Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Sacred Harp Markers, Almost: McMahan

The historical marker for Bethel Primitive Baptist Church at McMahan, Caldwell County, Texas does not mention Sacred Harp, but the church has long been associated with the book and music. The Spring Session of the Southwest Texas Sacred Harp Convention has met here annually since 1962, and randomly beginning as early as 1934 (most earlier records are missing). The church and marker (Marker Number 9758) are located on FM 813, about 1/2 mile west of the intersection of FM 813 and FM 86. The Jeffrey Cemetery is adjacent to the church building. This marker was apparently erected in 1986 during the Texas Sesquicentennial (150th anniversary).

Marker Text:
Bethel Primitive Baptist Church
This congregation was organized June 19, 1852, in the home of John Fleming near this site. Elders George Daniels and Reuben W. Ellis from the Plum Creek Primitive Baptist Church were called to serve as pastors by the charter members: James Jeffrey, Mary Ann Jeffrey, John M. Fleming, Abigail Fleming, Richard Cole, Sarah Cole, John B. Jeffrey, Elinder Jeffrey, Robert McFeron, and Sarah McFeron. A church building was erected at this site in 1901. Bethel Primitive Baptist Church continues to minister to McMahan and the surrounding area as it has since 1852.
Texas Sesquicentennial 1836 – 1986

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