Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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The Big Singing

Old Marshall County Courthouse, Benton, Kentucky

May 25-26, 2019

Saturday, May 25

The third Saturday session of The Big Singing using The Sacred Harp, 1991 Revision, was called to order at 10:00 a.m. by Tim Reynolds, who led 59. Ralph Paris offered the morning prayer. Tim Reynolds led 72b. Leaders: Gene Gilliland 64, 127; Don Waggener 410t, 455; Ralph Paris 135, 141; Erin Fulton 108b, 235; Kerry Lovett 354b, 334; Greta Combs 84, 81t; Mark Cain 53, 45t.


David Carlton and Leah Turner brought the class back together leading 86 and 421. Leaders: Tom Waggener 117, 290; Ray Turner 145b, 551; Larry Brown 99, 63; Tim Reynolds 278t, 313b; Don Waggener 159. Larry Brown asked a blessing before the meal.


Gene Gilliland brought the class back to order leading 128 and 145t. Leaders: Erin Fulton 196, 205; Ralph Paris 66, 89; Mark Cain 182, 339; Kerry Lovett 47b; Greta Combs 200, 178; Larry Brown 49b, 236; David Carlton 547, 496; Ray Turner 532, 125; Tom Waggener and Tim Reynolds 163b, 268; Greta Combs 299; Tim Reynolds 209 (by request). After announcements, Tim Reynolds led 62 as the closing song. Gene Gilliland closed the singing with prayer.

Chairman—Tim Reynolds; Vice Chairman—David Carlton; Secretary—Tim Reynolds

Sunday, May 26

The morning session of the 136th annual Big Singing using The Southern Harmony, compiled by William Walker, was called to order at 10:00 a.m. by Gene Gilliland, who gave opening remarks, an introduction to Southern Harmony singing, and led songs on pages 103 (SoH) and 181t (SoH). Ralph Paris offered the morning prayer.

Leaders: Erin Fulton 33 (SoH), 49 (SoH); David Killingsworth 332 (SoH), 46 (SoH); Ron Pen 133 (SoH), 42 (SoH); Don Waggener 80 (SoH), 256 (SoH); Tim Gregg 83 (SoH), 59 (SoH); Tom Waggener 38 (SoH), 89b (SoH); Marci Thobaben 16 (SoH); Raphael Finkel 144 (SoH), 149b (SoH); James Thobaben 51 (SoH); David Carlton 265 (SoH), 276t (SoH); Ralph Paris 292 (SoH), 296 (SoH); Kerry Lovett 277 (SoH), 8t (SoH); Matt Meacham 11 (SoH), 312t (SoH); Trent Hollinger 252 (SoH), 107 (SoH). Don Waggener gave the prayer before lunch.


The afternoon session was called to order at 1:15 p.m. by Gene Gilliland, who shared some of the early history of The Big Singing in Marshall County, gave an introduction to Southern Harmony singing, and led 103 (SoH) and 10b (SoH). Leaders: Erin Fulton 39t (SoH), 53t (SoH); David Killingsworth 305 (SoH); Ron Pen 189 (SoH); Don Waggener 20 (SoH), 322 (SoH); Tim Gregg 3t (SoH); Tom Waggener 166 (SoH), 165t (SoH); Raphael Finkel 50 (SoH), 123 (SoH); David Carlton 164 (SoH), 310 (SoH); James Thobaben 19t (SoH), 31t (SoH).

The memorial lesson was given by Ralph Paris, who spoke in memory of Eugene Forbes—Alabama; Dorthea Stricklin—Tennessee; and Walter Howney—Missouri. Ralph Paris concluded the memorial lesson leading 192b (SoH) and 193t (SoH).

Leaders: Kerry Lovett 11 (SoH), 89b (SoH); Matt Meacham 83 (SoH), 299 (SoH); Trent Hollinger 39t (SoH), 213 (SoH); Gary Clark 51 (SoH); Mark Cain 296 (SoH); Ray Turner 92t (SoH), 277 (SoH); Gene Gilliland 133 (SoH), 332 (SoH); Kerry Lovett 144 (SoH). Gene Gilliland led 334 (SoH) as the closing song. Gary Clark offered the closing prayer.

Chairman—Gene Gilliland; Vice Chairman—Ralph Paris; Secretary—Kevin Byars