Robert Lee Woodward (1A1L6)
Page 68A of Descendants of Captain Henry Woodward
Written by Robert Lee Woodward (1A1L6)
"When early settlers came to Lee County, Virginia, Sugar Run Creek was named because of the amount of sugar trees on it. The early settlers made sugar and syrup from the trees that were the only source of sweets. They learned this from the Indians. It takes eight gallons of water to make a pound of sugar. They used troughs to catch the sap in. They used buck-eye trees to make the troughs as it was soft wood and would not crack. They used elders to make spiles to catch the sap in and used gourds for dippers. They made their own barrels to haul the sap in and used wooden hoops to hold the barrels TOGETHER. They also made their wooden buckets to carry water in - they were called piggens. They used horse and sled to haul the sap to where they boiled it down. And used copper kettles to boil the sap down. My father, Alexander F. Woodward told me they sometimes had as much as seven hundred pounds of sugar. One spring they had to make it most in sugar because they had no vessels to put the syrup in.
My grandmother Woodward killed two deer without a gun, the first one was in the creek. She went down and seen it there and jumped astride it, rammed its nose into the water until it drowned. She was a very large and strong woman. The hounds ran the other one into the barn lot, where she slipped up and grabbed it by the hind legs and held it until the children brought her an axe and she killed it with the axe.
They raised thirteen children. I was born on the south side of Sugar Run Creek not far away from grandmothers. I used to go down and stay all night with her. My grandfather passed away before I was born. I was born Nov 2, 1873. My father sold out there in 1881 to John Yearly. He brought his money in little sacks, every dollar in gold coin. We moved to Harrison County, Missouri in the spring of 1881. We moved back to Tennessee then in the spring of 1883."Page 96
"I was born Nov. 2 1873, in Lee County, Virginia. My father Alexander F. Woodward, moved our family to Harrison county, Missouri in the spring of 1881. He sold our 160 acre farm in Virginia to John Yearly. Our family settled in a small town known as Lorraine, located nine miles north of Bethany, Missouri. At that time it was a town with Masonic hall, hardware, grocery store, two churches, (one a South Methodist), post office, mill and livery barn. At this time only a cemetery remains as a landmark. James Crawford my youngest brother, died and is buried in this cemetery.
In 1883 my father moved our family by train to Claibourn county, Tennessee. We boarded the train at Ridgeway, Missouri. Tennessee was my home until 1899, when my brother William and I came to Missouri in a one horse buggy. Nearly 30 days were required to make the trip. When lodging was secured in a country home a charge of 25 cents was made for a nights lodging for two, with two meals furnished and also feed for the horse.
I again settled in Harrison county, where I met and married Susan Bertha Ragan, daughter of William Leonidis Ragan and Rebecca Hester (Koger) Ragan of near Hatfield, Missouri.
William Ragan was a native of Blount county, near Morgington, Tenn. Both Mr. and Mrs. Ragan were faithful Christians, raising their family to respect and honor God. Their home was a haven for all true minister of the Gospel. Through their donation of a plot of ground and their money, labor and time, the church of Arrington was established. It was also used as a schoolhouse but a clause in the deed stated the doors were never to be closed to church services. When established it was a Presbyterian church, and later to United Brethren.
So long as my wife and I lived there the church doors were never closed. My wife Susan, attend eight years of school there and all of our five children except the youngest received their eighth grade diplomas from this school.
We are both members of this church, first as Presbyterians, then Methodist and later United Brethren. Our home, too, was always open to ministers and their families. Rev. James and Rev. Elbert Ragan, uncles of my wife, held many meetings in this place. Also a cousin of mine, Rev. A.P. Mathis, was a pastor of this church. Many glorious revivals were held there and members of my family accepted Christ in this humble little schoolhouse. Though the building yet stands in 1957, its doors were soon closed to church services after my family moved away.
I was converted in Monroe county, Tennessee and later joined the South Methodist church at Hiawatha college. Rev. Lowery was pastor. Later transferring to Arrlinton, the above mentioned church, and in 1942 Susan and I moved our membership to the Matkins Methodist church, near our farm home.Signed: R. L. Woodward"
Robert Woodward, 88, Died Monday in His Bethany Home Robert L. Woodward, 88 dies at his home Monday. He was born in Lee county, Va. He farmed in Harrison county many years before retiring. He was a member of the Matkins church. Mr Woodward was the last survivor of 10 children in the family. Surviving are his wife, Bertha, of the home: three daughters, Mrs. Clarence Crabtree and Mrs. Ed Hahn, of Bethany, and Mrs. Oran Fletchall, Stanberry: two sons, William Woodward, Chanron, Neb., and Harold Woodward, Bethany. Services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Thursday in the Methodist church in Bethany, with the Rev. Porter Hopkins officiating. Burial will be in the Miriam Cemetery.