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^NANNIE--note--Nannie's parents were Ambrose P. Pirtle (14 Dec 1848-25 Feb 1915) and Sarah Bethana Morris (19 March 1861-13 Aug 1894). Both were born, raised, and married in Dade Co., MO. Ambrose Pirtle's parents were John and Ann Pirtle of Dade Co., MO.

A History of this Pirtle Family recounted by Edna Duncan, including photographs.
-- courtesy of Clovis Pirtle


  WILLIE ORON b. 19 June 1904--Salona, TX d. 6 June 1991--Chickasha, OK
  LILLIAN FAYE b. 26 November 1905--Salona, TX d. 10 Octber 2002--Canon City, CO
  ELMA LUCILLE b. 18 October 1910--Salona, TX d. 18 April 2000--Oklahoma City, OK
 VERNON TERRELL b. 31 January 1913--Montague, TX d. 5 June 1989--Greece
 GEORGIA PAULINE b. 8 July 1915--Bowie, TX living--Austin, TX
  J. C. b. 16 April 1918--Bowie, TX living--Yukon, OK
*DOROTHY LEE b. 12 May 1924--Bowie, TX living--Del City, OK

    John Herschel Ewing was my grandfather. I never knew him, nor can my mother, Dorothy, remember him. He was a farmer in Texas, never well-off but hard-working and an upstanding citizen. He and Nannie Cordelia took Herschel's mother Irene to live with them for many years. Only after my grandfather's death did Irene go to live with another son, Eugene.

J. Herschel, Willie Oron, Nannie Cordelia, and Lillian Faye
ca. 1907

    At the end of 1925 and the beginning of 1926, something came to plague the area around Bowie, Texas: typhoid. My mother, an infant and the youngest child, was the first to suffer the illness, but four of her brothers and sisters and John Herschel himself were soon ill. My Grandmother Nannie, my Great-Grandmother Irene Samantha, and the two children lucky enough to escape the fever nursed the ill and carried on as best they could with the duties of the household. When the crisis was passed by the children and they were on the road to recovery, Herschel, weakened by the fever and the worry about his beloved family, died at Bowie on January 3, 1926.

    According to my Uncle J.C. Ewing and my Aunt Elma Ewing Graben, my grandfather had a most beautiful voice, singing in both church and singing conventions held near and far. When he realized that his time had come, he called each child to him, except for my mother who was too young to understand what was happening, and exchanged a few comforting and loving words with them. Then he had all his family gather around his deathbed, again excepting baby Dorothy, and sang strongly and with faith "The Old Rugged Cross." As the last note faded away, he closed his eyes for the last time on this world.

    My grandmother was left with seven children to raise and very little means to raise them. They soon moved to a farm my grandfather had earlier purchased in Terrall, OK. Luckily my Uncle Oron, 22 at the time of his father's death, was already a teacher. Without his help, the family might never have survived intact. Later my Uncle Oron and his wife Jean and daughter Sandra made a home for Grandma Ewing with them.

    Although I have no memories of my Grandfather Herschel Ewing, only stories I've been told, I have precious memories of my Grandma Ewing. For that I am forever grateful. But I've always felt drawn to the grandfather I never knew, and, with the help of some of his children still living, I intend to tell his story.

    Herschel Ewing and Nannie Cordelia are buried together at Bowie Cemetery, in Bowie, Texas. Their gravesite is cared for by my mother and father and other relatives, visited faithfully each year around Memorial Day.



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