Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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National Sacred Harp Convention

First Christian Church, Birmingham, Alabama

June 16-18, 2011

Thursday, June 16

The 32nd session of the National Sacred Harp Convention was called to order by Mark Davis leading 101t. The opening prayer was offered by Marlin Beasley.

Leaders: Gaston White 155; Hubert Nall 46; Cheryl Foreman 492; Buell Cobb 74b; Helen Brown 472; Sonny Erwin 480; Elizabeth Stoddard 101b; Sandie Scott 347; Robert Stoddard 32t; Mary Wright 180; Pat Temple 373; Philippa Stoddard 269; Henry Guthery 434; Gary Smith 99; Judy Chambless 142. Mary Pat Spencer, of the First Christian Church, welcomed visitors to the church.


Beverly Coates brought the class back to order leading 30t. Leaders: Delone Cobbs 33b; Ginny Ely 542; Marlin Beasley 448t; Jan Cobb, Mike Cobb, Amanda Cobb, Buell Cobb, and Helen Brown 313t; Mary Francis Clay and family 274t; Eliza Marcus 330b; Leon Pulsinelle 485; Tim Cook 174.

The Convention went into a business session with the following officers and committees elected and/or appointed as follows: Chairman-Mark Davis; Co-Vice Chairmen—Buell Cobb, Gaston White, and Hubert Nall; Chaplain—Jesse Roberts; Secretaries—Kathy Williams and Cheryl Foreman; Arranging Committee—Helen Brown, Sonny Erwin, and Elizabeth Stoddard; Resolutions Committee—Pat Temple and Mary Wright; Memorial Committee—Mary Whitehurst and Beverly Coates.


Robert Stoddard brought the class back to order leading 277. Leaders: Bea Carnathan 568; Frank Strickland 100; Kathy Folsom 47b; Lance Phillips 208, 340; Haydn Arp 564; Nicoletta Rogers 328; Eddie Mash 425; Rosalind Oldham 303; Henry McGuire 460; Ed Thacker 91; Rebecca Over 532; Chris Brown 102; Mary Skidmore 168; Dorothea Maynard 304; Eugene Forbes 186; Margaret Gillanders 534; Al McCready 84; Paula Picton 358; Carroll Lunsford 111t. Marlin Beasley offered the blessing for the noon meal.


The afternoon session was brought to order by Frank Strickland leading 145b. Leaders: Mary Whitehurst 436; Bill Stewart 569b; Wade Kotter 148; Judy Hauff 172; John Merritt 312b; Ted Brown 35; Susan Cherones 63; Mike Hawkins 29t; Bruce Coates 535; Judy Whiting 354t; Barbara Swetman 40; Dan Brittain 193; Melanie Hauff 421; Robert Kelley 522; Henry Johnson 521; Julietta Haynes 200; Cathryn Bearov 30b (for Kathy Williams’ father); Clyde Avery 560; Lois Badey 143; Stephen Rogers 68b; Will Dove 196.


Mark Davis brought the class back together leading 108t. Leaders: Joanne Fuller 406; Leland Kusmer 377; Charlotte Ehrman 157; David Ivey 103; Richard Schmeidler 120; Frank DeBolt 515; Elene Stovall 500; Randy Webber 294; Daniel Lee 82t; Beverly Coates 107; Becky Briggs 384; Carolyn Thompson 298; Nathan Rees 98; Mary Ellen Schrock 171; Jonathan Smith 482.

Mark Davis led 378b to close Thursday’s session. The closing prayer was offered by Ed Thacker.

Friday, June 17

The Friday session of the National Sacred Harp Singing Convention was opened by Mark Davis leading 37b. Marlin Beasley offered the opening prayer.

Leaders: Gaston White 66; Hubert Nall 176b; Buell Cobb 81b; Cheryl Foreman 481; Sonny Erwin 454; Robert Stoddard 85; Geraldine Sharpton 318; Elizabeth Stoddard 39t; Helen Brown 411; Jesse P. Karlsberg 500; Lela Crowder 564; Charles McCravy 121; Lomax Ballinger 406; Claudia Dean 462; Al McCready and Aine Ui Cheallaigh 155; Nell Estes 269; Aldo Ceresa 456; Ottis Sides and Linda Sides 475.


The class reconvened with Ted Brown leading 111b. Leaders: Harrison Creel 342; Tina Becker 209; Larry Ballinger 208; Sarah Vaillancourt 63; Cindy Mann and family 159; Judy Whiting 441; Blake Sisemore 528; Amber Davis 391; Virgel Campbell 361; Beth Branscome 300; Earl Ballinger 203; Dorothea Maynard 442; B.M. Smith 225t; Judy Mincey 504; Warren Steel 453; Linda Thomas and Dan Brittain 472; Matt Hinton 485; Sarah Beasley 340.


The class reconvened with Dan Brittain leading 230. Leaders: Daphene Causey 200; Rodney Ivey 432; Natalie Davis and Corissa Sweatt 87; Cassie Allen 272; Leon Ballinger 273; Virginia Douglas 49b; Charles Woods and Arlene Woods 283; Karen Rollins 298; Billy Thompson 108t; Charlene Wallace 99; Philip Denney 86; Philippa Stoddard 112; Steve Adams and Carolyn Thompson 378t; Ruth Johnson 172 . The blessing of the noon meal was offered by Marlin Beasley.


Mary Skidmore led 503 to bring the class together after lunch. Leaders: Paula Picton 144; Rick Foreman 417; Bridgett Kennedy 168; Michael Walker 214; Julietta Haynes 192; Judy Caudle 345b; Chris Brown 466; Pat Temple 232; Eddie Pierce 282; Cora Sweatt 445; Nate Zweig 346; Cindy Tanner 368; Arlon Gardner 67; Sarah Kahre 277; Oscar McGuire and Katie McGuire 515; Pam Nunn 220; Mel Sampson 149; Mary Wright 546; Stanley Smith 53; Elene Stovall 189; Daryl Chesney 464; Gail Aagaard 68b; Mark Davis 236.


Eugene Forbes brought the class back to order leading 101b. Leaders: Daniel Lee 349; Susan Cherones 74b; Jeff Sheppard 556; Barbara Swetman 145b; Frank DeBolt 452; Mary Ellen Schrock 270; Mary Whitehurst 498; David Ivey 448b; Leland Kusmer 348t; Judy Hauff 216; Henry Johnson 55; Beverly Coates 385t; Gary Smith 344; Margaret Gillanders 182.

Mark Davis led 160b as the closing song. The closing prayer was offered by Marlin Beasley.

Saturday, June 18

The Saturday session of the National Sacred Harp Singing Convention was called to order by Mark Davis leading 123t. Marlin Beasley offered the opening prayer.

Leaders: Gaston White 276; Hubert Nall 313t; Cheryl Foreman 187; Buell Cobb 83t; Marlin Beasley 73t; Sandie Scott 385b; Helen Brown 426b; Sonny Erwin 77t; Randy Webber 268; Sarah Vaillancourt 72b; Charlotte Ehrman 365; Jack Nelson 513; Cathryn Bearov 114; John Kelso 210; Judy Chambless 501; Sharon DuPriest 208; Carroll Lunsford 204; Kathy Folsom 340; Nate Zweig 288; Sister Susan Karina Dickey 63.


Henry Johnson brought the class back to order by leading 70b. Leaders: Jenny Acton 170; Richard Schmeidler 543; Coy Ivey and Linda Thomas 384; Lou Cotney 218; Natalie Davis and Corissa Sweatt 145b; Carly Westmoreland and Theresa Westmoreland 32t; Brandon Acton 40; Oscar McGuire 573.

The memorial lesson was conducted by Mary Whitehurst and Beverly Coates. Mary Whitehurst spoke on behalf of the sick and homebound. She read the list of names and led 70t.

Beverly Coates made remarks based on a passage from the song on page 320, and read the following list of deceased: Ernestine Pipkin, Emogene Lunsford Roberts, Billy Williams, Vernelle Forbes Amason, Christine Gandy, H. J. Jackson, Myrtle Wootten, and Rhoda Norris—Alabama; George Jones, Edwin Reed, and Ada Smith Fisher—Texas; George Holland—Georgia; Bob Meek—Kentucky; Virginia Cowart—Arkansas; George Rutherford—Florida; George Seiler—New York; Geraldine Simon—California; Bernice Embry—Mississippi; Ted Stewart—Colorado; Frances Ceresa—Michigan; Kathy Jones—Tennessee; Henry Bizzell—North Carolina; Joanne Bowman—Massachusetts, Joyce Over—United Kingdom; Anne Vera Sigut—Switzerland. Beverly Coates led 499b in their memory. Marlin Beasley closed the memorial lesson with a prayer.

Leaders: Helen Brown and Sonny Erwin 282; Bruce Coates 235; Bea Carnathan 80b; David Carlton 254; Ginnie Holland Prater 186; Dylan Feezell and Linda Thomas 435; Matt Hinton 142; Don Keeton 76b; Kathy Williams 437; Richard Ivey 458; Melanie Hauff 271t; Mary Kitchens Gardner 43; Eugene Forbes 496; Rebecca Over 381; Robert DuPree 569b; Gail Aagaard 503. Marlin Beasley offered the blessing for the noon meal.


The singing reconvened with Bridgett Kennedy leading 82t. Leaders: Robert Chambless 143; Seth Holloway 439; Judy Mincey 468; Arlon Gardner 277; Nathan Rees 422; Daphene Causey 198; Ted Brown 391; Julietta Haynes 269; Rodney Ivey 400; Virgel Campbell 167; Jonathan Smith 110; Ginnie Ely 196; Warren Steel 32b; Judy Hauff 250; Susan Cherones 74b; Daryl Chesney 492; Tina Becker 312b; Andrew Hill 480; Sarah Kahre 330b; Henry Johnson 539; Pat Temple 33t; Rich Hoffman 192; Mary Wright 71; Carolyn Thompson 505.

A business session was called to order to hear committee reports. The Finance Committee thanked the Convention for contributions that were graciously sufficient to cover expenses.

The Secretary reported that 467 people from twenty-one states registered during the Convention. There were 151 leaders who led 234 songs. The numbers by state and country: Alabama—356; Georgia—28; Tennessee—23; Mississippi—14; Florida—10; Illinois—5; South Carolina—5; Texas—5; Massachusetts—4; Louisiana—2; Maine—2; New York—2; Washington, DC—2; Wisconsin—2; Arizona—1; California—1; Colorado—1; Minnesota—1; New Jersey—1; North Carolina—1; Oregon—1.

The Resolutions Committee gave the following report: Be it resolved that this convention thanks God for the opportunity to meet and sing together in this space; that the convention thanks Mary Pat Spencer, pastor of the First Christian Church, for her hospitality; that we thank all those who have prepared food and helped to serve, with special thanks to Charlie Ballard; that we thank Ginnie Ely and Warren Steel for making the alternative singing a great evening of song; that we thank the officers of the convention for all their hard work; that we thank those who have keyed for the convention these three days; that we thank the members of the committees. A motion was made and carried to accept the reports and add them to the minutes. The business session was closed.

Leaders: Mark Davis 178; Mary Kitchens Gardner and Elene Stovall 436; Mary Kitchens Gardner 385b; Richard Ivey 546; the Beasley family 81t; Helen Brown, Ted Brown, Margaret Gillanders, and Rebecca Over 278t.

The officers led 62 as the traditional closing song of the convention, and those who wished took the parting hand. Marlin Beasley offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Chairman—Mark Davis; Vice Chairman—Buell Cobb; Secretaries—Kathy Williams and Cheryl Foreman