Photos Contributed by Virginia Lisa Wells, Great-Great Niece

Samuel Levert Tarrant

Samuel Levert Tarrant was born in Elyton, Jefferson County, Alabama, September 5, 1842, and was the son of James Tarrant, a noted Methodist minister for 40 years. He grew up on the farm, and owing to the Civil War, was deprived of an early education. He joined the Confederate Army, fought in defense of the South, and made a brave and loyal soldier, taking part in some of the bloodiest battles in the war, and returned home without a wound. During some of the hard fighting in Georgia, he realized that death might come at any time, and therefore at Lovejoy Station during a preaching service, professed religion. He married Nancy A. Smith in 1866 and there were born to them 12 children, four dying in infancy and childhood. They moved to Texas some time after the birth of their second child.

Samuel Levert & Nancy A. Smith Tarrant

After coming to Texas about 1868, he united with the Missionary Baptist Church at Canton and was baptized by the pastor, Rev. Mr. Scruggs. He was licensed to preach in 1883 and ordained to the full work of the ministry September 24, 1884 by the Shady Grove Church with Revs. J.N. Chandler, E. Blanton and others acting as presbytery. He was a messenger from the Shady Grove Church at the organization of the association in 1880. Like so many of his Baptist preacher brethren, he farmed five days a week and spent the weekends ministering to many of the churches. He was elected moderator of the association in 1888 and presided over that one annual session of the association.

Rev. S.L. Tarrant died near Josephine, Collin County, Texas, at the home of his daughter, Mrs. W.M. Yeatts, on May 26, 1921. He was laid to rest in the city cemetery in Cleburne, Texas, on May 28, 1921, being 78 years, 8 months and 21 days old.

Reverend Tarrant was buried in present-day Cleburne Memorial Cemetery in Cleburne, Johnson County, Texas.
Paluxy Baptist Association Centennial Story
1880 – 1980