(Mary Foster Lee Denson)



John H. Smallwood, Jr.

Copyright Ó 1997-1999, all rights reserved

The death of this excellent Christian woman brought great sadness to a happy home and to very many sympathising [sic] hearts. "We knew her in her dewy youth," when the rose was first in bloom. She and we were two of a party of 26 happy converts who "put on the Christ by baptism" as among the results of a gracious religious revival at dear old Jerusalem church in Scott County, back in the fifties. It was also our honor and pleasure to have the part of the best man when she became the happy bride of Dr. J. N. Denson, one of the dearest and best friends of a lifetime. She seemed to possess most or all of those traits that go to make up the truest type of genuine womanhood and would have adorned any home in the land from a humble cottage to a mansion or palace. Her accomplishments, though raised a country girl, were of such a high order that she was the center of attraction in a large and intelligent community, and afterwards developed easily into the model home-maker, affectionate wife, the devoted mother, the helpful neighbor and the never neglectful friend. Her religion was not of the moody or flickering character, but has permanent and staying qualities, and therefor gave coloring and beautiful consistency to all she did.

This good woman was the daughter of Bro. And Sister H. B. Lee and was born in Stewart county [sic], Ga., on October 19, A. D. , 1840, came with her parents to Mississippi and settled near Ludlow, Scott county [sic], in 1851. She was converted and baptised into the fellowship of Jerusalem Baptist church [sic] in August 1855, was married to Dr. J. N. Denson October 23, 1856 and died at Tuscola, Leake county [sic], Miss, on December 21, 1895. So devoted were her family to her that her two grown up sons , Robert Lee, a teacher, and Jas. O., a physician, when they learned of her serious sickness, started at once and traveled day and night many weary miles overland that they might, if possible, be with her in her last moments. We are not surprised to be told that this pure woman "was ready to go" when the summons came and to respond with alacrity to the enquiry of her heart-broken husband, "Yes, if it is Godís will, I am ready to go."

She was followed to her last resting place by a large concourse of sorrowing friends which gave ample proof of the high regard in which she was held by her friends and neighbors. We hope some day before very long to go with our sorrowing brother and the dear little motherless boy, "Charlie Hackett," and read with them the inscription he has put on her memorial stone- "A faithful wife, a devoted mother and a friend to all, " as true words we doubt not as ever were written- and mingle our tears with theirs in mourning for the loved and gone, but amid it all to rejoice with them in the hope o a heavenly and blissful immortality. May God of al grace and consolation sustain our brother and his dear children in their great bereavement and at last bring them all together again an unbroken and happy family in His everlasting kingdom.

Source: John H. Smallwood, Jr., The Denson Family of Scott County, Mississippi(Canton, MS: privately published, 1997), p. 83. Obituary of Mary Foster (Lee) Denson, by Charles Hackett. Copy courtesy of Pauline (Denson) Wood, Louisville, MS


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