Voices From the Past

Voices from the Past is a website dedicated to the Burgin family. From all over the world, they come in July, to reunite in  McDowell County. Traveling back to the soil of their ancestors, bringing to life the stories told at the knee of their grandparents.

An easy, humor-laced read, the site is chocked full of the Burgin family history beginning with one of the first Burgins’ to arrive in America to current information on the up-coming Burgin-Lytle Family reunion.

From Pioneer Ben to the Burgin Quilt history, the facts, photos and stories will enlighten, encourage and bring you closer to the Burgin family.


October Is American Archives Month!

Everyday activity creates an archival record. Today the majority is created digitally…, iPad, iPhone and camera are examples of digital record creation. In years past, written documentation was the primary record…..birth, marriage and death  certificates; last wills and testaments; deeds and maps.

An archival record, per the Society of American Archivist  “are the non-current records of individuals, groups, institutions, and
governments that contain information of enduring value.”  Archives are the repository where the records are maintained and preserved.

What do you have that is of “enduring value” that you would like to preserve for the research and enjoyment of future generations? Contact your local library, museum or historical society to find out how to best maintain your records for generations to come.

McDowell County in the Digital World

A few resources for McDowell County are available at DigitalNC website. The site is dedicated to the digital history of North Carolina. On the McDowell County page, city directories for the years, as well as  a few of the earlier Marion Newspapers.

Craig, John Wilkie

I am trying to find obituaries and wills for John Wilkie Craig and Elizabeth Mary Gillespie who are probably my 2nd great grandparents.  They lived and died in McDowell County in Marion Township.  I believe they lived about 4 miles northwest of Marion near Tom’s Creek.  They are buried in the Craig Family Cemetery that is (at least in 1995) located near where their farm was located on Tom’s Creek. Following is info about them:

John Wilkie Craig (b. 8 May 1797 in Burke (now McDowell), Co. — d. 23 Nov 1884 in McDowell, Co)

Elizabeth Mary Gillespie (b. 6 May 1799 in Burke (now McDowell) Co. – d. 3 Sep 1877 in McDowell County, Co.)

I am also trying to prove that Martha Caroline Craig (b. 1820 in McDowell County – d. 27 Dec 1892 in Fremont County, CO) was their daughter.

I would appreciate any information about how to obtain obituaries and wills or other information about this family.  If I can arrange it, my wife and I may travel to McDowell County in the next year or so for research, but for now I was hoping I could obtain this information on the Internet or by mail.  Thanks for any help.

Thank you, Stan Walker                     Walnut Creek, CA

Sullivan, William

We are researching William H Sullivan and Wife Elizabeth Ernest. Sullivan, William married Elizabeth Ernest in Marion, McDowell July 19, 1845, the “bondsman” was Edward Sullivan. I would love to know if this is our William H. Sullivan and who Edward was, a brother a father? Any suggestions? We have no other back records only forward ones from Louisiana where William and Elizabeth lived.  We are not even sure Elizabeth Ernest is the correct name of William’s wife, but records do indicate he lived or was born in North Carolina

Contact Sylvia Tucker

Charles Harvey Greenlee

McDOWELL COUNTY, NC - OBITUARIES - Charles Harvey Greenlee, 16 Jun 2005

Charles Harvey Greenlee a lifelong resident of the Woodlawn community of
McDowell County passed away Thursday morning in the Spruce Pine Hospital
following and extended illness.

Charles was married to the late Jane Katherine Gill Greenlee. 

A graduate of Lees McRae College, Mr. Greenlee was a farmer by occupation; he
was also a founding partner of Greenlee Lime and Stone, Inc. and an instructor
who taught farm production to returning servicemen following world War II
under the G.I. Bill. A former elder of Landis Presbyterian Church he was a
prominent community leader throughout his life serving as a member of the
McDowell County School Board and as a member of various organizations and
committees including the Farm and Home Administration, Extension Ag Council
and the ASC Committee. His deep love of the region's history made him a local
authority on McDowell County history and he was cited for his work on the
"Over the Mountain" historical trail. A long time member of the McDowell
Democratic Men's Club he was active in politics at both the local and state

He is survived by three daughters, Loto Greenlee Caviness of Marion; Grace
Gordon Greenlee of Marion; and Charlotte Greenlee Carter of Winston Salem; a
brother, William G. Greenlee of Marion; and a grandson and a niece.

Services were held June 21, 2005 at 3:30 p.m. at Westmoreland Funeral Home &
Crematory. The family received friends from 1:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. prior to the
service at the funeral home.

At other times, the family was to be at the home of Bill Greenlee. In leiu of
flowers, memorials were to be made to American Institute for Cancer Research,
1759 R. Street N. W., Washington, DC 20009 or Hospice of McDowell County, 218
Logan Street, Marion, N.C., or a charity of choice. 

Mitchell News-Journal 6/29/05 


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