Jessie May Roper on the family’s Dysartsville farm
Jessie May Roper Groves was a child in the East Marion mill village, lived on a farm in Dysartsville, worked as a cook on a Mississippi river boat and can trace her lineage back to Sir Thomas More. She also loves a good ghost story. In this segment, she tells the story of the ghost of John Allen. (A written version of this tale was featured in Stories Not Told in History Books, compiled by Nina Greenlee.)
This audio montage is a small sampling of the great stories and remembrances we are currently collecting from residents all over McDowell County. We’ve heard stories of the Cherokee, the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, the building of the railroad, the Great Depression and other historical events. But mostly, we’ve heard stories of how real people lived their daily lives in the times before every convenience was available at the flick of a switch or at the push of a button. Remembrances of a time when folks relied on the land around them for their food, helped their neighbors and knew how to make just about everything they needed. It is the story of self-reliance and a strong community. It’s a spirit that lives on in the residents of McDowell County to this day.
Interviewer Kim Clark and sound man John Orr talk with Mr. and Mrs. Harold McCurry following their video session at Spring House Farm (the old Albertus Ledbetter home) in the Montford Cove Community.
Listen to this montage of McDowell County voices here: