History of the Baptist Churches 
of  Woodford County, Illinois

By  A.F.Marshall,  A.B. (Shurtleff College 1879),
who has been closely identified with the history of the Baptist Churches of this county for more than fifty years, 1913

The Benson Baptist Church.

There was a Sunday school organized in Benson in Coleman's hall, April 26th, 1874. Dr. D. W. Siemens was chosen superintendent. This continued in connection with the Clayton Baptist church from 1874 to 1883. August 19th, 1882, a council was called to organize a separate church, the same to be known as the Benson Baptist church. Rev. A. J. Ammerman moderator and John Fry, secretary. It was decided to solicit funds for a church. B. F. Zinser, D. Davis and Samuel Peterson were chosen a building committee. John Fry, D. Davis and Joseph Tallyn were chosen trustees. The property known as the Matthew Kolb property was bought as a site for the church. The building being completed it was dedicated July 22nd, 1883, free from debt, costing about $2300.

On the 25th day of March, 1888, the church was finally organized as a separate church, having been up to that time, connected with the Clayton church. The following 27 persons had been granted letters from the Clayton church on February 27th, 1888, to organize the Benson Baptist church: D. Davis, John Fry, Joseph Tallyn, Sarah Tallyn, Charles Tallyn, B. F. Zinser, Marcia Davis, A. L. Fry, S. W. Woltzen, May B. Fry, Susana Fry, Susana Lee, Newton O. Tallyn, Irene Tallyn, Lizzie Fry, Amelia Fry, Carrie S. Tallyn, Lottie Lee, F. N. Tallyn, E. W. Tallyn, A. H. Tallyn, Ella F. Tallyn, Alice A. Tallyn, Emma Smilie, Lizzie Kindig and Hannah Parks.

At a meeting held at Benson March 2nd, 1888, with E. C. Cady acting as moderator and D. Davis as secretary, it was organized as a separate church, and at the same meeting B. F. Zinser, John Fry and Joseph Tallyn were elected deacons and Joseph Tallyn, John Fry and D. Davis trustees. During the year 1889 Rev. Gunther served the church part of the time. November 8th, 1891, Brother F. A. Gregory held a series of meetings that continued until November 19th, 1891, and did much good. On July 9th, 1890, Rev. Morewood was chosen to supply the church for a while. The next pastor was Rev. W. L. Jones, who began his labors November 28th, 1891. He acted as pastor until August 27th, 1899. Rev. J. S. Marple became pastor October 1st, 1899. He held a series of meetings resulting in much good. He served as pastor until August 28th, 1900. Rev. Spencer began his labor as pastor December 9th, 1900, and remained until May 25th, 1902. Rev. F. M. Johnson was called August 31st, 1902. About January 25th, 1903, a series of meetings was begun, he being assisted by Rev. Fuller, of El Paso, and Dr. Simmons, of Peoria. Brother Ford- was supplying the church about May 2nd, 1906. Brother J. B. Brown supplied the church a short time in 1907. After having been supplied by several preachers, a call was extended to Brother Krause, who commenced on the 15th of August, 1907. Brother J. M. Wood assisted him to hold a meeting in the fall of 1908. Elder Krause served as pastor until August 20th, 1909. Brother H. Weddington became pastor in the fall of 1909. Rev. Tharp received a call December 20th, 1911, and is still pastor. The officers at present are: Pastor, Rev. M. El more Tharp; deacons, A. H. Tallyn, George Nellinger, F. C. Tucker; trustees, C. A. Tallyn, Paul H. Davison, E. M. Tallyn; treasurer, F. C. Tucker; clerk, Alpha M. Tallyn. Present membership 85.

Transcribed and formatted by D. Whitesell for Woodford County Genealogy Trails
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