Obituary of John R. Hardy
(thought to have been written by John's son, Rev. George B. Hardy)
Rev. J. R. Hardy, the subject of this sketch was born March 18, 1839, in Tippa Co. Tenn. (Note: He was actually born in Tippah Co., Miss. - GH.), Moved with his parents to Columbia Co. Ark. when he was six years old. His mother died four years later.
At the beginning of the war between the states, he enlisted as a volunteer state troop, Company A, under Captain Dockery. In the spring of 1861, after the battle of Oak Hill, Mo. his company was disbanded and honorably discharged.
He enlisted in the Confederate army under Captain Proctor in the fall of 1861 in Columbia Co. Ark. His company went to Gaines Landing, on the Mississippi River; thence to Kentucky, and from there to Alabama (Note: He may have meant Tennessee - GH). His first battle was at Fort Henry; the second at Fort Donaldson where he was captured and carried to Camp Butler, Ill. where he was held seven months, then sent to Jackson, Miss, where he was exchanged, armed and sent to Corinth, Miss. His Company then went to Port Hudson, La., and fought there for 48 days. He was wounded twice in this battle. Being captured here he was paroled and sent to Washington, Ark. in the fall of 1864.
At the close of the war, on April 20,1865 he was married to Mrs. Margaret Wheeless whose maiden name was Greer. To this union was born eight children: four boys and four girls. He moved from Columbia Co. to Nevada Co. in 1874, thence to Pike Co. in 1886. Here his wife died March 24, 1898. He was married the second time to Miss Lizzie Duke, June 17, 1903. To this union one child was born; who, with his mother, and five of the children by the first marriage, survive him.
His father and mother being Methodists, he was sprinkled in infancy. He professed faith in Christ at the age of 18, united with the Baptist Church, and was baptized in 1866. He was licensed to preach by Piney Grove Baptist church, in Nevada Co. Ark, in 1884. Was ordained to the full work of the ministry in Macedonia Baptist church, Pike Co. Ark., July 26, 1888. The presbytery that ordained him was composed of the following: Elds. L. Ortrey, D. Bright; E: McGraw.
He served churches as pastor in Pike, Hempstead, Howard, and Clark counties as long as he was able to preach. He was in the organization of Pike Co. Association and served as her first Moderator. He was a regular attendant at every associational meeting and Fifth Sunday Meeting, as long as he was able to get there. During the last few years of his life, he was too feeble to attend to his ministerial duties.
He closed his eyes to the scenes of this world January 17, 1921; being 81 years, 10 months and 29 days old. During his last sickness, he expressed strong faith in God. He was conscious up to the end, and died without a struggle. The lamp simply burned out, and he fell asleep like a tired child. He leaves to his family and friends the heritage of a life well spent in the Master's service.
We laid him to rest in the Macedonia cemetery by the side of his first wife; funeral services being conducted by Rev. W. M. Paterson.
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© 2006 Gary Hardy