Matthew Bradley Epperson
Dates on Tombstone
Notes from Arnold Epperson: Matthew was in Chidester on a vacation when he
fell ill from uremic poisoning and died. He was returned to Cleburne, TX for
his funeral service. He is buried in the Cleburne Cemetary next to his second
wife, Emma Reeves. See Additional notes in the link on the genealogy
Was named for his mothers uncle Mathew B. Gulley (N), who died 03-16-1862 in the Civil war. Famalies sometimes honored a soldier who died in the Civil War by giving his name to the next child born in the family.
The following is from Mathew Epperson's Obituary.
Reverend Matthew Bradley Epperson was born November 5, 1862 at what later became Zama Ark. near the Nevada-Ouachita county line. His mother, Nancy Black, was a native of Alabama, while his father, Leander Epperson was born, in Tennesseee. Of Scott-Irish ancestry, the Eppersons reared a family of 13 childrem of whom Matthew was the sixth of eleven sons.
Being pioneers in this section the Eppersons pratically produced alll thier supplies off thier farm, evern the shoes and boots worn by each member of the family.
Note the spelling of his name is spelled Matthew, which is the way it is spelled on his tombstone. But this change to the Biblical spelling of his name was apparently made late in life. The family record of his birh and his marriage his father's 1880 census and his 1900 census all have Mathew.
In 1880 at age, 17 Mathew was living with his parents and working as a labor on his fathers farm located about 4 miles from Bluff city Arkansas.
Mathew desired to be a Prsbyterian minister, and felt that a college eduction would make him a more effective preacher. About 1891 he moved with wife and children to Clarksville, Arkansas and enrolled in the College of the Ozarks, a United Presbyterina Institution. Matthew Bradley then entered the Collage of the Ozarks, to prepare for the ministry. Though lacking a few units of work necessary for a degree when he left college, Mr. Epperson received a call to his first pastorate, the Prebyterian Church at Coldwater Arkansas. Thirty years later, on his visit to his Alma Mater, he was awarded that coveted degree at the age of 70... Rev Epperosn pastored chruches in Rosston, Bluff, Springs, Buena Vista, and Laneburg. He was especially fond of the Harmony Church, which he had honor of founding. During his vacation he did quite a bit of mission work in the Northern part of the state.
In 1900 Mathew and Lizzie were living in Union Twp Nevada Co., AR. He was 37 born in AR, his father in TN and his mother in AL. Lizzie was 36 born in AR. her parents born in TN. She was the mother of 8, 5 living. Livinj with them were five children agees 1 through 17, also his mother Nancy M. Epperson, a 69 year old widow. Lizzie died in 1901 and Nancy died in 1902
About 1907 Rev. Epperson moved his family of five children and his wife to Texas, whee he pastored churches at Pinehill, Wrightsboro, Leakey and Blaket. At one time county judge of Vandera County, Texas , and teacher at dirrerent times, Rev. Epperson always retained an active interest in civic affairs.
Retired for active ministry at the age of 60, as his health was poor at the time on account of two serious operations, Mr. Epperson spent the final years of his life with his two sons, Troy and Finis, of Cleburne Texas. At the time of his death Rev. Epperson was serving as Chaplin in Pat Cleburne Camp #88, United Confederate Vererans, Cleburne, Texas.
Rev. Epperson was the father of 10 children from two marriages. Threre were nine from his first wife, and one from his second.