Sunday, October 17, 2010

Looking for George Williams

I've been trying to find out what I could about George Williams who is my fourth great-grandfather. Recently, I received an email from Lynn who knows a lot about the churches of Bertie Co., NC and she had some more pieces for the puzzle.

What I did know was that, according to "A History of Zion Church" by Bernie W. Cobb, in mid-November, 1833 a new church called Zion Baptist Church convened in Haywood Co., TN and elected a pastor. "Brother Leggit moved that an offer be extended to George Williams and Brother Rooks seconded the motion. Brother Outlaw was instructed to write him letting him know he had been chosen as the first pastor and requesting that he join them for the next meeting."

Lynn was able to provide a little more information for me about where George came from.

She let me know that George Williams was first mentioned in the minutes of the Holly Grove Baptist Church in Bertie Co., NC on December 13, 1828 as “Brother” George Williams.

Holly Grove Baptist Church was originally organized as Outlaw's Chapel in 1804 with 99 members. It was apparently in 1825 that Outlaw's Chapel officially became Holly Grove Baptist Church.

In the January 1829 minutes, George Williams was referred to as an Elder. He was unanimously chosen to pastor the church for one year on March 9, 1833. On March 28, 1833, he accepted the call of the church to serve them as pastor for one year provided that the church would change their meeting times from the second to the first Sunday in each month.

In the April 12, 1834 Minutes, $24 for his services during the previous year was mentioned. On May 3 of the same year, he agreed to serve "as long as convenient." In May 1835, he and Henry White agreed to serve the church together. In March 1836, the church wanted Mr. Williams and Mr. White to serve again. Henry White served. Nothing further was mentioned in the minutes of Holly Grove Baptist Church about George Williams.

Hopefully, this will help me find more out about George and who his parents were.

I do know that Williams was the pastor at Zion for a few years but the 1850 Census shows George living in Madison County, TN Dist 11 which is Jackson, TN. He was 53 and his wife Nancy was 40. They had a daughter, Harriet A. who was 17 and born in 1833 in Tennessee. George’s occupation was listed as a Baptist Minister.

You can read more about the Williams Family here.

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