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Echoes of Effingham: Camp Meeting's Early Historian - Mr. Hinton Morgan

POSTED: July 17, 2017 4:49 p.m.

Recently I shared the story of Edwin V. Arnsdorff’s (correction on the title) death and the written document I think Mr. Hinton Morgan penned. Nathaniel Hinton Morgan was Effingham County Methodist Campmeeting’s early historian leaving a written narrative of the early years of Campmeeting. The three previous sites to the current location were detailed in his documents.

Nathaniel Hinton Morgan (b. 4-4-1867 – d. 8-29-1954) was the firstborn child of Daniel Green Morgan and Virginia L. (Shearouse) Morgan. It is of note than Green Morgan School Road is named for his father. His siblings were: Laura Alberta Morgan, Charles Harmon Morgan and Anne Elizabeth Morgan who married Gazzie Monroe Exley.

Hinton married Salome Lydia “Lomie” Seckinger (daughter of John Franklin and Rosalie (Dugger) Seckinger) on March 1, 1893. They had one son Van Talmadge Morgan born on 4-1-1901.

Son Van Morgan married Nenie Otto Weeks and had three children: Beatrice Morgan who married Julian Edwin Pace, Dorothy Marguerite Morgan who married Alton Morris Kessler and Floyd Talmadge Morgan. Van’s wife died in 1937 and he married Canara Jeffers in 1939.

Hinton’s wife Lomie’s neice Gladys Seckinger married B. Franklin Arnsdorff. His father Johnnie Arnsdorff (born 4-8-1868) lived near Hinton on Arnsdorff Loop. Hinton lost his home to fire and rebuilt a small house. The four room house sat very near Edwin and Linda Pace’s current home on Arnsdorff Loop. Edwin and Linda have a son, Hinton, named for his great grandfather.

When Hinton and Johnnie Arnsdorff were 82 they had a big birthday party written up in the paper. They shared birthdays 4 days apart in the same year and lived near each other all of their lives. Easter decorations and birthday cake graced the table.  The accompanying photo may have been this occasion. By this time Hinton was in a wheelchair or on crutches. Mary Myrick, niece of Hinton, shared the news clipping about the party.

Mary Myrick has some memories of her late uncle. She recalls that he was faithful to campmeeting and also never missed the Effingham Sunday School Convention from his birth throughout his life. He was a marshall of the convention. The marshall arranged the seating of the denominations and called the Sunday schools to be seated in order under the tabernacle. Mary also remembers her father Ed Smith and her mother picked up a list and did the grocery shopping for her Uncle Hinton at Bargain Corner in Savannah in his last years when he was no longer able to go to Savannah.

In a small journal shared by Buddy Burns his Uncle Hinton listed the following items under the title “Mrs. N. H. Morgan”: 1 coat - $20.00, 1 hat – $3.95, 1 pair of shoes - $3.75, 1 pair of stockings 1.00, 1 dress in yards – $4.95. He spent $32.95 for her clothing. Mr. Hinton ran a store. Grocery prices dated 1927 were: Can of Lard - $4.61, 50 lbs. of bacon $6.58, butter – 60 cents for 5 lb.lb., dried apples  - 20 cents, bananas 3 cents and a haircut 20 cents.

The legacy of Mr. Hinton Morgan is his love of God and family and his unique ability to see that the history and heritage of Effingham County needed to be documented and saved for generations to come. Much of the information on the Campmeeting website regarding the history is made possible today from his documentation. He is buried in the Turkey Branch Methodist Church Cemetery.

The 227th Annual Effingham County Methodist Campmeeting begins on Friday July 14, 2017 with services at 7:30 p.m. and ends with services on Wednesday night July 19 after the evening service. Services are daily at 11 am and 7:30 p.m. Sunday services begin with Sunday School at 10 a.m. before the 11 a.m. service. Special music by the Springfield UMC Praise Band begins on Sunday evening at 6:30 p.m. before the 7:30 p.m. service. Guest preacher for the services is the Rev. Dr. Steve Webb. Rev. Dr. Wayne Mosely is District Superintendent. Music will be provided by Ralph Long, Pianist and Song Leader is Jake Brown. For further information contact Whit Myers at 912-978-1500 who is Campground Trustees Chairman and Coordinator for children’s camp or Rev. Chance Ward who is Youth Camp Coordinator at 912-667-4903. For meal reservations call Maxine Wendelken at 912-826-5960.

The faith of the fathers has carried Campmeeting through the past 226 years. Services are open to the public and everyone is cordially invited to worship.

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