena Alice Harris||Annie Cleo Norvell|
|Agnes Edwards||Mrs. E. W. Jones||Pearl Norvell|
|M. Lucille Edwards||Lillian Harvey Jones||Rosa Norvell|
|W. Parham Edwards||Nannie R. Jones||Willie Norvell|
|Peter B. Edwards||Waldie Jones||W. T. Norvell|
|Bettie Pruden||Dr. M. R. Stephenson||Jesse B. Wheeler|
|Mary Pruden||Matt R. Stephenson||George T. Worrell|
|Mildred Pruden||Nannie B. Stephenson||Annie W. Vick|
|Mrs. J. H. Ramsay||William T. Stephenson||Charles B. Vick|
|Helen Spencer||Horace Steward||Ruth Vick|
|Lottie Stephenson||J. R. Ware||W. R. Vick|
|Mrs. J. R. Ware|
ON the 2nd day of May, 1922, the Trustees of the Seaboard Methodist Church—R. W. Edwards, M. R. Stephenson, G. F. Crocker, and W. R. Vick—for the sum of one dollar received a second deed for the “lot of land upon which the Seaboard M. E. Church, South now is located.” This deed was signed by John T. Ramsay and Annie Ramsay, his wife; Jos. H. Ramsay and Lillian Ramsay, his wife; and W. L. Harris and Bettie P. Harris, his wife. These were the heirs-at-law of the signers of the first deed in 1881, Joseph M. Phillips, Arnetta E. Ramsay and John Ramsay. Such a transaction was necessary because the first Church was to be torn down and replaced with a new one.Building Our New Church
G. F. Crocker was appointed Chairman of the Building Committee for the new Church. At the first meeting of the Building Committee, $12,070 was pledged. The following members made the dream of a new Church an actuality:
|Barbee, Lottie S.||$ 500||Grubbs, D. G.||750|
|Crocker, Dean S.||225||Harris, A. K.||300|
|Crocker, Elmo||200||Harris, J. L.||500|
|Crocker, G. F.||600||Harris, S. S.||100|
|Crocker, Minnie||250||Hubbard, A. H.||50|
|Crocker, Nettie D.||500||Jones, W. J.||150|
|Cuthrell, J. E.||25||Jones, W. W.||250|
|Edwards, R. W. and Sons||2500||Leake, J. W.||600|
|Ford, A. L.||100||Little, Major||120|
|Maddrey, H. C.||500||Stephenson, Maggie||200|
|Parker, C. P.||750||Stephenson, M. R.||2000|
|Pruden, Bettie I.||50||Vick, W. R.||500|
The total cost of the new Church was $18,000, all of which was raised by pledges. It was a beautiful Church whose members were proud upon its completion in the early 20's. In this day of inflation, the cost of such a Church building would be around $75,000 or more.
The lovely church was not dedicated until August 25, 1940. Bishop Clare Purcell, the presiding bishop, conducted the impressive dedicatory ceremony. The musical program was arranged by Mrs. Lottie S. Barbee. Rev. J. B. Hurley was pastor in charge at that time.Memorials and Gifts—1922 - 1950
|Memorials||In Memory of||Donor|
|Window||Nannie F. Stephenson||Her husband, Dr. M. R. Stephenson|
|Window||W. F. Grubbs||His son, D. G. Grubbs|
|Window||J. G. L. Crocker||His wife, Nettie D. Crocker and his sons|
|Pulpit Bible||Laura E. Grubbs||Her son, D. G. Grubbs|
|Offering Plate||W. G. Edwards||His wife, Bernice Clark Edwards|
|Offering Plate||Thomas Russell Everett, Jr.||His mother, Ruth Vick O'Brien|
|Cement Cap on Entrance Steps||W. R. Vick||His daughter, Maie Vick Crocker|
|Cement Cap on Entrance Steps||Nettie D. Crocker||Her son, G. F. Crocker|
|Automatic Chimes Player||Aggie Vick Edwards||Her son, S. V. Edwards|
|Automatic Chimes Player||Garnette Crocker Harris||Her son, George W. Harris|
|Automatic Chimes Player||Zena Vick Harris||Her son, Reid V. Harris|
REV. C. M. MITCHELL, Pastor since June 1958, with Mrs. Mitchell and daughter, Mary Ann, in front of the Annex Building.
LOTTIE STEPHENSON BARBEE CLASS
- FIRST ROW (LEFT TO RIGHT): Lucy L. Spaine, Elizabeth B. Bullock, Cleo White, Jeanette Vick, Jo Parker, Elizabeth B. Howell, Annie M. Kee, Willie P. Matthews, Florence L. Crocker, Frances R. Magee, Lillian B. Ramsay, Mabel Ramsay, Ernestine L. Edwards, Hazel J. Edwards. SECOND ROW: Mary Frances Draper, Bickley Bullock, Shirley Warrick Taylor, Louise W. Harris, Alice M. Long, Mary T. Mumford, Mildred Ford, Bertha J. Parker, Margaret Harris Leake, Vivian Mitchell, Elsie Edwards. THIRD ROW: Helen Irvin, Annie T. Bass, Martha B. Maddrey.
|Pulpit Lamp||Lottie Stephenson Barbee|
|1. Intermediate Class (Mrs. Frances Draper, Teacher)|
|Six Rolls of Music for Automatic Chimes Player||2. The late Mr. and Mrs. G. F. Crocker|
|3. Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Stephenson|
|4. Men's Bible Class|
In 1924, the Seaboard Circuit was formed, bringing in Seaboard and Concord from the Garysburg Circuit, Pleasant Grove from the Northampton Circuit, and Sharon from the Conway Circuit.
Formerly, pastors serving the Seaboard Church lived in the parsonage located in Garysburg. Now it became necessary, with the organization of the Seaboard Circuit, to build a parsonage in Seaboard. The four churches of the Seaboard Circuit—Concord, Pleasant Grove, Seaboard and Sharon—assumed the financial responsibility. Started in 1923, the parsonage was completed in 1925, at a cost of $6,000. The first pastor to live in it was one of the best beloved of all our pastors, Rev. Frank Culbreth, who came in 1924.Our Pastors—1922-1950
During these years, many able pastors served our Church and helped contribute to its spiritual growth and physical expansion. Rev. William Towe was pastor when the second Church deed was signed on May 2, 1922. Among other pastors were: Rev. Frank Culbreth; Rev. R. R. Grant; Rev. L. A. Watts with five years of service, the longest service in our Church history; Rev. W. G. Farrar; Rev. J. B. Hurley; Rev.
J. D. Robinson, and Rev. J. P. Pegg. In the Appendix of this book will be found the names and years of service of all the pastors of this era.Religious Plays and Pageants
During the years 1932 through 1936 the Church, under the direction of Rev. L. A. Watts, inaugurated a series of religious plays and pageants. Where Sunday evening services were formerly attended only by the faithful few, the religious plays drew a “packed” house. Sometimes these religious dramatizations were jointly sponsored by both the Methodist and the Baptist Churches and presented in the Seaboard High School auditorium. Substantial collections were “split” between the two churches.
In order to make these religious plays look “authentic,” the director borrowed numerous unusual articles. A. K. Harris, local undertaker, loaned his green funeral carpet for “grass” effects. Bailey Maddrey was generous with the “Palms” that decorated his drugstore. Oriental scenes were made realistic with the aid of the neighbors’ lattices, bird baths and stone seats. Religious costumes were devised from bed-sheets and the congregation's best satin bed-spreads.
In this manner, Biblical plays, written by Bernice Kelly Harris, and pageants for special occasions brought alive the famous persons and events of Biblical times. Teachers, merchants, the Methodist pastor, farmers and housewives put aside their regular duties and became actors and actresses of great ability.Interesting Notes From Church Records
Meager though are Church records are, Lucy Leake Spaine came up with some interesting notes about this period of Church history, 1922-1950.
In 1925, the District Conference appointed the following to serve on important Church committees:
|Entertainment:||J. L. Harris, Dean S. Crocker and S. V. Edwards|
|Arrangements:||Mrs. Lottie S. Barbee and Mrs. Minnie Crocker|
|Parsonage:||Mrs. Bertha Parker, Mrs. Bernice C. Edwards, J. L. Harris|
|Ushers:||Bruce Jones and James Harris|
In 1929, a Church record shows the following persons served the Church:
|D. S. Crocker, Secretary of Quarterly Conference|
|Stewards:||R. W. Edwards, A. K. Harris, W. J. Jones, D. S. Crocker and J. H. Ramsay|
|Trustees:||G. F. Crocker and W. R. Vick|
|Parsonage Trustees:||J. L. Harris, H. C. Maddrey, R. W. Edwards, G. F. Crocker|
In 1930, the first central heating plant was installed in the Church. Formerly, faithful Church members, bundled in heavy suits and coats, huddled around coal stoves when winter set in. With the new heating plant installed, Church attendance increased during the winter months and the women members were able to display their “Sunday” dresses.
In 1932, Rev. R. R. Grant, pastor, organized the first Epworth League. Young people quickly joined in the League's spiritual and social activities.
The 1932 Stewards were: R. W. Edwards, A. K. Harris, J. H. Ramsay, and Mrs. Lottie S. Barbee.
The year 1940 was a busy one. The Church dedication was being planned for August. But there was no carpet on the floor.
All during the year, the women worked furiously to raise the money to buy the carpet. They sold hot dogs, cakes and pies. They held rummage sales of all kinds.
To the wonder of all, the women raised enough funds to buy the “longed-for” carpet. It arrived on the eve of the Church dedication. But undaunted, the women worked through the night before the Church dedication Sunday, putting down their beautiful new carpet on the floor of the aisles and in the pulpit and choir loft. Husbands and sons assisted them, so tough was the job.
Sunday dawn found the Church in readiness for the great event. And the weary yet happy “carpet-layers” were proudly on hand for the dedication, though bleary-eyed and suffering from headaches as well as backaches.
Another event of significance in 1940 was the introduction of “The Upper Room,” a Church publication. Copies were ordered for the entire membership and this little pamphlet brought joy and comfort to many.
Records for 1940-1941 show the following leaders:
Stewards: R. W. Edwards, J. H. Ramsay, A. K. Harris and Dr. John W. Parker, Jr.
Trustees: G. F. Crocker, A. K. Harris and R. W. Edwards
Sunday School Superintendent: A. L. Ford
Golden Cross Chairman: Dr. John W. Parker, Jr.
Then came the World War II years. With 22 young men in service, the women of the Church gave of their time to Red Cross work, making bandages, knitting sweaters and socks. Women also made it their business to see that the young men in the Navy, Air Force and Army received newsy, cheerful letters from their Church.
The Bible Reading plan was also started during the war years and the members responded well.
Though war news and war activities consumed most of the members’ time and thought, they raised funds to paint the inside of the parsonage in 1943 and to add needed furnishings.
By 1946, the young men were returning home from World War II and the Church took on new life and new activities. The Unified Budget system was organized by the pastor, Rev. J. D. Robinson, 1946. The Young Men's Bible Class was formed in 1946, and in 1947 its members built an out-door fireplace on the Church grounds.
In 1951, S. V. Edwards, who had served so long and so faithfully as Sunday School Superintendent, retired from active service. Church members reluctantly accepted his resignation but—“Stoney” said: “It's time for younger men and women to assume their Church responsibilities.”
It was, therefore, in 1951, that “the old order yielded, making way for the new.” And a young war veteran, Reid Vick Harris, became Sunday School Superintendent. He served ably and faithfully until 1957 when illness forced him to retire.In Memoriam
|Mrs. Hattie P. Rose||1923||Miss Edna I. Long||1936|
|Dr. M. R. Stephenson||1924||Herbert W. Long||1937|
|Mrs. Zena Vick Harris||1925||Mrs. Mattie Darden Harris||1940|
|John W. Leake||1926||Herod H. Duke||1941|
|Mrs. Mollie E. Bradley||1927||Thos. R. Everett, Jr.||1941|
|G. T. Worrell||1929||Mrs. Pauline Joyner Hart||1943|
|Mrs. Bettie F. Pruden||1930||J. L. Harris||1945|
|Matt R. Stephenson, Jr.||1931||J. H. Ramsay||1945|
|Mrs. Annie Ford||1931||Edward V. Stephenson||1945|
|D. S. Crocker||1931||Mrs. Mattie L. Joyner||1946|
|Mrs. Nettie F. Crocker||1933||W. G. Edwards||1946|
|Mrs. Verda Ivey Long||1933||James W. Rose||1946|
|W. R. Vick||1934||Mrs. E. W. Dixon||1950|
|James R. Jones||1934||A. Linwood Ford||1950|
|Mrs. Rosa T. Norvell||1936||Robert E. Vick||1950|
|Elmo Crocker||1936||A. K. Harris||1950|
As mid-century approached, the Church leadership of the Twenties, Thirties and Forties yielded to a younger generation. Young men who served in World War II had returned home, fired with enthusiasm to do something to help improve their Church and community as well. Furthermore, many were already married or soon to marry. And new families were on their way. Young mothers quickly realized the value of a good Sunday School and they, too, took on their duties as responsible leaders.Church Renovation Starts In 1949
In 1949, the first meeting to discuss the Church renovation program was held in the office of Dr. John W. Parker, Jr. The goal of $7500 was set. Some said this amount of money could never be raised. But the Young Men's Class, organized in 1946, and eager to make a substantial contribution, rallied behind the program. Surprisingly, $10,000 was raised, with most members contributing according to their financial ability.The Building Committee
Reid Vick Harris was elected Chairman of the Building Committee. With the full support of Rev. J. P. Pegg, pastor, the Building program made a fast start. Oldsters could scarcely believe that the “children” of yester-years were the able, hardworking young leaders of today.
The necessary renovations were done first. But the Committee always had in the back of its mind the purchase of an organ, if only enough money was forthcoming.
The following things were done immediately:
|Painting Church Inside and Outside||985.33|
|Sheet Metal Work||770.96|
|New Light Fixtures||418.04|
After the above improvements were made and paid for, the Committee was elated to find there was enough money in the building fund to purchase an electric Organ and Tubular Chimes. Mrs. Lottie S. Barbee was appointed to select an organ. She made trips to various organ companies and decided on a Wurlitzer. The cost of organ and chimes amounted to $3887.19.New Choir, Robes, Rehearsals
In 1950, the church lost the faithful service of Mrs. Lottie S. Barbee as organist and choir director after 31 years of loyal service. Special recognition was given her by the Pastor, Rev. J. P. Pegg. Due to Mrs. Barbee's resignation, Miss Etheleen Carr, local public school music teacher, offered her services as organist and pianist. Under the supervision of Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass, a new choir was organized and regular rehearsals were held.
Much enthusiasm was shown when the church offered to buy choir robes for the members. Material was bought and the 18 robes were made by Mrs. Margaret Simon in Weldon. After her marriage in 1951 to Walter Rowell, Mrs. Etheleen Carr Rowell gave up her position as organist and joined Pleasant Grove Church with her husband. The church was really at a loss to know where to find someone to take her place. Mrs.
Annie Taylor Bass was called on to fill in until some other arrangement could be made. Mrs. Bass is still today's organist and pianist, rendering effective service for both the Sunday School and the Service of Worship.
Regular rehearsals have been discontinued but on special occasions at Christmas, Easter, etc., the choir rehearses and brings special music at the Service of Worship. Due to the lack of trained voices in the Methodist Choir, members of the Seaboard Baptist Choir and the Pleasant Grove Methodist Choir assist in rendering special music at revival services and on other special occasions.
Special recognition should go to Mrs. Lillian B. Ramsay for her many years of faithful service in the choir. Her beautiful alto voice can be heard in the choir every Sunday when she can attend. She is always the first to come when practice is announced. Members of the choir now are: Mrs. Lillian B. Ramsay, Mrs. Elizabeth B. Bullock, Mrs. Mary Taylor Mumford, Mrs. Cleo M. White, Mrs. Mable Hughes, Ruby Little, Rachel Little, Linda White, Judy Irvin, James T. Edwards, J. P. Spencer, Richard Hughes, Tom Flythe and W. J. Jones. Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass is both organist and choir director.Memorials
A Brass Cross was given by Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Stephenson in 1958 in memory of their son, Edward Vassar Stephenson, who lost his life in World War II.
Brass candle sticks were given in 1958 by Mrs. W. G. Edwards in memory of Harry Samuel Clark, her brother, who came to Seaboard in 1948 to make his home with her. He was a member of the Weldon Methodist Church but after coming here, he was a faithful worker in this church as long as his health permitted.
A Sterling Silver Baptismal Bowl was given by Mrs. Bertha Parker in 1958 in memory of her husband, Dr. C. P. Parker.
A roll of sacred music was given by Walter D. Barbee and wife, Katherine, in memory of Lottie Stephenson Barbee.Pastors
Rev. J. P. Pegg led the Church into mid-century. In 1952, a young and dedicated pastor, Rev. B. F. Musser, came in for a four-year term. He worked untiringly with the young leaders and encouraged the oldsters to support their efforts.
Rev. R. S. Gibson served in 1956 and 1957 during the Annex building program. As the Church now dedicates its handsome new Educational Annex, Rev. C. Manes Mitchell is serving his first year.Church Weddings—1940 - 1958
Edith Langston Warrick to Benjamin Council Bunn, May 31, 1940, by the Rev. J. B. Hurley.
Nancy Hudson Barbee to William Henry Weed Crawford II, December 21, 1940, by the Rev. L. A. Watts.
Marie Duke to Carl Langford Bradshaw, Sept. 1, 1941, by the Rev. J. B. Hurley.
Ellen Carlton Maddrey to Charles Walker Davis, Jr., June 7, 1947, by the Rev. L. A. Watts.
Jean Crocker Maddrey to Hugh Hayes Wilson, Jr., December 20, 1947, by the Rev. L. A. Watts.
Betty Drake Howell to James Taylor Edwards, September 11, 1948, by the Rev. J. P. Pegg.
Virginia Drake Maddrey to James Edward Brooks, Jr., October 25, 1952, by the Rev. Earl Edwards.
Joyce Ann Burton to Jeffe Bernard Myers, Jr., December 20, 1954, by the Rev. B. F. Musser.
The period from 1950 to 1958 saw perhaps the greatest number of improvements in our Church and parsonage since the present building was completed. The change over from hot-water heat to an economical quick-recovery hot-air system for the church was done on the advice of Ivan White. The Sunday School class rooms were painted, decorated and the floors finished. The bathrooms, recreation room, and kitchen were tiled, and a bulletin board, blackboards and furniture purchased.
The parsonage came in for a share of improvements also. The dining room and living room were painted, decorated and carpeted. The roof and exterior walls were painted and a half bath completed downstairs. A central heating system was also installed and a cabinet sink added to the kitchen.
This work was financed by pledges and gifts from members. A generous gift was bequeathed to the church in the will of the beloved Mrs. Maie Vick Crocker and $1,000.00 was donated by the Duke Endowment Fund.
The church has gone forward in the interest of Methodism as well as in Church and parsonage improvements. In January, 1956, six members of the Seaboard Circuit presented a review of the book, “High Hours of Methodism in Town and Country”, before the congregations of Sharon, Pleasant Grove and Seaboard Methodist Churches. They were: Mrs. Frances Ramsay Magee, Mrs. P. A. Bullock, Millard Carpenter, Jr., Mrs. John W. Boone, Sr., Mrs. Mary Frances Stephenson Draper, and L. W. Piland.
The Woman's Society of Christian Service has also participated in study courses and other activities in Conference, Circuit and Church. Each year Woman's Society of Christian Service members write wonderful letters of encouragement and
appreciation to students and other young people away from home. Their letters, cards, flowers, gifts and visits keep our Methodist Church alive in the hearts and homes of the community.Officers of the Seaboard
As we look at the names of the Church officers today—1958—we find the names of families who served our Church in its early years: Harris, Edwards, Ramsay, Spencer, Parker, Stephenson. Other names represent families who later moved into our community and became active leaders in our Church: Bullock, White, Draper, Long, Magee.Organizational Changes in 1952
In 1952, the General Conference of the Methodist Church made changes in the organization of the local churches. The Quarterly Conference remains the basic body of control that it has been since the early days of Methodism. But there is no longer a “Board of Stewards” in the Church. The Stewards are now a part of the “Official Board” which is the administrative body of the local church. The Official Board provides broader representation as well as more definite division of responsibility. The Official Board of the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1958 is as follows:
Pastor: Rev. C. Maness Mitchell.
Trustees: George W. Harris until 1959; Reid Vick Harris until 1960; Dr. John W. Parker, Jr. until 1960; and J. G. Long until 1961.
Stewards: Mrs. P. A. Bullock, James E. Edwards, R. W. Edwards, Jr., S. V. Edwards, Reid Vick Harris, J. M. Magee, Mrs. Bertha Parker, Dr. John W. Parker, Jr., Morrison Ramsay, J. P. Spencer, Jr., and Ivan B. White.
Ex-Officio Stewards: The following are ex-officio Stewards by virtue of their office in the Church:
—Church Lay Leader: B. R. Bullock
—Church School Superintendent: T. J. Draper
—Chairman of the Commission on Membership and Evangelism: Mrs. T. J. Draper
—Chairman of the Commission on Education: Mrs. B. R. Bullock
—Chairman of the Commission on Missions: Morrison Ramsay
—Chairman of the Commission on Stewardship and Finance: S. V. Edwards
—President of the Woman's Society of Christian Service: Mrs. J. H. Ramsay
—The Church Treasurer: S. V. EdwardsCOMMISSION ON MEMBERSHIP AND EVANGELISM
Mrs. T. J. Draper, Chairman
Mrs. J. H. Ramsay
J. P. Spencer
C. M. Mitchell, Pastor
B. R. Bullock, Church Lay Leader
Mrs. P. A. Bullock, Secretary of Spiritual Life of the Woman's Society of Christian Service
Morrison Ramsay, Chairman of Commission on Missions
T. J. Draper, Church-School SuperintendentCOMMISSION ON EDUCATION
Mrs. B. R. Bullock, Chairman
T. J. Draper, Church-School Superintendent
Tom Flythe, Membership Cultivation Superintendent
Mrs. B. R. Bullock, Superintendent of Children's Division
Mrs. T. J. Draper, Superintendent of Youth Division
R. W. Edwards, Jr., Superintendent of Adult Division
C. M. Mitchell, Pastor
B. R. Bullock, Church Lay Leader
Stanley Crocker, Church-School Secretary
Mrs. W. P. Edwards, Jr.
Mrs. Ivan White
Mrs. Andrew TaylorCOMMISSION ON MISSIONS
Morrison Ramsay, Chairman
I. B. White
Mrs. C. G. Matthews
C. M. Mitchell, Pastor
B. R. Bullock, Church Lay Leader
T. J. Draper, Church-School Superintendent
Mrs. B. R. Bullock, Secretary of Missionary Education of the Woman's Society of Christian ServiceCOMMISSION ON STEWARDSHIP AND FINANCE
S. V. Edwards, Chairman
I. B. White
Mrs. J. H. Ramsay
C. M. Mitchell, Pastor
B. R. Bullock, Church Lay Leader
Morrison Ramsay, Chairman of Commission on Missions
Mrs. Aggie Vick Edwards—1951
Mrs. Mary Lucy Taylor Leake—1952
G. Fenton Crocker—1954
R. W. Edwards—1954
Mrs. Maie Vick Crocker—1955
C. Bruck Vick—1956
Mrs. Lottie Stephenson Barbee—1956
Hinton L. Joyner—1958
Mrs. Roy C. Worrell—1958
W. W. Jones—1958
|Mrs. Russell L. Bass||Sidney Stuart Harris, Jr.|
|Carl Bradshaw||Reid V. Harris|
|Mrs. Carl Bradshaw||Mrs. Reid V. Harris|
|Bonnie Bradshaw||Reid V. Harris, II|
|Wayne Butler||Carl Warmack Harris|
|Mrs. Nellie Bryant||Mrs. Lloyd Howell|
|B. Reese Bullock||Richard Hughes|
|Mrs. B. Reese Bullock||Mrs. Richard Hughes|
|Mrs. P. A. Bullock||Harvey Irvin|
|Mrs. Ezelle Carstarphen||Mrs. Harvey Irvin|
|Mrs. Florence Crocker||Judy Irvin|
|Dean Stanley Crocker, Jr.||Claire Irvin|
|Vaughan Crocker||Mrs. W. W. Jones|
|Thomas J. Draper||W. J. Jones|
|Mrs. Thomas J. Draper||J. J. Jones|
|Mrs. Maggie P. Duke||Mrs. Annie Kee|
|Floyd Wesley Edwards||Joan May Kirkland|
|S. V. Edwards||Mrs. Margaret Harris Leake|
|James Taylor Edwards||Major Little|
|Mrs. James Taylor Edwards||Mrs. Major Little|
|Mrs. W. Grady Edwards||Hilton Little|
|W. Parham Edwards, Jr.||J. T. Little|
|R. W. Edwards, Jr.||Mrs. Janie Little Hux|
|Mrs. R. W. Edwards, Jr.||Rachel Little|
|Willis Parham Edwards, Sr.||Ruby Little|
|Mrs. W. Parham Edwards, Sr.||Carlton Little|
|Mrs. Willis Parham Edwards, Jr.||Joseph B. Long|
|Elwood Ford||Mrs. Alice Millwood Long|
|Thomas Flythe||J. G. Long|
|L. S. Ford||Mrs. Nannie Jones Long|
|Mrs. L. S. Ford||Mrs. J. H. Lewis, Sr.|
|Henrietta Ford||J. H. Lewis, Jr.|
|Henry Ford||H. C. Maddrey|
|Mrs. E. R. Game||Mrs. H. C. Maddrey|
|Mrs. Minnie Crocker Gay||Mrs. Sue Duke Maddrey|
|George W. Harris||Herman Maddrey|
|Mrs. Herman Maddrey||Mrs. Morrison Ramsay|
|Mrs. Thomas W. Moore||Mrs. Richard C. Spaine|
|Patricia Lewis Moore||Mrs. J. P. Spencer|
|Jerry Moody||J. P. Spencer, Jr.|
|Joseph M. Magee||Mrs. E. H. Stephenson|
|Mrs. Joseph M. Magee||J. R. Sewell|
|Joseph M. Magee, Jr.||Mrs. Andrew Taylor|
|Mrs. C. G. Matthews||Dr. C. L. Vick|
|Mrs. C. M. Mitchell||Mrs. C. L. Vick|
|Mrs. Bertha Joyner Parker||Charles Booker Vick|
|Mrs. Ruth Vick O'Brien||June Carolyn Vick|
|Dr. J. W. Parker, Jr.||Mrs. Russell White|
|Mrs. J. W. Parker, Jr.||Ivan B. White|
|Mrs. J. H. Ramsay, Sr.||Mrs. Ivan B. White|
|J. H. Ramsay, Jr.||Linda White|
|Mrs. J. H. Ramsay, Jr.||Ann Carolyn White|
|Morrison Ramsay||Sallie White|
THE Sunday School of the Seaboard Methodist Church had its persistent struggle to keep alive in its early days. It was an uphill fight against “weather,” “apathy” and “small collections.”
On October 12th, 1890, a report was given at the Church Conference that “68 scholars were on roll and had an average attendance of 50% but didn't think that the Church was fully alive to the importance of this grand work.”
Superintendent T. B. Rose reported on February 11, 1900, that the attendance at Sunday School “was not as good as desired; but in some measure due to bad weather.”
The Church records reveal, however, that the Sunday School “survived” its early struggles and went on to become a “healthy” part of the whole Church program. It's true that “weather” and “apathy” have occasionally attacked the members through the years, but inspired leadership and good organization have eventually relieved them of such onsets.Memorable Occasions of the Yester-Years
The oldsters of the Sunday School recall with pleasant memories the annual outing at Ocean View, Virginia. Long before dawn, parents and children arrived at the train station to board the excursion train. Ladened with picnic baskets crammed with chicken, ham, deviled eggs, pickles and cake, happy families made the round-trip to Portsmouth, Virginia, and back at the price of $1.00 for adults and 50 cents for children. Buses delivered the families to Ocean View where they “bathed” in the ocean, rode on the leap-the-dip and ate until they nearly popped. As they boarded the train for the return trip, the men usuallyThe Sunday School 1958 (NAMES OF PERSONS IN PICTURE ON THE FOLLOWING PAGE)
bought a whole bunch of bananas, costing the mere sum of 50 cents, and the “congregation” stuffed on bananas all the way home.
Since the excursion train picked up passengers from several adjacent stations, it consisted of many cars and hundreds of people. On one occasion, the Seaboard congregation was let off some distance from the station. Rain was falling in torrents as the families struggled home with their children. But even such a drenching did nothing to dampen their ardor for the next year's excursion.
Another recreational feature sponsored by the Sunday School, in the days before the automobile, electric lights and movies, consisted of a series of summer-evening lawn parties held on a vacant lot now owned by the Gay boys. Japanese lanterns, hung in the Mimosa trees, cast a soft glow over the young people who came together for an evening of fun. Some couples who met at the parties later married and became residents of the community. Mr. W. J. Jones and Miss Fannie Gay were such a couple.
These lawn parties were similar to the noon-day festivities of the all-day “revivals” held at the country churches. As was usual, tables were heaped with good things to eat and the happy evening passed too quickly for the oldsters and youngsters.
Children's Days and Christmas programs brought the Methodist and Baptist Churches into joint activities. Such occasions were “trying” times to proud parents and church leaders. Special “outfits” were made by mothers who vied with each other in designing costumes for their offspring. Poems were learned. Songs were memorized. And occasionally, some child who couldn‘t carry a tune persisted in singing a solo.
“Jesus Wants Me For a Sunbeam” was the “hit” song for Children's Day, while “Silent Night” dominated Christmas
programs. Many of the bolder youngsters preferred something more sprightly, but they were quickly frowned down.
At one Christmas program, the elders thought it would be a good idea to place the children on home-made benches in front of the altar, since children were the most important people at the program.
The children, therefore, dutifully arrayed themselves on the benches made of new pine boards, right in front of the altar, where smiling parents could observe them.
The smiles, however, were quickly doomed. As each “performer” arose to do his or her number, “rip” went the seat of the boys’ pants and “rip” went the little girls’ frills. All on account of the sticky rosin on the new pine benches. So that marked the end of the “angels” on new pine benches.Sunday School Classes
Sunday School excursions, lawn parties, Children's Days, and Christmas festivities were indeed important features of the early Sunday School programs. But learning Sunday School lessons and giving the correct answers were duties required of young and old. Saturday night was not only “bathing night,” it was also the night when we learned our Sunday School lesson and “recited” the answers to our parents. No “scholar” would dare sit “unlearned” before Mrs. Aggie Edwards who taught the young people for 40 years. “The purpose of Sunday School,” she used to say, “is to learn the Bible.” And woe be unto those who didn't want to learn!Adult Classes
Seaboard Methodist Church has been blessed with many good Sunday School teachers. Early teachers of the Adult Classes were excellent students of the Bible. Among them
were: J. A. Millar, the first teacher; J. G. L. Crocker; W. R. Vick; T. B. Rose; and Dr. M. R. Stephenson.
Later, Adult Class teachers were: G. F. Crocker, Mrs. Martha B. Maddrey, Mrs. Robert E. Vick, Mrs. Ruth Vick O'Brien, and Mrs. P. A. Bullock.
Today three able teachers teach the Lottie Stephenson Women's Class: Mrs. P. A. Bullock, who has taught for 19 years in both the Adult Department and Women's Class; Mrs. C. G. Matthews, for seven years; and Mrs. Joe Magee.
The following highly capable young men teach, by terms of a quarter each, the Men's Class: L. S. Ford, George W. Harris, R. W. Edwards, Jr., James Taylor Edwards, J. P. Spencer, Jr., and B. R. Bullock.
The Men's Bible Class was organized in 1946 by Rev. John D. Robinson, Pastor, who launched the program at a supper in the parsonage. Until then, both men and women constituted the Adult Class.Young People's Class
Mrs. Nellie Moore was the first young people's teacher. Mrs. J. G. L. Crocker came next. Then followed Mrs. Aggie Edwards, who taught for 40 years. Among others who came later were: Mrs. C. P. Parker, Mrs. G. F. Crocker, Edward V. Stephenson, Mrs. Zena Vick Harris, Miss Pauline Edwards, Mrs. D. S. Crocker and Mrs. John W. Parker, Jr. Today's teacher of the Young People's class is Mrs. Thomas J. Draper, with nine years of service.Children's Classes
Among the teachers with long terms of service in the Children's Classes are: Mrs. J. H. Ramsay, seven years; and Mrs. W. D. Barbee, 10 years. When the Children's Division was organized
in 1937, with three classes, Mrs. J. H. Ramsay was Superintendent of the whole division. She was followed by Mrs. C. L. Vick, Mrs. Robert E. Vick, Mrs. B. R. Bullock, and Mrs. I. B. White.
Former teachers are: Jean Maddrey Wilson, Mrs. J. T. Edwards, Mrs. R. W. Edwards, Jr., and Mrs. Harvey Irvin, who has taught for eight years.
Today's children's teachers are: Mrs. W. P. Edwards, Jr., with three years of service; Mrs. I. B. White, with four years; and Mrs. Andrew H. Taylor, with six years of service; and Mrs. B. R. Bullock, with fifteen years of service.
The interest of the teachers in their children is shown by this letter to Mr. and Mrs. J. T. Edwards, from Steve's teacher:
Gumberry, N. C.
October 3, 1958
Dear Jim and Betty:
The words that I would like to say to you just do not seem to come. I have had Steve in my Primary Class for three years now and, my, how short they have been! I have seen him grow from Sunday to Sunday into a fine young man. I can only hope that he has found the pleasure and knowledge with me there that I have found in him. No teacher could possibly say that a child of Primary age has behaved perfectly every Sunday. There were, of course, some Sundays when the solemnity and reverence of the church could not confine his energy. But as the Sundays have progressed, I have seen Steve become increasingly aware of the meanings of our lessons and of the importance of the Church. I know that the future holds many wonderful things for Steve as he continues to grow in the church and in a fine Christian home. We have the privilege of helping our children grow as Jesus grew “. . . in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.” It is my hope and prayer that we, as parents, can assure our children such splendid growth.
We will all miss Steve in our class, but we hope he will be happy in Junior Class.
Shirley W. TaylorSunday School Superintendents
Upon the shoulders of the Sunday School Superintendents falls the responsibility of leadership and organization. Superintendents of the Methodist Sunday School have always been able, dedicated men. Most of them have served long years. The Church owes them an everlasting debt of gratitude.
Here is a list of some of these fine leaders:
|J. B. Farmer||1885||A. L. Ford||1928-1930|
|A. B. Daughtry||1888||J. H. Ramsay||1930-1931|
|T. B. Rose||1900||A. L. Ford||1931-1941|
|J. G. L. Crocker||1911-1913||S. V. Edwards||1941-1951|
|W. J. Jones||1914||Reid V. Harris||1951-1957|
|R. L. White||1915||Thomas J. Draper||1957|
|W. J. Jones||1917|
In 1947, the Baptist Vacation Bible School and the Methodist Vacation Church School began as a joint project. At first, teachers had to provide their own materials and plan their work. This program has continued each summer, first in one Church and then in the other. As time passed, materials were bought and the Schools were properly planned. The 1958 Bible School continued as a joint Vacation School, using the facilities of both Churches. Around 70 children attended.
The teachers from our Church were: Mrs. C. G. Matthews, Leader; Mrs. R. C. Spaine, Secretary and Treasurer; Mrs. B. R. Bullock, Mrs. A. H. Taylor, Miss Linda White, and Mrs. Thomas J. Draper. On each day of Bible School, refreshments were served by the Missionary Circles from both Churches.Number on Sunday School Roll in 1958
|Lottie S. Barbee||35|
|Men‘s Bible Class||35|
|Young People's Class||9|
Today's beautiful and well-equipped Educational Annex, with its spacious classrooms and recreational facilities, is a far cry from the facilities of the First Church. No longer do the members fear the fall of the swinging oil lamps on their heads. No longer is there an “Amen” corner with its echoes of “Amens” given to long-winded pastors who disturbed pleasant naps with threats of fire and brimstone.
But to oldsters who come back from time to time, there is nothing lost in the zeal and determination of the Church leaders to preserve the Sunday School as “the place to teach the Bible,” as well as to provide wholesome recreation for its members.Our Church . . . Its Women
WOMEN of the Seaboard Methodist Church have always been its loyal and dedicated workers. In fact, the Trustees and Stewards since 1880 have applauded the contributions of women members, according them full recognition for their services.Early Women Leaders
Furthermore, behind every “Church Father” in the four great eras of the Methodist Church has stood a consecrated wife, sister, or daughter. The following women were among those who helped to establish the first Church: Mrs. Bettie F. Pruden, Mrs. Lucy Taylor Leake, Mrs. Laura Grubbs, Mrs. A. Helen Joyner, Mrs. Roxie A. Rose, Miss Hopie G. Cuthrell, Miss Minnie W. Cuthrell, Mrs. Nettie F. Crocker, Mrs. Aggie Vick Edwards, Mrs. Rosa T. Norvell, Mrs. Frank Reese, Mrs. Mollie E. Bradley and Mrs. Nannie F. Stephenson.Women Leaders in the Second Era
In the second phase of church growth beginning with the new church in 1922 with G. F. Crocker, Building Chairman, another generation of women gradually joined with the older leadership: Mrs. Maie Vick Crocker, Mrs. Florence Leake Crocker, Mrs. Olive Jennette Vick, Mrs. Dorothy Maddrey Norton, Mrs. Bertha Joyner Parker, Mrs. Martha Buffaloe Maddrey, Mrs. Bessie Parker Worrell, Mrs. Lottie Stephenson Barbee, Mrs. Zena Vick Harris, Mrs. Minnie Crocker Gay,
Mrs. Maggie Vassar Stephenson, Mrs. Ruth Long Jones, Mrs. Bernice Clark Edwards, Mrs. Josephine Dixon Parker, Mrs. Lillian Balderson Ramsay, Mrs. Elizabeth Bottoms Bullock, Mrs. J. P. Spencer, Mrs. Fannie Emma Bullock, Mrs. Ruth Vick O'Brien, Mrs. Ernestine Long Edwards, Sr., Miss Selma Andrews, Mrs. Henry Ford, Mrs. Ida Haywood Vick, Mrs. Nellie Bryant, Mrs. Willie P. Matthews, Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine, Mrs. J. Bascom Hurley, Mrs. Elizabeth B. Howell, and Mrs. L. A. Watts.Young Women Leaders of Today
Coming down to 1949 with the renovation of the church, under the chairmanship of Reid Vick Harris, a new generation of women assumed their duties of leadership: Mrs. Louise Warmack Harris, Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass, Mrs. Mary Frances Stephenson Draper, Mrs. Frances Ramsay Magee, Mrs. Cleo Martin White, Mrs. Shirley Warrick Taylor, Mrs. William Parham Edwards, Jr., Mrs. Richard W. Edwards, Jr., Mrs. Mary Taylor Mumford, Mrs. Jim Taylor Edwards, Mrs. Wayland Maddrey, Mrs. Russell White, Mrs. E. R. Game, Mrs. P. H. Slade, Mrs. Harvey Irvin, and Mrs. Carl Bradshaw.Why Women Succeed as Church Leaders
Some one has said that the success of women is due to their willingness to work out the most minute details of any job they assume. But, perhaps more important than that is a woman's faith in Divine guidance. She believes that if she works hard enough, somehow God will give her strength to reach her goal. These lines written many years ago as a “Collect for all Women” express a woman's prayerful approach to all things:
Keep us, O God, from pettiness: let us be large in thought in word, in deed. Let us be done with faultfinding and leave off self seeking.
May we put away all pretense and meet each other face to face, without self pity and without prejudice. May we never be hasty in judgment and always generous. Let us take time for all things: make us to grow calm, serene, gentle. Teach us to put into action our better impulses, straightforward and unafraid. Grant that we may realize it is the little things that create differences: that in the big things of life we are as one. And may we strive to touch and to know the great common human heart of us all: and, O Lord God, let us not forget to be kind!Our Efforts To Prepare A Record Of Women's Work
Since apparently no records of the work of the women of Seaboard Methodist Church were kept until recent years, and since the information we are able to gather from present members is rather incomplete and not too definite, most often exact dates are impossible to give as many other facts. Many things will necessarily have to be stated in a general way.The Ladies Aid Society
The woman's organization must have begun with the Ladies Aid Society in the early years of this century. The chief purpose of this organization obviously was to aid in the work of the local church in a material way. Some of the older members were Mrs. Mollie Bradley, Mrs. Nettie F. Crocker, Mrs. Nannie F. Stephenson, Mrs. Bettie Pruden and Mrs. Lucy Taylor Leake.The Woman's Missionary Society
Around 1912 or the early teens, the Woman's Missionary Society was organized with Mrs. Aggie Vick Edwards and Mrs. Lucy Taylor Leake being elected first president and vice-president respectively. It was at the Seaboard Church, through the interest of the pastor's wife, Mrs. R. W. Bailey, that the Northampton Federation (now Northampton Sub-district) was organized
around 1917 with Mrs. J. B. Stephenson, Sr. of Severn, president. During the years of the Woman's Missionary Society, as always, the women were a very important part of the church—not only carrying on their society work, but working in the Sunday School, choir and in other church activities. Many of them served as teachers in the Sunday School, including the first Woman's Missionary Society president. Pianists include: Miss Johnnie Sue Bridgers, Mrs. Helen Bridgers Joyner, Mrs. Nannie F. Stephenson, and Mrs. Lottie Stephenson Barbee. First organists were: Mrs. Lottie S. Barbee and Mrs. Etheleen Carr Rowell. The present organist is Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass.
The women have been interested in many projects. The building of the present church in the 20's claimed their attention and received their support. In 1924 Seaboard charge was formed and work on a parsonage adjacent to the church began. Before this home was completed, Rev. and Mrs. Frank Culbreth were sent to the charge and lived, until the parsonage was ready, in the homes of Mrs. Maie Vick Crocker, Mrs. Zena Vick Harris and Mrs. Bertha Parker. The big project in 1940 was getting ready for the dedication of the church in which Mrs. J. Bascom Hurley, wife of the pastor of that time, was leader.The Woman's Society of Christian Service
With unification of the three branches of Methodism in 1939, the woman's organization again changed its name, this time to the Woman's Society of Christian Service. The first meeting of the Woman's Society of Christian Service of the North Carolina Annual Conference was held in Henderson in 1940. Mrs. J. Bascom Hurley was the delegate from this society.
For many years the Woman's organization met as a single unit. However, about 1950, a Wesleyan Service Guild was organized for the working women and mothers of small children who found it impractical to attend afternoon meetings. Most of the original members continued in the Woman's Society of Christian Service and met in the afternoon. About five or six years ago the Guild became an evening circle of the Woman's Society of Christian Service and has so continued since. These two circles have since been named in honor of two of the beloved members of the society, Mrs. Lillian Ramsay and Mrs. Bertha Parker.The Church Circles
For a number of years the big project of the Lillian Ramsay Circle was sponsoring children at the Methodist Home for Children in Raleigh. The Bertha Parker Circle has been particularly interested in local work. They have raised money by serving suppers, selling all-occasion cards and household articles. With funds raised they have given a piano to the church, tiled the floors of the recreation room and kitchen, bought things for the parsonage and made many other contributions to the equipment of the church.
Through the years the Woman's Society has sought to operate in accordance with the plan set up by the Woman's Division of Christian Service. The Society has used the prescribed program material and study books, has contributed to both the home and foreign missionary projects of the Division, and endeavored to comply with other Division requests, as Week of Prayer and Self-Denial, Sacrificial Meal, World Day of Prayer and the like. For many years there has been a delegate to the conference meetings. Most of the time one or more members have represented the local society at study seminars, district and sub-district meetings. For three years Mrs. Willie P. Matthews
attended the School of Missions and Christian Service. The past five years, Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine was the delegate to the Annual Conference of Woman's Society of Christian Service.
Not only have the members of the Woman's Society made financial and material contributions, but spiritual ones as well. Many things have been done for the needy, the shut-ins and the troubled. Perhaps one of the most outstanding spiritual contributions in the area of home missions was the aid given by several of our members to the Bethany Mission for the Portuguese people of Gaston, Northampton County, when they went to their church and taught the Sunday School lessons, sang, played the organ, and in general helped to carry on the work of the church.Officers of Women's Church Organizations
There is a wide gap between Mrs. Aggie Edwards's term as first president of the Woman's organization and the time when we can get definite facts to an appreciable extent. We do not know who the leaders were for several years. As nearly as we are able to tell, however, Mrs. Bertha Parker and Mrs. Martha Buffalo Maddrey served as presidents during the 20's. Those in the 30's include Mrs. L. A. Watts, wife of the pastor at that time, Miss Dorothy Maddrey, and Mrs. J. Bascom Hurley, wife of a former pastor. Then, in order of their services, presidents for the following years were as follows: Mrs. Lillian Ramsay 1941-1947; Mrs. Elizabeth B. Howell, 1947-1949; Mrs. Willie P. Matthews, 1949-1953; Mrs. Elizabeth B. Howell, 1953-1955; Mrs. Willie P. Matthews, 1955-1958; and at present Mrs. Lillian Ramsay. For eight yeras Mrs. Olive Jennette Vick was the able treasurer. Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine has held this office since 1953—the only office which one may hold for longer than four years consecutively.Life Membership Certificates
During the past several years a number of our members—though far too few—have been presented life membership certificates and pins, representing $25.00 each sent to Missionary projects of the Woman's Division. These include the following: Mrs. Lillian Ramsay, Mrs. Lottie Stephenson Barbee, Mrs. Maie Vick Crocker, Mrs. Fannie Emma Bullock, Mrs. Willie P. Matthews, Mrs. Bessie P. Worrell, Mrs. Martha Buffaloe Maddrey, Mrs. Bertha Parker, and Mrs. Olive Jennette Vick. Children have also been made Honorary Baby members with a gift of $5.00 each for missionary work.Memorials Honoring Women Members
Through the years, memorials have been given to the church for some of our women. Recently money has been given to the building fund of the church in memory of Mrs. Maie Vick Crocker. One of the outstanding memorial gifts of recent years was the automatic player for the chimes given for Mrs. Garnette Crocker Harris, Mrs. Aggie Vick Edwards, and Mrs. Zena Vick Harris by their respective sons: George W. Harris, S. V. Edwards, and Reid V. Harris. Our church and society many times have been saddened by the passing of members of our society. The most recent members to pass away were: Mrs. Maie Vick Crocker, Mrs. Lottie Stephenson Barbee, and Mrs. Bessie P. Worrell.Interesting Notes on Women's Work
In the summer of 1957 two girls, Judy Irvin and Bonnie Lee Bradshaw, were sent to our conference youth camp, Don-Lee, near Arapahoe, North Carolina, by the Woman's Society of Christian Service. This grew out of a study course by both circles of the Woman's Society of Christian Service.
Mrs. Willie Pritchard Matthews, formerly assistant Sub-District leader of Northampton Sub-district Woman's Society Christian Service is now leader since Mrs. H. P. Stephenson has moved. Mrs. Matthews was former District Vice-President.
The Lillian Ramsay Circle furnished the aluminum screen and storm door to the new church-annex. Members also helped buy new rugs and draperies for the parsonage.
The Bertha Parker Circle bought a new bed-room suite for the parsonage together with rugs and a chair. A piano was bought for the church in 1953 and tiled floor for church annex in 1958. Both Circles raised money by serving suppers, selling Christmas cards, knives, cutters, selling old papers, making articles for sale and by having bake-sales.
One of our oldest members, Mrs. Lillian B. Ramsay turned in a considerable sum of money to her Missionary Circle for payment on Parsonage Fund. Mrs. Ramsay made aprons and doughnuts and solicited sales for her “wares.”
Elizabeth B. Howell, assisted by Reid Vick Harris, II, Roddy Howell, Steve Edwards and Walter Brown, drove a truck for two days collecting old newspapers and magazines on a Paper Drive. They cleaned out garages and wood houses all over town. The drive netted $16.00 which was turned into the Society for the Parsonage Fund.List of Woman's Society of Christian Service Officers for
|President||Mrs. Lillian B. Ramsay|
|Vice-President||Mrs. Martha B. Maddrey|
|Treasurer||Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine|
|Secretary Recording||Mrs. Olive Jennette Vick|
|Christian Social Relation||Mrs. Betty H. Edwards|
|Local Church Activities||Mrs. Elizabeth B. Howell|
|Secretary Spiritual Life||Mrs. Fannie Emma Bullock|
|Secretary Childrens Work||Mrs. Hazel J. Edwards|
|Secretary Mission Education||Mrs. Elizabeth Bottoms Bullock|
|Secretary Youth Work||Mrs. Cleo M. White|
|Secretary Student Work||Mrs. Mary Taylor Mumford|
|Secretary Supply Work||Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass|
|Secretary Literature and Publications||Mrs. Louise W. Harris|
|Secretary Promotion||Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass|
|Secretary Status of Women||Mrs. Elsie K. Edwards|
|Lillian Ramsay Circle Leader||Mrs. Willie P. Matthews|
|Lillian Ramsay Circle Secretary||Mrs. Fannie Emma Bullock|
|Bertha Parker Circle Leader||Mrs. Mary Taylor Mumford|
|Bertha Parker Circle Secretary||Mrs. Annie Taylor Bass|
During World War I, four young men from the Seaboard Methodist Church answered the call of duty. They were:
Elmo Crocker—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. G. L. Crocker
Matt R. Stephenson, Jr.—Son of Dr. and Mrs. M. R. Stephenson
S. V. Edwards—Son of Mr. and Mrs. R. W. Edwards
W. P. Edwards—Son of Mr. and Mrs. R. W. Edwards
Elmo Crocker and S. V. Edwards saw service in Europe. All four young men lived to return home and assume their duties as responsible church and community leaders.
S. V. Edwards and W. P. Edwards are still active in the Church and community. Elmo Crocker passed away in 1936, and Matt R. Stephenson, Jr., in 1931.Our Men Who Served in World War II
- LEFT TO RIGHT: Mary Frances Draper, Teacher; Linda White, Judy Irvin, Cecil Whitehead, Tony Mumford, Jerry Moody, Henry Ford, Mack Harris. ABSENT: Reid Vick Harris, II.
MEN'S BIBLE CLASS
- FIRST ROW (LEFT TO RIGHT): Reid V. Harris, R. W. Edwards, Jr., Dr. John W. Parker, Jr., T. J. Draper, Morrison Ramsay, W. P. Edwards, Jr., J. P. Spencer, Jr., J. H. Ramsay, Jr., James Taylor Edwards, W. P. Edwards, L. S. Ford, S. V. Edwards. SECOND ROW: W. E. Mumford, Ivan B. White, J. G. Long, Joseph Long, J. M. Magee, Thomas M. Flythe, M. P. Taylor, D. Stanley Crocker, Jr., B. R. Bullock.
During World War II, 22 young men from the Seaboard Methodist Church answered the call of duty. They were:
Stanley Crocker—Son of Mr. and Mrs. D. S. Crocker—Army, European Theatre
Thomas E. Duke—Son of Mr. and Mrs. Herod Duke—Navy
James T. Edwards—Son of Mr. and Mrs. S. V. Edwards—Army, European Theatre
R. W. Edwards, Jr.—Son of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Edwards—Navy, European Theatre
Wesley F. Edwards—Son of Mr. and Mrs. E. L. Edwards—Navy
W. Parham Edwards, Jr.—Son of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Edwards—Navy
George W. Harris—Son of Mr. and Mrs. Ned Harris—Navy
James L. Harris, Jr.—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. L. Harris—Army, European Theatre
Reid Vick Harris—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. L. Harris—Air Force
W. Randolph Harris—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. L. Harris—Pacific Theatre
Robert S. Howell—Son of Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Howell—Navy
Bascom Hurley—Son of Rev. and Mrs. J. B. Hurley—Navy
William Ivey Long—Son of Mr. and Mrs. Millard Long—Army
Carl P. Parker, Jr.—Son of Dr. and Mrs. Carl P. Parker—Army Medical Corps, Pacific Theatre
Marshall Parker—Son of Dr. and Mrs. Carl P. Parker—Marine Corps, Pacific
Claude K. Ramsay—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Ramsay—Navy
Joseph H. Ramsay—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Ramsay—Navy, Brazilian Area
Morrison Ramsay—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Ramsay—Army, Pacific Theatre
J. R. Sewell—Nephew of Mrs. R. S. Worrell—Navy
J. P. Spencer, Jr.—Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. P. Spencer—Army
Edward Vassar Stephenson—Son of Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Stephenson—Marine Corps, Pacific
C. Bruce Vick—Son of Mr. and Mrs. W. R. Vick—Navy
EDWARD VASSAR STEPHENSON
KILLED IN ACTION
BATTLE OF IWO JIMA
MARCH 4, 1945
Edward Vassar Stephenson was born July 15, 1916, in Seaboard, North Carolina, son of Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Stephenson. He had one sister, Mary Frances. After graduating as valedictorian of Seaboard High School in 1934 he entered the University of North Carolina and graduated in 1937 with a degree in Pharmacy. He then worked as Pharmacist of the Madison Drug Company in Madison, North Carolina. It was here that he met and married Mary Helen Shelton. While living there he worked with the young people, as he had in Seaboard in their Sunday School class, except this time as Boy Scout Leader.
He had been commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps Reserve in 1936 and as the war picture darkened, decided to volunteer, May 3, 1942. While overseas he fought in Bougainville and Guam as a rifle platoon leader. After reaching the rank of Captain, he served as Infantry Company Commander on Iwo Jima. It was while fighting here that he was struck by shell fragments and killed instantly as he attempted to save the life of a buddy.
Thus ended his life at the age of 29 on March 4, 1945—a life that truly fits the words found in John 15:13: “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” Edward's body was returned to his parents, March 19, 1948. Now he rests in the quiet community cemetery.
FOR DISTINGUISHED SERVICE
JOHN MORRISON RAMSAY
Here follows a copy of a letter from Major General Leonard F. Wing, Headquarters, 43rd Infantry Division, U.S. Army, to Mrs. J. H. Ramsay, Morrison's mother:
“By direction of the President I have had the privilege of awarding to your son, John Morrison, a Bronze Star Medal for heroic action against the enemy on 3rd February 1945 in the Philippine Islands.
“I deem it an honor to serve in the same Command with your son who typifies the finest in the American Army—a brave and gallant soldier.
“I join with you in the prayer for his safe return when this war is won.”
Signed: General Leonard F. Wing
THE Fourth Era of the Seaboard Methodist Church actually began with the realization of the necessity for an Educational Annex. In the fall of 1955, Mrs. Shirley Warrick Taylor, leader and teacher in the Children's Division, convinced the members of the Sunday School that her division was bursting at the seams.
“So much so,” said Frances Ramsay Magee in her Sunday School notes, “that many of the tiny tots had to be lifted over crowded seats in order to make room for all.”
The impact of new and young families at last hit the Sunday School with a resounding thump. The challenge to the Seaboard Methodist Church was, therefore, tremendous. Members, young and old, had to face it. Adequate classroom space must be provided for the children, they said.How the Idea of An Educational Annex Grew
In her notes on the birth and growth of the idea of an Educational Annex, Shirley Warrick Taylor, teacher of young boys and girls in the Children's Division, said: “I suppose the idea was born when we realized something must be done to provide space for our children. ong before the problem came before the Sunday School. those of us who worked with the young people dreamed of an Educational Annex, but it was a faraway dream.”
The teachers in the Children's Division (the Nursery, Kindergarten, Primary, and Junior Classes) began to realize
about five years ago, that the space available for their assembly was much too small and inadequate. They were meeting in a room about ten by fifteen feet. The number of boys and girls in the classes was increasing as the young parents in the church began to realize the importance of making the church a vital part of their lives. When there were visitors, and there usually were at least two or three, the little assembly room (which also doubled for Nursery classroom with toys and equipment) was filled beyond capacity. Some of the boys and girls even had to sit in the adjoining rooms.
Soon the teachers began to talk among themselves of the need for a new assembly room. The Church members who were not directly involved in the work of the Children's Division had no idea of the circumstances under which these children and teachers held their assembly. One Sunday, when there was an overflowing of children, the teachers decided that the time was right for other members to see the conditions for themselves. Everyone in chuch was asked to come back into the crowded little assembly room. If any one thing led to the building of the new wing of the church, this was it.
Moreover, the need for bathroom facilities became more apparent at Vacation Church School time. The need for a kitchen and extra space for suppers became more apparent as the Missionary Circles held their suppers. Often they were caught in the rain with no place to go. The need for this addition was discussed in church and away from church, at Missionary meetings, and at any other meetings where members of the church were present. The need was there, and the members finally realized it.The Educational Annex Committee
The idea of an addition to the church seemed too great an undertaking for many of its leaders. It was only the farsightedness
of Reid V. Harris that laid the foundation for the beautiful Annex. He managed to convince all members that even a church has to gamble a little in order to keep growing. These thoughts were certainly reminiscent of words often spoken by G. F. Crocker, whose wisdom led to the building of the Second Church in 1922, and its renovation in 1949. Plans for the Annex were submitted and as usual cut, here and there. As the idea gained momentum, many members came forward with concrete ideas, as well as open pocket-books.
The Annex Building Committee was appointed October 28, 1956, by the Officials of the Church: Reid V. Harris, I. B. White, B. R. Bullock, Thomas J. Draper and Carl Bradshaw. The Annex was completed in 1958, at a cost of $9,278.00.Description of the Educational Annex
Shirley Warrick Taylor, whose dream of an Educational Annex is now a beautiful reality, gives us a word-trip through the building:
“We pass through a connecting door, which was put through the wall of the Primary Classroom, and enter into a large assembly room. In it we find lots of windows in the white plastered walls, five to be exact, which provide plenty of light and ventilation for our boys and girls. In one corner there is a built-in closet to be used for storing books, church records, teaching aids, etc. We see that there are bright new chairs, two sizes, for the small boys and girls, as well as for the larger ones. There is a new cabinet for the record player with space for records. The piano is there, also. It's a genuine thrill to know there is enough room for many children in our assembly room, and there is no feeling of being cramped or overcrowded.
“We continue our word-visit through the new Annex by going down the stairs, by way of a door from the assembly room, into the basement area. We turn left at the bottom of the stairs and enter into another large room. This room is the same size as the assembly room upstairs. There are the same number of windows but these have screens. The floor is covered with a green-flecked pattern tile. We find a large storage closet in this room for the vacuum cleaner and other cleaning equipment. This room, we realize, is suited to most any church activity, such as church social gatherings, suppers, Vacation Church School classes, and even extra classroom space.
“As we continue our visit, we move into the tile-floored kitchen. This room is equipped with a double sink and builtin cabinets. There is also adequate wiring for future placement of an electric stove. We move out into the hallway where we find the doorways leading into the two restroom areas. We look down the hallway and we can see a room which has been furnished and will serve as the pastor's study. We can see that this room was a part of the old building which was used for storage. The walls and floor have been painted and bookshelves have been built. The room has been made comfortably usable for the work done there. We can leave our new building now through an outside, awning-covered doorway which opens onto a new sidewalk around the church.
“We have seen the new building, the new chairs and tables in the classrooms, the new chairs in the assembly room, the new bulletin boards in the rooms and the chalkboards in two of the rooms, and the new bookcases, too.
“Our visit has not been a long one but we could not have failed to see the work which all our church members have put into the building. With all the wonderful additions to our church, how can any of us fail to realize the enormity of man's
possibilities when he is blessed with the Spirit and the Love of God and the love and friendship of his fellowmen!”Plaques Presented At the Annex Dedication
At the ceremony dedicating the new Educational Annex, Sunday, November 30, 1958, three bronze plaques were presented.Inscriptions On the Plaques
Outside Educational Building
IN MEMORY OF
GEORGE FENTON CROCKER
1886 - 1954
MAIE VICK CROCKER
1885 - 1955
On Inside Door Where Annex Joins To Other Building
IN MEMORY OF
GEORGE FENTON CROCKER
MAIE VICK CROCKER
Inside of Vestibule
THE AUTOMATIC CHIMES SYSTEM
IN LOVING MEMORY OF
AGGIE VICK EDWARDS
ZENA VICK HARRIS
GARNETTE CROCKER HARRIS
BY THEIR SONS
STONEWALL VICK EDWARDS
REID VICK HARRIS
GEORGE WILLIAM HARRIS
1952Annex Dedication Ceremony Includes Gifts and Memorials
Although the Annex Building was dedicated in memory of two of our beloved members—George Fenton Crocker and Maie Vick Crocker—all other gifts and memorials presented since the dedication of the first Church in 1940 were also included in the Annex Dedication Ceremony:
—Automatic Chimes System
—Six Rolls of Hymns for Automatic Chimes
Church Furnishings and Facilities Added Since 1940
In addition, other new church furnishings and facilities were included:
—New Heating System
—New Lighting Fixtures
—New Wurlitzer Electric Organ and PianoPrayer of Dedication
From the Worship and Ritual of The Methodist Church
“Almighty God, our heavenly Father, whose eyes are ever toward the righteous, and whose ears are ever open unto their cry; graciously accept, we pray thee, this building which we now dedicate to thee, to thy service, and to thy glory, that in it love and wisdom may unite to bring joy and strength to those who gather here; and we beseech thee, receive us thy
servants who here dedicate ourselves anew to thee and to those offices of fellowship and good will in which thou art well pleased. Grant that those who come here may be cheered and quickened in mind and body, and that they may be stirred in spirit to serve thee wisely and steadfastly; and the praise shall be thine forever; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”PART II
As we look back to the first quarter of a century in the life of our Church and recall the names of those families who made our early history, we find that many of them have no direct descendants in our Church today.
Mr. Frank Foster, one of our founding Fathers and Northampton's County's first School Superintendent, is without descendants in our Church, although three of his children—Eva, (Mrs. L. L. McLendon), Allie (Mrs. J. H. Harrell) and J. R.—live in Seaboard today, members of the Baptist Church.
W. F. Grubbs and his wife, Laura, who gave such splendid leadership to our early Church, and their son, David G. whose memorial window in honor of his parents lend beauty and inspiration to the Church, have all passed on leaving no children to carry on the tradition of the famous family name.
There are no Roses, no Cuthrells, no Bradleys, no Martins, no Prudens, no Farmers, no Fishers, no Daughtrys, no Wheelers, no Reeses, no Norvells, no Gays, in our present membership. None of Mrs. Verda Ivey Long's children are members now. All of these families were staunch Methodists in their days. Like the Grubbs family, many members of these families have passed on. Others have moved away.
Because we owe them a debt of gratitude for their past leadership, we have listed the members of our early Church for the years—1886, 1893 and 1908, at the conclusion of Chapter III “Our Church—From 1880 to 1922”.
Yet, there are families in our Church leadership today whose names were famous in our early Church history: Crocker, Edwards, Ford, Harris, Jones, Little, Parker, Ramsay, Stephenson
and Vick. Others carry on their family tradition though another name, even though they are descendants of the Leakes, Iveys, Joyners, Bridgers, Taylors.
But the saddest of all is that with the passing of Lottie S. Barbee, the beloved family of M. R. Stephenson no longer has membership in our Church.
The amazing things to strangers who visit our Church is its small membership. Seldom in our Church history have we had 100 or more members.
Yet, they ask: How can you do so many things and have such a lovely Church with such a small membership. Our answer is: Our families are dedicated Methodists who were brought up to serve their Church and help make it strong and great.
This chapter is, therefore, about “Our Families, Past and Present”—people who have served or who are now serving our Church as active members.There is destiny that makes us brothers,None goes his way alone,All that is sent into the lives of othersComes back into our own.Edwin MarkhamAuthors of the Families Stories
|George W. Harris||J. P. Spencer, Jr.|
|Mrs. Mary Frances Draper||Mrs. Mary Pruden Vincent|
|R. W. Edwards, Jr.||Mrs. Nancy Barbee Crawford|
|Mrs. C. L. Vick||Mrs. Maggie Sue Maddrey|
|Mrs. C. G. Matthews||Mrs. C. M. Mitchell|
|Mrs. Joseph Long||Mrs. Elizabeth B. Howell|
|Mrs. Lucy L. Spaine||Mrs. Louise W. Harris|
|Mrs. Frances Ramsay Magee||Mrs. Ruth Vick O'Brien|
Annie Taylor Bass has made a great impression on the growth and work of our Church since she moved her membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1951. She has served well in all places she has been chosen. She is now our present Church organist.
Annie was born in 1922, the youngest daughter of the late Jennie Stephenson and Dempsey Turner Taylor of the Gumberry section. Her father, the late “Mr. Dempsey”, will be remembered for his long years of faithful service in the Pleasant Grove Church, having served as Superintendent of the Sunday School for a number of years. Although Mrs. Taylor was a member of the Elam Baptist Church, all ten of the Taylor children joined their father in the Pleasant Grove Church.
Annie married Russel Lee Bass, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bass, in August 1945. They are the parents of four children: David Allan, Gary Lee, Robert Turner and Jennifer. David and Gary go with their father to the local Baptist Church, and Robert and Jennifer are active members of the Seaboard Sunday School with their mother.Mrs. Nellie M. Bryant
Mrs. Nellie Bryant was born July 28, 1901, near Emporia, Virginia, the daughter of the late June Bryant of Greenville County, Virginia, and Rosa Long of Northampton County, North Carolina. In girlhood, she joined St. Andrew's Methodist Church with her father and grew up in that church as a very devoted member.
In 1925 she married the late J. W. Matthews of the Concord community. She has one daughter and one son and six grandchildren, all of Emporia. Mrs. Matthews transferred her membership to the Seaboard Methodist church in 1942 and
has since remained a loyal member. Her husband died in 1946 and in 1947 she came into town to live where she has since remained except for one year when in Virginia.
In 1948, Mrs. Matthews married Ernest Bryant of Greenville County, Virginia. He died in 1958.
Mrs. Bryant is a member of the Lottie S. Barbee Sunday School Class and the Lillian Ramsay Circle of the Woman's Society of Christian Service.The B. R. Bullock Family
Elizabeth Bottoms was born in Margarettsville, North Carolina, the daughter of John Green Bottoms and the late Nettie Bridgers Bottoms. She and her family were members of Sharon Methodist Church. Elizabeth married Bennett Reese Bullock of Seaboard, who also became a member at Sharon. Soon after their marriage, they moved their membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church.
Reese is associated with the Public Health Department of Northampton County and Elizabeth is a primary teacher in the Northampton County Schools. Both of them have been most active and faithful workers in all phases of church activities. Reese is Church Lay Leader and has served as Steward, Chairman of the Building Committee for the Sunday School plant, teacher of the Men's Bible Class one quarter in each year, president and secretary of his class, and a member of the choir for several years.
Elizabeth has served as Superintendent of the Children's Department, has been a teacher in all departments for the past thirteen years, pianist for the Sunday School and a choir member. Their son, Billy Reese, is in the Junior Class of the Sunday School. He and his mother had perfect attendance at Sunday School the past year and his father for the past two years.Mrs. P. A. Bullock
For nearly three decades Mrs. P. A. Bullock has been actively affiliated with various phases of the work of Seaboard Methodist Church. From Georgia she came to Seaboard as Miss Fannie Emma Bickley to teach in the local high school. Since her marriage to Mr. Bullock, she has made a distinct contribution to the church as well as to the civic life of the entire community. She transferred her membership in October, 1933.
Specifically, hers has been a ministry of teaching. For over 20 years she taught consecutively the Adult Bible Class of Seaboard Methodist Sunday School. Annually for the past several years, she has taught a Mission Study book for the Woman's Society of Christian Service of the Seaboard Charge. She has served as chairman of the Spiritual Life Committee for six years and as circle Secretary and participant in the monthly programs of this Society. For the Church she heads the committee on Evangelism.
As speaker, Mrs. Bullock has participated in programs not only for her own Church and the local Baptist Church, but for church groups in other areas. She has conducted meditations and devotional studies in Northampton Zone meetings. She has also addressed the Halifax-Warren Zone meeting and the Rocky Mount District Seminar.
The faithful service of this member has been an example and a blessing to Seaboard Methodist Church.The J. G. L. Crocker Family
In the first decade of the 1800's, Natham, Joe and Bill Crocker left their native soil in Southampton County, Virginia. They crossed the Meherrin River into the fertile valleys that lay between three rivers: the Meherrin, the Roanoke and the Chowan. In search of virgin soil and timber, they ended their migration
in and around the present town and township of Seaboard.
As the years passed, Joe was the only one of the three brothers who ventured into matrimony.
The homestead of Nathan and Bill, bachelors, was located in the Pleasant Grove section. The homestead of Joe Crocker was located where J. L. Gay now lives.
Joe Crocker was married twice. By his first wife he had two sons and three daughters. It was on June 29, 1850, that Joe Crocker's second wife, a Miss Buffaloe, gave birth to J. G. L. Crocker.
J. G. L. Crocker was brought into the world when the Federal Government was in a state of turmoil over the question of the extension of slavery. A compromise was finally reached. This compromise was known as the Great Compromise of 1850, which gave reason and thought to the belief that the slavery question was permanently settled.
George (J. G. L. Crocker), a young buck with ambitions and desires to make his own way, took a job with the Seaboard Air Line Railroad sawing wood for the locomotives that transported the cars over rails between Norfolk and Norlina.
In the meantime one of George's half sisters had married a Mr. Brockwell and another, a Mr. Lassiter. These two young men were interested in the lumber and sawmill industry, and so they went into a partnership known as the Brockwell & Lassiter Sawmill Company. Eager for advancement, young George left his woodsawing job and went to work for the Brockwell & Lassiter Sawmill. This industry was located near the railroad at the entrance to the Joe Crocker homestead.
As the years past, the Brockwell and Lassiter Sawmill moved to Southampton County, Virginia, near the present town of Franklin, Virginia. George moved to Virginia with the firm.
Brockwell & Lassiter later became interested in what was then known as the “Commission Business”. Giving up the sawmill business, they moved to Norfolk and went into the “Commission Business”. J. G. L. Crocker went with them.
Mr. Crocker became their representative in Northampton County and the Hicks Ford Community (now Emporia, Virginia). Mr. Crocker would come to Jackson (Northampton County Seat) on first Mondays and take orders from the farmers for supplies they needed to carry on their farming operations. In the Fall of the year, the farmers would ship their cotton to Brockwell & Lassiter in Norfolk and their supply bill was deducted from the sale. Then Brockwell & Lassiter would send the balance of the sale money to the farmers.
Mr. J. G. L. Crocker finally returned to his home community and he formed a merchantile business, known as Maddrey & Crocker. This partnership lasted for twenty-five years. As it grew and prospered, it was recognized as one of the county's leading stores.
Mr. Crocker was married to Nettie D. Futrell, May 21, 1879. George met Nettie while she was visiting Mrs. Joe Maddrey, the first, who was a relative of hers. The newly-weds lived in the Maddrey home until George built his home which is now the residence of his grandson, Dean Stanley Crocker. To this union, which lasted for nearly 41 years, seven children were born: Hugh, Bernard, Lloyd, Fenton, Elmo, Garnette and Dean. Of the seven children none are now living.
After the firm of Maddrey & Crocker was dissolved, by mutual consent, George Crocker continued his mercantile pursuits alone. Later the firm of Crocker & Harris was organized, and this firm continued till his health forbade his active participation in any business. However, at his death he was the oldest merchant in the county.
Mr. J. G. L. Crocker died at his home in Seaboard, on Thursday evening, January 22, 1920, in his 70th year.
Mrs. Nettie D. Crocker joined the Methodist Church of Seaboard on February 15, 1884. She was a charter member of her church and taught Sunday School many years, attending regularly and giving her time and services until late years.
Mr. Crocker joined the Methodist Church a few years after his wife and became a valuable member. He taught Sunday School for many years and during his life time became Superintendent of the Sunday School and a Steward of the Church.
All of Mr. Crocker's children joined the Methodist Church and remained members until their death or until they transferred to another town.
Fenton and Dean became very active members of their Church, serving as Stewards or Trustees, Superintendents of Sunday School and on many committees of the Church. Fenton, Elmo and Dean rendered valuable service whenever they could or whenever they were called upon to do so.
The relatives of the late J. G. L. Crocker now living in the Seaboard Community and members of the Seaboard Methodist Church are: The son of Dean S. Crocker and Florence Crocker, Dean Stanley Crocker. Stanley lives in the old Crocker home with his wife, Nancy Womble Crocker, and their daughter, Nancy Ann Crocker, and his mother, Florence Leake Crocker. The son of Garnette Crocker Harris and Ned M. Harris, George W. Harris, lives on his father's farm. Vaughan Crocker, son of Elmo Crocker, lives in Norfolk, Virginia.
In Mr. J. G. L. Crocker's life-time, his county honored him with various positions of trust. He was County Treasurer for 16 years. He was also Chairman of the Board of County Commissioners and Chairman of the Board of Education. Mr. Crocker was one of the first to see the need of a bank in Seaboard.
He was elected its first President in 1906. Because of his far sightedness and wisdom, a State Agricultural School was organized in the Seaboard School System. Mr. Crocker was also one of the charter members of the Masonic Lodge.
J. G. L. Crocker was a man that did not know how to do a wrong thing. Possessed of a generous heart, he never knew what the word “No” meant. No white or colored ever appealed to him for aid and heard him say “No”. At his death, the following tribute was paid him:
In the death of Mr. George Crocker, Northampton has lost one of its best and most useful citizens. No man of his generation was more universally loved and esteemed by the people of his county.
He was not a politician, and in all of his dealings with the public he was the same open, frank, courteous gentleman, free from cant or hypocrisy. By his life the world was made better.The Herod H. Duke Family
Herod Hobdy Duke was born in Rich Square, North Carolina, February 14, 1871. He was the son of Tommy and Sallie Boone Duke. He spent his early years near Rich Square. In 1902, in New Hope Methodist Church, he married Maggie Doschia Parker, daughter of Edmond and Susan Collier Parker of Lasker, North Carolina. They lived in Rehobeth in the early years of their married life, where Mr. Duke was engaged in mercantile business, also serving as Post Master.
They later moved to Jackson, North Carolina, and here he was in the mercantile business as well as farming.
In 1918, they moved to Seaboard, North Carolina, where he was engaged in mercantile business and carpentry. He and Mrs. Duke joined the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1920. He was at one period Mayor of Seaboard. Mr. Duke died on January 14, 1941, and was buried in the Seaboard Cemetery.
To this couple were born 10 children. Four of these died in infancy.
Lewis Herod Duke was married to Elizabeth Carter of Richmond, Virginia. To them was born one child, Janet Louise Duke. Lewis was later married to Pauline Bennett of Chilhowie, Virginia. Lewis died at the age of 46 and was buried in Chilhowie, Virginia.
Euzelia Duke married Babel Taylor Lassiter of Richmond, Virginia. To them were born two children, Evelyn and Kenneth. Evelyn, the oldest, died at the age of seven.
Kenneth Lassiter is living in New York. He was graduated from V.P.I. in Blacksburg, Virginia, as a Civil Engineer.
Mary Elizabeth Duke married Walter Burton of Richmond, Virginia. To them was born one child, Joyce Ann Burton. Joyce Ann Burton married Jesse B. Myers of Ahoskie. They have one child, Richard Dale Myers. Mary Elizabeth later married Alvah Futrell. To them were born two children, Elizabeth Duke Futrell and Joseph Futrell. They live in Rich Square, North Carolina.
Marie Duke married Carl L. Bradshaw of Newsome, Virginia. To them were born two children, Bonnie Marie and Betty June. They now live in Richmond, Virginia.
Mr. and Mrs. Bradshaw and daughters returned to Seaboard in 1952 and built a new brick home on Main Street, where they lived until 1957. During the few years they were here, each member of the family made a good contribution to our community and church life.
Carl transferred his membership to Seaboard Methodist Church in 1952. He was a member of the 1956 Annex Building Committee and he was appointed Steward soon after his transfer to our church. He served as Secretary and Treasurer also.
Marie was loyal in her attendance and support. She joined the church September 1924. She has served as President of the Lottie S. Barbee Class and as an officer in the Bertha Parker Missionary Circle. The Bradshaw children, Bonnie and Betty, attended Sunday School regularly and Bonnie was a member of the choir.
Maggie Sue Duke married John Kenneth Maddrey of Conway, North Carolina. Maggie Sue is a regular attendant of Sunday School today. She has been a member of our church since 1926.
Thomas E. Duke was married to Esther Sloan of Gainsville, Georgia. To them were born two children, Sue Ellen Duke and John Eddie Duke. They live in Gainesville, Georgia.
Mrs. Herod Duke, one of our Community's beloved senior citizens, is still a member of our Church.The Ed Lewis Edwards Family
Floyd Wesley Edwards, nick-named “Toothpick”, the son of the late Ed Lewis Edwards and Mrs. Lena Barnes Edwards, joined the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1934. He served as a naval flight officer in World War II.
“Toothpick” was the only son in the family but all his sisters—Pauline, Ernestine, Vernie Mae and Delano—were members of the Sunday School and Church prior to their marriages when they transferred their membership to their new home towns.
“Mr. Ed Lewis” was a member of Concord Church at the time of his death and Mrs. Edwards, although a faithful and regular member of our Sunday School, is still a member of Concord, which she joined in early girlhood.The Richard Walter Edwards Family
Richard Walter Edwards was born just outside of Creeksville, North Carolina, on April 4, 1866. His mother was Martha B.
Edwards, and his father was Willis D. Edwards. As a sidelight, Willis D. Edwards or “Dock” as he was familiarly known was a 7th son, and was possessed of certain mystic and occult powers, such as, being able to foretell events.
“Mr. Dick,” as the community affectionately called him, spent his childhood in and around Creeksville, and according to the Edwards’ family Bible, he joined the church, presumably the Zion Methodist Church, in 1877, when he was 11 years old. Thus began his official affiliation with the Methodist Church that was to have a profound influence upon his life.
When he was sixteen, he took employment as a clerk with the mercantile firm of Captain Bill Stephenson at Margarettsville. Mr. Dick was often heard to say that he started to work at the meager salary of $100 per year plus board and room.
On February 6, 1889, he married Aggie O. Vick. She was the daughter of Major W. P. Vick and Johnnie Bottoms Vick of near Margarettsville. No accurate information can be obtained as to how long R. W. Edwards remained in the employ of Bill Stephenson, but evidently when he married or soon after, he and his wife moved to Jackson, North Carolina. There he received a higher yearly wage from his employer, John Buxton. In Jackson, Walter Grady was born on February 26, 1890; and two years later, a daughter, Martha Lucile was born, January 9, 1892.
Some few months after the birth of the second child, Mr. Dick undertook a business enterprise in the furniture business with a partner in Newport News, Virginia. All of the business was of a time nature, and he was not satisfied with this way of doing business. After a few months, he drew this relationships to a close and settled in Seaboard in 1893.
On April 1, 1893, he joined W. S. Pruden in a mercantile venture located in a wooden frame building that later came to
be known as the Grubbs store. This partnership lasted for two or three years. Then he went in the mercantile business for himself in the wooden frame building located on the present spot of Taylor Service station.
For some reason he could not bring his family immediately to Seaboard as soon as he founded a business. His wife stayed with his family in Creeksville, and on June 21, 1893, reportedly a very stormy day, another son was born—Willis Parham Edwards.
Soon after Parham's birth, the family moved to Seaboard and lived in the house across the street from the present Methodist Church. In that house on May 11, 1895, Stonewall Vick Edwards was born.
Mr. Dick's affiliation with the church began as soon as he moved into Seaboard, and the record shows that he moved his membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1893.
In 1900 or in late 1899, Joe Cuthrell built a structure some 200 feet or so west of the store operated by R. W. Edwards with the intention of setting up an overall factory. This venture was never accomplished, and the building was sold to R. W. Edwards, and there he moved his business from the corner store.
The R. W. Edwards family continued to live in the house across from the Methodist church but in a year or two—it is not known exactly how long—he moved into a house located where the Duke house now stands. That house burned in 1899, and in 1900 the present old Edwards home was constructed.
On July 10, 1903, in that house the last child, a daughter—Agnes Johnnie—was born.
Not much information of a detailed nature can be found about Mr. Dick's early connection with the Church in Seaboard. In 1922 he was a member of the building committee
responsible for the present structure. He served on the Board of Stewards from early days until his death. He worked hard for his Church and during the shaky, depression days of the 30's he kept the Church on a sound financial basis.
Aggie O. Edwards, wife of R. W. Edwards, was a righteous, upright woman dedicated to Christ and His Church. She was unfailing and unwavering in her support of the Church; moreover, she served for 40 years as Sunday School teacher and for long years as President of the Woman's Missionary Society. She always worked for the Church and all its endeavors until she withdrew from active life. Never did she wander, however, from thoughts of Christ. In her last days, she would recite from memory complete chapters from the Gospels and sermons she had learned.
W. Grady Edwards, the oldest son, became a member of the church in October 1902. He was engaged in business with his father until his death in 1946. He married the former Bernice Clark of Weldon on January 1, 1916. His wife continues her faithful and loyal support of the church, to which she transferred her membership on June 7, 1917.
W. Parham Edwards joined the church November 8, 1903. His wife is the former Ernestine Long of Greenwood, Florida. He met her when she came to Seaboard to visit her college mate, Lottie S. Barbee. Parham and Ernestine Edwards made their home with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. R. W. Edwards. A great tribute was paid to Ernestine by “Mr. Dick” in his last days when he said, “Ernestine is one of the finest ladies I have ever known. I don't know what Aggie and I would have done without her.”
S. V. Edwards joined the Seaboard Methodist Church when he was seven or eight years old. He attended church regularly until he was called to the Army in 1918. For two years, he
served overseas driving an ammunition truck in France and Germany. Upon his return, he resumed his leadership in the Church. In 1928, he became secretary of the Church, and in 1931 he assumed the duties of treasurer in addition to the position of secretary. He has carried out the duties of the treasurer until the present—a period of 27 years. He served as Sunday School superintendent from 1939 to 1947, and has been a member of the official Board of the Church for many years. His wife is Leila James Taylor, of Gumberry, whom he married on February 15, 1921.
James T. Edwards, son of S. V. Edwards, has been a member of the church since 1934 and has been a member of the Official Board of the Church since 1954. Since his return from his service in the Army in 1946, he has served for one year as President of the Men's Bible Class, and is one of the permanent teachers of the class.
Richard W. Edwards, Jr., son of W. Parham Edwards, has been a member of the Church since 1931 and has been a member of the Official Board of the Church since 1954. Since 1956, he has been Chairman of the Board of the Church. He served as President of the Men's Bible Class, and has been one of the teachers of that class since 1946.
W. Parham Edwards, Jr., younger son of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Edwards, Sr., joined the church in June 1934. After his return from service in 1946, he served for one year as president of the Men's Bible Class, secretary of that class, and at present is assistant-secretary of the Sunday School.
Martha Lucile Edwards married Carl W. Graham, December 21, 1916, and now resides in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Agnes Johnnie Edwards married Henry T. Johnson, January 6, 1934, and now resides in Henderson, North Carolina.
Members of the Edwards family who are now members of the Church or Sunday School are as follows:
S. V. Edwards.
James T. Edwards and his wife Betty Howell Edwards and their children Steve, Dana, and James, Jr.
W. P. Edwards, and his wife, Ernestine Long Edwards.
Mrs. Bernice Clark Edwards, widow of W. Grady Edwards.
Richard W. Edwards, Jr. and his wife, Elsie Kilpatrick Edwards, and their two daughters, Patricia and Melody Ernestine.
W. P. Edwards, Jr., and his wife, Hazel Jacocks Edwards, and their two children, W. P. III, and Hazel Yvonne.A. L. Ford
Memories of A. L. Ford's foot-prints will long linger in our Church. He joined October 1917 when he moved his family to Seaboard. He served well and faithfully in every appointed place. He was Sunday School Superintendent from 1929-1939 and served as a delegate to many District Conference meetings, always faithful in his attendance.
He was the son of Thomas and Cora Millikin Ford of Southampton, Virginia. He married Rosa Cloyd Jordan of Northampton and they were parents of three children: Rosa Cloyd, now Mrs. Ezelle Ward, of Edenton; Madeline, now Mrs. Grady C. Howell of Stony Creek, Virginia; and Elwood, now of Tarboro who remains a member of our Church, having joined in 1922.The L. S. Ford Family
Lester Shipley Ford, Jr., was born in Reidsville, North Carolina, and his wife, formerly Mildred Forbis, was born in Gibsonville, North Carolina. To this union were born four children—Mildred (Mrs. R. K. Wilson of Knoxville, Tennessee);
Dolores (Mrs. Lloyd Newsome, Jr., of Henderson, North Carolina); Susie (now a senior at Woman's College, Greensboro, North Carolina); and Henry (now a student in Seaboard High School). All are members of the Seaboard Methodist Church except the two married daughters who transferred their memberships after marriage.
The Fords came to Northampton County in 1941 from Charlotte, North Carolina, and transferred their memberships to our Church in 1944. Mr. Ford, who is now employed by the State Highway Commission, received his education from High Point, Elon and North Carolina State College. Mrs. Ford graduated from Elon College and taught for a number of years in the North Carolina Public Schools.
The Fords have been active in church, community and civic affairs during their few years of residence in Seaboard. Mrs. Ford is a member of the Woman's Society of Christian Service and a member of the Eastern Star Chapter. Mr. Ford has served as teacher of the Men's Adult Bible Class, is a Past Master of the Seaboard Masonic Lodge, is a Past Patron of the Eastern Star Chapter, and is at present Secretary of the Masonic Lodge. He was Mayor of the Town of Seaboard from 1947 to 1955 and is now Town Clerk.Thomas Magnus Flythe
Thomas Magnus Flythe was born in Conway, North Carolina, son of Milton and Mae Futrell Flythe. In 1949, he married Emma Jean Edwards, only child of the late Mr. and Mrs. W. Paul Edwards of Seaboard and came here to live. They have one son, Tommy.
Tom moved his membership from the Conway Methodist Church in 1950 to this Church. His beautiful voice adds greatly to the choir each Sunday.
He is an outstanding farmer, Mason and a member of the Lion's Club.Mrs. E. R. Game
Mrs. E. R. Game came to Seaboard from Roanoke Rapids and moved her membership from there to this Church in 1948. Her daughter, Dorothy, was a teacher in our Sunday School before her marriage. Mrs. Game, called “Trannie”, was a most energetic worker in the Bertha Parker Circle of the W. S. C. S., always doing over and above her share in every project undertaken. She and her husband now live in Roanoke Rapids. Her daughter has married and lives in South Carolina with her husband, George Counts, and two sons.Mrs. Minnie Crocker Gay
Mrs. Minnie Jones Gay came to Seaboard in 1918 as the bride of Andrew J. Crocker, who was a member of the Seaboard Baptist Church.
She was the daughter of John Willis and Nannie Webb Jones of Reidsville, North Carolina, and the sister of the late W. W. Jones of Seaboard. Soon after arriving, she transferred her membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church, May 1912. “Miss Minnie” has remained a loyal and faithful member. She has been active in the woman's work of the Church and served several years as the treasurer of the Woman's Society of Christian Society as well as holding other offices in the Society.
In 1935 her first husband died. In 1948, she married again—to J. L. Gay. Though Mr. Gay is a member of the Seaboard Baptist Church, “Miss Minnie” still remains a beloved and loyal member of her Methodist Church.The A. K. Harris Family
Adolphus Kemper Harris, son of Georgie Kelly and Michel Decator Lawrence Harris, was born December 9, 1873, on the
old stage-coach route about two miles from Concord Church. He was known, admired and respected throughout his life as “Mr. Dol Harris”. Until his death, November 27, 1950, “Mr. Dol” remained a faithful and loyal member of the Methodist Church.
On June 14, 1900, he married Mattie Darden of Southampton County, Virginia. All six of their children followed in the footsteps of their parents by joining the Seaboard Methodist Church. Elliott Woodard, 1901, now located at 2 York Place, Williston Park, New York, was the first born. There were then three daughters—Alice Kelly (Mrs. Thomas C. Bowie, Jr., West Jefferson, North Carolina) in 1905; Gertrude Darden (Mrs. Coy B. Hopkins, Stuart, Virginia) in 1907; and Margaret Kemper (Mrs. James J. Leake, Seaboard, North Carolina) in 1911. Arthur Lawrence (now residing at 819 Watson Avenue, Winston Salem, North Carolina) was born in 1916. The last child, in 1917, was Helen Virginia (Mrs. Jesse B. Harden, 1436 Virgilina Avenue, Norfolk, Virginia). Of this faithful Church family only one—Margaret (Mrs. Leake)—is now on our Church Register. The others, as they married, moved their church memberships to the areas of their employment and residence where they have found places of services in their respective churches.
Mrs. Alice Susan Darden, mother of Mrs. A. K. Harris, transferred her membership to our Church after she came to Seaboard to live with her daughter.
“Mr. Dol”, as a young man, was the son in the firm name of “M. D. L. Harris & Son”, an extensive and unusual business of its day. Wagons and buggies were sold and repaired and general hardware of every kind was available. Later “Mr. Dol” was engaged in the undertaking business and the old-timers recall his black hearse drawn by his beautiful iron-gray horses. Hardware
and merchandising were an integral part of “Mr. Dol's” life. At the time of his death he was operating his business in a modern store.
His business, however, was secondary to his Church. He was a faithful Steward in our Church from 1924 until his death in 1950 and never missed a service unless he was sick. He had a quiet and dignified manner about him that commanded respect and, although he had very little to say in public, he was wonderful in the things he did for his fellowman. He is remembered, along with Mr. Dick Edwards, as one who passed the collection plate during services for many years. He almost always used the same pew in church on the far right hand side and it still seems, in some respects, only yesterday he was there—a strong pillar in our Church.The James Luther Harris Family
James Luther Harris, son of William E. Harris and Bashaba Boyce Harris, was born on a farm near Pleasant Grove, now known as the John Hughes Farm.
He joined the Seaboard Methodist Church in September 1907, shortly before he married Zena Alice Vick, daughter of W. R. Vick and Alice Reid Vick. Of this union four children were born: Sarah Alice, James Luther, William Randolph and Reid Vick.
Mr. and Mrs. Harris brought their children up to love and honor the Church. They became members in their early childhood. James died at his home in Williamston in December 1951. He was survived by his wife, Eva Harrision Harris and three sons. Sarah Alice, now Mrs. Whitt Griffith of Murfreesboro, is an active church worker in her home town. Her sons are Fenton, a student at West Point, and Luke, a high school student.
- SEATED (LEFT TO RIGHT): Philip Mitchell, Nancy Ann Crocker, Harvey “Butch” Irvin, Jennifer Bass. TEACHERS: Hazel J. Edwards and Helen Irvin.
- SEATED (LEFT TO RIGHT): Robbie Bass, Melody Edwards, Dana K. Edwards, Andrew Mitchell, James Hilton Little, Yvonne Edwards, Stan Ramsay, Marcia Ramsay. TEACHERS: Rachal Little, Cleo White.
William Randolph joined the Navy in early manhood. He is now retired and lives in Norfolk with his wife, the former Mary Wester and two daughters, Ronda and Donna Lee.
Reid Vick now resides in Seaboard with his wife Louise Warmack Harris, and two sons, Reid Vick Harris II and Carl Warmack Harris.
Luke, as all knew him, was a devoted husband and father. A merchant and farmer, he worked diligently to provide his family with the good things of life.
He was a sincere church member, lending a willing hand to all church activities. If coal played out and there were no church funds available, Luke bought coal himself.
Whenever a Quarterly or District Conference was held in the Seaboard Church, Luke generously provided help and entertainment. When the parsonage was built, he worked faithfully to make it a comfortable and beautiful home for the pastors on the Seaboard Charge. For many years, he was a leader in the church Prayer meetings and worked in the Sunday School.
After the death of his first wife, Zena Vick Harris, he married Vera Boseman, of Ahoskie. Of this union, one daughter was born, Vera Scott, who married Charles Septer. Mr. and Mrs. Septer have a son and daughter.Sydney Stewart Harris, Jr.
Sydney Stewart Harris, Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. Sydney S. Harris, Sr., joined this Church at an early age. Graduating from Seaboard High School, he attended Richmond Professional Institute of the College of William & Mary, Richmond, Virginia, where he graduated in Bachelor of Fine Arts. After graduating, he volunteered for the Air Force and is now stationed in Lakeland, Texas.
His parents, Mr. & Mrs. S. S. Harris, have never moved their membership from Concord Church, but they have always been very liberal with their donations to this Church. Mrs. Harris’ beautiful flower arrangements have added much to the beauty of our services.Mr. and Mrs. Richard Hughes
Richard and Mabel Hughes moved to Seaboard early in 1948 to make their home. Mabel, a native of Halifax County, joined the Tabor Methodist Church on the Littleton charge as a young girl and Richard, a native of Northampton County, joined the Jackson Methodist Church. Soon after coming to Seaboard, they moved their membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church. The Seaboard Cleaners is owned and operated by Richard. Mabel works in Jackson, North Carolina, as the Chief Marketing quota clerk for the Agricultural Stabilization Conservation Service. Richard and Mabel sing in the choir and their lovely voices add greatly to the song services.Elizabeth Buffaloe Howell
When Edgar A. Guest wrote that little poem, he used “he” instead of “she.” Could he but meet Elizabeth Buffaloe Howell, he, too, would gladly substitute “she” for “he.”
For Elizabeth has spent her life showing people things can be done—Anything—if they'll only put their shoulders to the wheel and Push.
Born March 25, 1905, in Jackson, N. C., Elizabeth was the second child of John J. Buffaloe and Alice Stancell Buffaloe. Elizabeth inherited her drive and determination from both sides of her family. The record shows a history of accomplishments by the Buffaloe and Stancell families. Each family was engaged in the civic and political life of their community. Her grandfathers, M. F. Stancell and W. H. Buffaloe served as Sheriff and Register of Deeds of Northampton County for a number of years. Her father, J. J. Buffaloe, succeeded his father as Postmaster of the Jackson Post Office, where he also served for years.
The bright, sparkling Elizabeth married Lloyd C. Howell, son of W. C. and Cora Hill Howell of Seaboard, N. C. on April 22, 1924. To that union were born a daughter, Betty Drake on April 22, 1925 and a son, Robert Stancell on October 9, 1927.
Betty Drake married James Taylor Edwards, son of Mr. and Mrs. S. V. Edwards of Seaboard, N. C. on September 11, 1948. They had a lovely church wedding in the Seaboard Methodist Church with the Rev. J. P. Pegg, officiating.
Robert Stancell (Bobby), while a senior at Wake Forest College met his bride, Charles White Richardson, of Spring Hope, at Peace College. They were married on December 24, 1950.
To-day Elizabeth and Lloyd are the proud grandparents of four children: Richard Stevens Edwards, Dana K. Edwards, James Taylor Edwards, Jr. and Robert Stancell Howell, Jr.
Elizabeth received her education at East Carolina Teachers College. But she was born with executive ability and a sense of
news. She was employed for ten years or more by her brother-in-law, J. Roy Parker, owner and publisher of the Roanoke-Chowan newspapers. To quote her: “I had a wonderful time in my newspaper work. PEOPLE! PEOPLE, MORE PEOPLE.”
Reared in the Jackson Methodist Church, she moved her membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church, when the Howells moved to Seaboard in 1940. As usual, she plunged into the work of the church.
If Elizabeth is ready to “retire” on her laurels, she can do so and be remembered years hence because of her skillful work in organizing the ground-work and preparing manuscript for the history of the Seaboard Methodist Church. It was a gigantic task and is now achieved because of her ability to work with people and make them happy to work, too.
Lloyd, her husband, is also to be congratulated for being sympathetic and willing to go hungry sometimes, when Elizabeth was in the “throes” of the next chapter.
When a church member said to Elizabeth that a nice tribute should be paid her, she replied “Just Call Me a Work-Horse and Stop.” Instead, her fellow citizens would like to say: “Elizabeth, you are wealthy in your friends because you are a sincere, dedicated and energetic woman, who believes in serving your home, Church and Community.”A. H. Irvin Family
Alton Harvey Irvin joined the Seaboard Methodist Church with his wife, the former Helen Harris from near Jackson, in 1948. His father, Lee Irvin and grandmother, Rosa Irvin, attended the Concord Church. He is an operator in the paper mill in Roanoke Rapids. He and his wife have three children, Judy, Claire, and Harvey, Jr. Helen has taught in the Nursery
Department of the church for eight years. Judy joined the church in 1957 and sings in the choir each Sunday. The Hughes family is interested and faithful in Church work.The William J. Jones Family
The family of William J. Jones, better known as (Buck), was among the early families of Seaboard Methodism. Early Church records show that Buck's father and mother, the late William T. Jones and Patty Bridgers Jones, were active in church work. Mr. W. T. Jones served as Sunday School Superintendent and in other places of responsibility, too.
Of Mr. Jones first marriage, two sons, William J. (Buck) and E. Waldie Jones, were born. Following the death of his first wife, seven years after their marriage, Mr. Jones married Nannie Crocker, sister to the late Andrew Crocker. To this union, the following children were born:
Kathleen, the late Mrs. John Weaver.
Lillian, the late Mrs. W. Paul Edwards.
Julia, Mrs. Chesley Long of Newport News, Virginia.
Nannie, Mrs. Herman Long and her family live in Seaboard, where she has been a member of the Methodist Church since 1912. Four of her daughters joined Concord Church, and Faye (now Mrs. Pierce) joined the local church.
James J., deceased, married Miss Elma Stephenson, who lives in Seaboard with her invalid mother, Mrs. J. F. Stephenson.
Robert, married the former Mattie Kee and with their two sons, Billy and Bobby, have lived in Seaboard with the exception of a few years in Norfolk, Virginia.
Mr. Buck and Miss Fannie (Gay) were married in 1909 and are now living in Seaboard in the late William E. Harris homeplace, which they purchased on their return from Raleigh, North Carolina, in 1955. Their children—William Bruce, Green Gay, Helen Bridgers, Frances, Jerry Junious, Henry M.,
Christine Elizabeth and Raymond Edwin—joined the church in their early childhood. Five joined the Seaboard Methodist with their father and three joined their mother's faith, the Baptist Church.
The Jones children are loyal and active Church workers in their home towns. Mr. Jones continues his faithful attendance and is a member of the choir. Like his father, William T., Buck served as Sunday School Superintendent for a number of years during the 1922-1940 period.
Mr. Jones's mother, Pattie Bridgers Jones, was sister of W. H. Bridgers, who was a trustee at the time of the 1881 Deed for the land of the first Seaboard Methodist Church.
The Bridgers family were members of the early Pleasant Grove Church. Their children, Johnnie Sue, Rupert N. and Henry were members of the early Seaboard Methodist Church.
W. J. “Buck” Jones tells this story:
When a young boy, he served as sexton of the Seaboard Methodist Church. At one time, he found a five-dollar bill. He advertised over and over his find and no one claimed the five-dollar bill. He was told to keep it for his own.
He purchased his first pair of long trousers with his “big money.”The W. W. Jones Family
William Walter Jones was born near Reidsville, North Carolina in 1869. He married Maude Waynick, affectionately called “Casey,” and they came to Seaboard to live in 1911, where he served the Seaboard Railroad. They moved their membership to this church in 1917 and were faithful in their attendance. In 1920, his wife “Casey” and son died. Later he married Miss Ruth Long Rawls from Florida and she moved her membership to this Church in 1922. They both attended Sunday School and Church as long as they were able.
Mr. Jones passed away in October 1958.
Prior to Mrs. Jones's illness which has confined her to her home for many years, she was actively interested in her Church and in the Woman's Society of Christian Service.Mrs. Ann M. Kee
Mrs. Ann Kee, born August 1874, near Concord Methodist Church, is the daughter of Edward Boyd Matthews and Elizabeth Mondell Matthews. In her youth she joined Concord Church. She married J. H. Kee of Gumberry. To this union were born two sons and two daughters, all of whom joined the Baptist Church with their father, but Mrs. Kee has continued a loyal Methodist. Many years ago she moved to Seaboard and in 1948 she transferred her Church membership from Concord to Seaboard Methodist Church. Although she is not able to attend services very regularly now, she maintains her interest in her Church, her pastor and her fellow members. She is a member of the Lottie S. Barbee Sunday School Class.Joan Mae Kirkland
Joan Mae Kirkland was born July 22, 1939, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles M. Kirkland.
Even though all other members of her family are members of the local Baptist Church, Joan Mae joined the Seaboard Methodist in 1952.
She graduated from Seaboard High School with high honors and is now attending the University of Connecticut where she resides with her oldest sister, Vivian Kirkland Chabot and family, in Middlebury.
My Mother joined the Seaboard Methodist Church in the 1880 period when she was in her teens (then Mary Lucy Taylor, daughter of John Wesley and Sarah Capel Taylor). She came to Seaboard when only thirteen years old, boarded at the Peterson residence (the house later owned by the Will Jones family) in order to attend school which was conducted in the house we now know as the J. R. Bradley residence. The Bradley residence was where the meetings were first held when the Methodists organized and made plans to build.
It was in the year 1881 that the land was deeded to the trustees for the purpose of building a Church—Our Church. One of the trustees on the deed, T. S. Taylor, was my Mother's uncle. He was also the son of a local Methodist preacher, the Reverend Turner Stephen Taylor, serving this area in the early years of Methodism. Reverend Taylor was my Mother's grandfather.
After her schooling was finished here, my Mother transferred her Church membership to the Pleasant Grove Church where her father was a member. Mother next attended a private school in Jackson, North Carolina, then enrolled at Littleton College. On February 27, 1889, she married John Webb Leake, son of Randolph and Olivia Lassiter Leake of Rich Square, North Carolina, where they established their home. She then transferred her Church membership to Rich Square. To this union were born two daughters, Florence Webb Leake (later Mrs. Dean S. Crocker of Seaboard, North Carolina) and Lucy Taylor Leake (afterwards Mrs. Richard C. Spaine, Portsmouth, Virginia).
It was in 1904 that we moved back to Seaboard and again transferred our Church membership here. Of course it is during
this period that I have the very fondest memories of Mother and of our connections with our Church. I especially remember the Sundays when she always went with us to Sunday School and Church. When I recall those days, knowing she had carried on her Millinery Business throughout the week, as well as the affairs of a home and had met the demands of children in school, I now realize what an effort it must have been for her to set for us such a fine example of regular attendance. I also recall that in passing the Jessie Coates family on a Sunday morning—who were on the way to their Church just as we were to ours—that she would say to him: “Well, Jessie, we meet again on this path, and I hope we will meet above some day.”
Another instance I recall was the time the Woman's Missionary Society was organized here. Mrs. Aggie Edwards was elected President and Mother was chosen Vice-President, and soon afterwards Miss Aggie (as she was called by all) came by following a meeting to determine why Mother had not attended. When Mother told her she knew when she joined she would not always be able to attend, due to her business, she then asked the question usually asked: “Well Aggie, who did come to the meeting?” Miss Aggie's reply was: “Aggie and the Lord.”
It was when I was in my early teens that my Father joined the Seaboard Church with us (Sister and I had already joined). He had been of the Baptist Faith before. I remember how glad I was when he came in with us because there had been times I was sorry about our Church separation. I even wished I could, or wondered if I should, have gone with him. I think it wise for parents to be of the same faith because I know about my mixed-up feelings as a child. After he joined with us, the Methodist Church soon began its plans for the present church
building. Father was put on the Building Program Committee—on finances—and I've been told that he was a diligent collector. I do know he was very interested in the finishing of the Church which was almost completed when his health forced him to retire from his avocation of merchant and farmer. After his retirement we moved to Portsmouth, Virginia. His interest in this Church continued, and, though feeble, he came back to a special service after the Church was finished when Bishop Collins Denny was here. He never transferred his Church membership, so when he passed away in June, 1926, he was on this Register.
My Mother did transfer to Broad Street Methodist Church, Portsmouth, Virginia, but in 1942 decided to move back to Seaboard and once again transferred her membership to this Church. So when she passed on in March, 1952, she was a member of the Church in which she first took her vows.
The children of Dean S. and Florence Leake Crocker are: Mrs. Garnette Leake Crocker Tuten of Camden, North Carolina, and Dean Stanley Crocker, Jr. of Seaboard (They are included elsewhere in this book in the Crocker Family).
The Reverend Richard Clifton Spaine, Jr., son of Mrs. Lucy Leake Spaine, is at present the Director of Wesley Foundation of the Methodist Church at State Teachers College, Cedar Falls, Iowa. He entered the ministry through Broad Street Methodist Church, Portsmouth, Virginia soon after the death of his father.The Major Little Family
Few of our present members can point with pride and distinction to the long consecutive years as a member of Seaboard Methodist Church as can Major Little. He joined our Church October 12, 1902, and he and his family are all present members and residents of the community.
The Little family moved to Seaboard from the Concord section when Major was a very small boy. His parents, John and Molly Conwell Little, were hard-working farmers.
He was married to Gladys Hill in August 1926. She is the daughter of late Atlas Hilton and Johnie Tayor Hill of the Pleasant Grove Section. Mrs. Little joined the Pleasant Grove Church in early childhood and transferred her membership to our Church in 1940. With the task of rearing her family of six children and always willingly sharing her time and means with the members of Mr. Little's family, she has not been able to take an active part in Church activities. She encouraged her children to attend Church regularly and today they are all members of the Church and are loyal in attendance and activity. The children are as follows: Atlas Hilton Little II, who married Rachael Davis of Galatia in 1952. They have one son, James Hilton. Hilton is manager of the Seaboard Drug Company, a position he has held since 1944.
Janie Louise Little, her husband, Luther Hux, and their daughter, Laura Faye, have recently moved from Fort Belvoir, Virginia, to Seaboard. Mr. Hux is a retired Army Officer. They reside in the house known as the T. B. Rose home. Janie is a graduate of Roanoke Rapids School of Nursing.
In 1955 Carlton Little married Peggy Taylor of Seaboard. They are engaged in their own mercantile and gas business here.
Ruby Irene Little and Rachal Ann Little are present members of the choir and assist whenever they are needed in the Sunday School Department. Each is employed in secretarial work. Ruby is with I. B. White Appliance Company and Rachal is with the Northampton Welfare Department. John Talmadge Little has recently returned from two and a half years enlistment in the U. S. Navy.
Major Little worked as Road Supervisor of the North Carolina Highway Department for 43 years. He was retired April 1953.
Mr. Little at the age of 73 says: “I like my retirement and it has not been hard for me to fill each day with a good day's work.”Jenus Greene Long, Sr.
There have been four generations of Longs attending and serving faithfully in the Concord Church. Among the earliest members of the Concord congregation were Arthur Turner and Jane Sykes Long who, though Baptists, attended and reared their children at Concord from the pre-Civil War Period of 1848 until death and invalidism in 1870.
Their son, Thomas Person, together with his wife, Mary Bridgers, continued this tie with Concord Church for more than fifty years. In 1897, one of their sons, Jenus Greene Long, became a member of Concord Church where he served earnestly as assistant superintendent, superintendent, teacher, secretary-treasurer, and steward until 1948 when he moved his membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church. Here he has continued to serve as Steward and as Chairman of the Building Fund Board which helped to repair the church and to purchase the organ we all enjoy so much. His wife, Annie Laura Gay, though a Baptist, also worked diligently at Concord as teacher of the Adult Class from 1920 until 1948 and as leader of the Epworth League for a short period of time.
Their four children were active participants in all phases of church life at Concord, providing both music for the congregation and leadership in the young people's department. J. G. Long, Jr., continues to serve, being the only Minister ever produced from Concord and one of two from the Seaboard Methodist Charge. Helen Virginia and Inez Gay have married and
subsequently transferred their memberships to churches in other states. Joseph Buxton moved his membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1948, concluding a successive family connection with the Concord Church for a full century but continuing it in the Seaboard Methodist Church. His wife, Alice Millwood, joined the Seaboard Methodist Church by letter in 1957, from the First Baptist Church in Roanoke Rapids.The Howard Carlton Maddrey Family
All members of the Howard Carlton Maddrey family have made significant contributions to the development of Northampton County, the Seaboard Community and the Seaboard Methodist Church.
Howard Carlton Maddrey was born October 12, 1890. He is the oldest son of the late Joseph Thomas and Rowena Mittie Stephenson Maddrey. He was left with the support and the education of his brothers and sisters upon the death of his father in 1912. Mr. Maddrey was a merchant for many years, but later went into the cotton business, farming and insurance. He joined the Masonic Lodge and today is a distinguished Shriner. He has been active in the Democratic Party, county- and State-wide for many years.
On December 26, 1912, he married Martha Virginia Buffaloe, daughter of the late William Henry and Martha Rebecca Drake Buffaloe, Jackson, North Carolina. Born May 4, 1890, “Miss Martha” attended Littleton College and after teaching for two years, worked in the Northampton Bank in Jackson.
To this union were born four daughters. Dorothy Hill, born July 23, 1914, was married in 1932 to Everett Livingston Norton. They now live in Raleigh with their son, Everett, Jr. Virginia Drake, born June 2, 1918, was married in 1952 to James E. Brooks, Jr. They also live in Raleigh. Ellen Carlton,
born October 13, 1923, was married ot Charles Walker Davis, Jr., June 7, 1947. They are the parents of five attractive daughters and live in Raleigh. Jean Crocker, born April 7, 1927, was married to Hugh Hayes Wilson on December 20, 1947. They live in Clemson, S. C. All of the Maddrey girls had beautiful church weddings in the Seaboard Methodist Church with the exception of Dorothy, who had a lovely home wedding. The girls are all now active church workers in their home towns.
Martha B. Maddrey joined the Jackson Methodist Church in 1902. She moved her membership to Seaboard Methodist in February, 1912, and became an active member. Mr. Maddrey joined the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1917. Both “Miss Martha” and “Mr. Carl” are among the Church's best-loved members. Miss Martha taught the Adult Sunday School Class for a period of eight years; served as President of the Woman's Society of Christian Service and was a member of the choir for years.Mrs. Willie P. Matthews
Willie P. Matthews was born about five miles from Seaboard, North Carolina, on October 18, 1906, the daughter of Robert LeRoy Pritchard and Nettie Taylor Pritchard. In August, 1915—at the age of eight—she united with Pleasant Grove Methodist Church which was at that time on the Northampton Charge and grew up in the church in which her ancestors had worshipped since the church was founded in 1836. She served about fifteen years on the Board of Stewards and for several years as a teacher in the Sunday School while a member at Pleasant Grove.
Before her marriage on September 27, 1947 to Charlie Gray Matthews, a member of the Mount Carmel Baptist Church, she taught several years in the Public Schools of North Carolina. After her marriage, Mrs. Matthews became
acitve in the affairs of our Church and, since she had made Seaboard her home, she transferred her membership in 1949 from Pleasant Grove to Seaboard. She has served twice as President of the Woman's Society of Christian Service, one term of four years and another of three years. She also served as Vice-President of the Woman's Society of Christian Service of the Rocky Mount District for a period of three and one-half years.
Mrs. Matthews is at present teacher of the Lottie S. Barbee Sunday School Class in which capacity she has served for the past eight years.Mrs. C. M. Mitchell
The newest member of the Seaboard Methodist Church is Mrs. Vivian Proctor Mitchell, wife of the pastor, C. Maness Mitchell. They have three “disciples”—John Charles, 7; Andrew Maness, 5½; and Philip Keith, 4—and one daughter, Mary Anne, 8 months old. Soon after moving into the parsonage on July 2, 1958, Mrs. Mitchell transferred her membership, and the preparatory memberships of the children, from Aulander Methodist Church.
Mrs. Mitchell is a native of Rocky Mount, N. C., and an alumna of Louisburg College. Mr. Mitchell's home is near Buie's Creek, N. C.
At the age of nine Mrs. Mitchell joined Clark Street Methodist Church in Rocky Mount and served in various ways until she chose to share a lifetime of experiences with her preacher husband on November 10, 1949. Her first office in the Woman's Society of Christian Service was Secretary of Missionary Personnel of the New Bern District soon after becoming a bride. Later she served as president of the Aulander Woman's Society of Christian Service.
Mr. Mitchell is a graduate of Campbell College, received his A.B. degree from Trinity College of Duke University in 1941, and his B.D. degree from the Divinity School of Duke University in 1944. He joined the North Carolina Conference in 1943 at Rocky Mount, and received his first appointment, Atlantic Circuit, in June 1944. Since then he has held several pastorates in eastern North Carolina. While pastor of Beaufort Circuit he organized two new churches, Core Creek near Beaufort, and Community Methodist Church at Havelock. This latter church was merged with Havelock Methodist Church at the end of his first year to form a station, which he served two more years. For the past three summers he has served as director of the Rocky Mount District Junior Camp. He has served the Conference on various boards and is now president of the Methodist Ministers’ Credit Union.Jerry Moody
Jerry Moody moved to Seaboard in 1948 from the Concord section with his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Will Moody. They have not transferred their membership from the Concord Church; however, Lawrence and Jerry have attended the local church regularly.
Jerry joined the church September 22, 1957, under the Rev. Robert S. Gibson.The W. T. Norvell Family
The late Willie Thomas Norvell, Sr. was born in Harrellsville, Hertford County, North Carolina, June 10, 1862. He was the son of the late W. L. and Caroline Norvell. When he was a young man, he moved to Margarettsville where he met Rosa Thomas Garris and married her, May 17, 1888. Together they moved to Seaboard and opened a furniture and feed store.
- SEATED (LEFT TO RIGHT): Patricia Edwards, Charles Mitchell, Willie Edwards, Gene Taylor, Elaine Draper, Hank Ramsay. TEACHER: Shirley Warrick Taylor.
- SEATED (LEFT TO RIGHT): Mary Ann Mumford, Ann White, Claire Irvin, Joe Magee, Billy Reese Bullock, Steve Taylor, Steve Edwards. TEACHER: Elizabeth B. Bullock.
He next opened a grocery store and later opened a millinery shop.
There were three children. Willie Thomas, Jr., who lived in Seaboard and is now deceased. Annie Cleo, who married Millard Carpenter and lived in Margarettsville, is also deceased. Pearl Rosa was married to Forrest Harrelson and is now living in Portsmouth, Va. There were four grandchildren.
During his years in Seaboard, Mr. Norvell was a member of the local school board. At that time the school board selected and hired all teachers. He was Justice of the Peace, Mayor of Seaboard, Superintendent of the Sunday School at Seaboard Methodist Church, and was a Steward at the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1908.
Mr. Norvell died February 14, 1917, and was buried in Margarettsville with the members of the Masonic Lodge conducting the service. His body was later moved to the Seaboard cemetery. Rosa Thomas Garris, his wife, died in 1936 and was buried in the Seaboard Cemetery.The Bertha Joyner Parker Family
In a previous interview with “Miss Bertha” concerning information for her distinctive nomination of “Mother of the Year” from the Seaboard's Woman Club and community she said: “I was born in the Methodist Church.” According to the research on her ancestry, we find that the statement is literally true.
Miss Bertha's father was H. L. Joyner. He was actively connected with the Seaboard Methodist Church as is shown on our Church records in the early 1880's. The old Pleasant Grove records designate her grandparents, Edward Allen and Virginia Baraham Joyner, as active in the early years of Pleasant Grove Church. H. L. Joyner's marriage to the former Miss
Helen Bridgers was among the first Church weddings recorded in the Seaboard Church history, May 25, 1886. Mrs. Joyner was actively connected with her church until her death in 1894. Mr. Joyner was married for the second time to Miss Mattie Reid of the Concord section and to this union five children were born.
Mr. Joyner served thirty-one years as an elected public servant—a member of the North Carolina State Legislature and Sheriff of Northampton for several decades. He died in 1958 at the age of 91 years.
Miss Bertha was married to Carl Putnam Parker in 1913. He was the son of Israel and Sarah Gay Parker of the Margarettsville section. Following his graduation from the Medical College of Virginia, World War I interrupted his first practice at Garysburg, North Carolina. He served two years as a Medical Officer in Field Hospital in France. Upon his return from France, Dr. Carl Parker established a practice in Seaboard and built a lovely family home, where Miss Bertha lives today to receive her family and host of friends. His life was rich and rewarding with his full medical practice. Dr. Parker felt that his patients were “his people.”
He was a member of the building committee for our present Church and served his Church well. In civic affairs, Dr. Parker served in the State Legislature, as trust of the University of North Carolina, was instrumental in the development of the first good roads in Northampton County, and in the construction of the present High School building. The Masonic Lodge held an important place in his life. He was a Shriner and Knight's Templar. The Masonic Lodge still meets in the hall of the second floor of the store building he owned. The first floor is occupied today by R. C. Worrell, a merchant, and owned by Mrs. Parker.
In 1928, Dr. Parker, at the age of 36, came to the end of a useful life and surely one filled with service to mankind. The Parker children today reflect in their lives the influence of the Christian life and noble character of their parents. They are as follows:
|Helen Bridgers||Mrs. Clarence McKittrick Smith of Newberry, South Carolina.|
|Carl Putnam, Jr.||A beloved physician in Falls Church, Virginia.|
|Sarah Constance||The wife of the late David J. Hanse of Raleigh, North Carolina.|
|Marshall Joyner||Seneca, South Carolina, is proud to claim him as “Man of the Year”, State Senator and a successful business man.|
Miss Bertha's grandchildren who look forward to their visit to Seaboard are as follows:
|James W. McKittrick Smith||Bertha Joyner Hanse|
|Caroline Bridgers Smith||Martha Baraham Parker|
|Virginia Penn Parker||Anna Bowen Parker|
|Carl Putnam Parker III||Susan Gay Parker|
|John Clarkson Parker||Alice Nimmons Parker|
|David J. Hanse, Jr.|
When Dr. John W. Parker, Jr. hung out his first shingle as a practicing physician in Seaboard, 30 years ago, May, 1958, he was no stranger to the Seaboard community. For more than 150 years, Dr. Parker's ancestors had lived in and around the Concord Church area, adjacent to the town of Seaboard. The ancestral home is owned by Dr. John W. Parker, Jr., who has renovated it and it is now used for rest and relaxation. As longtime farmers, they had done business with Seaboard Merchants and ginners. The Parker family was well-known in Northampton County, North Carolina, and in Greenville County Virginia.
Dr. Parker was born April 6, 1900, in Emporia, Virginia, Greenville Co.
His parents were J. Wesley Parker, son of John Thomas Parker, and Grace Darling Vincent, a descendant of the Vincents, Arringtons, and Masons of Virginia. The Masons played a leading role in our nation's fight for independence.
Dr. Parker's ancestors on both sides had deep roots in the Methodist Church, dating back to the early history of Methodism in this country.
Grace Parker, Dr. Parker's mother was a firm believer in the importance of an education. She put young John in school when he was five years old and kept him in school and college for 22 years.
On May 30, 1927, the J. Wesley Parkers saw their son graduate with honors from the Medical College of Virginia. He then interned in Grace Hospital, Richmond, Virginia, and Baptist Hospital, Winston-Salem, N. C.
While in Winston-Salem, Dr. Parker met Josephine Ballou Dixon, daughter of E. W. Dixon of the Imperial Tobacco Company, and Mrs. Irene Ballou Dixon.
This charming young debutante, educated at St. Mary's and Salem and Stratford, caught Dr. Parker's eye. As a result, they were married June 27, 1928, in Richmond, Virginia. Soon after, Dr. Parker and Josephine came to Seaboard where they lived in the home of Mrs. Bertha Parker, until their own home was completed in August 1929, next door to the W. R. Vick family.
Dr. and Mrs. Parker immediately transferred their membership to the Seaboard Methodist Church; Dr. Parker, from Monumental Methodist, Emporia, 1928, and Mrs. Parker, from Centenary Methodist, Winston-Salem in 1928.
Mrs. Dixon, Josephine's mother, came to live with Dr. and Mrs. Parker in 1930. Mr. Dixon died in 1923. Mrs. Dixon transferred her membership from Centenary Methodist Church, Winston-Salem, N. C., to the Seaboard Church in 1935, and remained a loyal member until her death on March 19, 1950.
The arrival of the Young Parkers in Seaboard in 1928 started the beginning of a useful life together. They entered wholeheartedly into the activities of the Church, community and county. Dr. Parker served as Chairman and member of the Northampton County Board of Education for 20 years. For a long time, he was a member of the County Board of Health. He also served on the Seaboard School Board and as president of the Lion's Club, Local Surgeon Seaboard Air Line, and President of Surgeon Association, 1958.
Josephine Parker has also made a significant contribution to her Church and community. She says that most of her 30 years in Seaboard have consisted of “begging” campaigns for Church suppers, community dinners, rummage sales, bazaars, and other fund-raising projects.
She has indeed done faithful service in this capacity, but her talents have also been used in teaching young people and working in the Church Women's organizations.
As a physician, Dr. Parker has become a valued friend in the lives of many Seaboard families. He has never been known to say “No” when a call for medical help came. He has helped to heal thousands of sick bodies. And when death came to those beyond earthly help, Dr. Parker has stood by the side of the bereaved as a sorrowing friend. No one knows better than a physician that in the midst of life, we are in death.
As a faithful member of the Seaboard Methodist Church, Dr. Parker has served long and well as trustee and steward. Sunday mornings usually find Dr. Parker and Josephine at
Sunday School and at the Service of Worship, still pursuing their life of service started 30 years ago.The Bettie Futrelle Pruden Family
Bettie Futrelle Pruden, daughter of Mildred Elizabeth Miller and Matt Futrelle, was born near Woodland, North Carolina, February 25, 1870. In later years she and her sister, Nannie, often came to Seaboard to visit with her oldest sister, Nettie, who was married to J. G. L. Crocker.
It was while on one of these visits that she met Will S. Pruden, who lived near Seaboard and was a clerk in Buxton's store in Jackson. They were married November 25, 1881, and lived in Seaboard. Bettie brought her letter from the Methodist Church near Woodland to Seaboard Methodist Church, where she served faithfully. For many years, she was a member of the choir. She was a willing worker in every activity of the church. Will was a Baptist, but they worked together for both churches in many capacities.
To them were born four children: Mary, Howard, Mildred and Randolph. All four of them followed their mother to the Methodist Church and joined when young. Mr. Pruden died in 1912 and Bettie was left to rear and educate her children, and she did an outstanding job.
Renting out her house to Maie and Fenton Crocker, she leased the village hotel from Garland Grubbs. Because of the excellent table Miss Bettie “set,” salesmen from Norfolk, Virginia, to Norlina, North Carolina, made it their business to spend at least one night per week at the Seaboard Hotel.
Miss Bettie also ran a millinery shop in cooperation with Mrs. Mattie Gay.
After a full and eventful life, Miss Bettie passed away on November 6, 1930, at the home of her daughter, Mildred
Pruden Moore, Seaboard, and was buried beside her husband in the Seaboard cemetery.
Mary, the oldest child, married William Vincent, a Vultare farmer, in a double ceremony with her sister, Mildred, who married Robert L. Moore, a conductor on the Seaboard railroad, June 17, 1919.
Through the years, Mary has reared three lovely daughters: Barbara, Marilyn and Mildred Ann (Billie). She has served faithfully in the Oak Grove Methodist Church, as organist, Sunday School teacher, member of the Board of Trustees, leader in the Woman's Society of Christian Service at Oak Grove and in the Northampton Sub-District—and as the finance chairman of the new Oak Grove Church, dedicated in 1950.
Educated at Littleton College and Peace College, Mary has put her talents to work for the good of her home, church, community and county.
Howard, married to Mary Brown of Garysburg, November 10, 1923, passed away at his home in Roanoke Rapids, July 6, 1958. He was an active member of the Presbyterian Church, Mayor of Roanoke Rapids for 11 years, and on the Board of Directors of the Union Mission Church. His wife and one son, W. H. Pruden, Jr., born April 15, 1925, survive him.
Mildred and Bob Moore had two children, Mildred Lee and Robert Lee. On their tenth anniversary, Bob died suddenly, leaving Mildred to care for the small children and her invalid mother, Miss Bettie. Death struck again in the Moore family on April 28, 1944, when Robert Lee (Buddy) was killed on a routine flight in the Marine Air Force at Jacksonville, Florida.
In June, 1941, Mildred married again—to James H. Mayfield of Roanoke Rapids.
Randolph served in the Methodist Church until he was married to Margaret Sloan of Raleigh in 1928 when he took his letter to the Presbyterian Church with Margaret. They are now members of Covenant Presbyterian at Charlotte where they make their home, and he is Accountant for the Western Division of N. C. State Revenue Department.The Ramsay Family
The Ramsay Family came from Margarettsville to the Seaboard area in the mid-eighteen hundreds, and records do not show any affiliation with local Churches. We do know, however, that Dr. J. N. Ramsay was intensely interested in Pleasant Grove Methodist Church and may have been a member there. He attended services when his career as a country Doctor permitted, solicited funds for Church activities and had his four children christened. His wife, Betty Harvell Phillips Ramsay, became a member of Pleasant Grove in 1906, a short time after his death.
The first member of the family to join the Seaboard Methodist Church was John Thomas Ramsay, eldest son of Dr. J. N., who moved his membership from Pleasant Grove in 1886. He was seventeen years old at the time and perhaps the very young church was a challenge to his own youth.
In 1912, Lillian Balderson Ramsay, bride of Joseph H., brought her membership from Milden Presbyterian Church in Sharps, Virginia. In 1917, during a revival, her husband joined the Church by profession of faith. Together, they began a most exemplary Church life. Joseph H. Ramsay served the Church as Sunday School Superintendent, teacher and Church Steward. He is best remembered, however, for his faithful attendance which continued until his death in December of 1945. Lillian Ramsay has entered into every phase of Church
activities during the past 40 years—Sunday School Teacher, Church Choir and W.S.C.S. President, to name only a few.
In 1928, Francis Phillips Ramsay, eldest child of Lillian and Joseph H., became a member of the Church by baptism and profession of faith. She was followed by her three brothers: John Morrison in 1933; Joseph H., Jr. and Claude Kitchin in 1940. In 1948, the Church received Mabel Williams, wife of Joseph H., Jr.; in 1951, Bertha Braswell, wife of John Morrison; and in 1952, Joseph M. Magee, husband of Frances. About this time, Claude Kitchin moved his membership to the Aulander Baptist Church.
The children have followed in the footsteps of their parents to some degree. Frances and Joseph M. Magee have filled teaching assignments and Morrison has served on the board of Stewards. Each member of the family continues to contribute of their time and interest in many of their Church activities and to receive the blessing and fellowship of this institution.
The family's third generation began its association with the Church with the baptism of Joseph Ramsay Magee in March of 1958.The Spencer Family
The Spencers in our Church—Mrs. John Paul Spencer, Sr. (formerly Roxie Elizabeth Ivey) and her youngest son, John Paul Spencer, Jr. (J. P.),—can trace their connection with Seaboard Methodism back to the first Church conference minutes when our Church was in the Garysburg Charge, Murfreesboro District of the Virginia Annual Conference. The minutes of January 6, 1886, reveal that William Henry Ivey (father of Mrs. J. P. Spencer, Sr. and maternal grandfather of J. P. Spencer, Jr.) was on the Board of Circuit Stewards, was present, and was a signer of the Resolutions drawn up by the
Board of Stewards of the Garysburg Circuit on January 2, 1886, outlining the means of financial support for the newly-formed Seaboard Church. The Resolutions also set forth the consequences to the members who failed to support the church.
William Henry Ivey was born on March 30, 1839, and died October 30, 1911. His wife, Roxie E. Hill, was born April 25, 1849, and died November 15, 1895. They were both life-long members of Pleasant Grove Methodist Church. William Henry Ivey, known and admired as Bill Ivey, was a school teacher, Master Mason, Church and civic leader, and southern farmer who even had a horse-drawn circular cotton gin on his own farm. The Ivey Public School was located on his farm and named in his honor and the Ivey Farm on the Jackson-Conway Highway, which he owned, still bears his name. His wife was an easy-going, quiet, gentle woman whose obituary, published in the County News, read: “The deceased professed faith in Christ and joined Pleasant Grove M. E. Church at the age of 15 and was a devoted Christian to the day of her death.” This couple was married on February 2, 1869 and had eight children, seven girls and one boy. All the children joined the Methodist Church except one, who joined the Baptist, and she later married a Methodist. All the other Methodist girls married Baptists, creating a continuous succession of split families even to this day. The son, John L. Ivey, joined the Methodist Church and married a Sharon Methodist, Maude Garriss.
Mrs. Verda Laura Ivey (sister of Mrs. J. P. Spencer, Sr.), who married Millard Filmore Long, joined the Pleasant Grove Church and transferred to our Church where she remained a member until her death. Three of their daughters—Roxie (Mrs. Emmett H. Cuthrell), Ida (Mrs. Thurman M. Bullock), and Mary (Mrs. Henry L. Woodard) became members of our Church and transferred after marriage. The youngest
son, William Ivey Long, joined our Church as a boy, served for a period of time as Secretary of the Sunday School, and transferred only after he had married and become a Professor at Winthrop College, Rock Hill, South Carolina, where he now resides.
Mrs. John Paul Spencer, Sr., born February 14, 1882, joined the Sharon Methodist Church and was baptized on August 8, 1895, by Pastor A. J. Parker. She remained a Sharon member until September 7, 1912, when she transferred to Emporia, Virginia. She transferred to our Seaboard Church in March, 1915, and has been a faithful and devoted member for the past 43 years. During the most of this time she has been active in the affairs of the Woman's Society of Christian Service. She married John Paul Spencer, son of John W. and Mary Smith Spencer, on April 28, 1904, who at the time of his death on May 9, 1957, was a life-Deacon of the Seaboard Baptist Church. This devoted couple celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary in 1954 and proved beyond a doubt that denominational differences need be no handicap to a happily married pair. To this union were born four children—Leon Pharr, Olivia Gertrude, William Herman, and John Paul, Jr. Leon and Herman followed their father and the Spencers before them, all of whom were Baptists. Gertrude and J. P. followed their mother and the Iveys before them and joined with the Methodists.
J. P. broke all tradition and became the first known Spencer male to join other than a Baptist Church when he was baptized in 1928, at the age of 10, by Reverend Frank Culbreth in the Seaboard Methodist Church, where he has continued his membership to this date. His close connection with the Baptists continued as he attended and graduated from Wake Forest College. In 1949, during Reverend J. P. Pegg's Ministry, J. P. was
made a Steward of the Seaboard Methodist Church, and later a Trustee, in which capacities he still serves. Since returning from three and one-half years in the Service of his country during World War II, he has taught the Men's Bible Class and served one year as President, has been Secretary of the Official Board for several terms, has acted as Recording Steward at a number of Quarterly Conferences, and has attended several of the North Carolina Annual Conferences—once being selected as Charge Delegate. He is Past Master and Past Secretary of the Seaboard Masonic Lodge and is Past Secretary and current President of the Lions Club of Seaboard.
Gertrude, now Mrs. Ralph Barnes of Jackson, joined our Church as a girl and remained a member until her transfer to Jackson where she and her daughter are members of the Jackson Methodist Church. Her husband and son are members of the Jackson Baptist Church. Herman, after his marriage, transferred from Baptist to Methodist and is now an active and enthusiastic member of Louisburg Methodist Church. Leon, now Comptroller of the Baptist State Convention in Raleigh, is a Deacon in the Hayes Barton Baptist Church and Clerk of the Raleigh Association.
The Spencer Family is proud of its religious heritage—of the strong Methodist ties from the Ivey or Maternal side, and of the strong Baptist ties from the Spencer or Paternal side. Even though the “Split-Family” (Some Methodist—Some Baptist) has continued to exist to the fourth generation, they feel doubly benefited and enriched by the influences from these two great branches of the Protestant Faith, and are trying to follow in the footsteps of their forefathers by finding places of service within their churches.Mrs. E. H. Stephenson Family
Mrs. E. H. Stephenson, better known in our community as “Miss Maggie,” is a faithful and loyal member. She moved her membership to Seaboard Methodist Church in 1916 from Concord, where she joined in 1908. She married E. H. Stephenson, son of Samuel and Mary Gay Stephenson. He is a member of Seaboard Baptist Church. “Mr. Ed” has been confined to his home as an invalid for eight years. His spirit of patience and of forbearance is an inspiration to all of us who visit him.
To this union were born two children. Mary Frances (now Mr. Thomas J. Draper) and Edward Vassar Stephenson. Their son served as Captain in the U. S. Marine Corps and was killed on Iwo Jima, World War II. A beautiful tribute is paid to this fine young man elsewhere in this book.
Edward was married to Miss Mary Helen Shelton of Madison, North Carolina, who is now Mrs. Richard V. Baker of Miami, Florida.
Mary Frances married Thomas J. Draper, of Boykins, Virginia, in 1950. They have recently moved in their new home, next door to their parents. Their daughter, Elaine, is in the second grade of school.
Upon Mary Frances’ graduation from East Carolina Teachers College in 1946, she taught four years in North Carolina Schools. Mary Frances and Jack are a wide awake young couple, who have supported their church as well as all community activities. Jack, a graduate of North Carolina State College, is now employed as Assistant Cashier of the Farmers Bank of Seaboard. He is our present Sunday School Superintendent. Mary Frances, who has taught in the Intermediate Department for the past nine years, is now Secretary to the Official Board of the Church. Each of the Drapers has had the high honor of serving in the Masonic and Eastern Star Orders;
Mary Frances, as Worthy Matron and Jack, as Worshipful Master.
“Miss Maggie” is the daughter of the late Thomas Bragg and Mary John Foster Vassar. They and their early descendants were one of the outstanding families of the Concord Church. Among Mr. and Mrs. Vassar's records are two worthy achievements: Educated a Chinese student in his foreign land and sponsored an orphan through a mission school in India. Mr. Vassar, a widower for twenty-four years, died at the age of 92. He was survived by four children, seven grandchildren and one great-grandchild.The M. R. Stephenson Family
The late Dr. Matt Ransom Stephenson was born about three miles from Seaboard, on November 22, 1859. He was the son of William T. and Martha Jane Barnes Stephenson. He married Nannie Belle Futrell of Woodland, daughter of Matt and Mildred Miller Futrell, in 1889. The couple spent their entire married life in Seaboard, where both were active in the life of the community.
During “Doctor's” life in Seaboard he practiced medicine, farmed, operated a drug store and a saw mill. He was a Steward in the Methodist Church, a director of the Farmer's Bank, a member of the Seaboard High School Board of Trustees, and was instrumental in getting the County Health Department established in Northampton County. Dr. Stephenson died October 23, 1924 at the age of 65.
“Miss Nannie” (as she was so often called) was born on March 23, 1868. She moved to Seaboard as a young bride and became a member of the Seaboard Methodist Church. She was devoted to her church, home, and community and worked tirelessly for the betterment of each. Her official job was organist,
but she could always be counted upon to do what the occasion required, whether to lead the choir, put the flowers in the church, fix the communion, inspire the missionary society or act as sexton. She died September 8, 1921 at the age of 53.
From this union there were two children: Lottie Bell and Matt Ransom Stephenson II.
Lottie was born on July 2, 1893 in Seaboard. She was a lifelong member of the Seaboard Methodist Church, having joined in early girl-hood. Faithful in attendance and all good works, she was an organist for 31 years. Like her mother, she performed the tasks that needed to be done. Nothing was too strenuous or too humble for her to undertake for her church. She was a charter member of the Seaboard Home Demonstration Club, the Woman's Club and the Seaboard Chapter of Eastern Star. She was a member of the American Legion Auxiliary and a member of the Northampton County Library Board.
Lottie was married on July 5, 1916, to Walter Dorsey Barbee of Morrisville, Wake County, North Carolina, who was at that time principal of Seaboard High School. From this union there was one child, Nancy Hudson Barbee. In her early childhood Nancy was baptized in the Methodist Church, but moved her membership to Christ Church in Raleigh after her marriage.
Nancy was married in Seaboard Methodist Church on December 21, 1940, to William Henry Weed Crawford II of Raleigh. They have five children: William Henry Weed III, Nancy Primrose, Walter Barbee, Carol Stephenson and Matt Norris. The Crawfords live in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina and are communicants of All Saints Episcopal Church of that city.
Lottie Stephenson Barbee died on August 5, 1956.
Matt Ransom Stephenson, the son, was born in Seaboard in 1898. He was baptized at an early age in the Seaboard Methodist Church but after his marriage to Ethel Marshall, of Raleigh, on May 17, 1924, he became a communicant of Christ Church in that city. From this union there were two girls: Susan Marshall, now Mrs. John B. Van Metts of Masonboro Sound, North Carolina and Nancy, now Mrs. William Worth White of Raleigh.
Sue Stephenson Metts has two children: John B. Van Metts III, and Susan Marshall Metts. Nancy has three children, William Worth White II, Joel Marshall White, and Matt Ransom Stephenson White.
Matt Ransom Stephenson died on May 29, 1931 at Raleigh, North Carolina.The Charles Booker Vick Family
Charles Booker Vick was born May 7, 1775, in Margarettsville, Northampton County. He was the son of William Parham Vick, better known as Major Vick, because of having served as a Major in the Confederate Army.) As a boy he became a member, and attended regularly the Sharon Methodist Church, as his parents had before him. He received his education at Trinity College. In 1898 he came to Seaboard and worked as a clerk in the Joe Maddrey store and later in R. W. Edwards’ store. On December 6, 1899, he was married to Miss Annie Wyche Newsome of Emporia, Virginia. They made their home in Seaboard for a while. In 1908, Booker moved his membership from Sharon to Seaboard. In 1909, they went to Margarettsville to live where he went into the mercantile and later the farming business. His church membership was transferred back to Sharon this same year. He was
always very active in the work of the church and gave liberally of his means. He became a steward of Sharon Church in 1914 and remained in that capacity until his death December 4, 1922.
Not only was Booker a leader in his church, but was an outstanding man in his community and civic life and most generous to those less fortunate than he.
To Annie and Booker were born three sons: Wilbur Lawrence, Charles Lovell and Warren Kilgo. These boys were “brought up” in the church. Each Sunday they dressed in their “Sunday Clothes” and rode with their parents in the “Buggy”, Lawrence and Lovell standing on the axle behind and Warren seated in the foot, to Sunday School and church services at Sharon. These boys being reared on the farm grew up to be strong, vigorous men.
Charles Lowell received his education from Trinity College (now Duke University) and Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia. He is now a practicing physician in Seaboard. On December 19, 1931, he was married to Olive Jennette of Wayne County, who was a teacher in the local school. To this union was born two children: Charles Booker Vick II and June Carolyn Vick.
Both Lovell and Olive transferred their church membership to Seaboard where later they were joined by the membership of their children at the tender ages of 10 and eight.
Charles Booker received his education at Duke University and is now employed by the Forest Utilization Research Division of the Southeastern States.
June Carolyn received her education from the Woman's College of the University of North Carolina and is now teaching Home Economics in the Goldsboro city schools.
The fourth generation of the William Robert Vick family is now in the service of the Seaboard Methodist Church through the work of his grandson, Reid Vick Harris and his children. This service began with Robert William Vick himself who came to the Seaboard community in late 1899 after his second marriage.
He was born July 3, 1858, on a farm near Margarettsville, North Carolina. His parents, Major W. P. and Agnes Bottoms Vick, were stern and dedicated people who were determined that their large flock of sons and daughters would grow up “in the fullness of the Lord.”
Consequently, all members of the Vick family, led by the old Major himself, joined Sharon Methodist Church, organized in 1839. So far as is known, no Vick ever “left the faith”, though some may have “strayed”.
“Mr. Bob”, as the Seaboard community respectfully called him, was the eldest of Major Vick's children. He was “untutored” in so far as formal schooling was concerned. But few men of his time were as “learned”. As a Biblical scholar, he had few peers.
He followed the occupation of his father—farming. In his mid-fifties, however, he announced to one and all that he was “retiring” so he could enjoy life. Moreover, he did retire and spent a great deal of his time in such pursuits as hunting, fishing, reading and visiting around.
But his chief interests were in reality the welfare of the Seaboard Methodist Church, to which he transferred around 1900, and the needs of the less fortunate children in the Seaboard community.
William Robert Vick married twice, first to Alice Reid, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Alex Reid, an old Concord family.
To that union were born: William, Maie, Zena and Verlie Starr. William A. Vick and Verlie Starr Stancell are the only survivors.
After the death of Alice Reid, Mr. Bob married Maria H. Goode, daughter of Captain James B. Goode and Elizabeth Rogers Goode on May 25, 1899. To that union were born: Ruth, Robert and Bruce. Ruth Vick O'Brien is the only survivor of that marriage.
On March 1, 1934, Mr. Bob passed away at his Seaboard home. He had lived long and well, meeting the vicissitudes of life with an indomitable spirit. As a devoted member of the Seaboard Methodist Church, he served as a trustee for many years as well as teacher of the Adult Class.
His passing was like the fall of a great oak. For so many years he had stood as a shielding force in the life of his family, his church and his community. Then suddenly in the 76th year of his life, a powerful gust swept him on.
Of this man who loved the simple life, a friend to all, his former Pastor, Rev. Frank Culbreth, wrote in a letter to his daughter, Maie Vick Crocker:
Mr. Vick had a number of excellent qualities, and I believe no defects in his character. He had a winsome personality. He was strong in his likes and dislikes. He was man enough and good enough, when convinced that he was wrong in an opinion, to acknowledge it and to make amends. He was thoughtful and always penitent in spirit.Zena Vick Harris
Zena Vick Harris was the first of “Mr. Bob's” children to pass on. Born on June 29, 1889, she died on September 8, 1925 after a long and valiant fight against the scourge of cancer.
Her beloved friend and neighbor, Bertha Joyner Parker, has written thus of Zena's life, which ended in her 36th year:
In a very short span of life, Zena attained great heights of spiritual growth. She was the second daughter of William Robert Vick and Alice Reid Vick. Her mother died when Zena was less than 3 years old, so her childhood was spent in the lovely home of her paternal grandparents, Major and Mrs. W. P. Vick of near Margaretsville, North Carolina. In time her father re-married and Zena, with the family, moved to Seaboard, North Carolina. She joined the Seaboard Methodist Episcopal Church and remained a loyal member until death. Her education was received from governesses, public schools and Littleton Female College, a Methodist school located at Littleton, North Carolina.
She was happily married to James Luther Harris of Seaboard, North Carolina, and became the mother of one daughter, Sarah Alice, and three sons, William Randolph Harris, James L. Harris, Jr., and Reid Vick Harris.
Zena Vick Harris was lovely of person, gracious, vivacious, and charming in personality—generous and willing to aid where need was found. Her doctor (Dr. Carl P. Parker) felt free at any time to go to her for help for his needy patients. She loved music and was happy to sing in her Church choir. Her work for her generation embraced all forms of Church and community work.
In spite of great suffering she was enabled by her great faith, to say, ‘Thy Will be done.’Thomas Russell Everett, Jr.
On July 22, 1941, “Mr. Bob's” grandson, Thomas Russell Everett, Jr., son of Ruth Vick Everett and Thomas R. Everett, met a tragic death in the 17th year of his life. A graduate of Seaboard High School, 1940, and also of Georgia Military Academy, Atlanta, 1941, Tom had already registered at North Carolina State College for the fall session.
From his infancy, Tom was a serious youngster. “Solemn as a jedge”, said Matt Jones, his nurse. In his 15th year, he joined
the Seaboard Methodist Church, taking an active part in Sunday School as well as Epworth League activities. Many of his friends remember his “addresses” before the Epworth League.
Despite his serious nature, Tom thoroughly enjoyed life. He loved his “workshop” where he, Vaughan Crocker and Reid Harris made all sorts of things and conducted unusual and, sometimes, dangerous experiments. On one occasion, Tom and Reid made “dynamite” and almost blew up the old teacherage. On another occasion, they were “knocked out” for nearly a day from the effects of their experiment in “manufacturing” ether.
With the help of his father, Tom also built a “sea-going” boat on which he made a trip through the Dismal Swamp. On the day of his death, the newly painted boat, with its white sails spread wide, stood ready for another adventurous trip.
But Tom's last adventure was made alone. But to those who knew him, it must have been the most glorious adventure of all.Robert Edward Vick
Robert Edward Vick, second child of William Robert Vick and Maria H. Vick, was born May 27, 1902, in the old family home in Seaboard. People often said he looked like a “Rogers”—his mother's family. But there was a lot of “Vick” in him, too.
After graduating from North Carolina State College in 1922, young Bob taught school in Margarettsville for a number of years. Then he took up farming and remained a successful farmer until his death, April 7, 1950.
Bob, who was the apple of his mother's eye, never married until her death in April, 1937. In May of that year, he married Ida Vivian Hayward, Weldon, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E. L. Hayward. She taught with him in Margarettsville and thus started a long romance.
Bob and Ida took up their life in the old Vick home. Their nearly 13 years together led to many happy activities in the church and community. Both were Methodists and faithful members of the Seaboard Church.
It has been said that few men were ever as well-loved as Robert Vick—by both the white and the colored members of the community. The welfare of his tenants was of paramount importance in his life.
On Easter morning, April 9, 1950, just before his funeral, a delegation of colored tenants arrived at his house with a letter they had composed. Since it was so typical of Robert's life, it was read at the funeral service and is presented here as written.
Margarettsville, N. C.
April 9, 1950
This is to certify that Mr. Vick is departed from the farm of Rogers Quarter. He were a good man and a kind friend to us all. We never ask him for a favor that he didn't do it with a smile. We love you but the Lord love you best.
From the FarmMaie Vick Crocker
A cold misty rain was gently falling as we entered the Seaboard Methodist Church on the afternoon of November the third, 1955, to attend the last rites over our beloved friend and relative, Maie Vick Crocker. The chill of the afternoon deepened the despair in our sorrowing hearts. For weeks we had known the end was near—that God in his mercy would soon ease her suffering. But the termination of her long and useful life on the evening of November the first, in Duke Hospital, had left us stunned and dazed, friends and relatives alike.
The end of a life, no matter how full or how rich, how long or how short, brings agonizing grief to those left behind. It is always difficult to accept in our Gethsemane those powerful words of our Lord as he prayed in the Garden: “Father, not our will, but Thy will be done.”
But the beauty and radiant sweetness of that last solemn hour with her gave all a feeling of re-consecration and re-dedication. For hers was no usual funeral service. Instead, it was an assemblage of friends gathered to pay honor and tribute to one whose life and memory would never die. It was an occasion where we accepted her as with us in spirit, though no longer visible. It was an occasion where Our Heavenly Father welcomed her home with these words: “Well done, good and faithful servant: Enter thou into the joy of the Lord.”
The magnificent tribute by her former pastor and friend, Reverend L. A. Watts, was a thing of beauty and will always remain a joy forever to those who heard him. His brilliant portrayal of her life and the life of her husband, George Fenton Crocker, will long be remembered. Their nearly fifty years together were characterized by warm generosity, respect for people and their feelings, a belief in community responsibility, and a triumphant faith in God. For them, the institutions of the home, the family, and the church provided a way of life that forever should be nourished and strengthened. Miss Maie and Mr. Fenton lived a life that was a repository for the highest moral, ethical, cultural and religious standards. There was no place in their lives for shabbiness of conduct, false standards, envy, malice or hate.
On the eve of her last operation, she said to the nurses and doctors gathered about her bed: “I want you to meet my son, Reid.” Then she added: “He's really my nephew, Reid Vick Harris. But I've had him since his mother passed on when he
was such a little boy. I feel he belongs to me and I belong to him, for my mother died, too, when I was a little child.”
Born May 25, 1885, near Margarettsville, the second child of W. R. Vick and Alice Reid Vick, she had achieved her three-score and ten. But she never grew old. With the optimism of Robert Browning, she said: “Grow old along with me: the best is yet to be; The last of life, for which the first was made.”Cecil Bruce Vick
Cecil Bruce Vick, the youngest child of William Robert and Maria H. Vick was a graduate of the Georgia School of Technology, 1924, and a highly respected executive of the Florida Power and Light Company, Miami, Florida, when he met his tragic death on February 25, 1956, in his home there.
Because he had remained a member of the Seaboard Methodist Church all the 50-odd years of his life, the final rites were held in the church on March 1, 1956.
The day was bright with early spring when Bruce came back to his old home in Seaboard, North Carolina. It is a small community of good people, most of them Bruce's old friends and his remaining relatives.
Even though Bruce had been away more than thirty years, the community was bowed with shock and grief over his untimely and tragic passing. Everybody loved the rather shy and brilliant friend of their youth. They gathered in sorrow on the streets to recall incidents of his childhood and youth. They came in droves to express their sorrow. They sat with him as he lay in state in our Methodist Church, the church of his father. They put away their business and farming and attended the simple and comforting service before the altar of God. And they went with him to his final resting place in the community cemetery.
The great Peter Marshall once wrote: ‘I find comfort in the belief that in the glorious life beyond we shall have the joy and the thrill of
fulfilling deferred ambitions, and to the glory of God, doing the things that we had the urge to do and were never able to accomplish here’.Surviving Members of the William Robert Vick Family
Three generations of the William Robert Vick family are still active in the Seaboard Methodist Church. Ruth Vick O'Brien, second generation, Washington, D. C. still maintains her membership in the Seaboard Methodist Church. Her interest in the Church is shown by her efforts to help the Church History Committee prepare this book.
Bernice Kelly Harris has this comment to make on Mrs. O'Brien's connections with our community:
“Mrs. O'Brien has had a rare place in community life. Her loyalty and understanding have been noteworthy. Her keen mind, her forceful and charming personality, her wonderful service in all phases of local life have impressed themselves profoundly upon this community. She made an outstanding contribution in education and dramatics in Northampton. Her impact upon the religious, as well as civic life has been important. She has served the causes of her church with sincere conviction and effectiveness.
“As teacher extraordinary, as civic leader and as a devoted member of Seaboard Methodist Church, Mrs. Ruth Vick O'Brien will continue to be loved and honored in her old home community.
“Ruth O'Brien is also active in the civic life of Washington as well as in national and international affairs. She is a member of the Executive Committee of Washington's beautiful Christmas Pageant of Peace, on the Board of Directors of the famed Watergate Pops Concerts, a Panel Chairman of the National Conference on Citizenship, and a member of the Executive Committee of the National Citizens Committee for Columbus Day, an inter-American friendship program.
“She and her husband, John T. O'Brien, share in their own public relations firm—John T. O'Brien Associates.”
Reid Vick Harris, third generation, has been a Church leader since his return from World War II, holding the position of Trustee and Sunday School Superintendent. His wife, Louise Warmack Harris, is active in the Sunday School and in the Woman's Society of Christian Service. Their two sons, fourth generation, are loyal and active Church members. Reid Vick Harris, II, born March 15, 1940, is now a freshman at Campbell College. Carl Warmack Harris, born June 4, 1945, is in the Seaboard Junior High School.
Older Church members say: Reid Harris inherited the determination of his grandfather Vick and the kindness of his own father, J. L. Harris.Mrs. Claudia B. White
Mrs. Claudia White is the former Claudia Barrett of the Rehoboth Community. Many years ago, as a teacher, she came to Pruden's Spring School where she met and married Russell White. They have three sons and a daughter. Some have joined the Seaboard Methodist Church with their mother.
After her marriage Mrs. White transferred her membership to this Church. Since her husband is a member of Mt. Carmel Baptist Church, they alternate in attending both churches. Mrs. White has a great interest in her church. She is also a member of the Lillian Ramsay Circle of the Woman's Society of Christian Service.The Ivan B. White Family
Ivan B. White was born near Seaboard, son of G. C. and Renia White. He joined the Pleasant Grove Methodist Church on July 8, 1927. He married Cleo Martin from Milwaukee, North Carolina. They came to Seaboard to live and moved their church membership. Their two daughters, Linda and Ann, joined our Church.
Mr. White is engaged in the electrical and plumbing business in Seaboard. He is a member of the Official Board of the Church and he and his family are most willing and helpful in all activities. Cleo has taught in the Kindergarten Department for five years and is now Superintendent of the Children's Department. She and her oldest daughter, Linda, sing in the choir and are most faithful in their attendance.Mrs. R. C. Worrell
Bessie Parker Worrell was born in 1894, the daughter of the late James Robert and Mary Roundtree Parker of Gates County, North Carolina. In 1928 she was married to Roy C. Worrell of Seaboard. Soon after she married, she moved her membership here. Her husband's father was the late George Thomas Worrell, a farmer of the Seaboard community, who moved here in 1902. That same year he moved his membership to this church and remained a member until his death in 1929.
Mrs. Worrell was a sincere, quiet person who was always to be depended upon to be at all services of the church and meetings of the Woman's Society of Christian Service. J. R. Sewell, a nephew, made his home with his aunt and uncle and they provided for him as a son for the length of time he stayed with them. During his stay, he joined the Seaboard Methodist Church where his membership still remains. He joined the United States Navy and has served in this capacity for sixteen years. Mrs. Worrell died in October 1958, having been an untiring Christian, wife and foster mother.Shirley Warrick Taylor
Shirley Warrick Taylor, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. L. Warrick, joined the Seaboard Methodist Church in 1938. She is married to Andrew Taylor, son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Ellis
Taylor of Gumberry. He remains a member of Pleasant Grove Church, where he joined in early manhood. He attends the Seaboard Sunday School with his wife and two sons, Gene and Steve.
Shirley is a most capable and outstanding teacher in the Primary Department of the Sunday-School. She has served as president of the Bertha Parker circle of the Woman's Society of Christian Service and is most conscientous in giving her time and talent to her church.
Edith Warrick, now Mrs. T. B. Edwards, of Portsmouth, Virginia, was also a former member of our church. Edith's first marriage was to Council Bunn and they and their two children lived in Seaboard and as Shirley, were active and loyal in the church activities.Our Sunday School Families
Some of our most loyal families are known as “Our Sunday School Families” because they hold membership in other Churches due to strong family ties.
Among these are Mrs. Ed Lewis Edwards, Mrs. Sydney S. Harris and Lawrence Moody of Concord Church.
Another is Cecil Whitehead who has the distinguished honor of having a record of seven years perfect attendance at our Sunday School.
Andrew Taylor, husband of our Shirley Warrick Taylor, maintains his Pleasant Grove membership. M. P. Taylor, a member of our High School faculty, is another loyal Sunday School member.
The W. E. Mumford family, members of Pleasant Grove Church, are among our finest Church leaders. They have two children, Tony Wilson and Mary Ann.
In October 1958, Mr. and Mrs. Mumford and their children received their third year bar for perfect attendance at Sunday
School as a family. They recently received the following letter of which they are proud:
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Mumford:
It is with real pleasure that I write to commend you, Tony and Mary Ann for having recently received your third year bar for perfect attendance at Seaboard Methodist Church.
L. H. Fountain, Congress of the U. S.
Second District, North Carolina
In addition, Mary has been Circle leader of the Bertha Parker Circle for two years and has given splendid leadership in her work. A daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Dempsey T. Taylor, a Methodist family, she married into another Methodist family, her husband being the oldest son of Mr. and Mrs. C. B. Mumford, Sr.
NOTE: Mr. and Mrs. Mumford and children, Tony and Mary Anne, transferred their membership to Seaboard Methodist Church on Sunday, November 9, 1958.
Pastors, District Superintendents (Presiding Elders Prior 1939) and Bishops Serving Seaboard Methodist Church from 1880 to 1958 Copied from Virginia Conference Journals 1880-1889 in Duke Divinity School Library.
|Bishop||Dist. Supt.||Pastor||Date of Appt.|
|Murfreesboro District||Northampton Circuit|
|Wm. M. Wightman||W. H. Christian||C. E. Hobday||1880|
|H. N. McTyeire||W. H. Christian||C. E. Hobday||1881|
|George F. Pierce||W. H. Christian||C. E. Hobday||1882|
|H. H. Kavanaugh||J. A. Proctor||T. J. Bayton||1883|
|Warrenton District||Garysburg Circuit|
|John C. Keener||J. A. Proctor||T. J. Bayton||1884|
|John C. Keener||J. A. Proctor||T. J. Bayton||1885|
|John C. Granbery||J. A. Proctor||T. O. Edwards||1886|
|Joseph S. Key||Thomas H. Campbell||T. O. Edwards||1887|
|John C. Granbery||Thomas H. Campbell||T. O. Edwards||1888|
|A. W. Wilson||Thomas H. Campbell||C. W. Cain||1889|
North Carolina Conference Journals 1890-1899 copied at Duke Divinity School Library
|Warrenton District||Garysburg Circuit|
|John C. Keener||S. D. Adams||C. W. Cain||1890|
|Charles B. Galloway||S. D. Adams||T. J. Dailey||1891|
|Wm. W. Duncan||S. D. Adams||T. J. Dailey||1892|
|Wm. W. Duncan||S. D. Adams||Z. T. Harrison||1893|
|Alpheus W. Wilson||W. S. Black||J. R. Tillery||1894|
|Alpheus W. Wilson||W. S. Black||J. R. Tillery||1895|
|Alpheus W. Wilson||W. S. Black||J. D. Pegram||1896|
|Robert K. Hargrove||J. T. Gibbs||J. D. Pegram||1897|
|Oscar Fitzgerald||J. E. Underwood||J. D. Pegram||1898|
|Eugene R. Hendrix||J. E. Underwood||G. W. Fisher||1899|
|Henry C. Morrison||J. E. Underwood||G. W. Fisher||1900|
|Robert T. Hargrove||R. A. Willis||E. W. Fox||1901|
|A. Coke Smith||R. A. Willis||E. W. Fox||1902|
|Warren A. Candler||G. F. Smith||J. G. Johnson||1903|
|Warren A. Candler||G. F. Smith||J. G. Johnson||1904|
|Alpheus W. Wilson||G. F. Smith||J. G. Johnson||1905|
|Alpheus W. Wilson||W. S. Rone||J. G. Johnson||1906|
|Charles B. Galloway||W. S. Rone||D. L. Earnhardt||1907|
|A. W. Wilson||W. S. Rone||D. L. Earnhardt||1908|
|A. W. Wilson||J. E. Underwood||E. N. Harrison||1909|
|Eugene B. Hendrix||J. E. Underwood||E. N. Harrison||1910|
|Bishop||Dist. Supt.||Pastor||Date of Appt.|
|Warrenton District||Garysburg Circuit|
|E. E. Hoss||R. F. Bumpass||E. N. Harrison||1911|
|Collins Denny||R. F. Bumpass||M. Y. Self||1912|
|J. H. McCoy||R. H. Willis||M. Y. Self||1913|
|R. S. Waterhouse||R. H. Willis||M. Y. Self||1914|
|Jno. C. Kilgo||J. D. Bundy||M. Y. Self||1915|
|Jno. C. Kilgo||J. D. Bundy||R. W. Bailey||1916|
|W. A. Candler||E. M. Snipes||R. W. Bailey||1917|
|E. V. W. Darlington||E. M. Snipes||R. W. Bailey||1918|
|E. V. W. Darlington||E. M. Snipes||William Towe||1919|
|U. B. W. Darlington||E. M. Snipes||William Towe||1920|
|Weldon District||Seaboard Circuit|
|U. B. W. Darlington||S. E. Mercer||William Towe||1921|
|Collins Denny||S. E. Mercer||William Towe||1922|
|Collins Denny||S. E. Mercer||C. M. Lance||1923|
|Collins Denny||S. E. Mercer||Frank Culbreth||1924|
|Collins Denny||S. A. Cotton||Frank Culbreth||1925|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||S. A. Cotton||Frank Culbreth||1926|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||S. A. Cotton||Frank Culbreth||1927|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||S. A. Cotton||R. R. Grant||1928|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||L. B. Jones||R. R. Grant||1929|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||L. B. Jones||R. R. Grant||1930|
|Rocky Mount District||Seaboard Circuit|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||L. B. Jones||R. R. Grant||1931|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||L. B. Jones||L. A. Watts||1932|
|Edwin D. Mouzon||W. C. Martin||L. A. Watts||1933|
|Paul B. Kern||W. C. Martin||L. A. Watts||1934|
|Paul B. Kern||J. M. Culbreth||L. A. Watts||1935|
|Paul B. Kern||J. M. Culbreth||L. A. Watts||1936|
|Paul B. Kern||J. M. Culbreth||W. S. Farrar||1937|
|Clare Purcell||L. C. Larkin||W. S. Farrar||1938|
|W. W. Peele||L. C. Larkin||J. Bascom Hurley||1939|
|Clare Purcell||L. C. Larkin||J. Bascom Hurley||1940|
|Clare Purcell||L. C. Larkin||J. Bascom Hurley||1941|
|Clare Purcell||T. McM. Grant||J. Bascom Hurley||1942|
|Clare Purcell||T. McM. Grant||J. D. Robinson||1943|
|W. W. Peele||T. McM. Grant||J. D. Robinson||1944|
|W. W. Peele||T. McM. Grant||J. D. Robinson||1945|
|W. W. Peele||T. McM. Grant||J. D. Robinson||1946|
|W. W. Peele||A. J. Hobbs||J. P. Pegg||1947|
|W. W. Peele||A. J. Hobbs||J. P. Pegg||1948|
|W. W. Peele||A. J. Hobbs||J. P. Pegg||1949|
|W. W. Peele||A. J. Hobbs||J. P. Pegg||1950|
|Paul Neff Garber||A. J. Hobbs||J. K. Bostick||1951|
|Paul Neff Garber||J. F. Herbert||B. F. Musser||1952|
|Paul Neff Garber||J. F. Herbert||B. F. Musser||1953|
|Paul Neff Garber||J. F. Herbert||B. F. Musser||1954|
|Bishop||Dist. Supt.||Pastor||Date of Appt.|
|Paul Neff Garber||J. F. Herbert||B. F. Musser||1955|
|Paul Neff Garber||W. C. Ball||R. S. Gibson||1956|
|Paul Neff Garber||W. C. Ball||R. S. Gibson||1957|
|Paul Neff Garber||W. C. Ball||C. Maness Mitchell||1958|
Joseph M. Phillips, Arnetta E. Ramsay et als
To F. E. Foster, et als Deed, State of
North Carolina, Northampton County
This Deed made this fifth day of August 1881 by Joseph M. Phillips, Arnetta E. Ramsay and John Ramsay of Northampton County and State of North Carolina of the first part to F. E. Foster, W. H. Bridgers, T. S. Taylor, W. H. Ivey and W. H. Lynn Trustees of Northampton County and State of North Carolina of the second part—Witnesseth:
That said Joseph M. Phillips, Arnetta Ramsay and John Ramsay in consideration of ten dollars to them paid by the said Trustees above mentioned the receipt of which is hereby acknowledged, have bargained and sold and by these presents do bargain, sell and convey to said trustees and their successors in office all the right, title, interest and estate of the party of the first part in and to a tract or parcel of land in Northampton County—State of North Carolina.
Adjoining the lands of the said Joseph M. Phillips, Arnetta Ramsay and John Ramsay and on the West by the county road leading from Seaboard to Jackson and others bound as follows: Viz: Commencing at a twin post oak and thence East seventy yards to a corner post; thence South 50 yards to a corner post; thence West 70 yards (which line is designated by chopped trees) to a corner post, thence North 50 yards bounded by said county road to the first station.
In trust that said premises shall be used, kept, maintained and disposed of as a place of Divine Worship for the use of the Ministry and membership of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, subject to the disciplined usage and ministerial appurtenances of said church as from time to time authorized and declared by the General Conference of said Church and the Annual Conference within whose bounds the said premises are situated, provided however that in the event that the above
named premises fail to become occupied for above purposes or should cease to be occupied for the purposes above mentioned, then the said premises shall revert back to the said Joseph M. Phillips, Arnetta Ramsay and John Ramsay or their heirs.
To have and to hold the aforesaid tract or parcel of land and all privileges and appurtenances thereunto belonging to the said trustees or their heirs, or their successors in office to the above specified use and behoof forever. And the said J. M. Phillips, Arnetta Ramsay and John Ramsay covenant that they are seized of said premises in fee and have right to convey the same in fee simple—that the same are free and clear from all encumbencies and that they will warrant and defend the said title to the same against the claims of all persons whatsoever.
In testimony whereof the said J. M. Phillips, Arnetta Ramsay and John Ramsay have herewith set their hands and seals the day and year above mentioned.
Signed: J. M. Phillips
June 14, 1883
H. R. DeLoatche,
Register of Deeds
S. J. Calvert
Clerk of Superior CourtSECOND SEABOARD METHODIST CHURCH DEED—1922
John T. Ramsay—et ux et als
R. W. Edwards et als, Trustees Seaboard M.E. Church
State of North Carolina, Northampton County
North Carolina, Northampton County: This Deed, made this 2nd day of May 1922, by John T. Ramsay and Annie Ramsay, his wife, of the city of Richmond, Virginia; Jos. H. Ramsay and Lillian Ramsay, his wife; W. L. Harris and Betty Harris, his wife, of Northampton County, N. C., parties of the first part, to R. W. Edwards, M. R. Stephenson, G. F. Crocker and W. R. Vick, Trustees of and for Seaboard Methodist
Episcopal Church, South, being residents of Northampton County, N. C. Witnesseth: That the said parties of the first part, in consideration of the sum of one dollar ($1.00) and sundry other valuable considerations unto them moving, the receipt of which is hereby expressly admitted, and all claims thereto fully released, the said John T. Ramsay and Annie Ramsay, his wife; Jos. H. Ramsay and Lillian Ramsay, his wife; W. L. Harris and Betty Harris, his wife, have granted, released, confirmed, conveyed and quit claimed by these presents do give, grant, release, confirm, convey and quit claim unto the said R. W. Edwards, M. R. Stephenson, G. F. Crocker, and W. R. Vick, Trustees as aforesaid, and their successors in office, all of their right, title, interest and estate, legal or equitable, in and to the following real estate, to wit: That certain lot of parcel of land with all improvements, thereon, situate lying and being in the town of Seaboard, Northampton County, North Carolina, beginning at a forked white oak tree, main street in the said town and running thence in an easterly direction 210 feet; thence in a southerly direction 150 feet; thence in westerly direction 210 feet; thence in a northerly direction 150 feet to the beginning, the said lot of land fronting 150 feet on main street, running back easterly direction 210 feet; and adjoining the lands of Dr. M. R. Stephenson, George Cloyd, B. G. Stancell and others and being the identical lot of land upon which the Seaboard M. E. Church, South is now located.
To have and to hold all the right, title, interest and estate of the said parties of the first part in and to the above described real estate, as aforesaid, unto them, the said R. W. Edwards, M. R. Stephenson, G. F. Crocker, and W. R. Vick, Trustees of Seaboard M.E. Church South, and their successors in office, to their use and behoof forever, and free and discharged from all charges, claims, equities or other rights of the said parties of the first part thereto.
In testimony whereof, the said John T. Ramsay and Annie Ramsay, his wife; Jos. H. Ramsay and Lillian Ramsay, his wife; W. L. Harris and Betty Harris, his wife, do hereunder subscribe their respective names and affix their several seals, this the day and year first above written.
|Jno. T. Ramsay||(Seal)||Lillian Ramsay||(Seal)|
|Annie Ramsay||(Seal)||W. L. Harris||(Seal)|
|Jos. H. Ramsay||(Seal)||Bettie P. Harris||(Seal)|