February 2020  
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Building:  In January 1941 the church voted to raise the building and construct a basement and build Sunday School rooms in it.  The deacons constituted the building committee. (1)

Pastor:  Rev. Homer Couch 1941-1944.  Rev. Couch had a great ministry,......warmness and appreciation for his leadership in a difficult time.  He was the pastor....during WWII.  Franklin D. Roosevelt was serving our country as President, while Rev. Couch was serving the families of the New Liberty church and community.  Johnson said, "These were trying days, as the war was in progress.  Many of the young men and women had gone either into military service or had left home to work at defense jobs."  (2)

Bill Holcombe was a young member of NLBC when the war began. He said he membered going to church and hearing all the men talking about the war.  They were all concerned about what was gong on, and the church was always full because the community spiritual concern was as high as ever.  Bill went on to serve in the Army himself in that very war.  Even though a terrible World War was going on, the church had work to do.  They had to carry on as usual.  He was a great counselor and inspiration during the troubled time, and the church was blessed with great leaders such as Oscar Cox, Claud Jones, Joe Johnson, Northern McKinney and other. (2)

After many years of discussion as to whether to build a new building or remodel the exist one, the church voted in January 1941 to cover the building with bricks, raise it,and dig a basement for Sunday School rooms. Until this time , the church held its Sunday School in the sanctuary with classes separated by curtains.  Some of the teacher talked too loudly, however, so they really needed regular  Sunday School rooms.  This remodeling would also close in the church's two side doors. The building which was built in 1883 had a door on each side and it has been said by many that in the early part of the century, older men entered one side and sat up; front in the "amen corner," while older women would enter the other side and sit up front together.  Those two sections were where the instruments are today.  Everyone else sat in eh pews and entered form the front doors.  When the building was bricked, those two doors were closed in, and the old custom had come to and end. (2)

Even during such a tribulous time, they decided this remodeling was what they wanted and needed to do;  however, they had to raise some money so the actual work didn't take place until 1944.  Rev. Couch was still the pastor, and he led the church in Sunday School and service for several months in the old Marydell School building on Hwy 414.  It was an adjustment for the congregation but something they had to do during the remodeling of the church.  When the work was completed, everyone was proud. the church was brick veneered and now had a basement full of nice Sunday School rooms.  Rev Couch completed his work in late 1944.....(2)

Other great leaders of that day included Mrs. Irene Holcombe (mother of Bill), and "Daddy" Christopher.  Mrs. Holcombe, better known as "Ma" Holcombe, led in the church's Young Women's Association and held several meetings in her home.  Most every woman today who remembers her talks fondly of how good a woman she was.  'Ma" Holcombe was the sister of Rev. Floyd McAuley's wife Floree.  "Daddy" Christopher was a wonder inspiration to the younger folks of that day."


Building:  The old building was raised, a basement built under it,, and the whole building was brick veneered. (1)


Pastor:  Rev John Tollison served from 1945-1946.  He was  a student at North Greenville Junior College, but he served his church well.  He was a great preacher.  His was the task of helping service men and their families became adjusted after the war years.  During his ministry the weekly bulletin was stared. (1)

One of his Bible professors, Dr. J.T. Gillespie, recommended him to NLBC, and he preached his trail sermon in January 1945.   (2)


Building:  In March 1948, the church voted to build a parsonage. (1)

The parsonage was built in 1948, and the Beards were the first to live in it, which was one year before they left.  One of New Liberty's members, Mrs. Chastain, donated the land for the parsonage under an oral agreement that a parsonage must always be there.  The church was 100 years old and now finally had its own home for its pastors to live in.  Several church members cut timber off their own property and donated it to help build the parsonage.  Bill Holcombe owned a saw mill and cut much of the lumber that was donated for and used in building it..............The parsonage is one-half mile south of the church on the same road, North Highway 25. (2)

Pastor:  Rev C. Hartzog Board was called and served in 1947-1949.  During his ministry the beautiful pastorium was built.  It is situated about eight-tenths of a smile from the church. He planned his visitation and published in the weekly bulletin just what road he would be visiting on a certain day of the week. His people knew when to expect him and whore to find him when they needled him. (1)

Rev Hartzog Beard, from North Greenville Junior College....recommended to the church by Rev. Sethie P. Hester.....was single when he became pastor and married his wife shortly after, Mrs. Calla McKinney clipped their wedding announcement form the newspaper and kept it all these years.....on June 24....at Double Springs Baptist Church of Taylors....1948....following a wedding rip .....made their home in the church parsonage....(2)..

General Information:  In February 1948, the church voted to have a monthly business conference to be held the fist Sunday in each month. (1)


Building:  The church was painted, and the pastorium was built. (1)

Pastor:  Rev John Tollison was recalled in 1949 and served until 1951.  During this portion of his ministry to the church, the pastorium was paid for and the mortgage was burned.  The rotation system for deacons was instituted.  During this ministry, the church experienced one of the greatest revivals in its history, at  which time their were about 100 decisions for the Lord. (1)

....time of the famous Los Angelos Crusade when Billy Graham began his evangelistic ministry.....He, his wife Velma, and two daughters, were loved genuinely by the NLBC congregation. (2)

General Information:  In June 1949, the church voted to but a church bus at a cost of $350. (1)

The Church Bus:  In October 1949, the church brought a bus for $350.  It was used to carry older members who couldn't drive to church. They also used it as an outreach tool to  bring others in form the community, and that mission was accomplished with great success.  Genobia Hall remembers the old bus ministry.  She sad,..."Rev. Wingard Odom drove the church bus some...they brought in a lot of people..also it was great for a few older people who did not drive.  Amy Raines and Haskell Stroud were courting and they really enjoyed the transportation for their dates to church.  They were probably about 60 years old at the time."  It was a great ministry, but the church eventually sold the bus because they were having behavioral problems with some of the children that were brought in. (2)

Cemetery Upkeep:  The cemetery was handled twice a year by convicts in a chain gang.  Armed guards would carefully watch then as they cleaned and cut the grass.  Several of the church's ladies would cook baskets full of food for the convicts, and they would eat on tables rigged up by church men (2)


Building:  In September, 1950, the church voted to build a baptistery. (1)

General Information:  In October 1951, Mrs. Jamie Talley gave the money for a painting to be placed in the baptistery.  This is a most beautiful painting, picturing the Lord Jesus sitting on the side of the Jordan River. When the pole is filled with water, it appears that the river is flowing into the pool.  The church appreciates this gift by Mrs Tally and will long cherish it.  The painting was done by Mrs. Faro. (1)

The Church Parsonage Paid Off:  A loan made for the purpose of building the pastorium was paid off and the mortgages burned. (1)

.......the note was burned.  Tollison invited Rev. Hartzog Beard back for the event. (2)


The Great Revival of 1951:  In March 1951, Rev Tollison called his friend, Rev. Fay Lanford to preach a revival, and according to many, it was possibly the greatest revival NLBC ever had.  It lasted two weeks, and 87 people got saved.  Tollison said he's never seen anything like in in all his years as a minister.  Then a few days later, he baptized over 50 of those new converts, including his daughters Nancy and Anne. (2)

The new baptistery was used by other churches, too.  Several churches in the community didn't have one, so Rev. Tollison and the church allowed them to come in and use theirs. (2)

Tollison's ministry was a great one.  Mr. Claud Jones was his music director, and Jones' daughter Donna Jones Skelton shared a humorous story with me involving Tollison and his father.  she said' "I remember the story my father would tell about when Rev. John Tollison was there.  They were having a chain of prayer and Daddy was holding Rev. Tollison's hand.  The harder Daddy would pray, the harder he would squeeze rev.  Tollison's hand.  His ring was cutting his hand, and Rev. Tollison wold say amen, hoping he would end the prayer,but Daddy would pray even hardier."  (2)

Oscar Daniel....joined NLBC in 1952 after moving here from Arkansas.  He told me that three men were teaching Sunday School who left a lasting impression on him.  They were Joe Johnson, Northern McKinney and Melvin Brookshire. (2)

Betty J. Blackwell played the piano during this time.  She was only 11 when she started playing in the church, and here daddy Oscar Cox, sat on the bench with her while she played. (2)

In was sad for many when Rev. Tollison left, but the Lord led him to leave in late 1951.  Elizabeth Funk said her father Henry was never more saddened than when he left to begin another work. (2)

General Information:  In September 1951, the church adopted the rotation system for deacons (1)


Building:  Parking lot was paved. (1)

Pastor:  Rev Ray L. Lanford, who was at the preacher for the revival of the year before, was called as pastor in 1952.  During his ministry, many  others were added to the Lord, and the church.  The parking lot in front of the church was paved.  Many of the present members admired him for his humility.  He was a great preacher of the Word of God, and was well  loved by his people. (1)


Pastor:  Rev Charles C.  Thomas served the church in 1953-1954.  It was said of him that he was a brilliant servant of the Lord. He was a forceful preacher.  Being a young man, he appealed to the youth of the church and to the youth in the state.  During his ministry new furniture was placed in the auditorium, and the sanctuary was painted.  A new rug was placed on the floor of the sanctuary; rest rooms were installed, and the other improvements made to the physical plant of the church, including a new oil-burning furnace. (1)


Building:  The church was painted, new pews installed, new coverings were placed on the floor in the auditorium, new pulpit furniture was installed, a new oil furnace was installed, and other necessary repairs were completed.  (1)


Membership:  397!  (1)

Sunday School;  177 enrolled with an average attendance of 111! (1)

Children and Youth Ministries:  There was a large group of youth and children, and Genobia Cox (before she married Don Hall) had a large part in working with them.  Calla McKinney remembered a Sunday School class she taught in 1955; it was the Primary Class (ages 6-8).  Here pupils were Shirley Capps, George McKinney, Wayne Hembree, Ray Raines, Yvonne Dodson, Cheryl Dodson, Gail Robinson, Nancy Benson, Alice Sheppard, Larry Hawkins, Wayne Duncan, Jin Johnson, Paul Robertson, Doris Hines, Alvin Gallowya, Jewell Free, Ann Good, and Judy Grant,  Irene Hembree was the assistant teacher.  It certainly was a big class, but that's the way all the classes were in those days. (2)

Vacation Bible School:  In the 1950's NLBC always had a big Bible School every year.  In 1955 the Vacation Bible School was held June 9-12 and an average of around 93 attended each night, most in the junior age group.  Mrs. Fannie Sentell filled huge tubs with ice and passed out lemonade and kool-aid to the children. (2)

Finances:  The budget was $12,002.55. 

Pastor:  Rev. J Albert Johnson, the compiler of this history, began his ministry here. (1)

He's the one who wrote "A Short History of the New Liberty Baptist Church". (marked with (1)). His book was published in 1956. (2)


WMU:  There are two circles in the Society and all the youth organizations have been formed.  This year there is a Sunbeam Band, Junior and Intermediate Girls Auxiliary, Yong Woman's Auxiliary, junior and Intermediate Royal Ambassadors (combined).  The Royal Ambassadors will soon be under the sponsorship of the Baptist Brotherhood, and no longer sponsored by the woman's Missionary Union. (1)


Youth Pastor:  NLBC was also involved with a lot of youth revivals.  Old records show that the church had a youth pastor in May 1975.  He was paid $25 per week, and his name was Dick Flowers,.  Genobia Hall remembers the youth ministry very well.  She said, "We observed youth week at NLBC quite a few times in the 50's and had youth revivals, fellowships and outings." (2)

New Members and Great Leaders and Great Revival:  The church had another great spirit-filled revival April 14-21, 1957.  Fifteen joined the church tat week, thirteen of them by baptism.  The preacher for the revival was former pastor, Rev. Fay Lanford.  NLBC was fortunate to gain a lot of new members during the Johnson ministry.  Some who joined were Ruby Bowen, Frances Cox, Mary Daniel, George McKinney, Fannie Sentell, Annabelle Hines, Vollie Good, L.B. "Boots" McCarson and Roy Ivey.  The church had a log of great leaders including James Hembree, Franck Benson, Genobia Cox, Frank Childress, Cecil McJunkin, Melvin Brookshire, and again many other. (2)

Rudy Cox Ordained as a Deacon:  Rudy Cox was ordained as a deacon in 1957 by Rev Johnson.  Dwight Eisenhower was the President of or country in those years.....television hadn't been around long, and modern appliances were making life much easier.