March 31, 2011
In the very good article by Ava Barlow about some of Mary Strickland's recollections of Valley Creek, there are a few things I would like to change, correct or add.
1. Both sets of my grandparents, George Martin and Rebecca Ann McCaslin Dorsett and Sim and Mary Sophronia Riddle Jones, lived in the Valley Creek area. My parents, Charlie and Belle Dorsett Jones, along with my siblings, Charline, Maxine and Fern, lived on part of the land owned by the Dorsett grandparents. I was born in 1925 on the Jones home place where my father was born in 1891. Only the seven cedar trees which were in the front yard remain. It is two miles west from the Dorsett farm which is just south of the school house site (where the storm cellar in this article is). Our house was next to the school and my grandparents' house was a little farther south. We moved to the Dorsett home place when I was five and lived there until we moved to Dallas in 1942.
2. Regarding the graves, at least one broken tombstone could be seen by the students from the windows on the north of both rooms of the two-room school building.
3. The road to Valley Creek School from Leonard was rocked by 1937, the year I entered Leonard High School. Later, the road was finished at Randolph.
4. George and Rebecca Dorsett, my grandparents, bought the farm in 1911. The house was older, but beautiful, according to my mother. It and the barn were likely built before 1900. The barn in the picture and the house next to the school where we lived were probably built before the big house.
5. One other barn is still standing and being used. It is at the extreme south end of the property.
Mary Ann Strickland
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