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Title: A Sketch of Charles T. Walker, D.D., Pastor of Tabernacle Baptist Church, Augusta, Ga.
Author: Floyd, Silas Xavier
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "A Sketch of Charles T. Walker, D.D., Pastor of Tabernacle Baptist Church, Augusta, Ga." ***

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                                A SKETCH
                        Charles T. Walker, D. D.

                              AUGUSTA, GA.

                       Silas Xavier Floyd, A. B.,
                     EDITOR OF THE WEEKLY SENTINEL.


                              AUGUSTA, GA.,
                        Sentinel Publishing Co.,

Charles Thomas Walker was born on the 11th day of January, 1858, at
Hephzibah, Ga. Hephzibah is in Richmond county about 14 miles south-west
of Augusta. He is the youngest of 11 children of whom 6 are dead and 5
are living. His father, Thomas Walker, was buried the day before he was
born. His mother, Mrs. Hannah Walker, died in 1866, little Charley being,
at the time, only 8 years old.

Thus, even before Charles was born, his mother was draped in the weeds of
widowhood, and he first opened his eyes on the light of this world as a
fatherless child. Thus, also, in early childhood, even before he had any
realizing sense of his true condition, he was compelled by the stern, but
beneficent discipline of an Alwise Providence to wail forth the cry of
complete orphanage.

On Wednesday before the first Sunday in June, 1873, while young Walker
was hoeing cotton, he decided to seek the Lord. He left the field that
day and went into the woods, and remained in the woods from Wednesday
afternoon without eating, drinking or seeing anyone, until the following
Saturday afternoon when he was converted. He was baptised on the first
Sunday in July by his uncle, the Rev. Nathan Walker, then pastor of the
Franklin Covenant Church, a faithful servant of the Master, who still
lives, shedding light and love among the people.

Young Walker immediately became an active and zealous Christian, and
was impressed with the thought that he was called of God to preach
the gospel. Accordingly in 1874, he entered the Augusta Institute, a
theological school located at Augusta and presided over by the late
Joseph T. Robert, D. D., L. L. D. This school has since been moved to
Atlanta and is now the Atlanta Baptist Seminary. In school. Mr. Walker
was soon celebrated for his great ability, for his thoroughness of
scholarship, and for his exemplary deportment. He had only 6 dollars when
he entered school. The first term he did his own cooking; he cooked only
twice a week—on Wednesdays and Saturdays; so great was his desire for
knowledge that he felt that he could not spare the time to cook every
day. When he had spent his six dollars he picked up his little bundle and
was on the eve of leaving school. Some of his student friends finding
out the reasons of his proposed departure and realizing what a loss it
would be to them and to the cause, remonstrated with him and urged him
to be patient a day or so longer. One of his fellow students, the Rev.
Dr. Love, of Savannah, Ga., went so far as to promise him that he would
provide for him personally until arrangements could be made. Mr. Walker
consented to remain; meanwhile Dr. Robert had been informed and he, in
turn succeeded in interesting three gentlemen of Dayton Ohio, in young
Walker and through the kindness of these gentlemen, the motherless and
fatherless boy was enabled to prosecute his studies for 5 years at the
Augusta Institute.

In 1876, in the 18th year of his age, Mr. Walker was licensed to preach,
and on the first Sunday in May, 1877, he was ordained to the sacred
office of the gospel ministry. He soon became noted as a preacher,
possessing, as he did supreme eloquence and a fair knowledge of the
scriptures. In 1878 he was elected pastor of the Franklin Covenant
Baptist church, of which he was a member and by the time he was 21 years
old he was pastor of four country churches and one city church; viz:
Franklin Covenant Baptist church, Hephzibah, Thankful Baptist Church,
Waynesboro, McKinnie’s Branch Baptist Church, Burke county, Ebenezer
Baptist church, Richmond county, and Mount Olive Baptist church, Augusta,
Ga. In 1880, he pastored the First Baptist church in LaGrange. In 1882,
he was called to the pastorate of Central Baptist church, Augusta, Ga.,
and the following year resigned and organized the Tabernacle Baptist
church, of which he is still the honored and distinguished pastor.

Rev. Walker built the Tabernacle church in 1885 at a cost of $13,500. It
is a handsome brick structure, and was dedicated in three months from
the day it was commenced. In the beginning its membership was 200. At
present the membership is 900, and Rev. Walker knows them every one by
name. Recently a new pipe organ has been put in the edifice at a cost
of $1,500. The building has already proved too small to accommodate the
great crowd that go to hear this great man preacher, and efforts are
being made to remodel the house of worship and make it much larger.

[Illustration: Rev. C. T. Walker, D. D.

Pastor of Tabernacle Baptist Church, Augusta, Ga., and Treasurer of the
National Baptist Convention of the United States]

Among the office of trust and responsibility which Rev. Mr. Walker
has held are the following: Moderator of the Western Union Baptist
Association, President of the Executive Board of the missionary
Baptist Convention of Georgia, Secretary of the State Baptist Sunday
School convention for 8 years. Members of the Board of trustees of the
Walker Baptist College and treasurer of the American National Baptist
Convention, and Business Manager of THE WEEKLY SENTINEL.

The honorary degree of “Doctor of Divinity” was conferred upon him in
1890 by the State University of Kentucky.

During the summer of 1891, Dr. Walker in company with the Rev. E. R.
Carter of Atlanta, Ga. took an extensive trip through Europe and the
Holy land and besides staying for awhile in England and on the Continent
and in Asia, he took a peep over in to Africa. On his return he lectured
throughout the South and in Boston and New York and every where with
profit and success. Many of the leading newspapers throughout country
spoke in terms of praise and admiration of the wonderful preacher and

The Rev Dr. Walker is only 34 years old—quite young indeed to have
accomplished so much for the advancement of Christ’s Kingdom.

    When Rev. Mr. Walker was leaving Hephzibah, in 1880, for
    LaGrange, one of his white friends, Col. A. C. Walker, gave him
    a letter of recommendation which speaks for itself. Here is
    what the letter said:

    “The bearer, Rev. C. T. Walker, is the fourth in descent from
    a family of Negroes brought from Virginia to Burke county
    by my grand father in 1773. As slaves they were noted for
    their admirable qualities and as freemen have sustained their

    Charles, by his energy, has obtained an excellent education
    and for two years has been licensed teacher of one our public
    schools. His character is irreproachable in all respects and
    by none is he esteemed more than by the more intelligent white
    citizens among whom he lives. It gives me great pleasure to
    testify to his worth and I most respectfully ask for him the
    generous consideration of the new people, with whom he is about
    to cast his lot. We sincerely regret his departure from among
    us, as he was exercising a most happy influence with his own
    race here.”

    Rev. Walker came to Augusta in 1883. In 1885, upon the
    completion of Tabernacle church, and on the day of its
    dedication all the papers of Augusta spoke in highest praise of
    the work accomplished and invariably referred to the edifice as
    an everlasting monument to the perseverance and energy of the
    pastor, Rev. C. T. Walker.

    Rev. Walker spent the fall of 1886 in the North, soliciting
    funds to complete the payment of his church property. His
    church had by their own efforts paid $10,000 of the $12,000,
    which the lot and edifice cost. He carried many letters of
    recommendation from leading men of the South.

    Dr. Love, of Savannah, pastor of the largest Baptist church in
    the world, wrote: “Rev. Charles T. Walker is one of the leading
    men of Georgia and is alright.”

    Prof Wm. E. Holmes of the Atlanta Baptist Seminary, wrote:
    “I cheerfully recommend Rev. Mr. Walker and his cause to
    the public and bespeak for him the success which he richly

    Hon. Patrick Walsh, editor of the Augusta Chronicle wrote:
    “Rev. Walker is doing a great good among his people. His church
    is a great credit and both he and his people are worthy of
    substantial aid.”

    Hon. R. H. May, then Mayor of the city of Augusta, wrote: “He
    is a perfect gentleman, devout christian and deserving of all

    The testimonials Rev. Walker carried with him on this trip
    might be multiplied ad infinitum.

    In New York Rev. Justin Dewey Fulton wrote: “My people who
    heard him pronounce him a preacher of more than ordinary
    ability. His voice is good, his learning modest and impressive,
    his language excellent, and the aim of his preaching is to
    glorify Christ.”

    In Boston, Rev. J. Horatio Carter, D. D., wrote:

    “Brother Walker is an able, earnest, logical and eloquent
    preacher, and worthy of support.”

    Rev. Walker was present at the organization of the American
    National Baptist Convention in 1886 at St. Louis, Mo., and
    served on the committee of constitution, and otherwise played a
    most prominent part in its organization. He has attended every
    session every year since, and is one of the most prominent
    members at its annual sessions.

    In 1889, at Indianapolis, Ind., before this body, the Rev.
    Mr. Walker preached the National sermon and that with telling
    effect. At its conclusion, the Rev. William J. Simmons, D. D.,
    L. L. D., Pres. of the State University of Ky., walked up to
    the minister, shook his hand and said, “You have won your D.
    D., and I’ll see that you get it.” The following summer, at
    the close of the school year 89-90, Dr. Simmons, true to his
    words had the trustees of the State University of Kentucky to
    confer upon Rev. C. T. Walker, the honorary degree of Doctor of
    Divinity which he has worthily borne ever since.

    Writing up this session of National Baptists the Rev. Dr.
    Daniel A. Gaddie, took occasion to say the Rev. Mr. Walker was
    “a young man full of life and piety, beautiful and attractive
    in delivery. He is an electrifying orator and waxes warm in the
    end. He is a great revivalist, a finished and pointed workman.”

    In this same convention Rev. Walker won for himself a national
    reputation for his wise and conservative stand when the body
    had under consideration the outlawry, lynch law and other
    outrages of the South. He was referred to, by the leading
    newspapers of the country, as a strong man in a crisis. The
    other members of the body, almost to a man, indulged in
    wholesale abuse of the South; maligned its name, hit the white
    people of the South some death dealing blows; excitement ran
    high, Rev. Walker gained the floor and made an able speech
    counseling wisdom and moderation and stating that he believed
    that the best element of the white people in the North were
    trying, to create a public sentiment so powerful against these
    outrages that they will become impossible.

On 21st, of May, 1882, Rev. Walker delivered the annual address
before the Atlanta Baptist and Spelman Seminary on the Needs and
Responsibilities of the Colored Race. It was a masterly effort. In
opening the speaker said:

“When our mind like the swiftly passing scene of a panorama take a
retrospective view of the past history of our race, and when we remember
that for over two centuries, ignorance, the mother of bigotry and
superstition, the bane of society, the prolific mother of weakness, held
our people with its slavish chains, we must admit that many of our people
have made commendable progress, and that the influence of religion,
morality and intelligence is increasingly felt.”

The speaker dwelt at length upon the Needs, and then took up the
Responsibilities. Said he:

“We are responsible for our souls. The soul is immortal, and cannot like
the body, undergo decomposition. It will live forever. When the mountains
are melted in the general conflagration, when the pyramids of Egypt are
levelled to the ground, when the refulgent stars, the silent messengers,
shall cease to dance in their golden sockets; when the moon, the queen
of night, refuses to give her silvery brightness; when the sun, the king
of day, the centre of the solar system, shall be blown out; when earth
is shrouded in her regalia of mourning, and when ocean shall gather all
her waters together to chant her funeral songs, the soul will be living
somewhere in God’s distant universe.”

In 1884, Rev. Walker delivered the annual address on the first day of
January in Augusta. His subject was “A REVIEW OF THE PAST”. It was a
wonderful exposition of the progress of the Negro in America. In the
course of his remarks, he paid the following tribute to Abraham Lincoln;

“Probably no man since the days of Washington was ever so deeply and
firmly imbedded and enshrined in the hearts of the people as Abraham
Lincoln. He won for himself a place in the hearts of our people that time
can never efface. By his noble deeds, emanated from his kind heart, he
wrote his name on the pages of future time as legible as the stars on the
brow of evening.”

In his address at the laying of the corner stone of the new building
of the Atlanta Baptist Seminary, in 1889, Rev. Walker said among other

“If all men would recognize the fatherhood of God, the brotherhood
of man, pledge implicit obedience to the divine law and practice the
scriptural code of ethics, there would be no race problem. The race
problem is born of wickedness, inflamed by modern fanatics, stimulated
and encouraged by speculative, unworthy politicians. The Negro is a
loyal, peaceable, law-abiding citizen; among them you will find no
anarchist, nihilist, liberalist, communionist or strikers; the Negro has
always been found on the side of the constitution of his State and the
Union; he isn’t asking for supremacy or social equality; he only desires
an equal advantage in the race of life; he asks that you do not throw
impediments in his way; don’t close the gates of prosperity against him
because of his color; don’t hate him because he was a slave, he was not
so by choice; don’t despise him because of his ignorance, it is not his
fault; don’t ignore him on account of his poverty, he has had no rich
ancestors to bequeath him landed estates. He is unfortunate, pity him; he
is struggling, help him. A bright day is dawning. Citizens of every rank
and section of this country are uniting hand in hand to advocate such
legislation as will remove illiteracy. The last legislature of Georgia
deserve honorable mention for making appropriation for public education.
Our distinguished State School Commissioner, Judge James S. Hook, is
trying to put Georgia in line with other states intellectually and he is
succeeding admirably. Since God has raised up so many friends for us,
both at home and abroad, let us cultivate a friendly relation with those
among whom we live. Let us have a hand in solving our problem, shaping
our destiny and making for ourselves a creditable history.”

In the foregoing, we have attempted to give a short sketch of the career
of Dr. Walker, together with a few testimonials from his friends and some
extracts from his addresses. The half has not been told. The full history
of his life would make a large volume. It ought to be written, and will
be some time. Suffice it to say that, as a man, Dr. Walker is modest to a
fault, generous in the extreme, patient, forbearing and unselfish; as a
minister, he possesses great fervor and eloquence, and as a pulpit orator
probably he is excelled by no man in this country. The common people hear
him gladly. His highest aim is to be an humble servant of the Lord Jesus

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