Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Alabama State Convention

Mount Pleasant Home Primitive Baptist Church,
Birmingham, Alabama

November 25-26, 2000

Saturday, November 25

The one hundred-first session of the Alabama State Sacred Harp Convention met at Mount Pleasant Home Primitive Baptist Church on the fourth Sunday and Saturday before in November. Henry Johnson called the class to order at 9:00 a.m. leading song on page 59. Elder Edwin Farris offered the morning prayer.

Henry Johnson extended a warm welcome to everyone, read quotes from B.F. White, and led song on page 390.

Leaders: Glenn Keeton 225t; Linda Thomas 33b; Elene Stovall 99; Harrison Creel 348b; Max Berueffy 37b; Jackie Tanner and Cindy Tanner 217; Becky Browne 142; Don Bowen and Rodney Ivey 475; Willie Mae Moon 470; Bud Oliver 39b; Charlene Wallace 147t; Ted Mercer 564; Michele Cull 496; Felton Denney 489; Jo Dell Albi 28t; Reba Dell Windom 224; Lomax Ballinger 460; Liz Bryant and Bill Stewart 384; Jerry Enright 378b; Lynne deBenedette 216.


Henry Johnson brought the class to order leading song on page 48t. Leaders: Jeff Sheppard 176b; Mary Florence Smith 276; Linton Ballinger 81t; Jenny Willard 426b; Everette Denney 405; Mary Elizabeth Lee 209; Richard Mauldin 72b; Shelbie Sheppard 269; Keith Willard 112; Nate Green and Norma Green 473; Travis Keeton 426t; Laura Clawson 362; Berkley Moore 26; Karen Clark 497; Judy Mincey 538; Karen Ivey and Richard Ivey 208; Lee Rogers 185; Kelly House 192; John Etheridge 189; Cassie Franklin 220.


Dennis George and Rodney Ivey brought the class together leading song on page 47t. Leaders: Hershell King 441; Edith Tate 336; Clarke Lee 391; Judy Caudle 361; Bob Cull 178; Jeannette DePoy 229; Dennis George and Betty Wright 454; B.M. Smith 182; Amber Springfield and Ashley Keeton 299; Bob Meek 270; Louis Hughes 76b; Tish Crocker 47b; Gary Gronau 137.


The afternoon session was called to order by Glenn Keeton leading song on page 196. Leaders: Dave Ressler 122; Allison Ivey 300; Danny Creel 383.

A business session was held for the purpose of electing officers with the following elected or appointed to serve: Chairman—Glenn Keeton; Vice Chairman—Jeff Sheppard; Secretaries—Linda Thomas and Elene Stovall; Arranging Committee—Bud Oliver, Max Berueffy, and Cassie Franklin; Memorial Committee—Linton Ballinger, Ruth Brown, and Jewel Wootten; Finance Committee—Rodney Ivey, Don Bowen, and Richard Ivey; Resolutions Committee—Amber Springfield, Keith Willard, and Jerry Enright; Chaplain—Harrison Creel. End of business session.

Leaders: Mattie Townsel 68b; Merle Mateika 82t; Bill Dunn 160b; Hubert Nall 186; Bill Stewart 36b; Ruth Wyers and Tish Crocker 490; Teenie Moody 428; Terry Hullett 29t; Elsie Moon and Flarce Creel 73t; Glenn Keeton 503; Chip Ward 442; Mary Neville 163b; J.L. Hopper 304; Stuart Ivey 436; Naomi Morse 272; Seth Houston 146; Aubrey Barfield 551.


David Ivey brought the class to order leading song on page 114. Leaders: Seth Holloway 388; Katie Shimizv 181; David Yeager 410t; Karen Freund 278b; Richard DeLong 349; Larry Gordon 183; Denice Burleson 218; Buell Cobb 417; Coy Ivey and Karen Ivey 532; Danny Creel, Wanda Capps, Ann Jett, Cindy Tanner, and Cassie Franklin 342; Bill Hogan 198; Velton Chafin 97; Dr. Julietta Haynes 200; Gary Smith and Mark Kubrych 569b; Leon Ballinger 120; Tommie Spurlock 430; David McGinty 34b; Sarah Beasley Smith 108t.

Announcements were made. Glenn Keeton, Jeff Sheppard, and Harrison Creel led song on page 111b as the closing song. Harrison Creel dismissed the class with prayer.

Sunday, November 26

The Sunday morning session began with Chairman Glenn Keeton leading song on page 32t. Harrison Creel offered the morning prayer.

Leaders: Glenn Keeton 64; Jeff Sheppard 61; Linda Thomas and Elene Stovall 217, 186; Bud Oliver and Cassie Franklin 73t, 42; Max Berueffy 177; Rodney Ivey, Don Bowen, and Richard Ivey 182, 384; Jewel Wootten, Ruth Brown, and Norma Green 482, 101t, 176t; Amber Springfield 155; Keith Willard 100; Jerry Enright 77t; Ken Tate 37b; Milton Oliver 314; Samuel Sommers 477; Margie Smith 313t; B.J. Harris 303; John Plunkett 213b; Floy Wilder 327; Evelyn Harris 47t; Carmon Brothers 112; Lola Crowder 278b.


Jeff Sheppard brought the class to order leading song on page 75. Leaders: Bonnie Flowers 542; Stuart Ivey 298; LaRue Allen 551; Tommie Spurlock 565; Estelle Flowers 220; Thomas Willard 98; Larry Gordon 168; Aubrey Barfield 306; Ashley Keeton 283; Freeman Wootten 48b; Judy Mincey 540; Gary Gronau 222; Becky Browne 304; Buell Cobb 425; Allison Stovall 454; Berkley Moore 171; Mary Neville 480; Betty Wright 323b.


Jackie Tanner brought the class to order leading song on page 299. Leaders: Coy Ivey, David Ivey, Karen Ivey, and Allison Ivey 475; Mattie Townsel 48t; Gary Smith, Stefan Trenner, and Mark Kuprych 31t; Henry Johnson 70b; Jeannette DePoy 339; Bill Dunn 166.

Ruth Brown, Jewel Wootten, and Norma Green presented the memorial lesson.

Ruth Brown talked about the fellowship of Sacred Harp singers and the loss of singers during the past year. She presented her theme by using verses from different songs.

Jewel Wootten read the list of the remembered deceased: Allene Stanford, Vedie Touchstone, Jack Smith, Dollie DeLong Hudgins, Lillie Belle Ayers, and J.D. Muse—Georgia; Arthur Phillips, Marie Aldridge, Virgil Phillips, Ruby Phillips, Herbert Phillips, Ester Wall Brown, Rosa Hughes, Raymond Fannin, Willard Hopper, Mary Oden, Horace Batchelor, Shelton Williamson, Lucille Forman, Arnell Henry, and Gene Wakefield—Alabama; Karen House—New York; Fred Knavert—Maryland; John Cawley—Indiana; Susan Garber—Connecticut; Douglas Campbell—Michigan; Ed Craig—Texas; Verla Ross—Florida.

Richard DeLong led song on page 285t and spoke of the deceased and their love for Sacred Harp music.

Norma Green read the names of the sick and shut-ins: John Henry Busby, Tommye Denson Mauldin, Lonnie Rogers, Vivian Rogers, Katherine Benefield, Mozelle Sheppard, Lucille Tolbert, Pauline Childers, Ms. Mimms, Jap Walton, Joyce Walton, Eloise Watkins, Lawrence Underwood, Lula Underwood, Wood Moore, Polly Moore, Woodie Walker, Ruby Wilks, Warren Mason, Gladys McGraw, Revy Williamson, Mavis Price, Annie Brothers, and Lillie Lybrand.

Becky Browne led song on page 340 for the sick and shut-ins. Ruth Brown led the first verse of “Amazing Grace” with the tenors singing while the other parts hummed. Louis Hughes closed the memorial with prayer.


Glenn Keeton brought the afternoon session to order leading song on page 46. Leaders: B.M. Smith 273; Lynne deBenedette 430; Cindy Tanner 198; Richard DeLong 550; Kelly House 236; David Ivey 172; Ted Mercer 151; Reba Dell Windom 216; Mary Florence Smith 302; Dennis George 434; Shelbie Sheppard 28b; Dave Ressler 455; Hubert Nall 34b; Willie Mae Moon 354t; Karen Freund 56b; Seth Houston 203; Jenny Willard 422; David Yeager 523b; Naomi Morse 504; Bill Stewart 452; Lee Rogers 474; Edith Tate 35; Harrison Creel and Flarce Creel 512; Liz Bryant 546; Laura Clawson 282; Louis Hughes 448t; Chip Ward 142; Jo Dell Albi 385t; Nate Green and Norma Green 393; Karen Ivey, Allison Ivey, Elene Stovall, and Allison Stovall 192; Sarah Beasley Smith 129.

A business session was held for the purpose of hearing reports.

The Finance Committee report was given by Linda Thomas. Balance brought forward $1,970.52; interest from CD $92.18; collection $1,359.05; total $3,421.75. Expenditures: supplies $140.13; food $443.31; gift to the church $250.00; cleaning of church $75.00; minutes $60.00. Total expenses $968.44. Balance after expenses $2,453.31. A motion was made, seconded, and approved to accept the report as given.

Elene Stovall reported that 184 songs were led and 125 leaders were registered from 14 states and 3 countries during the two-day convention. States and countries represented were: Alabama—63; Georgia—25; Vermont—8; Kentucky—5; Missouri—4; Illinois—3; Minnesota—3; Rhode Island—3; Florida—2; Indiana—2; Michigan—2; Tennessee—1; Texas—1; Massachusetts—1; Germany—1; Canada—1.

The Resolutions Committee report was given by Keith Willard.

“On behalf of the class of the one hundred-first annual Alabama State Sacred Harp Convention, we offer great thanks to all who have made this convention a success:

(1) To Almighty God for the gifts of life, health, and for fellowship through our music;

(2) To our loved ones who have preserved this sacred tradition through the generations;

(3) To the members, and especially Elder Edwin Farris of Mount Pleasant Home Primitive Baptist Church, for welcoming us into their church;

(4) To everyone who participated in preparing the wonderful meals and refreshments;

(5) To the officers and committees of the convention for their leadership;

(6) To those who came from near and far to take part in this convention; and

(7) To the local singers who have made everyone feel at home.”

The business session was closed.

Announcements were made. Glenn Keeton, Jeff Sheppard, and Harrison Creel led song on page 62 as the closing song. Harrison Creel closed the convention with prayer.

Chairman—Glenn Keeton; Vice Chairman—Jeff Sheppard; Secretaries—Linda Thomas and Elene Stovall.