The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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Heart of the Blue Ridge

Growing Up On Tuggles Creek - The Family Reunion

By YKW © 1983-2012

Issue: September, 1983

the family reunionVictoria Blackard Shelor, Joseph Bishop Blackard, Virginia Blackard Reynolds, Susan Blackard Shelor. This photograph was taken at the family reunion. Wayne Blackard couldn't be present when this picture was taken.One summer (perhaps it was about 1911) a family we had never heard of appeared to stay about a month with us. She told she was our cousin Coogie Robins from somewhere in West Virginia. With her was her daughter, Morill and a young boy named Esau.

They had come to claim their share of the Tom DeHart estate, a man who had a big fine house and lots of land. It was a terrific burden on my mother to feed and wait on them for so long but she bore it bravely.

Dad thought cousin Coogie should be royally entertained so he got up a reunion and picnic at the Old Place out near Mountain View.

There was so much ado about food and preparing travel arrangements. Of course Cousin Coogie and family got to ride in the two seated surrey drawn by our best team. One of our tenants was her driver. I deeply resented this for our family had to travel in an ox drawn wagon.

I only remember that there was a big crowd there, many relatives I had never seen. There must have been plenty of food and drinks were brought from the old spring below the hill. Everybody wandered around the old log cabin and the big house my father had built for my mother as his bride.

All I could think about was riding home in that ox wagon.

For all that I believe, Cousin Coogie received as her part of the DeHart estate, the magnificent sum of two dollars!