3rd Annual Crotts Family Reunion

Received notice today of the next Crotts Reunion sent to me by Tim Crotts (tcrotts001@carolina.rr.com).

October 24, 2015 at 12 noon
at St. Paul Baptist Church, 337 Hull Road, Casar, NC

Once again, our family will get together at St. Paul Baptist Church in Casar for our annual Crotts family reunion. This is where a number of Crotts’ who lived and farmed in the 1800’s and last century in Cleveland County attended church and are buried. In fact, this community encompasses the area just south of Casar located on Crooked Run Creek (about 2 miles away) where our ancestor Valentine Crotts settled in the late 1700’s, and the Crotts family cemetery remains today.

The date is Saturday, October 24th. The event will be in the Fellowship Hall and we plan to eat around noon. We are asking that each family bring a covered dish or two (pot luck) to share with everyone.Drinks, plates and silverware will be provided.

Any one that would like to come early to browse around the cemetery is welcome. Someone will have the fellowship hall open by 10:30 am. After the meal and a time of fellowship, anyone that would like to can go on a “field trip” to visit the Crotts Family Cemetery, which is located on a farm nearby. The property is owned by the Floyd Williams family, who most graciously watch over our family’s resting places. There are about 20 to 30 graves located at this site, which I feel confident includes Valentine Crotts, his wife and their descendants.

In addition, we will have a “memory table” and if you would like, please bring old photos and family heirlooms to share with other family members.

Everybody is welcome to attend the church service the next day at St. Paul, which starts at 11:00 a.m. There’s also a Sunday evening service at 6:00 pm. The Crotts family could sit together and be recognized at that time.

Look forward to seeing you!!! If you have questions, please feel free to contact Tim Crotts at 704-692-3201 or tcrotts001@carolina.rr.com

Published in: on September 27, 2015 at 1:49 am  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , , , , ,

Crotts Cemetery Reunion A Success

Crotts reunion2 Crotts reunion

As you saw posted on this blog last week, a Valentine Crotts reunion was held on Saturday the 29th. I did not get to attend, but I asked a friend, Dru Tiliakos, who came all the way from Orlando, Florida to visit Crotts cousins and attend the reunion about it and she responded. Sounds like it went very well, Tim. Here is how Dru responded:

“Tim is a lot of fun and was very warm and loving. We had plenty of food, no rain and a beautiful deck overlooking the large spring pond fed by three springs. The cemetery is just across the pond on the rise behind the deck. We all walked across a sort of foot log bridge and up the slope to the cemetery after the meal.

The cemetery is in terrible condition, overgrown with brambles, bushes and trees, not to mention leaves. Only two stones we could identify whose graves they were..Young John Crotts, confederate soldier…this would be a son of Emanuel Sr I’m sure. Then near him is John H. Crotts…I think this is probably another son of Valentine JR. Other than that, they are marked with just rocks. But there are about thirty graves Tim said. So now Tim is planning cleanups for the next two or three Saturdays and they’re going to clear it all out so we can find the graves. It’s a shame it was abandoned so long. The farm owner and his family were so nice and came over to meet us. He’s very accommodating. Floyd Williams is his name.

On Sunday, we attended St. Paul’s Baptist Church, met some folks there including Max Cooke who talked to me quite a bit. I wished I could have had more time to visit with others. The pastor stayed and talked quite awhile with us. I took a brief walk through the cemetery and looked at a lot of Crotts and Cook stones. It’s a pretty church and we enjoyed the services. I spoke a few words to the congregation too which was nice. You mentioned Mike’s voice…well when we were singing the hymns, the lady in front of me turned around and whispered, “You all need to join our choir!” I got a kick out of that as I never think of myself as being a good singer although I can follow a good leader and have sung in choirs before. My husband sings in his Greek choir every Sunday and has natural talent anyway.

Later in the evening we went to dinner at the Golden Corral with Rick Blanton and his wife. It was just like being with old friends. On Monday, we decided to come on home. My husband was anxious to get home and back to his routines so we got home about five pm yesterday.

Yes I met all the folks you mention and had a chance to talk with Martha quite a bit. I gave her my phone and email as she may not have had the more recent ones.”

The note below is one sent to those who attended the reunion by Tim Crotts and I think he has started a wonderful project — that of cleaning us the cemetery.

Subject: Crotts Family Picnic and Reunion

Hey Folks,
I’d like to thank everyone who came out for the first annual Crotts Family Picnic and Reunion at the site of the home place of Valentine Crotts, and the Crotts family cemetery.

I think it was a real success with 23 people in attendance. It was a thrill to have 4 great, great grandchildren of Valentine Crotts and Elizabeth Bumgarner Crotts present with us: Virginia Buff Scruggs, Frank Buff and Martha Ann Self Hamrick and Dru Tiliakos.

The weather was great and the food was fantastic! I think we should designate the last Saturday of October as the date for this event. Therefore, please reserve on your calendar, October 25th, 2014 for this celebration of our family, and spread the word to everyone that’s related.

For anyone that can, please come out this Saturday, November 2, at 9:00 to help clean up the cemetery. As you could see, it has been neglected for many years. Bring your chain saw, bush axe, sling, weedeater, rakes, etc. We owe it to our ancestors to preserve their final resting place. Until next time, take care and God bless you. Timothy Wade Crotts   tcrotts001@carolina.rr.com

Crotts reunion2Crotts reunion

I specifically want to thank the owner of that property, Floyd Williams, for making the cemetery accessible and letting the family help take care of it. We realize the tremendous work it is in keeping the cemetery clean. You are commended for allowing the descendants of Valentine Crotts to come and have a memorial celebration each year at their graves. Thanks so much! We need more citizens who realize the need to be able to return to the grave sites of their folk.

Rich Mountain Cemetery Adventure

Rich Mountain Cemetery Cook, Elizabeth HudsonSain, Dianne at Rich Mtn Cemetery Sain, Gene at Rich Mtn Cemetery  Rich Mountain Cemetery_edited-1

On Sunday March 5, 2000, my husband Gene and I took off in our old Suburban to try and find an old cemetery up in the South Mountains. You see, Gene had stumbled over some old gravestones while deer hunting some 30 years ago up there. He said he can’t remember even looking for names on the stones. Guess he just figured he wouldn’t know them anyway. Several weeks ago, I was boring him with my genealogy research and told him about finding families of Edward Cook’s descendants all around the foot of the South Mountains. That’s when he told me about this old cemetery! Can you imagine how excited I got? It has been hard to wait these few weeks to go. The first Saturday after that it was raining; the second Saturday it was raining, but this Sunday it was perfect.

We began talking to our son, Jeff, about our trip. He rides the jeep trails on 4-wheelers and also 4-wheel drive vehicles with his friends. He informed us that the Enola entrance, as well as the Golden Valley entrance had been closed and the only way into these hills was off the Highway 64 entrance, which is about 5 miles north of Morganton. The road that goes all the way across from Morganton to Pine Mountain Lakes has always been known as the CCC road. This CCC stands for Civilian Conservation Corps.

Sunday morning we left home around 9:30 a.m. and made a stop in Morganton at Wal-Mart to see if we could find a good map of the area with the names of the little peaks etc. We did not find one there, but did find one which was somewhat helpful at the Ingles Supermarket nearby. We trekked on up Highway 64 to the Roper Hollow Road. This paved road turns into dirt about 1.4 miles from Hwy. 64. From there on up you will need a 4-wheel drive vehicle. It is very rocky! Also, try to pick a dry time to go, for there are deep mud holes. It is approximately 13 miles into the area of the cemetery. We stopped along the road around 11:30 to eat our picnic lunch, but someone had forgotten to get the bread! We ended up eating snack stuff instead of our roast beef and bologna. Gene had to really look the area over good to jog his memory about the area. He knew exactly where the little path was that would lead him over to that ridge. We parked the car, grabbed the camera, a piece of paper, and an ink pen and started walking. It was such a beautiful day with temperature around 70 degrees. As we walked down the path and we came upon an old hunting camp, which is no longer in use. Jeff says that the South Mountain Park bought them out. We crossed a little branch and walked along the trickling water for some distance. This area had a lot of old apple trees along it. These apple trees were one of the things that Gene remembered well. We then cut up across the mountain, climbing to the ridge line. He said we needed to just walk the ridge till we found it. He couldn’t remember just how far, but thought we were in the general area. He began to feel disheartened and said maybe he had just dreamed this etc. We kept walking, but stopped to rest every now and again. As I looked up in the distance, I could see a fence. I said, “They’ve fenced it in.” He looked again and said, “Yes, that’s it!” He told me later that at first he thought the campers had probably built a corral for their horses, because there wasn’t a fence around it when he had been there before.

I can’t tell you the excitement of finding this cemetery. I would have been happy to find it even if there wasn’t a Cook buried there. But I crossed over the fence and focused on two stones on the upper end, which read: “Riley Cook and Elizabeth Cook.” I couldn’t help but shed some tears. I told Gene there were cold chills running over my skin. I counted the graves that I could see the soap stones for. There were 35 that I could count. Riley and Elizabeth’s were the only two I could see any writing on. There were several pine trees fenced in and there was a small grove of rhododendron on the graves. I only wish I had taken some flowers up there with me. The fence was made of 6 x 6 pine posts with 2 rails all way around the perimeter. It was very, very neat and I believe it had not been built many years. I would like to meet the person who built that fence. Perhaps he could tell me more about this family. We made quite a few pictures, and wrote down the information from the stones. This was the information on the stones:

Riley Cook, June 14, 1845, Dec 24, 1915
Elizabeth, wife of Riley Cook, Born, July 27, 1849, Died, April 12, 1925.

We spent some time there talking about why Riley might have settled there. We wondered where he farmed, for we saw nothing that looked like cleared land from the past, nor any old home place around. He probably got his water from that little branch we talked about earlier. Maybe he didn’t live up there. Maybe he just lived in Enola and came up from that side, which would only have been 4 or 5 miles and requested to be buried there. We wondered who else was buried in that cemetery. We were full of questions and no answers.

We went back down the mountain more excited than when we went up. I asked Gene to go over to the Enola section to see if we could find Pleasant Hill Baptist Church where Riley’s brother Eli was buried, along with some of his family. We, indeed, found it and compared the inscriptions with those of Bill Floyd. I snapped a couple of pictures here also. Next we followed the Enola road out to the Watershed Road. The road was not blocked off, so we continued up the mountain. We were able to go nearly to the top before the road was cabled off. We are not sure just how close we were to reaching the area where the cemetery is located from that side.

I am really excited about finding this information. If you have any other information on the people buried at Rich Mountain or know any thing about its history, I would love to hear it.

Published in: on October 4, 2013 at 7:45 pm  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , , ,