Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings

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Potomac River Convention

Washington, D.C.

March 31-April 2, 2000

Friday, March 31

A New Traditions Singing began at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 31st, at the Pohick Episcopal Church, Lorton, Virginia. Tom Tucker greeted the class and led song on page 66.

The songs below were led by their own composers, unless otherwise noted.

Leaders: Mary Kay Friday “Pohick” (by Dan Britain); John Redman 58 (EH); Dick Levine 55t (EH); Blake Morris “Dodd”; Gina Balestracci 45t (EH); Dan Hertzler “O Turn Ye” (AV); Thom Metzger “The Stone”; Roland Hutchinson “Boston” (AH); Nicholas P. Schliapin “Star”.

Katharine Manning welcomed everyone. Announcements were made. Katharine Manning led song on page 53(EH); Mary Ann Daly led “Provisions” and “Eclipse”.


Tom Tucker brought the class back leading song on page 31t. Tom Tucker led “The Angel Song” (by Robert Lowrey, and harmonized by Tom Tucker).

Leaders: Miriam Kilmer “Great Falls”; Ginnie Ely “Come Thou Font” (by Nettleton); Nicholas P. Schliapin “Nantahala”; Rosemary Greenaway 110 (EH); Blake Morris “Ireland”; Mary Ann Daly “Liberty Hall” (by Chapin); Roland Hutchinson “Dirigens”; Adrian Herndon “Mount Hope”; Dan Hertzler “Walpole”. Tom Tucker closed the session with “Our Meeting is Over” (Traditional).

Saturday, April 1

The eleventh annual Potomac River Sacred Harp Singing Convention was called to order at 10:00 a.m. by Janine Smith (last year’s chair) leading song on page 68b. Tom Padwa led the opening prayer. Katharine Manning welcomed the class and led song on page 82t; Tim Slattery 52t; and Miriam Kilmer led 378b.

The business meeting was held with the election or appointment of the following officers and committees: Chair—Katharine Manning; Vice Chair—Tom Tucker; Secretaries—Miriam Kilmer and Tim Slattery (assisted by Ginnie Ely); Chaplains—Tom Padwa and Henry Bizzell; Arranging Committee—Steven McMaster, John delRe, Bob Hall, and Cathy Tucker; Finance—Cathy Tucker; Memorial Committee—Craig Baughan, Marty De Nys, Paula McGray, and Gail Doss; Pitching (Keying)—Jean Seiler, Bob Parr, and Paula McGray; Resolutions Committee—Beverly Fleming (assisted by Pat Temple); Registration—Marlene Levine, Matt Levine, Mimi Stevens, and Frank Evans; Food—Janine Smith, Mary Ann Daly, Jim Strube, Gillie Campbell, and Howard Frost (assisted by many others); New Traditions Singing—Tom Tucker; Social Host—Cathy Tucker; Housing and Transportation—Mary Kay Friday; Publicity—Steven Sabol and Miriam Kilmer (flyer).

Leaders: Beth Reed 29t; Louis Freilicher 282; Jon Singer 178; Thom Metzger 217; Dottie Hurley 28t; Steven Sabol 567; Hal Kunkel 333; Joni Seidenstein 99; Karen Morris 49t; Frank Evans 209; Evan Duncan 83b; Howard Tucker-Frost 546; Karen House 34t; Tom Padwa 133; Clare Chapin 40; Mary De Nys 56b; Bob Hall 274t; Nick Schliapin 131b.


Tom Tucker called the class together leading song on page 42. Leaders: John Daniel delRe, Anna Taylor, and Daniel Henkin 49b; Blake Morris 433; Marilyn Estep 327; Kelly House 475 (in memory of Virgil Philips); Don Polaski 288; Joanne DeVoe 77t; Catherine Oss 107; Sandra Hack Polaski 84; Brad Ogelsby 192; Jean Marcotte 312b; Jean Seiler 200; Stephen Holland 350; Craig Baughan 229; Bill Holt 419; Beth Todd 335; Phill Wisor 33b; Elise Meyer-Bothling 67; Gina Balestracci 176t; Fred Beardsley 532; Barbara Swetman 390; Susan Kelley 515; John Redman 236; Mary Wright 114. Tom Padwa offered grace for the noon meal.


The afternoon session was called to order with John delRe leading song on page 32b. Leaders: Gail Doss 38 (t? b?); Eileen Metzger 106; Joyce Saxon 454; Laura Densmore 74 (t? b?); Ginnie Ely 196; Adrian Mariano 481; Kelly Macklin 220; Doron Henkin 224; Marty De Nys 474; Leslie Alperin 268; Dan Hertzler 448t; Patricia Temple 566; Bob Parr 304; Rosemary Greenaway 383; Allen Fannin 70b; Juanita Heyerman 38b; Ginny Landgraf 564; Tim Slattery 344; Paula McGray 272; Guy Bankes 28b; Jerilyn Schumacher 528; Art Broadus 147t.


Stephen McMaster brought the class to order leading song on page 318. Leaders: Joe Todd 480; Susan Bingham 198; Mary Kay Friday 506; Roland Hutchinson 242; Lewis Naylor 347; Claire Simon 146; Robert Todd 313b; Dick Levine 102; George Seiler 269; Brad Oglesby 503; Tom Padwa 145b; Sarah Davie 547; Sharon McKinley 191; Catherine Oss 137; Kelly House 362.

Announcements were made. Katharine Manning invited everyone to attend the Social, and led song on page 378t as the closing song. Tom Padwa closed the Saturday session with prayer.

A Saturday night social was hosted by Cathy and Tom Tucker at their home. There was singing from the Cooper Book Edition, The Sacred Harp, An Eclectic Harmony, Christian Harmony, and new compositions.

Sunday, April 2

The Sunday session of the Potomac River Convention was called to order at 10:00 a.m. by Katharine Manning leading song on page 60. Henry Bizzell led the class in the morning prayer.

Leaders: Tom Tucker 501; Miriam Kilmer 504; Tim Slattery 415; Cathy Tucker 327; Mary Ann Daly 38b; Marty De Nys 299; Kelly Macklin 291; Flawn Williams 56b; Gail Doss 270; Craig Baughan 66; Guy Bankes 556; Anne Pratt 496; Art Broadus 452b; Laura Densmore 542; Allen Fannin 124; Leyland delRe 127; Eric Hildebrant 551; Juanita Heyerman 71; John Redman 358; Beth Todd 250; Dick Levine 68b; Leslie Alperin 155.


The singing resumed with Doron Henkin, Daniel Henkin, Gil Henkin, Tommy Hall, and Anna Taylor leading song on page 113. Leaders: Patricia Temple 421; Robert Todd 198; Claire Simon 159; John delRe 360; Susan Bingham 361; Jason Law 122; Jerilyn Schumacher 485; Dan Hertzler 535; Barbara Swetman 203; Hal Kunkel 470; Eileen Metzger 148; Phill S. Wisor 335; Mary Wright 314; George Seiler 473; Joni Seidenstein 142; Jon Singer 31t.

Craig Baughan opened the Memorial Lesson speaking on “Walking a Loved One Home,” read a prayer, and led song on page 390.

Paula McGray spoke about Virgil Phillips, who “would not leave anyone out,” then read the names of the deceased. Gail Doss led song on page 137 for the deceased “the way Virgil sang it,” with the alto part from the Cooper Book Edition.

The names of the deceased remembered: Virgil Phillips—Alabama; Jim O’Connor—D.C.; Jim McCarty—Massachusetts; Dick Hedges and Marsha Foster—Maryland; Marie Davie—Minnesota; Richard Grady Partin, Dick Tarrier, and Nancy Carol Metz—North Carolina; Ed Wright—New Hampshire; Agnes Judge, Carolyn Davis Avins, Nicole Schnarr, and William Medford—New Jersey; Ben Hertzler—New Mexico; Akram Scott and Harriet Thompson—New York; Medy Wantland—Oklahoma; Irma Burgess—Pennsylvania; Rev. W. Graham Smith and Terry Offield—Virginia; George and Pat Lippi—Wisconsin.

Marty De Nys spoke about caring for those “in need of love and in need of building up”, and stated that when we sing this music, our souls are opened. He then read the names of the sick and shut-ins: Dot Garber and Susan Garber—Connecticut; Tom Lumbard—D.C.; Sonya Rae Manning—Florida; Henry Schuman—Michigan; Betty Nikelsky—New Jersey; Tauheedah Scott—New York; Barbara Smith and Sara Esh—Pennsylvania; Evelyn Wade and Grace Hanz—Virginia.

Marty De Nys led song on page 50b for the sick and shut-ins, and closed the memorial lesson with prayer.

Tom Tucker led song on page 129, and Henry Bizzell offered grace for the noon meal.


The class reconvened with Tom Tucker leading song on page 77b. Leaders: Janine Smith 154; Joe Todd 112; Gina Balestracci 173; Bill Holt 376; Paula McGray 276; Doron Henkin 193; Ginnie Ely 454; Henry Bizzel 34 (t? b?); Rosemary Greenaway 171; Anna Taylor 274t; Eric Bean 163t; Elise Meyer-Bothling 72b; Bob Parr 391; Jean Seiler 315; Roland Hutchinson 553; Kacy Pate 442; Thom Metzger 48b; Donna Abrahams 260; David Martin and Donna Abrahams 82t; Mary Kay Friday 455; Frank Evans 64.


Leyland delRe brought the singers back to order with song on page 32t. Leaders: Stephen Holland 288; Mimi Stevens 474; Adrian Mariano 430; Ella Wilcox 254; Phyllis Gonigam 128; Louis Freilicher 410t; Ronni Hendershot 49b; Fred Beardsley 475; Joyce Saxon 35; Jim Wantland 318; Miriam Kilmer 86 (for Peter Pate); Laura Densmore 312b; George Seiler and Jean Seiler 146; Joe Todd and Beth Todd 373; Bob Parr, Ginnie Ely, Bill Holt, and Eric Hildebrant 497.

A business session was held for the purpose of hearing reports.

Secretaries’ Report: During Saturday and Sunday, 152 different songs were led from The Sacred Harp. There were 100 leaders and many co-leaders. There were 169 people registered from 16 states and the District of Columbia.

On behalf of the Resolutions Committee and the entire Convention, Beverly Fleming gave thanks to:

(1) God who made possible the singing;

(2) Chaplains;

(3) Those who did the keying (pitching); and

(4) All those on committes who did an outstanding job.

Special thanks went to:

(1) The Arranging Committee;

(2) Those who hosted out-of-town guests

(3) The registrars, and

(4) Cathy Tucker “for taking on the task of Treasurer”.

We resolve to give a hearty hand to all those unseen helpers who prepared food, set up, and cleaned up. They truly help to make this convention one to be remembered. “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint.”

The Financial Report was given by Cathy Tucker and Tom Tucker. The business session was closed.

Announcements were made. Katharine Manning announced the dates for next year’s Potomac River Convention will be on March 31st, April 1st, and 2nd, 2001.

Katharine Manning led song on page 212, and song on page 62 as the closing song. Henry Bizzell closed the Convention with prayer.

Chair—Katharine Manning; Vice Chair—Tom Tucker; Secretaries—Tim Slattery and Miriam Kilmer.