A Minute Book for the Christian Church on Busseron Creek: Record of the Christian Church at Palmers Prairie Sullivan County, Indiana. 1827? 1831?

Chloe Siner Morgan


Indiana Magazine of History, Volume 47, Issue 1, pp 111-127

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A Minute Book for the Christian Church on Busseron Creek

Record of the Christian Church at Palmers PrairieSullivan County, Indiana. 1827? 1831?

Contributed by Chloe Siner Morgan

Towards the close of the first third of the nineteenth century the teachings of Alexander Campbell and his father, Thomas, who had come over to Pennsylvania from Scotland some twenty years earlier, resulted in the organization of a distinct and separate church denomination, which Campbell's followers in 1830 chose to call The Christian Church. This was another evidence of the continuation of the Reformation, the search for the true original manner of worship. The story of this evolution, which has been most ably presented in various volumes by church historians, should be consulted for information too lengthy to be included in these pages. Let it be sufficient to say that this evidence of Campbell's teachings found immediately materialization in southern Indiana, among the pioneer settlers who were for the most part second to sixth generation Americans from Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia, as well as from eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

The little groups of homeseekers who laboriously pushed their way into that part of Knox County which in 1816 and 1818 became respectively designated Sullivan and Vigo had come by way of Kentucky or Tennessee or from across the Miami bottoms in Ohio. Often families had divided along the way, older brothers or parents stopping and the younger ones traveling farther into the wilderness. Thus there continued through the first generation after the progression the tendency to keep in touch with the relatives left behind. And as for the county lines of Sullivan and Vigo, as well as Knox, they had no reality. There was much visiting back and

  • ∗ Mrs. Chloe Siner Morgan, a resident of Bloomington, is the wife of the late Dr. William Thomas Morgan, professor of European history at Indiana University, 1919-1946, with whom she collaborated in the five volume Bibliography of British History, 1700-1715; with Special Reference to the Reign of Queen Anne (1934-1942). She was one time assistant professor of English in Iowa State Teachers College, and lecturer in English in the Ecole Normale des Institutrices, Blois, France.
forth, and even much moving back and forth. Distinctly Vigo families had in many instances taken first root in Sullivan, and vice versa.

As to ancestral nativity the earliest settlers in both counties were generally English, Scots, or Scots Irish (Scots who had been living in Ireland for generations), Irish, and Pennsylvania Dutch first settlers in Germantown (1683-1710) who had intermarried with English families from New York, New Jersey, and New England, and a few whose names indicated German origin. There was a sprinkling of those with Anglicized French names dating from the invasion of the British Isles by William the Conqueror with his French barons. A few there were who could have traced their ancestry to the Mayflower or to a New England provincial governor, or even to the early nobility of Great Britain, had they possessed the time, the inclination, or the facilities to determine such connections. Some families handed down oral traditions of estates in "the Old Country" or of service in the recent American Revolution and its aftermath, the short flurry of 1812.

As for their religious heritage, there were those from Church of England families, Baptists, Presbyterians, and others who had come to America as Quakers but through intermarriage had changed to Presbyterians, then Baptists and Primitive Baptist. Here in the wilderness they wanted a church as soon as possible. The earliest church in the community of which Palmers Prairie in Sullivan County was a part was a Baptist (Missionary) instituted in 1821 on the neighboring prairie named for the William Curry family, the first to build a cabin there. When this little church (Little Flock, a mile southwest of Shelburn) celebrated its centennial, the claim was made that it was the oldest church in the county. Whether or not the original Palmers Prairie Church situated a few miles from Busseron Creek, was the first Christian church in the county can be determined only if other churches examine their records, and publish them. At any rate the early membership list includes persons from the region of Caledonia, Cass, and Shakers Prairie (between Oaktown and Carlisle), and the place where Sullivan was later established.

Indeed, this little record book of Palmers Prairie offers certain date problems in connection with that church's establishmen. An examination of the two title pages encourages speculation. An examination of the inside pages discloses conflicting dates. One can only arrive at an approximate date; for this is undoubtedly not the first record ever kept.

Below the carefully printed first page title appears in a less firm hand a date which might be 1837, 1857, or—more likely—1831. But it might be 1859, the date that is found near the top of the first membership list, after the names of Elders John Maxwell and Thomas Nesbit! Then, below that date at the right hand corner of the page are the words: "Organized Jan. 17 183 [MS torn]."

The second title page only adds to the confusion. Above the title, prominently placed in the middle of the space, is the unmistakable date, 1827. But across the top of the figures are two thin crossed curved lines. Can this be intended as a deletion or as a pen flourish by way of decoration?

On the seventh page from the back of the book, the puzzle becomes more intricate. Here one finds an attempt towards making a summary of the original church officers. This attempted date results in: "Church organized in 1831. (1827)-"

We are still in the dark; but considering the 1830 separation of the Christian church from the Baptist Association, we are inclined to favor the date, 1831. Perhaps the discovery of the deed for the land upon which the old church and its cemetery stands, or a time-yellowed letter in a family Bible may sometime disclose the truth. Whatever the true date may be, this little list of names which includes those of individuals remembered to be living there even before 1831, should offer considerable stimulus towards genealogical research.

There are certain features within the book which point towards a still earlier membership list, whether ever recorded or not. Among internal evidences is the absence of the names of several persons contemporaneous with the founding of the church. Indeed, comparatively few of the persons of mature years living in the community in 1830 seem to be listed in these pages. Among these few are the Elders John Maxwell and his wife, Thomas Nesbit, and Rebecca Benefield, who seems to be the mother of G. W., Willis, John, Sally McGrew, Susan Liston, and Mary. Possibly there are many more. One name which one might expect to find is that of Andrew McGarvey, who according to family tradition and that of William G. McClannahan, sexton for almost a generation during the middle period, was the first person buried in Palmers Prairie Cemetery. One fails to find either his name or that of his wife, Nancy Ellen, though she long survived him and is likely buried in the Old Shake Cemetery near Paxton, the community of her daughter, Nellie (Mrs. Whita-ker Purcell). One son of this couple, Ezekiel (b. January 1, 1811; d. April 6, 1877), who with his second wife, Martha Lou Rainey (Borders McKinley) and his third wife, Mary Ann Raines, are recorded in this book, is buried in this churchyard.

This family is said to have come from Ireland about 1819 and settled first on Turkey Creek between Lexington and Louisville, Kentucky. The eldest son of Andrew, Samuel, lived there until the end of the Civil War, then moved to Honey Creek Hill, now known as Alandale, at the southern edge of Harrison Prairie and a few miles south of Terre Haute. Both he and his wife are buried in the Hull Cemetery. Two other sons, John and James, remained in Kentucky. Andrew and his wife and the two youngest children, after a few years in Kentucky came to Palmers Prairie before the church was built there. They assisted in operating a cooperative store and distillery on the ground where the church now stands, bearing their share of the flatboat building and operating to and from New Orleans in the store's interest. They owned several farms on Palmers Prairie where they manufactured brick and tile, and another a few miles southeast of Shelburn. Ezekiel once owned the land where Sullivan Courthouse now stands. Through Andrew's and Nancy Ellen's brothers and sisters Ezekiel was a first cousin to Russell McKinley of Sullivan, for whose daughter the hospital is named, and to the Beard brothers and sisters: Felix, John, Stephen, and their sister, Mrs. Edward Roll of Sullivan and Vigo counties, as well as to the Jane (Russell) Hill of this record, and her brother Spencer Russell, all of whom had come from Kentucky. Another cousin was the second wife of Joseph William Wolfe, early Christian preacher, and lawyer from 1860, and Circuit Court clerk of Sullivan.

We cannot be certain about the generation of the earliest Raines name on the record, since the use of senior and junior here makes for confusion. William I (d. June 7, 1873), a pensioner of the War of 1812, married "Peggy Damson," really Margaret Dampster, in 1817, according to the Mercer County Marriage Records at Harrodsburg, Kentucky. They were living at Frankfort, Kentucky, shortly before their migration to Palmers Prairie when their fourth child, Mary Ann (b. February 14, 1826) was three months old. This William, whose middle name was Pendleton, had a son William, whose son William is still living in Sullivan County. All these William Raines's were members of Palmer Prairie Church. William Raines I had also a son Allen, an uncle Allen who moved to Illinois, and a brother Allen (b. March 20, 1797; m. Rosanna Parker, September 6, 1821, in Mercer County, Kentucky; d. April 20, 1873). The names of several of the children of this couple appear on the early pages of this record. The son William Mereday handed down to his grandson Bert M. of Terre Haute the almost unique name, Mereday. This son William Mereday and his sister, Elizabeth Ferree, were ever closely associated with the Prairie and its church. Other sons and daughters left the community. After the death of his wife, Rosanna, Allen moved in the early sixties to Sedalia, Missouri, with his son Cornelius. There were other Raines brothers: James, reputedly a Revolutionary soldier and never married, and Adam who had no children. A sister, Elizabeth, was the second wife of William Patton and had two daughters. Another, probably Mary, married a Hawkins. Still another, Sally, married George Plough, according to the Mercer County records, June 5, 1819. This George Plough was one of the old-fashioned "bleeding doctors" of the community. These were the parents of Dr. George Plough, a graduate of Rush Medical College, who practiced medicine at Hymera until he was ninety.

Possibly some of the Raines brothers and sisters remained in Kentucky or even in Tennessee or possibly Virginia, the colony to which this southern Raines line came from England at a very early period. Some light upon the origin and history of the first years of this Virginia line and its branch that went into Georgia is shed by a Georgia branch descendant, Stella Pickett Hardy, in her Colonial Families of the Southern States of America (New York, 1911). Much has been written about Captain John Raines who, under General James Robertson, assisted towards the end of the American Revolution in opening up Tennessee and Kentucky. No one, however, has attempted to discover the thread of relationship which likely existed between Captain John and the Mereday Raines of this Tennessee expedition with the Harrodsburg Raines brothers and sisters who in 1826 and somewhat later moved into Palmers Prairie.

Similar digressions might be made in the discussion of others of the early settlers of Palmers Prairie, whose names, it seems, might be expected to appear on these minutes, if they are indeed the earliest minutes. We must make due consideration, of course, to our lack of knowledge of many of these families and to the known fact that the early families were divided within themselves as to denominational allegiance. We must take into consideration, also, the possibility that some of the earliest generation there were Presbyterian or Anglican and still held to these faiths, despite the absence of these church homes in the region.

The deciding evidence against these minutes as a first list of members lies not so much in the omissions as in the inclusions. Some of the names which appear on the first pages of this book are recognized as those who were in their infancy when the church was founded. Some were not then even living in that part of Indiana or in Indiana at all. Among these names should be pointed out those of Susan Ann (Benefield) Liston (b. February 5, 1824, in Lawrence County, Indiana, to William and Rebecca (Bailey) Benefield) and her husband, Edmund (b. December 7, 1814, to William and Nancy (Patton) Liston). Another such name is that of Susan Ann's sister-in-law, Elizabeth Jane (McGrew) Benefield (Mrs. G. W.) who was born in Sullivan County, August 14, 1837, to Felix G. McGrew and his wife, Julia Ann Pound.

Another factor which makes more intricate this maze is that caused by the repetitions of names in the several revisions of the record; yet all this seems to be sufficient data to place this record as one belonging to about 1859, the date which appears after the names of Elders John Maxwell and Thomas Nesbit. If any whose ancestors appear in this list will search their family Bible records and their old deeds and marriage certificates, much more light may be shed upon this early Christian church community of fertile meadows through which flows the creek which rises in the vicinity of Blackhawk and empties its waters into the Wabash in the vicinity of Oaktown, that creek which memorializes Major Frangois R. Busseron who assisted Colonel George Rogers Clark in the taking of Vincennes (Fort Sackville).

Those who would seek out this little white church and its interesting cemetery, possibly a last resting place as early as 1822, will have little difficulty in finding it. Palmers Prairie is one of a series of small prairies which dot the Wabash Valley from Vincennes to Terre Haute. This particular prairie about which twines the once exuberant Busseron and its tributaries, Stonequarry and "Kittle" Creek, is situated at the near center of a triangle of which Shelburn (laid out in 1855), Sullivan (incorporated in 1853), and Caledonia are the points. The church is closer to Shelburn than to Sullivan, and the nearest group of houses is the little coal town, Glen-dora, which had its origin shortly after 1903 when the deep coal veins began to be exploited by outside interests.

  1. John Maxwell
  2. Mary M. Maxwell
  3. Thomas Nesbit
  4. Elisabeth Nesbit
  5. Levi Maxwell
  6. Lidia Maxwell
  7. Jackson Rich
  8. Sally A. Rich
  9. Jane Hill
  10. Edmund Liston
  11. Susan A. Liston
  12. Talton Hawkins
  13. Mary M. Hawkins
  14. Sarah Houston
  15. Mary L. Brodie
  16. Sarah L. Nesbit
  17. Eliza A. Nesbit
  18. Armina M. Moore
  19. Solomon Ring and
  20. Wife
  21. Julia Marlow
  22. George Marlow
  23. Sarah Marlow
  24. Elisabeth Walls
  25. Sabra Rich
  26. David Ferguson, Sen.
  27. Lucy Ferguson
  28. William Mitcheal
  29. Sarah Carrithers
  30. Russell Mitcheal
  31. Sarah Mitcheal
  32. Elisabeth Mitcheal
  33. Averilla Grigsby
  34. Nancy Malone
  35. Mary Carter
  36. Uriah F[er]ree
  37. Elisabeth F[er]ree
  38. Rosa Rain[e]s
  39. Cornelius Rain[e]s
  40. Naoma J. Rain[e]s
  41. Sarilda Rain[e]s
  42. William Rain[e]s, Sen.
  43. David Ferguson, Jun.
  44. Lucinda Fe[r]guson
  45. William Walls
  46. Malissa Walls
  47. John Mitcheal
  48. Rebecca Mitchell
  49. Rebecca Skinner
  50. Rebecca Benefield
  51. Rebecca Osborn
  52. David Plough
  53. Nancy Plough
  54. Joshua Stark
  55. Lucinda Stark
  56. Sarah A. Stark
  57. Abraham Stark
  58. Daniel A. Stark
  59. Friend Lemons
  60. Rebecca Lemons
  61. John B. Wagoner
  62. John Trublood
  63. Netacris Trublood
  64. Margaret Walls
  65. Jane McKinl[e]y
  66. Mary A. Hill
  67. Reece M. Nesbit
  68. Mary E. Nesbit
  69. Benjamin Malone
  70. William Rain[e]s, Jun.
  71. Leanah McKimmy
  72. Thomas T. Nesbit, Jun.
  73. Sarah J. Mitcheal
  74. Nancy D. Rain[e]s
  75. Sarah Malone
  76. Sarah Brock
  77. Polly Brock
  78. Harlen Walters
  79. Samuel Patton
  80. Mary Patton
  81. Elisabeth Rusher
  82. Miner Rusher
  83. Polly Rusher
  84. Luticia Ingle
  85. William Wetherman and
  86. Wife
  87. William Rowe
  88. Elisabeth A. Walls
  89. James Rain[e]s
  90. William Chowning
  91. Nancy Bo[t]ts
  92. Lucinda Bo[t]ts
  93. Sarah Walls
  94. Wesley Plough
  95. Margaret Cochron
  96. Mary J. Benefield
  97. James McGarv[e]y
  98. Micheal Borders
  99. Nancy Borders
  100. Sarah Boats [Botts]
  101. John Bailey
  102. Elisabeth Bailey
  103. Walker Rusher
  104. Sarah Plough
  105. Nancy Plough
  106. Plough
  107. William Shaw
  108. Martin Elliott
  109. George Brock
  110. Rebecka Brock
  111. Wm. Rusher
  112. Jamima Hart
  113. Elizabeth Borders
  114. Ezekiel McGarv[e]y
  115. Martha McGarv[e]y
  116. Wm. Breaheave [Breedlove]
  117. Mary Jane Miller
  118. Bonwell D. Miller
  119. Samuel McClanihan [McClannahan]
  120. Polly McClanihan [McClannahan]
  121. Samuele Hopewell
  122. Sarah Hopewell
  123. Alford Caise
  124. Abriham Stark
  125. Daniel A. Stark
  126. Sarah F[er]ree
  127. Wm. Patton
  128. Elizabeth Patton
  129. Owens Nesbit
  130. Daniel Case
  131. Lusinda Case
  132. Wm. C. McClanihan [McClannahan]
  133. Elizabeth McKinley
  134. Wm. R. Maxwell
  135. Rebeca Maxwell
  136. Rachel Wagoner
  137. Naoma Wagoner
  138. Eliza Ann Listen
  139. Sarah Elizabeth Hawkins
  140. Sabra Jane Rich
  141. Perry Maxwell
  142. Robert Skinner
  143. Adam Hawkins
  144. Stephen Lovelace
  145. Martin Akim McClan[n]ahan
  146. Wm. Skinner
  147. Samuel Dudley
  148. Mrs. Jane Dudley
  • Hillekiah Lovelace
  • John Bowles
  • Sarah Bowles
  • John T. Beard
  • Elden Davis
  • Elizabeth Raines
  • Anna Akers
  • Phebe A. Combs
  • Louisa Siner
  • Hester A. Botts
  • F. M. Botts
  • Mary Raines
  • Joseph D. McClan [n] ahan
  • Melinda Shaw
  • Letty Bailey
  • Leonard Borders
  • Jonathan Davis
  • Perlina Davis
  • Lydia Davis
  • Elizabeth Bennifield
  • Margaret J. Riley
  • Tarlton Hawkins
  • Permilia J. Ingle
  • Mrs. Draper
  • Synthia Melone
  • Polly Melone
  • Thomas B. Skinner
  • George W. Patten
  • Robt. A. Mitchel
  • Benjamin Stice
  • America Stice
  • Mary J. Boles
  • Mrs. Cahill
  • Jane Stanley
  • Mary Ferree
  • Mary J. Nesbit
  • Jackson Rich, Jun.
  • George B. Hawkins
  • Lewis Hale

Revision of the Church Book at Palmer's Prairie, Sullivan Co. Indiana.

  • John Bailey
  • John Maxwell
  • Thomas Nesbit
  • Elizabeth Nesbit
  • Jane Hill
  • Susan A. Listen
  • Tarlton Hawkins
  • Sarah Houston
  • Mary L. Brodie
  • Sarah J. Beard
  • Eliza A. Curry
  • Armina M. Moore
  • Solomon Ring and Wife
  • Elizabeth Wall
  • Sabra Mitchel
  • Russel Mitchel
  • Averilla Grigsby
  • Nancy Breedlove
  • Uriah Ferree
  • Elizabeth Ferree
  • Naoma J. Raines
  • Cerilda Raines
  • David Ferguson
  • Lucinda Ferguson
  • Wm. Wall
  • Melissa Wall
  • Rebeca Skinner
  • Rebecca Bennifield
  • Rebecca Osburn
  • John Trueblood
  • Netacris Trueblood
  • Mary A. Hill
  • Rees M. Nesbit
  • Mary E. Nesbit
  • Benjamin Melone
  • Wm. Raines, Jun.
  • Thomas T. Nesbit
  • Nancy D. Raines
  • Sarah Lovelace
  • Samuel Patton
  • Mary Wagoner
  • Elizabeth Botts
  • Minor Rusher
  • Polly Rusher
  • Elizabeth A. Walls
  • James Raines
  • John W. Plew
  • Margaret Cochran
  • Mary J. Bennifield
  • Michael Borders
  • Sarah Cunningham
  • Ezekial McGarv[e]y
  • Martha McGarv[e]y
  • Wm. Breedlove
  • Mary J. Miller
  • B. D. Miller
  • Samuel McClanahan
  • Mary or (Polly McClan[n]ahan
  • Samuel Hopewell
  • Sarah Hopewell
  • Wm. Patton
  • Elizabeth Patton
  • Campbell O. Nesbit
  • Daniel Case
  • Lucinda Case
  • Wm. C. McClan[n]ahan
  • Elizabeth McKinley
  • Wm R. Maxwell
  • Rebecca Maxwell
  • Rachel Wagoner
  • Naoma Wagoner
  • Eliza A. Listen
  • Sarah E. Hawkins
  • Sabra J. Rich
  • Wm. P. Maxwell
  • Robert Skinner
  • Adam Hawkins
  • Stephen Lovelace
  • Martin A. McClan[n]ahan
  • Jane Dudley
  • Hillekiah Lovelace
  • John Bowles
  • Sarah Bowles
  • John T. Beard
  • Eleanor Davis
  • Elizabeth Raines
  • Anna Akers
  • Phebe Combs
  • Louisa Siner
  • Hester A. Botts
  • Mary Rain[e]s McGarv[e]y
  • Joseph D. McClan[n]ahan
  • Melinda Shaw
  • Letty Bailey
  • Leonard Borders
  • Johnathan Davis
  • Permilia Davis
  • Lydia Davis
  • Elizabeth Bennifield
  • Margaret J. Riley
  • Permilia Ingle
  • Synthia Melone
  • Polly Melone
  • Thomas B. Skinner
  • George W. Patton
  • Benjamin Stice
  • America Stice
  • Mary J. Bowles
  • Mrs. Cahill
  • Mary Ferree Skinner
  • Mary J. Nesbit
  • Jackson Rich, Jun.
  • George R. Hawkins
  • Lewis Hale
  • John T. McClan[n]ahan
  • Elizabeth Bailey
  • Miss Nancy D. Plew
  • Francis Doty
  • Sarah Doty
  • Rebecca Wall
  • Anderson Ward
  • Elizabeth Ward
  • Wm. M. Raines
  • Alvire Raines, his Wife
  • James Smith
  • Nancy Smith
  • Wm. Hainey
  • Mary E. Hainey
  • Georg Hainey
  • Margaret J. Bailey
  • John Lovelace
  • Cornelius D. Raines
  • Catharine Raines
  • Nancy J. Stice
  • Sarah Perkizer
  • Nancy J. Smock
  • Stephen Ferguson
  • Leah Ferguson
  • Julia Ferree
  • Sarah Rusher
  • Elizabeth Gambol
  • John Mitchel
  • Elizabeth Mitchel
  • Thomas Hale
  • Thomas Hale
  • James S. Neal
  • Sarah A. Badders
  • Eliza Badders
  • G. W. Badders
  • Peter Houck
  • Sarah Houck
  • Elzee Rusher and wife
  • Tho. J. Robbins
  • Margaret M. Robbins
  • Eld. G. W. A. Luzader
  • Charlotte Luzader
  • Sarah Ward
  • Nancy Ward
  • Eld. Levi Woodward and wife
  • Eld. Thomas Wolfe and wife
  • Thomas Chambers and wife
  • Mary A[nn] Raines

Names Palmers Prairie Church

  1. Lucinda Woodward
  2. John Boles
  3. Mary A. Boles, his wife
  4. George H. Pirtle and
  5. Wife
  6. Tenyason Wagoner
  7. Thomas Nesbit and
  8. Wife
  9. J. S. Park and
  10. Wife
  11. Thomas T. Nesbit, Jun.
  12. Mary J. Nesbit
  13. William Wall
  14. Barthada Wall
  15. Nancy Jane Wolfe
  16. George W. Wolfe
  17. and Wife
  18. John Wall
  19. J. D. McClan[n]ahan
  20. James Bunch
  21. and Wife
  22. Eleck Davis
  23. Elizabeth Hawkins
  24. Simira Marlow
  25. Stephen Moser
  26. Maryann Engle
  27. Sintha Cox
  28. John Wolfe
  29. Ellen Keen
  30. John Houstain
  31. and Wife
  32. Oregon Marlow
  33. Nathan Wells
  34. Tidwell Bidle
  35. James H. Hill
  36. Ransom Hawkins
  37. Samuel McGarv[e]y
  38. John Cahhal
  39. Sarah E. Osburn
  40. Mary Bell Osburn
  41. Hattie Bailey
  42. Emerrine Bennett
  43. Delia Boles
  44. Abraham Mahan
  45. Albert Smith
  46. Allice E. Smith
  47. Jenette Hummel
  48. Charles Smith
  49. Joseph Hill
  50. Jacob Pirtel
  51. Elizabeth Ward
  52. Mary Wall
  53. Marcus Wolfe
  54. Aaron E. Wolfe
  55. William Tool
  56. Henry Gambill and Wife
  • Elder William Holt and
  • Rhoda Holt, his Wife
  • Elizabeth Benifield
  • Josie Holt
  • Adam Raines and Wife
  • Aaron Sluder and Wife

November, 1879

  1. Gertrude Hendricks
  2. Minary Houston
  3. Myrta A. Ford
  4. Hannah Hummel
  5. Catharine Ward
  6. Jane Melone
  7. Narcissus Hill
  8. Hettie Botts
  9. Mary Ann Keen
  10. Albert Hill
  11. James F. McClan[n]ahan
  12. Joseph Wolfe
  13. Gertrude Benefield
  14. Joey Nesbit
  15. Flora Marlow
  16. Aetna Shelburn [e]
  17. Frank Hawkins
  18. Leona Benefield
  19. Lizzie Shelburn
  20. James F. Raines
  21. Thomas E. Ward
  22. James Steele
  23. Olla Smith
  24. Armilda Keen
  25. Ann Willis
  26. Robert P. Raines
  27. Alexander Davis and Wife
  28. M. A. McClan[n]ahan
  29. and Wife
  30. Deella Boles
  31. Lina Crawford
  32. Charles Smith
  33. Henderson Boles
  34. Winny A. Plew
  35. Margaret Marlow
  36. Will McKinley
  37. B. W. Fry
  38. and Wife
  39. Anna Hawkins
  40. Thomas Nesbit, Jr. and Wife
  41. John Roberts and his Wife
  42. Pleasant Miller
  43. Margaret Hoskins

November, 1882

  1. Tacy Luzader
  2. Josephine Chastain
  3. Mellissa Chastain
  4. Missouri Chastain
  5. James Bilyew and Wife
  6. Lyman Ford and Wife
  7. Martha McClan [n] ahan
  8. Sarah Arnett
  9. Samuel Patton and Wife
  10. John Hawkins and Wife
  11. Jesse Powel and family
  12. John W. Cooney
  13. Kate Brodie
  14. Parthada Hawkine
  15. Mary Coulson
  16. Jennie Raines

April 26, 1886

  • John Mosi
  • Manda Bylyew

Church organized in 1831. (1827)-the Church on Busseron Creek-300 members or more all together.

First two elders John Maxwell
Thomas Nesbit
First two deacons Levis Maxwell
Jackson Rich
Pres [ent] Eld [ers] T. J. Wolfe
N. Ferree
J. N. Bilyew 1886
Thomas Nesbit, Sr.
Pres[ent] Deacons Wm. G. McClan[n]ahan
John B. Hawkins
Samuel Patton
Thomas T. Nesbit, Sr.
Pres [ent] Tr. U. Ferree
J. N. Bilyew
Treasurer Bilyew
Clerk Wm. M. Raines

Revision of Palmer's Prairie Church Record, February 14, 1886

  • 1. Mrs. Jane Hill
  • 2. Mrs. Susan A. Liston
  • 3. Uriah Ferree and Wife
  • 5. Mrs. Sarah Houston
  • 6. Mrs. Rebecca Benefield
  • 7. Benjamin Melone, and Wife
  • 8. Mrs. Polly Rusher
  • 9. Miss Mary J. Benefield
  • 10. Wm. H. Rusher and Wife
  • 12. Mrs. Sabra Jane Marlow
  • 13. Mrs. Ellen Raines
  • 14. Marion Botts and Wife
  • 16. Mrs. Mary McGarvey
  • 17. J. D. McClan[n]ahan
  • 18. Jonathan Davis and wife
  • 20. Wm. G. McClan[n]ahan and wife
  • 22. Mrs. G. W. Benefield (Eliz.)
  • 23. Mrs. Willis Benefield (Eliz.) 50.
  • 24. Mrs. Elizabeth Botts
  • 25. Mrs. Sarah Cunningham
  • 26. Wm. M. Raines and Wife
  • 28. Miss Nancy Ward
  • 29. Eld. T. J. Wolfe and Wife
  • 31. Mrs. Samira Crawford
  • 32. Mrs. Mary Ann Houpt
  • 33. Miss Cyntha Cox
  • 34. Miss Elizabeth Ward
  • 35. Mrs. Belle Cass
  • 36. James Houston and Wife Sarah Cox William Marlow and Wife Adam Raines and Wife The "faithful" which came in under the preaching of Rev. Ingram, Nov., 1879.
  • 38. Minary Houston
  • 39. Mrs. Joseph Wolfe
  • 40. Catherine Ward
  • 41. Jane Melone
  • 42. Mrs. Hettie Wyman
  • 43. Mary Ann Keen
  • 44. Josie Nesbit
  • 45. Flora Marlow
  • 46. James F. Raines and Wife
  • 48. Thomas E. Ward
  • 49. James Steele
  • 50. Armilda Keen
  • 51. Alex Davis and Wife
  • 53. Martin A. McClan[n]ahan and Wife
  • 55. Mrs. Winny A. Plew
  • 56. Maggie Marlow
  • 57. Thos. T. Nesbit (Jun.) and Wife
  • 59. Mrs. Maggie Wilson

The "faithful" who came in under Rev. Ingrain's preaching Nov. 1882.

  • 60. Miss Tacy Luzader
  • 61. Mrs. Josephine Raines
  • 62. Mrs. Melissa Smith
  • 63. Miss Missouri Chastain
  • 64. James Bilyew and wife 66. Samuel Patton and wife
  • 68. John B. Hawkins and wife
  • 69. Miss Katie Brodie
  • 70. Mrs. Parthada Hawkins
  • 71. John Mosier
  • 72. Mrs. Lena Maxwell
  • 73. Aaron Sluder and wife

Those who came in under Rev. J. W. Perkins' Preaching, Feb., 1886.

  • 1. Flora Raines
  • 2. Jonathan Raines
  • 3. Matilda Hill
  • 4. Sylvester McGrew and wife
  • 6. Marion Delapp
  • 7. Anne Davis
  • 8. Henry Smith
  • 9. Mollie Wall
  • 10. Stella McGarvey
  • 11. Oliver Smith
  • 12. Mary Raines
  • 13. Mattie Ward
  • 14. Lizzie Shelburn [e]
  • 15. James Ferree
  • 16. Geo. F. Botts
  • 17. Thos Nesbit, (Sen.), and wife
  • 19. Joe Hill and wife
  • 21. Jeannette Hummel
  • 22. Joseph Wolfe
  • 23. Maggie Raines
  • 24. Maggie Houston
  • 25. Ella Davis
  • 26. Geo. Ferree and wife
  • 28. Hannah Cunningham
  • 29. Laura Wall
  • 30. John Ward
  • 31. Willie Kirk
  • 32. Joseph Wyman
  • 33. Wm. Wall and wife
  • 35. Achsah Benefield
  • 36. John Hardy Siner
  • 37. Etna Shelburn [e]
  • 38. Ceph Shelburn [e]
  • 39. Sintha Delapp
  • 40. John A. Wilson

November, 1886

  • 41. Mrs. Kate Ward
  • 42. Nannie Skinner
  • 43. Luie McClan[n]ahan
  • 44. Rennie C. Wall
  • 45. John E. Neal
  • 46. Mary Neal, his wife
  • 47. Robert Benefield
  • 48. Tarlton Hawkins
  • 49. Emma Park
  • 50. Noah Bridwell
  • 51. Reason Nesbit
  • 52. Mary E. Nesbit
  • 53. Mollie A. Nesbit
  • 54. William Cunningham
  • 55. Ranson Cunningham
  • 56. Sue Ward
  • 57. Perry Davis
  • 58. Samuel Wolfe
  • 59. James Carrithers
  • 60. Dora Marlow

November, 1891

  • 1. George Brow [n] ing,
  • 2. Lillie Pain
  • 3. Stella Rich
  • 4. Ida Botts
  • 5. Dela Botts
  • 6. Mrs. [William, Jr.] Shelburn[e]
  • 7. Jackson Rich
  • 8. Fanny A. Rusher
  • 9. William Shelburn [e], Jr.


  1. Mrs. Akers
  2. Nervie Tipton
  3. Sattie Davis
  4. May Mosier

Those who came in under the Preaching of Jessie Wilson, 1894.

  1. Inis Bailey
  2. Duglas Rich
  3. Mrs. Hendricks
  4. Tressie Bailey
  5. Maggie C. Ward
  6. Lola Bailey
  7. Flora Botts
  8. Flora Pain
  9. Harvy Tipton
  10. Perry Davis
  11. Fanny Marlow
  12. Mrs. Mosier

Those who became members of Palmer's Prairie Church under the preaching of brother Jesse Wilson in the year, 1895.

  • J. H. McBride
  • Thomas Taylor
  • Ida Marcum
  • Lovelace
  • Ira Wence
  • Gertrude Hendricks
  • Bertha Rich
  • Ora Hendricks

Those persons who became members of the Church of Christ at Palmer's Prairie under the preaching of Bro. Williams.

  • Dec. 26 Gertie Ward
  • Dec. 27 John Wence
  • Dec. 27 Mrs. John Wence

Members received during preaching of Bro. H. C. Shaw, Nov. 4, 1899.

  • David Hummel
  • Cordia Nesbit
  • Claude Raines
  • Eva Davis
  • Alice Davis
  • Bertha Hendricks
  • Elsie Hendricks
  • Ethel Hendricks
  • William Miller
  • E. McClellan Leach
  • William Raines [III]
  • Ida Raines [his wife]
  • Luella Gray
  • Claude Raines
  • Flavia Rusher
  • James F. Akers
  • Joseph Sommers
  • Ethel Case
  • Ed Engle
  • Maude Rich
  • Susie Tipton
  • Elmer Chastain

All the above came into the Body of Christ by Immersion.

  • Albert Wright
  • Mrs. Albert Wright
  • Nora Wright


  • Joel Rusher

December 1903

  • Glenn Mosier
  • Lucky Case
  • Dan Burroughs

Published by the Indiana University Department of History.