Copyright © Janice Tracy, Mississippi Memories

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Jim Carr and the "Good People" of Attala County

A few weeks ago while reading through Duncan Covington's "The People of Shrock, Mississippi 1895-1922," I ran across an article that was published in the "Star Ledger" newspaper in 1899. My post is about some "good people," perhaps would-be "saints," who helped a person in need long ago. These good deeds involved a number of Shrock residents, including my own paternal great-grandfather, John Porter, and the account of what happened appeared in the August 14, 1899 newspaper column, signed by "Violet."

"There was a sad affair here several days since. Mr. John Porter found a man by the name of Jim Carr in an old cotton house very sick and without food or medicine. He told the neighbors of the poor man's condition, and, being near Mr. Wm. Holley's, he took his buggy and with neighbors help moved him to a cabin on his place and Mrs. Holley sent bedding and made it as comfortable as possible. The poor man lay on his dying bed, among strangers with no kin near and exclaimed: Good people! Good People! They sent for Dr. Anderson and did all they could for him but on Friday his life ended. The people bought his coffin and clothes and laid him to rest in Old Fellowship grave yard. He said he was on his way to work in timber and had no relatives. Peace to his ashes."

Another article that provides some additional information about Mr. Carr appears in the August 11, 1899 edition of "The Mississippi Farmer" (Vol. 3, No. 40.) This article was written by "Daisy" and relates that Mr. Carr, who was "about 45 years old" when he died, had come to Mississippi to "work in the swamp." He became ill after arriving in Attala County and had not been able to work. When Mr. Carr was asked by those who were helping him before his death if he had relatives they should contact, he told them he had no living relatives at all.

Good people. Yes, good people they all were indeed.

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