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The Salem Daily News, Salem, OH, August 8, 1889, Page 2 Col 3


An Aged Traveler - A Man 113 Years Old Journeying Alone from Arkansas to Kentucky


James McMILLIN, of Bardwell, Ky., says a Cairo (Ill.) letter to the St. Louis Globe Democrat, spent a few hours in this city recently en route home alone from Arkansas, where he was visiting relatives.  Mr. McMILLIN enjoys the distinction of being the oldest man known in this section of the country and probably in the United States.  He was born in Botetourt County, Va., of which Fincastle is the county seat, in the historic year of 1776, and succeeded to his father’s name without the change of an initial letter of alteration of orthography.  His mother’s maiden name was Diana CHITWOOD.  His father died at 97 and his mother at 106 from natural causes.


When seventeen years of age, “Uncle Jimmie,” as he is known to his friends, became one of a colony who, under those two noted Virginians, Peyton RANDOLPH and Stephen RANDALL, started west “to grow up with the country.”  They settled in what is now East Tennessee.  Subsequently, he with his faithful wife emigrated to Nashville, Tenn., and engaged in merchandising, serving two terms as sheriff.  Later he located at the delta of Yazoo Pass, on the Mississippi, where he became an extensive planter, residing there 53 years.  In 1881 he came to Bardwell, Ky., where he now lives.  He has been twice married and is a widower now, was the father of twenty-three children, two of whom are living, and they are accounted quite aged.  He is fond of tobacco which he chews but is opposed to liquor in any shape, and claims not to have drank a drop in 85 years.  As a souvenir he exhibits a copper coin of the date of 1776, which he has carried since he was 12 years old.  He is in possession of documentary evidence with reference to his birth that places beyond doubt his claim to be 113 years of age.  His fund of anecdotes is large, and his tales of eighty and ninety years ago are interesting and amusing.  He is quite strong of limb, mental faculties clear, and travels alone.