January 11, 2014 by elhseven
Red River Baptist Church was started in 1849 in the Willow Chute community of Bossier parish with the following 13 charter members: James Engram, J.G. Curry, Caroline Curry, Dudley Curry, Matilda Curry, Peter Curry, Jane Curry, Adline Pouncy, William Perrit, Nancy Perrit, Selener Romby, Thomas Hamilton and Louisa Hamilton. Brother Benjamin and Sister Hermy were the first two slaves admitted as parishioners of the church within its first year of existence. The church adopted the 16 Articles of Decorum and heavily enforced member discipleship. For instance if you failed to attend 2 consecutive Saturday’s you were considered “disorderly” by the congregation. If you were ever absent thereafter, you were required to apologize to the congregation and remained in danger of having your membership excluded. They initially held church services on Saturdays but later changed to Sundays to increase attendance. Here are some other reasons for membership exclusion: dancing, using profane language, drunkenness, gaming, leaving a spouse, birthing “illegitimate” children, running away from the plantation, working slaves on the sabbath day, moving around and fishing on the sabbath. September of 1866 the church issued letters of dismal to many of the former slaves in order for them to form their own church at Goldpoint Plantation. In spite of the large exodus, there were still former slaves who chose to remain at Red River Baptist Church after Emancipation Proclamation in 1865.
The following are selected entries from the church minutes between 1862 – 1870.
June 1863- Excluded Caroline, Gama, Emiline and Lizza Buck colored members of Red River Church, servants of James Belton Pickett Jr. on Gold Point Plantation.
Sept. 1863- Restored Caroline, colored woman of James Belton Pickett Jr.
Oct. 1863- Received by experience Henry & Olla, colored people belonging to James Belton Pickett Jr. on Red Chute Plantation.
Dec. 1863- Excluded Charlotte Ann colored woman of James Belton Pickett Jr. for disorderly conduct.
Nov. 1864- During the last ten months there has been no records kept in consequence of the absence of the Clerk. The church however held its regular meetings and received four colored members on the plantation of James Belton Pickett Jr.
Jan. 1865- Received at Gold Point 3rd Sabbath, 1865 the following freed men by experience..Ving, Dolly and Nancy
Sept. 1865- Received from Cash Point by baptism the following named freedman 3rd Sun in Sept. Moses Jackson, Lucy & Mary
Oct. 1865- Received on the Cash Point plantation on the following freedmen by experience and baptized them the same day..Charrity Polly, Judy and Judy again, Mealeen and Samuel
Sept. 1866- Granted letters to the following freedmen on Gold Point Plantation, Jim Hoverkin, Frank, Randle, Jerry Tall, Lewis, Jim “Buck”, Edmund Talley, Alford, “George”, Calvin, Albert, Teague, Phillip, Dave, Jerry Whitehat, Harry, Peter, John Barrett, Ben Carrey, Sam Morris, Seborn, Wade, Jessey Brown, Gracy, Cicily, Samule, Moasy, Knack, Louisica, Elizabeth, Charles, Hester Jr., Hester Sr., Rose, Eliza, Sally, Hertia, Ellen, Caroline, Annie, Sophia, Dalphrin Jr., Louisiana, Linnese, Nancy, Charity, Lucy, Dollie, Bethenay, Amanda, Mahala, Vilot, Mary Bess, Mineva, Marcy, Josaphene, Ester, Mahala Jr., Leddia, Vilot Jr.
Sept. 1869- Received by experience the following freemen, Toby Gilliad, R. Fordinham, Andrew Williams, females.. Cary Ann, Mary Jackson, & Julia Bell and John by letter…sir name not known, once a slave of Mr. Arnold.
Oct. 1870- The following freedmen having applied were granted letter of dismissal…Reuben Pickette, Stephen Jackson, Anna Jackson, Mary Jackson, Carry Ann Lee, Emily, Adamia, Nathan Murphy, Mike Hensley and Toby Gilliard, Sarah Vaughn and Tom Jackson.
Slave Membership at Red River Church
Slave Members of Red River Church from Goldpoint Plantation
Caryl (received by sponsors)
Jerry White Hat
Moses Jackson (Cash Point)
Samuel (Cash Point)
Judy (Cash Point)
Lizzie Buck (excluded)
Olla (Red Chute)
Source: ” A Lighthouse for God”, History of Red River Baptist Church, Benton, Bossier Parish, Louisiana, 1849-1949 by James Harold Jones
Category People, Places | Tags: Adline Pouncy, Andrew Williams, Benton, Bossier parish, Cashpoint Plantation, Dudley Curry, Edmund Talley, Goldpoint Plantation, James Belton Pickett Jr., James Harold Jones, Jane Curry, Jerry Tall, Jerry Whitehat, Jessey Brown, John Barrett, Julia Bell, LA, Louisa Hamilton, Mary Jackson, Matilda Curry, Moses Jackson, Mr. Arnold, Nancy Perrit, Peter Curry, R. Fordinham, Red Chute Plantation, Red River Baptist Church, Sam Morris, Thomas Hamilton, Toby Gilliad, William Perrit, Willowchute
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