Little Pee Dee River Dillon County, South Carolina
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Meares Cemetery

Dillon County, S.C.

Contributed by Jo Church Dickerson, July 1997

Location:  Kemper/Tabernacle Community, Hillboro Township, near Lake View, in
Dillon Co, SC.  

Directions:  On west side of State Road #74, recently renamed Rabbit Island
Road, between Hwy #41 and Old Mullins Hwy - enclosed by a beautiful brick
wall, shady and well kept, and situated beside the Roaring Branch.  Includes
all stones/inscriptions as of date of copying.  Surveyed by Jo Church
Dickerson - 1986.

Meares, Murray Larue; 27 Apr 1919 - 1 Mar 1975; married Ruth Taylor 19 Dec
Meares, Leila Ayres; 7 Oct 1884 - 3 Apr 1961
Meares, Murray Spencer; 15 Dec 1876 - 15 Aug 1955; married Leila Ayres 15 Sep
Meares, Infant Son of Leila Ayres & Murray S. Meares; 23 Oct 1915

Meares, James Foster; 15 Jan 1890 - 7 Oct 1969
Meares, Lola Fronde Moody; 15 Sep 1890 - 24 Mar 1979
Mears, Charlie M.; 21 Mar 1979 - 13 Sep 1974
Mears, Dr. Chester M.; 7 Sep 1884 - 5 Jun 1955
Meares, J.R.; 12 Jul 1851 - 2 Jan 1930
Meares, Sarah Ann Elvington; 31 May 1854 - 3 Apr 1918; wife of J.R. Meares
Meares, Hubert Kiffin; 22 Aug 1921 - 10 Nov 1928; son of (J.F. &) Lola Meares

Meares, Azilea; 26 Aug 1923 - 2 Sep 1931; dau of J.F. & Lola Meares
Meares, William Evans; 18 Oct 1937 - 15 Apr 1953; grandson of J.F. & Lola

Meares, James Foster Jr.; 5 Dec 1920 - 27 Dec 1959
Meares, Dorothy Elaine; 4 Dec 1947 - 25 Dec 1959; dau of James Foster Jr. &
Eunice Grantham Meares
Meares, Roselyn Fronde; 18 Nov 1952 - 24 Dec 1959; dau of James Foster Jr.
&Eunice Grantham Meares

The following three old stones are identical, side by side, no dates on
Father - Owen Elvington
Daughter - Amanda Elvington
Mother - Louise Elvington

Mears, Infant son of J.R. & S.A. Mears; 12 Jan 1895

Five very old, tall, simple stones, in a row, adult length graves, stones
appear to have never been inscribed.

Scott, Appy; 20 Dec 1813 - 23 Apr 1853
Scott, John F.; 25 Jan 1849 - 15 Jun 1856
Scott, Nancy; 16 Mar 1851 - 18 Jul 1896; "Darling we miss you"
Graham, Arry; 23 Jan 1847 - 2 Nov 1908; wife of F.B. Graham
Scott, Esther; 15 Jan 1845 - 14 Nov 1919

Four stones, same as five above, not inscribed.

This very old, beautiful cemetery is located on and surrounded by lands that
once belonged to John Elvington (c1778-1860).  Rabbit Island Road was
referred to by Sellers
in his "History of Marion County, S.C." as "the road from Gaddy's Mills to
Nichols" and he stated that it was on this road that John Elvington resided.
It is probable that this cemetery is where John Elvington and others of his
family are buried, perhaps some of them under the uninscribed stones.  Two of
his known children are buried here - Appy Elvington Scott and Owen Elvington
are both mentioned in Sellers' "History" as being children of "Old" John
Elvington. Owen Elvington married Louise/Louisa Goodyear, and their daughter
Sarah "Sallie" Elvington married James R. Mears/Meares, son of Mary Hays and
her second husband, George Mears.  The Meares family members buried here are
descendants of James R. & Sarah Elvington Meares.  Appy Elvington Scott was
married to Eli Scott, son of Pharoah Scott.  Their children John F.,  Arry,
Nancy and Esther are buried near Appy.  Eli Scott and his second wife,
Obedience "Beedy" Goodyear are buried less than a mile up the road.  This
cemetery is still in use by the Meares family, and there have been interments
since date of copying.  

Any record of this cemetery would be incomplete without a mention of the
unique and beautiful character of Mrs. Lola Fronde Moody Meares.  She was a
most gracious lady.

Sources:  State of SC land grants and plats; Marion Co deeds; Sellers'
"History of Marion Co SC"; Marion Co probate records; Dillon County plats;
U.S. census records for Marion County SC.

© 1997 Jo Church Dickerson 

Obituaries contributed by Peggy HEARD:

From Mullins Enterprise, Thursday, 9 Oct. 1969:
"J. Foster Meares Dies at Kemper, Rites Wednesday"

James Foster Meares, 79, widely known citizen of the Kemper section of Dillon County, died Tuesday at his residence. He had been in declining health for some time.

He was born in Dillon Co. and lived all his life at the ancestral Meares home. He was a son of the late James R. and Sallie Elvington Meares, pioneer citizens of Dillon Co.

He was president of the Marion Electric Cooperative, serving as its head from its initial organization until it was merged with the Darlington Cooperative to form the Pee Dee Electric Cooperative. He continued to serve as a member of the Board of Directors until ill health forced his retirement and he was given an honorary lifetime directorship.

His progressive farming methods were recognized by Clemson University in 1947 when he was named a Master Farmer. He was active in farm organizations of Dillon County.

A member of the Mullins First Baptist Church, he was a member of the Men's Bible Class of the Sunday School.

Funeral services were held Wednesday afternoon from the home with his pastor, the Rev. Lewis E. McCormick, the Rev. Richard Allen and the Rev. C.J. Langston officiating. Burial followed in the Meares Family Cemetery.

Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Lola Moody Meares; three daughters: Mrs. E.D. Hayes of Jacksonville, Fla.; Mrs. Norris Baker of Fork and Miss Carolyn Meares of Bishopville; one son, Edwin Meares of Lake View; 11 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren."

"The Mullins Enterprise" 31 December 1959
"J.F. Meares, Jr., and 2 Daughters
J.H. Myers Lose Lives In Accident"

"Grim tragedy involving a three-car smash collision at the Lake View limits brought a pall of sadness over the entire area when the wreck claimed the lives of three members of the J.F. Meares family and that of Joe Henry Myers, 47, of Lake View.

The accident occurred at a farm-to-market road intersection just inside the southern boundary of Lake View. Myers was traveling alone at the time of the accident.

Immediately after the collision of the Meares and Myers cars, a third car traveling behind the Myers car also struck the crash. Winston Cooke, 24, and Stacy Cooke, 35, both of Lake View, were treated at the Martin Hospital in Mullins and released.

Roselyn Fronde Meares, 7-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J.F. Meares, Jr. of Nichols was killed instantly and her sister, Dorothy Elaine Meares, 12, died Friday in the Mullins Hospital. Joe Henry Myers also died at 1:30 Friday in the Mullins Hospital.

James Foster Meares, Jr., father of the girls, died Sunday afternoon at the Mullins Hospital, leaving as patients his wife, the former Miss Eunice Grantham and an older daughter, Mary Ellen, 14, in the hospital. Mrs. Meares received critical injuries but is thought to be holding her own at the hospital. Mary Ellen is not seriously injured.

Funeral services for Dorothy Elaine and Roselyn Meares were conducted from the home of the paternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. J. Foster Meares, Route 1, Nichold Sunday afternoon. The Rev. Orin Anderson and the Rev. M.M. Summey were in charge. Burial followed at the Meares Family Cemetery.

James Foster Meares, Jr. died about 3 o'clock Sunday afternoon and funeral services were conducted Monday afternoon from the home of his parents, with the Rev. Orin Anderson, the Rev. M. M. Summey and the Rev. Lewis E. McCormick officiating.

Surviving Mr. Meares are the widow, a son, Milford Meares, a daughter, Mary Ellen; his parents; a brother, Edwin Meares, all of Nichols; three sisters: Mrs. E.D. Hayes of Jacksonville, Fla.; Mrs. Norris F. Baker, Rt. 2, Dillon; and Miss Carolyn Meares of Bishopville.

Mr. Meares was a member of the Kemper Baptist Church, the Kemper Grange, Chairman of the Dillon County Agriculture Planning Committee and vice-president of the Dillon Farm Bureau.

Surviving the Meares daughters are their maternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. William P. Grantham of Dillon.

Funeral services for Joe Henry Myers were conducted Saturday afternoon from the home at Lake View by the Rev. M.M. Summey. Burial followed in the Cooktown Cemetery.

A veteran of World War II, Mr. Myers is survived by his widow, the former Lillie Barfield; one daughter, Mrs. Roy O'Briant of Lake View; one granddaughter, and two brothers: Robert of Hartsville and Nat Myers of Lake View."

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