The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

The Mail Box - December, 1986

Issue: December, 1986

Dear Readers,
In response to the letter printed in our November issue from Mrs. Augustson asking about where she could get a copy of the book "Floyd County, A History of its People." We have found that there are no more copies of the book available at this time.

However, a limited number of these books are being reprinted and will be available in the near future through The Olde Church Gallery, PO Box 41, Floyd, Va. 24091. You may write and be put on a waiting list.

Susan Thigpen, Editor

Dear Editor and Staff,
Recently, of all places, in my beauty shop, I picked up some reading material while under the dryer and found a copy of The Mountain Laurel. I didn't know such a publication existed. I thoroughly enjoyed it and the owner of the shop let me bring it home with me.

I want to tell you why it meant so much to me. I am a born and bred Virginian. I was born and raised in and around Abingdon in Washington County. My father was a local historian and writer of many columns at various times for the local papers there. I cut my teeth on Virginia history and feel very deeply rooted there even though I have lived in Georgia since 1946. I go back to my roots at least once a year even though most all the old folks are gone and I do not know too many people. Still those old, dear, mountains and hills have not changed and I can always breathe a little better once I've been back. This going back is a very real need in my life. I say "You can go Back" even though it's been said you can't. Those memories are forever engraved and I see things as they were as well as the way they are now.

Enclosed is a check in the amount of $8.00 for a years subscription. Please start it soon as I don't want to miss any more copies than I have to.

Another thing I want to add is the one (paper) I looked at Saturday had a feature on the Carter Family. My mothers' people were from area of the Carters over in Scott County. I grew up with Carter Family music too. That is Trail of The Lonesome Pine Country too, and I was named for June Tolliver the heroine in that book. So you can see even though I live down here in Georgia a lot of me seems to be roaming over the hills, up the hollers and around the mountains of Virginia's great southwest.


Mrs. C. F. Lee, Jr.
Kingston, GA. 30145

Dear Susan,
I learned about your publication from the Post Mistress of Meadows of Dan, Va. when I wrote her a letter of inquiry. My question, I'll address to you with the hope you or one of your readers might have knowledge for an answer.

Some months ago I obtained a Confederate Cover (a used postal envelope) addressed to Mrs. Delila L. Jessup and to Polly A. Smith, Meadows of Dan, Patrick County, Va. Beside the two cancelled Confederate stamps in the upper right hand corner at the other end of the cover are two penned lines neither of which is very legible. The best I can decipher this it appears to be the name of the letter writer which looks like "Mr. Wm. Barnard."

My inquiring is of course, have you any knowledge of Mrs. Jessup or Smith? Was there a Wm. Barnard from Meadows of Dan, Va. If so was he serving in the Confederate Army? Hopefully some of your neighbors or readers can shed light on this cover. It would certainly make it come alive and more interesting. You can see that collecting of early covers, many written before gummed stamps were used, is a branch of philately, one which permits those interested to delve in history.

I am a Virginian by birth, a graduate of Randolph-Macon College and a retired Naval Officer, who now lives in California but one who still enjoys the history of his native state and country.

Thank you for any information you may provide me.

I Am, Yours Truly,

Captain Leonard G. Hank
5633-C Lake Murray
La Mesa, California 92041

Dear Susan,
Your paper, The Mountain Laurel means a lot to me. As I read some of the stories, it takes me back in time when I was a little girl living among the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.

Another reason for this letter is to ask you if you are related to Jesse Thigpen that lived in Durham, NC during the 1960's. He was stationed at Fort Bragg, NC with the 82nd Air Force. My son-in-law Augusta (Lucky) Bohan was there at the same time and I believe they were both in Viet Nam at the same time. Lucky has lost touch with him along with lots of his other buddies. If you know his address or can help me, I sure would appreciate it and I'm sure it would mean a lot to "Lucky" too. Continued success to you and your staff for a most wonderful paper.


M. S. Carroll
Salem, Va.

P.S.: Please let us hear from you.

Dear Mrs. Carroll,
No, I'm not related to the man you mentioned, but I'm printing this in hopes that someone reading it might know of him.  Good Luck!

Susan Thigpen, Editor

The Laurel Foundation,
We are happy to contribute towards the startup costs of your effort to record the memories of the old-timers of your mountain region. There are many such opportunities, but you are doing something. Keep it up.

H. A. Eysenbach, Jr.
Winston-Salem, NC 27103

Dear Mountain Laurel,
Please send me Backroads Collection No. 1.

Someone borrowed my first copy and liked it and the tours so well that I just can't take it back. Thus I'm ordering myself another copy.


B. Pardue
Traphill, NC 28685