5 A somewhat simple fellow embraced the Baptist faith and became obsessed with the idea that he was called to preach. Rev. Ross recognized his lack of judgement, but being unable to persuade him otherwise, he discovered that he could memorize readily and repeat word for word any sermon given him. Rev. Ross prepared a sermon and gave it to him to memorize, concluding to test the young fellow at his next appointment at Leon. The service was held in an old school house with a large fireplace. The congregation formed a circle about the fire while the preacher occupied a place before the fire facing the circle. Rev. Ross led a song and the young man was introduced. He repeated his text and launched into the sermon that astonished his hearers. As he proceded he spoke more rapidly as he repeated Rev. Ross' sermon word for word. When he was about half through an old fox hound belonging to Nick Keith pushed into a corner near the fire behind the preacher. Someone sitting near the fire picked up the redhot poker and gave the hound a punch. The dog raised a howl, broke for the door and in his wild getaway ran between the legs of the preacher, upsetting him and leaving him sitting on the floor, and overturning the table that was being used for a pulpit. When the uproar was over the young man was blank as he had lost the thread of the discourse. Rev. Ross made a few remarks and closed with prayer. The news got out that Rev Ross had [primed?] the young man by writing a sermon and letting him memorize it. After that the young man was referred to as “Brother Ross' derringer”.
Rev. Ross was possessed of a keen sense with humor. As the frontier villages began to grow into towns the women became anxious that Rev. Ross should dress up a bit. True son of the soil he was satisfied with his homespun garments prepared by his faithful wife. As the time for the Association drew near and he was to preach the intorductory sermon the