September 28, 2014

Eliza J. Kirby Coffey

"In Memoriam.

"The subject of this sketch, wife of our esteemed townsman, Mr. Geo. E. Coffey was born in Caldwell on the 9th day of July, 1882 and died at her home in Blowing Rock on the morning of Sunday the 30th day of January, 1916, leaving, beside her mother, Mrs. Kirby, and her husband, four children as follows:  Ollie May 12 years, Ralph Sylvester 9, James Luther 7, and Eula Deal 4.  Mrs. Coffey, up to the 25th of October 1914, enjoyed perfect health, but, suffering from a stroke of paralysis at that time and from several subsequent strokes, her strength gave way and though all that medical skill could do was done for the good woman, she succumbed at last to the inevitable and, though she seemed better on Saturday, cheerful and even attempted to walk, something she had no done for over a year, the final, fatal stroke came that night and before the dawning of another Sabbath Day the soul had taken its flight.

"Mrs. Coffey joined the Second Adventist Denomination at Patterson in 1899, married George E. Coffey on the 22nd day of September, 1901 at Grove, Caldwell county and moved to Blowing Rock soon afterward.  She always looked on the bright side, even in her moments of suffering saying 'it was all for the best,' was a devoted wife and affectionate mother and dutiful daughter, had strong faith in Christ, her Saviour, and 'believed firmly in the Resurrection of the Dead and hoped to meet her dear ones in Paradise.'

"The funeral, as noted last week, was held by her pastor, Rev. Eber Gragg of Foscoe, the Reformed church not able to hold the people who came to pay the last sad tribute to her memory, though the day was most inclement, Mr. Gragg most impressively pointing to the 1st and 2d Resurrections and bidding his hearers prepare for it by rising from their sins hero and watching for the Eternal Dawn."

"The three doctors who attended Mrs. Coffey during her long illness, Doctors Brooks of Blowing Rock, Perry of Valle Cruces and Mordecai of Blowing Rock have the deep gratitude of the family and so have all the kind friends and neighbors who were most kind and considerate during it all.  God bless them!

"Mrs. Coffey's favorite text will close this sketch which is written by a friend of the family but which he feels is but feeble tribute.

""Instead of the throne shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come the myrtle tree; and it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not cut off.  Isaiah 55:13.  W. R. Savage Blowing Rock, N. C.""

Source: W. R. Savage, "In Memoriam," Obituary, Watauga Democrat, Boone, Watauga Co., NC, 10 February 1916, Death of Mrs. George E. Coffey; On-line Archive ( : viewed 28 September 2014); University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library, Chapel Hill, NC. Watauga Democrat. (Boone, Watauga County, N.C.), 10 Feb. 1916. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. <>.

Geo. E. Coffey was George Edgar whose father is not known.  His mother was Margaret Anne Kincaid who was a daughter of Milton and Abigail Bristol Kincaid of Burke Co., NC.

In addition to the four children listed above, there was another child, a son, born Nov. 2, 1914 and believed to have died at birth or shortly thereafter.

The other children: Ollie Mae, born Mar. 15, 1903, died Oct. 10, 1962 at Charlotte, Mecklenburg Co., NC, married Fred A. Boger.

Ralph Sylvester, born Aug. 13, 1905, died Nov. 19, 1989, buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in Blowing Rock, NC.

James M., born Jul. 27, 1908, died in Lenoir, Caldwell Co. on Feb. 4, 1933, married a lady named Ethel.

Ola Deal, born Feb. 7, 1912, died Jul. 7, 1999 in Blowing Rock; married Charles William Craig, born Mar. 28,1910 in Watauga Co.

Margaret Anne "Maggie" Kincaid had been married on Feb. 6, 1860 to William Elbert Coffey in Burke Co. and appeared there with him through the 1900 census.  William died in Morganton, Burke Co., in 1912.  Their last child was a daughter also named Margaret, born on Jan. 20, 1880.  George was born in 1883, well before William Elbert Coffey died.  However, George's death certificate does not name a father and instead wrote "illegitimate" in that place.

After Eliza died in 1916, George married Pearl White in 1918, Catawba Co., NC.  That was also Pearl's second marriage.  Her first husband was John L. Kirby who died in Mecklenburg Co., NC of Paresis on July 31, 1917, a month and a few days after their marriage on Jun. 3, 1917.

George died on Apr. 15, 1931 in Blowing Rock and was buried there at Mount Bethel.  I have not yet found Pearl's death date or burial site.  She and George had at least two sons, Edgar B. and Roy Edward "Pete" Coffey.

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