Old soldier’s death was front page news

The following story ran on the front page of the Arkansas Gazette on Sunday, February 19, 1922. A two-column photograph of Mr. Moye was the only photo on the page.



earcy, Feb. 18 – James Madison Moye, aged 102, the oldest resident of White County, died yesterday at his home near Sidon, about 16 miles northwest of Searcy, according to word received here today. He was born in Haywood County, Tennessee, on October 2, 1819, and had lived in this county since before the Civil War.

          Mr. Moye is survived by his wife and five children. He was 70 years older than his youngest child. He was married four times.

          Coming to Arkansas when the state was a wilderness, Mr. Moye often told many interesting stories of pioneer days in White and St. Francis counties. He made the trip from Tennessee to St. Francis County in a wagon drawn by oxen. That was in 1848. He came to White County 10 years later.  Mr. Moye was a great hunter in the pioneer days. He found much game including bear, panther, deer, wolves and wild turkey upon his arrival here. He said hunting afforded great sport as well as food for the early settlers who earned their fortunes out of the wilderness.

          There was only one house in Searcy when Mr. Moye arrived here, and the present city park was a briar thicket. The sulphur spring there was discovered when a deer went there to drink. Mr. Moye in the Confederate army served throughout the Civil War. He first was with General McRae of Searcy and later with Sterling Price of Missouri. He was in Captain McGee’s company.

          Mr. Moye was one of White County’s most successful farmers. Up to a year before he died he cultivated the family garden. He always used liquor and tobacco in a moderate degree and suffered no ill effects from either.

This material was submitted by White County Historical Society member Anita Leslie of Booneville who is researching the James Moye family of Sidon, the Abraham Shelby family of Clay and the Isaac Anderson family of Crosby. You can contact her at 150 East Ivy, Booneville, AR 72927 or e17s37@river-valley.net