Monday, April 1, 2013

The Death of Mrs. J.W. Moran, 1895

Sophia Riley Gunn Moran
Most likely painted after her death. 
This is the obituary that appeared in the Dresden Enterprise.  Another tribute appeared later written by Mary D. Duval of Clarksville TN.  It was published in the paper October 25, 1895.

Death of Mrs. J.W. Moran
Dresden Enterprise
October 11, 1895

  Last Monday afternoon, just before five o'clock, after an illness of eight weeks from malarial fever and brain trouble,  Mrs. J.W. Moran breathed her last, surrounded by her family and other relatives and many friends, who had come from far and near to see the last of one who had been so inexpressibly dear to them in life.  Among the throng gathered about her dying bed was her brother Mr. Lyman C. GUNN, of St. Louis, the last surviving member of a large family.  Dr. WRIGHT, of Huntingdon, was called to see her Saturday, but death had placed his seal upon her, and medical aid was powerless to release her from his grasp.  All that love and money could do was done to save her, but no power was strong enough to restore her to life and health.

  Mrs. Moran, who was formerly Miss Sophia R. GUNN, was born in Nashville in 1852, and was educated principally in Leavenworth, Kansas, where, as here, she had many close friends.  Her education was quite thorough, and especially in music, she taking up the latter as her avocation.  In 1870 she came here a stranger to all, and commenced a class in music which she taught up to the time of her marriage with Mr. Moran a year later, this event, which linked two loving hearts and congenial lives as one, occurring at the home of Col. Jno. A. GARDNER, of Gardner Station, whose wife was a relative of Mrs. Moran.
First paragraph of the obituary
that appeared in the Dresden Enterprise

  Soon after coming to Dresden Rev. B.F. BLACKMAN held a revival which resulted in the conversion of many, and the addition of forty to the church, many of them young people, some of the quite old.  The deceased was one of the additions to the church at that time, and ever after was a consistent member and conscientious Christian.  Her work in the church bore much good fruit, and it will sadly miss her aid and influence.  she was for a long time the competent organist of this church, and her voice has been greatly missed from the choir during the past two years.

  It is seldom we find a wife and mother who so happily combines the many estimable qualities that Mrs. Moran possessed.  While she was for years known and felt in every public work, her home life remained a model system of perfection.  Although for a number of years her life companion was not a Christian, at least not by confession, (though always a man of the strictest moral living), yet from the first she erected the family alter, and every night her little children, ere they could hardly lisp the name of Jesus, were prayed for and with by her.  Her children, each giving promise of a career of usefulness and influence in the religious world.  Mrs. Moran was ever an industrious woman, and though she always had wealth at her command, she never ate the bread of idleness, but was ever employed in some way, at times teaching classes in music after her marriage.  Her home has been open to many for entertainment, and all can testify to the perfect system that was plainly visible in her home, showing that as a housekeeper she lacked nothing as to qualifications.

   Tuesday afternoon her remains were carried to the church where the funeral service was held by Rev. A.J. MEADERS, pastor of the church.  In the congregation were many from distant cities and surrounding towns--in fact the largest crowd that ever attended a funeral was out the, thug giving visible evidence of the high esteem in which she was held.  The casket, which was borne by the following pallbearers, Messrs. J.E. JONES, Dennis BRASFIELD, Will TUGWELL, S.P. SCOTT, all of Dresden, G.W. MARTIN, of Martin, and W.B. WASHINGTON, of Nashville, was literally covered with handsome floral offerings from friends. The music, with Mrs. W.W. BROWN at the organ, was very appropriate, being furnished by Mr. Arch TRAWICK, of Nashville, and Mr. WRIGHT, of Huntingdon, and Mrs. AYRES, of Box Station, assisted by the church choir.  A solo by Mrs. AYRES, "Only Remembered by What I Have Done," a favorite song of the deceased, was sung.  After the services closed the remains were taken to the Moran burying ground, north of Dresden, for interment.

  We all will miss Mrs. Moran from society and the church, and when the hand of charity is needed, for to the poor she was ever a responsive friend.  She is gone from among us, as have so many others during the present year, but let us hope that her good deeds may live after her and find fruit in the relatives and friends who are left to mourn her loss. To the broken-hearted and lonely companion we know how to extend a deep sympathy.  The greatest sorrow that can come into the life of man has been his.  With the children, who are grieving for a loving mother we can also sympathize, for we, too, have suffered the same loss; to the brother left so bereft of kin our heart can also go out in condolence, and for one and all we ask the richest benedictions from a kind, heavenly Father, whose will it has been to take their cherished one.  We say farewell to Mrs. Moran, but in that other life we know we will meet her where others have gone before, and that there all will be peace, love, and joy without separation.

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