Big Hill Methodist Church Minutes 1881
Rev. John T. Hoyle’s life has been somewhat intriguing to me, since I was bitten by the genealogy bug back in 1997. My mother-in-law, Eleze Hoyle Sain, told me bits and pieces about her grandfather, John T. Hoyle. She told me he was a circuit rider preacher, but didn’t know what denomination.
We found his name on a list of preachers for at least one church, St. Paul Baptist, in Casar, NC. Up until that time, I was inclined to believe he was Methodist. While going through some old papers we found that his affiliation with the Methodists changed and he became affiliated with the Methodist Episcopal Church.
John obviously did not have paper on which to write. He used the backs of picture pages in bound books, such as, The United States Department of Agriculture book for the year 1901. He also used little blank sheets at the backs of these books to jot down how much he owed and to whom, and also when others borrowed from him, and how much. I believe he would have been a great journalist, if he were living today, because I have found so many of his notes.
Eleze always had a yearning to learn where her grandmother, Eliza Jane Swofford, wife of John T., was buried. One summer afternoon, Eleze brought two or three boxes of old antique books to my house that had been owned by John. Well, I could hardly wait to get into those books. I was hoping that he had written something somewhere that would give us that nugget of information! Laboriously, I thumbed through each and every page of each book. Some had little notes, but I finally came upon what I was looking for. He tells us that Eliza Jane died in 1891 in Clifton, SC, but does not give us the place of burial. He also gave us an idea of the torment he and Eliza had gone through by writing “Much trouble”. They had five children who died before the age of three. I have never found out the cause of their deaths. There was so much information on this one page, I just couldn’t believe it! I was rejoicing and crying at the same time. I took this book and a copy to Eleze so that she could rejoice with me. It was so wonderful to have someone to share this genealogy hobby with me. We have never found out exactly where Eliza was buried, but Eleze was convinced that wherever she may be, that her grave would be marked with a stone. All the children’s graves are marked with stones, and it is very unlikely that he would not have marked Eliza’s grave. Later, in this same book, I found about the same information on another page.
In the collection of books of John, there is one called “The Abbott’s Great Work”, copyright unknown as the first several pages are torn out. In the back of this book were several blank pages. It was on these pages that John recorded the minutes of the South Mountain Mission, of which he was the secretary. I would appreciate it, if you claim any of these people as yours, some information on them, and if anyone knows anything about the Clifton, SC area, as to where Eliza may have been buried, I would appreciate the information.
Big Hill Methodist Church Minutes 1881
“Third quarterly conference for South Mountain Mission held at Big Hill August the 23, 1881. A.M. Long, P.C. in the chair opened with prair by Peter Hoyle, J.T. Hoyle elected Secretary. The roll was called. The following were present: A.M. Long, PC, W. M. Swofford, L.P, J.T. Hoyle, LP,Peter Hoyle, Exhorter.
Question first Are there any appeals? None.
2. Are there any complaints? None
3 Is there a written report from the preacher in charge of the number in state of Sunday School. _____Report A. Sunday Schools on this work have been doing good work during the past quarter there are 3 schools in operation in _______ union school. In these schools about ______ officers and scholars have been doing work for the church.
4. Report B State of the general state of the church in tolerable good on this work at present though not what it should be 11 children have been baptized the past quarter. Some indications for good being done at some point, also a fair prospect for revival meetings before the close of the year. AM Long
6 What amount have been apportioned to this charge by the distribute stewards. One hundred dollars. PE38 Bishop $1
7 Amount raised $7.74 cents. Paid to P.C. $5.7 PE $2
10 Who is elected recording steward? J. T. Hoyle
13 No vacancies
15 No applications are for licenses to preach nor exhort.
17 Have the _____preached in __________in examination of charcter have there been at ___the __________.
22 Who is elcted superindendents of Sunday Schools. Big Hill N S Jonson, Massedonia Jeremiah Smith, Horse Mountain Gap John Denton. Missionary Ridge George Stacy, Rich Mountain, Wesley Smith, Scot’s Chapel L. M. Scot.
25. None _____the place for the next quarterly meeting, appointed at Pleasant Gap
A. M. Long. PC
J. T. Hoyle Secretary
Minister of 4th quarterly conference South Mountain Mission Shelby District NC Conference ME Church South. Held at Pleasant Gap Oct 15, 1881. Rev A. M. Long PC in the ______. The conference was open with prair by Marey Clark. Marey Clark was elected Secretary. Roll called the following were present
A M Long, PC
J P Denton
M L Clark
T C. Taylor
Question 1st no appeals
2 no complaints
3 Report of Sundy Schools have done good work, this year. 2 of them is still operation
6 Report B 4 adults have been baptized
7. Children received into the church 4? Persons
10. John L Navy was licensed to exort
11 $7.65 paid to PC
23 No report
26 Pleasant Grove was appointed
Minutes of the first quarterly conference held at Massedonia Feb 25, 1882. South mt. Mission Shelby District, NC Conference ME Church South. Rev F. K._____ in the chair J. T. Hoyle elected Secretary. Roll called the following were present F K Kaylor? PC, W. M. Swofford LP J.T. Hoyle LP, Peter Hoyle, exorter, Jeremiah Smith, David Smith ____________
The assessment _______
14 The rules have not been read
19 Board of Steward, Missionary Ridge George Stacy, Jos. Bowman,
Pleasant Gap John Denton, Marene Clark, Rich Mountain Jessey Hudson, David Smith Massedonia George King, Antioch Riley York. Big Hill Eli Hoyle, John T. Hoyle
26 Missionary Ridge appointed
H K Kaylor PC
J. T. Hoyle Secretary