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Dec 11, 2016

Lightfoot, Alexander, Obituary, 24 Sep 1891, Raleigh, NC

Lightfoot Alexander Raleigh NC 1891


Alexander Lightfoot was born in Raleigh about the year 1819, and belonged to the late Col. James Taylor, of that city.

In January, 1845, he was married in the Methodist church to Myra, a daughter of the late Moses Patterson, well known in Raleigh. The marriage being upon the eve of the removal of the late Gen. Patterson, to whom his wife belonged he was hired by Gen. Patterson from his then mistress, Mrs. Eliza Taylor, and came with him to his farm on the Yadkin river, in Caldwell county, where he ever after resided.

On the evening of September 8th, 1891, a thrill of horror was felt throughout the community as the tidings were rapidly spread that “Uncle Aleck,” as he was known to all, had been drawn upon the mill saw while bearing away a piece of lumber, and dreadfully and fatally wounded. The most serious wound was in the right chest, cutting the ribs and tearing the lung. Willing hands bore him to his house, where his wounds were skillfully dressed. All that constant medical care and lender, loving hands could do, was done for him, and after the first few days it seemed indeed as if there was a chance of his recovery, but blood poisoning supervened, he began sinking, and on Sunday morning, the 20th, he peacefully passed to his rest.

The death of Alexander Lightfoot removes a landmark well known in his neighborhood, and breaks a link binding the present with the past. In his long life he had built up and maintained a character for honesty, truthfulness, benevolence, fidelity to every trust, and Christian zeal, which few men attain to. So great was Gen. Patterson’s confidence in him that he was frequently entrusted with large sums of money to and from the bank. During the dark and trying days of the war, and the worse ones succeeding, he was always faithful and true.

His influence with his people was great and exerted in behalf of morality and order. He was a carpenter by trade, and there remains many a monument to his skill and fidelity. It is safe to say that he did, for the poor of the neighborhood, especially of his own race, hundreds of dollars worth of work for which he received no remuneration. For more than forty years he was a member of the church, converted under the preaching of the Rev. Mr. Edwards in Raleigh. After the war he joined the A. M. E. Church, and was its chief support in his neighborhood. He was mainly instrumental in building the church very near his house, and from which he was buried. Rev. Elder Barham, who conducted the burial services, paid a just tribute to his worth and good works to the large congregation present composed both of white and colored.

He leaves a wife, three sons and four daughters, one of the latter being Mrs. Dunston, of Raleigh, and another the wife of Rev. J.R. Bryan, of Texas, both of whom nursed their father most tenderly during his last illness. This sketch is the tribute of one who knew him well, and who mourns his death as a personal bereavement, a bereavement intensified and rendered the more poignant because the fatal accident occurred while in his service.
A Friend.

Source Citation

The gazette. (Raleigh, N.C.), October 24, 1891, Image 3. Image and text provided by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library, Chapel Hill, NC. Persistent link: .