Narcissa Nicholson Rickman, Part 2

In part 1, we learned that Narcissa Elizabeth Jane Nicholson Rickman was born on September 13, 1855, in the Cherryfield section of what is now Transylvania County, NC. She married Nicholas Osborne Rickman, who was the son of John Brown Rickman, who was born on what is now called Miller Road in Fairview.

Narcissa only went to school for less than a year, but she was able to read and write. She was a little over four feet tall and wore a size four shoe. After her husband died, Narcissa never remarried and raised her son and three daughters by herself.

And now the story continues.


My grandfather, Henry Ingle, was building my parent’s house, as well as a house for him and grandmother. When visiting at age 95, Narcissa would walk up the hill a quarter mile from where my grandparents lived to inspect the job my grandfather was doing on the houses. When I went to her annual birthday parties, she would ask me if those big trees were still alive in the yard and how the barn and the garden were doing.

Narcissa broke her hip when she was around 96. Although the doctors did not give her much hope, she recovered. She fell and broke her hip again when she was 112 and was never able to walk again after that. She died in 1968 at age 113.

Narcissa like to visit her kin. She would have her granddaughter take her to visit her first cousin, Mary Tinsley Hamblin, in Brevard. Mary Hamblin lived to be 109, though she claimed to be only 107. She would also visit her first cousin Fernand N. “Denny” Nicholson. He lived to be 102. Narcissa said smoking that old pipe for 80 years killed him. Denny married Cora Lee Holden. She was 33 years younger than him but only outlived him for a few years.

Narcissa’s brothers lived a long time as well. They were James Harrison Nicholson (1848–1936), Floyd Mason Nicholson (1850–1946), Sevier Nicholson (1853–1946), Henry P. Nicholson (1865–1959), Augustus Nicholson (1868–1939), who died in a car wreck in Greenville, SC, Ernest Nicholson (1871–1957), and Wit Jud Nicholson (1873–1977). Uncle Wit was my favorite.

The only Nicholson to die young was my great-grandmother, Ellen Augusta Nicholson Davis (1860–1901). She died young because my great-grandfather Thomas Jefferson Davis was a lazy hypochondriac who wouldn’t work. He was born in 1854 and died in 1946 at age 92. He would go from relative to relative spreading all the family gossip. They would all keep him a week or two just to find out what was going on with the rest of the family.

Narcissa and Uncle Nicholas Rickman had four children.

1. Andrew Cornelius Rickman (July 7, 1884–May 29, 1960). He married Flora Pearl Powell (1899–1982).

2. Cannie Jane Rickman (January 1, 1886–February 20, 1977). She married Zebulon Vance Bell (1879–1957).

3. Sally Rebecca Rickman (March, 13, 1889–November 8, 1982). She married Fred Scruggs.

4. Bessie Lee Rickman (April 13, 1890–August 7, 1992). She married Harkless Calloway Hensley.

Bruce Whitaker documents Fairview area genealogy. To get in touch with him, contact the Crier at [email protected] or
828-771-6983 (call/text).

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