Bushrod Johnson Reagin

Cumberland Presbyterian Minister

1873 - 1942

Rev. Bushrod Johnson Reagin

Rev. Bushrod Johnson Reagin was born in Giles County, Tennessee, October 25, 1873, and died at McKenzie, Tennessee, December 4, 1942. He was the son of Thomas Caleb and Emma Smith Reagin. On July 18, 1897, he was married to Frances Madora Kerr. To this union were born five children, three of whom survive: Mrs. J. A. Parnell of Knoxville, Tennessee; Rev. Ewell K. Reagin of McKenzie, Tennessee; and Mrs. Louis McEuen of Gibson, Tennessee. Besides his wife he is also survived by the following sisters and brothers: Mrs. Agnes Hunter, Athens, Alabama; Mrs. J. W. Fudge, Decatur, Alabama; Mrs. Emma Kerr, Kansas City, Kansas; Mrs. Hattie Brownlow, Prospect, Tennessee; Tom S. Reagin, Nashville, Tennessee; John Reagin, Miami, Florida; and Andrew Reagin, Independence, Missouri. One brother and one sister preceded him in death. Seven grandchildren also mourn his departure.

He joined Richland Presbytery at the spring meeting in 1896, and was ordained at Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, in 1904. He as educated at Bryson Institute and the Cumberland Presbyterian school at Pulaski, Tennessee, known as the Pulaski Institute. After beginning his work as a school teacher and preacher, he served pastorates at Centerville, Hohenwald, Lawrenceburg, Nashville, Dayton, Loudon, McKenzie, Bolivar, Toone, Kenton, North Union, Cool Springs, and Mount Pleasant (Greeneville), Tennessee. He also served the churches at Marshall, Texas, and Springfield, Missouri. In 1925 he served as agent for the Educational Endowment Commission.

During his ministry he was active in all of the enterprises of the denomination and always believed in supporting the program of the Church. He served for a number of years on the Board of Education, and for a time as its president. He also served on the Board of Missions and Church Erection and the Board of Tithing and Budget. He felt that attendance at Church courts was an obligation and a privilege. He boasted of the fact that he had a record of attending more Assemblies than any of his brethren, having been present as a commissioner or a visitor at 32 of the 36 Assemblies following the Union. Twice he was nominated as moderator and once was defeated by one vote.

His last ministry was one of his happiest. Although he had but about three months of active service at the Mount Pleasant church near Greeneville, Tennessee, he felt that it was of great value to him and to the community. After he had spent several weeks in the hospital and in bed, he was able to return to the church for a few services and make brief talks while sitting in the pulpit. On the third Sunday in August, 1942, he made a talk of about fifteen minutes and when he extended the invitation for church membership twelve people joined the church by profession of faith. On the next day he was forced to go to bed again and was never able to take an active part in the services.

The funeral service was conducted at the McKenzie Cumberland Presbyterian Church, with Rev. D. W. Perry presiding and leading the prayer at the church and also at the grave. Rev. Morris Pepper read the Scripture, Rev. W. T. Ingram, Jr., read the Scripture at the grave, and Rev. W. B. Cunningham made the talk, Elders of the local church were the active pallbearers. The ministerial students of Bethel College were honorary pallbearers and united in the Lord's Prayer at the conclusion of the prayer by Brother Perry. The music was furnished by Bethel College students under the direction of Miss Rebecca Porter and Miss Clara Dishman.
[Source: The Cumberland Presbyterian, December 10, 1942, page 22]

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Updated December 18, 2007