A ROME PIONEER
AGED 79 YEARS IS DEAD
J.B. Flemming, Oldest Merchant in Rome, Found Dead in Bed.
"Very early Friday morning, Mr. James B. Flemming, one of Rome's oldest citizens, passed to death in his sleep.
|James Benjamin Flemming|
Mr. Flemming left his shop Thursday evening after a full day's work and went to bed at his home on Eighth avenue that night, with no indication of being in other than his usual health. In the morning he was found, lying in his usual position, with no sign of suffering, his life having gone forth in entire peace and quietness. He had very lately expressed the hope that such might be the manner of his death.
Mr. Flemming was seventy-nine years old, having been born in October, 1828. He had lived in Rome continuously for nearly fifty years, and had carried on a harness and saddlery business during practically the whole of that time. No other business in the city, probably, has been carried off without interruption for so long a time in one place.
In 1850 Mr. Flemming first came to Rome, but after a short time left and returned in 1858. Since that time he has been constantly resident here, except during the time of the war, during the whole of which he served bravely in the ranks of the army.
Mr. Flemming leaves four children, who are Mrs. R. B. Blake and Mr. Tom Flemming of Rome, Charlie Flemming of Birmingham and Oscar Flemming, who now lives in Talladega.
In the death of this aged and respected citizen, Rome loses one of those who have made and sustained her reputation and prosperity. Mr. Flemming was undemonstrative and quiet, but a man who with never failing industry performed his part and more in the work of building up his town and aiding his fellows. His character was strong and manly, and his word could be relied on to the uttermost. His many friends will regret to miss his familiar figure and will sympathize with his children in the loss of a kind parent, a faithful citizen and a good man.
Funeral services will be held this afternoon at the First Baptist church at two o'clock. The following gentlemen will act as pallbearers, and are requested to meet at the Banks Furniture Company at 1:20 pm: W. M. Neal, M. W. Brett, James Douglas, M.C. Kay, J. F. Hillyer, R. T. Fouche, Moody Andrews, T. C. Callahan."Several "facts" in this article are questionable. The newspaper says his birthday was October 1828, while his headstone says October 1827, making him actually 80 years old. The paper goes on to state that James was in Rome in 1850, but we know that his first son was born in South Carolina in 1854. It then states by 1858 he was settled in Rome, but according to the 1860 U.S. Census, the family of James & Sarah Flemming were in Cassville, Georgia at that time. [see "Hometown Tuesday - Cassville, Georgia" post, 7/5/11, for more information]