Papers of Melvin Kelly Medlock 


Medlock, Melvin Kelly, 1907-1969
Papers of Melvin Kelly Medlock, [1930-1969]
MSS Medlock
3 cubic feet

Biographical note:  Born in Greenwood, SC in 1906, the Rev. Dr. Melvin Kelly Medlock graduated from Wofford College in 1927.  After teaching school for several years, in 1931 he was licensed to preach and joined the Upper South Carolina Conference of the Methodist Church.  He was ordained a deacon in 1933 and an elder in 1935.  He served Methodist congregations in Kinards, Graniteville, Jonesville, and Batesburg before being appointed to Trinity, Spartanburg in 1947.  In 1950, he was named superintendent of the Columbia District, and in 1956, became senior minister of Central Methodist Church in Florence, one of the largest churches in the Conference.  In 1963, he was moved to Wesley Memorial Church in the Shandon neighborhood of Columbia where he remained until his sudden death in April 1969.  He was one of the leaders in the South Carolina Conference, serving as a delegate to six jurisdictional conferences and to the 1952 and 1956 General Conference.  He was a delegate to the 1956 World Council of Churches meeting in Evanston, IL.  A trustee of both Lander College and Columbia College at various times, he was a frequent contributor to the South Carolina Methodist Advocate. 

Organization note: Organized into 5 series: biographical and personal; correspondence; official files; writings and sermons; and legal materials

Access note: unrestricted

Summary note: The papers consist largely of Dr. Medlock’s sermon notes, which comprise nearly 2 cubic feet.  During processing, these sermons were removed from his notebooks, but original order was maintained within each notebook.  These sermons cover the years from about 1940 to 1969.  Sometimes sermons have multiple dates handwritten at the top.  The correspondence series contains letters written by and received by Dr. Medlock.  The biographical and personal series contains biographical material, newspaper clippings, some personal effects, photographs, and copies of certain newsletters and information about various churches he served.  The official series contains records of his service as a delegate to various meetings, of his service as a college and Advocate trustee, and from the Cokesbury School.  The legal series consists of materials arising from an attempt by the Prospect Methodist Church to withdraw from the South Carolina Conference.  This series appears to have been created by attorney Travis Medlock. 

Citation:  Cite as: Papers of Melvin K. Medlock, Archives, Sandor Teszler Library, Wofford College

Location:  Archives, Sandor Teszler Library, Wofford College, Spartanburg, SC 29303

Administrative notes:  Papers received by gift from Dr. Melvin D. Medlock, the Honorable T. Travis Medlock, and Robert F. Medlock, summer 2008.  Processing completed by Phillip Stone, June 2010.  Processing involved re-foldering and minimal arrangement of correspondence and sermons.  A fifth series was identified that appears to relate to litigation over the Prospect Methodist Church’s attempt to withdraw from the Methodist Conference and unite with the Southern Methodist Church.  This appears to have been created by attorney Travis Medlock, acting as the conference’s attorney in several years of litigation. 

Finding Aid:  Folder listing

Box 1

Biographical and Personal Series

Ephemera (includes his license to preach, a voter registration certificate, his credentials as a member of the 1952 General Conference,

Biographical materials (2 folders)

Devil’s Advocate (underground newspaper)

The Tattler (underground district newspaper)

Letter to Bishop Paul Hardin, 1961

St. John’s UMC, Graniteville

Central UMC, Florence

Wesley Memorial UMC, Columbia

Trenholm Road UMC, Columbia

Mayme DuBose Medlock materials


Correspondence Series

Correspondence (11 folders)


Official Files Series

Advocate Trustees

Columbia College

General Conference Delegation minutes, 1963-64

Jurisdictional Council

National Council of Churches

World Council of Churches, 1954


Sermons and Writings Series

Upper Room

Candid Comments (3 folders)


Box 2

Sermons and Writings Series (continued)



Box 3

Sermons and Writings Series (continued)



Legal series

Prospect Methodist Church case