Upcoming Opportunites

Here are two upcoming opportunities that will help you learn more about searching ancestors in North Carolina.

I have just found out about these, hope you will have time to not only check them out, but take advantage of the great resources:

Free – November 4th, streaming live and focusing on local collections and resources for local research the North Carolina Virtual Family History Fair.

Free Relay Weekends from the N.C. Genealogical Society, December 1 – 3, 2017, Finding A North Carolina Revolutionary War Ancestor, by Craig R. Scott, CGSM, FUGA

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 


	Copyright.  All rights reserved.

	This file was contributed for use in the USGenWeb Archives 
	by:  Mitchell News Journal

Getting Started

Amy Grisak, begins her article with a “WARNING” label! Sleep deprivation, walking through cemeteries and obsessive tendencies about scraps of paper when it comes to genealogical research.  The article which appears in the 2013 Farmers’ Almanac is titled Digging up Roots – The INS and OUTS of creating your own family tree.

You can read the article at It does not matter if you are a beginner wanting to know the basics of genealogical research or someone who has researched for a long time and now wanting to get back to the basics..this article is packed full of helpful information.

Thanks, Amy for great information.

Historical Review: Mt. Hebron Wesleyan Church by Mrs. Mary K. Burgin

Historical Review by Mrs. Mary K. Burgin, December 28, 1975

I have fond memories of the Old Church and Sunday school.  It was established in the late twenties.  My Dad, Henry J. Knupp and stepmother Sally Solomon Knupp, attended this church until his death in 1935.  Granny Sally, as we called her, was teacher of the Card Class and well known throughout this community for her services as a midwife.

We normally had three classes, The Bible Class, Young People’s Class and Card Class.  If the number present was small the classes would combine.  We would have between 14 and 22 present.  I found a few old records and on December 31, 1950 the Bible class was taught by Mrs. A. R. Walker, number present four.  The Young People’s class and Card Class combined was taught by Mrs. G. M. Moffitt.  Number present ten.  Total present fourteen.  Total amount in collection 43 cents.  Total memory verses seven.  The next Sunday, Jan. 8, improved a little .  Class #1 was taught by Mr. F. G. Knupp.  Number present six.  Class #2 was taught by Mrs. G. M. Moffitt, number present eleven.  Class #3 was taught by Mrs. M. C. Burgin, number present seven, total number present 24.  Total amount in collection $1.55.  Total number memory verses 13.  We would always repeat memory verses after the classes reassembled and then the Sunday school was dismissed.

We also had our visitors, especially in the summer, just as we do now.  One in particular that we always happy to see was Mr. A. C. Reynolds.  Mr. Reynolds was a great educator in Western North Carolina and the one for whom A. C. Reynolds’ High School was named.  He had a cabin on Byrd’s creek and he walked down to Sunday School.  He taught some inspiring Sunday School lessons for us.  I found two old Sunday School Quarterlies. dated 1942.  The lesson for December 27, 1942 was entitled Dynamic Christian Living.  I also found some cards the card class used, the oldest dated January 27, 1935.  One I found dated February 1942, where Helen had been learning to write her name on it.

One thing that stands out in my mind so vividly was the prayer life of the members back in the late 30’s and early 40’s.  About this time was hen Hitler was making his big brags and when Pearl Harbor was attacked.  This was hard times for us at the end of the depression and our young boys were being drafted and some of them we did not see for a couple of years.  We banned together in prayer, Uncle Mont and Aunt Ella Burgin, Melvin, Garland, Mrs. Moffitt, Mrs. Sybil Knupp and all the others.  Uncle Mont was one that we loved to hear pray.  HE really knew how to talk to our Heavenly Father.  Out of the approximately 20 boys that went to war, two were taken as prisoner and were pretty sick when released, one was injured, but all returned home.  I still thank God today and give Him praise for hearing and answering our prayers.

This week, when the temperature dropped to the teens, I was especially thankful for a nice warm Church that we can have Sunday School in.  The old Church was not always comfortable enough, especially when we walked to church.  Gas and cars were scarce and expensive in those days.  I’m thankful for the spiritual blessings that God has given us through our Old and New Church.  Let’s take advantage of the opportunity to serve Christ and I personally want to thank God for the way He has blessed me and my family by being borned in a community where we could receive His Word and teachings so freely.

Davis, Lydia & Martha

I am trying to find some information about the McDowell County poor Farm/Alms house. It may have been in Higgins Township. I am looking for their cemetery or death information on their residence.

I am interested in a Lydia & Martha Davis that lived there in 1900. Martha also lived there in 1910. Her deth record states she died in 1913 & is buried at the Poor farm.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,  Norman Davis


  • June 23, 1900 Census, McDowell Co., NC, Marion, County poor home, House 262-263
  • Lyda Davis, Pauper, F, W, March 1835, 65, Single, NC, NC, NC; Martha Davis, Pauper, W, F, May 1855, Single, NC, NC, NC
  •  April 29, 1910 Census, McDowell Co., NC, Higgins Twp., Page 139, House 46-47
  • Martha Savis, F, W, 47, Single, Pauper, NC, NC, NC.
  • Note: Living in the McDowell County Poor home.
  •  Death Certificate: Martha Davis, b. age 50, d. Dec. 28, 1913, Higgins, McDowell Co., NC. Residence: Inmate of County Home. Burial: County Home. Father: Logan Davis. Mother not listed. (Female, White) Informant: Joseph England, Marion, NC. Recorded: March 27, 1914. Note: There was another death certificate that was not complete with death as Dec. 28, 1914.