THE parents of Mr. Davis, David and Mary Suter Davis, were married in Abbeville District, South Carolina, June 8, 1770 [Sic: June 8, 1870]. His mother was born and raised in Pennsylvania, but both her parents were members of the Presbyterian Church. From South Carolina they moved to Greene county, Georgia, where they remained till they had seven children, when they moved to South-western Kentucky, and settled in Livingston county. Here the subject of this sketch was born, May 28, 1808. The parents had ten children, of whom Silas was the ninth. He was baptized by the Rev. Mr. Dickey, pastor of the congregation to which his parents belonged, and it is said that his mother, on the occasion of his baptism, dedicated him to God for the ministry in the Presbyterian Church. We admire the devotion of such mothers to the interests of the Church and the kingdom of Christ, and the kingdom of Christ, and wish we had more of them now. Being dedicated to the Church, he was called Silas, from the name of Paul's companion. His second name was, of course, derived from that of England's great natural philosopher.
In 1825, the family moved still farther south-west, into what was then called, in the language of the times, Jackson's Purchase. They were still, however, in Kentucky. The same year the Anderson Presbytery sent Revs. B. H. Pierson (the present Rev. Dr. Pierson, of Arkansas), and Adley Boyd, as missionaries for twelve months into that section of country. The Presbyterians in that portion of Kentucky were sheep without a shepherd, and David Davis and his family received the young missionaries with cordiality, and connected themselves with the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and he was made a Ruling Elder in a congregation which was soon organized in his neighborhood. His house became a home for the preachers, when the writer knows, from a sufficient experience, that good homes were not very numerous in that country. A considerable revival soon developed itself under the labors of the missionaries, and among the converts was Silas N. Davis. According to my information, he professed religion in his sixteenth year. There is some difficulty in reconciling other dates to that age; but I suppose it may be safely stated that in his sixteenth or seventeenth year he took that important step. He was, at least, very young. He made profession at Mobley's Camp-ground, in Hickman county.
In 1827, November 14, he was received as a candidate for the ministry by the Anderson Presbytery. The sessions of the Presbytery were held that fall at Elkton, Kentucky. Late in the same fall, or early in the winter, he entered a school which was conducted by the writer at McLemoresville, Tennessee. He was connected there with William A. Bryan, John McKee, and James McKee, who were considerably older, but were preparing for the ministry at the same time. My impression is that Bryan and James McKee were preparing for ordination. It was a very interesting school--something like a theological school in embryo. It was sometimes jocularly called a college, but it had no pretensions of that sort.
Mr. Davis was licensed as a probationer for the ministry September 11, 1828. In the spring of 1829, he was appointed to ride and preach in what was called the Livingston District. The time of his ordination cannot be exactly determined, as some of the Presbyterial records are lost or mislaid, and among them those which relate to this subject. The probability is that he was ordained in the fall of 1830, as he spent the summer of that year at Cumberland College, it seems most likely, preparing for ordination.
He spent the early years of his ministry, from 1828 to 1834, almost entirely in the itinerant work. A good deal of the time he was very closely connected in his labors with Rev. Hugh B. Hill, somewhat the senior of Mr. Davis, a minister of great worth and usefulness, and a fine model for a younger man. The field of their labors extended through Jackson's Purchase, and Christian, Todd, and Logan counties, and some of the adjoining portions of Tennessee.
Mr. Davis was married October 9, 1834, to Miss Elizabeth A. McLean, youngest child of George Brevard and Pamelia Davidson McLean, of Todd county, Kentucky. Mrs. McLean was a descendant of General Davidson, of North Carolina, who fell in one of the conflicts of the Revolution. Mr. Davis himself was, in the line of his father, of Welsh descent, and the original name was Davies. The proper orthography is generally given in the name of Colonel Joseph H. Davies, who fell at the battle of Tippecanoe, and who was a distant relative of our subject.
Mr. Davis was what is called a doctrinal preacher. He studied very carefully, and understood well, the system of doctrines taught by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. My informant says, that "he was often called upon by persons of other denominations to explain the theology of his Church in a public manner, and that the results were, frequent changes of views to those which he presented, and sometimes changes of Church relations." He certainly had a very intelligent apprehension, as I have mentioned already, of the doctrines of the Church. The baptismal controversy has absorbed to a great extent the religious mind of the country in which he operated for many years. He investigated that subject very thoroughly. All Pedobaptist ministers throughout the South-west have been compelled to the same course, in order to maintain any degree of self-respect, and to keeping their congregations together. Mr. Davis understood that subject, and expounded it very effectively. He never became, however, a regular theological pugilist. He kept a sort of ministerial diary, in which he was accustomed to record all marriages which he solemnized, funeral-services rendered, and sermons delivered upon particular subjects and occasions. He delighted in the work of the ministry. His secular affairs were never allowed to interfere with the demands of duties which he considered to be of immeasurably higher importance. His worldly interests sometimes suffered; still he seemed never to allow himself to think of losses from such a cause. His heart and soul were devoted to higher interests.
After his marriage, Mr. Davis spent the most of his time for a number of years in Todd county. By this is meant that Todd county was the home of his family. He himself traveled a great deal in attending meetings in the adjoining counties. For some years, too, he had the pastoral charge of the Elkton Congregation. He also lived some time in Henderson county.
In 1850, he removed from Todd county, and settled at Cumberland College. His object in this change was the education of his children with greater convenience and less expense. Of course his membership was transferred from the Anderson to the Princeton Presbytery. Here he continued, spending his time in his customary manner, till his death. He preached often and extensively in the congregations around, always with acceptance and usefulness. Here he died, on the 26th day of September, 1854. His death was no doubt hastened, if not caused, by excessive ministerial labors during an unusually hot summer. A relation by marriage, and a fellow-presbyter and near neighbor, Rev. George D. McLean, had fallen in his work a short time before. Another member of the Presbytery, a beloved young man, Rev. J. J. Wilson, had also died in the course of the summer. Mr. Wilson was a student of Cumberland College, but was growing rapidly into usefulness and importance. These successive blows fell very heavily upon Mr. Davis. He felt that additional responsibility was accumulating upon himself in sustaining the interests of the Church in the community around him. There is no doubt that he fell a victim to an oppressive sense of this increasing responsibility. It impelled him to efforts which his physical system was not able to bear. It is mournful to see men who are willing to labor--to spend and be spent for Christ and his cause, men who are so much needed--cut down in the midst of their years and their usefulness. Still it is often the way of a mysterious Providence. He works behind a cloud. We cannot understand what he does, yet we are assured that "righteousness and Judgment are the habitation of his throne." He may call off the shepherd, but he still cares for the flock. Mr Davis died in his forty-seventh year, in the prime of his life, and in the full strength of his manhood. He left a widow and four children, a son and three daughters. Two of his daughters are the wives of beloved young ministers in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, Rev. James L. Payne, of Tennessee, and Rev. John W. Campbell, of Arkansas. The husband of the other daughter, Mrs. Coffman, is an efficient member of the Church. To Mrs. Coffman herself I am mainly indebted for the materials of this sketch. The son died in 1868. The widow still lives. Mr. Davis was greatly respected and beloved by his family. His influence over them was almost unbounded. He sowed good seed there, too, which developed itself into an early maturity.
There is an incident connected with the life of Mr. Davis too remarkable to be overlooked in such a sketch as this. The authority for it is unquestionable. He had an older brother who professed religion before Silas made a profession. This brother felt it to be his duty to preach the gospel, but shrunk from what seemed to him to be the call made upon him. The younger brother in process of time made a profession, joined the Church, and soon began to turn his attention to the ministry. It is said that the older brother had made it a matter of prayer that Silas might be called to preach, and himself excused. He regarded the apparent call of his brother, when it developed itself, as an answer to his prayers, and turned his attention wholly to other pursuits. Matters stood thus until the death of the subject of this sketch, a space of twenty-six years. When the younger brother was called to his reward, the older felt that the old woe was renewed against him if he failed to preach the gospel. He immediately yielded to what he considered a call of duty, and at the age of fifty-six gave himself up to the work of the ministry. Says my informant:
"Notwithstanding his age, he advanced far enough to be licensed. I heard him preach several times, and was greatly surprised that he succeeded so well, commencing as he did so late in life. I could almost imagine sometimes that I was hearing my own dear, sainted father."
I append here a communication to the Watchman and Evangelist, at that time published in Louisville, by Rev. Milton Bird. The communication was written by Rev. A. Freeman, now Rev. Dr. Freeman, of Greenville, Kentucky:
"CUMBERLAND COLLEGE, PRINCETON, KENTUCKY,
"September 30, 1854.
"BROTHER BIRD--My Dear Sir:--The death of our dear Brother McLean has already been announced, and now, after three short months, we are called upon to make a similar report in relation to Rev. Silas N. Davis. And as it was said of the former, it may as truly be said of the latter, 'he died in the midst of his years and of his usefulness, at his post and with his armor on.' Brother Davis was a good man, an efficient preacher, and a wise counselor. In Presbytery or Synod, he was sure to be present, unless prevented by circumstances strictly providential. Indeed, he always looked forward with interest to such meetings, and made his arrangements to attend them, and his advice in all ecclesiastical measures were earnestly sought, and almost universally followed. As a speaker he was argumentative and vehement, abounding in forcible appeals to the judgment and the conscience. He was a vigorous defender of the doctrines of the gospel as set forth in the Cumberland Presbyterian Confession of Faith.
"Often, indeed generally, he preached to weak congregations, which were in a great measure destitute of the means of grace, and which would otherwise have perished for the lack of knowledge, discipline, and the comforts of the gospel. He went into the highways and hedges, where there was no earthly prospect of remuneration, and compelled the poor and neglected to come to the gospel-feast. He looked for a reward which was not long delayed. He preached his last sermon to a feeble congregation in Canton, some thirty miles from his home, whither he had gone according to a monthly engagement to break to them the bread of life. He came home sick, and, after two weeks of suffering, he went to another, an everlasting home, where those who have turned many to righteousness shall shine as the stars forever and ever. It was good to see him calmly and triumphantly meet the last enemy. To the writer, who had the mournful pleasure of waiting around his dying bed, and cooling his fevered brow, he said: 'Brother, all these plans will fail, but, blessed be God! the Christian has plans that cannot fail. This is my joy. This is my consolation.' The preceding is a sample of many similar expressions used by him when aroused from the stupor induced by the typhoid fever.
"The funeral-sermon of Brother Davis was preached by Rev. W. C. McGeehee, and was one of the most appropriate I ever heard. The remains were borne to their last resting place by the Masonic Fraternity, and buried with the impressive ceremonies of the Order. 'Earth to earth; ashes to ashes; dust to dust; looking for a general resurrection in the last day, when the earth and the sea shall give up their dead.' 'Let me die the death of the righteous; let my last end be like his.'
"Brother Davis has left a wife and four children, who feel deeply the bitterness and desolation of widowhood and orphanage. Though they sorrow not as those who have no hope, they need the prayers and sympathies of the Church.
"But what is to become of the Princeton
Presbytery, bereft in so short a time of its most valued
and most useful ministers? Since the last regular meeting of the
Presbytery, J. J. Wilson, George
D. McLean, and Silas N. Davis, have rested from their
labors. The Lord send us help! The Lord send us faithful laborers
to take the places of those who have gone to their reward on high!
I append to this sketch two letters written at the request of the family of Mr. Davis, from Rev. Dr. B. H. Pierson, of Arkansas, and Rev. W. G. L. Quaite, of Texas. Dr. Pierson was regarded by Mr. Davis as his spiritual father, and Mr. Quaite was long a fellow-laborer and particular friend. They both knew him well, and no testimony could be more trustworthy than theirs.
The following is the letter from Mr. Quaite, of Texas:
"SISTER DAVIS:--It affords me great pleasure to bear my testimony to the worth of such a man as Brother Davis. The lives and labors of men like him are a rich legacy to the Church, and should be preserved. I could write pages in illustration of his character. I knew him long, and loved him much. But others will bear similar testimony, and I will be brief.
"The first time I ever saw Brother Davis, he was in attendance
upon the sessions of Anderson
Presbytery. The meeting was held in Hopkinsville, in the
native State of both of us. He was a young man then, and I was
a boy not yet out of my teens. I heard him preach an excellent
sermon, as I thought. I know it was so regarded by the people
generally. The impression prevailed that he was a young man of
unusual promise. Two or three years afterward, he and Rev.
Thomas Bone came to my father's house. I was not then
a member of the Church, but I formed an attachment for him that
continued and increased through life. He was at the camp-meeting
at which I professed religion, and preached every day with an
earnestness and power which carried conviction to many a poor
sinner's heart. On Monday evening we retired into the grove together.
He talked with me and prayed for me with a tenderness which will
never be forgotten. Two hours afterward light, life, and joy indescribable,
sprung up in my heart. He was present when I became a candidate
for the ministry. At my ordination, he preached the ordination-sermon.
He treated the young preachers with so much tenderness that they
could but love him. I have labored with him a great deal. The
first year of my ministry I rode what was then called the Henderson
Circuit. He then lived in Henderson county. In the course of the
summer of 1839, we attended a number of meetings together, at
every one of which there was a large ingathering. His religion
was of a scriptural character. His sermons were always well arranged,
and well delivered. And, whilst he was no bigoted sectarian, he
loved his Church, and was always ready to defend its doctrines,
and he could do it with great ability. He was neither ashamed
of the gospel, nor a reproach to it; always in his place in the
judicatures of the Church; taking a deep interest in all the business
of the body. In all his intercourse with his brethren he was kind,
courteous, respectful, and showed a Christian spirit, and many
will rise up in the great day of God Almighty and call him blessed.
"W. G. L. QUAITE."
The following letter is from Rev. Dr. B. H. Pierson, of Arkansas:
"MY DEAR SISTER DAVIS:--Your letter requesting from me something on the subject of the early history of your worthy departed husband, the Rev. Silas N. Davis, was duly received, and I take pleasure in complying with your request, especially as you intimate that I was more familiar with his character and first labors in the ministry than any other person.
"In the spring of A.D. 1826, I was ordered by the Anderson Presbytery of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church to travel and preach in what was then called 'the Kentucky portion of Jackson's Purchase,' included in the then recently organized counties of McCracken, Graves, Hickman, and Obion, a field of labor that had been preoccupied by Rev. R. Beard, the present Rev. Dr. Beard, of Lebanon, Tennessee, and John B. McKinney, but which had been abandoned by the Hopewell Presbytery for some time, as included in a Presbytery to which these young men did not belong.
"In connection with my much-loved brother, Rev. Adley Boyd, I entered this field, in which there was not a Cumberland Presbyterian minister, or, so far as I remember, an organized congregation. Notwithstanding our great lack of literary and other qualifications for the work, our labors were so blessed that in the brief space of five months the converts numbered more than one hundred. Among them was Silas N. Davis, at that time, I think, about seventeen years old. He had had the advantage of religious training by parents who had belonged to the Presbyterian Church, but who joined the Cumberland Presbyterians with their son Silas.
"At the fall session of the Presbytery, Brother Boyd and I were remanded to the same work for the following six months. Soon after I returned to it I was informed by his parents that Silas was impressed to preach. But his age, his almost entire want of education, the entire destitution of schools in that but recently settled region, and the fact that his parents were poor, and consequently unable to send him abroad to be educated, all seemed to present insuperable barriers in the way of his entering the ministry. We were unable, at once, to determine as to the best course to pursue. I proposed to take him with me on the circuit, and teach him, as I might have opportunity, English Grammar and other things that I deemed important, and that, on becoming a candidate for the ministry, I knew the Presbytery would require him to know.
"Although the circumstances that attended him in his early youth were very unfavorable to his mental development, I soon learned that he possessed a mind of no ordinary character. His memory, especially, was above ordinary. I will give an illustration: One evening we were going to a night appointment in a neighborhood where a beginner would have but little to fear from the size or intelligence of the congregation, and I proposed to him to exhort and pray. He replied that he knew nothing to say. I proposed to furnish the outlines of a religious talk, and did so by alluding to the parable of the 'Supper' as a suitable representation of the blessings of the gospel--their fullness, their freeness, their adaptation to the situation, circumstances, and wants of the human family--giving the points of a discourse, the clothing of which with such thoughts as I supposed they would suggest to his mind, and the delivery of which might require fifteen or twenty minutes, which was agreed to. The time came. The congregation were present. He lined a hymn; we sang it. He offered a prayer, every word of which seemed to be necessary and in its proper place. He arose from kneeling, commenced where I began, proceeded as I had done, expressing the same thoughts that I had expressed, and in the same order, so far as I could remember, and stopped where I did, without adding a single word or syllable, so far as I could recollect. Although the effort showed his great lack of information, it demonstrated his capacity of learning.
"In the following spring (1827), he went with me to Presbytery, and presented himself as a candidate for the ministry. But his awkward appearance, his illiterateness, and (shall I say) his homely costume, all conspired to make the Presbytery reject him, notwithstanding all my efforts to persuade the Presbytery that he had merit. All the encouragement he received was to write a piece on a subject of his own selecting, and be at the next meeting of the Presbytery, in the hope that he might then be received. And to show the liability of the wisest and best man to err in determining as to who should preach the gospel, as well as still farther to demonstrate that his native ability was extraordinary, I will say that three years from that time, at Bethlehem camp-meeting, within six miles of Cumberland College, at 11 o'clock on the Sabbath, and in the presence of Dr. Cossitt, Rev. D. Lowry, and others of like prominence in the Church, he delivered a sermon which was creditable to himself and to the occasion. About this time I became a pioneer in Arkansas, and it was my privilege after that to meet him but rarely; never, except my duties called me nearer to the heart of the Church to attend its highest judicature.
"In conclusion, it is but justice to the memory of Brother Davis that I should say he was always affable and pleasant. None that I ever assisted into the ministry gave me less anxiety or trouble.
"In Christian kindness your,
"B. H. PIERSON."
My own personal acquaintance with Mr. Davis extended over his whole ministerial life. Our intimacy, however, was confined chiefly to its last few years. As I have already mentioned, in the fall of 1827 he came to McLemoresville, for the purpose of entering a school which I was then teaching at that place. He had a youthful and country-like appearance. I had begun to learn a little then of what I have learned a great deal since, that such exteriors often conceal abilities and worth which only want time and means for development. He passed through the school in a quiet manner, attending to his duties and making the usual progress. As I have mentioned before, there were several young men in the school--two or three of them preparing for ordination. A weekly prayer-meeting was kept up, and it was customary for some one of the young men to conduct the meeting. After having been there a few weeks, he was appointed to take his part in that way. Although it seemed a necessary extension of courtesy and encouragement to make the appointment, all were afraid it would not work well, he being so young, and seeming so utterly destitute of experience. He did not hesitate, however, but took his place, opened the exercises with the customary hymn and prayer, and then, instead of carrying the prayer-meeting directly forward, quietly slipped into a text, and gave us a very respectable little sermon of about twenty minutes' length. It took every one by surprise, but satisfied us that time and experience, and the grace of God, would make him a preacher.
He spent some months, and then returned to Kentucky. In the spring of 1830, I met him at Cumberland College. He spent the summer there, but our courses of study were different, and of course we were not very intimately associated.
After my return from Mississippi, in 1843, and when the Green River Synod resolved to make an effort for the reestablishment of Cumberland College, he became deeply interested in that enterprise, and in 1850, as it has been said, bought a home and settled near to the institution. The property which he bought was a part of the old College farm. We lived in adjoining yards until the early part of 1854. He was one of the best preachers of any denomination within the bounds of his operations. His education was not of the highest order, but what he read and heard he used to great advantage. Dr. Pierson has given an illustration of his aptitude in the use of material with which he became furnished from whatever source. This aptitude, perhaps rather improved than otherwise, followed him through life. He never preached a sermon which did not embody a greater or less amount of substantial doctrinal truth. On one occasion, two or three years before his death, he preached in the progress of a revival in Princeton. It was at a night-service, and the house was crowded. An intelligent hearer remarked at the close of the sermon, with earnest significance, that it contained truth enough to lead every hearer in the congregation to the kingdom of God, if it were rightly improved.
The loss of Mr. Davis was a heavy blow upon that portion of the Church with which he was more immediately connected. He was highly regarded both as a preacher and a counselor. As a tribute of respect to his memory, the Presbytery by which he was both licensed and ordained having been divided not long after his death, the new Presbytery received and still bears the name of the Davis Presbytery.
At the time of his death he was President of the Board of Trustees of Cumberland College. He was engaged with others in a vigorous effort to maintain and elevate the institution which had been a clustering point of so much care and labor. He was an earnest man, and in the most exalted work committed to human hands fulfilled an honored and useful mission. His memory is dear to many, and especially to his bereaved family, who loved and honored him almost to idolatry.
[Source: Beard, Richard. Brief Biographical Sketches of Some of the Early Ministers of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Second Series. Nashville, Tenn.: Cumberland Presbyterian Board of Publication, 1874, pages 321-338]
Rev. Silas N. Davis was born in Livingston County, Ky., May 28, 1808. His parents, pious Presbyterians, dedicated him to God for the ministry in that church; but when their son professed religion and joined the Cumberland Presbyterian Church they joined with him. Nov. 14, 1827, he was received by Anderson Presbytery as a candidate for the ministry. He attended school at McLemoresville, Tenn., taught by Dr. Richard Beard. He was licensed Sept. 11, 1828. He spent the year 1830 at Cumberland College, Princeton, Ky., and was ordained soon thereafter. His early ministry was spent in the itinerant work associated with Rev. Hugh B. Hill and Rev. Mathew Houston Bone. He was married in October, 1834, to Miss Eliza A. McLean, daughter of George B. and Pamelia Davidson McLean, of Todd County, Ky. Mr. Davis was pastor of Elkton Church for many years, also of the Hermon and Henderson Churches. In his ministry he worked a great deal with Rev. Joel Penick, whom he loved like a brother. In 1850 he moved to Princeton, Ky., where he died Sept. 26, 1854.
Dr. Richard Beard said of him, "Mr Davis's death was hastened if not caused by excessive ministerial labors during an unusually hot summer. A relation by marriage, Rev. George D. McLean and Rev. J. J. Wilson, members of the same presbytery, had died that summer. These successive blows fell heavy on Mr. Davis; he felt that additional responsibility was accumulating upon himself in sustaining the interest of the church. There is no doubt he fell a victim to an oppressive sense of this increasing responsibility. It is sorrowful to see men who are willing to labor and be spent for Christ and his cause, men who are so much needed, cut down in the midst of their years and usefulness. Still it is often the way of a mysterious providence. Mr. Davis died in his 47th year, in the prime of life and in the full strength of his manhood. He was one of our doctrinal preachers. The baptismal controversy had absorbed to a great extent the religious minds of the country in which he operated. He understood that subject thoroughly and expressed it effectively. He never became, however, a regular theological pugilist. His worldly interest often suffered; still he seemed never to allow himself to think of loss from such a cause. His heart and soul were devoted to higher interests. As a tribute of respect to his memory, the presbytery by which he was licensed, and ordained, having been divided not long after his death, the new presbytery secured and still bears his name, Davis. At the time of his death he was president of the Board of Trustees of Cumberland College. He was engaged with others in a vigorous effort to maintain and elevate the institution, which had been a clustering point of so much care and labor."
Dr. A. Freeman in a letter to the late Dr. A. J. Baird: "As it was said of Brother McLean so it is truly said of Brother Davis, 'He died in the midst of his years and his usefulness at his post and with his armor on.' He was a good man, an efficient presbyter, and a wise counselor. In presbytery and synod he was sure to be present. His advice on all ecclesiastical measures was earnestly sought, and almost invariably followed. He was a vigorous defender of the doctrines of the Cumberland Presbyterian Confession of Faith. He went into the highway and hedges, where there was no earthly prospect for remuneration,and compelled the poor and neglected to come to the gospel feast. He looked for a reward which was not long delayed.
"He came home from a thirty miles ride sick, 'After two weeks' suffering, he went to another, an everlasting home, where those who have turned many to righteousness shall shine as the stars forever and ever. It was good to see him calmly and triumphantly meet the last enemy. To the writer he said 'Brother! all these plans will fail, but, blessed be God, the Christian has plans that can never fail. This is my joy. This is my consolation. His remains were borne to the last resting place by the Masonic fraternity, and buried with the impressive ceremonies of that order."
Rev. W. G. L. Quaite says: "It affords me great pleasure to bear testimony to the worth of such a man as Brother Davis. The lives and labors of such men are a rich legacy to the church, and should be preserved. I could write pages in illustration of his character. I knew him long, and loved him much. He was at the camp meeting at which I professed religion, and preached every day with an earnestness and power which carried conviction to many a poor sinner's heart. The impression prevailed, that he was a young man of unusual promise; he talked with and prayed for me with a tenderness which will never be forgotten. When I became a candidate for the ministry he was present. When I was ordained he preached by ordination sermon. While he was no bigoted sectarian he loved his church and was ever ready to defend her doctrines and could do it with great ability. Many will arise up in the great day of God Almighty and call him blessed."
My father's grave is marked by a beautiful monument erected by his friends. My mother, brother, and one sister have passed over and joined that host and father in his celestial home and I say to my surviving sister, Mrs. James L. Payne, though we are wide apart now, it will not be long until we too, are called home, and can together clasp that father's hand again and with mother, sister and brother be a united family once more. God Almighty grant it. For all the foregoing we are indebted to Brother Davis' daughter, Mrs. C. K. Campbell.
[Source: The Cumberland Presbyterian, May 6, 1897, page 1424]