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Mary Jewell Pridgen Donnelly
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Birth: Sep. 19, 1903
Death: Dec. 19, 1983

Jewel was the third of three children born to Dr. James Edward Pridgen and his wife, Josie McManus. She was the only one of the three to grow to adulthood.

Jewell's father, known affectionately as Dr. Ed, was a beloved "country" doctor who delivered a large percentage of the babies born in rural south DeWitt and Victoria Counties during his years in practice. He was known for his knowledge and treatment of pneumonia which ran rampant in those days and for his great diagnostic ability.

Dr. Ed was often called out of town to diagnose difficult cases. He was known for his extreme kindness and generosity.

Jewell grew up in a loving family in Thomaston, Texas just north of Victoria. While she was an only child growing in in her family, she was surrounded by first cousins, maternal grandparents, aunts and uncles, and many friends who lived in or near Thomaston.

In the Saturday, 12 Mar 1927 issue of "The Brooklyn Daily Eagle," New York, the following announcement of Jewell's and Hugh's marriage appeared.


Miss Jewell Pridgen and Hugh J. Donnelly of Flushing, L.I., were married at the home of Mr. and Mrs. J. M. Young of Malba, L.I. at 9 o'clock Thursday evening. Miss Pridgen is the daughter of Dr. J. E. Pridgen of Thomaston, Tex., and has been attending Columbia University during the past year.

Mr. Donnelly is a lieutenant with the Naval Reserve Forces and served during the war with the Overseas Convoy Forces.

Dr. Thomas H. MacKenzie of the Dutch Reformed Church, Flushing, performed the ceremony, after which a supper was served. Mr. and Mrs. Donnelly then left for Atlantic City for a two weeks' stay."

In a phone conversation on 14 Jan 2013 with Dr. James Edward Pridgen, Jewell's first cousin (their father's were brothers), Dr. Pridgen reflected on his memories of Jewell. He said she lived with his family during her high school years [1919-1921] in Cuero [about 11 miles northwest of Jewell's family's home in Thomaston]. He was born in 1918, so he doesn't remember her much from that period. But, from interactions with her in later years, he remembered her as a "wonderful person, smart, optimistic, helpful, outgoing and popular." He said Jewell had two corneal transplants later in life and was nearly blind the last few years of her life.

Jewell returned to her home to visit in Thomaston while any of her family members still lived there. On the back of an Aug 1939 photo from her collection, which she gave to Dr. Pridgen and is now with his son, James Edward "Jimmy" Pridgen, Jr., Jewell described the photo of the old home of John Robert Wright and Mary Ann McManus Wright (Jewell's mother's sister) thusly: "Thomaston scenes, east of R.R. track; J. R. Wright residence, where Papa lived after Mama's death, my Thomaston headquarters also when I was in Texas until 1951 when my aunt died (Mrs. J. R. Wright, my mother's sister)."

Special thanks to contributor Burgess Donnelly (# 101717373) for finding and sending the 12 Mar 1927 news article about Jewell's and Hugh's marriage.

And, special thanks to Dr. Pridgen and to his son, Jimmy, for sharing the information about Jewell and her family and some of the photos from Jewell's collection.
Family links: 
  James Edward Pridgen (1872 - 1934)
  Josephine Charlotte McManus Pridgen (1873 - 1924)
  Hugh John Donnelly (1890 - 1964)*
  Infant Daughter Pridgen (1900 - 1900)*
  James Edward Pridgen (1902 - 1902)*
  Mary Jewell Pridgen Donnelly (1903 - 1983)
*Calculated relationship

X 3492
SEP 19 1903
Dec 19 1983
Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery
San Antonio
Bexar County
Texas, USA
Plot: Section X Site 3492
Maintained by: Bob Webb
Originally Created by: US Veterans Affairs Offi...
Record added: Feb 25, 2000
Find A Grave Memorial# 591459
Mary Jewell <i>Pridgen</i> Donnelly
Added by: Bob Webb
Mary Jewell <i>Pridgen</i> Donnelly
Added by: Bob Webb
Mary Jewell <i>Pridgen</i> Donnelly
Added by: LKat
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- LKat
 Added: Jan. 5, 2013

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