Mixsonian Larry

Flemington Baptist Church
The Birth of a Church

February 1884  

It was a cold winter day when James Joyce Mixson and his wife  (see #711)  met with about a dozen families for a meeting in February 1884 for the purpose of organizing a Baptist Church.  They voted and it was unanimous, and The New Mount Arnow  Baptist Church was formed.  Reverend N. A. Bailey, who also attended, was called to be the Paster with the fourth Sunday in each month chosen as the day for preaching.   The Mixson’s, like most of the families in the area were small time farmers, barely breaking even on their farms and thus had little spare money.   In October, the church pledged $15.00 to the State Missions for the following year.  They had collected $7.85 for that year so they were optimistic, doubling that for the following year.   


In April the church committee info Note: The church committee consisted of the Paster, the Deacons and elected persons for clerk and treasurer.
approved procuring funds for erecting a church building at Flemington. Several additional families joined the church.


In May the committee changed the name to the “Flemington Baptist Church”.   Over the following year a church building was constructed from trees donated by church members.  


The people of the church were very conservative at that time and disapproved of dancing and music. According to church minutes, in February, a “charges were preferred against” a member for dancing and in May, was excluded from membership.  In July another member was excluded for immoral conduct.  A committed was formed to “go talk to” another member about dancing, and later charges brought against a member for “playing the violin at dances.”  After some discussion, he was expelled for “refusing to conform to the rules of the church.”  Similar cases came up over the following years with one member asking his name be erased from the church roll “as he did not consider himself a fit subject for church membership”, his request was granted.  


On June 26th, 1889 James Kirkland Mixson (see #828) was received into the church by baptism and then in 1891 was appointed clerk pro-tem which he served off and on until October 1892 when he was appointed treasurer.   The dancing “problem” seem to get worse when in April 1893 James Mixson was appointed to a committee to be known as “Vigilant Committee” whose duty it shall be to look after disorderly members.  In February 1894 James was appointed to write the history of the church but reported in April this would be delayed due to lack of old records.  


The issue of member conduct worsened so that in July resolutions were adopted to:  

Resolved: Flemington Baptist Church in conference assembly, feeling the responsibility resting on us as Christians, condemn all such practices, being: The use of profane language. Indulgence in intoxicating liquors to excess. Indulging in games that should be regarded as dancing, (an amusement we believe to be prohibited by the Bible) and indeed anything calculated to bring reproach upon the church.  

Resolved: That we invite all Christians to unite with us in our efforts toward the purifying of the church knowing that if we are earnest and persevering in our efforts we shall win the reward offered to Christ's people: "A crown of righteousness" and the salutation "come in thou blessed of my Father."  


In October James Mixson submitted an amendment to the rule:

Deeming it the duty of all members to attend church services, we require a brother being absent on one Sunday to render an excuse at the next. Being absent two in succession without just cause, shall be considered an offense against the church; to be dealt with as may be thought best.   After some discussion, the amendment was adopted.  As a result, the Investigating Committee reported Mamie Mixson for dancing in violation of church rules and was excluded from membership.  

The Early Years