The Contribution of a Mule

Even mules have made their contribution to Free Will Baptist education. In October 1921, the Cumberland Association of Tennessee authorized its Board of Education to raise $25,000 in five years. One day, after a service at Bethel FWB Church, a man (not a member of the church) approached Pastor G. W. Fambrough and told him he would like to give a mule to the drive.

The article added, “It goes without saying that Brother Fambrough was glad to accept it with thanks and said as soon as a vault big enough became empty he would deposit it in the bank. However, he has since sold the mule for $125 and deposited the money instead.”

This gem appears in a paper titled “Words of Life,” published in Nashville, Tennessee.

Women were well represented in the publication by announcements concerning Ladies’ Aid, letters, and articles. One such article, headed, “Our Debt to Womanhood,” began “Down through the ages, woman has been the civilizer of man.”

It ended with two questions: “What are you doing for the elevation of womanhood in the world of religion? Do you believe, with some of our brethren of the non-missionary persuasion, that she should be seen and not heard, or do you believe that she has a worthy place side by side, at least, with the men of the congregation?”

An article called “Who’s Big Sister Are You?” signed simply “A Woman” made the point that women were meeting the responsibility, authority, and opportunities given to them but were still considered the “weaker” sex in health reports.

The writer suggested that “Girls should be trained the same as boys. The right sort of girl is a tomboy. She enjoys running, climbing trees, and other active sports. It is girls of this sort who develop into real women… The clinging vine style of womanhood has been left in the distant past.”


About the Writer: Mary Wisehart served as chairman of the Free Will Baptist Historical Commission