It was likely in 1879 that Father was sent to Farenville. This was a short move and was made with wagons. I quite well remember coming in sight of the little church and parsonage, and of Holy jumping off the wagon and saying he was going to pick out his room. There was little chance, however, for room choosing in the Farenville parsonage. It was a four room cottage, stood rather close to the road, with a board fence across the front of the yard and garden. The church on one side stood on the corner. The house contained rather a large living room, one small bed room, and one larger bed room, a lean to was built across one end of the building rather than along the back. In this was the narrow but long dining room and kitchen, with small wood shed and summer kitchen at the back.
Here in this cottage was the old Methodist song put to action many times: “Our grand old quarterly meetings were to all the brethern dear, Just like four green oasis in the desert of the year. The people flocked for miles around, and Mother took a score, and after meeting we would pray, then sleep upon the floor.”
We had two beds in the larger bed room, one in the small room, and two beds set up in the living room, but it was not uncommon to have Mother make up beds along each side of the living room, on the floor. There was a thick bed of straw on the floor and the carpet tacked and stretched tight over this. People who came from a distance to the quarterly meetings and the revival meeting would bring both food and bedding.
Brother and Sister Harrington were quite likely to come to these gatherings. Steve Moore, the converted drunk, with his family also often came. Alfred McComb and his family were frequenters. Bro. McComb could surely pray fire down from heaven. Steve Moore could convince men by his testimony that “Jesus is mighty to save and strong to deliver.” Mary Harrington was a most excellent alter worker. Also it was no unusual thing for her to prance about the church when victory came, her face radiant with the glory of God. Some battles were surely fought clear through to victory there in old Farrenville church.
What was Farrenville like, do you ask. Well, it could not be called a town in my time of remembering. The State road passed through, and in the days of the stage coach before the R.R. came that way, a big country tavern had been built on a corner. No, not right on the corner across from the church, but North a block. Here was the tavern built on the corner of a large farm. In my day this was occupied in part by a farmer and his family. Most of the rooms were unoccupied, the bar room etc. A large porch ran along the entire front of the tavern and some times we children were allowed to run and play here and alga, play hide and seek in the empty rooms.
There were a number of buildings along the block which one could see had been stores. Some had their windows boarded up. Others had families living there. There were a number of small comfortable houses also, most of which were occupied. You see, when the railroad came through the country, it missed Farrenville by a mile.
Clio was just a mile West of Farrenville F.M. Church and parsonage and was quite a bustleing business center even when I was a small child. Part of our congregation came from Clio and a good part of the people came from farm homes East, West, North, South.
I quite well remember Brother and Sister Peek. They were both soundly converted in Father’s meetings. Then there was Brother and Sister Greenly, Brother and Sister Mitts—two families of these, Brother and Sister Van Patten. It was at Van Pattens where I as a child was chased and nearly scared to death by a flock of white geese.
The Barett home will not soon be forgotten. This family was converted in Father’s and Mother’s meetings. Elmer preached the gospel for many years. Charlie %% ent home to heaven early in life.
Then there was the Fletchers, and also a Bro. Moore. Moores lived about one mile, maybe not that far North of the church. They had a lovely comfortable farm imam.’ were fairly well to do. He was class leader, S.S. Sup., janitor and what not. He got discouraged as the people Seemed to let the responsibilities drop too much on him and finalh insisted Father drop his name. Father pleaded, urged and prayed. Finally Father said “Bro. Moore, shall I say . . dropped and gone to the devil?” “No indeed” said Moore. “I am not going to backslide. I like you, Bro. Haight, and I’ll still stand by you in a quiet way, but I’m just going to let the rest carry the load awhile and see how it feels.” Well of course Xloore backslid and his family at least went to the devil.
A good many very interesting things occured at Farrenville. Many, no doubt, I don’t remember at all.