Historically Speaking: Finding History in Old Stained-Glass Windows

As one drives north on Highway 11 through Trenton, located between Industrial Boulevard South and North, there is a small road named Jacoway Street. The street is named for early residents of Trenton/Dade County. The Jacoway family was key in the community for most of the 19th and early 20th centuries. In this century, two of the Jacoway clan have been chosen to be featured in the May 19 Historical Society cemetery walk (more about the walk in the upcoming weeks). I recently found a short history of the family printed in a booklet entitled “The Memorial Windows of Trenton United Methodist Church,” which was written for a church homecoming in 1989. The passage follows:

Both the Jacoway and Pace families entered Dade County in 1839, the Pace family coming with a wagon train of settlers of Macon County, N.C.; the Jacoway family coming east from Jackson County, Ala. John Garrett (1818-1893) and Nancy Middleton (1827-1855) Jacoway purchased farmland in and near Trenton (part of which was donated to become the present Baptist Cemetery). The Rev. John G. Jacoway was a preacher in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, practiced law, became the County Ordinary (1860-1863), took the census, and represented Dade County in the legislature.

John Garrett’s son, John Price (1854-1915), was Dade County School Superintendent and practiced law in Georgia and Alabama. He served as judge and joined the Methodist Church about 1895 with his wife Carrie Lee Pace (1862-1929). Their thirteen children were born in Dade: Benjamin, Eula, Sidney, Price, Grady, Clay, Griggs, Clare, Lynn, Boyd, Carrie Lee, Catherine and Celeste.

Carrie Pace was the daughter of Benjamin Franklin Pace (1825-1892) and Amanda Meadors (1828-1911). Benjamin Pace farmed in Dade and operated a tannery. He was the youngest son of Jeremiah Richard Pace (1781-1839) and Keziah Brittain (1789-1843) who established the “Pace Plantation” in Dade in 1839. Some families connected to the Jacoway family: Cole, Gilreath, Middleton, Taylor and Dunlap.

Some families connected to the Paces: Asbury, Hatcher, Dupuy, Morrison, Gardenhire, and Hendrix.

While the information included here might not be of interest to some readers, a person interested in genealogy and/or the history of Trenton/Dade County will find this information very useful. Reading through the booklet about the windows in the older Methodist Church one can trace most of the major families of 20th century Trenton.

Connections to the Jacoway family remain at Trenton United Methodist Church in the distant family connections of Linda Jo Pace Smith, Sharon Rogers Morris, Robin Rogers and their families.

Included with this article is a photograph of the stained-glass window in the old Trenton Church, which has recently been remodeled. The pews and carpet were removed and the floor was refinished to its original state. Gorgeous heart-pine floors helped the music resound and embellished the singing at two recent services during the Advent and Lenten.

The church was in use from 1931 (and I am learning more about those times at I study some old documents that came my way) until 2004, when the new church was opened on Easter Sunday.

Shifting to some Society business, we enjoyed a great meeting last Saturday at the library. We acquired several new members. Research for the Cemetery Walk will continue this week. The day was cold and wet for the Historic Courthouse tours, but we still had quite a few interested people (35) to come by and visit, ask questions and make a few donations.

(Photo: Guests chat at the March 10 courthouse tour.)

Thank you for your time and your donations. There is a long way to go until complete renovation is realized; but inch by inch we will persevere until the dream of the repurposed building is realized.

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