Nashville Churches of Christ History Facebook group

Nashville Churches of Christ History group is open to anyone interested in the history of the Stone-Campbell Movement in Nashville and Davidson County, Tennessee. When I began the group about three years ago I said this:

I envision this community as a place to share common interest in the rich story of the Stone-Campbell Movement in Nashville. I am conducting research for a book which will highlight each congregation of Churches of Christ and Christian Churches from the 1810’s to the present…basically the entire movement from its beginning in our city until now. I envision this group as a place to share memories, photos, news and generate discussion and interest. Please join and contribute. Please feel free to contact me directly at icekm (at) aol (dot) com.

Since readership for this blog is significantly higher now than it was in 2010, let me offer another invitation.  The group is open to all. Help spread the word and generate interest. (astogetherwestandandsing…)

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Name Authority for Nashville, Tennessee Stone-Campbell Congregations

Name Authority for Nashville Tennessee Stone-Campbell Congregations, September 2012

Click above to download a document listing 319 variants of time-, place- and character-names for the 227 known congregations of the Stone-Campbell movement in Nashville and Davidson County, Tennessee from 1812 to September 2012.

To my knowledge my work in this area is the only such compilation, and therefore, the most complete.  The initial publication of the list to this blog was in May 2010 as a first step in my research toward a book on the Restoration Movement in Nashville.  I blogged then:

With over 200 congregations in this county, the congregational research alone will take years, perhaps the remainder of my life.  If I live to be 100 I may not finish even a rudimentary survey.  It may be too much:  too many congregations, too many preachers, too much ‘story’ to tell.

But this is where I am at the present.  I publish the list here to generate interest, additions, subtractions, corrections and clarifications.  Look it over and if I need to make changes, please let me know.

While congregational history is only one aspect of this project, this is where it all played out…on the ground in the congregations on a weekly basis.  Few congregations have attempted more than a list of preachers or a narrative of the expansion of the church building.  What I propose, as I wrote above, may be too much…too far to the other extreme.  But that fact changes not one whit the necessity of it being done.

The story of these churches in Nashville needs to be told.  I ask for your help in telling it.  look over my list; I solicit your critique. Contact me at icekm [at] aol [dot] com.

(The first version of the name authority, from May 2010, can be found here.)

Stone-Campbell Movement congregations in Nashville One Hundred Years Ago

Christian Churches as listed in the 1912 Nashville City Directory:

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CHRISTIAN

Belmont Avenue Church, Grand av n e cor 16th av.

Boscobel Street Church – r 401 S 17th

Carroll Street Church of Christ – 96 Carroll. Rev. Owen Henry, pastor; h 98 Carroll

Cherokee Park Church of Christ – 6113 California Av. No regular pastor.

Eastland Church, Gallatin rd s w cor Sharpe av.

Eleventh Street Christian Church Mission – 515 S 11th.

Foster Street Church – 210 Foster

Grandview Heights Church – w s Nolensville rd 2 s of Woodbine

Green Street Church – 146 Green. Elder J G Allen, pastor; h 132 Green

Highland Church of Christ – s s Powhattan av 2 w of 25th av S.  No pastor.

Hinton’s Chapel – e s Orlando av 2 s of Charlotte rd.

Jo Johnston Avenue Church – 1703 Jo Johston av.  No pastor.

Jones Avenue Church – w s Jones 1 s of Trinity

Joseph Avenue Church – Richardson s w cor Joseph av.

Lawrence Avenue Church – n s Lawrence av 2 w of Elliott av.

New Shops Church – 27th av s w cor Torbett av.  No pastor.

North Spruce Street Church – 1217 8th av N.

Park Avenue Church – Park av s w cor 37th av.

Reid Avenue Church – Reid av s w cor Ridley av.

Scovel Street Church – 1717 Scovel. Elder Lytton Alley, pastor; h 1035 Monroe

Seventeenth Street Church – 1700 Fatherland.  Elder H. M. Stansifer, pastor

Sixth Avenue Mission – 1801 6th av N.  Elder T. B. Moody, pastor.

South College Street Church – 805 3d av S.  Elder Cornelius A Moore, pastor; h 69 Carroll.

Tenth Street Church – 10th s e cor Russell.  Elder E. G. Sewell, pastor; h 801 Boscobel.

Twelfth Avenue Church – 1816 12th av N.

Vine Street Church – 140 7th av N.  Elder Carey E Morgan, pastor.

Warioto Settlement – Hume nr 8th av N.

West Nashville Church –Charlotte av n e cor 46th av.

Westwood Church – Hefferman s e cor 26th sv.

Woodland Street Church – 507 Woodland.  Elder R. Lin Cave, pastor, h 230 Woodland.

Colored

Church of Christ – 1308 Jackson.

Lea Avenue Church – 709 Lea av.  Rev Preston Taylor, pastor; h 449 4th av N.

Second Church – 706 Gay

Willow Street Church – South Hill s w cor Willow.  Rev A J Lawrence, pastor; h w s Willow 1 s of South Hill

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Nashville City Directory 1912.  Nashville: Marshall-Bruce-Polk Company, 1912, p. 64.

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The Nashville City Directory lists thirty-four “Christian” congregations; four of these are ‘colored,’ the remainder are white.  The city directories are rather consistent in locating the meeting places of the churches if not by street address then by approximate location.  For example, Second Christian Church is located at 706 Gay Street in the northern shadow of the state capital in the heart of the city.  In the southern suburbs of the city, the Willow Street congregation evidently lacks a street address; it can be located, however, by looking at the southwest corner of the intersection of South Hill and Willow Streets.  The Willow Street pastor’s residence is on the west side of Willow Street, one house south of the intersection.  The abbreviations may be tedious, but they are helpful.

Eleven pastors are listed; nine are white and two ‘colored.’  Both African-American pastors are Reverend.  While the conservative congregations shunned the use of “pastor” as a moniker for their regular located preachers or ministers, a number of these congregations rely on regular minister to do most, if not all, of the regular preaching.  Of the eleven ‘pastors’ six preach for conservative churches; all of the congregations which are indicated as having “no regular pastor” are conservative.

Of the thirty-four congregations, Eastland, Seventeenth Street, Vine Street, Woodland Street, Lea Avenue and Second Christian Churches are clearly among the Disciples.  Only Warioto Settlement (perhaps a mission?) and Westwood (perhaps a forerunner of Clay Street Christian Church?) are unknown to the extent that I do not know how to classify them…either as conservative or progressive.  In 1912 three-fourths of the Stone-Campbell congregations in the city limits of Nashville, 28 of 34, are clearly among Churches of Christ: they are all acapella and provide neither financial nor moral support for missionary societies.  However, just four congregations are listed as Churches of Christ: Carroll Street, Cherokee Park, Highland and Jackson Street Churches of Christ.  None of these four would have been considered ‘progressives’ as generally understood within Restoration Movement circles in 1912.  In fact, Jackson Street began as a conservative reaction to Rev. Preston Taylor and the Gay Street and Lea Avenue Christian Churches.

It appears, then, that unless otherwise noted the names of thirty congregations are XYZ Christian Church.  The City Directory appears to follow this policy in the listings of congregations of other denominations: unless a particular congregation’s name differs from the parent group, it is to be understood as bearing the name of the parent group.  For example, Jo Johnston Avenue Church may be understood as having as their full name Jo Johnston Avenue Christian Church (in fact, so reads the deed to the property; Jo Johnston was formerly known as Line street Christian Church, also on the deed).

That said, I have in my files a copy of a photograph of Twelfth Avenue, North, congregation’s meetinghouse.  It has as its name on the sign by the front entrance: Twelfth Avenue Church of Christ.  The photograph appears to date from ca. 1910.  Clearly datable photographs of the church buildings or other documentary evidence will afford the best way to chronicle the changing nomenclature, and thereby the separation, on the ground, of the Stone-Campbell congregations in Nashville.  Until such evidence comes to light, our conclusions about how and when the full implications and results of the division played itself out on the ground among the various congregations must remain tentative.

S. H. Hall remembers David Lipscomb

S. H. Hall remembers David Lipscomb

Samuel Henry Hall was born in Smyrna, TN 23 December 1877.  Baptized by F. W. Smith in a meeting at Rock Spring Church of Christ in 1892, he began preaching a few years later in 1896.  By the time he entered Nashville Bible School in 1902 he had been preaching about six years, had taught school, was married and had a young son.  While a student at NBS he roomed with H. Leo Boles.  When these memoirs were published, first in 1955 under the title Sixty Years in the Pulpit (privately printed by John Allen Hudson of Old Paths Book Club), Hall had lived in Los Angeles for five years.  Hall preached often in revivals and gospel meetings throughout his career, and earlier at Sichel Street Church of Christ, Los Angeles, from 1920-1922.  His brief stay in California came between two long ministries, first at West End Church of Christ in Atlanta from 1906-1920 and at Russell Street Church of Christ in Nashville from 1922-1950.  During his ministries in Atlanta and Nashville, both churches grew to considerable size.  West End Church in Atlanta grew to about 350 members (large for a Church of Christ in Georgia at that time) and Russell Street in Nashville, with over 1000 members, was among the largest congregations of any group in Nashville.  He served on the Board of Directors at David Lipscomb College prior to his move west in 1950.  Additional information is available at here.

—–

Excerpted from chapter 3 of S. H. Hall, Sixty-Five Years in the Pulpit, Or, Compound Interest in Religion. Nashville: Gospel Advocate Company, 1959. Pages 13-14. 

DAVID LIPSCOMB, whom I first came really to know after entering the Nashville Bible School.  When I entered that school[1] I had deep-seated prejudice against him because of the influence of the “A. McGary and Lipscomb controversy” over what was called “rebaptism” and “shaking them in,” the latter being the expression used by McGary against Lipscomb and the former the word used in speaking of those who stood with McGary.  My father was a regular reader of the Firm Foundation and took a radical stand for McGary’s side of the question, and it was through his influence that prejudice against Lipscomb found a strong place in my heart.  I took a class under Brother Lipscomb, primarily to give him all the trouble I could when such questions came up.

            But, let me state that this is where I got what I sometimes call “my second conversion.”  I found Lipscomb so everlastingly fair in all that he said about other religious bodies and those of our brethren who differed with him that it revealed something within me that was all wrong and led me to see how utterly wrong I was in taking a position and holding to it with bull-dog tenacity instead of studying the question with the sole desire to get the truth, even when it condemned me.  It was the influence of Lipscomb that planted, never to be rooted up, the following scriptures – Micah 6:8, “He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to lover mercy (kindness), and to walk humbly with thy God?”  Jeremiah 5:1, “Run ye to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now, and know, and seek in the broad places thereof, if ye can find a man, if there be any that executeth judgment, that seeketh the truth; and I will pardon it.”  To be absolutely just in representing others, never falsely accusing them, and to be as fair in stating their positions as you are in stating your own, was the lesson I got from Lipscomb—and it saved me.  For had I continued with the unfair and prejudiced way I had been handling questions with those whom I differed, I would have been lost—no doubt about this.  The awful danger of our “receiving not the love of the truth, that we might be saved” about which we are warned in 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 had never dawned upon my heart.  Lipscomb planted that warning, and he lived what he tried to get over to his students.  He is the only editor—there may be one or two exceptions—who, occasionally, in his writing would take up some statement that he had formerly made and state, “I am sure I was mistaken in the position I took on this scripture and want to now correct it.”  He looked for his own mistakes as well as the mistakes of others.  Hw often did I hear him in the class, when some young preacher would start off on a tirade /14/ against the Baptist or Methodist on some position, gently say, “You are mistaken there—here is their position,[2] and he would give it exactly as their best scholars taught it.  All liars shall have their part in the lake of fire and brimstone, so the Book declares.  So far as I know, it is just as bad to lie about others by accusing them of believing something they do not believe as it is to lie in a horse swap.  If not, why not?


[1] 1902; he was twenty-four years old, married with a two-year old son, and had been preaching 6 years.

[2] Hall does not close his quotation.  It may end here or at the end of the paragraph.

Name Authority for Nashville, Tennessee Stone-Campbell Congregations

Name Authority for Nashville Tennessee Stone-Campbell Congregations

Click above to download a document listing 286 variants of time-, place- and character-names for the 228 known congregations of the Stone-Campbell movement in Nashville and Davidson County, Tennessee from 1820 to May 2010.

To my knowledge this is the first such compilation, and therefore, the most complete.  The publication of the list to this blog is a first step in my research toward a book on the Restoration Movement in Nashville.  With over 200 congregations in this county, the congregational research alone will take years, perhaps the remainder of my life.  If I live to be 100 I may not finish even a rudimentary survey.  It may be too much:  too many congregations, too many preachers, too much ‘story’ to tell. 

But this is where I am at the present.  I publish the list here to generate interest, additions, subtractions, corrections and clarifications.  Look it over and if I need to make changes, please let me know.

The story of these churches in Nashville needs to be told.  I ask for your help in telling it.

Nashville Churches of Christ History Group on Facebook

Nashville Churches of Christ History group is open to anyone interested in the Stone-Campbell movement in Nashville and Davidson County.  Here is the first post I made a few days ago:

I envision this community as a place to share common interest in the rich story of the Stone-Campbell Movement in Nashville. I am conducting research for a book which will highlight each congregation of Churches of Christ and Christian Churches from the 1820’s to the present…basically the entire movement from its beginning in our city until now. I envision this group as a place to share memories, photos, news and generate discussion and interest. Please join and contribute. Please feel free to contact me directly at icekm (at) aol (dot) com.

The group is open to all.  Help spread the word and generate interest.

David Lipscomb on Acts reviewed in Christian Standard, 1897

I notice today is the 27th, and, so, a happy 27th to all.  But I come empty-handed as far as a new installment for Explorations in Stone-Campbell Bibliography is concerned.  As a substitute I offer this review of David Lipscomb’s Commentary on Acts.

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BOOK TABLE

“A Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles, with Questions, Suited for the Use of Families and Schools.”  By D. Lipscomb.  Nashville, Tenn.: Gospel Advocate Publishing Company, 1896.

This is a volume of 249 pages, octavo, neatly printed and well bound.  The commentary proper is preceded by “Biographies of the Apostles,” among whom Barnabas is accorded a place.  An Introduction sets forth briefly the work of the Holy Spirit, and the general purpose of the Book of Acts.  In the body of the  work the text of both the A. V. and the R. V. is printed in parallel columns at the top of the page–a waste of space as respects the former.  The commentary is in no sense a critical one.  The author has not subjected his own literary style to criticism, but writes with the same improprieties of diction and awkward construction of sentences which characterizes his newspaper articles.  This is a defect which should have been avoided in a commentary.

The comments in the main are judicious, and will meet the general approval of scholars.  The study of it in families, in schools, or in any other way, must prove decidedly beneficial to all who are beginners in the study of the New Testament.  It is to be regretted, however, that it contains many slips in matters of detail which might easily have been avoided with more care.  For example, it is said “The two letters to the Corinthians were written during his second tour from Ephesus;” the name Theophilus is said to be a Latin word (p. 25); on Thursday they had seen him arrested, tried, buffeted; and on Friday they saw him in open day nailed to the cross [; sic] the catching away of Philip after the baptism of the eunuch was “Back to Azotus” (p. 95); “Cyprus was on the road from Jerusalem to Tarsus” (p. 113); “The ‘world’ frequently means the land of Judea” (p. 114); “The first and second ward mean the first and second gates” (p. 116); “It is certain that Silas and Titus did this for Paul at Corinth, since he baptized only the first fruits of his preaching there’ (p. 121); James is called, just as the school of Baur would have him, “the head of the Judaizing party,” and in the conference on circumcision it is said, “The apostles and elders at first disagreed” (p. 142); Paul and his company are said to have made the trip from Troas to Macedonia in one day (p. 147); of Paul’s journey from Athens to Corinth, a distance of forty-five miles, it is said: “He probably went by water” (p. 163).  But enough of these.  All such mistakes should be corrected in a second edition.

Christian Standard, January 23, 1897, p. 121.

—–

The Book Table for this issue of the Standard contains reviews of two books: DL on Acts, and the “Practical Commentary: S. S. Lessons, 1897” published by Fleming H. Revell.  J. W. McGarvey, Lexington, Ky. is the author of the second, and I assume also of the first.  It is natural that JWM reviews a commentary on Acts, given that the second edition of his commentary on Acts was published in 1892.  From this review it appears that Little Mac and Uncle Dave stand in basic agreement on Acts.  JWM raises no serious objection (the reference to Baur is as bad as it gets, but I doubt that JWM could find much more agreement between FC Baur and David Lipscomb) and his criticism is limited to matters of style and negligence in detail.  One would want McGarvey to proof-read a mss.!  For McGarvey, that Lipscomb’s work is “in no sense a critical one” may well be compliment, not a criticism.  I thought this review is a nice complement to the recent posts of “memories” of McGarvey.  Your comments welcome.