Born: November 13, 1879, Lafayette, Illinois.
Died: October 9, 1939, Los Angeles, California.
Buried: Valhalla Memorial Park, Los Angeles, California. His epitaph reads
I Have Fought a Good Fight.
Herbert was the son of John Wesley Buffum and Alice Ann Mallory, and husband of Lillie May Fassett.
After moving with his family to California and converting to Christ at age 18, Buffum felt a call to the ministry. He held ministerial credentials with the Church of the Nazarene, and was a Holiness Pentecostal evangelist.
He was also a prolific song writer, with many songs inspired by personal experience. He had 10,000 songs to his credit, 1,000 actually published. Ripley’s
Believe It or Not claimed he once wrote 12 songs in an hour.
Though a talented musician, Buffum received no musical training. He sold most of his songs for five dollars or less. When he died, the Los Angeles Times called him
the king of Gospel song writers.