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From: "david Owings" <>
Subject: [OWEN] Rev. Richard Owings - Part 1
Date: Mon, 21 Apr 2008 10:16:17 -0500

The Rev. Richard Owings was born November 13th, 1738 in St. Paul's Parish, Baltimore County, Maryland the second child and son of Joshua Owings and Mary Cockey of Cockeysville, Maryland. Rev. Owings fell ill and died within days of October 7th, 1786 in Leesburg, Loudoun County, Virginia while ministering there and is buried in the Old Stone Methodist Church cemetery.

Richard was raised in the Harmony Hall plantation home, a cruciform structure with thick walls and narrow slits built to withstand Indian assaults in Garrison Forest - so named for the Potomac Rangers stone garrison built there in 1695. Richard married Rachel, said to be his first cousin Rachel Owings but her parents have not been demonstrated. Rachel Owings and had five children: George, John, Joshua, Mary, and Catherine.

George was among the earliest of Missouri pioneers being settled on the Missouri River in Warren County in 1816. George came to Missouri in a cart pulled by two horses - a Methodist himself - he named his Missouri homestead Ebenezer. George Owings raised a very large family of twenty-four children by two marriages.

Joshua Owings lived most of his life in Bourbon County, Kentucky and later in Simpson and Warren County. Rev. Richard Owings grandson, the Rev. Richard Owings by son Joshua was a Baptist minister in Kentucky. His son, the Rev. Benjamin Holcomb Owings was ordained in 1839.

The Rev. Richard Owings older brother Capt. John Cockey Owings was a prominent land speculator in Virginia and Kentucky. Capt. Owings son, Col. Thomas Deye Cockey Owings founded Owingsville, in Bath County, Kentucky. Col. Owings was appointed commander of the U.S. 28th infantry regiment during the War of 1812 and fought with Commodore Perry on the Great Lakes. On January 18th, 1836, Stephen Austin accepted his offer to bring two regiments of Kentuckians to the Texas Revolution.

Rev. Richard Owings grandparents, Capt. Richard and Rachel Robert Owen/Owings. Family lore of Capt. Richard Owen is that he was Welsh - possibly a Quaker but no evidence is found to support this. One clue that does remain is the plantation his son Samuel built which he named "Plem Llomoln" which is of the Welsh language (Plynlimmon in English). Various explanations exist for the meaning of this phrase - among them the Montgomeryshire mountain with five summits that sits at the head waters of the rivers Severn and Rheidol. The term "plem" meaning "pump" such as applied to milling hydraulics.

Capt. Richard and Rachel Owings children where: Rachel, Catherine, Richard, Henry, Lewis, John, Ruth, Robert, Samuel and Joshua. Capt. Richard Owings was a Captain of Potomac Indian Rangers and had quickly established himself in the Maryland planter gentry class growing primarily tobacco for shipment to England. Their children attended the Church of England with the exception of Robert Owings who held Catholic Mass in his home in secret as early as 1721 with Jesuit Father Greaton. Robert later established Conewago Chapel in Adams County, Pennsylvania.

Richard Owings began serving in Baltimore's St. Paul's vestry in 1722. Samuel from 1735-1738 and 1744-45. Several of the children attended St. Paul before ".a chapel of ease was constructed for the forest inhabitants." The chapel which sits on Joshua Owings old plantation, became St. Thomas in Garrison Forest, Baltimore County. Rev. Owings was instrumental in establishing the society and consequent Stone Chapel in Baltimore County a year before his death in 1785.

In 1827, Rev. Owings younger sister Marcella Owings Worthington established the first Methodist Sunday School in the United States - "Marcella Chapel" in Granite, Maryland. Contemporary historian Dr. Joe Tatarewicz remarked: "The Marcella Chapel complex is important and interesting in its own right. As one of the earliest crucibles of Methodism in the United States, the chapel that Marcella Owings Worthington founded on land donated by her son, Rezin Worthington drew a diverse congregation of landowners, workers, slaves, and freemen. So prominent and important was it that in the late 19th century that portion of Old Court Road was known as 'Marcella Chapel Road.' In the associated cemetery were buried many congregates, prominent as well as little-known. The Worthington's themselves chose to bury some of their own in this cemetery, making it a companion to the main Worthington family cemetery nearby. The Marcella Chapel complex was a satellite to the adjacent and vast Worthington Plantation, whose remaining central core and headquarters comprised more than 250 acres..."

Rev. Owings father Joshua and Uncle Samuel were particularly active in St. Thomas which was established in 1742 - both being frequent vestrymen. In 1753 both Joshua and Samuel are on record for signing the Test Act of 1673 - also known as "The Oath". During summers when visiting Uncle Samuel's, the family took their meals under an ancient forest walnut tree which measured thirty-two feet in circumference and cast a shade at noontide of one-hundred twenty feet.

Each July from 1758-1763, Rev. Richard Owings two first cousins Bale and Samuel were declared by St. Thomas as "bachelors in the parish above the age of 25 and worth three-hundred pounds and upwards." By 1765, Rev. Owings first cousin Samuel Owings was tithing ten-percent of his milling operations to the Baltimore Methodist Society. Samuel Owings milling operations are the namesake for Owings Mills, Maryland in Baltimore County. Samuel was known as the nation's leading hydraulics expert. Samuel's wife Deborah Lynch Owings was a particularly active during a period when few women spoke publicly and none were allowed to attend preacher's conferences. Rev. John Littlejohn criticized Deborah for preaching publicly at a Quarterly Meeting near Baltimore: "S' Owings is impress' w' an Ideal that God has called her to preech - she did & made an attempt to address the people, and failed. This cured her enthusiasm."

Beginning in the late fall of 1772, Joshua and Richard begin to appear in the diary of Bishop Francis Asbury. On December 27th, 1784, Rev. Owings attended the ordination of Bishop Francis Asbury.

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