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Rev Brantley York
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Birth: Jan. 5, 1805
Randolph County
North Carolina, USA
Death: Oct. 7, 1891
Forest City
Rutherford County
North Carolina, USA

Brantley York was a son of Eli York and his wife Susannah Harden, who lived on Brush Creek, Randolph County, NC.. He was the seventh of nine children, born in the midst of a snowstorm. His grandfather, Henry York, had come to the United States from Yorkshire, England. His father was a miner and distiller, with uncertain employment, and the children had to go out to work at an early age, and didn't have much of a chance for a formal education. Brantley, however, had a strong desire to learn and read greatly, assisted by the Library Society of the Ebenezer Church. At a camp meeting at Ebenezer in 1823, he came to Christ, and decided to become a minister. He began teaching and preaching in the Spring of 1832, and was licensed to preach in 1833.

In 1838, Rev. York had difficulties with regard to the Methodist Conference, and was teaching in Randolph County. Some of the local Methodists and Quakers got together to form a school for their children, and Rev. York helped to organize, found, and run, the newly created Union Institute Academy. The name was chosen as the endeavor represented the union of the local Methodists and Quakers. Rev. York ran the school for several years; and, while his efforts met with great success, it was during this time his eyesight began to fail. He not only had to deal with the administrative issues and the raising of funds, but often worked late into the night studying to prepare for the lectures he was to give. Union Institute was later called the Normal College, and later Trinity College. It was moved from Randolph County to Durham, NC in the 1890s, and was subsequently renamed Duke University in the 1920s.... It all began with Rev. York and a group of Methodists and Quakers in rural Randolph County.

Despite the fact that his eyesight continued to fail, and he went completely blind by the time he was 48 in 1853, Rev. York went on to found many more schools. He started the Clemmonsville High School in Davidson County in 1842, the Olin High School in Iredell County in 1851, York Collegiate Institute in Alexander County in 1856, Ruffin-Badger Institute in Chatham County in 1869, and the New Salem and Randleman High School in his native Randolph County in 1881. From 1873 to 1877, he served as a professor at Rutherford College.

Rev. York also published a number of text books. He published "York's English Grammar" in 1854, "Common School Grammar" in 1860, "High School Grammar" in 1873, and "The Man of Business and Railroad Calculator," in 1873. This last was a book of arithmetic and legal forms. He also continued to preach, and toured about the countryside, preaching and teaching and presenting lectures all over NC, SC, Virginia and as far as Arkansas. At one point, he estimated that he had preached or lectured over 8,000 times and had taught more than 15,000 students.

Brantley York married Frances "Fannie" Sherwood (7 March 1809-14 Jan. 1834) on 31 Jan. 1828, and they had two children: Rachel Layton York (19 April 1830-24 Dec. 1887, Mrs. Thomas Franklin Elliott) and an infant son who did not live. Brantley married Mary Wells Lineberry (10 June 1819-18 May 1910) on 13 Nov. 1836, and they had eleven children: Fannie Sherwood York (1837-1871, never married), Major Richard Watson York (1839-1893, 6th NC Regiment, CSA, m. Louisa Ferrar Foushee), Susan Jane York (1841-1922, m. Capt. John E. Rheim, lived at Butte, Montana), Mary Lucreta York (c. 1844/5-1868?), Wesley Clegg York (1846-1912, m. Caroline Isabella Sharpe), William Brantley York (1849-1918, m. Mary Elizabeth Fowler, was a teacher, lawyer and farmer), Dr. Nelson Durant York (1851-1926, m. Ludelia Emma "Lou" Herndon, Mebane, NC), Senora R. "Nora" York (1854-1912, m. Dr. William J. Clontz), Rev. Bascom Alfred York (1858-1959, m. Euphasia Smith Moring), and Rev. Davidson Victor York (1863-1937, m. Zula Catherine Hayes). There was also an Amos W. York, but I don't know where he fits in the list.

Rev. York died at Forest City, Rutherord County, NC, in October, 1891, and was buried at the Rocky Springs Methodist Church in Alexander County, near the York Collegiate Institute which he founded in 1856. His students raised the funds for an impressive monument.

The autobiography of Brantley York can be found on line at:
Family links: 
  Eli York (1771 - 1853)
  Susanah Harden York (1774 - 1846)
  Frances Sherwood York (1809 - 1834)
  Mary Wells Lineberry York (1819 - 1910)
  Infant Son York*
  Rachel Layton York Elliott (1830 - 1887)*
  Frances Sherwood York (1837 - 1871)*
  Richard Watson York (1839 - 1893)*
  Susan Jane York Rheim (1841 - 1921)*
  Wesley Clegg York (1846 - 1912)*
  William Brantley York (1849 - 1918)*
  Nelson Durant York (1851 - 1926)*
  Senora P. York Clontz (1854 - 1912)*
  Bascom Alfred Yorke (1858 - 1959)*
  Mary Polly York Coltrane (1792 - 1878)*
  Harden York (1794 - 1837)*
  Hannah York Bond (1799 - 1884)*
  Brantley York (1805 - 1891)
  Jemima M. York Mendenhall (1810 - 1873)*
*Calculated relationship
Rocky Springs United Methodist Church Cemetery
Alexander County
North Carolina, USA
Created by: John Field Pankow
Record added: Jun 17, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 53813047
Rev Brantley York
Added by: John Field Pankow
Rev Brantley York
Added by: John Field Pankow
Rev Brantley York
Added by: Digger
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