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James Archer Sharp
Margaret (Peggy) Joyce
Jarrett Bolyn (Bouldin/Bolden) Garrett
Clarissa Walton Hill
James Marshall Sharp
Elizabeth (Eliza) Merritt Garrett

James Merritt Sharp


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Annie Britt Blackwell

James Merritt Sharp

  • Born: 26 Sep 1877, Huntsville Township, Rockingham Co., N.C.
  • Marriage: Annie Britt Blackwell on 3 Jul 1906 in Reidsville, N.C.
  • Died: 2 Aug 1952, Reidsville, Rockingham Co., North Carolina at age 74
  • Buried: Greenview Cemetery, Reidsville, Rockingham Co., N.C.

bullet   Cause of his death was uraemia.


bullet  General Notes:

See general notes on his father for 1900 census facts.

The 1910 Federal Census for Madison Township, Rockingham Co., N.C., District 158, page 130A, dated April 15, 1910 records James M. Sharp (33) with his wife Annie B. (26) and daughter Susie M. (2). James is a Lawyer in General Practice living on Murphy Street.

The 1920 Federal Census for Reidsville, Rockingham Co., N.C., District 217, page 150A records James M. Sharp (42) with his wife Annie B. (34) and children Susie M. (13), Sallie B. (9), Annie H. (5), Thomas A. (4 6/12), Louise W. (3 3/12), and Florence N. (9/12) living at 253 Lindsey Street. James is a General Practice Lawyer. It is interesting that Annie H. Sharp is listed as born in Virginia while all other family members and their parents are born in NC.

The 1930 Federal Census for Reidsville, Rockingham Co., N.C., District 21, page 178B records J. M. Sharpe (sic) (52) with his wife Annie (46) and children Susie (22), Sallie (18), Annie Hill (16), Thomas (14), Louise (12), Florence (10), and James V. (5) living at 255 Lindsey Street. James and Susie are listed as General Practice Lawyers. Susie will become Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court.

From a book on Rockingham Co., NC:
As a child James Merritt Sharp attended school in a one room, log schoolhouse. Determined as a teenager to broaden his education, he, on his own motion, attended Whitsett Institute in Whitsett, North Carolina with money he earned from raising tobacco. By the age of eighteen, he was teaching school.

In 1900, Mr. Sharp established Sharp Institute, a co-educational day and boarding school. In order to obtain a post office for the Institute, Mr. Sharp had to pick a name for the neighborhood, and did so, naming the community Intelligence, North Carolina. Opening in October of 1900 with 50 students, the enrollment climbed to 225 by 1906. Known by then as one of the best preparatory institutions in north central and northwest North Carolina, the school burned in 1907, ending J. M. Sharp's career as "Professor Sharp" as he was affectionately known by institute alumni.

Even before the fire, J. M. Sharp was reading law. The fire's end to a career of teaching led to a career in the law as he passed the Supreme Court's Bar examination in 1908 after studying under the famous Wake Forest Law School Dean, N. Y. Gulley. He began his 44-year practice of the law in Stoneville, North Carolina, moving to Madison in 1910. Four years later, in 1914, he moved his practice to Reidsville, North Carolina where he remained for the next 38 years, continuously practicing law, serving his community, and rearing his family. During his years in Reidsville, he built a reputation as a tenacious trial lawyer who as his last law partner, Norwood Robinson, said "never had a guilty client". Constantly active in the political and social life of his community, he served in the North Carolina State Senate in 1925 and 1927, representing the 17th Senatorial District. He was county attorney for the county of Rockingham and served a number of successive terms as President of Reidsville's Chamber of Commerce and the Rockingham County Farm Bureau.

While in Vance County recruiting students for his Institute, Professor Sharp stayed with the family of a faculty member. There he met the faculty member's sister [Mattie Sue Webb Blackwell, soon to be wife of another faculty memebr, Albert Earle Garrett], Annie Britt Blackwell (March 4, 1884 - April 9, 1971), the daughter of John Pomfret Blackwell and Sally Wortham Blackwell. She also was hired as a teacher at Sharp's Institute and in 1906, J. M. Sharp and this gracious, steadfast and learned lady of faith were married.

bullet  Medical Notes:

uraemia US, uremia
(Medicine / Pathology) Pathol the accumulation of waste products, normally excreted in the urine, in the blood: causes severe headaches, vomiting, etc. Also called azotaemia

North Carolina Death Certificates, 1909-1975 <>
Name: James Meppitt [Merrit] Sharp
Gender: Male
Race: White
Age: 74
Birth Date: 26 Sep 1877
Birth Place: Rock, North Carolina
Death Date: 2 Aug 1952
Death Location: Reidsville, Rockingham
Father's Name: James H Sharp
Mother's Name: Eliza Garrett
Residence: Reidsville, Rockingham, North Carolina


bullet  Noted events in his life were:

Occupation: Teacher (1900) / Lawyer.


James married Annie Britt Blackwell, daughter of John Pomphrette W. Blackwell Jr. and Sallie Green Wortham, on 3 Jul 1906 in Reidsville, N.C. (Annie Britt Blackwell was born on 4 Mar 1884 in Townsville, Vance Co., NC,1 died on 9 Apr 1971 in Reidsville, NC and was buried in Greenview Cemetery, Reidsville, Rockingham Co., N.C..) The cause of her death was Ventricular Fibrillation / Coronary Atherosclerosis.

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