Friday, June 4, 2010

Robert Edge by Elder Belnap Part 8

[Below are some random observations Hyrum Belap made about Robert Edge. Hyrum was responsible for telling the most detailed stories about this mysterious preacher. He wrote years after the fact and for the purpose of telling it to an audience. Like most stories, his tale was more detailed than the earlier versions]

There were several beautiful sketches drawn by Mr. Edge while in this locality. The one which particularly attracted my attention was a beautiful arch drawn upon the front leaf of a large Bible owned by Mr. Sirenous Reed. Directly up the center of this arch were very neatly placed seven steps, on the foot of which was written, beginning at the bottom the following words: Virtue, Knowledge, Temperance, Patience, Godliness, Brotherly Kindness and Charity. Just beneath the bow of the arch was placed the figure of a young man who had just climbed this narrow stairway, kneeling upon the top step receiving a beautiful crown from the hands of an angel.

In conversation with some of them, Mr. Edge stated that he once lived in the land of Texas and had a wife and one child, when he began his missionary labor.He also informed them that he had a partner whom he very frequently travelled with by the name of Cob, whom he had not seen since leaving the State of Arkansas. In speaking of himself he said, “I am not worthy of but one of the nail prints in my hands.”

Some time after his departure, one of this little band was casually turning the leaves of the large Bible owned by S. Reed and discovered the 31st verse of the 24th Chapter of Matthew, inclosed in brackets, inside of which was written the name of Robert Edge.
And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Matthew 24:31
He wrote his people two letters of encouragement, one while in the State of Georgia and the other while in South Carolina. In the last one he spoke some of visiting England. A few months later I met Pres. Morgan in the city of Nashville, who, while in conversation regarding this preacher, Edge, showed me a letter that he received some time previous with no name signed to it. As far as I was able to judge between the writings left in Henderson County by Mr. Edge and this letter, they were penciled by the same hand.

Every one of the 21 followers who fasted for the full three days were baptized. Late in the fall of the same year Hailey’s Creek Branch, save one soul, emigrated to San Jose, Colorado.

Elder Belnap and Elder Carver once passed thru Howville and stayed with Squire Long. He was very sociable and treated us kindly. As Mr. Long was an old settler and an influential gentleman we made some inquiries about Mr. Edge. He laughed and said he remembered when a crazy preacher came down on a rock some two years ago. The rock bursted and let him down on a sand hill. Told of his fasting and many other amusing stories. Said some believed he was a Mormon. Whoever he was he was certainly the shrewdest preacher that had been thru this country.

I don't know who Robert Edge was. But it is pretty clear Hyrum Belnap believed he was no ordinary mortal man.

1 comment:

The Tanners said...

The Sirenious Reed mentioned in this article is my great great grandfather.