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A Report of FBC's Charges Against J. R. Graves
From the Tennessee Baptist, 1858


      [A blurred short quotation by J. A. James.]
      We have a telegraphic dispatch from the Sen. Editor [J.R.G.], to the effect that he will not be here until after the time for his appointment at Gallatin on the 3rd Sunday in this month. - D. [A.C. Dayton]

      THE CHARGES MADE. - At a meeting of the First Baptist Church, held on Wednesday the 8th of September, after some other business had been transacted, the Pastor nodded to Bro. C. A. Fuller, who rose, and after some preliminary remarks, read a document charging Elder J. R. Graves with "grossly immoral and unchristian conduct." We held our breath to hear what the specifications would be. Could it be possible, we asked ourself, that there was some secret sin about to be brought to light - some terrible atrocity all this time hidden from the world? What then was our surprise to learn that this grossly immoral and unchristian conduct consisted in that he had slandered Eld. R. B. C. Howell in the Tennessee Baptist; that he had endeavored to produce alienation of feeling between Eld. Howell and A. C. Dayton; that he had endeavored to produce difficulties between Elder Howell and four deacons of his church; and that he had slandered several ministers - naming Dawson, Duncan, Tustin, Waller, Mat[thew] Hillsman and R. Fuller, of Baltimore. The testimony referred to, was the articles published in the Baptist Register and Tennessee Baptist, and had long been before the world. What the result will be, we cannot tell. We presume the charges will be made public as soon as possible. There was a motion made to lay them upon the table ["lay them upon the table" was a term often used in associational meetings, when a circular letter was placed on the communion table for reading by the attendees before it was officially voted on to be printed and distributed - jd], which the Pastor decided must be put [to a vote - jd] without discussion. Satisfied, however, that the brother presenting the charges, was only representing Elder Howell, the Pastor, and seeing that three of the four charges were named upon supposed offences against himself, a brother ventured to ask the Pastor whether the scriptural steps had been taken according to the xviii [18th] chap. of Matthew. Elder Howell replied that "the Pastor is not here to be interrogated", or words to that effect.

      A motion was passed to commence the trial on the night of September 21.


[From the Tennessee Baptist, September 11, 1858, p. 2; via CD edition from microfilm. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]

From theTennessee Baptist, September 18 edition: An Update
More from theTennessee Baptist, September 25

More on J. R. Graves
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