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Shepherd
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Helen
Mine
Son of Father
Groceryman
Long Ago Told
Exit
Devil's Hwy
Ma Cinderella
To My Sons
Went Away

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As I know Him
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Aurora
SHEPHRD of HILLS
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Boats, Docks
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Marvel Cave
Matt's Cabn RP
Matt's Cabn tnt

Matt, Mollie, etc

Mutton,Dewey
Uncle Ike RP
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DAN MATTHEWS
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EYES

Forest Home
HBW PLACES
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Movies
(Introduction)
1916, Eyes

1919, Shepherd
1924, Man
1924, Mine
1925, Son Father 
1925. Brian K
1926, Barb W
1928, Shepherd
(1928, Lights)
1930, Eyes
1935, When Man
1936,  Matthews
1936, The Mine
1936, Wild Brian
1937, West  Gold
1937, Out West
1937, Secret Vly
1937, Californian
1941, Shepherd
1949, Massacre
1959, Shep (TV)
1964, Shepherd

Locations
New York
Pierce City
Pittsburg
Kansas City
Lebanon
Branson
Redlands
El Centro
Tucson
Los Angeles
Escondido
San Diego

In Depth
Kinkead
Markham Review

Mike O'Brien
Tucson Library

UCLA Library

Princeton Library

Indiana U. Libr.

E Clampus Vitus
Bittersweet
Manuscripts

Sales

 


Pierce City, Missouri


"Harold  Bell Wright Church, Peirce City, Mo."

     As illustrated on the postcard above (Courtesy Dave Hadsell), the name of the town was spelled, "Peirce City" until the early 1920's.  The First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in this little Missouri town was Harold Bell Wright’s first pastorate. Though no exact records are available, it appears that Wright began preaching in Pierce City in the summer of 1896, became the full-time pastor during the winter of 1896-1897, and left in late 1897 when he accepted a call to pastor the First Christian Church in Pittsburg, Kansas. Residents of Pierce City still proudly claim Wright as part of their history. 

     In March, 2000, Quentin Burke, president of the Harold Bell Wright society, reported: “The edifice contains the organ and several pews used by the congregation.  On the walls are decorations dating back to 1896, when Wright rode a horse some 25 miles every Sunday to preach here.  These include a clock in use at that time, a big church key which was for the lock on the original door, and a picture of a local schoolteacher who was reportedly enamored of the young preacher.” [Gazette, Vol. 8, No 3]

     In Inspiration Tower, at The Shepherd of the Hills Farm in Branson, is a painting by Harold Bell Wright that was displayed for over 20 years on the wall behind the pulpit of the little Pierce City church. But that painting -- of a river in Ohio -- never belonged to the church. Before the painting was hung in the church, Wright had given it to a member of the church, a Mr. John W. Taylor. Later Wright asked Taylor if he would loan it to the church, which he did. When the church closed in the 1920s the painting went to Taylor's widow. It remained in the Taylor family for several generations. I do not know how or when it went to Inspiration Tower.

     By late 2000 the city library had been moved to new quarters in a brand new building in the main section of town, and the city had begun to turn the historic little church into a real Harold Bell Wright Museum. In the summer of 2003, an excellent collection of all Harold Bell Wright's books and many related materials was donated to the museum, making it a good destination for at least regional researchers. The library is open by appointment only, so check the museum website and contact the director before going:  hbwmuseuminpcmo@aol.com

     In 2003, on May 4, nearly the entire town of Pierce City was destroyed by a tornado. No damage was done to the Harold Bell Wright Museum, but the new city library, where the books from the old church were moved a couple years earlier, was totally destroyed.


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This Harold Bell Wright web site is written and produced by Gerry Chudleigh with the help of many friends.
Copyright © 2000-May, 2011 by Gerry Chudleigh
Last updated 05/26/11