Monday, June 23, 2014

Camp Meeting, Part I

In 1916, the Rev. L.L. Nash published a book, "Recollections and Observations During a Ministry in the North Carolina Conference, Methodist Episcopal Church, South, of Forty-Three Years,."

On pages 14-15 Rev. Nash, describes a camp meeting held on Ocracoke:

" Rev. S.D. Adams, my much loved Presiding Elder, was a great help to me. He came regularly to his appointments in all kinds of weather, and gave us much encouragement by his preaching and fatherly advice. He was one of the best men I ever knew. He arranged for a camp meeting at Ocracoke in July [1873], and ordered me to go to it. It was my first camp meeting, and the novelty of it made it very interesting to me. I had never been down on the coast; that is, I had never been ashore on the coast: I had been on shipboard along the coast; but there were things ashore that were new to me, among them the millions of sand-fiddlers that scamper around everywhere. After going to bed in the preacher’s tent, the Rev. L.H. Gibbons, who was my bed-fellow, asked the preacher stationed there how high a sand-fiddler could climb? The preacher, a brother Maness, answered: “They don’t climb, they go down in the sand.” Brother Gibbons said: “I saw one on the ridge pole of this tent today.” I imagined that the sand-fiddler was crawling on me all night, and did not sleep very well.

Methodist Camp Meeting, 1819 (Library of Congress)

"We spent a week at Ocracoke, and it was a never-to-be-forgotten experience with me. There were a number of preachers present, and we had three services in the day, and one at night. Old father Henry Gray was there, and preached every day. He was a great man in prayer and exhortation; but was never considered a great preacher. But he had a reputation for having his prayers answered; veritable terror to evil doers. It is said, he would pray for the death of incorrigible sinners who would not quit their sins, and come to Christ, and the Lord would answer his prayers, and take them away. For this reason the hardest sinners feared him."

Look for the perspective of the Goldsboro Messenger about the results of this camp meeting on tomorrow's blog.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of Ocracoke's Agnes Scott, direct descendant of Agnes Scott for whom the women's college in Decatur, Georgia is named. You can read the Newsletter here:

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