Ruth Watson's 105th Birthday
Ruth Watson's 105th Birthday
The Sun (Rutherfordton, N.C.)
Thursday Morning, October 21, 1920
MRS. WATSON HAS UNUSUAL RECORD
Rutherford Woman Has Unique Distinction - Large Crowd Gather In
Honor Of Her 105th Birthday
About 300 people gathered at the home of Mr. Tom I. Watson last
Saturday to celebrate his mother’s, Mrs. Ruth Porter Watson’s
105th birthday. She makes her home with her fourth son, three
miles east of here. Songs were sung. Short speeches were made by
Revs. J.C. Grier, T.C. Jordan, J.F. McKinnon of Westminster and
editor R.E. Price. They discussed various phases of Mrs.
Watson’s life and lessons to be drawn from it.
A bountiful dinner was spread in picnic style. Everybody ate to
their heart’s content and much food was left.
Mrs. Watson was able to set up part of the day. She watched the
crowd eat from her chair in the sitting room. Her health is
failing fast, though she has a good mind and hears well and can
see some. She has to be helped to walk. Her mind is unusually
good considering her age.
The writer saw the Bible record of her age. She was born Oct.
16, 1815 and was married Sept. 7th, 1840. Her husband died
November 19th, 1894. Her youngest child was born in 1858. She
has eight living children and one dead, the oldest, dying when
an infant of 18 days age. Five of her children were present
Saturday. They were: James A. Watson, the oldest, Andrew B., the
third son, Tom I., the fourth son, Miss Ruth Amanda Watson, the
sixth child, and Geo. F. the youngest son. Samuel Allison
Watson, who lives in Texas was at his son’s home in Louisiana.
He recently attended the Confederate Reunion at Houston, Texas.
John Calvin Watson, the fifth child lives in Tennessee and was
unable to attend. (The author confused Samuel Allison, who lived
in Tennessee, with John Calvin, who lived in Texas.) Mrs. Hannah
Jane Norvell, the seventh child, who lives near was not present
on account of sickness.
Three of the sons are Confederate veterans. Two of them have
great grand children. Mrs. Watson had grand children present
Sautrday (sic) who have grand children of their own. Five
generations were represented Saturday. Mrs. Watson’s descendants
are: eight children, 29 grand children, about 114 great grand
children, and about 25 great great grand children, over 200 in
She was born three years after the close of the late war with
England. She has witnessed four great wars. She is the only
living mother in the entire South who has three living sons that
are Confederate veterans. The United Daughters of the
Confederacy have searched the South for her equal but only found
38 mothers who had as many as one living son who was a defender
of the South during the sixties. The National Chapter of the
U.D.C. gave Mrs. Watson a beautiful Confederate Memorial badge
Mrs. Watson has no secrets of “youth” except that she does not
smoke a pipe and never dipper snuff or indulged in any habits
that were likely to impair her health. Good health and energy
run in her family it seems.
Mrs. Watson is a woman of very sweet disposition and has a deep
religious conviction. The family Bible shows that she has been a
constant reader of its pages.
Rutherford County can congratulate herself on having such a
remarkable citizen as Mrs. Watson. She has registered and will
have the satisfaction of voting a Democratic ticket next month.
Her two daughters will also vote with her. We hope that she can
have many more happy birthday celebrations.