Friday, May 10, 2013


THOMAS MINERVA MORTON: No minister in the history of the Association performed a greater work than Elder T. M. Morton, even though it was of short duration. Brother Morton was born near Ceralvo, Ohio County, Kentucky, on February 4, 1856. His parents were Thomas R. and Nancy Rhodes Morton. In early life he had the privilege of grade school and labored several years as a farmer and lumber man. In the latter mentioned business he was successful to a great extent. He was converted in 1872 under the ministry of Elder W. P. Bennett and was baptized into the fellowship of Walton's Creek Baptist Church, in Ohio County. For many years he fought against the call to preach but Divine Providence overruled that those years were not lost to the cause of Christ. While he followed other pursuits in this particular period, he developed that business capacity which God used later in making him a leader in church building enterprises and other financial affairs. God finally had his way with our brother and in 1892 the church into whose fellowship he was baptized granted him a license to preach and on February 14, 1896, ordained him to the ministry. Bro. John A. Bennett in writing his History of Walton's Creek Church for One Hundred Years, in 1914, has this to say concerning the conspicuous event: "How little the church knew of the importance of this event. It meant the sending forth into his great life-work the man who, as church builder, pastor and evangelist, grew into the most successful and efficient worker the Green River section has known in the past half-century." Elders D. J. K. Maddox, W. P. Bennett, E. H. Maddox, and John A. Bennett served on his ordaining council. From the very beginning of his ministry he was one of the most efficient evangelistic pastors to arise in many generations. He ranked with Elders J. S. Coleman and J M. Peay in this respect though his ministry was not nearly so long as theirs. 

Brother Morton served the following churches during his brief ministry of a little over sixteen years: Buck Creek 1896-1902 and 1903- 1906; Oak Grove (Utica) 1897-1903 ; Island, 1899-1901; Mt. Liberty 1900- 1901; Livermore 1902-1904; Pleasant Grove 1902-1909; Richland 1906; Sugar Grove 1906-1909; South Hampton 1907-1909; Panther Creek 1908-1909; all in this Association. He also served the Render, Nelsons Creek, and Sandy Creek Churches in neighboring Associations. During his ministry new buildings were erected at Island and Pleasant Grove. We have been informed that he pastored the church at Dawson Springs and built a new building there while laboring under the auspices of the State Mission Board. He was to have preached the Annual Sermon before the General Association in 1910 but death intervened. He died at his home in Livermore, Kentucky, on June 11, 1909. His body was laid to rest in the Livermore cemetery. Brother Morton was noted for his zeal, courage, and liberality. He literally wore himself out preaching in revivals and in the pastorate. He married Miss Laura Rowe in 1883. No children were born to this union. Tom Morton performed a lasting work in the Daviess County Association through the power of God and his works still follow him. 

"A HISTORY OF THE DAVIESS-McLEAN BAPTIST ASSOCIATION IN KENTUCKY, 1844-1943" by Wendell H. Rone. Probably published in 1944 by Messenger Job Printing Co., Inc., Owensboro, Kentucky, pp. 341-342.

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