Crowson, R. M.



R. M. Crowson, the son of Richard and Sarah Crowson, was born in Madison County, Ala., Dec. 20, 1814, died of dropsy in Sparta, Bienville Parish, La., April 19, 1885. He was converted and joined the Methodist Church at a camp meeting in the fall of 1830 and licensed to preach in 1833; was admitted on trial in the Alabama Conference in December of the same year and appointed to the Leaf River District and to the Talapoosa Mission in 1834. He was received into full connection December 1835, and ordained deacon by Bishop Soule. In 1836 he was appointed to the Manamarger Mission in Eastern Mississippi. Brother Crowson was twice married, the first time to Miss Francis McGown, the second to Miss M. A. Wilson, who still survives him, with four children, three sons and one daughter. In 1837 he served the Tuscaloosa Circuit; 1838 the Kemper Circuit, after which he was local four years on account of financial embarrassments. He was re-admitted into the Mississippi Conference in 1844 and traveled the Greensboro Circuit; 1845 Monroe Circuit; 1846 the Monroe Colored Mission; 1847 and 1848 the Red River Circuit; 1849 the Minden Circuit; 1850 the De Arbornne Circuit. He then located for two years, at the end of which time he was again re-admitted, and in 1855-56 traveled the Farmerville Circuit; 1856 the Vernon Circuit; 1858 and 1859 the Sparta Circuit; 1860 the Evergreen Circuit; 1861 and 1862 the Ouachita Circuit. He served nine months of the year 1862 as Chaplain in the Confederate army; 1863 the Bastrop Circuit; 1864 the Evergreen Circuit; 1865 and 1866 Bienville Circuit; 1868 the Sparta Circuit; 1869 and 1870 Ringgold Circuit; and in 1872 he was again located at his own request; in 1877 he was re-admitted and served the Webster Circuit; 1878 to 1880 he served the Sparta Circuit; 1881 and 1882 the Sabine Circuit; in 1883 he was superannuated.
Brother Crowson was not what the world calls a great preacher. This distinction he never sought, but he did seek to be a meek follower of the Lord Jesus, so that his life might say to all, follow me as I follow Christ. And this aspiration of his soul seems to have been gratified, for I have never known a man who seemed to have more of the confidence of the brethren whom he served. A few hours after his death, as I walked down the street, this remark was made: “It will be a long time before another such a man as Uncle Crowson walks our streets.” At times his preaching seemed to be imbued by the same spirit that touched the hearts of the disciples as they walked by the way. So did his congregation often feel as he talked of the love of God. Brother Crowson’s power in song was often wonderful. He was one of the sweet singers of Israel, and we have no doubt but what many who were enraptured by his melodious voice here have joined in the songs of angels above. Brother Crowson, though 72 years of age, said he was never confined to his bed by sickness a whole day in his life until about fifteen days before his death, and assigned as the reason for this that he always prayed for his body as well as the soul, believing that God was the preserver of both. I visited him often during his illness, and he always expressed perfect peace and confidence in the hope of blessed immortality. He stated he had no desire to get well, since he had lived his allotted time, and to get up was only to get down again, and that he was ready and he desired to go. I often read the Scripture to him during his last days, and it was often a season of mutual rejoicing, especially when I would read the parting words of the Savior to his disciples, “Let not your hearts be troubled. In my father’s house are many mansions;” with his feeble voice almost hushed in death, he would exclaim, “Bless the Lord, my Savior, for such precious encouragement.” A few days before his death, after receiving the sacrament, he exhorted his family and friends to meet him in Heaven. He could not forget his brethren in the ministry, hence among his last words were, “I have fought a good fight. Tell my brethren I have kept the faith. I have finished my course.” Thus died Brother Crowson in sight of Heaven.
Source: Journal Louisiana Conference Methodist Episcopal Church, South, 1885

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