Saturday, August 30, 2008

John A. Bowman

A native of Tennessee - born in 1813 and married in 1830 - John A. Bowman united with the Brethren about 1832. Soon after he moved to Sullivan County, Tennessee where he became one of the leaders of the newly-organized Pleasant Hill congregation and was called to ministry in 1842. He became a noted preacher and was called to preach over a wide area in Tennessee, North Carolina, and Virginia. He also preached in non-Brethren churches on occasion. One sermon preached in a Baptist church on temperate life was published. The sermon advocated moderation not only in the use of "intoxicating drinks" but also in dress, eating, sleeping, conversation, exercise, and behavior.

In the late 1850s, he became involved in a court case as the executor of an estate, which led to his expulsion from the church and the development of a separate group. (Read more tomorrow)

In late August or early September, 1863, he was interrupted by a group of Confederates who had come to seize horses from his barn. According to a letter written by B.F. Moomaw shortly after the event: A man was discovered about to take his riding horse. He approached toward him and when coming pretty near, the man ordered him not to approach but John still advanced expostulating with him and finally took hold of the horse when he shot him through the abdomen and then clave his skull with the butt of the gun. So ends his eventful life and it is thought will end his church.

And thus, Bowman became one of the Brethren victims of the Civil War.

Source: The Brethren Encyclopedia