Interview with Judith Gilliam Cobb

We started by looking at pictures and discussing them:

Name of the boat was the Edvina.  Her grandfather was the owner and captain and he hauled produce to Norfolk from the Packett Wharf.  He also had oyster grounds as well.

Starts off by talking about the old Gilliam home.

She showed me pictures which I have scanned in and can be used in the book.

The picture of Parker Howell wife (old pinner house).  There was a school in that home and the picture shows who went there.  Mr. Gilliam, Godwins, and Pinners.

7:30-13:00  Talks about Perry and Raymond, her sons.

14:00  All three girls were born right in the Gilliam home.  Judith was born in 1918 (91 now). Grandmother was living next door while the other grandparents lived up in the mountains of Virginia.  Mr Gilliam did not like to travel, thus only one trip into the mountains each year.

She is not sure, but thinks her grandfather was born in the Carrollton area.  Her grandmother’s parents lived in the mountains.

Mr. Gilliam passed away in 1965.  There was only one house between the Gilliam home and the Church and that was Jasper Cotton’s.  Then my house was built and then Stells (Livesey) and W.G.’s.     Mr. Gilliam worked in a store in the area of where the old store is now.  However, he built a new one and that is the one that is there now and was ultimately Barbee Gilliam’s store.  The original store was one story.  After selling the store he went to work for the Highway Department.  Might have worked for Lone Star for awhile.

Mr. Gilliam enjoyed fishing and when he retired he did a lot of that.  Mr. Christopher and Miss Ames boarded with them when Judith was a senior.

Talked about the small bathroom and how the teachers made out.

Talked about living with my mom when they were in beauty school.  They lived on Olney Road.

She had to lock her suitcase because the other boarders would go into her case and take out the goodies Mrs. Gilliam had given her.

Judith worked in Norfolk, got married and went to work for telephone company.  Married Howard Cobb when she was 19.  Had almost 69 years together.  He died 4 years ago (2006).

Moved into the house on the hill in 1960 but tore down the old Stalling’s home and built one out of brick in 1964.  Lived there until 1989 then moved into a Constance Woods condo for 13 years then into Lake Prince in 2002.

34:00 talked about Howard and his health.

38:00  Talks about roller skating to the bridge and her learning to “Locker Write”

40:00  Talks about taking Latin instead of home economics.

41:00 to 81:00  No Historical data just family discussions.

Dad was born 0ct 13, 1891

Mom born May 7, 1892

They have a lot of family buried in St. John’s cemetery.

Mr. and Mrs. Jones ran a post office in the Gwaltney store early on.

Talks about the old stores and how you bought items by bulk.

86:45  Talked about people who would come into the store that Mr. Gilliam ran during the depression and he would just put their products on a tab, but many did not pay.  He could not make a living out of it so he closed the store.  He then went to work for the state.  Judith talks about the apple trees in their back yard and how they made apple sauce.  How Mrs. Gilliam and Aunt Rosa would can items that he brought in.

Judith talks about Miss Patty being a fixture in Chuckatuck.

Mr. and Mrs. Gilliam were married in 1916.  Mrs. Gilliam was from Shotwell, Virginia in Madison County.

She has a picture of Paul Brady who was one of her boyfriends.

Talks about what Howard did when they were married.  They were living in Norfolk.  First he worked for a Loan Company, then the government, but ended up with house to house selling of furniture, or items for the house primarily in the negro neighborhoods..  From a Saturday only  work day he grew to over 25 employees and a full time employees and ultimately sold it.

103:00  Before they were married Howard ask Mr. Gilliam if he would like to go to the mountains.  Although a homebody Mr. and Mrs Gilliam along with Howard and Judith headed for the mountains.

105:00  Talks about Grandmother Gilliam and Aunt Bitisi.   Aunt Bitisi died in 1936 and was married twice.

Talks about Aunt Bitisi and Grandmother walking to church and Grandmother would tell Aunt Bitisi that her petticoat was showing.  Aunt Bitisi would say “Aw Shucks”.