Thursday, July 14, 1897
MRS. Jane Simmons, relict of the late John Simmons, is living with her son, Robert, at the Warwick Spring. She is totally blind, but bears her affliction with remarkable cheerfulness. Her memory of persons and local events is very retentive, and it is interesting to hear her tell of the former days and the personal history of the pioneers. She is a granddaughter of the old Revolutionary Veteran Timothy McCarty, one of the earliest settlers in the Hills, and we hope to tell our worthy readers something interesting about him and his descendants in the course of time.
ONE of the oldest families in our county is that of the McCollam relationship.
While it is not certain, yet there is good reason to believe that the pioneer ancestor was named Dan. McCollam. From some interesting correspondence had by James McCollam’s family with a lady in New Hampshire, there is reason to question that he was of Scotch- Irish descent, and the son of a physician, a graduate of the University of Edinburg, and lived in New Jersey. The name of the pioneer’s wife cannot be recalled.
Mr. McCollam, the ancestor, came from New Jersey in 1770, or thereabouts, and settled on Brown’s Mountain near Driscol, which is yet known as the “McCollam Place,” now in the possession of Amos Barlow, Esq. His children were Jacob, Daniel, William, Rebecca, Mary and Sara…
A Woman in the Bar
At each Court, strangers are mystified and amused to see a fat old lady sitting in the bar with the lawyers, calmly knitting away from a ball of yarn that was originally white, but which by the slow progress of the work and much use, has become a dirty black. Such is Becky Clayter, the former defendant of a suit in chancery, whose lands were subjected to the payment of her debts. She mistrusts all the lawyers, her own the most of any.
She relies on the Judge and she generally manages to secure a hearing while his honor is on the bench, at which time she tries to make her case clear by referring to a “forged note,” and a “deed without a pole,” all the time trying to get the court to read her authority, which is a carefully treasured page of an almanack. One day during last Court, she came in and deposited her dirt begrimed workbasket in the lawyer’s consulting room, took an arm chair in the bar near the clerk and knitted away most unconcernedly except when she looked up to try to comprehend some particular knotty point in the argument.
On this morning, she had picked a resplendent bouquet for the Judge, consisting of wild roses and other common wild flowers, but she saw no good opportunity to present it and she handled it all day until it was much wilted. The writer saw her late in the afternoon with flowers on a table in the bar, but does not know whether the Judge finally received the much abused bouquet of wild flowers.
Becky Clayter is to be expected every Court. She does not comprehend that her land is irretrievably sold and tries to pay her tax tickets each year, which the Sheriff refuses to accept. She is a very good cross between the mad Miss Flyte of Jarndyce vs. Jarndyce in “Bleak House,” and “Poor Peter Peebles” in the Waverly Novels, both of whom haunted the courts of chancery. The latter fell down in a “perplexity fit,” as was reported, and so we may expect Becky Clayter to sit in our bar as long as the officers of the Court will let her, or until she too falls down in a “perplexity fit.”
King of Dudes
The greatest dandy in the world is Prince Albert, of Thurn, Germany. This fastidious young man attires himself in a new suit of clothes every day, enough yearly to keep twenty experienced workmen going and to run up a bill of $15,000. Each suit of wearing apparel is highly perfumed with attar of roses at $55 an ounce. He wears no less than 1,000 neckties during the year, being an average of three every day. A laundry employing twelve people is kept specially for washing his soiled linen, which he never wears more than twice, and his cast off boots number 200 pairs a year.
Mrs. Mattie Beard, relict of the late Joseph Beard, Esq., died at the residence of her grandson, Geo. W. Callison, near Hillsboro, last Friday night, July 9, 1897, aged 82 years, one month, and three days, having been born June 6th, 1815. She was the youngest daughter of John Jordan, the pioneer merchant, and his wife, Miriam McNeel, daughter of John McNeel, the first settler of the Levels who were married December 30, 1796.
Her children were Lieut. J. J. Beard, of Huntersville, Margaret Jane, first wife of Capt. Wm. L. McNeel, and Miriam Nannie, wife of Isaac McNeel, Esq…
Her remains were borne to the McNeel cemetery and placed by the side of her venerable husband, while surrounded by an immense throng of sympathizing friends and kindred, to wait the everlasting morning.
–W. T. P.
– – –
Last Sabbath afternoon, July 11, Mrs. Nancy Callison, the widowed wife of the late Josiah Callison, Esq., died at her home near Locust in the 79th year of her age. Heart trouble seemed to have been the immediate cause of her death. Mrs. Callison was a daughter of the late Thomas Hill, Esq., near Hillsboro, and was a very highly esteemed lady for her many excellent traits of character.
Mrs. J. K. Bright, of Hillsboro, is her daughter; her sons, Thomas, William, Richard and George, are prosperous, well known citizens of Pocahontas and all revered her memory as one of the best of mothers.
– W. T. P.
– – –
Mr. Elisha Jacobs died at his home on Anthonys Creek July 4th, aged 88 years and 14 days. For many years he has been a member of the M. E. Church and was a very honest, industrious and patriotic citizen.