Reverend John BOURLAND said the prayer to start Hopkins County in 1806/7.

I am collecting a list of his marriages. If you can add to the list, my thanks.

Charles Bourland, Jr.

Groom Bride Date
Bailey, John
Sisk, Patsey
Barfield, Reading
Esom, Nancy
Bishop, Eli
Gill, Mary<
Brown, Richard
Palmer, Nancy
Brown, William P,
Bourland, Mary Lee
Burkhalve, ?
Timmons, Catherine
Campbell, Daniel
Orton, Letty
Chapel, John
Carter, Martha
Coffman, Issac
Harber, Marah
Conner, Ishman
Shepherd, Anne
Crawley, Joseph
Ramsey, Eleanor
Dyal, Martin
Redmon, Polly
Eastwood, Abraham
Merritt, Jemima
Finley, James
Dobyns, Patsey
Goard, John
Bourland, Rachel
Harvey, John
Hewlett, Anna
Henry, Alexander M
Richards, Nancy
Herrin, David
Herrin, Sally
Hibbs, Nathan
Bourland, Polly
Hooker, George
Orton, Nancy
Howell, James
Cardwell, Ester
Kuykendall, Joseph
Morrow, Betsey M
Leeper Samuel
Guyler, Nancy
Leeper, James
Ashley, Sarah
Litton, Cabb
Hawkins, Polly
Long, Cabet
Bishop, Hannah
Lovan, Joseph
Bourland, Susannah
Miller, Alexander
Bishop, Rebecca
Moore, James
Todd, Margaret
Neely, Henry
Christian, Sally
Newsom, Pearson
Davis, Mary or Nancy
O'Bryan, Thomas L.
Loving, Louisa
Quinn, Daniel C
Littleton, Sarah
Rash, James
Bone, Delilah
Robertson, John
Davis, Patsey
Rogers, Joseph
Howell, Rachel
Summers, Solomon
Earle, Mary
Taylor, James
Barker, Catherine
Timmons, Stephen
Laffoon, Sarah
Walker, John
Palmer, Charity
Wolf, Jacob
Meredith, Milly
Wyat, Charley
Tidlock, Phebe

Rev. John Bourland

John Bourland was born December 12, 1762, probably in Virginia, and died May 11, 1844 in Hopkins County. He is buried in the Old Richland Cemetery with his wife Mary Loving,whose extended family was referred to often as Lovan in Madisonville.

In the book "latchstrings" Twyla Gill Wright writes as follows: "she (Mary Gill,widow of George Gill) had heard of a circuit-riding baptist preacher who was acomfort to several families to the north, and that a small congregation wasforming to hear him preach on Grove Creek. All the countryside seemed to loveand respect that minister, Rev. John Bourland, and perhaps George Gill (Jr)found a father figure in him. He may have begun to attend preaching serviceswhich Rev. Bourland held in brush arbors around the country. Drawn by somethingmagnetic in the parson, George began to agree with his way of interpreting thescripture. Here was a vigorous farmer-preacher who was a compasssionate circuitrider, preaching God's word, performing marriages (112 from 1800 to 1848),writing wills for those who saw the end of their days approaching, andcomforting those who grieved". She goes on to speculate the possibility thatJohn Bourland married Mary's son George and Jane Carter. She continues "...(atthe feast when Hopkins county was formed)...the baptist minister, John Bourlandattended, shaking hands and visiting warmly with all. people responded withmuch respect and affection for him".

In 1793, Wilkes County NC Deed Book I, page 293 shows John Bourland sold toBarnabas Sisk 150 acres for 65 pounds on Swan Creek. This Barnabas Sisk isnext seen in 1800 in Pendleton County SC and then in 1804 in Hopkins County KYwhen he bought land along Clear Creek in Richland, near Madisonville. Thus theSisks were almost certainly close friends of the Bourlands.

By 1803 he and most of his brothers had settled in the western part of Kentucky.In 1806 Daniel Ashby decided to draft an act to create Hopkins County out ofHenderson County, KY. The act was approved and passed by the General Assemblyon December 27, 1806. The first County Court was held on May 25, 1807. "TheHeritage of Hopkins County" says "all the forefathers of many a worthy son ofHopkins county met now to start the government with the blessing of god, andprayer offered by John Bourland, minister of the gospel of the baptist faith".

The Madisonville Messenger of December 9, 1963 reports as follows: A stately157 year-old home just east of Eastview Acres on KY-85, said to have been builtin 1807 by John Bourland, who was Hopkins County's first county court clerk anda Baptist minister and a well-known public figure of his day, was being razed.The house was at one time the home of Governor Ruby Laffoon and before thatbelonged to Pete Laffoon, the acreage including what is now the EastviewEstates. The house was at one time a stage stop and was built origionally oflog with rooms 4 up and 4 down. The floors were of random width boards from 5"-8", and the dining room had traditional wainscoting on the lower walls andthere were fireplaces in several rooms. Governor Laffoon was visited by many inthis home and Mrs. Laffoon is said to have anticipated the visitors by havingconstantly on hand two large cakes and a baked country ham "just in case".Alben W. Barkley was a frequent visitor.

In March 17, 1812 he helped establish the Highland Baptist Church in UnionCounty, KY.

The Richland Baptist Church was formed on February 3, 1837. The first buildingwas built in 1838, the second in 1881 and the third in 1947.

During the 1830s the Highland Association of Baptists had become violentlyopposed to missionary effort and benevolent work, forbidding its memberchurches to perform any such work and persecuted those which did. In 1837 fourmembers of the Richland community broke away to form a new church. They wereReddick and Elizabeth O'Bryan and Isham and Sophia Slaton; who with the help oftwo ministers - John Bourland and Timothy Sisk - wrote the new churchconstitution. The first pastor was John Bourland. The first Deacons wereReddick O'Bryan and John Slaton. The first baptisms were Emeline O'Bryan andJuliet Sanders. In 1838 a tract of land was conveyed to the church on theRichland-Carbondale Road for a building. A second building was constructed in1862; the third in 1947 on Highway 70.

The Liberty Baptist Church on Highway 85 was formed on the fourth Sunday inSeptember 1840 with eight members, one ordained minister, Elder John Bourlandand licentiate Gabriel Sisk. According to the history of the Richland BaptistChurch six people lettered out of that church in 1840 to form Liberty. Theywere: William Brown and wife Polly Bourland Brown, William McLean and wifeHarriet Bourland McLean, John Woolridge and wife Nancy Bourland Woolridge.

The Salem Missionary Baptist Church was organized on September 18, 1841 by JohnBourland, moderator; Rev. Kitchen G. Hay; and William McCain, who was chosen asclerk of the council. The charter group included: Edwin Robertson, Rubin P.Loving, William Loving, Talitha Loving, Sarah Davis and Martha Loving.Ministers included: Gabriel Sisk, 1841; Prior S. Loving, 1845; John O'Bryan,1859. Redic O'Bryan was a Deacon.

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Nancy Trice

Hopkins County Kentucky