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The Mount Ayr Record-News, 1925


Sams gravestone.jpg Deborah WRIGHT, daughter of John and Agnes WRIGHT, was born at Whitely, Green county, Pennsylvania, October 24, 1831. Here she grew to womanhood and was married to Eli SAMS of Davistown, Pa., February 19th, 1860. TO this union was born six children, all of whom are living except the oldest son, Minor, who died six years ago. The children are as follows: Delphene SAMS, of Diagonal, Iowa; Minor H., deceased; Mrs. G. E. Prentis, of Detroit, Mich.; Wayne T., of Benton, Iowa; Mrs. Jas. L. BURDETTE, of Diagonal, Iowa; and Mrs. John ROBINSON, of Mount Ayr, Iowa.

Her first home was established in Pennsylvania, where she lived for a few years, but later deciding that better opportunites were offered in what then known as "The West." She, with her husband and family moved to Iowa in the fall of 1868, settling on a farm in Taylor county, some miles east of Beford, living there only two years when they purchased and moved to the farm still known as the SAMS estate near Delphos, Iowa. Like most homes of those early pioneer days this one was ever open to friend or stranger for generosity and hospitality were some of the outstanding features of her character.

Though her education was limited to only such as could be obtained in the subscription schools of her childhood days she was a great reader and a close student of her Bible. She became a christian early in life and united with the Baptist church when nineteen years of age and remained an earnest, consistant christian throughout the remainder of her long and useful life.

The husband and father preceded her in death some 23 years.

She still remained in the old home until ten years ago when the infirmities of old age rendered it impossible for her daughter, Delphene, who was the only one remaining in the home, to further care for her alone and she was persuaded to make her home with her married daughters.

The last year of her life was spent in the home of her daughter, Mrs. Jas. BURDETTE, where she was most tenderly cared for but gradually grew more feeble though she still maintained her ambitioins, determination to be ever busy until only a few days before her death which occurred Wednesday evening, January 21, 1925, when she laid aside her Bible quietly folded her hands to rest and seemed to be only waiting to rest and just as the sun sank in the west so peacefully did her spirit slip away to the unknown shore that to the loved ones watching beside her bed it was almost impossible to realize Grandma had gone to sleep.

The following poem which she loved to read more nearly describes her going.

"Sometime at eve when the tide is low,
I shall slip my mooring and sail away,
With no response to the friendly hail,
Of kindred craft in the busy bay,
In the silent hush of the twilight pale,
When the night stoops down to embrace the day,
And the voices call in the water's flow--
Sometime at eve when the tide is low,
I shall slip my moorings and sail away.

"Through purple shadows that darkly trail
O'er the ebbing tide of the unknown sea,
I shall fare me away with a dip of sail
And a ripple of waters to tell the tale
Of a lonely voyager, sailing away
To mystic isles, where at anchor lay
The craft of those who have sailed before
O'er the unknown sea to the unknown shore.

"A few who have watched me sail away
Will miss my craft from the busy bay;
Some friendly barks that were anchored near,
Some loving souls that my heart held dear
In silent sorrow will drop a tear.
But I shall have peacefully furled my sail
In moorings sheltered from storm or gale,
And greeted the friends who have sailed before,
O'er the unknown sea to the unknown shore."

Beside the five living children she leaves to mourn her departure ten grandchildren, five great- grandchildren, a number of nieces and nephews and a host of friends.

She was 93 years, two months and 29 days old at the time of her death and while we shall sadly miss her in our homes we fell that heaven is richer for her going and the influence of her noble christian life will live on in the hearts of her loved ones and those who knew her best.

Funeral services were held Saturday afternoon at one o'clock from the Baptist church in Mount Ayr, conducted by Rev. Orr CAMPBELL, of Humeston, and the interment was in Benton cemetery.


Card of Thanks.

We take this means of expressing to the neighbors and friends our heart-felt thanks for the many acts of kindness and sympathy during the illness and on the occasion of the death and funeral of our mother and for the many beautiful floral tributes.

Sams gravestone.jpg NOTE: Eli SAMS, husband of Deborah (WRIGHT), was born December 24, 1824, and died February 13, 1902 with interment at Benton Cemetery, Benton, Ringgold County, Iowa. Of Eli and Deborah (WRIGHT) SAMS' children: Delphene SAMS was born in 1860, and died in 1956 with interment at Benton Cemetery; and Minor H. SAMS was born November 10, 1862, and died September 15, 1918 and was interred at Benton Cemetery beside his wife, Myrtle J. (STEPHENSON) SAMS who was born March 11, 1871, and died April 15, 1909.

Transcription and note by Sharon R. Becker, 2008

To submit your Ringgold County obituaries, contact Sharon R. Becker at
Please include the word "Ringgold" in the subject line. Thank you.

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