Thursday, March 25, 1898
A YOUNG preacher of the county who was about to start for Conference, is said to have preached a very eloquent sermon last Sunday which warmed up several of the members at various points into loud Amens. After a lofty flight, he paused and said: “This, brethren, is my last sermon here. Then an old brother, who had been responding heartily, but who was a little hard of hearing, yelled out,“Thank God!”
House Burned Near Green Bank
The residence of J. W. Riley, two miles north of Green Bank, was totally destroyed by fire last Thursday night. Mr. Riley was away from home, having gone to Beverly, and Mrs. Riley was visiting her daughter, Mrs. W. A. Eskridge, at Academy. A son had come home from a meeting of the local debating society, about eleven o’clock, and had gone to sleep in the sitting room, where the only fire in the house was burning. In a short time, he was awakened by the crackling of the flames. He arose and went to the kitchen where all was right and opened the door to go on the back porch and was met by the flames. The fire had gained such headway that there was no chance of extinguishing it. He was unable to get back into the building to awaken the rest of the family, who were sleeping upstairs, and he aroused them by shouting. They escaped by jumping out of the windows.
Nearly the whole of the furniture was destroyed. Only one bed and a clock were saved. There was no insurance. The home was a large, frame, two-story building, only a few years old. It is supposed to be the work of an incendiary. Someone was heard around the building that night, before the young man came in. The penalty for setting fire to a house occupied at the time by people is death.
Mr. Riley has been singularly unfortunate lately, having experienced numerous reverses. He and his children were working hard to clear off the debts so they could keep the farm, and this is a very serious blow to be borne under the circumstances.
Fine showers. Warm weather for March.
A considerable sum of money was burned up in the Riley fire.
E. N. Moore says if the war goes on, he will send his boy – he weighs 11 and a half pounds.
C. E. Pritchard is home from Baltimore. P. D. Yeager will be home in about two weeks.
Moore & Swecker are making up a big lot of folding bedsprings, the best on the market. Don’t buy any other till you see them.
Lyons, the fur man, was with us again this week, buying furs, beef hides, beeswax, tallow, etc.
O. E. McKeever has been appointed postmaster to take the place of H. P. Patterson.
Dr. James Price, of Marlinton, was called to see Dr. J. B. Lockridge, who was taken suddenly ill Friday night.
The farmers are plowing, cleaning meadows and building fence. The grass is growing, the lambs are skipping, the birds are singing and everything seems to whisper to us that spring is here.
RALPH WANLESS, a pioneer blacksmith and progenitor of the Pocahontas branches of the Wanless relationship, was a native of England. It is believed that Ralph and his brother, Stephen Wanless, lived awhile in the lower Valley of Virginia on the Fairfax lands. About 1790 Ralph Wanless settled in The Hills, near Mount Tabor. Steven located in Bath County, Virginia. Some of his descendants now live near Clover Dale.
Ralph’s wife was Lucretia Nicholas, sister of William Nicholas who was living on Douthards Creek… They were the parents of seven sons and five daughters…
Anna Wanless became Mrs. Reuben Matheny; Mary (Dolly) became Mrs. Alexander Campbell; both couples lived in Highland County. Margaret Wanless was married to James Sharp and lived on Thorny Creek. Elizabeth Wanless became Mrs. Thomas Hadden; and Lydia Wanless married J. McGuire; both couples settled in Ohio.
The sons of Ralph and Lucretia Wanless were William, James, Levin, Ralph, Stephen, John and Thomas.
William Wanless married Nancy Wilson. James was a local minister and a prominent citizen. Ralph junior, first married Anna Poage, daughter of G. W. Poage, of The Levels. They lived on the homestead at Mt. Tabor. Ralph junior had as his second wife Sally Arbogast, daughter of Benjamin Arbogast, of Glade Hill. Levin married Nancy Dilley, daughter of Henry Dilley. Stephen married Mary Pauline Sharp and lived on Back Creek. John married Elizabeth Bridger and settled in Lewis County. Thomas married Julia Bucher and settled in Ohio…
Most all of the Wanless brothers were industrious and skillful workers in iron, acquired from their father, who seems to have been genius to that line of industry, so useful to the people in pioneer and later times. When Ralph Wanless and his sons wrought at the anvil and caused the primitive forests to ring with their strong and resonant striking of hammers and sledges, their business was of essential importance…
Toiling, rejoicing, sorrowing,
Onward through life he goes;
Each morning sees some task begun,
Each evening sees it close.
Something attempted, something done,
Has earned a night’s repose.