Newsoms High class of 1947 celebrates 60th anniversary

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 14, 2007

FRANKLIN—The class of 1947 of Newsoms High School celebrated its 60th anniversary at the Pace House Inn in Franklin.

Eight of the members of the class of 10 were present: Hugh Grant and wife Nather of Nags Head, N.C.; Dorothy Bailey Gelhaus of Franklin; Louise Drake Pixley of Franklin; Josephine Futrell Sumner of Franklin; Mary Nell Johnson Turner and husband Minnie of Courtland; Elizabeth Joyner Baldwin of Franklin; Catherine Thorpe Walter and son Johnie of Clinton, Md.; and Betty Worrell Darden of Newsoms.

Two members, Paige Bunn Prince of Stony Creek and Anne Bryant Jordan of Boykins, were unable to attend due to illness. Catherine Baugham Dunlow of Severn, N.C., was also present. She had actually been in the same class until her senior year and had to drop out and graduated the next year.

Betty and Elizabeth were recognized for having the most children, four.

Elizabeth has the most grandchildren, six, and most great-grandchildren, four. Catherine W. and her son traveled farther than any other classmate, 202 miles.

Catherine D. won recognition as the member who got married first after high school. Louise was recognized as the only member still having a parent alive, her mother, Lilly Mae Drake, who will be 105 years old on Sept. 27.

The class members enjoyed reminiscing, numerous old photos, delicious food, and fellowship among the spacious rooms and the beautifully decorated table.

Each person present was given a program booklet found from 40 years ago which was redone. It showed the class motto was “Today We Follow: Tomorrow We Lead.” The colors were pink and green and the flower was the rose.

President of the class and only boy, Hugh, welcomed the group and made remarks. Betty had found her valedictorian speech and read excerpts from it.

The last paragraph of the speech summed it all up: “We, the graduating class of 1947, gathered together for the last time make our wish, we pledge our youth to serve wherever and however we may be needed. For we know that the security of the future depends on the young people of today. Ladies and gentlemen — the graduates of 1947 bid you ‘Farewell.’”

The lively group vowed to meet again in five years. It was not to be forgotten.