From: History of Ritchie County, Minnie Kendall Lowther,1910.

Few individuals have had a longer or more important connection with the affairs of this town than the late lamented Creed Collins, who spent the entire span of his life in this vicinity.  He was the son of John and Phebe Bryce Collins, and on the old homestead not far from this town, he was born on December 14, 1842, and here at his beautiful "Oak Hall" on a quiet afternoon in the early spring time, April 23, 1909, the sun of his life sank behind the Western hills.

Though only a boy, he was an ardent advocate of the Southern cause, and at the opening of hostilities, leaving his studies at the Academy at Morgantown, he enlisted in Company A. Twenty-fifth Virginia Cavalry under Captain E. J. Jarvis and Colonel Kasler, who belonged to William L. Jackson's brigade, and was the youngest member of this company.  He was twice taken prisoner, spending five months at Camp Chase, and seven, at McLane's Barracks, but managed to escape from the latter place by tunneling his way through a cellar.  He was engaged in the mercantile business here for twenty-five years (beginning near the year 1867), and was at one time an extensive dealer in the tobacco industry; and at the time of his financial crisis, was regarded as the wealthiest man in the county, being one of the largest land-owners as well as having interests in paying business concerns.

And this crisis was due to no fault of mismanagement of his own, but came through his trustfulness of others, those who proved to be unworthy of the confidence that he bestowed, and he died of a broken-heart.  It has been said of him by those who knew him best, that he was "the soul of honor," that his nature was generous, noble and warm-hearted.  He was ever a loyal and influential Democrat.  He had no church ties, but his last intelligible words were an expression of peace and of resignation.  He lies at rest in the family burying-ground near "Oak Hall," and his widow and youngest daughter occupy the palatial old home.

In 1867, he was married to Miss Susan Haymond, daughter of Co. Lewis and Rachel Wilson Haymond, and granddaughter of Co. Ben Wilson, senior, and five daughters and three sons were the result of this union; viz., Mrs. Faye (J. K. B.) Wooddell, Mrs. Marion Greer, Mrs. Anita Smith, the late Mrs. Pansy Sprinkle, Miss Genevieve, Creed, junior, Staley Wilson, and Haymond Bryce Collins.

Minnie Lowther, History of Ritchie County, xiv, (Wheeling, WV: Wheeling New Litho. Co, 1911), 522-523
Transcribers are Janet Waite, Earl Cowan and Erin Stewart.


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