15 Jul 2007

Abiline Travel Log

Author: Bobby Valentine | Filed under: Bobby's World, K. C. Moser, Restoration History

Abilene Travel Log

I left early Wednesday morning (4 am) for Abilene, TX and arrived about 5:30 CT. I arrived back in Tucson last night. It was a wonderful trip. My purpose was to visit with Fran Moser Winkles and live in the library … but more of that in a moment. First some interesting details …

First it is a long way from Tucson to Abilene (about 750 miles). For such a trip you need plenty of things to spin in the CD player. So I listened to Jonathan Pennington’s New Testament Greek Vocabulary (every word in the NT down to words that occur 10x). My musical companions were the Beatles (Rubber Soul), Pink Floyd (Echoes), Bruce Springsteen (The Rising), and U2 (The Best of 1990-2000).

Second, this is for my friend John Dixon in Milwaukee. I went through Sweetwater, the land of Windmills and Rattlesnake rounds. But I also learned that in Sweetwater, Texans confess the real glory of the better states, 🙂 There is a street called Alabama Avenue!!!

As I was traveling through El Paso I had a hard time finding an English language radio station. I found it humorous that I found on the Spanish language channel the best music I could understand … AC/DC (Rock and Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution) and the commercial for Pepsi … 🙂

On the way back, between Midland (the home of G.W. and Laura Bush) and Odessa the most interesting thing happened. I spotted a low flying aircraft crossing the hwy some distance in front of me. Then he flew parallel to I-20. Then he (or she!) literally buzzed us on the hwy. The plane flew no higher than 300 feet nearly right over my Saturn Vue. Now this was not a crop duster or a little Cessna. To my amazement it was a World War II B-24 Liberator heavy bomber. If you do not know what that looks like you can find one here.

In Abilene I received the generous hospitality Dr. Carisse Berryhill and her lovely family. She is the director of the Center for Restoration Studies at Abilene Christian University. While at the Library I ran into my friend Edward Robinson who wrote a wonderful study of one of my heroes called To Save My Race From Abuse: The Life of Samuel Robert Cassius. Ed has done a great service to the church through this book. Also while there I had one of those moments of special providence. Though I was looking for Moser treasure, I was given much more. I came away with an entire set of the Christian Baptist, The Campbell-Walker Debate, The Campbell-Purcell Debate, and Campbell’s Popular Lectures and Addresses. I came away with DeGroot’s The Restoration Principle; The Autobiography of J. W. McGarvey; Isbell’s War and Conscience; and some fairly rare sermon books as well as other goodies and they literally dropped into my lap. God is good!!

I was able to stand in the very pulpit that Thomas Campbell preached in every Lord’s Day while in Ahory, Ireland before he immigrated to the United States in 1807. That was fun.

I was also able to spend a good portion of the day with Fran and Dub Winkles on Thursday and Friday (we went to The Towne Crier for dinner on Friday nite). Fran graciously talked to me and answered dozens of my questions. She opened up her father’s papers to me. I was able to tie together many loose ends in my Moser research. In the library I found lots of treasures hidden in obscure places (like a genuine letter from K. C. Moser to W.D. Ledlow in Batsell Baxter’s Thorp Spring Christian College gradebook for 1918-1919!! I has been stuck there since 1920). I was able to locate some class materials that he gave out in 1965 and 1966. And most of all Fran let me read Moser’s personal journals … these are interesting!

Perhaps I will have enough material now to write my biography of K. C. Moser: Apostle of Grace to the Churches of Christ (or some such title!).

19 Responses to “Abiline Travel Log”

  1. Carisse Says:

    Glad you’re home safe, Bobby. We sure enjoyed having you here.

    That vintage airplane probably belongs to what used to be called the “Confederate Air Force,” a Midland-based group of plane preservationists.

    Nope, I’m not head of the Center for Restoration Studies — Doug Foster is! I’m head of the Callie Faye Milliken Special Collections. (Just so Doug won’t feel slighted.)

    We hope to see you again in September at the ACU Bible Lectures.

  2. Bob Bliss Says:

    Rubber Soul is my favorite Beatles album. I don’t like the British version (I grew up with the Capital version) but Capital has released the American albums of the Beatles in sets with 4 CDs.

    I’m looking forward to reading your biography of Moser. I’m sure you will let us know when it is ready and available.

    Speaking of Abilene, our congregation (Mt. Dora CofC) is celebrating its 75th year this October. The brother who is organizing the event asked if I would keep Leonard Allen. Brother Allen went through the Bible School here in Mt. Dora and is coming back for the reunion. I’m really excited about having Brother Allen. I have enjoyed his work (have his books and read them). I’m thrilled about having him in my home for that time.

    I had Dr. Berryhill for one class at Harding Grad. Don Meredith was in the hospital and she taught his “Introduction to Grad Studies.” Great class. Dr. Berryhill, if you come back to read more comments, HI.

  3. Tim Archer Says:

    Wish I’d known you were here. Give me a call next time you’re here in Abilene. Glad you had safe travel.

    Grace and peace,

  4. john dobbs Says:

    Sounds like a great trip, Bobby. I can’t wait for your book. But I do not want to travel with you. No Willie Nelson? In Texas no less.

  5. Falantedios Says:

    No kidding, John. No Willie, no Waylon, no ZZ Top, no Bob Wills. If you’re going through Texas, let Texas go through you!

    in HIS love,

    PS – Borrowed Kingdom Come from Rochester College library through Inter-Library Loan. Am devouring it. Harding WAS passionate about the Holy Spirit! The intro to the Means of Grace is powerfully convicting.

  6. preacherman Says:

    Wow. Sounds like you had a great time. The Towne Crier is one of my favorite place to get ribeye in Abilene. The picture of you behind that pulpit, must have felt humbling and incredible. I am glad you had this wonderful experience.

  7. Steve Puckett Says:

    Great trip and trip notes, bro!

    I will be thinking about you while I’m in North Alabama, Maud in Colbert County to be specific, eating Blackberry cobbler and country ham and biscuits.

    I’m driving so I’m collecting my reading by audio materials for the 14 hour trip (685 miles).

    I will be posting pictures and blog entries at ZZPuck as I have time and find adequate bandwidth.


  8. Dee O'Neil Andrews Says:

    I’m “fixin’ to” come out to Abilene, myself, Bobby, to see my mom. Too bad you didn’t delay your Abilene trip by a couple of weeks because we could have met up over at Town Crier, which is only about three or four blocks from my mom’s house!

    Thanks for the trip “tour” and pictures. Great stuff. But I’m with John and Nick on the music. You really MUST listen to Willie and Waylon and “the boys” when you come to Texas. When Tom and I cross the state line our Texas music goes in the CD player and doesn’t stop until we’ve left Texas again.

    Usually there is a side trip from wherever we are down to Luckenbach, too! Talk about shrines . . .


  9. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:

    Guys and Gals, I really do have a soft spot for ZZ Top but they simply did not make the trip. But I really cannot do Willie, 😉 Charlie Daniels or Shania Twain is about as country as I get …


    I am delighted you are reading KC. I hope you find a blessing within it. You are right about Harding. It is difficult to overstate the importance of the Holy Spirit to his life. And the “Four Means of Grace” is something we desperately need within the CofCs.

    Kenny, there is a certain feeling about stepping into that pulpit. It is just wood for sure but it still has a certain dignity about it and to know that some one has proclaimed the gospel from behind it for 200+ years is humbling.

    Steve enjoy the trip to N. Alabama. A great place is it not. Drive carefully. I will be looking for the photos.

    Bobby V

  10. Zack Says:

    Wow! Cool stuff! Are you writting a book about KC Moser? I hope at some point to purchase your book about Worship when it comes out on the Leafwood website. I pray all is well. Blessings!

  11. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:


    Yes, I am writing a book about Moser.

    Bobby V

  12. cwinwc Says:

    We travelled most of that same route going the other direction from Florida to Colorado. When you mentioned Midland I couldn’t help but think of a KOA Campground we camped at in the lovely metropolis of Dalhart, Texas.

  13. Lee Hodges Says:

    Bobby, K.C. Moser’s books were a great encouragement to me in my road to understanding the Grace of God. Looking forward to your book!

  14. Wade Tannehill Says:


    Someone has needed to write the book you’re writing for a long time. I’m assuming Fran is Moser’s daughter. What thrilling discoveries you made in Abilene!

    So will your publisher be Leafwood or do you know yet?

    I just recently spent three days in the car (from Kansas to Ohio) with Eric Clapton and Kansas. Wife and kids were in the other vehicle.

    I’ve also spent considerable time re-shelving my library in a new location. With your constantly expanding library, was it a chore to organize it when you got to Arizona?

  15. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:

    Wade my library is still not totally organized. But I am working on it.

    Glad you are safe in Ohio.

    Bobby Valentine

  16. preacherman Says:

    What did you think of Town Crier?
    Did you get a steak?

  17. John Dickosn\ Says:

    See, I told you that Sweetwater was a great place! Glad you had a safe trip! I finally got my ISP to work again, so we are back online and looking forward to reading your updates! We miss you! John Dickson Family

  18. Jim Says:


    I am thrilled that you are writing this book! This story needs to be told. I have so much respect for Moser.

  19. Banner Says:

    I found your site by doing a search on Google for KC Moser. I’m thrilled that you are writing a book about this man. I also love the title that you gave. I have recently become aware of Moser’s writings and have discovered a spiritual connection with the man. In my early years I was blessed to set at the feet of a brother named Jim Massey (Jim went to be with the Lord in 1995). I learned about the grace of God from this man. I could say much more concerning my love for him and my thankfulness for what he taught (but I won’t at this time). Upon recently discovering Moser I’ve learned that they were both at Lubbock together. I believe that there is some common influence there. If you are not familiar with Brother Massey or of this connection I encourage you to explore it further. If you are interested send me an email and I can get you in touch with the proper sources. Regardless, I encourage you in your efforts and eagerly look forward to the finished book.

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