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I. J. Roberts
Missionary to China

      The following is from "Life of W. C. Buck"; a portion written by Buck's daughter:

      One thing that soon made the Baptist church and its pastor well and favorably known was his efforts in behalf of the boatmen and river operatives, and the meetings held in the church for that purpose. During this year, also (he met) Rev. I. J. Roberts, whose offer of himself as missionary to China and his landed estate valued at twenty five thousand dollars to be used for his support had been declined by the foreign board at Boston. He (Roberts) came to Louisville and applied to Elder Buck to take charge of his estate and let him go to China as a missionary. Accordingly, a society was organized, "The Roberts Fund and China Mission Society of China (Kentucky)." He (Roberts) was set apart in the First Church of Louisville to that mission and left America the same year. He prohibited the board from selling the property before the spring of 1837, but, also, the terrible monetary crash came upon the country. The lands of Mississippi became worthless, the board had no funds in their hands to pay taxes, and the land was ultimately sold to pay those taxes. This ended the Roberts Fund. The result of I. J. Robert's labors in China will only be known in eternity.

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