Rev. W. G. McGaughey was born in Davidson County, Tennessee, January 12, 1812. He received his earliest religious impressions at the home of his childhood. When twenty-one years of age he was converted on the Randolph Camp Ground, in Tipton County, West Tennessee, and joined the Methodist Episcopal Church before the close of the meeting. He married Miss Harriet Dill, March 5th, 1834. He was licensed to exhort at Holly Springs, Mississippi, about 1843, under Rev. Wm. McMahon. The ensuing fall he received license as a Local Preacher. He was Bible Agent of the American Bible Society several years before and after he obtained license to exhort and preach, and as such traveled over a large portion of N. Mississippi. He was elected to Deacon’s Orders and ordained by Bishop Joshua Soule, Nov. 28, 1847; to Elder’s Orders, and ordained by Bishop James O. Andrews Dec. 5, 1852. He was admitted on trial in Louisiana Conference at Bastrop Dec. 1855, and was appointed to Swan Lake; the next year to Swan Lake and Pecan Grove. He was appointed to Lake Providence in 1858, to Carroll Circuit in 1859 and 1860, to Tensas and Elizabeth Chapel 1861 and 1862, Tensas Mission in 1863, in 1864 to Wesley, Tensas and Jordan Chapel. In 1865 and 1866 he was placed on the Tensas District; 1867, 1868 and 1869 on the Lake Providence District. In 1870 he was sent to Carroll Circuit and in 1871 he received his last appointment on earth, that of Lake Providence. Death came and bore him hence, however, to the green fields of eternal life before he has even entered this field of labor.
He conversed very sparingly during the whole of his last sickness, perhaps from the peculiar nature of his disease, which was said to be pneumonia. He requested prayer at several different times, and the reading of the Holy Scriptures in connection therewith. The last lesson he ever heard read from the Sacred Volume was the forty-second Psalm, selected by himself and commencing: “As the heart panteth after the waterbrooks so panteth my soul after thee, O, God. My soul thirsteth for God, even for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God.” While this Psalm was being read, his whole soul appeared to tear itself away from the shadows of earth and fix itself resignedly upon the realities of eternity. Prayer and a part of a favorite hymn followed this lesson. After this he gradually grew weaker, and his mind wandered unceasingly, till Thursday, January 26th, 6 P.M., when he calmly closed his eyes forever upon all earthly scenes.
His remains were deposited near the top of a high mound, a short distance from Floyd, where they still rest, in the cold, solemn sleep of the grave. He has left to the care of the Church his deeply afflicted family, who need all your sympathy and love, as well as God’s grace, to sustain them in the midst of their untold sorrow.
His death is universally regretted on the Lake Providence District, not only by the Church, but by the world, who esteemed him very highly.
Brother McGaughey was regarded as a man of remarkably fine sense. He had marked traits of character in his pulpit efforts and social intercourse. He possessed a warm, tender, loving heart, and a high sense of Christian honor. He was an excellent preacher of the simple Gospel of Christ, and his preaching did good, particularly in protracted efforts. He was a man of great faith in God, and unswerving in the discharge of his ministerial duties. Many passages in his life might be adduced to exhibit his unshaken reliance in the gracious promises of the Master, his untiring love for the church, and his zeal for the souls of men.
|Source: Journal Louisiana Conference Methodist Episcopal Church, South, 1871|