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Day at Church in Rich Patch, Virginia, in the 1800s

There are several written accounts about church services in the Rich Patch area of Alleghany County, Virginia, in the 1800s. A letter from 1842 states that on Sunday the service had begun early. Several men spoke throughout the day with the preaching stopping only long enough for a noon and supper meal. It states that several prayer circles were formed during the day. Prayer circles are known to have been used by them as a tool for healing the sick. Another account is a dexcription of a church service in the 1860s.

"Now when we was growing up those folks over in Alleghany County knowed how to have them church. Lots of them folks was tongues speakers and church often go on most the day with us stopping for a meal and then back to the church meeting. Some of them was dunkers and every summer we have one Sunday for dunking. That was always an all day meeting and many times go on til it was too dark to be seeing. They take a body and get them in the water and put them under three times but I can't recall why they done it three times. Some of them was healers and people bring them sick folks from all over them parts and they put this oil on their heads and have what they ca;lls the laying of hands and many times if that person had him the faith they was healed. Some of them women had them church scarves and they put them on themselves when they get to church and take them back off when they leaves but when they prays some them women put them back on. Course now most the younger ones not do that anymore and I never understand me why not but not my place. Me and sis gots us one but then we never wears it round here cause we never seen nobody with one but Miss Beulah but we uses it at home sometimes. Miss Amanda that live over there had her what they call the gift of prophecy and she could see things that not happened yet. That not what they called the gift of the eye like Miss Sara had her but I don't remember how she say they was different but she say they was." 

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to explore herein.
Genealogies, Court records (deeds, wills etc.)
obituaries, public notices, newspaper articles
WPA National reports, Federal claims, letters,
petigrees, historic timetables, personal histories,
editorial comments, and many, many vintage
photographs of family members and of
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