Collection Title:

W.P. Crouch Papers, 1904-1924, undated


The Holloway Archives at Milligan University
P. H. Welshimer Memorial Library
200 Blowers Blvd.
Milligan, TN 37682




W.P. Crouch Papers, 1904-1924, undated

Collection No.



0.33 cubic feet (1 box)




W.P. Crouch received a Master of Arts degree from Milligan College (now Milligan University) in 1905. He was a preacher and teacher in Johnson City and other area churches. He was the father of Milligan College Bible faculty member Owen Crouch. This collection contains some of his sermons and other materials relating to his ministry.

Biographical Note:

William Peyton Crouch was born to Henry H. and Nancy Dickson Crouch in Johnson City, TN, on March 1, 1872. Crouch attended Johnson City schools for his primary education. He and Frankie T. Alexander of St. Charles, MO, married on April 6, 1893. Frankie Crouch was born September 12, 1871. She and William had five children: Joseph, Lloyd, William Jr., Owen, and Lois. All of the Crouch children attended Milligan College, and Owen served as part of the Bible faculty.

Crouch attended Fayetteville Collegiate Institute for an unknown number of years and was strongly influenced by Professor James A. Tate. Following this, Crouch graduated from Milligan College with an A.M. (atrium magister or Master of Arts) degree in 1905.

While Crouch lived in Johnson City he preached at local churches and taught in the public schools. He was principal of Columbus Powell School for six years. Crouch’s pulpit ministry career began in 1901 and he quickly became known for encouraging growth in new congregations. He served congregations in Pulaski, Collierville, Clarksville, Shelbyville and Bristol, Tennessee. He also served at Athens, AL, Carlisle, KY, and Clifton Church of Lousiville, KY. His final church was East End Christian Church in Memphis, TN, which he had served for about two years upon his death on June 19, 1925. His wife Frankie passed away in Witchita Falls, TX, on September 10, 1943. William and Frankie are both buried in the Crouch plot in the Monta Vista Cemetery, Johnson City, TN.


Processing included breaking the collection into Series, writing the finding aid, making phase boxes for the two notebooks, and repairing the sermon “A Man Who Wanted to Know” with myrtle paper. The collection was arranged by type into three series: I. Series: Sermons, 1923, undated; II. Series: Notebooks, 1904-1911; and III. Series: Correspondence, 1921-1924.

Scope and Content Note:

The papers of W.P. Crouch are arranged into three series: Sermons, Notebooks, and Correspondence.

I. Series: Sermons includes material from the year 1923 and undated material. This series contains 11 handwritten (except for two) sermons titled A Man Who Wanted to Know, A World Without Christ, Blowing Soap Bubbles, The Campbells and Their Purpose, Christ’s Church – NT, Excuses, The Greatest Problem of the 20th Century, Knowing God, Prayer, Seen and Unseen, and The Two Sons.

II. Series: Notebooks spans the years 1904 to 1911. These two red leather-bound notebooks were used to record the titles and dates of messages delivered, as well as to which congregation. The notebooks also record weddings, funerals, salary received from congregations, and short membership rolls. There are a handful of diary-like entries in the flip-top notepad. Entries appear to be grouped by congregation and are thus in a rough chronological order. Several blank pages may separate information on one congregation from that of another.

III. Series: Correspondence spans the years 1921 to 1924 and contains two letters. The first is a typewritten form letter asking congregation members for their support and enthusiastic participation in an upcoming revival. The second is a typewritten letter to one Brother Cowden, author of a book or pamphlet entitled “Christian Unity and Open and Close Membership.” This letter is in response to points raised in Cowden’s publication.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information:

Accession 2019/003

Note: There was no accession year available when this collection was processed, therefore the year when the finding aid was updated has been used.

No acquisition records can be found for the Crouch Sermons. However, previous box lists show that the materials have been here since at least the mid-1990s. These materials were previously kept together in a box as part of the Artifacts Collection. They have been removed because they are not artifacts; the format and nature of the materials qualifies them as an independent collection. Notations on one of the sermons suggest that Crouch’s children had access to and perhaps sorted the materials before they came to the archives. (The notations simply say “papa’s” and “not papa’s.” They can be found on the sermon titled “Christ’s Church – NT.”)

Access Restrictions:

Collection is open for research. Due to the fragile nature of this collection’s contents, access copies are made available for the fragile items.

The archivist reserves the right to determine on a case-by-case basis if certain folders within the collection that have been requested for viewing cannot be made available due to various restriction compliance, including but not limited to student information, private personal information, and organizational information of a restricted nature.

Preferred Citation:

[Item], W.P. Crouch Papers, Collection C0038, The Holloway Archives at Milligan University, Milligan, TN.

Processing Information:

Processed by: Ginger Dillon

Completed in 2007.

Folder List

Box 1

I. Series: Sermons, 1923, undated

  • A Man Who Wanted to Know, undated

  • A World Without Christ, 1923

  • Blowing Soap Bubbles, undated

  • The Campbells and Their Purpose, undated

  • Christ’s Church – NT, undated

  • Excuses, undated

  • The Greatest Problem of the 20th Century, undated

  • Knowing God, undated

  • Prayer, undated

  • Seen and Unseen, undated

  • The Two Sons, undated

II. Series: Notebooks, 1904-1911

  • Notebook, 1904

  • Notebook, 1911

III. Series: Correspondence, 1921-1924

  • Correspondence, 1921-1924

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