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History Of Vernon Church of Christ

Vernon, Alabama

 

The congregation first began meeting in the old Lamar County High School building in 1917. Mr. J. A. Johnson was principal of the school (1917-1920). This building was in the same location of the present high school. Those meeting together were Mrs. J. A. (Orpha) Hankins and Mr. J. A. Johnson and their children. For several years Brother Johnson, being the only man, led singing, led prayer, taught the class and waited on the Lordís table. Sister Hankins baked the bread and prepared the table.

About 1919, the group began using a building that was owned by the Freewill Baptist group. This building was on the corner of First Street SE and First Ave. SE. In 1919 Mr. and Mrs. George Jordan moved to Vernon and started worshipping with the Church. Soon thereafter Mr. and Mrs. Alec Johnson began worshiping in Vernon. In 192, the old elementary school building was purchased for $1000.00 This building was located on the present site of the church. The building was modified on the first floor to create one large room for meeting purposes. The congregation was able to pay half of the money for acquiring the building and the rest was borrowed from Mr. John Wheeler who worshipped with the Bethel congregation. The loan was signed by: Orpha B. Hankins, J. A. Johnson and George Jordan. When the congregation repaid part of the loan, Brother Wheeler marked the note paid.

Mr. and Mrs. Murray Duke moved to Vernon in 1924 and began worshipping with the congregation.

Some of the first preachers to come and hold meetings were: A. D. Dyes, Gus Nichols, Gus Dunn and Charlie Wheeler, brother of John Wheeler.

The old elementary building was used as a meeting place for the Church until 1947, when it was torn down, and new building erected. A wing was added in 1962 and the entrance was remodeled in 1964. The present auditorium seating 400 was built in `1969 and changed the main entrance of the building to fact First Street South East.

Preachers who have been employed by the church have been: M. L. sexton, G. R. Dobbs, Maurice Land, Alan Barber, Wesley Thompson, Wade Johnson, Norman Parrish, Jack Black, Fred Webb, Tom Childers, Steve Short, and Larry Kilpatrick.

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