Pinckney Baptist  Church
The Early Years (1838-1862)

By Harold Graham

Pinckney Baptist Church was organized on September 25, 1838,  with Rev. Goss as pastor, according to records of the Mt. Pisgah Baptist  Association. No church minutes exist for the first nine years of its existence;  therefore little is known about individual membership. According to  associational records, in 1840 the church had 19 members. In 1843 the church had  grown to 50 members with Rev. A. Goss as pastor. S. Wall and J. McCullough were  sent as messengers to the annual meeting of the Mt. Pisgah Baptist Association.  Pinckney sent no messengers for the year 1846 and it appears that the church may  have been discontinued.

Pinckney Baptist Church was reconstituted in 1847 with the Rev. Nathaniel L.  Clarke presiding over the church until a permanent pastor could be found. Other  pastors who served prior to 1862 were Reverends Lee P. Murrell, Morehead, Moses  Thomas, David Killen, and Henry Gill. Bro. Jenkins was appointed as Church  Treasurer in 1847. David Gill and Benjamin B. Martin were selected as Deacons in  1852 and Bro. Patterson in 1855. Serving in the position of Church Clerk were H.  I. Hill (1847-1848), Benjamin B. Martin (1849-1855) O. F. Breland (1856-1857),  John M. Gates (1858-1859), and Benjamin B. Martin (1860-1862).

According to the late Odell Loper, church clerk, the church met initially in the  private home of a member near the present location of Stratton. Church members  made so much noise in their meetings that a private homeowner objected and the  church was moved to a public building in the town of Pinckney and near the  present location of Stamper's Mill Pond. Apparently the following minutes are in  reference to this incident:

December 4, 1847Appointed Brothers Lewis Jenkins, Gill & Odom to ascertain  whether the church could occupy the present house any longer.

January 7, 1848Committee to wait on Mr. Raibon with regard to the future  occupancy of the present place of worship reported it could not be used any  longer by the church. On motion, agreed for the future to meet in one of the  houses of East Pinckney.

The first burying ground was located near their second place of worship.  Apparently no permanent grave markers were ever set and the location has been  long abandoned.

Somewhat later, the original protester again objected to the location of the  church and the church was moved to its present location, approximately one mile  northwest of the early town of Pinckney and adjacent to Highway 489. This town,  which flourished briefly before the Civil War, later came to be known as  Stamper. A post office once existed at Stamper, but today the lone remnant of  the town is the millpond.

The original Pinckney Church Minutes for Book A cover the period from 1847--ca  1871, with approximately 110 pages and with many pages missing or out of order.  From the minutes, we present membership lists for the certain years along with  other notes of interest. Spellings are used as in the original.

It is apparent from these early membership rolls that the church population  included members not only from the immediate vicinity of Pinckney, but from  southern Neshoba County as well.

Membership List for the Year 1847 (Total of 34):

Male

Lewis Jenkins

James Nickols

Jacob Rowel

John Cooksey

John Cooksey

H. I. Hill

Owen Pinson

Francis Austin

H. Lasley

Thomas Sessums

Henry Walton

Amariah Land

Shadrack Odom

Henry H. Johnson

William C. Sessums

Harrison Johnson

Female

Sarah Jenkins

Sidney Nickols

Fany Rowel

Jemima Johnson

Alice Speer

Martha Hill

Elizabeth Johnson

Elizabeth Spear

Margaret Smith

Caroline Smith

Rachel Coran

Martha Ann Smith

Mary Walton

Mary Martin

Lucinda Pinson

Lavina Land

Susan Lashley

Elizabeth Odom

Membership List for the Year 1848 (Total of 44):

Lewis Jenkins

Sarh Jenkins

Jacob Rowell

Martha Miller

John Cooksey

Elizabeth Johnson

Henry Gill

Margaret Smith

H. I. Hill

Caroline Smith

Owen Pinson

Rachel Coran

Thomas Sessums

Martha Ann Smith

Henry Walton

Mary Walton

Harison Johnson

Mary Martin

Amariah Land

Lucinda Pinson

Shadrack Odom

Henry J. Johnson

Lavina Johnson

Zilpha Cooksey

Jesse Miller

Zilpha Sessums

Rheuben Price

Rosannah Hutto

Benjamin Martin

Mary Martin

Isaac Gorhan

Clark

David Gill

Catherine Gill

Lewis M. Patterson

Elisabeth Gorhan*

Elen Price

Delaney Barfoot

Leah Martin

Elizabeth Martin

Sarah Miller

Fanny Gill

Elizabeth Odom

Fanny Rowell

*Eliserbeth Price crossed out and Elisabeth Gorham substituted.

Membership List for the Year 1850(Total of 59):

Lewis Jenkins

Sarah Jenkins

John Cooksey

Mary Martin

Shadrach Odom

Mary Jane Martin

Henry Gill

Mary Walton

Thomas Cessoms

Zilpha Cooksey

Henry Johnson

Elizabeth Odom

William C. Cessoms

Catherin Gill

Jacob Rowell

Zilpha Cessoms

Lettice Rabun

Mary Ann Jackson

Lewis M. Paterson

Eveline Cooksey

Harrison Johnson

Henry Walton

Elizabeth Parks

James B. Bedgood

David Gill

Leah Graham

John Ishee

Lucinda Pinson

James J. Jones

Ann Johnson

William Kenedy

Margaret Davis

Phanuel Gill, dead

Caroline Smith

Owin Pinson

Malinda Ishee

James Miller

Elizabeth smith

Jesse Miller

Nancy Davis

Tamsy Clark

Hannah Price

Isaac Cohran

Lavina Johnson

Delaney Gill

Elin Price

Hugh Smith

Sarah Ann Kenedy

Sarah Miller

Matilda Bedgood

Elizabeth Jackson

Luiza Smith

B.B.Martin

Caroline Miller

Martha Ann Smith

Fanny Rowell

Emaline Germany

S____y Cohran

Elizabeth Cohran

The Civil War brought many difficult times to the church. Most of the young men  were sent to the war, leaving the church stripped of much of its leadership and  vitality. Many of these young men did not survive the war. Church clerk B. B.  Martin addressed some of these issues in the minutes, as follows:

"Remarks of the Clerk on the Annual Meeting

"1862--This year the brethren and sisters met, and with the Apostle each one  might have said, 'I have great heaviness, and emotional sickness in my heart'.  Many had either lost near relatives upon the field of battle or by disease in  the camps, and moreover nearly all the brethren was absent in the Confederate  Army. On Sunday, Lord's Day, Bro. William Butler preached the funeral sermon of  our beloved pastor, Bro. Henry Gill. His discourse was founded on Romans 13 &  13. 'And Now Abideth Faith, Hope, Charity, these Three, but the Greatest of  These is Charity'. The church was filled with ladies, so that not even the few  gentlemen present could all obtain seats.

    B. B. Martin, C. C.

In addition to Henry Gill, the church also lost, either to battle or illness,  members Hiram Parks, G. W. Smith, and George T. Stamper. Thomas Parks died in  1866, apparently never fully recovering from illnesses incurred during the war.

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