Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Smith County Sacred Harp
Singing Convention (Cooper Book)

New Harmony Community Center, Tyler, Texas

March 8-9, 2003

Saturday, March 8

The twenty-third session of the Smith County Sacred Harp Singing Convention was called to order by President Jeb Owen at 10:00 a.m. leading 376 and 176t. Chaplain Dallas Smith offered the morning prayer.

Jeb Owen appointed the following committees to serve this session of the convention: Memorial Committee—Gaylon Powell and Myrl Jones; Sick and Shut-ins—Cheryl Foreman; Nominating Committee—John Morris, Lawson Smith, and Robert Vaughn; Arranging Committee—Liz Owen and Sharon Stephenson.

Leaders: Vice President Cheryl Foreman 171, 31t; Secretary Pro-Tem Liz Owen 288, 299; Thomas Smith 192, 235; Terri Schill 358, 282; Robert Vaughn 283, 31b; Lawson Smith 108b, 142; Myrl Jones 189, 300; John Morris 186, 275b; Mary Bachmann “Way Down By The Riverside”, 563; Phyllis Costner 58, 217.


Jeb Owen brought the class back to order leading 392. Leaders: Sue Utz 475, 128; Gaylon Powell 441, 68t; Dale Redman, Jr. 540, 507b; Leon Ballinger 508, 137 (for B.E. Matthews); Myra Palmer 497 (by request); Charlie Vaughn 337, 387; Sharon Stephenson 274t, 572 (for her sister, Tina Walston, in Iowa). Chaplain Dallas Smith introduced his pastor, Rev. Robbie Caldwell, of the New Harmony Baptist Church, and asked him to offer thanks for the noon meal.


President Jeb Owen brought the class to order leading 319. Leaders: Marian Grant 496t, 424; Monica Hill 500, 501; Marcelene Hardy 172, 112; Raven Hill 45, 388 (in honor of her great grand-parents, Andrew and Nobie Smith); Monnie Ross 49t, 335; David Rousseau 179, 127; Margaret Rounsavall 222, 143; Pauline Willis 192, 546; Thomas Smith 304, 136; Terri Schill 406, 573.

Jeb Owen opened the business meeting with the report from the Nominating Committee for officers for the year 2004. President—Cheryl Foreman; Vice President—Myrl Jones; Secretary—Sharon Stephenson; Treasurer—Melba Sue Utz. A motion was made and seconded to accept the committee’s report. The motion was voted on and accepted.

The question of changing the singing back to a one-day singing was brought to the floor. Marcelene Hardy made a motion that the singing go to a one-day singing, motion was seconded. Jeb Owen asked for discussion. No decision could be reached, and Marcelene Hardy withdrew the motion. A motion was made and seconded to table the question for another year.


Vice President Cheryl Foreman opened the afternoon session leading 401. Leaders: Robert Vaughn 40, 187; Lawson Smith 384, 434; Myrl Jones 183, 110; John Morris 543, 553; Mary Bachmann 38t, 225t; Phyllis Costner 395b, 84; Gaylon Powell 447t (by request), 15.

Jeb Owen led 559 and 484 as the closing songs. Chaplain Dallas Smith led the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Sunday, March 9

President Jeb Owen called the convention to order at 9:45 a.m. leading 558. Gaylon Powell offered the morning prayer.

Leaders: President Jeb Owen 444t; Vice President Cheryl Foreman 52t, 511t; Secretary Pro-Tem Liz Owen 119, 54t; Treasurer Melba Sue Utz 274t, 335; Myrl Jones 332, 129 (her father’s song); Mary Bachmann 505, 78; Lawson Smith 189, 155; Terri Schill 230, 383; Sharon Stephenson 418, 45; Thomas Smith 288, 192; Myra Palmer 100, 101t.


Jeb Owen brought the class to order leading 421. Leaders: Marcelene Hardy 299, 298; Gaylon Powell 52b, 286b; Burl Russell 75, 40; Sue Utz 85, 571; Myrl Jones 142, 572; Mary Bachmann 198, 478; Lawson Smith 475, 196.

The memorial lesson was held with Gaylon Powell reading the names of the deceased: B.E. Matthews and Richard Goodrum, then leading 395b for B.E. Matthews, offering comments about how this beloved singer would be missed.

Myrl Jones read I Thessalonians 4:13-14, “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that you sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, then also which sleep in Jesus, will God bring with Him.” Myrl Jones then led 82.

Cheryl Foreman led 268 for the following sick and shut-ins: Azalee Barnett, Jayne McKnight, Jo Redmon, A.A. Smith, Jr., Marie Smith, Kelly Beard, Ernestine Pipkin, Verna Powell, Harold Lackey, and Ophelia Matthews. Burl Russell closed the memorial with prayer.


Jeb Owen brought the class to order leading 138t. Leaders: Terri Schill 339; Thomas Smith 285t; Sharon Stephenson 127; Myra Palmer 573; Marcelene Hardy 358; Gaylon Powell 131t; Burl Russell 164.

Treasurer Melba Sue Utz reported that all expenses had been met.

Jeb Owen expressed how long he had known and sung with the following singers and requested that they join him in the square to lead 491: Lawson Smith, Myra Palmer, and Myrl Jones, all siblings.

Jeb Owen led 62 as the closing song, and those who wished took the parting hand. Jerry Garner offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

President—Jeb Owen; Vice President—Cheryl Foreman; Secretary Pro-Tem—Liz Owen.