Robert Holder, Constable
Story furnished by Clarence Crocker


According to the 1880 census, Robert Gary Holder was born in 1869 in Union County, S.C. He was the son of James B. Sr. and Nancy Holder and had five siblings; William-13, Edward-8, Ruby-(Ruth)5, Nannie-3 and James Jr.-11mo. The 1900 census shows that his brother Edward had married a lady by the name of Corrie (Carrie) and had one daughter, (Beulah), and was living in Pacolet, S. C. Another brother, James Jr, was also married and living in Pacolet. His wife’s name was Rosa.

While the 1910 census shows Robert’s occupation as vegetablemeat market operator, records show he served as the local Constable for several years in the early 1900s, retiring in the late twenties due to health problems. Reportedly, he sold his gun to Will Quinn who succeeded him as village policeman. Robert was a member of the Glendale Methodist Church and the Glendale Woodman of the World. 

Robert was twice married. He first married Annie Lucy Kennedy, the daughter of John L. and Mary Kennedy of Jonesville, Union County, S. C. The 1880 census shows she was born in 1868 and had one sister, Mary and three brothers, John Robert, David and one who’s name is illegible. After marriage they moved to Whitestone, S.C. While the exact date of Lucy Kennedy Holder’s birth, death and interment are unknown, records show she died in 1895 during or shortly after childbirth. Robert Gary and Annie Lucy Kennedy Holder were the parents of three children; Florence, John D. and Ada. 

His second marriage was to Alice Smith, a native of Gowdeysville, Union County S.C., the daughter of John Steven and Eliza Wood Smith. The 1880 census indicates that she was born in 1878 and that she had two sisters, names illegible and one brother, Oscar. The 1910 census indicates that Robert and Alice married about 1897 following the untimely death of Robert’s first wife. They were living in Whitestone at the time of their marriage and became the parents of two daughters while living there, Bonnie and Annie Mae Holder. 

They moved to Glendale about 1905-6 after which Lucy and Ruby Holder were born. The 1920 census listed Robert Gary Holder as head of household, living in Glendale with his wife Alice, his son John, his daughters Annie, Lucy and Ruby. His daughter Bonnie and her husband Charles Thompson, were also living with him. They lived in a six room house on Holy Hill now called Chapel Street. Robert had lived the last 27 years of his life in Glendale when he died in his home at the age of 63 on Saturday morning, December 31, 1932, following a long period of illness. 

Funeral services were held in the Glendale Methodist Church January 1, 1933 at 3 P.M. Rev. J. W. Tomlinson, Rev. H. B. Koon, officiating. Interment followed in the Holder square in the Glendale Community Cemetery. Pallbearers were; Luther Burgess, Luther Holder, Jessie Lemaster, Edwin Holder, Herman Warren, Winfred Linder. Flower bearers were; Misses Clarice Humphries, Grace Hames, Emily Lemaster, Helen Holder, Gladys Thompson and Mae Lillie Mabry. 

Survivors were listed as two sisters, Mrs. Ruth Burgess of Glendale, Mrs. Nannie Lemaster of Ben Avon;. three brothers, Will Holder, Hot Springs, N.C., E. R. Holder of Spartanburg and J. T. Holder of Ben Avon; A number of grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces and nephews. At some point before his death he left a note to his wife regarding a bad cloud storm that was gathering.

Alice Smith Holder died at age of 85 on Sunday morning April 26, 1964 in a Spartanburg Nursing home. She had been living with her daughter Lucy Holder Blanton, before being confined to the nursing home. She had lived in Glendale for some 58 years and was an active member of the Glendale Methodist Church. Funeral services were held at M. W. Bobo Funeral Chapel, Spartanburg, S. C. on Tuesday afternoon April 28, 1964 at 4 PM. Revs. James Grigsby, Timothy Hottel and Jack Hames officiated. Interment followed in Holder Square in the Glendale Community Cemetery. Grandsons served as Pallbearers. 

Survivors were; four daughters, Mrs. Charles (Bonnie) Thompson and Mrs Joe (Lucy) Blanton, both of Glendale, Miss Annie Holder and Mrs. Ruby Snow, both of Washington, D. C.; five grandchildren and fourteen step grand children. 

The children’s records; Ada Holder Mabry, born in Whitestone, S. C., Spartanburg County. died at the age of 57 at her home on Crescent Ave. in Spartanburg on Friday May 9, 1952. She was the widow of Samuel Erwin Mabry who had died at the age of 56 in May, 1948. Survivors were; two sons, Lewis and Sam Mabry of Spartanburg; four daughters, Mrs. J. C. Hames of Spartanburg, Mrs. O. B. Hames of Drayton, Mrs. George Lemaster and Miss Lucy Mabry of Spartanburg; her step mother, Mrs. Alice Smith Holder of Spartanburg; one brother, John D. Holder of Startex; one sister, Mrs. Florence Humphries of Lyman; four half-sisters, Mrs. Charles Thompson and Mrs. Lucy Blanton of Glendale, Mrs. Ruby Snow of Inman and Miss Annie Holder of Spartanburg; nine grandchildren. 

Funeral services were held in the El Bethel Methodist Church where she was a member. Rev. J. G. Ferguson and Rev. R. O Webb officiated. Burial followed in the Sunset Memorial Gardens, Spartanburg, S. C. Nephews served as pallbearers.

John D. Holder was born in 1893 in Whitestone S.C., Spartanburg County. He died at the age of 65 at his home on Monday March 10, 1958 in Startex, S. C. following two years of declining health. Born deaf, he was educated at the S.C. School at Cedar Springs, S. C. He was the husband of Minnie Lee Rogers Holder who died at the age of 87 in August, 1981. He was a member of the Startex Methodist Church and the Men’s Bible Class at the time of his death. He had worked in a local bakery. Funeral services were held in the Startex Methodist Church where he had been a member. Revs. Rufus Rowe, Grady Forrester and L. A. Erwin, officiated. Interment was in Greenlawn Memorial Gardens in Spartanburg. S. C. Pallbearers were; Oliver Pearson, Ab. Willingham, Sam and Miller Freeman, Eli Wright and Austin Barber. with the Men’s Bible Class forming the honorary escort. 

 He was survived by his wife; one daughter, Mrs. Ruth Ann Pearson; one son, SSgt Gary Holder, U.S. Air Force; also his step mother, Mrs. Alice Smith Holder, Inman, S. C; one sister, Mrs. Florence Humphries of Lyman; four step sisters, Miss Annie Holder, Washington, D. C., Mrs. Ruby Snow, Inman, S.C., Mrs. Bonnie Thompson and Mrs. Lucy Blanton, Glendale, S. C; two grandchildren. 

Florence Holder Humphries died at the age of 68, Wednesday May 7, 1958 in the Spartanburg General Hospital. She was the wife of E O. Humphries who died at the age of 75 in December, 1960. She lived at 31 Groce Road, Lyman, S.C. She was a member of the First Baptist Church of Lyman and the Tel S. S Class. Funeral services were held at the First Baptist Church of Lyman. Revs. R. Von King, J. O. Gillian, Cullen Crook and A.H. Wilson officiating. Interment followed in the Wood Memorial Park. Pallbearers were; Russell and Robert Littlejohn, C. W. Howard, Kyle Whitmire, Howard Traghtry and Leroy Blackman.

She was survived by her husband of the home and her step mother, Mrs. Alice Holder of Glendale; two daughters, Mrs. Cleo Alexander of Lyman, Mrs. Clarice Blair of Greenwood; four sons. Winifred E. and Hudson Humphries of Lyman, Robert and Gary Humphries of Spartanburg; four half sisters. Mrs. Lucy Blanton and Mrs. Bonnie Thompson, Glendale, Mrs. Ruby Snow, Inman and Miss Annie Holder, Washington, D. C; ten grandchildren and six great grand-children .

Work Certificate for Bonnie Holder at Age 14

Bonnie Holder Thompson, a native of Whitestone, S.C., Spartanburg County, was born in 1902 and started working in Glendale Mills as a teenager where she worked most of her working years. The law required teenagers to have work permits in that day. Bonnie lived most of her life and reared her children in the Glendale area and was a faithful member of the Glendale Methodist Church. 

Bonnie died at the age of 89 on December 11, 1991 in Pinewood Manor Nursing Home. She was the widow of Charles Albert Thompson who had died at the age of 78 in February, 1980. Her funeral was held in the M. W. Bobo Funeral Chapel in Spartanburg on Saturday December 14, 1991. Revs. Michael Henderson, Timothy Hottel, officiating. Interment followed in the Glendale Community Cemetery. 

 Survivors included two daughters, Gladys Thompson Gold Elliot and Evelyn Thompson Price; One son, Neal Thompson, all of Spartanburg, S. C.; Three sisters, Annie Mae Holder and Ruby Holder Johnson of Spartanburg, Lucy Holder Blanton of Glendale; Six grandchildren and four great grand-children. 

 Mrs. Lucy Holder Blanton was born in Glendale, S. C., Spartanburg County in the year of 1906 and died at age of 87 July 10, 1993 in the Spartanburg Regional Medical Center. She was the widow of Joe L. Blanton who had died at the age of 77 in February, 1987. She had lived in Glendale and worked in Glendale Mills all of her life. She was a faithful member of the Glendale Methodist Church, The Church Circle and The Glendale Women’s Club. 

Funeral services were held at Floyd’s Greenlawn Chapel with interment following in the Glendale Community Cemetery. Rev. Boyce Franklin Brooks, officiating. Survivors included two sisters, Annie Mae Holder of Spartanburg and Ruby Johnson of Clayton, Ga; A number of nieces and nephews. 

 Ruby Holder Johnson was born in Glendale, Spartanburg County in `1912 and died April 20, 1994 in the Ridgecrest Hospital, Clayton, Ga. She was the widow of Farest Johnson who had died at the age of 86 in July, 1989. She was a member of the Bethel Methodist Church, Spartanburg, the Bethelship Class and Circle 9. She was past Worthy Matron of the Easter Star in Washington, D. C. and was retired from Riggs National Bank, Washington, D. C. 

Graveside services were held in the Greenlawn Memorial Gardens, Spartanburg, S. C. on April 23, 1994 with interment following in the Greenlawn Memorial Gardens. Survivors were one son, Alfred L. Aiken, Riverdale, Md.; one daughter, Joanne A. Gravely, Walhalla; one step son, Tom Johnson, Pasadena, Md.; one sister, Annie Mae Holder, Spartanburg, S.C.; seven grandchildren and nine great grand-children. 

Miss. Annie Mae Holder was born in Whitestone S.C., Spartanburg County in 1904 and died at the age of 98 on Friday May 10, 2002 at her home in Spartanburg, S. C. A long time resident of Glendale, she worked at Glendale Mills and was a member of the Glendale Methodist Church, being active in it’s ministry and community activities for a number of years before moving to Washington, D. C. A graduate of Cecil’s Business College, she retired in 1966 from the U.S. State Department as a program officer for the Education and Cultural Exchange Department. She was a member of the National Secretary’s Association, the Business and Professional Women’s Club and the Bethel United Methodist Church, Spartanburg, S. C. where she was a member of the Bethelship Sunday School Class. 

Memorial services were held at Floyd’s Greenlawn Chapel on May 12, 2002 with Rev. Daniel A. Morrison Jr. and Dr. Charles Graves officiating. She was the last surviving member of her immediate family but was survived by a number of nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews.  The Holders, most of whom this writer had the privilege of knowing, were a prominent, well respected and loved family of the Glendale community. 

The following photos are of various members of the Holder family.

My appreciation to Mr. and Mrs. Jimmy Pearson and Mr. Thomas and Mrs. Gold, great grandchildren of Robert Gary Holder for pictures and information helping to pull this story together. 

References; U.S. Census and Spartanburg Herald and Journal obituaries, copies of which I got through the Spartanburg Library Micro film department.

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