Caswell County Genealogy

Bason, Samuel Murphey

Bason, Samuel Murphey

Male 1894 - 1986  (91 years)

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  • Name Bason, Samuel Murphey 
    Born 3 Dec 1894  Alamance County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Reference Number 6535 
    Died 15 Jan 1986  Danville, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried Yanceyville Presbyterian Church, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I6441  Caswell County
    Last Modified 21 Jun 2022 

    Father Bason, William Henry,   b. Dec 1846,   d. May 1927  (Age ~ 80 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Mother Murphey, Flora Green,   b. 10 Jul 1866, Alamance County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Dec 1948, Melville Township, Alamance County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 82 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Reference Number 48517 
    Family ID F3414  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Hatchett, Martha Eliza,   b. 24 Aug 1896, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 11 Mar 1993, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 96 years) 
    Married 18 Oct 1921  Prospect United Methodist Church, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Reference Number 46622 
    • Bason Wedding Anniversary 1971

      (click on photograph for larger image)

      North Carolina Marriages, 1759-1979
      marriage: 18 Oct 1921 -Yanceyville, Caswell, North Carolina
      spouse: Marnie Hatchett
      record title: North Carolina Marriages, 1759-1979
      groom's name: S. M. Bason
      groom's birth date: 1895
      groom's age: 26
      bride's name: Marnie Hatchett
      bride's birth date: 1896
      bride's age: 25
      marriage date: 18 Oct 1921
      marriage place: Yanceyville, Caswell, North Carolina
      groom's race: White
      bride's race: White
      indexing project (batch) number: M86832-7
      system origin: North Carolina-EASy
      source film number: 358272
     1. Bason, Carolyn Elizabeth,   b. 1 Dec 1922, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Jul 2015, Bethesda, Montgomery County, Maryland Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 92 years)  [natural]
    +2. Bason, William Hatchett,   b. 21 Mar 1924, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 31 Mar 2000  (Age 76 years)  [natural]
    +3. Bason, Dorothy Helen,   b. 11 Aug 1926, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 14 Nov 2011, Morganton, Burke County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 85 years)  [natural]
    Last Modified 21 Jun 2022 
    Family ID F3413  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 3 Dec 1894 - Alamance County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 18 Oct 1921 - Prospect United Methodist Church, Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 15 Jan 1986 - Danville, Virginia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Yanceyville Presbyterian Church, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Photos
    Samuel Murphey Bason
    Samuel Murphey Bason and Martha Eliza Hatchett 50th Wedding Anniversary 1971
    Samuel Murphey Bason
    Bank of Yanceyville Opens for Business
    Airplane Visits Caswell County - Brother of Sam Bason
    Dorothy Helen Bason's Nickel
    Samuel Murphey Bason Obituary
    Gunn Memorial Public Library Groundbreaking 5 June 1965

  • Notes 
    • Samuel Murphey Bason (1894-1986)



      Gunn Memorial Public Library 1965

      Airplane Visitors, The Bee (Danville, Virginia), Thursday, 17 May 1928


      (for larger image, click on photograph)

      Third Photograph: Gunn Memorial Public Library Groundbreaking 1965

      Thyra H. Smith (wife of Junius Cecil Smith)
      James Yancey Blackwell, Jr. (1928-2020)
      Thomas Harrison Whitley (1910-1997)
      John Oliver Gunn (1892-1992)
      Charles Franklin Murphy (1933-2011)
      Erwin Duke Stephens (1904-1991)
      Mary Johnston Oliver Kerr (1896-1982)
      Samuel Murphey Bason (1894-1986)
      Mabel Frances Stephens Long (1896-1984)
      George Irvin Aldridge
      David Flick (Librarian, Danville Public Library)
      Charlotte Louise Homewood (1903-1985)

      Fourth Photograph: "Airplane Visitors," The Bee (Danville, Virginia), Thursday, 17 May 1928.

      The following from The Heritage of Caswell County, North Carolina, Jeannine D. Whitlow, Editor (1985) at 274-275 was written by Carolyn Bason Long, the daughter of Sam Bason and Marnie Hatchett:

      In 1919 Samuel Murphey Bason (b. Dec. 3, 1894), son of a Confederate veteran, William H. Bason, arrived in Yanceyville from neighboring Alamance County to work in the Bank of Yanceyville. His mother, Flora Green, was a great-niece of Caswell's illustrious Archibald D. Murphey. His family home was in the Hawfields Presbyterian Church community, Swepsonville. Sam had recently returned from 22 months service in World War I. He graduated from Burlington High School where he was a baseball star, and attended Oak Ridge Academy in Guilford County. On October 18, 1921, Marnie Hatchett and Sam Bason were married at Prospect Methodist Church.

      The couple had three children: Carolyn Elizabeth (b. Dec. 1, 1922, m. U.S. Senator Russell Long, Louisiana, on Dec. 22, 1969) no children; William Hatchett Bason (b. March 21, 1924, m. Sarah Clark on Nov. 30, 1948, divorced 1983) children--Wm. H. Bason, Jr., Sarah (Sally) and Samuel Clark; Dorothy Hellen (b. Aug. 11, 1926, m. John James Burke on Aug. 20, 1955), children--Martha Carolyn (Lyn) and John J., Jr.

      Sam was Sunday School Superintendent, Deacon and Elder at the Yanceyville Presbyterian Church. The Bank of Yanceyville's motto--"The Bank Whose First Interest is Caswell"--was serving the needs of this rural county. Disaster struck--the Depression. The Bank closed. Sam Bason never stopped working to reopen its doors. When the Bank did reopen, he strugled to rebuild the institution. When he stepped down as President after 52 years, he was as proud of the Bank as a father is of his offspring!

      The Banking system was rapidly changing. With his approaching retirement, he was successful in merging the Bank with a larger bank, the Northwestern Bank, which served a similar clientele. Both Basons were active in public affairs. Sam was first president of the Rotary Club, a 33rd degree Mason and Master of his Lodge three times. As Tom Henderson, the local scribe said in 1942, ". . . Sam was foremost in getting lights, water, sewerage and fire protection."

      Sam Bason established Caswell Insurance and Realty Company which primarily sold hail insurance to tobacco farmers, and life and fire insurance. In 1937 he was appointed to the North Carolina State Highway Commission by Governor Clyde R. Hoey for a 4-year term. In 1947 he sought his first political office--a seat in the North Carolina State Senate. He was elected for four terms to represent Caswell and Rockingham Counties.

      He was fond of sports. Some summers he would journey to Washington with a group to see the Washington Senators play baseball. In the fall, he would take the family to football games at Carolina. He hunted in the red hills of Caswell County for quail.

      In September 1979, Sam Bason entered Roman Eagle Memorial Home in Danville after suffering a series of strokes. Marnie also has had health problems requiring care at home.

      Sources: Personal knowledge and family recollections.

      --Carolyn Bason Long

      From the Political Graveyard: Bason, Samuel Murphey (b. 1894) - also known as Sam M. Bason - of Yanceyville, Caswell County, N.C. Born in Swepsonville, Alamance County, N.C., December 5, 1894. Son of William Henry Bason and Flora Green (Murphey) Bason; married 1921 to Martha E. Hatchett. Democrat. Served in the U.S. Army during World War I; president, Bank of Yanceyville; owner, Caswell Insurance and Realty Company; director, North Carolina Railroad; member of North Carolina state senate 15th District, 1947-48, 1953-54, 1959. Presbyterian. Member, Rotary; Freemasons. Relatives: Married 1921 to Martha E. Hatchett.

      Each morning before Sam Bason went to his office at the Bank of Yanceyville, where he was President, he would get a shave at Richardson's Barber Shop. At one time Sam and Marnie Bason lived in a house at the corner of Cole Street and Main Street in Yanceyville, where sits today a Nationwide Insurance business. This would have been across the street from the Poteat Hotel, which became The Teacherage, where many local teachers lived. The Teacherage (Poteat Hotel) was torn down in the late 1940's. Sam and Marnie Bason built a large house in Yanceyville that today is a funeral home. The old Bason house was demolished. Sam's wife, Miss Marnie, often told the story on him that goes something like this: "Sam was President of the Bank of Yanceyville and had been personally signing the annual report to stockholders all afternoon. That evening, after blessing the meal, he ended his prayer with "Yours truly, Sam Bason." Knowing the Basons, the Good Lord did not mind!

      Samuel Murphey Bason, known as Sam Bason (December 3, 1894 - January 15, 1986), was a banker in Yanceyville, North Carolina, who served nonconsecutively from 1947 to 1959 as a Democrat in the North Carolina State Senate for District 15 in Caswell and Rockingham counties. Bason was a son of William Henry Bason (1847-1927), a veteran of the Confederate Army of the American Civil War, and the former Flora Murphey (1866-1948). He attended Burlington High School, at which he played baseball; the institution is located in Burlington in his native Alamance County in northern North Carolina. He then attended the nearby Oak Ridge Military Academy in Oak Ridge in Guilford County. He served for twenty-two months in the United States Army in World War I. He began working at the rural Bank of Yanceyville, which used the motto: "The Bank Whose First Interest is Caswell". The bank temporarily closed during the Great Depression, but Bason worked feverishly and successfully to reopen it. Prior to stepping down after fifty-two years of service, Bason managed to merge the Bank of Yanceyville with a larger institution, Northwestern Bank. Bason also established Caswell Insurance and Realty Company which sold fire, life, and hail insurance to tobacco farmers. In 1937, Governor Clyde Hoey appointed Bason to a four-year term on the North Carolina State Highway Commission. In 1947, he began serving three nonconsecutive terms in the North Carolina Senate. Source: Wikipedia

      The Bee (Danville, Virginia) 22 December 1926 (Page 12)

      Yanceyville, N .C. Dec 22 (1926) S. M. Bason, cashier of the Bank of Yanceyville, has received a message announcing the death of his sister-in-law, Mrs. J. W. Bason, at a Burlington hospital. She is survived by her husband and two small children. Burial took place at Hoffields Presbyterian church in Alamance county.

      For a mini-biography published by the Rotary Club of Yanceyville in 1942 see Wheel Tracks

      A number of well-known Caswell residents appeared as "ladies" in the Womanless Wedding held at the Caswell County Courthouse in December 1932, with Sheriff John Yancey Gatewood (1893-1954) as the bride, Dr. Steven Arnold Malloy (1872-1944) as mother of the bride, John Oliver Gunn (1892-1992) as sister of the bride, and Samuel Murphey Bason (1894-1986) as bridesmaid. It was about the only fun one could afford during the depths of the Great Depression when the Bank of Yanceyville failed (but reopened), Caswell County defaulted on its bonds, many lost their farms because they could not pay the real estate taxes due, and starvation stalked the county. The motto of The Caswell Messenger was "Buy at home and save Caswell!"

      Industrial and Agricultural Development of Caswell County by Tom Henderson

      The present Bank of Yanceyville is the only banking institution in the county today and carries the slogan, "The only bank whose first interest is Caswell County." It has a capital of $30,000 and resources of $1,250,000. During the peak of the tobacco sales last fall its deposits reached an all-time high of a million and a half. Samuel Murphey Bason, a native of Alamance County, is the friendly president and the acting cashier. The position of cashier is being held open for Staff Sergeant Earl J. Smith, who is on leave of absence in England, helping Uncle Sam in his accounting. John O. Gunn is vice president, while Webb C. Yarbrough, a former president, is chairman of the board of directors. Three attractive misses, Bernice Carroll, Marguerite Kelly and Doris Foster, help Sam in running the institution, balancing the books and in otherwise adorning the bank.

      Source: The State (A Weekly Survey of North Carolina), 22 July 1944.

      "The banks used to store all of the checks that they cashed. At some point they started running out of space. In 1918 or 1919 they started canceling the checks and returning them to their customers. When Marnie got her checks back she didn't understand so she went to the bank to to find out why. Always the tease, Sam told her that the bank didn't want her checks anymore, not telling her that everyone were also getting their checks back. Marnie got mad and stormed out. Later Sam asked her out so that he could apologize. She accepted and the rest is history." Source: Claude Lee Price, Jr., Post to the CCHA Facebook Page 13 April 2016.

      Caswell Co. Negress Left Big Estate: Will of Mrs. Sallie Wiggins Presented at Yanceyville for Probate (Special to The Bee)

      Yanceyville, N.C., Feb 23. -- The last will and testament of Mrs. Sallie W. Wiggins, widely known Caswell county resident and a descendant of the Bartlett Yancey family who died recently in a Baltimore hospital was admitted to probate here yesterday. It disposes of an estate which is given a value of about $100,000 and reveals a striking instance in which a colored woman, the daughter of an ante-bellum slave, receives most of the estate for enjoyment during her life time.

      There is unusual interest in the will in Caswell county for in the Wiggins home are antiques which are probably without their peer in this section of the country. They consist of old family furniture imported from abroad during the early pioneering days of Caswell county rich in quality, well preserved and in substantial quantity. All of these valuable antiques have been deeded to five cousins.

      Mrs Wiggins also had fine jewelry, the will listing specific bequests of seven diamond rings and bracelets some of the rings being fine solitaires, which in the aggregate represent a large sum to say nothing of other precious stones. There is no appraisal of the estate but $100,000 is considered a fair figure.

      Mrs. Wiggins also remembered a faithful tenant, Arthur Moorefield, whom she characterized as "sober and industrious." To him goes the farm "Inglewood" to enjoy as long as he lives. He can cultivate it and enjoy all the proceeds that come from it. When his son, Arthur Moorefield, Jr., becomes of age, he will step into a tidy competence for under the will he will get half the estate. One quarter of the estate will then go to Jesse James Moorefield, another son of the original beneficiary and the remaining quarter goes to his sister, Sallie Womack Moorefield who is still in her minority.

      The rest and residue of her estate Mrs. Wiggins left to Sam M. Bason, of Yanceyville, to be held in trust for her colored servant. "For years there has lived with me," she wrote in the will dated December 13, 1928, "a colored woman named Sallie Fannie Graves. She has been a faithful servant and in gratitude for her faithful service I direct that the trustee shall keep this residue of my estate invested in safe, income-bearing securities and the entire income therefrom shall be paid to Sallie Fannie Graves as long as she shall live."

      Mrs. Wiggins further provided that the payments should be made to the colored woman who had tended her through her long final illness in monthly installments. Provision also is made for the distribution of this part of the estate at the time of the colored woman's death. She ordered that the following sums be paid.

      Yanceyville Presbyterian church, $2,500; Barium Springs orphanage, $100; Mrs. Mattie Allison, $2,500; May Mebane Donoho, $1,000; Caroline Mebane Parker, $1,000; Mrs. Nannie Mebane Donoho, $2,500; Mrs. S. E. Gwynn, $1,000; Glade Valley Mission school (Presbyterian), $1,000; S. M. Bason, $500; Arthur Moorefield, Sr., $100; Pearl Smith Moorefield, $100; Woman's auxiliary of the Yanceyville Presbyterian church, $100; the remainder to be divided between Nannie Donoho and Nannie Mebane Parker.

      All of the family silver, understood to be of considerable value, was left to Mr. Bason, who is named executor of the estate. The diamond rings and jewelry, as well as the household effects including the valuable antiques, are to be divided between her following cousins: Nannie Donoho, Mary Parker, Mrs. Mattie Allison, Mrs. S. E. Gwynn and children, and Mrs. Mollie Turner and children. The whole estate is represented by land, securities and jewelry. The will was drawn by Harris, Harvey and Brown, in Danville, prior to Mrs. Wiggins' removal to a Baltimore hospital.

      Source: The Bee (Danville, Virginia), 23 February 1929, Saturday, Page 1.

      She [Betty Swindell] did for a while [live in the teacherage in Yanceyville]. She told many interesting stories about her students and her teaching experience. I think I can tell one since the principals involved approved it at the time I included it in feature article on Miss Bettie that I wrote for the Messenger in 1999. Carolyn Bason was in her first grade class. Carolyn was not happy away from home, cried every day, and begged to go home. One day she promised Miss Bettie that if she were allowed to go home that day she would return the next and not cry any more. Miss Bettie decided to grant the wish that day and allowed Carolyn to go home.

      That afternoon after school as Miss Bettie was walking downtown, Carolyn's father, Mr. Sam Bason, president of the Bank of Yanceyville, confronted Miss Bettie on the sidewalk and asked why she had yielded to Carolyn and allowed her to go home that day. According to Miss Bettie, she looked Mr. Bason straight in the eye and asked if, as president of the bank, he made all major decisions regarding the bank's affairs. He told her that indeed he did. She informed him that as teacher of the first graders she was in charge in her classroom and made the decisions regarding the well-being of her students and that on THAT particular day she had decided that it was best both for Carolyn and the rest of the class that Carolyn go home.

      True to her word, according to Miss Bettie, Carolyn returned the next day and did not cry again. At some point after that, the teacherage closed (Did it burn?) and Miss Bettie boarded with the Basons after that for the remainder of her six years in Yanceyville.

      Source: Nell Harris Page 1 November 2018 Post to Caswell County Historical Association Facebook Page.

      Caswell County History

      Samuel Murphey Bason (1894-1986) was long associated with the Bank of Yanceyville, especially at the bank building that was demolished to make way for a "modern" structure.

      However, he began work at the Bank of Yanceyville in 1919. The beautiful and now gone Bank of Yanceyville building was not completed until 1923. Thus, for four years Sam Bason worked at the bank when it was located in the building that became Crowell Auto Co. -- then, in the 1930s, Caswell Auto Co. [owned by John Oliver (Johnny) Gunn (1892-1992)].

      Source: Rick Frederick 1 April 2022 Facebook Post.

      Sam Bason on FSA Loan Competition

      In the late 1930s/early 1940s when the federal government expanded its farm loan operation through the Farm Security Administration, Yanceyville banker Samuel Murphey Bason (1894-1986) was asked about the competition.

      Sam Bason is manager of the Yanceyville Bank. As a banker Mr. Bason might be expected to object to the Farm Security Administration whose work is a key to the Land Use Planning Committee's rehabilitation program.

      "All lending agencies compete more or less, of course," said the banker, "but the Farm Security Administration is reaching the folks we could never reach. it is putting a bottom on things and raising standards all around. I thing the organization has done a great service. Some of their clients, when they get them in financial shape, become good prospects for us."

      The Durham Herald-Sun (Durham, North Carolina), 24 November 1940.

      After the Bank of Yanceyville sold out to Northwestern Bank, Sam Bason was demoted from President to Executive Vice President.

      1900 US Census
      Name: Samuel M Bason
      Home in 1900: Thompson, Alamance, North Carolina
      Age: 5
      Estimated birth year: abt 1895
      Birthplace: North Carolina
      Race: White
      Relationship to head-of-house: Son

      1930 US Census
      Name: Sam M Bason
      Age: 35
      Estimated birth year: abt 1895
      Birthplace: North Carolina
      Relation to head-of-house: Head
      Spouse's Name: Marnie Bason
      Race: White
      Home in 1930: Yanceyville, Caswell, North Carolina

      Death Record
      Name: Samuel Murphey Bason
      Death Date: 15 Jan 1986
      Death State: Virginia
      Death Age: 91
      Burial Location: Burial out of state
      Birth Date: 3 Dec 1894
      Birth Location: North Carolina
      Residence County: Caswell
      Residence State: North Carolina
      Father: B
      Gender: Male
      Race: White
      Marital Status: Married
      Social Security Number: 241012540
      Autopsy: No
      Institution: Nursing and Rest Homes
      Attendant: Physician
      Source: North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. North Carolina Death Records, 1968-1996. North Carolina Vital Records, Raleigh, North Carolina