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Crooked Creek Church Records


 

Transcription of the Minutes for

The United Baptist Church of Christ on Crooked Creek

 

 

This project was undertaken by Reta DeShields Parton and Tonya Parton Williams in 2002. We proceeded from copies of microfilm which is located at the Arkansas Archives. From there, we realized there was some pages we could not read or were missing. We therefore searched for and located the original Minute Books. At this time, we made color copies of pages we were unable to read due to bleed through of ink and made copies of the missing pages. The family who holds the books now are considering placing them in the hands of an archive which will allow them to be obtained through copies. At this time, contact me, Reta Parton , if you question an entry or would like more information.

I have transcribed other minute books from churches and I would like to say the Baptist Church on Crooked Creek minutes are very clean. No dirty laundry is washed in these minutes. I do feel the original few years minutes were rewritten when they obtained a minute book. The worst you will find in these minutes is dismissing or excluding a member because of Missionary Principles.

The church was originally started as a Baptist Church with Missionary principles. Or as we know today, Missionary Baptist. They were very active in holding revivals at peoples homes. The church even decided to send committees to these meetings to "open the door to receive members" who would be members of the Crooked Creek Baptist Church. I was very surprised to see the very same members who were the committee to open the door at missionary meetings, were also the ones who promoted the hardshell or non-missionary beliefs. The church did survive this and continued on.

An interesting fact is that Linden Baines Johnsonís grandfather was the pastor of the Crooked Creek Baptist Church. During his pastorialship, he also served as a state representative. The Crooked Creek Baptist Church was in existence before Arkansas was a state. They started in 1834 and Arkansas became a state in 1836. It was originally in Carroll County. However, the area became part of Boone County in 1869. The current guardian of the book states the church was between Harrison and Lead Hill on what is now Highway 7 and is currently called Union Baptist Church. Lindon Baines Johnsonís grandmother arranged a grant which paid for the steeple for the church.

I became interested in this church through reading Roger Loganís book "History of the North Arkansas Baptist Association" In this book he states, "The Crooked Creek Baptist Church was formed on July 3, 1834. It is the oldest known church of any kind located within the present boundaries of the North Arkansas Baptist Association. (omitted text) The church was organized as a Missionary Baptist Church and sponsored several mission efforts and a number of revivals in its first years. However, it was taken over by the "hardshell" group in 1844 and a number of the members and the pastor were expelled for holding missionary principles." (page 161-162)

He also states: In the Crooked Creek Church, the hardshell element gained strength and, so, it was, that in December 1843, Sister Matilda Freeman, Brother Matthew Shipman, Sister Shipman, and Brothers Hand and Desheals applied for letters of dismission. They were granted and then a motion was made and seconded that the church break fellowship with "The Home and Foreign Missionary Principles" and "all of its various branches and all other unscriptural institutions.""

This is why I became interested. I was curious if Hand and DeShields was one or two people as my great great grandfather was Handy DeShields. Through the kind help of the Arkansas State Archives and the personal help of Jane Wilkerson, I was able to copy the first years of the minutes book and begin to get the real feel for this church and found out, yes, Handy DeShields was one person and He joined in May 1842 and requested a letter of dismission in December 1843. Handyís obituary appeared in the Buffalo Baptist Associationís Minutes who stated he was always in his seat so he stayed true to his beliefís throughout life.

Hope you enjoy these minutes. If I can assist or explain anything, please let me know.

Reta DeShields Parton

Transcribed by Reta Parton, September 30, 2002

 

 

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