The Family of John Lafayette Corn and Charlotte Flynn/Flinn
My Corn Family lived in a beautiful valley in
Madison County, North Carolina called Grapevine. Grapevine is near Mars Hill,
NC. They were my great maternal grandparents, John Lafayette Corn
and Charlotte Flynn/Flinn Corn. He was a blacksmith, and probably farmer,
when he lived in Grapevine. John’s brother William had earlier gone
off to find his fortune in a place called Glendale in South Carolina.
John and Charlotte had a growing family of eight. In 1894,
while still in Grapevine, tragedy hit their family hard. Their
oldest child and two others were stricken with a disease and died. They
died on the 9th, 13th and the 27th of August, 1894. Probably this,
and the hope for a better life, drove them to leave their home and the families
they grew up with. The Coates family, relatives of Charlotte, were also
already in the Glendale area. (See Coates Family.)
The Sams family of Glendale also came from Grapevine.
John, Charlotte, and the five remaining children were met at the
depot in Spartanburg, sometime between 1894 and 1904, by members of the
Coates (Coats) family. The five children were: Charles, Addie, Robert,
Bess and Ada. A story that was told about my grandmother, Addie, was
that on the way from Spartanburg to Glendale, someone gave her some “refreshment”.
By the time she arrived in Glendale she was sitting on the back of the wagon
picking a guitar and singing. She was around fifteen years old at
that time. With a red face, she would deny the story when anyone teased her
I don’t know, exactly, where they first lived in Glendale.
I know they lived in a house across from the old school and the house
on Broadway Street. There was a man by the name of Jack McKinney,
my great grandfather, who owned land a mile or so out of the village,
toward Clifton. John Corn contracted with him to buy land and build
a house on a loan held by McKinney. In 1904, John and Charlotte
were living in the house on Clifton/Glendale Road. John was still working
with the Mill and the children, who were old enough, walked to work in the
Mill. During the time they were living there, Addie Corn married Andrew
McKinney, son of Jack McKinney. Their first child, John Leroy, was born
in that house in 1909. Sometime after that date, Jack McKinney foreclosed
on John Corn’s loan. I think that was when they moved to house in Broadway
across from the Wesleyan Methodist Church. Talk about in-law trouble!!
In 1899 and 1900, two more children were born, Sallie and Arthur.
They lived only a few months and are buried in the Glendale Cemetery
with their parents and sisters, Bess and Ada. (See Cemeteries.) Charlotte lived until
Dec. of 1910 when she died at the age of 50. Charlotte and John had ten
children, five died in infancy and five lived to adulthood. She was a
very quite lady and worked hard to care for her family.
I think that John Corn’s blacksmith work was in a shop on the Gobbler’s
Knob side of the river. I have never heard anyone say exactly where that
was. I have heard that he also tried having his own shop at some time.
He died in 1944 at the age of 85. He was well taken care of by his youngest
daughters, Bess and Ada. They never married and worked in the mill and
lived there with him until his death. I remember visiting him when he was
very old. He didn’t talk much except to Bess or my daddy. He set by the
heater in a rocking chair and always had a pipe in his mouth. In the summer
he set on the swing on the front porch. The pipe still in his mouth, he
would watch the Glendale people go by and some would wave or stop to speak
That house on Broadway was a place of delight for all nieces
and nephews or any other child that happened to visit. After the death
of their parents, Bessie was in charge. She worked in the mill and in later
years so did Ada. She kept the bottom drawer of her refrigerator
stocked with candy, especially Hershey bars. No child ever left her house
without at least one candy bar. Anytime of the day unannounced visitors
could find a meal ready as if you were expected. In the sixth grade at
the old Glendale School, you were allowed to go home for lunch, if you
lived closed enough. Frankie Corn and I would run down the hill to Bessie
and Ada’s house. We would find lunch and all the candy we wanted.
Another treat for children visiting that house, was a trip
to Spot Hopper's Store. This required walking over the bridge with Bessie.
First thing was to keep up with her fast walk, she never took a leisurely
pace. Then you had to walk on the wooden walk way over the river with
some planks missing. I realize that the gaps were small but to my little
feet and legs it seemed like hurling myself over rushing water as wide
as a canyon. I often had bad dreams about the trips. BUT! At the end of
the ordeal was a store of wondrous things. Bessie would say, “Pick out what
you want.” Such a statement to tell a little child!
Neighbors of the Corn house, who were expecting special company,
knew where to find a dessert treat. Ada could make the best cakes you
ever tasted. All ingredients were fresh and no electric tools were used
to make the cakes. Ada beat the cakes by hand in the old fashion
way. My Dad was their favorite nephew and her Orange Slice cake
was his favorite. She was the only one who could bake it just right
(The three Corn Sister in the 1940's. From the left - Ada Victoria,
Addie Lee, and Bessie May.)
The five Corn children were all raised in Glendale and most of
them raised their families in or close to Glendale.
Charles Blane married Susie Jeanette Crocker and they had
four children.(See Crocker Family.)
Addie Lee married Andrew Jackson McKinney and they had
(Click on this link to see
the biographies of Andrew Jackson McKinney and Addie Corn McKinney, with
Click on this link for more
information on the McKinney family.
Robert married Nettie Bradley
Bessie May never married.
Ada Victoria never married.
This one family branched out to marry into other Glendale
families with such names as: Cudd, Thomas, McKinney, Hammett, Crocker,
Dunagin, Sams, Coates (Coats). They all have their story of how
they came to be in Glendale.
This web site has been started as a public
service to share the story of Glendale. The web master and person
to contact about putting information on the web site is Mary McKinney
Teaster. Contact her at:
or by telephone at (843) 873-8117. See more
information about Mary and her Glendale connection at Mary McKinney Teaster.