John H. DANCY residing in the Second District of Haywood County, was born in October, 1831, in Williamson County, and is the son of Isaac Dancy, who was born August 7, 1783, in Virginia, but moved at an early date to Tennessee, locating at Spring Hill, and was captain of a militia company of Williamson and Maury Counties. He moved to Haywood County in 1831, and located on the farm where our subject now lives, and established a postoffice called Dancy, that was moved in 1841¹ to Dancyville, still retaining the name. The first Methodist Church in this part of Tennessee, was built about 200 yards from his dwelling, and was used as a schoolhouse. John Dancy's mother's maiden named was Mary LAMB; she was born in Virginia, July 19, 1793, and died September 6, 1859. Our subject remained on the farm until his father's death, in August, 1863. February 27, 1856, he married Louisa KERR, daughter of Francis B. and Ann R. Kerr; the father was born February 27, 1801, in South Carolina, and died in Fayette County in 1885; her mother was born in Sumner County, and died August 30, 1873. Mrs. Dancy was born November 5, 1834, and they have ten children: John William, Mary F. (Wife of V. M. PATTON), Ella (wife of Absalom RUDD), Albert S., Alexander, Isaac Bradley, Lula, Lillie B., Emma R. and James H. Mr. Dancy is worth about $7,000 which he has accumulated since the war. With his wife he belongs to the Methodist Episcopal Church South; his educational advantages were limited when he was young, but he has always manifested a warm interest in the schools of the county. He is now a Democrat, but before the war was an old-line Whig.
¹This date appears to be in error. The U.S.
Postal Service listings for postmasters indicates Isaac Dancy was Postmaster
of the Dancyville Post Office, called 'Dancey's' from 1833 to 1840. Ed
I greatly appreciate the assistance of Mrs. Reese Moses, Haywood County's premier genealogist and family history researcher at the Genealogy Room, of the Elma Ross Public Library, Brownville, Tennessee, for providing access to the 1877 Goodspeed History of Haywood County and other research assistance. jkd
See 1869 Diary
In the publication, "A History Of Joyner's Campground - 1893-1993" by Sarah Rhea McNamee, 1993, Miss Sarah documented the find of a Pulpit built by John Henry Dancy in 1873. Miss Sarah listed the dedication when John Henry presented the Pulpit to Asbury Church (written on the left side of the inside front panel) and the dedication when the Church Trustees donated the Pulpit to Joyner's Campground (written on the right side of the inside front panel) when Asbury closed.
In seeing the Pulpit I felt both exuberance and disappointment. Exuberance at being able to see and touch at least a part of the lectern built by my great-grandfather 126 years ago and some disappointment in that it had been totally encased, on the outside, when it was repaired. This is not a criticism of the craftsman that did the repair. His work is excellent and I know he had to do what he felt necessary to preserve the piece. He took great pains to leave the inside front upper panel open so the hand written presentations could be be seen and read.
From what I can see of the Pulpit, from the bottom, it is constructed from native walnut, with the panels joined to posts by mortise and tendon joinery.
I hope the day may come, when the leaders at Joyner's Campground, will consider un-encasing the Pulpit, with the idea of displaying the piece at an area or county library or museum.
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Posted June 1999
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