The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

The Mail Box - May, 1992

Issue: May, 1992

Dear Susan,
The Halbrook and Adcocks in Stokesdale [North Carolina] are fine.

Your Mountain Laurel about Smyth County, Virginia was awaiting me when I returned from Marion and Smyth County when I attended the Marion College Reunion (June 12, 13, 14).

The first thing I did upon arriving was just to ride all over Marion and a good part of Smyth County, covering almost all your tour and much more. It was wonderful to return to such a lovely place and renew friendships.

So, please continue my friendship with The Mountain Laurel with the enclosed renewal.


Nell Adcock
Stokesdale, North Carolina

Dear Readers,
My mother's family, the Halbrooks (also spelled Holbrook) were from Stokesdale, North Carolina, and I still have relatives living there. When I attended a family wedding last fall, I was surprised and happy to meet subscribers to The Mountain Laurel. It's a small world, and when I meet such nice people, a very pleasant one as well.

Susan Thigpen, Editor

Dear Ms. Thigpen,
Enclosed you will find my renewal subscription for your thoroughly enjoyable newspaper - so dedicated as it is, to preserving the past memories. Aren't they wonderful!! I read and re-read and sometimes I have "loaned" my copies to a mid-school teacher who lives and teaches in South Seattle, who is from Roanoke, Virginia. She used them in her class on occasion.

I wrote to you once in the past few years regarding tracing my ancestors. Well, I did find a great person who "led" me back in time - of my Gilmer side of my family to Lebanon, Virginia primarily, where whole lots of Gilmers still live and there is a monument there depicting some of their hardships in early years. I found these people who did the checking for me through your Mountain Laurel and the Historical Society in Abingdon, Virginia.

Thanks once again,

V. Julian
Marysville, Washington

Dear Susan Thigpen,
Enclosed is renewal for another year's subscription to The Mountain Laurel. I look forward to getting mine, and read every word. I count myself a hillbilly as I was born in the mountains of Tennessee. I'm now 65 years old and can relate to most of the stories in The Mountain Laurel

I was born to W.H. Latham and Esther Mae Vaughn Latham in 1927, married Carl Fennell in 1948. He and I had two sons, Jim and John. Carl died in July of 1974 so I'm a widow now living alone in a high rise apartment building. My son John lives in Virginia now, but he's in northeastern part near D.C. My oldest son, Jim, is a Baptist minister and lives in Cochran, Georgia, not to far from here. I have 5 very sweet grandchildren.

I pray that you can keep your printing of The Mountain Laurel going, as I enjoy it very much and pass it on to friends.

God bless,

E.S. Fennell
Macon, Georgia

Dear Mt. Laurel,
I just want to tell you how much I enjoy Mt. Laurel. You see, my mother Lucy Ann Stanley lived in Patrick County. My Grandfather John Stanley was sheriff of Patrick County.

Well I finally found someone with the same birthday as mine, September 14th. I am just 84 though. My cousin Ruby Stanley married a Quesenberry and I heard my mother speak that name. Hope to hear from someone who knows the Stanley's.


Irene Cassade
1747 S Scales Street
Reidsville, North Carolina 27330

Susan Thigpen,
Love and enjoy your paper. Keep up the good work.

I am now completely retired and I try to spend as much time as I can at my place in Patrick Springs, Virginia.


P.O. Poole
Patrick Springs, Virginia

Dear Readers,
Mr. Poole has been a subscriber to The Mountain Laurel practically from the first issue. Since 1983, he has written from time to time and sent along humorous cards which we enjoyed very much. At the time he started subscribing, he had Ivy Room Catering in Durham, North Carolina. He is one of the people who truly make us feel as though our subscribers are "our family of readers."

Susan Thigpen, Editor

The Heritage of Wise County and the City Of Norton book committee is making an effort to reach every resident, former resident, and all families with roots in Wise County, to ask them to submit their family history to be published in 1993. Stories of 500 words and one picture will be printed FREE for each household. Also, if your ancestors were in Wise County by or before 1900, you may submit a free 500-word story and picture. Our book will also contain stories of all towns and communities in the county and their beginnings, churches, schools, clubs, businesses, tributes and memorials. Deadline for submitting articles for the book is September 30, 1992.

You may also order a copy of the book now at the pre-published price of $41.50, if picked up in Wise (includes VA tax), or $45.00 shipped to your address (includes $3.50 postage and handling and tax). Send histories and orders to: WISE COUNTY HERITAGE BOOK COMMITTEE, PO Box 368, Wise, VA 24293. For further information concerning the book, you may call Dorothy Witt, Chairman, at (703) 328-9768.