The ‘Yankee Mohawk’
We can only stand in amazement at what the ministry of the old time Separate Baptist preachers around the time of the founding of our nation produced. Surely the soil must have been prepared for the gospel plow by those who had gone before them. Few of their number had a solid education but they did have something far more important and that was dedication to the God of the Bible. One of them was Abraham Marshall, the son of Daniel and Martha from Connecticut. They had ministered among the Mohawk Indians before moving to Sandy Creek, N.C. to work with Shubal Stearns. Daniel founded Baptist churches throughout the Carolinas and Virginia. In 1771 he became the leading Baptist pastor in Georgia, where he served for thirteen years. After his death, Abraham succeeded him as pastor of the Kiokee Baptist church though having limited formal training. His diary reveals an amazing grasp of the English language. He used to say that he was “born a Yankee and raised a Mohawk.” However he was a much balanced pastor who loved his people and had a powerful and compelling voice. His son Jabez wrote that his father baptized, married, and buried six thousand people, and Judge C.C. Pittman wrote in the Augusta, (Ga.) Chronicle that Abraham Marshall led in the organization of thirty-nine churches. He was also a great evangelist. At one time he travelled by horseback the 1100 miles to CT and preached all the way there and back. He saw crowds as high as 3500 at a time. At the legislature in CT, he preached to 1500. On a second trip he stopped at John Waller’s home in Virginia for a rest and on the way back proposed to his daughter, married her that night, and they left the next day on their steeds for the 500 mile honeymoon trip back to Georgia. Abraham died in 1819.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon adapted from: This Day in Baptist History III (David L. Cummins), pp. 188-189.