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Grandma and Grandpa Stout
By: Gerri Unitt, Dec. 6, 2009
Coming to McDowell County, West Virginia
Booker Stout. the son of William Lorenzo Stout & Catherine Anderson Stout, realized that he could not get enough work to support a family in Ashe County, North Carolina. Booker at the age of 26 yrs old fell in love with the Baptist preacher's daughter who was a young divorced woman. Maggie Evaline Hart Blevins was beautiful and she had a daughter Eva by Arthur Blevins who left her to go out west. Maggie waited seven years before she could divorce him. Maggie's father Reverend Joseph Riley Hart was a man who preached all day on Sunday and worked during the week. Maggie's mother, Alice Jones Eller Hart, passed away in child birth. Lots of men left Ashe to go to work in the coalfields of McDowell county, West Virginia to raise families. In 1912 Booker decide that he would too.
Booker married Maggie 10 Dec 1912 and went back to the coalfield to get a house for his family. Eva begged her mother not to marry Booker, but Maggie knew that lots of men didn't want a ready made family, and that she and her daughter would be taken care of.
Maggie and her daughter Eva, took the train from Jeffersonville to Welch, West Virginia, then got a ride to number 4 hollow. Maggie carried Eva across the train trestle going up into the hollow where Booker got them a house. Booker worked twelve hour shifts in the mines. Coal was king in McDowell County as it brought others from other states to work in the coal mines. Maggie was busy with taking care of Eva and preparing to have a baby.
Many children were born to this family and they all went to the Premier Elementary School. The company store and the post office were a big part of everyday life for those who lived in Premier. Maggie saw many of her and Booker's families come from Ashe to live at Premier over the years. They watched as a coal tipple was built in the hollow then later as no more trains came up the hollow to the tipple. They raised their children and watched many of their grandchildren grow up in Number 4 Hollow. Maggie passed away 8th March 1958, and Booker passed away 28 Aug 1965.