As America moved West following the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1849 many a family dynasty grew from a simple AD in the eastern newspapers, "wife wanted." By the time uncle Nathan began his ministry and the Concho River country of West Texas some of those marriages were reaching their golden wedding anniversaries.
Deacon Hawkins was one of those in the good pastor rode out to visit the Hawkins is and congratulate them on their long marriage. As they set under a tree sipping lemonade uncle Nathan commented, "Brother Hawkins, you certainly got yourself a wonderful wife."
"I sure agree with you there preacher, I can tell you there are sometimes it's just as hard as it can be to keep from telling her I love her."
Down the road brother Jones had a very different experience on his golden wedding day. Breakfast was on the table when he walked into the kitchen and his wife, Mary Belle sat on one side of the table clearly agitated. At his appearance she said, "this has been the most terrible 50 years I can imagine. I wish I had not married you-I wish I had never met you! And I think it is only fair that I tell you I have been praying to the Lord to take one of us home."
Well the good brother stood there mouth agape clearly surprised by what he had just heard. Then Mary Belle began speaking again, "I think it's only fair to tell you that when he does, I'm going to Dallas and live with my sister.
Visiting the new families who settled in the Concho River Valley was one of his favorite things on one occasion as he rode up to the newly built half day out a little girl was standing outside of the door and greeted the pastor with a smile. "How long have you folks been here," he asked. "About six weeks," the child replied. "Have you found the church yet," the pastor asked. "No sir Mr." the youngster replied, "Mama says Jesus hadn't got to Texas yet and she is not sure he is coming."
Nathaniel D. Bullock was born February 4, 1857. he was the son of Samuel and Permelia Bullock of Wynn Parish Louisiana. Shortly after the American Civil War and after the death of his mother, Samuel brought the younger children of the family and settle down in Steep Hollow Community in Brazo's County near Bryan, Texas.
In 1878 on December 12 he married Margaret W Collins, A marriage that was to last over 58 years. He was my great uncle, my grandfather's brother.I met him only once, when I was about six years old. Our are Bullock family had a firm tradition of an annual reunion. In 1938 the reunion was held on the banks of the Concho River near San Angelo, Texas where Uncle Nathan made his home.
Nathan began preaching and Brazos County in 1883, and was ordained to the full gospel ministry and April 1887. In 1893 he and Margaret had began their ministry in the Concho River country , where he served as an itinerant, circuit riding Baptist preacher. During the next 43 years he pastored 32 Baptist churches, in six different counties, and traveled as far as 60 miles in his buggy many times to regular preaching appointments. There are many stories about my uncle Nathan.
Some are even true!