|Historic Byrd's Chapel
United Methodist Church
|Byrd's Chapel UMC's first services were held in
about 1820, after Sherrod and Zelfa Rouse Byrd
came to the area, sometime between 1810-1820.
Rev. Sherrod Byrd was a Methodist circuit rider, as
was his nephew, Rev. John Ira Ellis Byrd, who
began holding services in a log building not far from
the location of the present church, on land donated
by Peter and Emily Stewart Harvey, near what is
now Hwy. 43. The current sanctuary is the 4th
since the church's inception. Byrd's Chapel
cemetery is believed to be the oldest in Pearl River
County. The original cemetery, adjoining the first
structure, was either destroyed or simply faded into
obscurity after the congregation's move in the
1850's, across present-day Hwy. 43. The second
building was used from the 1850's until the 1870's,
when it was destroyed by fire. The next building
was in use until it was damaged by a tornado in
1934. It was shortly after that that the current
sanctuary was constructed, on land, also, donated
by Peter and Emily Stewart Harvey. Timbers from
the church built in the 1870's was used in the
construction of this building.
Besides Byrd, some of the names associated with
the early history of Byrd's Chapel were: Harvey,
Tate and Mitchell.
To read about the "Battle of Harvey" visit:
"The Notorious Copeland Gang."
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|Thanks to Pam Brister for this info.