Tennessee Records Repository

Davidson Co. TN

Genealogical Abstracts from Reported Deaths
The Southwestern Christian Advocate

copyright, Jonathan K. T. Smith, 2003

transcribed by Laurel Baty

Prefatory Remarks

There having been an increase in the population of the southern and western sections of the United States, among the membership of the Methodist Episcopal Church, the need and demand for an official church newspaper/periodical prompted the establishment of the SOUTH WESTERN CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE (which evolved into an easier SOUTHWESTERN CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE) at the General Conference of the church in 1836; its editor was the Reverend Thomas Springfield.

Four years later, the Reverend John Berry McFerrin accepted the editorship of the SWCA; at the first General Conference of the re-structured Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in 1848, the newspaper was named the NASHVILLE CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, the name by which it would be known for many years (although in 1858 the prefix Nashville came off its masthead but as it was still published and distributed from Nashville, Tennessee the old prefix became a convenient fixture).

The newspaper had a wide variety of religious, secular and literary coverage, everything from church district reports to comments on politics, general literary selections and one of the most popular features was the obituary segment, those and notices of deaths of almost anyone and everyone. The newspaper was often overwhelmed with obituaries submitted by relatives, friends and other well-wishers of the recently deceased.

The present writer/abstracter is gratefully indebted to Ms Laurel Baty, Columbia, Maryland for having loaned him the microfilm rolls on which the SWCAs were contained and from which he gleaned the genealogical information. She has consistently placed these Methodist ADVOCATEs abstracts on the Internet for use by the broad, general public. Ms Reece Moses, dean of Haywood County, Tennessee genealogists has continued her gracious sharing of relevant information used to annotate some of the abstracts. Mr.

Joe Caldwell, Liberty Library, Evanston, Ill.; Ms Jennifer Woodruff and Ms Jocelyn Rubinetti, Methodist Library, Drew University, Madison, New Jersey lent special help with difficultly smeared microfilm (referring to the hard copies in their collections). Dr. Pam Dennis, director, and Ms Jackie Wood, acquisition librarian and conscientious Memphis Conference archivist, Lambuth University Library, Jackson, Tennessee, were helpful in providing additional film from that university's library collection. The staff of the Jackson- Madison County Library, Jackson, Tennessee (Tennessee Room), were their consistently helpful assisters as well. David L. Donahue, Parsons, Tennessee has throughout the publication of this series been patiently assisting in getting the abstracts on the internet.

Jonathan Kennon Thompson Smith
Jackson, Tennessee
Spring 2003