Our old time country preachers have passed, but not
forgotten. If you mention the name of Preacher J. R. "Rufe"
Rhodes in any community around here, someone will say
that he used to preach at his church.
The churches elected a preacher every year, for one
year. They held services on week-ends, Saturdays and Sundays,
once a month.
Mr. Rhodes was a farmer and lived near Melrose in
Polk County. He always had a good horse. He rode horseback
to all his churches. He usually had four churches.
Some would be several miles away, some in Greenville
County, SC, some in Henderson and Polk Counties in
North Carolina. Everybody loved Preacher Rhodes.
His son, Grady Rhodes, who lives near Saluda, told me
Ilis daddy was elected at Mountain Hill Church which is
located on top of Glass Rock in Greenville County.
Everybody told him if they were he they would not take that
church, for the people there were very bad.
Grady said his daddy told them that was the place
where he wanted to preach. Grady said when his daddy
first went there the people would bring their guns and
stack them in the back corner of the church - just in case.
Mr. Rhodes preached at Glassy Rock for several years.
He would arrive on Saturday, spend the night, preach on
Sunday and eat dinner with some family and return home
Sunday night. He worked on his farm 5 days a week. He
also preached at Glassy Mountain Church, and Oak Grove
near Landrum, SC. He got about $3.00 collection at each
church. That was about $12.00 a month.
They always had revivals in August, one week at each
church. No night meetings. Preaching was at 11 a.m. and
2 p.m. In those days people traveled in wagons or on