|Birth: ||Jul. 9, 1912|
|Death: ||Mar. 20, 1990|
EMILY BURNEY TICHENOR MONROE'S PHILANTHROPIST
Through the years Monroe has been blessed with having citizens whose altruistic generosity provided greatly in helping preserve and protect our town. Of these "guardian angels", Emily Tichenor stands at the top of the list. Emily's unselfish generosity and philanthropy touched many lives in Monroe during her 77 years.
Emily Burney was born in Boston, Georgia on July 9, 1912, the daughter of John Glover Burney and Minnie Elizabeth Ingram. She came to Monroe to teach in the local school system. When she met her future husband, Henry McDaniel Tichenor, he was immediately struck by this quiet, almost shy brunette beauty. A courtship ensued and they were married in 1944. The couple resided in the McDaniel home place, built by Henry's grandfather, a former Georgia governor. The young couple quickly became an integral part of Monroe society, entertaining their friends and families at various functions at the ancestral home place. Emily Tichenor wasted no time in becoming involved with many of the town's civic endeavors, showing her interest and desire to make Monroe a town in which the citizens could be most proud.
After the death of her husband in 1965, Emily's interest in historic preservation fueled her desire to preserve the historic McDaniel home which culminated in its placement on the National Historic Register. Along similar lines of wanting to preserve documents of historic value, she teamed up with her friend, county historian Anita Butts Sams, and helped publish a collection of civil war letters of Gov. Henry D. McDaniel to his fiancé, Hester Felker, under the title of "With Unabated Trust". Other organizations that received the generosity of this petite lady were the Walton County Historical Society, The Monroe-Walton County Library and The Alcove. She gave of her time and resources to help organize an early Georgia organization for senior citizens. She was an early trustee for the Walton County General Charitable Foundation which was founded by Mr. Harry B. Launius.
Mrs. Tichenor made significant contributions to the First Baptist Church in honor of her husband and to the Boston Presbyterian Church in honor of her parents. Two Monroe social organizations of which she was a long time member were the Athenaeum Club and the Delphians. Her interest in higher education led her to serve on the Board of Visitors of Davidson College in North Carolina. She was a devoted member of the Ray Presbyterian Church where she served on the Board of Sessions.
Emily Tichenor was a practical pragmatic individual who had specific ideas and goals for not only her life but for other venues as well. When she learned of her cancer diagnosis, she set about to ensure that the home she had loved so well was to be entrusted to the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation and provided in her will a trust valued then at one million dollars be set up for the support and maintenance of the house and grounds. She left the house which had several rooms decorated by her close friend and nationally known interior decorator, Monroe native Michael Greer, the furniture, furnishings, silverware, porcelain, books, family portraits and other works of art to the Georgia Trust. The 7.21 acre tract of land which surrounded the house was given to the Trust as well. It was her wish that her home be opened to the public and used for various social functions, education tours, receptions and meetings. A board of local citizens would regulate the use of the house.
It was very important to Emily Tichenor that her last breaths be taken in her treasured home, surrounded by the things she loved. Her wish was fulfilled when, on Tuesday, March 20th 1990, her spirit joined her husband's and once again they were re-united. Her death generated sadness throughout Monroe and Walton County by those who knew and appreciated the philanthropist whose generosity touched so many lives in the area.
One of her good friends, the late attorney Bill Childers, who served with her on the boards of several local organizations, remembered his friend "as a very private person who made ‘enormous' contributions to the community, always working behind the scenes, never wanting to be in the spotlight. She had an abiding interest in the welfare of the community. It is not often you encounter a person that has all the qualities you admire. For me, Emily had all these and more. She was a very inquisitive with an exceptional sense of humor."
Another Monroe resident and close friend, Stephen Felker, whose family was closely connected to hers, paid tribute to her in saying: Emily was a strong, witty lady with a keen sense of what she wanted to do and a feeling of what was best for Monroe. We will not see her like again."
As with her life, Emily had the final word on how her funeral was to be held. Simple, yet impressive services for this extremely generous lady were held on Thursday, March 22, 1990 from the Ray Memorial Presbyterian Church, presided over by Rev. Patricia Snyder, Rev. Al Scogin and Dr. Ben Bishop.
One of Emily's friends commented after the service, "Monroe was so fortunate in Emily finding us worthy for her stewardship." What a wonderful epitaph to conclude a generous life of service
Henry McDaniel Tichenor (1900 - 1965)*
Rest Haven Cemetery
Maintained by: Terry Tichenor
Originally Created by: Evening Blues
Record added: Jul 26, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 15050560