Tennessee's Pioneer Baptist Preachers
James Greenlee was born in Grainger County, Tennessee, November 7, 1800; his death occurred April 24, 1857. He was ordained to the ministry, the "first Saturday" in April, 1845, after having given satisfactory proof of his gifts and his purpose to preach. He was a member of Blackwell's Branch Church, and was a messenger of his church to the Nolachucky Association about every year from 1830 to 1852; and from that date to the close of his life his name appears on the minutes as a member and messenger of the Head of Richland Church. For several years he was a missionary of the Nolachucky Association, Elders James Lacy, W. J. Reed, George Grant Taylor, Hughes Woodson Taylor and others being often associated with him in the missionary work of that body. His report to the association for the year 1851 is as follows "Labored sixty-five days," eighteen of which are "donated"; 'baptized twenty-nine persons, witnessed eighty-nine professions. spent nine days in destitute places." He received "fifty cents a day" for work not "donated." When the association met with the Antioch Church, August, fourth Thursday, 1850, Elder Greenlee preached the introductory sermon - doubtless practical and helpful discourse, from John 4:39: -Is not this the Christ?" Brother Greenlee began his ministry as an "ordained" preacher late in life, having only twelve years of life before him, but these years were given to active missionary and evangelistic work, a work that appealed to him and enlisted his every energy. He had the confidence of his brethren and of everybody who knew him, and was a useful and beloved minister of Jesus Christ in his day and generation.
Burnett, J .J. Sketches of Tennessee's Pioneer Baptist Preachers. Nashville, Tenn.: Press of Marshall & Bruce Company, 1919.
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