Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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United Sacred Harp Musical Association

Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church, Dunwoody, Georgia

September 11-12, 2004

Saturday, September 11

The one hundred-first session of the United Sacred Harp Musical Association met at Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church in Dunwoody, Georgia on the second Sunday and Saturday before in September. Susan Harcrow called the class to order leading 32t. Ron Harper offered the morning prayer.

Leaders: Susan Harcrow 46; Secretary Nora Parker 36b; Lela Crowder 283; Don Bowen 541 (in memory of Kenneth DeLong); Helen Bryson 522; Oscar McGuire 441; Al Grindon 218; Sandra Wilkinson 384; Alan Pritchett 146; Mary Wright 121; Bob Simmons 313t; Katharine Hough 480; Stephen Metcalf-Conte 56b; Kathy James 30b; Michael Thompson 82t; Virginia Douglas 268; Charles Walker155; Cassie Franklin 418; Andy Morse 542; Pat Temple 535.

RECESS

The class resumed singing with Susan Harcrow leading 142.

A business session was held with the following officers elected or appointed to serve: Chairman—Richard DeLong; Vice Chairman—John Plunkett; Secretary (Permanent)—Nora Parker; Assistant Secretary—Cindy Tanner; Chaplains—Jesse Roberts and Louis Hughes; Arranging Committee—Jeannette DePoy, Lynne deBenedette, and Karen Freund; Memorial Committee—Henry Johnson, Scott DePoy, and Lee Rogers; Resolutions Committee—Ted Mercer and Judy Mincey; Locating Committee—Rodney Ivey and David Carlton; Finance Committee—Lela Crowder, Don Bowen, and Andy Morse. End of business session.

Leaders: Richard DeLong 168; Jerry Schreiber 446; Janice Paulk 478; Malinda Snow 455; David Carlton 377; Phillip Langley 383; Elise Eskew 72b; Ron Harper 344; Judy Mincey 571; Charlene Wallace 548; Judy Caudle 451.

RECESS

John Plunkett, Ellen Jackson, and Pam Helms brought the class to order leading 388. Leaders: Lee Rogers 547; Barbara Swetman 203; Ed Thacker 494; Kiri Miller 430; Junie Wooten 503; Henry Schuman 528; Elsie Moon 436; Micah Roberts 354b; Rosemary Greenaway 475; Louis Hughes 512; Ellie Soler 38b; Jeff Sheppard 35; Laura Timmerman 546; Martha Ann Stegar 198; Carroll Lunsford 332.

LUNCH

The afternoon session was brought to order by Richard DeLong leading 316. Leaders: Ted Mercer 216; Carolyn Deacy 501; Cindy Tanner 182; Scott DePoy 74b; Lynne deBenedette 192; Loy Garrison 498; Rodney Ivey 564; Shelbie Sheppard 211; Jerry Enright 176t; Henry Johnson 375; Sarah Jenkins 110; Dennis George 536; Reba Windom 172; Jeannette DePoy 340; David Ivey 328; Jessica Altman 217; Carla Smith 202; Jesse Roberts 189; Laura Boyd Russell 400; Rich Russell 200; Karen Freund 385b; Matt Hinton 163b; Laura Akerman 532.

RECESS

The class was reassembled with John Plunkett leading 52t. Leaders: Russ Hanson 282; Dr. William “Bill” Reynolds 81t; Tim Reynolds 107; Debora Grosse 106; Tony Hammock 312b; Carol Hanson 186; James Wagner 108t.

Richard DeLong led 47b as the closing song. Jesse Roberts offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Sunday, September 12

The Sunday session was called to order at 9:30 a.m. by Richard DeLong leading 43. Louis Hughes offered the morning prayer.

Leaders: Richard DeLong 60; John Plunkett 492; Nora Parker 394; Ellie Soler 143; Matt Hinton 63; Frances Mary D’Andrea 280; Steven Metcalf-Conte 159; Lee Rogers 474; Alan Pritchett 145b; Don Bowen 283; Janice Paulk 222; James Wagner 354b; Martha Ann Stegar 155; Oscar McGuire 573; Virginia Douglas 49b; Tony Hammock 148; Judy Mincey 475; Danny Creel 269; Cindy Tanner 434; Micah Roberts and Susan Roberts 45t; Mary L. Smith 383; Susan Posey 107; Joel Jenkins 101t; Nate Green and Norma Green 289.

RECESS

The class was reassembled by John Plunkett leading 435. Leaders: Harrison Creel 512; Rick Russell 349; Elsie Moon 292; Jared Wootten, Hayden Wootten, and Jamey Wootten 282; Pat Temple 162; Emily Creel 384; Louis Hughes 181; Teenie Moody 270; Carla Smith 319; Carroll Lunsford 204; Laura Timmerman 27; Jeff Sheppard 540; David Ivey 90; Raymond Hamrick 136; Mary Wright 154; Katharine Hough 372.

RECESS

The class resumed singing with Richard DeLong leading 371. Leaders: Laura Boyd Russell 228; Shelbie Sheppard 481.

The memorial lesson was conducted by Henry Johnson, Scott DePoy, and Lee Rogers. Henry Johnson spoke, read the names of the deceased, and then led 339. Those remembered included: Mavis Price, Christal Crocker, Elvin Guthrie, and Paul Greeson—Alabama; Laura Collins—Tennessee; Mozelle Sheppard, Barbara DePoy, and Estelle Flowers—Georgia; the victims of 9-11; all those in the military, and those who have lost their lives in the war; all deceased members of the DeLong family and other singing friends who are buried in the cemetery at Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church. Jeannette DePoy led 229 in memory of the DeLong family.

Scott DePoy spoke, read the names of the sick and shut-ins, and led 65 in their honor: Bobby Jackson, Jetha Brooks, Brenda Field, Nick Griffin, Kelly Beard, Dean Slaton, Steven Hough, Kay Smith, Larry Olszewski, Edith Tate, Loy Garrison, Dorothy Garrison, March Block, Gertie DeLong, Violet Thomason, Anne Friend, Myrtle Smith, Lois Stanson, Nancy Allen, Terry Wootten, Alice Edwards, Ronnie Meadows, and Eunice Webb.

Lee Rogers spoke about the uncertainty of life. We are not promised another tomorrow, but we should be ready to go if called home. Lee Rogers led 70t, and Elder Edward Cagle closed the memorial with prayer.

LUNCH

The afternoon session was brought to order by Richard DeLong leading 333. Leaders: Karen Freund 205; Lela Crowder 42 (for Bud Oliver); Kiri Miller 112; Bridgett Hill 440; Rodney Ivey and Micah Roberts 225t; “Happy Birthday” to Micah Roberts; Jessica Altman 215; Jerry Enright 77t; Judy Caudle 421; B.M. Smith 560; Carolyn Deacy 456; Jesse Roberts 442; Reba Windom 224; Ted Mercer 88t; Marty Wootten and Lorrie Wootten 430; Henry Johnson 166; Jerry Schreiber 473; Cassie Franklin 196; Rosemary Greenaway 496; Dennis George 542; Lynne deBenedette and Richard DeLong 411; Henry Schuman 429 (for Pauline Childers); Mike Castleberry 515; Barbara Swetman 472.

RECESS

The class was brought to order by John Plunkett leading 208. Leaders: Andy Morse 313b; Kathy James 76b; Ed Thacker 497; Sandra Wilkinson 170; Lucrease Franklin 153; Dr. William “Bill” Reynolds 128; Tim Reynolds 492.

A business session was held to hear reports from various committees.

The Finance Committee Report was given by Nora Parker. The balance brought forward was $1,211.63. The total expenses for the convention were $381.91. Collections received were $507.00. A balance of $1,336.72 is carried forward. A total of thirteen states were represented during the two days of singing.

The Resolutions Committee Report was presented by Ted Mercer and Judy Mincey.

At a time of belated recognition of Sacred Harp Singing as a national treasure, from Harvard Yard to Hollywood, from the Library of Congress to The National Cathedral, it is distressing that Sacred Harp may be endangered in its historic heartland. Let the cord of affection that has bound singers and churches together in the past be renewed.

We urge that the memory of those out on the hillside and in the cemeteries in other Southern communities be honored by continuing the tradition they began.

We, the United Sacred Harp Musical Association, met in the fourth year of our second century and hereby resolve to offer to Almighty God:

  • All honor and praise for His merciful goodness to us and our forbearers in this tradition;
  • The songs he has bestowed upon the composers and the voices lifted through the years to sing;
  • For the ties of family and love that flow throughout this convention, and the fellowship we have with others.

We want to thank:

  • Ebenezer Primitive Baptist church and Elder Edward Cagle for the use of this wonderful sounding church, and the generous hospitality extended to us;
  • All officers, both outgoing and new, for your hard work which made the convention run smoothly and seem effortless;
  • Those who prepared and brought the bountiful, delicious meals;
  • Mike Castleberry and Louis Jones Funeral Home for providing the registration tent.

We resolve to continue to seek the old paths and walk therein. We will endeavor to encourage new singers and singings, and to make a joyful noise unto the Lord all our remaining days, returning to the United Convention wherever it may be held.

Rodney Ivey and David Carlton, Locating Committee, reported that the 102nd session of the United Sacred Harp Musical Association will meet at the Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee.

A motion was made and seconded to accept the reports and to adjourn the business session.

Richard DeLong led 543. Announcements were made. Richard DeLong and John Plunkett led 146 as the closing song. Jesse Roberts offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Chairman—Richard DeLong; Vice Chairman—John Plunkett; Secretary—Nora Parker; Assistant Secretary—Cindy Franklin.