Pike County, Mississippi Biographies

from MISSISSIPPI - Volume III, Contemporary Biography by Rowland Dunbar, L.L. D.
copyright 1907 by The Southern Historical Publishing Association

Bacot, Samuel Atkinson, secretary and treasurer of the William Atkinson & Bacot Company, of Osyka, is one of the prominent and successful business men of the younger generation in this section of the State and the concern in which he is a principal is one of the largest of the sort in southeastern Mississippi. Its trade extends throughout Pike and Amite counties and into neighboring parishes in Louisiana.

Mr. Bacot is a native of Pike county, having been born in Summit, March 13, 1865. He is a son of Dr. William and Myra Caroline (Atkinson) Bacot, the former of whom was born in Pike county, Oct. 13, 1832, and the latter in Columbia, Marion county, this State, where her father was a leading merchant.

The paternal grandfather was a planter and merchant and served eighteen years as Sheriff of Pike county. Dr. William Bacot was graduated in the Medical College of Louisiana, at New Orleans, and he was for many years one of the representative practitioners of Pike county. He lived retired for several years prior to his death, which occurred Dec. 11, 1901. His widow still resides on the fine homestead plantation, in Pike county. Concerning their children it may be here recorded that Junius Laban is engaged in business at Osyka; James Robert died in June, 1906; Anna Moore is the widow of Otis Vaught; the subject of this sketch was next in order of birth; Willis Clinton likewise resides in Osyka; Ella is the wife of John W. Richmond; Myra Pet is the wife of Walter D. Vanado, who is engaged in the drug business in the city of New Orleans; Ema S. is the wife of James H. Jones, of Jackson, Miss.; Jesse died in infancy; and Alford resides with his mother on the home plantation, near Summit.

After availing himself of the advantages of the Summit public schools, Samuel A. Bacot continued his studies for some time in the Roanoke college, Salem, Va., and at the age of seventeen years assumed a clerical position in the store of his uncle, William Atkinson, at Magnolia.

In 1902 Mr. Atkinson and Junius L. Bacot, together with the subject of the review, organized the present William Atkinson & Bacot Company, of which the uncle is president and of which Samuel A. Bacot has been secretary and treasurer from the start. The concern handles general merchandise and has a large and well equipped establishment. The company handles annually from eight to ten thousand bales of cotton and does a general plantation supply business of large proportions.

Mr. Bacot has gained reputation as a progressive and reliable business man and his rise has been gained through merit and been fortified by personal popularity and public spirit. He is a Democrat in his political allegiance and is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, South. He is a bachelor.

Ball, Jesse Newton, M.D., is worthy of upholding the prestige if the medical profession of Pike county, being engaged in practice at Summit. The Doctor is a native of the county which is now his home, having been born in Tylertown, Dec. 22, 1864, and being a son of Daniel Newton Ball and Mary E. (Tyler) Ball, both of whom were likewise born in the State and county.

Dr. Ball received his academic education in Kavanagh college, which was then located at Holmesville, Miss., and his professional education was secured in Louisville medical college, at Louisville, Ky., where he was graduated as a member of the class of 1893, with the degree of Doctor of Medicine.

In the same year he went to Texas, where he had been practicing since June, 1890, to Oct., 1892, on a certificate, in which State he was engaged in practice until 1895, when he located in Alexandria, La., where he built up a good practice and where he remained about a decade -- until his removal to Summit, where he has met with a most favorable support and has taken rank with the leading physicians of his native county.

He is a member of various medical associations, is identified with the Masonic fraternity and he holds membership in the Methodist Episcopal church, South, his wife being a Baptist. On Jan. 6, 1897, was solemnized the marriage of Dr. Ball to Miss Lovie Brumfield, daughter of Jesse K. and Elizabeth Jane (Harvey) Brumfield, of Pike county, Miss., and they have four children, namely: Claudius Eugene, Myrtle Olive, Harold Curtis, and a baby. Dr. Ball is a Mason and a Woodman.

Collins, Frederick W., Jr., is one of the popular young business men of Summit and served for some time as postmaster of this thriving little city. He was the youngest presidential postmaster ever appointed to that position in the State and never since has there been an appointment made of that age. He was born in Pike county, Nov. 15, 1876, and here his life thus far has been passed. In this State also were born his parents, Frederick W. and Mary E. Collins, who still maintain their home in Pike County, being well known and honored citizens of this section of the State. The subject of this sketch availed himself of the advantages of the public schools of his native county and thereafter identified himself with mercantile pursuits, having been individually engaged in business for several years. He was assistant in the Summit post office for sometime and in February, 1902, he appointed postmaster, entering upon the discharge of his duties the following month. He gave a most able and satisfactory administration and is held in unqualified esteem in the community. He is a Republican in politics, so far as national issues are involved, and in local affairs maintains an independent position. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, South, and is a young man of sterling character and gracious personality. In March, 1906, Mr. Collins resigned the office of postmaster to accept a position as deputy collector of customs at Gulfport, Miss., his father being collector of customs.

Collins, Seth Woodruff, has served nearly a score of years as postmaster at McComb, Pike county, and is one of the well known and highly esteemed citizens of this, his native county, where he was born, at Tylertown, Feb. 21, 1854. He is of Scotch-Irish descent and is a son of Chauncey and Amelia (Woodruff) Collins, the former of whom was born in the State of Connecticut and the latter in Pike county, Miss., where their marriage was solemnized.

Mr. Collins was educated in the schools of his native county and after leaving school he located in Summit, Pike county, where he became assistant postmaster, his brother having been postmaster at the time. In 1881 he was appointed postmaster at McComb, under the administration of President Garfield, and he has since continued incumbent of the office save for an interval of eight years -- during the two administrations of President Cleveland. When he assumed charge of the office it was of the fourth class, and it was later advanced to the third and then to second class -- signifying the increase in business and the industrial and material development and growth of McComb.

In politics, Mr. Collins is an adherent of the Republican party, and has served many years as commissioner of elections in Pike county. In a fraternal way he is identified with the Woodman of the World.

In 1891 Mr. Collins was united in marriage to Miss Mytilene G. Daniel, daughter of George J. Daniel, who was a resident of Georgia and the children of this union are: Irma W.; George W.; Emmet McKenzie; and Seth W., Jr.

Payne, William Eugene, conducts a large and prosperous business in Collins, Covington county, where his attractively appointed department store is the center of a large and representative trade, derived from the wide radius of country normally tributary to this new and enterprising little city.

Mr. Payne was born in Pike county, Miss., Aug. 19, 1863, being thus ushered into the world at a time when the South was in the throes of the great conflict which finally trailed the loyally defended flag of the Confederacy in the dust of defeat. He is the son of Dr. Nelson R. and Margaret (Smith) Payne, both of whom were likewise born and reared in Pike county, the father having been for many years engaged in the practice of his noble profession and having been one of the honored and influential citizens of his county.

William E. Payne was afforded the advantages of public schools of Mississippi and also received excellent private instruction, being reared to maturity in Pike county. In initiating his independent career he secured a position in the mercantile establishment of Lampton Brothers in Tylertown, that county, being employed as salesman and bookkeeper and remaining in the employ of the concern for a number of years.

In 1901, shortly after the founding of the town, on the line of the newly completed railroad, he came to Collins and opened a general store, on Main street, thus gaining title to being one of the pioneer merchants of the city. His thorough knowledge of the business and his punctilious care in meeting the demands of trade enabled him to secure an excellent supporting patronage, and his original quarters soon proved inadequate to accommodate his rapidly expanding business.

In 1904 he erected his present building, which is unmistakably the finest of the sort in the town and which is thoroughly metropolitan in its appointments and in the character of stock handled in the various departments. The store room is 60x100 feet in dimensions, and with balcony, and basement gives available floor space of 12,000 feet.

In political matters, while not active as a worker, Mr. Payne is a stance Democrat and is never neglectful of the duties of citizenship, while in local affairs he takes a loyal interest and lends his aid and influence in support of those measures and enterprises which make for the well being of the community. He is identified with the Masonic fraternity, and both he and his wife hold membership in the Methodist Episcopal church, South. On Aug. 26, 1886, Mr. Payne was united in marriage to Miss Dora Sandifer, daughter of James M. and Arkansas (Rushing) Sandifer, of Tylertown, Miss., and they have one son, Percy Eugene.

Biographies submitted by Patti Smith.

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