Sketches of holston preachers

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Jackson, Jonathan: In Holston one year as presiding elder, 1804-5. Located in 1814.


Jackson, Rush F.: Born Sept. 22, 1849. Converted in his twentieth year under the preaching of Rev. E. W. Moore. Admitted in 1884. A man without guile and a man of one work, for twenty-one years. Married Nov. 4, 1874, Miss Margaret Early. Died Feb. 5, 1905. Buried at Emory, Va.


James, Charles M.: Born Aug. 8, 1845, in Athens, Tenn. Admitted 1875. "He was well-informed in the doctrines of Methodism. He was unassuming and inclined to be eccentric in his nature, which rendered him somewhat unpopular as a pastor." For many years he was a superannuate and spent his time visiting and preaching in destitute places. He was twice married: (1) Miss Hattie Marsburn in 1871; they had two children. (2) Miss Belle Spillman, Mt. Vernon, Tenn., Nov. 16, 1885; they had two children. Died Aug. 17, 1925. Buried at Eleazer Camp Ground.


Jameson, Deloy H.: Born May 26, 1869, in Hancock County, Ohio. He attended school at Ada and Fostoria, attending school in winter and working on the farm in summer. He was elected superintendent of schools at Gibsonburg at twenty; was licensed to preach in 1891; appointed as a supply in 1892; attended college at Delaware, Ohio, in 1893. He came South on account of health that fall, attended school at Athens; took supply work. Admitted 1894 and served two years. He married Oct. 31, 1894, Miss Katie Wetzel. They had one child. His health failed and he was forced to leave his work in March, 1896. He died Jan. 29, 1897, at his boyhood home. He was buried at Bowling Green, Ohio.


Jennings, John Henry: Born Aug. 22, 1837, near Lynchburg, Va. Admitted 1869. He had been ordained as a local deacon by Bishop Early in 1862; and as a local elder by Bishop Clark in 1868. He was active for thirty-two years, supernumerary three years, he served sixteen charges. He was thrice married: (1) Sarah A. Henderson, Aug. 17, 1860. They had two children. (2) Lizzie A. Reeves, May 12, 1881. They had nine children. (3) Sarah Agnes Roberts, Feb. 16, 1897. He superannuated in 1900. He died Jan. 14, 1914. He was buried in Washington County, Tenn.


Jimison, James Manley: Born April 10, 1877, near Asheville, N. C. Entered Emory and Henry College, working his way through, he was well on in his junior year, but failing health compelled him to leave college. He profited by the counsel of his teachers as well as by his studies; and his gratitude to the President, Dr. R. G. Waterhouse, and to the College, knew no bounds. Admitted 1903. He served four charges: 1. Lenoir City. 2. Petros, two years, built a church and parsonage and was appointed by Governor Frazier as chaplain to the 800 prisoners at Brushy Mountain prison. 3. Rockwood. 4. South Pittsburg. His energy was matched by the fervor of his spirit and the conviction of his faith. He maintained a tender interest for his parents and others of his boyhood home, especially for a little blind sister whom he was sending to school. The end came while he was in the midst of a revival at Ridgedale, Chattanooga. As he was announcing his text, his right arm fell helpless at his side. He preached; again in the afternoon; and yet again at night; at all of these services there were conversions. After the services he retired to his room, never to enter the pulpit again. Died at Erlanger Hospital, Chattanooga, Feb. 16, 1909.


Johnson, John: In Holston one year, 1803.


Johnson, William: Admitted 1822. In Holston 1822.


Johnston, Hugh Strother: Born April 29, 1867, at Staffordsville, Va. He was converted at Wabash Camp Ground where his parents tented. Admitted 1897, and served numerous circuits until 1929. He was a faithful and diligent man. Married Miss Fannie S. Guthrie, Dec. 28, 1898. They had seven children. In 1929, on account of failing health, he superannuated. He died in his home at Bluff City, April 20, 1936, and was buried in Bluff City.


Jones, Aquila: Admitted 1792. In Holston one year, 1796-97.


Jones, John Franklin: Born Aug., 1863, at Mt. Airy, N. C. Admitted 1895. He served seventeen charges in thirty-seven years. A man of singular appearance, angular and gaunt, but endowed with a strong mind, he spoke clearly and forcefully. He knew no fear, but sometimes allowed his temper to get out of control. He was successful in revival work, in church building and all details of pastoral administration. He married, Feb. 28, 1888, Miss Mary Lula Williams. They had four children. He superannuated in 1932 and lived with his daughter, Mrs. Virgie Lee, Persia, Tenn. In 1934 his health broke down completely and he was taken to the hospital at Marion, Va., where he died June 23, 1934. He was buried at Steven's Creek, N. C.


Jones, John Nelson: Born Nov. 29, 1858, at Georgetown, S. C. Son of Dr. J. Nelson and Mrs. Lenora Jones. Educated public schools and University of South Carolina. Admitted in 1888, he preached in Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, South Georgia and Holston. Transferred from South Georgia to Holston in 1916, after which he served six charges in ten years. Married in 1893, Miss Emma Weaver, Ocala, Fla. They had one child. Superannuated in 1926. Died suddenly, Dec. 17, 1932, in Knoxville, Tenn. Buried in Knoxville.


Jones, William Lee: Born Jan. 10, 1853. Educated at Carson and Newman College. In early life was Superintendent of Public Instruction in Jefferson County, Tenn. Married Miss Julia Tate Oct. 25, 1881. They had five children. Admitted 1882. Was in active service for nearly twenty years and served eight charges. He was a successful revival pastor. Died Jan. 16, 1902, at his home in Rogersville, Tenn. Buried at Morristown.


Jones, W. T.: (No memoir.) Born 1861. Admitted 1883 and served Rockwood 1883, Hamilton 1884, Red Bank 1885 and Rockwood 1886 and 1887. He died in 1888 and was buried at Rockwood.


Julian, George: Born July 10, 1812, in Bedford County, N. C. When he was a child his parents moved to Blount County, Tenn. Deprived of early educational opportunities, he applied his mind to the search for knowledge and became a man of more than ordinary culture and influence. He was above six feet, strong and powerful. Admitted 1868. He was an ardent and successful revivalist. He married Sept. 4, 1835, Miss Mourning Smith in McMinn County, Tenn. They had thirteen children. "At a family reunion, a short time before his death, one hundred and seventy-six (176) descendants were counted. He lived to see the fifth generation of his offspring." He superannuated in 1885. In his last years he grew feeble of body and mind "until only a barely perceptible breathing and a faint pulsation of a feeble heart remained" and death came March 5, 1906. He was buried at Tyner's Station, Tenn.


Kahle, Elijah Fletcher: Born July 24, 1853, in Amherst County, Va. Son of Samuel and Katherine McClain Kahle. In his early boyhood the family moved to Mercer County, W. Va. Educated in public schools. Admitted in 1875. During his first year he transferred to Texas, where he remained two or three years. Upon his return from Texas he engaged in mercantile business and did well. The same genial friendliness which was to make him a good pastor made him a good salesman. He was again admitted into Holston Conference in 1885. He was a popular pastor on circuits and at Radford, Va., and was presiding elder for ten years. The last seventeen years of his life he was Secretary of the Virginia Children's Home Society, for which he was peculiarly fitted. Married twice: (1) Miss Eva Gillette, Austin, Texas, Feb. 15, 1880. They had eight children. She died Feb. 27, 1900. (2) Mrs. Martha Sadler Vaughan, Richmond, Va., June 18, 1908. They had one child. He died in George Ben Johnson Memorial Hospital, Abingdon, Va., Oct. 3, 1926. He was buried at Emory, Va.


Kavanaugh, Williams: Admitted 1794. In Holston one year, 1794-95. Married Miss Hannah Hubbard Hinde, March 29, 1798. Located 1798. He was the father of Bishop Hubbard Hinde Kavanaugh. Died Oct. 6, 1806.


Keener, Ulrich: Admitted 1823. Located 1830; readmitted 1845. Had charge of Echota Mission, which was mostly among the Cherokee Indians, from 1850 to 1856. Tradition that he was the first Methodist itinerant in Tuckaseegee Valley. Married Miss Sarah Ducket in 1829, who survived him forty-nine years, dying in 1905, at the age of 93. They had five sons and six daughters, all but one of whom reared families. He died Aug. 13, 1856.


Keister, James Ballard: Born April 19, 1844, near Auburn, Montgomery County, Va. He served in Company E, 25th Virginia Cavalry of the Confederate Army. Was wounded and had a horse shot from under him at Winchester, Va. He was licensed to preach in 1881. Admitted to the Virginia Conference in 1892. He transferred to Holston Conference in 1908. He had been supernumerary 1906-1908. Of twenty years as pastor ten years were spent on his home circuit of Auburn. He married Aug. 29, 1866, Miss Nancy J. Hawley. They had seven children. He superannuated in 1912. He died in Roanoke, Va., Dec. 17, 1916, and was buried there.


Keith, John Henninger: Born April 27, 1839, in Rhea County, Tenn. Converted at fifteen, licensed to preach at eighteen. Studied medicine and practiced medicine during the war between the states. Admitted 1858. Discontinued 1859. Again admitted 1870. At once took high rank. Transferred to North Texas 1891, on account of health. Transferred to Western Carolina Conference and, in 1894, back to Holston. Served several of best circuits and stations and was twice presiding elder. Married Miss Anne Myers, Rhea County, Tenn. - eight children. A popular preacher, modest, quiet, unassuming, a friend of every man. Died Sept. 20, 1902, at Rogersville, Tenn. Buried at Asheville, N. C.


Kelley, John: Born Jan. 26, 1802. Son of Dennis Kelley a Revolutionary soldier, who was present at the death of Major Andre. Admitted in 1821. He was a charter member of Holston Conference. In Holston territory 1821 to 1827. On Carter's Valley circuit, with Creed Fulton as helper, 450 were added to the church. Transferred to Missouri Conference in 1827. In 1831 he transferred to Tennessee Conference. Married Miss Margaret Lavinia Campbell, who became a pioneer in Woman's Missionary work in M. E. Church, South. Their son, Rev. David C. Kelley, was a missionary to China and afterwards one of the leaders of Tennessee Conference. Rev. Jon Kelley was Bishop McKendree's pastor; and attended his bedside during his last illness; and, as the Bishop had requested, attended his funeral. Mr. Kelley died, attended by thronging friends, at his home in Wilson County, Tenn., May 16, 1864. Mrs. Kelley died Oct. 29, 1897. Her daughter, Miss Daisey Lavinia Kelley, married Walter R. Lambuth, missionary to China, Japan and Africa; and Bishop of M. E. Church, South.


Kelly, Charles W.: Born in Giles County, Va., Jan. 4, 1864. He was educated in public school and at Emory and Henry College. Admitted in 1886. He served fourteen charges, four circuits and ten stations and two districts. He was loved and honored by all who knew him and was successful in every place to which he was assigned. "His entire life was given to his work, his family and his home." He served as a Y.M.C.A. director with the A.E.F. in France, returning to America with the last contingent. Upon his return he was elected General Secretary of the local Y.M.C.A. in Chattanooga, but took appointment to pastoral work at the end of one year. He married, Oct. 1, 1889, Miss Ella Proffitt, Floyd, Va. They had two sons. He died Nov. 1, 1839, less than thirty days after he received his fifty-fourth appointment as a preacher. He was buried at Knoxville.


Kelly, Richard Alexander: Born May 12, 1860, at Fredericksburg, Va. Son of John T. and Elizabeth Cole Kelly. He was converted at Summerfield Methodist Church in Grayson County, Va. His parents had probably moved to Grayson County. It was from Elk Creek circuit that he was recommended for admission on trial. He had the marks of having enjoyed favorable educational opportunities. He was a reader of good books. He was licensed to exhort at 16 and at 17 was licensed to preach. Admitted in 1878. He served 16 charges and two districts. He was given supernumerary relation in 1891, but held that relation only one year. This was the only gap in his service. He was a revivalist and many professions of conversion occurred under his preaching. He made friends easily, and was loved by those who knew him. He married July 13, 1881, Miss Frances Cecil. They had five children. He asked for the superannuate relation in 1926 and so continued to the end. He had lingering illness and died Oct. 27, 1933, in Newell's Sanatorium, Chattanooga, and was buried in Chattanooga.


Kelly, William H.: Born Sept. 3, 1824, in Carter County, Tenn. Son of Vincent and Ann S. Kelly. Educated at Emory and Henry. Admitted 1848. Was in pastorate most of the time until 1883; was Agent for Martha Washington College; and served a period on Athens District. Served sixteen circuits and stations. Supernumerary from 1883 until 1894, when he took superannuate and so continued to the end of his days. Married March 25, 1843, Miss Elizabeth Carpenter, Washington County, Va. She died in 1863. A few years later, married Miss Rachel Graham. They had several children. He was always acceptable as a preacher. Active thirty-five years, retired twenty-eight years. He lived in comfort on a good farm a few miles east of Tazewell, Va. Died 1911 in eighty-sixth year, in home of his son at Bluefield, W. Va. Buried at Tazewell.


Kendrick, William P.: Admitted 1820. His appointments were: Holston circuit, Abingdon, Carter's Valley, Greene, Knox, Florence and Huntsville. An extraordinary preacher, excelled by few in his day. Very successful in evangelism. Located in 1831. Engaged in politics. Became a chaplain in Confederate Army and died in that work.


Kennedy, James L.: Born Dec. 31, 1857, at Strawberry Plains, Tenn. He was the son of Rev. James S. Kennedy and Melinda Stringfield Kennedy. His mother was a daughter of Rev. Thomas Stringfield who was a member of Holston Conference from 1816 to 1853. These three generations of Methodist preachers have spanned the years from 1816 to 1942, a period of one hundred and twenty-six years. The three combined have given one hundred and fifty-seven years to the itinerant ministry. The boyhood of James L. Kennedy was blessed by the exceptional culture and devotion of his scholarly father and cultured mother. He was educated at Weaverville College (N. C.) and Wofford College (S. C.). He was admitted to Holston Conference in 1878. He went as a missionary to Brazil in 1881 and continued in active work, as a missionary, for fifty-four years, retiring in 1935. He was twice married: (1) Miss Jennie Wallace, Knoxville, Tenn. They had three children. She died in 1913. (2) Miss Daisy Pyles of Brazil, in 1918. They had one child. After retirement he lived in Knoxville where their son was in college; but as the twilight began to fall they returned to the land to which he had gone as a youth of twenty-four. His last days were full of peace. He died in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Dec. 7, 1942, and was buried there.


Kennedy, James Skidmore: Born Dec. 31, 1826, in Madison County, Va. Traveled three hundred miles by stage to enter Emory and Henry College in 1846. Graduated there in 1849. Taught at Cleveland, Tenn., in 1849; and at Strawberry Plains (Tenn.) High School, in 1850; Principal Preparatory Department Randolph-Macon College in 1851. Licensed to preach at Emory and Henry in 1848. Admitted to Virginia Conference in 1852. Transferred to Holston Conference 1857, having been elected President of Strawberry Plains College, where he remained two years. Later President of Holston Female College for ten years and of Weaverville College for two years. Served stations and districts twenty-seven years. Superannuated in 1898. Married Aug. 26, 1851, Miss Melinda Williams Stringfield, daughter of Rev. Thomas Stringfield. Ten children. One son (James L.) was a Methodist preacher and for fifty-four years a missionary in Brazil; two daughters, Fannie and Mollie, were also missionaries to Brazil. All others were active church members. Dr. Kennedy was recognized as one of the most scholarly men of Holston Conference. He received the degrees of A.B. and A.M., from Emory and Henry, and, in 1874, the degree of D.D., from Wofford College. He died Nov. 19, 1905, in the home of his son, Mr. E. M. Kennedy, Knoxville, Tenn. Mrs. Kennedy had died April 14, 1905. Both were buried in Old Gray Cemetery at Knoxville. He was a delegate to the General Conferences of 1866, 1874, 1882 and 1894.


Kennedy, John H.: Born Aug. 16, 1848, near Morganton, Tenn. Son of Adams and Elizabeth McTeer Kennedy. His mother was a sister to Rev. John M. McTeer. Admitted 1872. Served on circuits nineteen years, with an average salary of $424.65 per annum; on districts five years, with an average salary of $852.95 per annum. Married Oct. 1, 1874, Miss Frances Elizabeth Bryan, Henry's Cross Roads, Sevier County, Tenn. She died April 3, 1912. A man of candor, courage, decision, alertness, aggressiveness, enthusiasm and punctuality, he was successful in building the church wherever he was sent. He was active and efficient to the very end of his days. Died Dec. 8, 1898, at Philadelphia, Tenn. Buried at Morristown.


Kesterson, John: In Holston one year, 1819.


Ketron, S. G.: Born June 12, 1854, at Bloomingdale, Tenn. He was educated at Kingsley Seminary and at Grant University. He was admitted to Holston Conference in 1881. His long ministry of more than fifty years was within the Johnson City District. He served for twelve years as the District Superintendent, in two terms. He was a powerful figure in the Conference. He was elected a delegate to the General Conference in 1892. It is said that he was a striking figure and was known to the body as "Uncle Sam Ketron." He retired in 1921, after forty years in the Conference, but continued his activities as an evangelist and as a supply pastor. He died April 30, 1936, at the Holston Community Hospital, Kingsport, Tenn., and was buried at Kingsport.


Kincaid, Ayers: Born April 17, 1849, at Island Ford, Anderson County, Tenn. His parents were deeply religious. He followed in their ways from his youth. He often spoke of his mother's prayers. Admitted in 1872. Serving hard charges with meager compensation, he maintained a meek and gentle spirit, which won the affection and esteem of his people. Superannuated 1908. Married Oct. 16, 1878, Miss Sarah Elizabeth Paris. They had three children. His wife died Oct. 8, 1915. He died Aug. 21, 1917, at Chattanooga. Buried at Cleveland, Tenn.


King, James: Admitted 1806. In Holston one year, 1809. Located 1810.


King, Thomas A.: In Holston one year, 1811.


King, William: In Holston one year, 1812.


Kinsland, William: Born Sept. 26, 1836, in Haywood County, N. C. Admitted to Holston Conference (South) in 1857. He transferred to the M. E. Church in 1867. He spent many years of faithful earnest service in the itinerant ministry in Holston Conference. Married Sept. 9, 1862, Miss Penelope West. Surviving him there were a son and three daughters. He was superannuated in 1900. He died Aug. 9, 1907, at his home in Grainger County, Tenn. He was buried at Joppa, Tenn.


Kirby, Charles L.: Born July 7, 1875, at Oak Grove, Sevier County, Tenn. He was active as a song leader and Sunday school superintendent before he entered the ministry. He was admitted in 1907, and served fifteen charges in twenty-three years. He volunteered as a soldier in the war with Spain and served to the close of the war. He married Dec. 24, 1899, Miss Malinda Huffaker. They had nine children. He died Oct. 27, 1930, having just been appointed to Thorn Grove circuit. He was buried at Maryville, Tenn.


Kirkpatrick, R. H.: Admitted 1823. In Holston two years, 1823-24.


Kite, Rufus Walter: Born in Hawkins County, Tenn., July 27, 1858. Son of Hickman A. and Elizabeth Peck White Kite. Admitted 1884. Appointments: Mossy Creek, 2 years; Newport circuit, 4 years; Graham, Va., 1 year; Cleveland, Tenn., 1 year - 8 years. He was married Dec. 20, 1881, to Miss Elizabeth Walker Sturn, daughter of Frederick and Marie Louise Sturn, near Rogersville, Tenn. They had five children, two of whom died in infancy. He was notably devoted and useful. Superannuated 1892. He died March 22, 1894; and was buried at Bristol, Tenn.


Kobler, John: Born Aug. 29, 1768, Culpepper County, Va. Admitted 1789. Presiding elder in Holston four years, 1793-94-95-96. Died July 26, 1843, at Fredericksburg, Va.


Ladd, Milton: In Holston one year, 1808.


Lakin, Benjamin: Born Aug. 23, 1767, Montgomery County, Md. Admitted 1795. In Holston one year, 1795-96. Located in 1798. Was active as local preacher in Great Revival. Died Feb. 5, 1849, Brown County, Ohio.


Lambert, George L.: Born Nov. 28, 1877, at Rocky Gap, Bland County, Va. Son of William H. and Mary Linkous Lambert. Educated at Emory and Henry College, graduating in 1906. Licensed to preach July 26, 1902. Admitted 1905. Served ten charges in eighteen years. Modest and unassuming, his true worth was not at once recognized, but he came to be known as a preacher of understanding and power. Married Feb. 19, 1907, Miss Lilly Doss, Abingdon, Va. They had two children, a son and a daughter. Their home life was notably beautiful and harmonious. His death was tragic. He had just returned home after a few days' absence; and took his family out for a drive. In some unaccountable way his car left the road and plunged into a ravine and he was killed instantly, the family escaping with serious injury. Died July 7, 1924, at Welch, W. Va., where he was pastor. He was buried at Emory, Va.


Lambert, Jeremiah: First Methodist preacher sent to Holston. His home was in New Jersey. He was admitted into the traveling connection at Choptank, Del., in 1781. He traveled the circuits of Talbott, Brunswick, Holston (1783), Philadelphia and Antigua (West Indies). He was six years an itinerant preacher. Without classical learning, he was, nevertheless, a most useful man, of sound judgment, clear understanding, good gifts and genuine piety. He died in 1786.


Lambuth, William: Born in Hanover County, Va., 1765. Admitted 1795. In Holston (Greene circuit), 1799-1800. Married Miss Elizabeth Greenhaw. He located and continued as a local preacher until his death in 1837. His eldest son was for many years a useful preacher in the Mississippi Conference; his grandson, John W. Lambuth, was a pioneer missionary in China; his great-grandson, Walter R. Lambuth, born in China, was a useful worker with his father in that field, and with his father, founder of the mission work of his church in Japan, and was for many years Missionary Secretary of the M. E. Church, South, and was elected Bishop in 1910, and, afterwards, founded the mission in Africa.


Lasley, Thomas: Born March 31, 1782, in Virginia. Son of Manoah Lasley. Admitted in 1804. In Holston one year, 1804. Ill health forced location. Married Miss Susan Ambrose in 1810. Died Jan. 27, 1857, at home of son-in-law, Mr. M. McMillan, in McMinnville, Tenn.


Lawson, James D.: Born in Tuchaleechee Cove, Tenn., Jan. 12, 1826. Son of Howell and Polly Byrd Lawson. He professed faith in Christ Oct. 6, 1846, and joined the M. E. Church, South, and was appointed class leader. He was ordained local deacon in Holston Conference in 1858 by Bishop J. O. Andrew, and was ordained local elder in 1869 by Bishop Matthew Simpson. He was admitted to Holston, M. E., in 1868. His first appointment was Sevierville circuit. He was a great revivalist and saw hundreds of conversions year after year. He was very popular. When it was known that he was to preach the house would be full. He rode horseback more than forty thousand miles in his circuit work. He was again on Sevierville circuit in 1872 and in 1876; on Little River in 1869 and in 1873; on Fair Garden in 1880-1-2; on Maryville 1877-78-79; and on New Market in 1874. All of these circuits were either in Sevier County or within easy horseback reach of his home. He was in actual charge in circuits for twelve years. He was supernumerary in 1871 and in 1875; and he was supernumerary from 1882 to 1896; this was a total of sixteen years, but those sixteen years were not years of idleness. From his home in Wier's Valley he ranged constantly over the fields where he had won a place of leadership and usefulness. He married Feb. 23, 1860, Miss Hettie Evaline Morton, born Feb. 23, 1840, in Blount County, Tenn. They had five daughters and four sons. She outlived her husband twenty-seven years. At the time of her death, Sept. 23, 1933, she was ninety-three years and seven months old. Along with his work as a preacher he was so full of energy, push and frugality, that he accumulated considerable property. He superannuated in 1897. He died Nov. 15, 1906, and was buried in Wier's Valley, Sevier County, Tenn.


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