John Owens Obituary

Contributed: January 2005

Submitted by Peggy Horton

From: THE ATHENS POST - (Athens, Limestone Co, AL) - July 11, 1873:


The Hinds County (Miss) Gazette has the following notice of the death of a centenarian. Those who declaim against the use of Tobacco in any form will here see its terrible effects.

"JOHN OWENS died at the residence of his son in ITAWAMBA county in this state on the 27th day of May, aged 111 years, 7 months and 6 days. He was a native of NORTH CAROLINA, but had lived in the counties of TISHOMINGO and ITAWAMBA in this State many years. Mr. OWENS was never a candidate for office, was a farmer by profession, was a member of the Primitive Baptist church for 92 years; he occasionally used whisky but was never drunk in his life; he was married at the age of 37 -- raised 11 children, all of whom are now living, the oldest being 74 and the youngest 49 years old. He never had a doctor called to his family and never himself took a dose of medicine. His weight was never over 130 pounds. He was a slave to the use of tobacco and alternately smoked and chewed for 103 years. For several days before his death he positively refused nourishment and finally died calmly and without a struggle."