Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Emmaus Primitive Baptist Church Singing

Thomaston, Georgia

Saturday, February 28, 2015

The annual Sacred Harp singing at Emmaus Primitive Baptist Church held on Saturday before the first Sunday in March was called to order by Wayne Watson leading 49b. Wayne Watson offered the opening prayer.

The following officers were elected or appointed to serve: Chairman—Wayne Watson; Secretaries—Mary Brownlee and Debora Grosse.

Leaders: Oscar McGuire 34b; David Brodeur and Emily Wells 159, 452; John Brownlee 47b; Lisa Bennett 121, 229; David Grant 317, 546; David Smead 475, 564; Mary Brownlee 78, 84; Debora Grosse 460, 208; Susan Ford 68b.


Oscar McGuire brought the class together by leading 59. Today’s singing was dedicated to the memory of Raymond Hamrick because of what he meant to this singing, and a tribute was read as follows:

Memorial to Raymond Hamrick

Some of us knew Raymond Hamrick all our lives, some not as long, but to all of us he was a much loved teacher, mentor, author, and friend. We all enjoyed a social relationship with him. He was widely read and was a delightful conversationalist. He told us the backstory of many of the songs and their authors, including his own. His deep faith and spirituality were shown in his own songs of praise and adoration to our Redeemer and Heavenly Father. There is no finer tribute or memorial than the legacy of the beautiful songs he authored. We hope they will be sung by generations to come.

We knew Raymond through his nearly lifelong association with Sacred Harp, but he was known mainly in Macon as a master watch and clock repairman and jeweler. He often made house calls to repair clocks that could not be brought into his shop. I saw him often at his workbench, working with tiny parts and tools. Precision and time marked his professional life, and he instructed us, and sometimes admonished us, to pay attention to the time signature in our songs.

I have paraphrased some words taken from an epitaph of a master watch and clock maker who lived in the 1700s as an apt tribute and memorial to Raymond Hamrick: Integrity was the mainspring, and prudence the regulator of the actions of his life. He had the art of disposing of his time so well, that his hours glided by in harmony and dignity. He ran down November 24, 2014, in hopes of being taken in hand by his Maker, thoroughly cleaned, repaired, wound up, and set going in the world to come, when time shall be no more. Respectfully submitted by Mary Brownlee, Emmaus Primitive Baptist Church. The class sang 569t to conclude the memorial lesson.

Leaders: Faye Hollis 340; Martha Harrell 61, 178; Rosemund Watson 503, 282; Sandra Wilkinson 300, 274t; Philip Ford 49t, 63; Melvin Kersey 120, 565.


Leaders: Beth Brownlee Kerkhoff 147t; Abraham Hardy 56b, 297; Ethan Hardy 445, 567; John Hollingsworth 186, 182; Bill Hollingsworth 489, 236; Jonathon Kelso 499, 571; John Plunkett 94, 540; Emily Wells, Ethan Hardy, and Abraham Hardy 284, 268; David Brodeur 81t; Lisa Bennett 344; Bentley McGuire 149, 542; Wayne Watson 480, 112; David Smead 512; Mary Brownlee, Beth Brownlee Kerkhoff, John Brownlee, and Jason Brownlee 566; Debora Grosse 198; Susan Ford 45t; Faye Hollis 276; Martha Harrell 515; Sandra Wilkinson 177; Philip Ford 38b; Melvin Kersey 47t; Bill Hollingsworth 354t; David Grant 354b; John Plunkett and Bob Crawford 143; Bentley McGuire 505, 485; Oscar McGuire 50b.

Rosemund Watson led 347 as the closing song. Wayne Watson offered the closing prayer, and the class was dismissed.

Chairman—Wayne Watson; Secretaries—Mary Brownlee and Debora Grosse