Miss Pamelia Ann Pruette
From The Clipper, August 5, 1992
Charter Member Celebrates 97th Birthday – Flint Hills DAR Honor Pamelia Pruette
The Flint Hills Chapter of The Daughters of the American Revolution held a reception tea Sunday afternoon at Boiling Springs Baptist Church to honor one of their own. Pamelia Alice Pruette, a charter member of the chapter, was feted in honor of her 97th birthday.
Pamelia served the DAR as a chapter registrar for several years. She also helped members to research their family ancestry to qualify for membership. Her Revolutionary ancestor was William Holland.
A Tribute To Big Sister, “Meal”
by Ferne Padgett
with Bob Young
Pamelia Pruette was the first child of Lander and Ollie Bridges Pruette, “a very young couple.” Lander often said that they “all grew up together” under the watchful eyes of grandparents and other family members.
Pamelia began her education by tagging along with Drury Lovelace, her great-uncle, who was the teacher at Pleasant Ridge. Later, she attended Boiling Springs School and when Boiling Springs High School opened, she went there too.
Mill Calls Daddy To Cliffside To Work
Lander was asked to leave his farm in Boiling Springs and to go to Cliffside to operate a dairy for Cliffside Mills. The rest of the family remained in Boiling Springs, awaiting the birth of the fifth and youngest child, Hannah. Pamelia was a senior in high school.
A Visit To Dad Changed Pamelia’s Life
During a visit to see her father at Cliffside, she was spotted by an official of the mill. He inquired about her, spoke to Lander and hired her on the spot. He was so impressed that he took her directly to the Post Office and put her to work immediately.
They insisted that she spend the night at “Aunt Hester Carpenter’s Boarding House” in Cliffside in order to be at work early the next morning. She couldn’t even return to Boiling Springs for clothes and other necessities. Since cars were scarce and travel was slow Pamelia went to the company store and bought the necessary things. And she WAS ready for work the next morning.
The Post Office was located in the same building as the mill office. Charles H Haynes was the Postmaster and following his father’s death, he also assumed the responsibilities for the Cliffside Mill. Pamelia worked primarily in the Post Office, but she had some duties in the mill office as well.
After about five years with the company, Mr. Haynes asked her to enroll in business school. She attended Cecil’s Business College in Spartanburg. After completing her studies, she returned to Cliffside and began her secretarial duties. She worked for many of the company officials. Z.O. Jenkins, Maurice Hendrick, M.A. Bearden and Paul Bridges.
Family And Church Shared Meal’s Time
Pamelia, affectionately referred to as “Meal,” was always a family favorite and that continues to this day with her two little great nephews, Thomas and Bryan Biggerstaff.
Pamelia was always active in her church, serving as Secretary to the Pastor at Cliffside Baptist Church – before the days of hired staff. She served on the Pastor Search Committee and many other areas where she was needed. She worked in Sunday School with the little folks with whom she always seemed to get along so well. She also sang in the church choir.
Moving Back To Boiling Springs
After her retirement in 1960 she and her mother and her uncle, Cleo Pruette, moved back to Boiling Springs, to the home left to her by her grandmother, Hannah Lovelace Pruette.
She spent a great deal of time caring for family members. Besides her mother and uncle, she cared for her sister Hannah, who was seriously ill. She also enjoyed being called to help with the children of her two nieces, Gigi Biggerstaff and Betty Deviney.
“Meal” was left alone after her mother and uncle died within two weeks of each other. She kept college boys in her house for awhile after that and she has some lovely memories of those days.
When her sister Ferne and her husband James Padgett retired from Cone Mills, she asked them to move in with her. They enjoyed many years of gardening, visiting relatives, being involved in the DAR and other activities. Now she and Fern are living in her ancestral home, still enjoying family, friends and memories.
Happy birthday and God bless you, Meal.
Clipping courtesy Phillip White.