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Miles Chapel C.M.E., Ripley TN & Paducah KY

I have recently made some interesting discoveries about my family's connection with the Miles Chapel C.M.E. Churches in both Ripley Tennessee and Paducah Kentucky.

A portion of my family migrated from Ripley to Paducah in about 1908

I first found the Carson family connection in Paducah Ky, the church was established in about 1910. My GGGgrandparents are listed as trustees and one Rufus Carson's name is engraved on the churches corner stone.

Recently, while investigating the family's migration, I came upon a book titled Lauderdale County the Earliest Times. In the book are a couple of pages dedicated to the "Colored Churches" Well to my surprise there was a Miles Chapel listed as the second AA church in Ripley established in 1873.

Needless to say, my heart was racing when I came upon the names Richard Bryn and Smith Carson.. my distant grandfathers! Both men were listed as trustees of the church and are named on the deed in 1876!! (Smith was also one of the person that started the Paducah chapter)

Shortly after picking myself off the floor, I decided to call the church to see if there were any "elders" that could shed some light on the history of the church and my family's connection. I found Mrs. Annie Lee Wheeler, she has been a member of the church since birth. She had a lot of information for me as she rattled off names of my family members and then revealed that she too was related to the Carson's. We are connected through her mother and one of my distant grandparents.

She was just as excited to hear from me,stating that she is the only living member of her family line left. I seemed to have "found" her at the right time, because not only is she a wealth of knowledge about the AA history of Ripley but she wants me keep in contact with her since we are family.. and believe me I will no matter how distant the connection, Our blood IS the same.

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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