Sketches Of

Tennessee's Pioneer Baptist Preachers


(pages 95 - 96)

Henry Edward Byerley was born in Grainger County, Tennessee, August 29, 1849.  He was a son of James and Elizabeth (Scaggs) Byerley.  His parents moved to Knox County when young Byerley was only about a year and a half old.  Here he was brought up to farm life, attending the common district schools in his youth and finishing his education at Walnut Grove Academy and the University of Tennessee.  He professed religion at Murphy's Chapel in August , 1865, and was baptized the second Sabbath in November following.  June 7, 1879, he was ordained to the work of the ministry by a presbytery composed of H. C. Hamstead, P. A. Morton and J. A. Robinson.   He was a successful farmer and a good pastor.  By close study of the Scriptures he became a "workman with no reason to be ashamed, knowing how, rightly to handle the word of truth."

January 30, 1873, he was married to Martha A. Luttrell, Elder T. W. L. George performing the ceremony.  To this union were born ten children, six of them dying in infancy.  Four are still living, a son and three daughters.  The son, Charles Spurgeon, lives at the old Byerley homestead.  One of the daughters lives in Florida, another in Alabama, the third in Knoxville, Tennessee.  All have families and all are Baptists.

Brother Byerley passed to his reward April 17, 1890.  His companion died June 10, 1915, in Jacksonville, Florida.  Both were interred in the burial ground of Union Church, Knox County.  A handsome monument marks the last resting place of Elder Byerley, erected to his memory by the following churches, which he faithfully served as pastor: Little Flat Creek, Graveston, Beaver Dam, Sharon, Union, Stock Creek.  The monument is also inscribed with these lines:

"Beautiful toiler, thy work is done;
Beautiful soul into glory gone;
Beautiful life with its crown all won
God giveth thee rest."


Burnett, J .J.  Sketches of  Tennessee's Pioneer Baptist Preachers.  Nashville, Tenn.:  Press of Marshall & Bruce Company, 1919.


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