Written and Published Online by John Silver

w/contributing articles by various Silver cousins



Dear Cousins and Friends,


Looks like the summer is coming to an end. And it has been a hot one here in Delaware. The corn and other crops are ruined by drought and the farmers are suffering. During our drought, the rest of the country has been drowning. I think we can count our blessings.

As you will note, John Silver Harris has carried the day for me. I have been derailed for the past eight weeks with a monster case of shingles. So I wish to thank you, John, for all the help rendered. John, as you know is an excellent writer and story-teller. I know you will enjoy his words.

We had a request from Rema Ogle asking if anyone has a picture of Edmund Drury Silver, the founder of Blue Rock Baptist Church. The members are writing a history of the church and would like to have a copy of the picture of its founder. Rema is a great-great-granddaughter of Edmund and is seeking information on Edmund’s descendants. I know she would be appreciative of any help you might offer.  Rema she can be reached at [email protected], or if you prefer old-fashioned methods:

Rema Ogle

725 Riceville Rd. #4

Asheville, NC

PH: 828-298-6261


We also received a card from Jackie Haynes. She has moved from Greenville, SC to San Antonio, TX. I know she would love to hear from family and friends as it has been a difficult task for her.  If you would like to send her a card, her new address is:

Ms. Jackie Haynes

24246 Saffron P.

San Antonio, TX  78261


Until next month … Cousin John



A letter from John Silver Harris …


Hi John,

I’m sorry that you are having such a tough time with shingles.

Regarding shingles, I can personally commiserate with you. I wrote about my outbreak a couple of years ago and maybe now’s an appropriate time for me to share our miseries. The column follows:



Suffering with John Harris


Shingles — it’s an oddball malady, with an oddball name.

And until a few days ago, it was something that afflicted only other people. Then I noticed a soreness in my back when I bent over the wash basin. Probably a sprain, I figured, from bending over the computer too long or lifting that bag of Sakrete.

Later, I noticed an outbreak of red splotches above my left elbow. That was on a Friday night, of course. And my doctor’s office was closed for the weekend. It got progressively worse, spreading and blistering. So, first thing Monday morning, I called the dermatologist requesting an appointment as soon as possible. Tuesday, 4 p.m. was the best I could do.

By that time was my entire upper arm was covered with splotchy red lesions.

“Shingles,” was the dermatologist’s instant, one-word diagnosis.

He prescribed pills (even with my HMO, required a co-pay of $174 — OUCH!) and an ointment (with no co-pay, which I liked a lot better.)

Shingles, I learned, has both visible (the lesions mentioned earlier) and the invisible effects (aching nerves in various parts of the body). Because of the intense pain while standing, I had to break my teeth-brushing into two sessions, resting in between.

I found I was most at ease in my lounge chair, so I did a lot of reading. In that reading I learned that the culprit in shingles is a virus called Herpes Zoster—the chickenpox virus. Anyone who had chickenpox is a likely candidate for shingles later in life. After chickenpox, you figure it’s gone forever, but the virus simply hibernated into your nerves, lurking there to launch another attack even after more than half a century, as in my case.

And while you have chickenpox once and it’s over, shingles can recur. So you’re never fully home free. But already I feel like I’ve paid my dues. Too much is enough! And here’s hoping that you never have to learn first hand.


(Thank you John for commiserating with me. The only difference in our cases was the fact that I had them from the right side of my spine around my waist up onto the rib cage. After eight weeks, the lesions are beginning to dry but the pain is just as severe as it was when I was attacked. I am going to have several beautiful scars as souvenirs. But you other folks can rest easy! There is now an inoculation available to prevent both chickenpox and shingles. Naturally, I had to find this out the hard way. Ed.)



How I happened to search for UtopiA

By John Harris


As a lifelong newsman, I’ve had my share of rotten reporting assignments — assorted disasters, political rallies, and boring, seemingly endless city council meetings.

But once, I lucked out to get what has to be the world’s finest journalist assignment of all time: travel the world on an unlimited expense account, and go from one beautiful place to another, in a search for Utopia.

It was this assignment, in fact, that lured me from a mainstream daily for a stint in the wacky world of tabloids.

Here is how it happened: As a Cincinnati-area daily reporter in the early 1970s, I had been augmenting my modest salary doing free-lance assignments for the National-Enquirer on weekends. I dealt with the office by phone and mail.

The Enquirer paid well and on a good weekend I could make as much as the daily paid me for the entire week.

Soon, I had accumulated enough funds for the wife and me to take a Caribbean cruise.  On the return trip, I stopped at the office of the Enquirer which had recently moved from New Jersey to the tiny town of Lantana, Florida. I wanted to see where all those checks were coming from and encourage the editors there to keep them coming.

 “Why don’t you come to work with us?” an editor invited. “I need a reporter to send on an assignment around the world.”

Around the world! That nearly floored me. Around the world! What an opportunity. A big assignment for me had been traveling to Cleveland or Columbus. Going to Chicago, Washington or New York was a super biggie.

Articles editor Selig Adler then showed me the assignment sheet: “Is there really a Utopia left in this world? What’s it like to live in Tahiti and those other pipedream paradises? “Let’s send a reporter to write series of articles.”

The assignment sheet had owner-publisher Gene Pope’s initials, indicating approval. This was important. It would take big bucks to pull this one off.

And yet, I had every reason not to take a job with the Enquirer. I didn’t want it on my resume (the old guts and gore aura of years earlier still lingered over the paper in many minds even though it had cleaned up its act several years earlier). And it was generally viewed as a gossip rag.

I had already learned, too, that the Enquirer was a revolving door, with staffers fired on a whim. On the other hand, my wife and I both had secure jobs. We owned a home in the Cincinnati area and my two step-sons were in school there.

Common sense told me no. And yet, “around the world” kept spinning through my head, even keeping me awake at night. Finally, I decided that if I didn’t take this offer, I would spend the rest of my life wondering what it would have been like.

Well, I had my price. And the Enquirer met it. That waiting globe girdling assignment, a salary that topped the New York Times, and an opportunity to swap that Ohio snow, sleet and slush for the sun, sand and surf of South Florida finally proved overwhelmingly seductive.

So, the next month I was in Florida as an Enquirer reporter.

After getting shots for a host of exotic diseases that I had hardly heard of and obtaining numerous visas, I set out and spent four-and-a-half months island-hopping around the world, sizing up the Utopian qualities of each.

The itinerary was a dream. A few ports of call: Madeira, the Azores, the Canaries, the Spanish Mediterranean islands, the Greek Islands, the Channel Islands (Guernsey, Jersey and Sark), the Scottish isles if Mull and Gigha, Hawaii (Molokai), Tahiti, Moorea, Bora Bora, Fiji, Samoa, Bali, Sri Lanka, the Seychelles, Mauritius and other places too numerous to mention.

My assignment was to find out if there really was an island paradise where one could get away from it all and live in peace, beauty and harmony with nature. Or had all those fabled beautiful places that comprise our pipe dreams been spoiled with the encroachments of modern civilization?

I found that indeed it had, at least to a degree. An island is no longer an island once a runway is built there. It’s then open to the world.

And it was illusion shattering to be in Tahiti, French Polynesia, in the middle of the South Pacific and witness a rush-hour traffic jam (Renaults and motor scooters) in its main town, Papeete. And this “paradise” also had parking meters — believe it or not. Hardly a Utopia, this.

I thought American Samoa might be a Pacific paradise with plumbing. But, to my dismay, I learned that the Samoans seemingly have picked up our bad habits, but little of our industriousness. It’s disillusioning to see an otherwise picture-postcard-perfect lagoon littered with beer cans.

But, despite modern encroachments in many far corners of the world, there are still spectacularly beautiful places well worth visiting. Certainly, the blue lagoons, lush green mountains and golden sunsets of Bora Bora are no less gorgeous now that there are hotels, where you can eat and sleep in comfort. Back in the old unspoiled days, while visiting there, you had to hunt up a native family willing to share their hut.

If I had to pick the most pleasant of all places I visited, it would be Western Samoa, with the friendly, happy people who love to sing and dance. And there you have the beauty of both towering mountains and palm-fringed lagoons all within view.

I’m always asked if I found a Utopia. No, not really.

Anyway, Utopia may be more of a state of mind that a physical place.

For example, I found my Utopia when I got that around-the-world, all-expense-paid assignment to search for it.



Memories of a departed Silver cousin


Henry Lee Silver

 (1909 – 2001)


Part 2: Naval Service during World War II


Henry Lee Silver was born May 13, 1909 – a seventh generation descendant of George Silver Sr., via his father, David Alonzo Silver and grandfathers, John, Alfred, Jacob and George Silver Jr.

The following is an account of his adult life as told to nephew John Silver Harris:

After graduating from Morganton, NC, high school in 1930, the Great Depression was underway and work in North Carolina was hard to come by. So, I joined my brother, John Clarence, who had earlier gone to Philadelphia to work. He had found a job in the pharmacy at John D. Lankenau Hospital there. I also got a job at the same hospital, greeting and directing visitors in the 10-story German Lutheran facility.

I later returned to North Carolina and worked for my father in sawmilling for a short while.

Then, in 1934, I began work for Hobbs Peabody, a construction company. There I learned to operate bulldozers, cranes, power shovels and ditchers. I worked there for the next nine years until World War II was underway.

I then volunteered for the Navy. I was sworn in at Camp Croft near Spartanburg, SC, on March 22, 1943, and then sent to a new camp at Bainbridge, MD, for boot training.

After eight weeks of boot camp, I was reassigned to the Fleet Sound School at Key West, FL, where I spent the next two months learning to be a sonar operator.

My mission was to operate shipboard equipment which sent sound waves underwater to echo off any submerged object and thereby reveal its presence. Our primary purpose was to locate Nazi submarines which were preying on North Atlantic shipping.

From Key West, I went to Norfolk, VA, this time to attend the Navy’s destroyer escort school.

From there, I went to Boston, where I spent a month waiting for construction to be completed on my assigned ship – the USS Lee Fox – which was still in dry dock at nearby Hingham shipyard.

When the ship was outfitted, we brought it into Boston Harbor where we took on supplies. Next, was a shakedown cruise to Bermuda, where we docked for two weeks.

Then it was back to the harbor in New York City, where we began convoy duty, making eight round trips to Londonderry in Northern Ireland, one to Plymouth, England and another to Scotland.

In December 1944, a German sub attacked our convoy. My ship was not hit but another was and seventeen men were killed. One of our ships was sunk, but fortunately, it was one of the already damaged ships we had under tow for return to the U.S.

When the war in Europe ended in early 1945, the USS Lee Fox was converted from a destroyer escort to an auxiliary landing ship, carrying four landing boats, four jeeps and a contingent of 150 Marines for assaults on Japanese-held islands in the Pacific.

We then sailed out of New York southward through the Panama Canal to Hawaii and on to the Philippines.

I was in Leyte Gulf in the Philippines when the war ended in August 1945. Then we went into Yokohama Bay, Japan.

My ship’s mission then was to disarm the Japanese bay islands, moving and dumping ammunition and other war material. My assignment was to carry a walkie-talkie radio to maintain contact between crewmen on the islands and the ship.

By late November 1945, I had enough points for discharge, so I boarded a repair ship, the USS Avery Island, and headed home. By that time I was a petty officer second class. I was discharged from the Navy at Nashville, TN, on December 18, 1945, and arrived back at parents’ home in North Carolina in time to join them for Christmas.

 On January 11, 1946, I began work at Table Rock Furniture Co. in Morganton. A couple of years later, Drexel Furniture Co. bought it.

It turned out to be a 29-year career for me, continuing until I retired as a furniture inspector on December 30, 1974.


(In his retirement years, Lee and his wife, Theresa Kincaid Silver, lived on N.C. Highway 181 north of Morganton near El Bethel Baptist Church, where he was treasurer for over 25 years and also taught a senior men’s Sunday school class. He was an avid gardener and handyman, who enjoyed helping neighbors fix anything that needed fixing.)

(Lee and Theresa had a daughter, Marilyn Virginia Silver, born February 9, 1951 and a son, Dennis Lee Silver, born July 1, 1956.)

(Theresa lived until May 21 1996 and Lee lived until June 4, 2001.)



This is a nice letter from John Harding that I received in June of this year.  It gives us a lot of insight to early Kona. Thanks, John, we appreciate it. (Ed.)


My brother, Ben Harding, thought the attached would be a good picture to be scanned into a historical record of people and things in Kona years ago.

In this picture are my mother, Mildred Gladys Wise Harding, born May 18, 1918; my father, Arthur H. Harding, Jr., born September 13, 1917; Me, John N. Harding, born January 17, 1940 and my brother, Floyd Bennett “Ben” Harding, born September 5, 1938.

The picture was made on Dad’s birthday in 1944 as we stood in front of our little two-room house covered in an asphalt based material called, “brick siding.” This house was located on property that Wayne Silver told me a few years ago, was the “old Stinchcomb Place.” It was rumored, according to Wayne, that money or some other type of items were buried or concealed on the property. To the best of my knowledge, if there was something there, it’s still there.

I can faintly recall an existing old house being torn down to make room for the new one. Already on the property was a large barn with at least four stalls, a spring house, a wood shed, an outhouse and a one-stall livestock shed down the hill behind the house next to the woods. Our only cow died in the large barn which was later torn down. I don’t know if the first event caused the event caused the second. George Pittman’s oldest son, Asbury, assisted by his second son, Frank, used a team of horses to drag the cow over the top of the hill to the left facing the house to be dispose of down an abandoned mine shaft.

We moved to this house in ’43 or ’44 from the large two-story, white, frame house that is on the other side of the road going down the hill to Kona opposite the new Baptist Church that started out as a Methodist Church. This house was owned by John Nelson and his first wife, Anetta Silver, who had one surviving child, Dortha Elizabeth. Anetta died of complications of and during her second pregnancy. My grandfather, Arthur Hardin(g) Sr. had died during the flu epidemic of 1918, leaving his widow, my grandmother Mildred Raby Hardin(g) with one child, My Dad. John and Mildred met and married. As it worked out, I married Dortha Silver Kennedy’s second daughter, Christine Victoria “Chris.”


(George Silver Sr. > George Silver Jr. > Rev. Jacob Silver > William Jacob Silver > Samuel Jacob Patton Silver > Annetta Elsie Silver m. John Nelson > Dortha Silver Nelson m. Arthur B. Kennedy Jr. > Christine Victoria Kennedy m. John N. Harding.)





Gaynelle “Gail” Silver
March 22, 1922 – Aug 9, 2007



WEAVERVILLE – Gaynelle “Gail” Silver, 85, of Weaverville died Thursday, August 9, 2007.

Mrs. Silver was a native of Greenville, SC and lived in Buncombe County. She was a member of First Baptist Church, Marshall. Gaynelle was the daughter of the late Sidi H. and Annie Grubbs.

Surviving is her husband of 58 years, Harry G. Silver and daughter, Edna Ann Lindsay and her husband, Raeford all of Weaverville.

Funeral services will be held at 2:30 p.m., Sunday in the Chapel of Madison Funeral Home with the Rev. Dr. Stephen Loftis officiating. A Committal Service will be held at 5:00 p.m., Sunday in Silver Chapel Baptist Church. Burial will be in the church cemetery.

The family will receive friends from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., Sunday at the funeral home prior to the funeral services.

Flowers are acceptable and appreciated.

To offer condolences and sign Mrs. Silver's guest book, please visit


George Silver Sr. > George Silver Jr. > Rev. Jacob Silver > William Jacob Silver > William Milton Silver > Frederick Edwin Silver > Harry Gayle Silver m. Gaynelle Elizabeth Grubbs.



Goldsboro News Argus
November 1, 2005

Dr. Jack SilverS
February 20, 1924 – October 31, 2005



VESTAVIA HILLS, Ala. -- Dr. Jack E. Silvers died Monday.

Dr. Silvers practiced orthodontics in Goldsboro until his retirement.

He earned his undergraduate degree in pharmacy, his doctorate of dental science and his masters of science in orthodontics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

A native of Morganton, he was the son of Corbitt L. Silvers and Ida C. Silvers. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II in the Pacific Theater.

He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Grace P. Silvers; one daughter, Susan Marcel Silvers of Hoover, Ala.; four sisters, Merle Koester of Asheville, Lena Campbell of Sethersfield, Conn., and Nelda Edwards and Joyce Garrison of Hoover, Ala.

The funeral will be held by the graveside on Wednesday at 11 a.m. at Southern Heritage Memorial Gardens in Pelham, Ala.

The family will receive friends afterward at the home of Nelda Edwards, 3234 Heathrow Downs, in Hoover.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hope Hospice, P.O. Box 10304, Birmingham, Ala., 35202; or to The Smile Train, Suite 2201, 245 Fifth Ave., New York, N.Y., 10016.


(George Silver Sr. > George Silver Jr. > Thomas Silver > Jacob William Silver > Creed William Silver > Corbitt Lee Silvers > Dr. Jack E. Silvers)



Asheville Citizen-Times
September 18, 2005

Judy Silver Hall


Candler - Judy Faye Silver Hall, 60, of 659 Monte Vista Road, went to be with her Jesus, Thursday, Sept. 15, 2005.

A native of Buncombe County, she was a daughter of the late John Joseph and Emma Edwards Silver. She was an employee of Sayles Bleachery and was preceded in death by her brother, Jimmy Silver (3-4-2005).

Surviving are her husband, David Dennis Hall, son, Jeffrey Hugh Hensley (Kristi) of Candler; two step daughters, Julia Iafolla (John) of Charlottesville, Va., and Lori Nelson (Eric) of Knoxville, Tenn., two brothers, Dale Silver (Pansy) of Marshall and Troy Silver (Shirley) of Old Fort; and seven grandchildren.

The funeral service will be at 11 a.m. Monday at Patton Cove Gospel Mission of which she was a member. The Revs. Paul E. Norton, James R. Lamb and Royce Dockery will officiate. Burial will be at Green Hills Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday at Penland & Sons Funeral Home, Swannanoa and after the receiving of friends, the family will be at the home of the mother-in-law, Helen T. Hall of Buckeye Cove, Swannanoa.


(George Silver Sr. > George Silver Jr. > Greenberry Silver > David Hamilton Silver > Joseph G. Silver > Edward Silver > John Silver > Judy Silver)



John Silver
Genealogist & Editor
64S Fairfield Drive
Dover, DE 19901
[email protected]

Barney Kaufman
7408 Lake Drive
Manassas, VA 20111-1960
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