Tennessee's Pioneer Baptist Preachers
JESSE D. BERRY
Jesse D. Berry was born near Lee Valley, Tennessee, about the year 1815, possibly a year or two later. He made a profession of religion in young manhood and united with the Baptist Church at Richardson's Creek, Hancock County. He was ordained by this church to the "full work of the ministry," November 21, 1846, Elders Moses McGinnis, John Day and James Greenlee being the ordaining council. He served the Richardson's Creek Church as pastor from 1849 to 1860 "continuously," being at the same time pastor of a number of other churches. During his pastorate of this, his home church, he represented his church every year in the Mulberry Gap Association, being one of the most active ministers in that body. He was not only active as a pastor; he was also a popular and effective evangelist. "He had more calls as pastor and evangelist than he could fill." I note this incident as of record in the minutes of the Richardson's Creek Church: "Little War Creek Church requests the church at Richardson's Creek to grant them a part of the time of Jesse D. Berry." Reply: "If you will help us pay for a horse for him to ride, we will grant the request." This is all the information I have been able to gather in regard to a most useful minister of Jesus Christ. His family are scattered and the older people who knew him are dead. This mere fragment of a sketch is the best report I can make, at present, of a man of God who wrought nobly for his Master and served well his day and generations by the will of God. Elder Berry passed to his reward in the year 1864.
Burnett, J .J. Sketches of Tennessee's Pioneer Baptist Preachers. Nashville, Tenn.: Press of Marshall & Bruce Company, 1919.
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