HISTORY OF PASCO COUNTY
John Marion O’Berry and Mary Frances Jones
This page is taken, with permission, from the former My Blanton web site, created by Marinell Davis.
Notes: The Masonic apron is presented as part of the initiation ceremony. It is frequently of white cloth, or felt, but the old usage would require that the apron be of white lambskin. The white apron is an emblem of innocence “more ancient than the Golden Fleece or the Roman Eagle,” … the apron was worn by Entered Apprentices at the building of Solomon’s Temple.
Mrs. O’Berry Was Buried Monday
Many Attend Services in Honor of Pasco’s Oldest Woman Resident
This article appeared in the Dade City Banner on Tuesday, Aug. 8, 1927.
Mrs. Mary F. O’Berry, wife of John M. O’Berry, reputed to be the oldest woman resident of Pasco County, died at her home in Blanton Saturday afternoon from Senility. Mrs. O’Berry had just finished eating dinner and was sitting by her husband on the edge of the bed when she suddenly fell over against him as the Grim Reaper passed through. Funeral services were held in the little Methodist church of Blanton which was crowded to the doors, many being unable to secure entrance Monday morning. Masses of beautiful flowers testified to the love and honor in which all held this pioneer woman. The services were conducted by Rev. J. M. Mitchell of Elfers, himself pioneer citizen and lifelong friend of the deceased. Interment was in historic Mt. Zion Cemetery in Ft. Dade where her remains were laid to rest in the family plot beside those of her family who had gone before. The arrangements were in charge of Mortician Edgar Rawls, Coleman and Ferguson Company.
Mrs. O’Berry was born in the Ft. Dade section west of the present site of Dade City, in October, 1849. She was the daughter of Rev. M.E. and Emily Jones. In 1867 she was married to John M. O’Berry who survives her. They made their home in Blanton where for over forty years they lived in one of its most pretentious homes leaving it only about a year or so ago when they built a smaller home nearby. Nine children were born to this union, of whom eight are now living.
Mrs. O’Berry was a typical pioneer Florida woman, kind and given to hospitality, hard working, careful, yet generous and full of charity. She was a life and consistent worker of the Methodist church, and her entire life was a living exemplification of her religious profession. She was also a member of the Eastern Star.
Besides her husband, Mrs. O’Berry is survived by four daughters, Mrs. A.S. Thompson, Tampa, Mrs. M.C. Gainey, Bradenton, Mrs. Robert Ansley and Mrs. Fannie Haycock of Blanton. Four sons, W.J. O’Berry, Jacksonville, B.B. O’Berry, Columbus, Georgia, J.L. O’Berry, Tampa, and S. T. O’ Berry of Blackshear, Georgia.
Pallbearers were C. E. Dowling, C. J. Burnside, E. S. Blocker, Robert Ansley, C. . Hines, and O. B. Paige. Music was furnished by a quartette of Dade City ladies, Meadames: I.W. Smith, J. McKeithen, W.E. Douglas, and Harry Tipton.
Veteran Goes to Great Reunion
Funeral Services For J.M. O’Berry To Be Held At Blanton Church This Morning
This article appeared in the Dade City Banner on Aug. 16, 1927.
John M. O’Berry, Confederate veteran and pioneer resident of Pasco County, passed away at his home in Blanton on Sunday morning, just eight days after the death of his wife. Mr. O’Berry was sitting on the front porch of his home resting after breakfast when the summons came; his head dropped forward on his shoulders, and without a struggle he passed to the great beyond.
Funeral services will be held at 10 this morning at the Blanton church, the Rev. J.M. Mitchell of Elfers officiating. Interment will be in historic Mount Zion cemetery, and he will be laid to rest by his Brothers of the great Masonic Fraternity, of which he was a life long member.
Mr. O’Berry was born in Pierce County, Georgia between 84 or 85 years ago. At the beginning of the War Between the States he enlisted in the Confederate Army, serving honorably throughout the entire struggle. Shortly after the surrender he moved to Florida and located in Blanton living up to a short time ago when he sold it, on the same farm and in the same house where he first made his home. In 1867 he married Miss Mary F. Jones of Pasco who passed away just eight days before he received the great summons.
Mr. O’Berry was a member of the Methodist church and a Mason. He was a farmer by occupation, and a man noted for his kindness and neighborly spirit.
His passing is mourned by four daughters: Mrs. M.C. Gainey, Bradenton, Mrs. A.S. Thompson, Tampa, Mrs. Robert Ansley, and Fannie Haecock of Blanton. Four sons: W.J. O’Berry, Jacksonville, F.B. O’Berry, Columbus, Georgia, J.L. O’Berry, Tampa, S.H. O’Berry, Dade City, and one brother, Tom O’Berry, of Blackshear, Georgia.