“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Rocky Gap in Bland County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

A Noted Preacher

A Noted Preacher Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, May 28, 2011
1. A Noted Preacher Marker
Inscription. William Elbert Munsey was born a few miles east in the mountains of Giles (present-day Bland) County on 13 July 1833. Despite little formal schooling, Munsey possessed an insatiable appetite for knowledge. He entered the ministry of the Methodist Church in 1855, preached his first sermon near here, and extended his ministry to several states. Regarded by many who heard him as the greatest Methodist preacher of his day, Munsey was poetic by nature, and his unrivaled word pictures held large audiences spellbound. His kindness extended to giving his own shoes and coat to a Confederate soldier who had none. Munsey died on 23 Oct. 1877.
Erected 1999 by Department of Historic Resources. (Marker Number KC-2.)
Location. 37° 12.922′ N, 81° 5.658′ W. Marker is near Rocky Gap, Virginia, in Bland County. Marker is at the intersection of North Scenic Highway (U.S. 52) and Interstate 77, on the right when traveling south on North Scenic Highway. Touch for map. It is at the exit, on the west side of the highway. Marker is in this post office area: Rocky Gap VA 24366, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Crooked Road (approx. 0.8 miles
William Elbert Munsey (1833–1877) image. Click for full size.
2. William Elbert Munsey (1833–1877)
Illustration on the frontispiece of the 1879 book Sermons and Lectures, Second Edition, by William Elbert Munsey, D.D. “late of the Holston Conference, M. K. Church South,”
away); Andrew Davidson (approx. 6.8 miles away in West Virginia); Bluefield (approx. 7.9 miles away in West Virginia); Elizabeth Kee (approx. 7.9 miles away in West Virginia); West Virginia / Mercer County (approx. 8 miles away in West Virginia); Bland (approx. 8.1 miles away); Bluefield College (approx. 8.6 miles away); Bluefield State Teacher’s College (approx. 8.6 miles away in West Virginia).
More about this marker. This marker replaces an earlier marker that had gone missing with the same number titled “A Great Preacher” which read, “Some miles to the east was born William Elbert Munsey, July 13, 1833, and near here he preached his first sermon. Ordained to the Methodist ministry in 1855, Munsey was a noted preacher in several States. He died, October 23, 1877.”
Also see . . .  Sermons and Lectures by William Elbert Munsey, D.D. From the Introduction: “His methods were the reverse of the rhetorician’s—at the highest point of an extended, highly-wrought passage his words became the most familiar, and his finish was as natural as it was exquisite in the grace of homeliest speech. He had his audience prepared in a few moments by this simplicity of style for a new flight. No one could preach more sublimely upon the cross. On such occasions no one who ever heard him can forget the power
A Noted Preacher Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, May 28, 2011
3. A Noted Preacher Marker
and pathos of his delineation: the darkness of the sixth hour, the rocking mount, the rising dead, the vail rent, the bleeding Victim.

“It is questionable to my mind if there lived any greater master of an audience, either in this country or England. Where he had longest preached there the largest crowds thronged to hear him. This must be considered the final test of oratory. At Marion, in Virginia, during the session of the Holston Conference, where he had often preached and was well-known, one might have walked upon the heads of the audience. Flumes were constructed, and ladies were shot by them into the house through its windows; the altar was filled with persons standing, and three individuals had seated themselves for the service, one on each side of the bookboard and one directly under it in front, in a half-bent posture.”
—Excerpt from letter to the editor printed in the New Orleans Christian Advocate on his death. (Submitted on July 20, 2011.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 20, 2011, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 456 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on July 20, 2011, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.
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