Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Mildred P. Carter Bess

In the photo, Mildred Bess is on the far right (seated on the ground).
Mildred P. Carter Bess was born in August 1895 to Ed and Willie Carter. For most, if not all, of her life she lived in the Lewisburg District of Greenbrier County. She appears on the 1900, 1910, and 1920 censuses at Lewisburg, GC. She was the wife of Forrest Bess. She was a member of the John Wesley Methodist Church (and she donated to the church at least one of the two pictures that are placed on each side of the altar). She died in 1985 and she is buried at the Lewisburg Cemetery. (There are two historically Black cemeteries in Lewisburg, GC. The oldest is the Old Colored Cemetery which is now known as the Dick Pointer Cemetery. This cemetery is in the middle of town near Carnegie Hall. The other is the Lewisburg Cemetery. This cemetery is a short distance from the center of town)
Mildred Bess was undoubtably one of Lewisburg's more famous citizens as she was a competent psychic/clarivoyant/fortune teller.
Information about the life of Mildred Carter Bess can be found:
(1) in the W.V. Division of Culture and History site in the form of her husband's death certificate (WV Death Certificate # 11071)
(2) in the following issues of the Journal of the Greenbrier Historical Society (GHS)
-- Vol 2, # 1, page 33
-- Vol 7, # 3, 2001, pages 58 & 59
-- Vol 7, # 5, 2003, p. 93
(3) in the papers of Dr. Montgomery (which are housed at the GHS)
(4) in BLACK RESIDENTS OF GREENBRIER, MONROE, POCAHONTAS AND SUMMERS COUNTIES by Carol Haynes (which can be found at the GHS at Lewisburg, W.V. Division of Culture and History at Charleston, Amistad in New Orleans, & Drain Jordan Library, W.V. State University)
(5) in the Perkins Family History (which can be obtained from the GHS)

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