Friday, February 15, 2013

This Week in Texas Methodist History February 17

Henderson Palmer, First Preacher Licensed in Texas Dies February 17, 1869

Henderson Palmer, the first Methodist preacher licensed in Texas and an original member of the Texas Annual Conference died on February 17, 1869.

This is the way that Macum Phelan wrote about the passing of Henderson Palmer.

Henderson D. Palmer had died February 17, 1869.  Palmer holds a distinct place in Texas Methodist history as he is believed to have been the first Methodist preacher licensed in Texas.  He received his license at Box's Fort Nacogdoches County, July 7, 1838 from Littleton Fowler, presiding elder of the Texas district of the Mississippi Conference.  He was born in Alabama in 1812; ;joined the Methodist church in 1829, and was appointed a class leader.  He attended LaGrange College, at Huntsville, Alabama.  He came to Texas during the days of the republic, and engaged in teaching at Nacogdoches.  After his license to preache, he was admitted into the Mississippi Conference in 1839 (one year before a conference was organized in Texas), and was appointed to Crockett circuit.  He labored some thirty years on circuits in East Texas, locating one time, but was soon re-admitted and in 1866 he took the superannuate relationship. 

Palmer was actually born in Hickman County, Tennessee, rather than Alabama, and Box’s Fort is now in Houston County, later created from Nacogdoches County. Palmer married Jane Wilson in Nacogdoches in 1843.  The couple had three sons, one of whom was named Littleton Fowler Palmer in honor of the man who licensed him to preach.  He was interred in the Old Paron Cemetery between Hawkins and Quitman on the Upshur-Wood County Line.  


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