Remembering a Village Family – Milton and Cora West – Part 2

“History is the essence of innumerable biographies.”

Thomas Carlyle

Scan 65

 An excerpt from the letter Mr. Hyman Battle wrote to Milton West on the occasion of his retirement from The Rocky Mount Mills

…He doesn’t recall the names of all the mills he worked in between 1910 and 1916, but he worked in Charlotte, Raleigh, and Fayetteville before coming to Rocky Mount in 1916. This came about when his sister wrote and told him our mill needed experienced help. He says he had no trouble in getting a job – he even recalls his first day at work when he ran 4 “old timey” drawing frames which had no guards. Mr. West says only good sense kept you from getting hurt. Mr. West doesn’t remember getting hurt.

…On April 7, 1917 he married Miss Cora Register who had come to Rocky Mount from Duplin County to work in the mill.

…Mr. West has the honor of having received the highest award ever given by Rocky Mount Mills for a suggestion. In 1948 he was awarded over $200 for his suggestion about running the Waste Mill. He likes his job, he likes Rocky Mount Mills and in his words, “I consider it an honor to have worked for Rocky Mount Mills 35 years.”

…”Mr West, Rocky Mount Mills considers it an honor to have had you with us for 35 years. So with a great deal of pride, I present Milton Dupree West for his 35 year Special Award.     Hyman Battle

Stepheny with a note: This is the first in what I hope will be a series of stories about families who lived in the Mill Village. If you have a story you are willing to share, PLEASE, leave me a comment below and I will contact you. Let’s honor the past together. 

3 thoughts on “Remembering a Village Family – Milton and Cora West – Part 2

    1. Thanks Hilarie: Glad you liked the post on this Mill Village family. Wonderful comments left on Rocky Mount Way Back When were I posted the link to this blog. A lot of interest which is exciting. I’ll be writing more as I can track down these stories. A delightful task.


  1. TO ALL OF YOU WHO HAVE WRITTEN COMMENTS SO FAR on the Rocky Mount ‘Way Back When’ Facebook page….I hope you have been getting to know me through this blog I began writing in July called Main Street Rocky Mount. I’m delighted to published the first of the Mill Village Family posts that I intend to write. (Milton & Cora West.) If you knew me better you would be saying to yourselves, “there goes Stepheny again, dabbing at her eyes, crying a bit over all we have written here in response to her writing.” I am running around in my mind hugging all of you for writing these fantastic comments. I mean, when did you have so much fun! I will be in touch with all of you hoping you will be a part of honoring the past with these wonderful stories about your families & friends. With your help, I think we can do this! There are others who are interested in the history of the Village, and it is my prayer to organize this in such a way that those who are interested can collaborate so it all makes some sense. For the moment let me just say that in a world that is in disarray, the loss of values, the politically correct approach to what we once held so dear, the story of these seemingly ordinary people you have mentioned is like a pearl of great price, precious. Don’t you agree? Let’s not loose these stories that can help us emulate all the hard work, pride in home and family, our religious underpinnings, that your family and friends taught us. Thank you for sharing these memories with all of us and connecting dots. We are all grateful. You have my word I will do my best to write for you and for the Mill Village families of yesterday a great story one at a time. Are you all in?


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