2017-07-19 / Front Page

Mrs. Banks wrote about Little Cowan for 31 years


Mrs. Elsie Banks in her earlier years. Mrs. Elsie Banks in her earlier years. Funeral services were held Tuesday for long-time Mountain Eagle community correspondent Elsie Caudill Banks of Cowan.

Mrs. Banks wrote a weekly column in the newspaper for 31 years. She was 102 years old at her death. She came from a line of long-lived people. A brother, Cassel, lived to 103. Her grandfather, Isham Caudill, was born when George Washington was president of the United States.

In 1989, at the State Convention of the Kentucky Society, Daughters of the American Revolution, the organization recognized Mrs. Banks and her cousin, Venessa Adams Davis, as third generation descendants of Revolutionary War patriot and long hunter James Caudill. The DAR at that time knew of only one other person of that generation in the state, and she was not healthy enough to attend.

Mrs. Banks was graduated from Whitesburg High School in 1934 and attended Morehead State University for one year, 1934-35. She taught at Kingdom Come, Big Cowan, Pert Creek, and Thomas School on Little Cowan. While teaching, she attended summer classes at Pikeville College.

She began writing a column in The Mountain Eagle about the coming and goings of people on Little Cowan in 1973. CAP magazine quoted her in 1986 about why she wrote the column.

“It was good to hear from our friends when they moved away. I guess we thought we would always live close together,” she said.

She was the oldest member of the Little Cowan Primitive Baptist Church, a member of The Order of the Eastern Star and the Pine Mountain Chapter of the DAR.

She was the widow of Bert C. Banks, to whom she was married for 62 years. She was a daughter of Hiram Sampson Caudill and Annie Ethel Vermillion Fleenor Caudill, and a sister of the late Gladys Marie Pitts, Lou Annie Banks, John Patton Fleenor, Charley Vermillion Caudill, Cassel Robert Caudill, Walter Edison Caudill, and Burnice Lovel Caudill.

She is survived by her son Carl Bennett Banks and her daughter-in-law Marsha Kincer Banks.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be made to Little Cowan Primitive Baptist Church, 735 Highway 2035, Whitesburg, Kentucky, 41858.

Funeral services were held at the church. Burial was in the Caudill Cemetery at Cowan.

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