Bowen's Chapel

Cumberland Presbyterian Church

Waverly, (Plant Community) Humphreys County, Tennessee

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In 1879, Uriah and Margaret Jackson gave a tract of land in the Plant community to the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. A church was built on this land and adjoining Pisgah Methodist Church. Elders were W. B. Richardson, M. V. Waggoner, Jas. V. Byrn, Plant, Corbitt, Goodrich W. C. Cooley, E. C. McCauley and others.

Mr. and Mrs. B. S. Bowen of the Plant community made a will naming Bowen's Chapel benefactor of 105 acres of prime farm land in Big Bottom.

A shortage of ministers, after the attempted union of the two Presbyterian Churches, made the number of churches in a group even larger. Each Presbytery assigned the churches and also encouraged the building of homes for ministers.

In 1913, the Session of Bowen's Chapel purchased 30 acres of land for this purpose.

Presbytery minutes reveal attendance in 1907 of 27 members; in 1912 of 24 members and in 1920, 16 resident members. Bowen's Chapel was grouped with Pleasant Hill, Waverly, McEwen and Dickson churches. In 1912, H. L. Potter was group minister. Other pastors were F. T. Arteburn, A. T. Byrn and A. H. Sykes.

Clarksville Presbytery met with the Bowen's Chapel Church in 1902 and 1913.

In 1942, the United States Government (TVA) paid the Bowen's Chapel Church $27,585.00 for the Bowen farm. The Bowen prime farm land is now covered with the waters of Kentucky Lake.

The Session of the church, reinvested this money in a farm in Montgomery County, Tennessee. This farm was sold later on for $125,000, which is being used at the Memphis Theological Seminary to train Cumberland Presbyterian ministers.

The Waverly Church built Bowen's Chapel Fellowship Hall with the proceeds from the sale of the manse and church. This was a gift of $14,200.00. The furniture from the Bowen's Chapel church was refurbished by the Waverly CPW and is being used in the Hall.

In 1967, at the time of the disbanding of the church, the elders were Carl Powers, Francis Powers and Catherine Bumpus. Rev. M. C. Powers pastored the Bowen's Chapel Cumberland Presbyterian Church from 1926 to 1968.

[Written by Catherine Brown Carter]

Bowen's Chapel was erected in the year 1879 in the Plant community and carried the name of the man who furnished the land and erected the building.

Mr. Bowen was a well to do farmer. He had a nice Duck River farm and he willed at his death the income of his farm go to the church. The will also stated if Bowen's Chapel ceased to be a church then the estate would go to the Cumberland University Theological School. It now has ceased to be a church.

J. M. C. Young was the first Elder.

We have been unable to locate church records but it has been said that the last two people who at one time attended services here were Mrs. Nancy Plant, and Mrs. Clatie Raney, who at this time are both deceased.

[Written by Guy Warren for the Humphreys County Heritage Book, 1979]

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Updated February 17, 2005