In Memory of Elder A.B. Early
Elder A.B. Early was born Feb. 7, 1847, near Harrisonburg, Rockingham County, Virginia. He departed this life March 16, 1937. He was a son of Joseph and Hester Norman Early, a prominent family in both Rockingham and Augusta counties. His home was near New Hope, Va., within the bounds of the Middle River congregation. Bro. Early united with the church when a young man. He served a term of years in the deacon's office. He was elected to the ministry March 24, 1888, and ordained elder in the year of 1906. He was not only an active minister in the church, taking his turn in the pulpit, which place he was able to fill acceptable, and forcefully, but he was also prominent in business circles. He was a farmer, and as such had few equals. He was a lover of the fields, a close observer of nature, and it was out of this atmostphere, that many of his sermons, which were practical in thought and application were born. His methods were practical and fruitful, serving to give him prestige in the community. His counsel was much sought in financial circles. There principals were applied to his church activitites. His business turn of mind, far-seeing, fair judgement, fitted him splendidly for an important phase of church work. WHen problems and difficulties arose he was usually able to see the way out. His counsel was conservative and safe. Doubtleses his greatest contribution to the church was in this avenue of activity. Truly his works will follow him. "He being dead, yet speaketh." Bro Early was married twice. His first wife was Miss Hannah Mary Myers; his second Mrs. Mary Early, who survives. Two sons survive from his first marriage: George Early (minister) of Westminster, Md., and Joe Early of New Hope. Surviving sisters are the misses Mary and Maggie Early of Los Angeles, Calif., and Miss Annie early of Bridgewater, Va. He also leaves four granddaughters and two grandsons. Funeral services were held from the Middle River Church, in the presence of a large gathering of neighbors and friends. Services were conducted by Bro. D.L. Andes, assisted by J.W. Garber and J.W. Wright. Burial in the adjoining cemetery.