Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Calhoun County Convention

Mt. Moriah Primitive Baptist Church, between Anniston and Jacksonville, Alabama

September 18-19, 1999

Saturday, September 18

The eighty-fifth session of the Calhoun County Sacred Harp Convention met at Mt. Moriah Primitive Baptist Church in the Four Mile Community between Anniston and Jacksonville, Alabama on the third Sunday and Saturday before in September.

The class was called to order by Roy Nelson leading songs on pages 101t and 87. Felton Denney led the opening prayer.

Ruth Brown welcomed everyone and expressed her appreciation for all who came to support this singing.

Roy Nelson led song on page 145 (t? b?); Billy Joe Harris 303, 225t; Evelyn Harris 155, 89; Mary Lambert Smith 72b, 104; Pearl Guier 59, 127;

The class organized with the following officers elected or appointed to serve: Chairman—Roy Nelson; Vice Chairman—Billy Joe Harris; Secretary—Evelyn Harris; Arranging Committee—Pearl Guier and Hester Edwards; Memorial Committee—Mary Lambert Smith.

Leaders: Jeff Sheppard 143, 124; S.T. Reed 125, 318 (by request for Eula Johnson); Reba Norton 334, 208; Everette Denney 490, 489b; Hilda Morrison 378t, 285t; John Plunkett 468, 52t.


Roy Nelson brought the class to order leading song on page 128. Leaders: Jessica Davis 68b, 166b; Lamar Smith and Randall Smith 76b, 36b; Rebecca Johnson 388, 340; Kenneth DeLong 316, 568; Floy Wilder 224, 63; Dennis George and son, Tommy 354b, 117; Jimmy Cates 112, 137; Louise Nelson 350; Charles Woods 203, 294.


Roy Nelson brought the afternoon session to order leading song on page 434. Leaders: Jimmie Denney 56 (t? b?), 61; Lou Cotney 172, 189; Henry Johnson 30b, 462; Nate Green and Norma Green 126, 46; Felton Denney 460, 31t; Shelbie Sheppard 45t, 556; Bud Oliver 29t, 201b; Leola Smith 234, 217; Hershell King 176b, 426t; Jewel Wootten 569b, 441; Milton Oliver 314, 222; Charlene Wallace 270, 283; Don Bowen 171, 276; Judy Mincey 492, 124; Ora Martin 168, 426b; Joan Aldridge 88t; Tonya George 268; Charles Creel 216, 428; Jeff Sheppard 300, 172 (for Shelton Williamson who was present, but not able to lead); Coy Ivey 405, 30t; Ruth Brown and Hester Edwards 335, 73b.

Announcements were made. Roy Nelson and B.J. Harris led song on page 277 as the closing song. Everette Denney dismissed the class with prayer.

Sunday, September 19

The Sunday morning session was brought to order by Roy Nelson leading song on page 32t. The morning prayer was offered by Lamar Smith.

Leaders: B.J. Harris 452, 503; Mary Lambert Smith 31b, 30b; Pearl Guier 448b, 49t; Bobby Jackson 569b, 290; Joan Aldridge 298; Jimmy Cates 63, 37b; Charlene Wallace and Carlene Griffin 99, 155; Richard Ivey 343, 270; Lou Cotney 300, 218; Jackie Tanner 144, 47t; Elene Stovall 454, 217; Lonnie Rogers 318, 348b; Willie Mae Moon 441, 460.


B.J. Harris called the class together leading song on page 515b. Leaders: Coy Ivey 196; Cassie Franklin and Coy Ivey 222; Eloise Watkins 340, 171; Louis Hughes 57, 67; Daphene Causey 170, 291; Buell Cobb 26, 33b.

Buell Cobb, on behalf of the Sacred Harp Publishing Company, made a presentation of a plaque to the family of Lessie Cates for her contribution and dedication to Sacred Harp singings and their traditions. Family members present: Jimmy Cates, Doris Cates, Jeff Sheppard, and Shelbie Sheppard.

Evelyn Harris led songs on pages 101t and 225t.

A memorial service was held by Mary Lambert Smith who spoke of memories of Lessie Cates as well as her mother, Luddie Lambert. She spoke of how much her mother looked forward to coming to this convention every year, and her preparation, and riding the Greyhound bus to get here.

Mary Lambert Smith led song on page 339 for all the deceased, those who have passed away this past year as well as those in years passed.

The sick and shut-ins were remembered. Mary Lambert Smith led song on page 403 for a long list of those ill and not able to attend. Lonnie Rogers closed the memorial with prayer.


Billy Joe Harris began the afternoon session leading song on page 337. Leaders: Estelle Flowers 76b, 208; Lamar Smith 36b, 46; Cindy Franklin 139, 137 (for Virgil Phillips); Cindy Franklin and Karen Ivey 475 (for Virgil Phillips, by request); Stuart Ivey 299, 182; Jessica Davis 124, 145b; Howard McGuire 45t, 392; Linda Thomas 391, 209; Bud Oliver 215, 384; Karen Ivey 112, 207; Henry Johnson 565b, 288; Leola Smith 349, 36t; Earlis McGraw 148, 389; Cassie Franklin 224, 95b; Don Bowen 178, 66; Bonnie Flowers 345b, 172; Rodney Ivey 373, 551; Dennis George 390, 480; Milton Oliver 328, 430; David Ivey 329; Shelbie Sheppard and David Ivey 186, 282; Jeff Sheppard 34b (for Virgil Phillips and Lonnie Rogers), 322; Ruth Brown and Hester Edwards 142, 104 (for Alice Edwards).

Announcements were made. Roy Nelson and B.J. Harris led song on page 97 as the closing song. Louis Hughes dismissed the class with prayer.

Chairman—Roy Nelson; Vice Chairman—B.J. Harris; Secretary—Evelyn Harris.