Miss Emma Alderson wrote the following article for the Alderson
Advertiser. Alderson ties are evident throughout the article, not only
in that Miss Emma wrote the article, but reference to George and J. M.
Alderson and Enos Flint who played a very interesting role in this
institution. Additionally, note the portion of this article devoted to
S. W. N. Feamster from another well known and respected family of
Alderson. - Tom Dameron
Alleghany College was located at Blue
Sulphur Springs, Greenbrier County. It was then a beautiful site and a
popular resort. The buildings erected for pleasure and health seekers,
were well adapted to school purposes and accommodated about 250, with
lecture rooms and a good chapel it was burned by the Union army in
1864. A number of years ago, Hon. George Alderson, the last surviving
Trustee of the College, had the late J. M. Alderson and Enos Flint
created Trustees by the Greenbrier County Court. They then brought suit
against the U. S. Government for the burning of the property. The court
of Claims allowed $16,000.00 for destruction of the property, less than
half asked for. This was the first year of the World War, but the claim
has not yet been paid.
The College was presented by the Baptists of Eastern Virginia to the
Baptists of Western Virginia, some years before the War Between the
States, probably '58 or '59 and chartered by the Legislature of
Virginia. The service it gave this part of the State of Virginia was
remarkable. Dr. Wm E. Duncan of Branford, Virginia, was its most
acceptable President and must have been a wonderful leader and educator
to have inspired the young men under him to accomplish the worth while
things they did.
Students of Alleghany College
(continued from previous column)
I have known who received a part or all of their education at Alleghany
College are: Rev. Wm Parkenson Walker, D.D., of Nicholas County.
Received all his schooling here; Missionary, founder and pastor of
Fifth Avenue Baptist Church, Huntington, West Virginia for twenty-nine
years, which stands today a monument to his noble life and work.
President West Virginia General Association 1876-78; President West
Virginia Baptist Educational Society three years.
Rev. John. W. Carter, D. D., founder and first pastor of the First Baptist
Church, Parkersburg. After the War Between the States, raised it to an
influential position among the Churches of West Virginia. He was one of
the most eloquent orators the state has produced. During the years he
was pastor of the First Baptist Church, Raleigh, N. C., he was known as
the 'Silver-tongued orator of the South.'
Judge C. J. Faulkner, Berkley County, reached a high position in law and
was minister to France. He left one of the handsomest homes in the
State with its painting. works of art, and furnishing.
Mr. John Tabor, son of a minister, business man, was well known on the
New York Stock Exchange. As he stood in his office on Wall Street,
holding a long piece of ticker tape in his hand, he said to me with
pleasant smile: "My school days at old Alleghany College were the
happiest of my life" and looking down at the tape in his hand said: "If
I make a killing with this I will endow the successor to it,' but death
claimed him a few months later.
Coleman Alderson, member of Greenbrier Cavalry in the War of the sixties
in April '61, was promoted to 2nd Lieut., April '62 to First Lieut.,
Dec. '62 in Company A, 36th Bat. Va., Cavalry, Wounded and captured in
'64, imprisoned in Camp Chase, O. Exchanged just before Lee's
surrender. He honored his Chief among all men. Walking under the
beautiful trees with him in the Campus at West Point, coming to one more
stately than the rest, he raised and stood at attention, saying: "General Lee planted this tree when a Cadet here".
Continued from previous column
Lieut. S. W. N.
Feamster, of our community, was also a member of the Greenbrier Cavalry,
the first company to leave the county and which later became General
Lee's body-guard. It was said of Lieut. Feamster that "He was one
of the most honored and prominent citizens of his county, held in high
esteem by rich and poor, as a citizen, exemplary; as neighbor he
followed the Good Samaritan, ever ready to assist those in need". To him
went the credit of saving Lewisburg, Va., now West Virginia. Visiting
his mother and sisters in Lewisburg while standing with the bridle reins
of his horse over his arm, his sister Sybina Creigh, later wife of Capt.
Sam Tyree, came running to tell here brother the 'Yankees are coming."
Instead of fleeing, the brave soldier, spurring his horse ran noisily to
meet the Federal Army, calling wildly for his regiment, the 25th that he
knew to be miles away. The Federals fled in wild disorder. Lieut.
Feamster was twice made Lieut., was virtually commander of his company
in all active work because of continued ill health of his captain. Gen.
McClellan said of him, "Newman Feamster fights like the devil, runs like
the wind, but I have seen tears course down his cheeks when he had to
mildly correct one of his children so tender hearted he was".
Judge A. Nelson Campbell served throughout the war of '61 and later
graduated from the law school of Washington & Lee, during the presidency
of General R. E. Lee, whom he knew personally. By reason of the test
oath restriction he was not admitted to the bar until 1870. In 1888-1896
he was judge of the Tenth Judicial Circuit. Judge Campbell was a kindly,
big-hearted man greatly loved by everyone who knew him, by reason of his
social qualities and his store of anecdotes and reminiscence. He loved
to tell of his school days at Alleghany College. -
Miss Emma Alderson