Friday, January 25, 2013


My blog has led another cousin whom I have never met to me,yea !!
This is Laura (second from left) she is my dad's sister Hattie's great granddaughter. I remember her mom (Janet) pictured second from right when we were younger.
When we were growing up we would go to Forest City to visit dad's sister and  three nieces who lived around there.
In this picture my dad's sister Hattie Beddingfield (second from right) with her three daughters from left Eula (Janet's mom), Ollie and Geneva.
I have very fond memories of all these ladies. Eula I remember always appealed to me as she was tall and had white hair that  was always perfectly groomed. Ollie was the funny one,always laughing and seemed so carefree. Geneva was the grandmotherly type and had the kindest eyes and always a smiling face.  All these ladies are now together again with their Heavenly Father.
This next photo is my dad (far right) in front of his 55 oldsmobile with  Janet as a young girl with her dad Rebon,mother Eula,Bobbie (Ollie's daughter) in front of Ollie and Hattie along with my dad's dog Jack waiting to see what my dad is getting from his pocket.
I have a copy of this picture but had no names except for dad and Hattie so now I know the rest.
She also sent me these pictures of my dad and mom sometime about mid 1981. In this first one my mom and dad are with Laura's family.
And this last one is just of my mom,Goldie and dad,Bob which must have been taken just about a month before he died. I am so glad to see these pics !
I am so grateful I started blogging as it has brought me so much joy over newly found relatives.

I need to find more time to research more and hopefully I can get some of that done and post more regularly on here.

Thursday, September 20, 2012


This blog has paid off for my quest for extended family once again.

This is a second cousin who lives in Dallas ,Texas named Kathleen.
She is the grandaughter of one of my dad's twin brothers, Cecil.
That is him on the right in this pic with his twin brother.

Cecil had 3 children, 2 boys and 1 girl. He and his wife Lois divorced and she took Dorothy the girl and he took Jack and Billy the boys.
Jack pictured here was unfortunately killed in the WW11 as a young unmarried man.

 No one really knows where Dorothy  spent her life or much about her at all. Kathleen did find out she had a daughter named Molly who is now married and lives in Texas.

This is Cecil's son named Billy who is Kathleen's father. He was a very handsome young man.

She came into town last Thursday September 13,2012 and her and her husband Paul came to visit. We talked non-stop for over 3 hours and probably could have for 3 more if it hadn't have gotten late. She looked through all the info I have and added some things where she could. All in all it was an amazing afternoon of conversation. Especially finding out how parallel our lives have been.
I was hoping to meet her sister Patricia the following day but time didn't allow that so hopefully since she lives closer, in Ohio we will be able to get together at another time.
My husband made the comment after they left that that was the first brown eyed ,red headed Pryor he had ever seen. Most of us have the icy blue eyes that trademark our ancesters.

This is another pic of Cecil (dad's brother) in his police uniform. A picture like this hung in our living room while I was growing up. He was the police chief in Asheville for several years.

This was a wonderful meeting and I cherish the memories that were made.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


One of my grandfather's brother's son's wife dies at the age of 83.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


While I am on the subject of cemeteries there has always been a question in my mind of where my father would have chosen his final resting place.
All his family are in this cemetery except 1 sister and 1 brother and they are in the cemetery where he is buried.His first wife and the love of his life is buried in his family row with room on either side I'm sure for my dad.
All my grandfather's wives are buried around him in this row.
This is my grandfather with the mother of all his children.
This is grandfather's wife with who he had no children.
We could have done the same thing with dad as he only had children by 1 wife.
I was pregnant with my first child when dad died and I was left out of all the decisions for the safety of my baby.
My mother and brothers made all these decisions. But now my oldest brother is asking himself the question of where dad really would have liked to be buried.
If only some of us had thought to ask him at some point but we all thought he would live forever I guess.
I feel he definitely would have liked to rest beside his parents and brothers and sisters as well as both wives.
Sorry dad but maybe the realization of this makes a little difference.
For my brother to have that realization lets me know that maybe he has come to terms with the selfishness in my mother.
Who spent her married life bitterly opposed to all my dad's relatives even visiting our home.
I was mad at her for a long time over this and felt so sorry for dad who did his visiting on his own without her and mostly accompanied by me.
But now I feel sorry for my mother as there must have been deep feelings of inadequateness and she must have known how badly my dad missed Dottie.
This came out when he was dying as he talked only of Dottie,who he nicknamed Bird, in his delirium shortly before he passed away.
I have been pondering this for a while now and thought maybe writing it down will help my mind pass on over it as there is nothing to be done at this point about it.
Except to say, "SORRY DAD ".

Thursday, October 7, 2010


As I visited the cemetery where most of my father's family is buried I had no trouble finding their graves.
It had been years since I had been there,in fact so long I can't remember why I was there before. All I could see in my memory was a big tree where these graves were. But I shouldn't have worried about finding them because as I walked up the steps into the cemetery I walked straight to them !!
As I looked at and read the tombstones I was overcome with emotion and couldn't fully understand why. I never knew any of these aunts and uncles or my grandmother or grandfather but I felt an empty ,achy heart when I thought how they must have lived and wished I would've known them. Many of them died at young ages,in fact my grandmother and grandfather witnessed the death of many of their children,what a horrible experience that would be to go through repeatedly.
Almost in tears I photographed all the stones, thinking about each one as I stood before it.This was one of the twins, my dad lived with him in Oklahoma for years,he was a lawyer.This is the other twin, he was a police chief in Buncombe County.
There is a story behind how the names are written on their stones. Actually their names were Williard Victor Pryor and William Cecil Pryor. Why the Williard was put on Cecil's stone no one living now knows and that is why there is just the W on Victor's stone.How painful it must have been to bury your 1 year old child !!I heard this uncles name often in stories my dad would tell,they were the younger brothers and were the closest for the period of Homer's short life.This is Homer's grave, one of his older sister's husband was a rock mason and layed this bed of rocks for him to lay in .I'm sure Aunt Winnie's husband did not expect to have to lay another rock bed only almost exactly 3 years later for his own beloved wife who died in childbirth with their first child. The little girl survived and lives today in West Virginia.This is the rock bed he made for her,I can only imagine all the tears that fell on these rocks as he lovingly smoothed each one.This is the stone that kept calling me back to it. I can't explain the strange pulling feeling I had when I stood before this grave. But it wasn't a scary feeling, it was a comforting almost peaceful feeling one that I didn't want to leave.
I have to go back to that cemetery and look around for more aunts that were buried with their husbands in other sections. I hope to get up there late this fall when the snakes go into hibernation as this is in a very poisonous snake filled area.
I still get a longing feeling when thinking about my deceased family, maybe because there is so few of us left in my generation.

Sunday, August 15, 2010


This post will be a continuation of the last to bring more information in the life of my grand parents. Below is a list of all their children, their birth and death dates, marriages and children. Also pasted to these are obituaries of grandmother and my father.
My grandparents made their first home on land in what is now known as Terry's Gap, they owned 100's of acres of land here. My dad and his first wife also made their first home on a part of this land. I remember my dad saying some of this land sold for 50 cents an acre. It is mountain land but I can't imagine a price that low. My cousin in West Virginia is the only one of the family who still owns any of this original homeplace. She still owns 100 acres.
The 2nd home place was located in Fruitland and I remember this old house. I spent many hours in it as my cousin's wife used to look after us for my parents when they needed a babysitter. The old house had a shiny tin roof and I remember the loud sound of rain pounding on that roof. My cousin and his wife lived here until the old house burned down. They built a new brick house in the same spot and it is still there although now we are wondering what will happen to that house as my cousin's daughter passed away last year before she could retire back to the old house from Georgia. This is grandpa Pryor standing on the front porch of the old house in Fruitland.In the above right picture grandpa and grandmother are standing on this same porch with some of their children,my father is the smallest boy in the picture.
The above left picture is my uncle Homer doing what he did best ! (enjoying the ladies)
In the lower left is grandpa and grandma with my Aunt Hattie and more of their girls.
Lower left photo is my uncle Victor with the administrator of his estate in Oklahoma. He must have known he was dying long enough to hire an estate administrator. He had no wife or children of his own.This is a closer picture of these 2, my Uncle Victor on the left (without tie) looks just like my father. He was one of the twins but everyone said he and my father could have been identical twins. If you notice the date on the bottom of the photo is November 1950 which means he Uncle Victor was already dead when this photo was developed.In the bottom photo in this collage is Uncle Victor's house in Claremore, Ok. He was a lawyer and a judge out there while running a ranch directly across the river from the Will Roger's Place.Here is some of the cattle on his ranch. The ranch is now under the waters of Lake Oologah on the Verdigris River.
The reason I know so much about this uncle is because my dad spent quite a few years out in Oklahoma running the ranch while his brother worked.
I remember all the stories he used to tell about driving cattle and riding cutting horses.
I wish I knew information like this on all my aunts and uncles.In one of his last pictures grandpa is with one of my 2 still living first cousins and her first child.
He wrote articles to the local paper quite a lot and here is one he wrote very late in his life.
As he expired he left a legacy which was remembered in this community I still live in for years

Monday, July 26, 2010


On October 4,1858 a daughter was born to the Rev. William Job Wilkie and his wife Margaret Reid Wilkie. They named her Martha Louise and she became my grandmother.Don't know what year this picture was taken but this is my great grandmother and grandfather.
They had 2 girls my grandmother Martha Louise and her sister Mary Jane (who was affectionately called "aunt Sam").
As documented in this page of history these 2 sisters married 2 brothers. I have imagined several scenarios as to how this might have come about and the best I one is I think back in those days travel was limited and opportunities to meet a wife or husband where probably limited. Since the time between when my grandparents married to the time their brother and sister married was over 2 years I believe this was opportunity knocking!
It is another interesting fact that they both were the parents of twins. But the births of twins in either family before this is not known at this time.

13 children were gifted to my grandparents,although many were taken away at early ages.
My cousin remembers at some point asking my grandmother why she wasn't crying with everyone else and her reply was " I've cried my share and I'm just all dried out". I can't imagine what it would have been like back in those days, to helplessly have to watch your children die of untreatable diseases.
At 81 years old at the time of her death she outlived 8 of her 13 children. And grandfather living to the ripe old age of 97 outlived 10 of his 13 children.Here is grandfather Richard Martin and grandmother Martha Louise Pryor and after all of the pain her life must have brought her she has the first smile on her face of anyone in these old photos !!!
At this time I only know of the twin girls that Uncle William Franklin and Aunt Mary Jane had. I am fairly certain they had more children because I remember my dad speaking of several double first cousins.
As my grandparents settled in one part of Henderson county and my uncle and aunt settled in another part of the same county.
So over the years 2 segments of Pryor's were formed,known as the Fruitland Pryors and the Bat Cave Pryors.
More on the life of my grandparents next time.