Died, on Saturday last, at Oakland, where
he has resided for so many years, Samuel Cootes, in the 90th
year of his age.
Mr. Cootes’ life has been closely
associated with the history of Rockingham county. Engaged for years
actively in the mercantile business, his acquaintance with the people was
necessarily extensive, and he was popular among all classes of his
customers as a trader and neighbor. His vigorous mind and energetic habits
brought him at an early period of his residence in the county into
conspicuous notice. He was a Magistrate of the old regime, and was
associated on the Bench with Dr. Harrison, Lewis, Gratan, Yancey, Bear,
Spears, Coffman and men of that stamp, whose services to the county will
long be gratefully appreciated by the citizens who are old enough to
remember their official career. Mrs. Cootes was a staunch and zealous
Democrat,--having brought his political opinions with him from old Berks
county Pennsylvania, which was his birth place--and as such was elected to
the Legislature of Virginia from Rockingham, where he served his county
with honor and fidelity. Mr. Cootes immigrated to Virginia about the
period of the last war with England, and marched with the Virginia forces
to Craney Island to confront the enemy, after which his life was cheerful
spent in Rockingham. He was twice married; first to Miss Emily Graham of
Harrisonburg, then to Miss Pauline Neff, whom he survived 18 years. He had
two sons, Dr. J. G. Cootes, who now resides at Oakland, and Frank Cootes,
who died about a year ago in Staunton, and who was so justly popular among
the merchants of Baltimore as a salesman and reliable business man. His
daughters, we believe, are all dead, but he has numerous representatives
in his grandchldren.
Mr. Cootes was noted for his genial social
tastes, and there are many alive still who will remember passages of wit
and humor which abounded at his board, as he dispensed a generous
hospitality, and related with gleeful mood the incidents of his boyhood
days, when the sturdy citizens of Old Berks turned out to fairs or engaged
in the excitement of political affairs.
Nearly 100 years old, he turned his face to
death in firm reliance on the teachings of Christianity and the blessings
of an immortality conferred on all the just.
The funeral services were conducted at the
Presbyterian church in Harrisonburg, by Rev. J. R. Bowman assisted Rev.
Published in the Rockingham Register, March