Below is a collection of newspaper articles written about some of the events in Mary Batson Harvey’s life. They might give you a small glimpse of this wonderful woman and how she led her life.
Surprise Dinner Tendered Mrs. Mary Harvey on Birthday 1910
Last Friday marking the 87th birthday of Mrs. Mary Harvey, one of the best loved pioneer residents of our city, a number of friends and relatives sprung a surprise on her by going to her home laden with baskets containing everything necessary for a sumptuous feast to help her celebrate the day, and a most enjoyable day was spent. Mrs. Harvey was the recipient of many useful and beautiful presents.
Among those present besides the guest of honor were, Rev. Mr. & Mrs. J. G. Harmon and son Gilbert, Messer's and Mesdames Arthur Patterson, George D. Matthews, H. L. Ronalds, B. F. Batson, Charles Melrose, Mesdames Wilhelmina Smith, Maude White, Elizabeth Melrose, Misses Daisy Nash, Harriet and Miriam Melrose, Jane Batson, Ida Rachels, Corina Batson, Catherine and Lenora Patterson, Armine Lee Batson, Curtis White, Russell and Hallam Robinson. The out of town guests included Mrs. Joseph Shepard, daughter Miss Francis and son Howard, Mrs. Hubbard Basket of Albion, IL; Mr. and Mrs. Scott of Bone Gap, Mr. and Mrs. Charley Batson of Keensburg, IL.
Church People Fittingly Celebrated Mrs. Harvey's Birthday
One of the most enjoyable affairs in church or social circles in this vicinity in some time took place at the M.E. Church Tuesday, March 24th (1914). The members and personal friends of Mrs. Mary Harvey, for many years a regular communicant and notwithstanding her advanced age, a participant in all of the social and religious activities in the church, celebrating the 91st. anniversary of her birth in a fitting manner.
An elaborate dinner was spread in the banquet hall, Mrs. Harvey occupying the seat of honor at the table, while seated close to her were a number of the most venerable guests present. The elegant spread being interspersed with brief talks by Rev. Harmon, Madame’s Mary Harvey, Clarissa Patterson, Aunt Nan Butler and David Blair, following which the Junior League, which not long since adopted Mrs. Harvey as it's grandmother, presented her a huge birthday cake and a beautiful growing Easter Lily.
The afternoon was wiled away at quilting, sewing and social converse, the venerable guest of honor entering into the same with vim surprising to her years. Several out of town relatives and friends of Mrs. Harvey were present on this memorable occasion.
The oldest person in Grayville 1916
Mrs. Mary Harvey Given Dinner Party in Honor of her 93rd. Birthday Anniversary.
Friday March 24th was the 93rd birthday anniversary of Mrs. Mary Harvey, and relatives and friends gathered at her home in Grayville and joined in celebrating the event by giving her a dinner party. Many who could not be there remembered her with post cards and congratulations, flowers and other gifts. She is the oldest person living in Grayville and one of the oldest of White county.
Mrs. Harvey is the third child in a family of seven; four sisters and two brothers. All of whom were living until only a few years ago, with the exception of one sister, the oldest of the family who died at the age of thirty four. She was born at or was near what is now Golden Gate, and was married at the age of eighteen to Felix W. Harvey. Her husband and brother Benjamin Batson owned and conducted a store for a while at old Scottsville southeast of Golden Gate. Mr. Harvey taught a term of school at the old log church at Brushy. She and her husband resided for several years in Albion where Mr. Harvey was a miller. Then they moved to Grayville where her husband operated "The Little Eagle Grist Mill" for her brother Benjamin Batson. From there they went to Rochester IL, Wabash county where he followed his profession, miller in a mill run by waterpower. They moved from Rochester to Oakland City, IN. and Mr. Harvey's health had failed. He taught school and after residing there two years he died at the age of forty. Mrs. Harvey moved back to Grayville where she has lived a widow more than half a century. Mrs. Harvey reared a family of four children, besides making a home for a number of orphan children.
Mrs. Harvey's live is convincing evidence that there is truth in: It is worry and not work that kills people". She still enjoys reasonable good health and is unusually active for one of her age. Her sister Miss Jane Batson lives with her.
Celebrates Her 93rd Anniversary 1916
Grayville's Oldest Lady Passes 93rd Milestone Enjoys Good Health
Last Friday marks the 93rd anniversary of Mrs. Mary Harvey of this city. Her friends and relatives joined in celebrating this notable event.
All came with baskets bountifully filled with only the choicest of eatable delights. Served at the noon hour it would have been impossible to find a more complete and elaborate birthday dinner. Those of Mrs. Harvey's friends who could not meet with her on that day remembered her with post cards, congratulations, flowers and numerable gifts. She entertained 15 or more callers during the afternoon and it proved to be one of the most pleasant days for the grand lady. Those participating in this enjoyable occasion were Rev. W.D. Richardson and wife, Arthur Patterson and wife, Mesdames Clarissa Patterson, James Robles, Rose Barnes, Dr. B.F. Batson wife and daughter, Felix Harvey, Mi** Batson, Mrs. Harvey of the ***, Mrs. Charles Hainz, Will Hainz wife and children of West Salem, Mrs. Christina Knodell and son Will Knodell of Fairfield, C.M. Batson wife and son of Keensburg, Miss Alice Baskett of **on, Mrs. Leonard Smith of fortr* and Curtis White of Evansville.
Double Funeral Tuesday Afternoon
Youth and Old Age Lay Down Life's Burden and are laid to Rest in Oak Grove Cemetery.
Maryville M.E. Church was the scene of a very sad and most unusual ceremony Tuesday afternoon when burial services were conducted for Mrs. Mary Harvey, Grayville's oldest lady and her grand niece Miss Winfred Woode*.
Rev. W.D. Richardson presided and after reading obituaries of the two deceased women preached a touching and appropriate sermon. Music was provided by the King's Daughters and assisted by Messer's. Wm. Robinson, W.L. Williams, Mesdames C.S. Field and Jennie Haefele and Miss Delia Eiebe*. The church was filled with relatives and friends who came to pay their last respects to the departed ones. Internment was at Oak Grove Cemetery.
Mrs. Mary Harvey
Mrs. Mary Harvey was the oldest lady in Grayville and probably the oldest in White County coming here the earliest days of this settlement. She was not only the oldest but also one of the most widely known and highly respected ladies of the community, her pleasant personality and beautiful character winning her friends by the score. She was respected by all who knew her and will be greatly missed.
Mary Batson was born in Wayne County, IL March 22, 1823. She was united in marriage to Felix w. Harvey, August 24th, 1841 and to this union six children were born, two sons and four daughters, two of whom survive her - Mrs. Armenta Haskett near Albion and Felix W. Harvey of New Harmony, IN. Her husband preceded her in death March 5th, 1857.
Aunt Mary Harvey as she was commonly called, united with the Methodist Church early in life and has lived a faithful and consistent Christian until death. Her long life of Christian service is a standing testimonial of the Christian religion. she was one of the charter members of the Grayville Methodist church and was faithful in attendance as long as her health would permit. She was adopted by the "Junior League" as the "Grandmother of the League". She was called from earth to rest April 8th, 1918 at the advanced age of 95 years and 16 days.
She leaves to mourn her departure the two surviving children, two sisters, Mrs. Clarissa Patterson and Miss Jane Batson of Grayville, a number of grandchildren and great grandchildren and other relatives. Surely it can be said of her life-"She hath fought a good fight and she hath kept the faith she hath finished **.
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Site created March 20th, 2001.