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1916: Rev. Grimsley writes of singings, Sunday schools, and buggy-sitters

By Jim

Toward the end of April 1916, the Adair County News published a letter from I.M. Grimsley, a minister and well-known singing instructor of the McGaha/Sano section, penned while he was a-journey to the hamlet of Russell Springs (and thus the heading of his missive).

For those who haven't studied their recitations, Mt. Vernon Church isn't far removed from Esto (named after William Louis Esto Bazeldo Frank McAwain Barger, a young citizen of the communithy when the post office there was established, for those who keep track of such things), the southern-most point of the Sacred Triangle.

A few weeks earlier, the McGaha newsletter of February 9 had reported, "Rev. I.M. Grimsley, of this place, who has been attending the Normal School Singing at Lawrenceburg, Tenn., for several terms, has decided to spend the summer in this country, having accepted the care of Russell Springs, Liberty, and Mt. Vernon churches as pastor."

"Liberty" apparently referred to Liberty Church in Russell County, near Montpelier, rather than Liberty, Casey County. The Owensby, Russell County, newsletter in the same edition also mentioned him accepting those three pastorates and added, "He is reported to be an able minister and one of the greatest musicians in southern Kentucky."

Wrote Rev. Grimsley:
Russell Springs

I have a nice singing school at Russell Springs. Will close next Friday night.

One case of pellegra here and some other sicknesses.

Rev. [W.L.] Brock, the S.S. Sec'y., of the State for Baptist[s], gave a fine lecture at this place April 6. The Baptist were well pleased with it.

The Baptist have a fine Sunday school here.

I had a fine service at Mt Vernon [Church, in southern Russell County] the 15 and 16. On Sunday they spread a nice dinner after the sermon. Then we joined in song service, which was a success. On the third Sunday in May we have all day services again, singing and preaching in the morning and singing in the afternoon We invite all lovers of music to meet with us. We don't care about those that sit in buggies while we sing. Being there as they are, is a disadvantage to the singing.

I am expecting to teach at Liberty soon.

On the first Saturday night and Sunday in May I will preach Pleasant View church, near McGaha. Sunday I will talk about, what Baptist have done for the world. In the afternoon we will engage in singing. Hope to meet my many friends and join us in worship.

Professor Loren Kell is teaching a successful singing at Pleasant View.

The worthy Superintendent of the Pleasant View S.S. awarded presents to Miss Jennie B. (sic; likely, Jessie V.) Grimsley and Master Ben Powell for having perfect lessons during the first quarter. Also to Miss Gertie Bailey for regular attendance. Mr. Willie St. Clair, at the same time, awarded to Miss Josie Floyd for perfect lessons, Ray Powell and Odus Burton for regular attendance.

--I.M. Grimsley
More about Rev. Grimsley:
Brief vignettes of Rev. I.M. (Pilgrim) Grimsley
History: Don't judge a book by its cover

This story was posted on 2016-04-05 06:30:05
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