December 3, 2012 Rotogram: 22

Home School concert

The Starkville Home School Cooperative Choir returns for a mini-concert under the direction of Dr. Angie Riffell.

Next Week: Oktibbeha County Sheriff

Oktibbeha County Sheriff Steve Gladney will discuss the major tasks and current status of the sheriff’s department.

 Ring Those Bells

We ring the Salvation Army Christmas bells at WalMart again next week. Ringers are needed from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Friday, December 14. Sign the volunteer sheet on the secretary’s check-in table.

Between the LionsReading Schedule

Our pre-school literacy project needs a reader for December 20. Let Hal Rowland know if you can help. Substitutes also are needed on call.

We read to two classes at the Emerson Family Resource Center at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, and at Brickfire and First Presbyterian at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday.

This week’s readers are:

  • Tuesday, 12/04 Brent Fountain and Nancy Walsh
  • Thursday, 12/06··· Bart Harris and Andy Gaston

Next week’s readers are:

  • 12/11····· Carrie-Beth Randall and Nancy Walsh
  • 12/13    Sarah Fratesi and Linda Karen Smith

Next Year’s Youth Exchange

Starkville High School Senior Kristina Berch has been tapped for the RYE program in 2013-2014. Her destination has not been locked in.

Meeting Notes

  • Vice President Brent offered condolences to Frank Chiles in the loss of his mother-in-law.
  • President Debra reminded members that we need volunteers for Salvation Army bell ringing at WalMart from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Friday, December 14.

For the Record—November 26

Invocation and Pledge:         Bob Whiteside

Attendance:                                       50.85%

Present — 93 (32 exempt, 1 honorary)

Absent — 80 (13 exempt, 10 honorary)

Makeup reported: Mike Hainsey in Columbus.

Guests: Visiting Rotarian was Gerry De Gabriele from Australia. Guests of members were Paige Laws and Linda Forbus of Jack Forbus, and Sam Hardin of Carey Hardin. Guests of the Club were Giulia Martinoli, Rotary Youth Exchange student, and Kasper Eriksen, former RYE student.

Santa 2012 webSanta Arrives — Although the Starkville Christmas parade was postponed by a day, Santa still arrived in style on November 27 aboard the float prepared by our newest members.





Mayhew Mission: European Settlement in Oktibbeha County

Nov. 26 — In a stand of oaks about a mile north of Old West Point Road in northeast Oktibbeha County, the Mayhew Mission cemetery is all that remains of the area’s earliest European—American settlement.

The mission, founded in 1821, lasted just over a decade, but was the key to the area’s development.

Rotarian Jack Forbus reviewed the mission’s  history as part of the observance of Starkville’s 175th anniversary this year.

“I sort of backed into the project only because of curiosity about how First Presbyterian Church got to where it is today,” said Forbus.

The mission church was the ancestor of today’s FPC congregation.

The early years of the United States were marked by a population explosion as immigrants from Europe flooded to the new nation. From 1830 to 1860, U.S. population doubled. The only direction that they could go was west.

The Louisiana Purchase gave the young nation room to grow, but there were significant security issues. The War of 1812 sealed the backdoor at New Orleans where the United States no longer had to worry about being invaded in the middle of the country up the Mississippi River.

In the early 19th Century, the Indians wanted education, the church wanted to evangelize, and the government needed to resettle new citizens. This unlikely coalition spurred development.

As the country advanced economically and socially, Christian missions were being established. In 1801, Presbyterians and Congregationalists formed a union to provide missionaries in the “Old West” beyond the Appalachian Mountains and east of the Mississippi River.

Cyrus Kingsbury, sent from Massachusetts to the Cherokee in the Southeast, founded Brainerd Mission near Chickamauga, Ga., in 1817. In the following year he plied the Ohio River to the Mississippi River and up the Yazoo River. His group established Elliott, Miss., between Winona and Grenada. The state had formed only six months before the community.

Although intended as the Choctaw mission headquarters, it was on the outer fringes of their land. So, they asked that other stations be established nearer the center of their lands for convenient access.

Kingsbury scouted locations at French Camp and Pigeon Roost along the Natchez Trace. He finally chose what was to be Mayhew Mission in the Tibbee Creek watershed near the newly developing communities of Plymouth and Columbus along the Tombigbee River.

The mission began building in 1820. Records are inconclusive, but there were up to 17 buildings, ten of which were houses. The Presbyterian church was constituted on May 6, 1821 with eight members

Among the white settlers were a doctor, a machinist and a farmer. The women of the group taught sewing and other home crafts.

Kingsbury and his wife Sarah moved from Elliott in 1821, but tragedy struck the next year. Only a month after giving birth to their second son, she died. Her grave is among the eight identified at the mission site

By 1826, the mission was fully operable and the headquarters shifted to Mayhew Mission from Elliott. A presbytery was formed that stretched into Alabama, to north Mississippi and down near where Meridian later was founded. Kingsbury was elected moderator

Although the natives had been U.S. allies in the War of 1812, the new nation’s need for more land instigated a drive to acquire the 16 million acres occupied by about 25,000 Choctaws. A series of negotiations culminated in the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit and the removal of most of them to Oklahoma on the Trail of Tears in 1831-32.

Kingsbury and his boys followed and continued their ministry. He maintained a vigorous work until his death at the age of 85.

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