Smyrna church photo by Gerald Torrence

The Ellis Scrapbook


White County Historical Society 2002 White County Heritage


These newspaper clippings contain information about notable early residents of White County.   The articles were found in the personal effects of Rubie Neelly Ellis by Dorothy Yarnell (Mrs. Frank) Warden of Searcy.   Mrs. Ellis was the sister of Mrs. Warden’s grandfather, Robert A. Neelly.                    


  Dr. J.B. Grammer Called By Death - Well-known Physician and Prominent Businessman For Many Years The citizens of Searcy and of White county were deeply grieved yesterday afternoon when the sad intelligence announcing the death of Dr. John B. Grammer [May 25, 1862 – October 12, 1913] was learned.  The end came after a brief illness from neuralgia of the heart. This excellent citizen was one of White county’s best physicians.  He did as much as any other citizen for the commercial and religious advancement of this community, where he has spent the major portion of his life… Dr. Grammer was 51 years of age on the 25th of last May and for more than a quarter century has practiced his profession in this section, first at Center Hill before removing to Searcy 20-odd years ago...  He was a steward of the First Methodist church, president of the Searcy Commercial Club, vice president of the Bank of Searcy, and county health officer.  Dr. Grammer was a graduate of the Illinois School of Electro-Therapeutics in the class of 1907, and a post-graduate at the Medical School and Hospital of Chicago.  He is survived by his wife [Minnie Horton Grammer, July 21, 1868 – September 19, 1949] and two daughters and a host of sorrowing relatives and friends.  Funeral services were conducted at the Methodist church this afternoon at 2:30 by Rev. R.C. Morehead and C. Godden.  Burial in Oak Grove Cemetery.  


In Memoriam

Ella D. Ellis was born in Marshall county, Mississippi, April 24, 1885, was married to John S. Lanier Dec. 4, 1872, at Center Hill, Ark., where she lived until God called her home Nov. 17, 1914.  She became a Christian in early life and united with the Methodist church… She was afflicted of paralysis.  She was patient in her afflictions...  Her funeral was conducted by the writer in the presence of a large congregation in Smyrna church Sunday, Oct. 18, 1914, and she was laid to rest in the Smyrna cemetery.  Mrs. Lanier died at her home at Center Hill … from the effects of a second stroke of paralysis.  She is survived by her husband and a number of children.


Death of R. Wilbur Carnes

Mr. Wilbur Carnes died at the residence of his uncle R.A. Neely this morning [June 9, 1915] after an illness since Monday morning.  Mr. Carnes was at work at his desk in Mr. Neely’s store when he was stricken with appendicitis and was carried home.  His suffering was very intense until the end.  Mr. Carnes was [born Sept. 27, 1891] a young man of promising ability… He was married to Miss Lucille Trimble last April 18… His father lives at Stonewall, Oklahoma. [Burial at Oak Grove cemetery.]


Mrs. Pettey Dead

Mrs. Jennie Pettey, aged 65, many years a resident of Searcy, died at her home in Russellville [Jan. 20, 1915] after an illness of several months.  Her body will be brought to Searcy tomorrow for interment in Oak Grove cemetery.  The remains will be accompanied by her only surviving son, Mr. Pierce Pettey, a prominent businessman of Russellville.  Deceased was the widow of N.B. Pettey, who for two terms was sheriff and collector of White county and one of this section’s best citizens.  Several relatives of Mrs. Pettey reside in Searcy.


Card of Thanks

We wish to thank all who thoughtfully and tenderly administered in any way to our dear wife, mother, grandmother and sister in her illness and death…

B.S. Horton, (Mrs.) J.B. Grammer and children, A.J. Martin, wife and children, B.P. Horton, wife & son, sisters and brothers.


In Memoriam

Alma Dobbins Hart was born July 8, 1874, departed this life July 15, 1911.  She was 37 years and 7 days old.  She… was a consistent member of Smyrna church… She was the eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. G.W. Dobbins.  She was married to H.P. Hart on Nov. 4, 1896, of which union was born to them two sweet girls and two sweet boys, of which one girl and the two boys and husband still survive her. 


Estimable Young Lady

Miss Helen Peebles, 16 years old, and the only child of Mr. and Mrs. O.W. Peebles, died at the home of her parents on East Race street [July 8, 1915]… following a brief illness from diabetes. Burial at Oak Grove.

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Mrs. Thomas B. Ellis, sr., died Aug. 17, 1899, at her home near Center Hill.  The deceased was an aunt of Mrs. Dr. J.W. Fuller and Mrs. J.H. Query of this city.


Pioneer Citizen Drops Dead

This morning Esq. L.W. Dickey died suddenly from heart failure in the northwestern part of this city.  He is the official of the city whose duty it is to enforce the law against stock running at large inside the corporate limits.  He had a lively chase in the early forenoon trying to catch a cow that was at large and got very warm.  After this chase he went home and was supposed to be in a perfectly normal condition… After this experience with the cow he hitched up his horse and buggy and took the family clothes to the wash woman.  After having delivered them he asked for a drink of water and it was handed to him in a gourd.  He drank it and remarked that the water was warm and immediately dropped dead from apoplexy or heart failure.  Physicians were summoned but the belief prevailed that death was instantaneous.  Mr. Chandler removed the remains to his home on East Race street and prepared it for interment.  His death occurred at the home of Charley Turner, colored, about 9 a.m.  Internment will take place at Oak Grove tomorrow at 10:30. Rev. G.P. Fikes, assisted by Rev. Herbert Forest, will conduct the last sad rites.



Lewis Walker Dickey was born in Greenville, S.C., Feb. 1847, and died the 16th of June [1919].  He was a Confederate soldier, and belonged to the 69th North Carolina mounted infantry.  He professed Christ at Smyrna M.E. church and… was elected Sunday school superintendent and steward. He served the church in that official capacity for several years.  He was married to Miss [Roberta A.] “Bobbie” Ellis of the Smyrna Valley community in 1871.  To this union five children were born, only two of whom survive, Mrs. Maude Dabney of Searcy and Mrs. Lambert of Carlisle with their widow mother. He loved his church, always present at the service when possible.

--His pastor, G.P. Fikes



Thomas Booth Ellis was born in Limestone county, Alabama, in 1820, removed first with his parents to Mississippi, and from that state to Arkansas in 1854 and settled at the present Ellis home near Center Hill.  He professed religion in early life in Mississippi and joined the Methodist church, in which he lived a consistent member for about 50 years.  He was married first in 1843, again in 1851, and to his now surviving wife in 1860.  There were ten children, of whom 7 are now living.  Mr. Ellis died April 23, 1898, and was buried the following day… A long procession followed his body to the Smyrna cemetery.  Bro. Ellis was among the very old members of the Smyrna church and for long years had been a respected and leading citizen of his county. 


Mrs. G.A. Dannelly Dead

After a brief illness from the first and second strokes of paralysis, Mrs. G.A. [Fannie Pettey] Dannelly died at her home in this city March 16 at age 68 years, 1 month and 10 days.  Deceased was born in Mississippi Feb. 6, 1843 and moved to White county in the early ‘50s.  She was a sister of the late N.B. Pettey, ex-sheriff of White county.  In November 1859, she was married to Mr. Sam Critz, who later died.  On Jan. 27, 1887, she was married to Rev. Geo. A. Dannelly.  Previous to her first marriage, Miss Pettey joined the M.E. church, South.  In either 1856 or 1857, and she was ever a consistent member of that denomination.  For many years she has had the constant care and attention of an invalid husband.  Mrs. Dannelly leaves a husband, a son Mr. John G. Critz, three granddaughters, Miss Eileen Critz, Mrs. E.E. Jones and Miss Estelle Grammer, and a nephew, Mr. Pierce Pettey.  The funeral e will be held tomorrow.  Dr. John H. Dye and Rev. R.O. Morehead will conduct the last sad rites. 


D.S. Goodloe Succumbs

Mr. David S. Goodloe, one of the most substantial citizens of White county, Confederate soldier and pioneer developer, died at Quitman, Cleburne county [March 3, 1916], after an illness of several days.  Deceased was [born Nov. 10, 1837].  Funeral services were conducted at Bethesda, his old home, two miles south of Rose Bud, today.  Mr. Goodloe was a native of Virginia but came to White county previous to 1852, was the son of Theodore Goodloe.  At the outbreak of the Civil War he entered the service as one of the first volunteers and participated in a number of the severest battles of the four years struggle between the North and the South.  He suffered serious wounds.  Mrs. Goodloe [Olivia Critz Ellis] was a sister of Messrs. T.B. and V.B. Ellis of this city, and preceded her husband in death last April. 



In loving memory of Bessie Louise Goodloe, infant child of Willie B. and Lula Goodloe, who departed this life near Rose Bud Sept. 14, 1898, age 10 months and 10 days…


Widow of J.A. Baugh

Mrs. Fannie Baugh, aunt of this editor, died at her home at Center Hill, June 25, 1900, after a brief illness of pneumonia.  She was the widow of Joel A. Baugh who died many years ago.  She leaves several children, namely W.J. Baugh and Oscar Baugh of Des Arc, Mrs. J.T. Dorris of the same place, Mrs. Josie Davidson of Heber, Mrs. Jennie Bolton of Center Hill… Aunt Fannie was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, South for many years.. She is the last one of a large family connection on both the Baugh and the Banes sides of the house…


Mrs. Hart Died Suddenly

Mrs. Alma Hart, wife of Mr. Hart and oldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Geo. W. Dobbins, died suddenly of congestion of the heart at the family residence in Searcy Valley Saturday [July 15, 1911].  Mrs. Hart had been ill for about a week, but was not considered to be in a serious condition.  Her condition had been such that she had told the members of her family to go and see a ball game that was being played by the boys of the neighborhood, who had been gone a short time, when a runner was sent to tell them that she had passed from this world.  Mrs. Hart was 87 [born July 8, 1874]. 

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Mrs. Kate McDonald died at her home in Argenta yesterday of appendicitis.  Mrs. McDonald was formerly Miss Kate Hussey, and was born and reared in Searcy, having moved to Little Rock several years ago with her father John Hussey.  She leaves a husband [Charles], father, two brothers [Will and Albert Hussey] and one sister.


Wife of Dr. H.C. Jones

Mrs. Dr. H.C. [Sarah Alford] Jones died suddenly of heart failure today [Nov. 20, 1912] at her home on East Center street.  The end came while she was seated in a chair in her room and none of the family were present.  For many years Mrs. Jones has been under the care of a physician… She was about 62 years of age and a member of the Baptist church at Center Hill, where the family resided for many years before removing to Searcy about 15 years ago.  She was born in St. Clair county, Alabama, and was united in marriage to Dr. H.C. Jones in 1869.  Besides a grief-stricken husband she leaves three children, Mark P., Miss Irene and Mr. Maddox of Holland, Tex.

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The funeral services over the remains of Mrs. Dr. Jones were held at the family home on East Center street this morning, conducted by Rev. W.A. Crutchfield of England, Ark.  The high school was dismissed until one o’clock and the teachers and pupils attended the services.  The body was laid to rest in Oak Grove cemetery.


Wife of E.E. Jones

Mrs. Annie Nora Jones (nee Grammer), wife of Mr. E.E. Jones of Mt. Vernon, died at the home of her sister, Miss Estelle Grammer, in this city on June 3, 1912.  Mrs. Jones has been an invalid for several years.  Neither money nor painstaking care was spared in an effort to restore her to her former good health.  The aid of eminent physicians and surgeons here and at Kansas City, Mo., and the constant are of a trained nurse and loving relatives and friends no doubt extended her life… Deceased was the daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Grammer.


A Correction

Editor, Citizen:

Please allow me to make a correction of the leading ideas as expressed in your paper of yesterday, regarding the condition of my wife’s health in the past, and up to her last illness.  You say she was an invalid for several years past, when she never was an invalid up to her last illness; when then like many others was too sick to be up and until just a few days past could get up out of bed if necessary and wait on herself.  She was a bundle of energy in her home and has always done her work when at home.  She was treated in Kansas City three years ago for a special trouble but was not an invalid by any means, nor under a trained nurse for such – only had a small tumor removed, which has never returned.  Her last illness began Jan. 7 last, when she came from Little Rock to Kensett in a warm car, then rode in an open hack on a cold night to Searcy, causing a spell of asthma, followed by congestion of the stomach, then bronchitis, then pneumonia and inflammation of the stomach, causing some fever and an ulcerated condition, growing from bad to worse.  Other troubles of which we may not have known may have existed, helping to hurry on her death.  I believe our physicians will bear me out in this statement. So, I desire the facts, only as they existed – nothing more – as your writing as stated was misleading, the writer having no doubt been misinformed.

Very respectfully,

E.E. Jones, Searcy, June 5, 1912


J.G. Critz Expires

The many friends of the family were grieved to hear today of the death of Mr. John G. Critz, which occurred at the family home on Main street this afternoon.  Mr. Critz is a native of White county, having been born near Center Hill on December 25, 1861.  He was a grandson of the late Rev. George A. Dannelly, one of the most prominent Masons of Arkansas.  He was in the business of the Arkansas Anthracite Co. at Bauxite, from which place he returned to Searcy and engaged for a few months in the meat market business.  He is survived by his wife and one daughter, Miss Eileen…