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 James Bascom “Jim” Rose, Sr

James Bascom “Jim” Rose, Sr

Athens, Limestone County, Alabama, USA
Death 26 Apr 1963 (aged 76)
Athens, Limestone County, Alabama, USA
Burial Athens, Limestone County, Alabama, USA
Memorial ID 17076768 · View Source
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My Grandfather - James Bascom (Jim) Rose, Sr - was the 13th of 14 surviving chidren of a total of 17 children born to Elmira Almeda and her husband Samuel Adam Burney Rose and brother to Thomas Weatherford Rose and Truda Belle (Rose) Thompson. He was only 6 years old when his Mother Elmira died. He would be cared for by his older siblings, especially Martha Rebecca "Aunt Mattie" Rose(affectionaly called Aunt Mat) who was only a few years older. Aunt Mattie would never marry, probably partly because of the responsibity of taking care of her younger siblings.

In 1908 he would marry Flora Vianna Casteel, daughter of Abraham Bud Casteel and Nancy Jane (Goode) Casteel. They would have 8 children, 6 who would survive on into adulthood and beyond, 5 being girls and the youngest a boy. He would become known as Papa to them and their children. They are in order from oldest.
(1) Winnie Odell born 1909 and dying in 1914. The cause of death was listed as osteomyilitis.
(2) Glayds Ophelia(Sis) born 1911. (3)A twin boy was also delivered but died at birth.
(4) Mamie "Ora Lee" born 1913.
(5) Jane Elmira(Ellie) born 1915.
(6) Mildred Marie(Mil) born 1918 - still very much with us.
(7) "Alma" Belle born 1920.
(8) James Bascom, Jr(J. B., my father) born 1922.
Click on view all images to see a picture of each of them as a young adult or teenager.

Papa would be a jack of many trades during his life. He would have a blacksmith shop, shoeing horses and mules, making and sharpening plows, replacing metal rims on wagons. He would be a farmer raising cotton and corn and keeping livestock, poultry, and pigs. He grew a very large variety of watermelon whose seed was brought in from some other state, I believe Texas. The skin was dark green and thin and the meat was a dark red and very sweet. I have seen them get over 50 pounds in weight. I remember helping carry them from the field as a boy and having to stop and rest several times. Papa would also be a law officer of the surrounding community, raiding stills and arresting the drunk and disorderly. He would also be what I remember most, a fisherman, putting out and running trot lines and using a seine, a huge net, when it was legal but only when it was legal. He was a very religious person, belonging to the Church of Christ. There were no gray areas in his beliefs. Something was right or it was wrong.

Papa died in 1963. It would be the first loss of a close relative that I would experience and remember well. Grandmother Flora had died in 1950 at age 64 of a stroke when I was only about four. Papa had been living with each of his children for periods of time and died in his sleep at Aunt Ora Lee's home. He had a bad heart and it finally gave out. I remember how hard the impact of his death was on his daughters and on my older brother Mike, who had spent more time with him growing up then any of the rest of his grandchildren, almost to the point where Mike seemed more like a cousin than a brother at times. Mike had joined the Air Force and came home on leave for his funeral. I remember that Mike was so despondant and preoccupied over Papa that he carried a set of salt and pepper shakers that were a gift for our Mother around in his hand for a good while before he remembered that he was carring them. The funeral was very large and was held in Mt. Carmel, the church that Papa had attended for so long. Jim Rose was laid to rest beside Grandmother Flora in the Dement Cemetery.

------ a rememberance of Papa --------
------------ by Mike Rose -------------
School just let out and boy was it a nice day, the birds and the smell of honeysuckles engulfed the air. I always kept my Modped accross the road. It was one of those bicycles with a motor attached. I mounted the old bike and just zipped on past our house doing a top speed of thirty.

Clements High School lies only fourtteen miles out of Athens, going west on Hi 72. Papa's stately house, where daddy was born, materialized just ahead ove the hill, past Old Miss Poke Allen's place. There it was, columns porch and all, settled on its foundations after all those years. An old concrete well was dug in the back room past the kitchen, or was the room put there after the well?

I usually parked my bike in one of the back rooms. Papa lived alone and so didn't care much about tire marks. He wasn't home that day, the truck was gone, but he might as well have left a note. I knew where to look. I smiled knowingly as the bike took me further west toward the Elk River, an old green river that runs lazily into the Tennessee. I turned short of the river and down to the fish camp where a few of the fishermen moored their boats.
Papa liked the manager for they swapped stories and I guess a few exaggerations, and huddled their boats together for security. As it happened on arriving, I heard a boat whining just out of the hollow. In a few minutes it appeared and there he was, a proud big man in a little frame, about five feet four - stocky but shining and enduring as the river that ran its course endlessly. He didn't see me at first because of his deep thought, probably considering the day's catch. I just leaned there on his truck wondering how many times he had made that entrance - him and that old flat bottom wooden boat powered by an Evinrude motor. You see, I was his pick over all those other grandchildren and he knew I knew it. Somewhat like a silent understanding we had. We Roses never expressed affection too much because of pride mostly, I suppose. He liked to tell about his deputy sheriff days. On one occasion he actually shot the pistol from a guys hand. One could discern his tales were the truth for he had a way of relating incidents matter-of-factly. No one ever questioned his honesty, sincerity, or any other of his virtues. He was just that sort of person.

Life on the river in the summer bordered on rendering a person lazy, but winter proved harsh and the biting wind made me wonder with awe at his endurance. There wasn't enough clothes in the world to keep me confortable at times. I actually crawled under a tub once, but that proved very uncomfortable. Papa's hands were hard like cowhide with scars where catfish fins and hooks left their marks. He just sat back there running that boat like a statue pointing out places of interest - where his lines were and such. My primary job was keeping the boat off trotlines so he might run them. I would just grab a paddle and switch ends with Papa. Once the boat lurched and a hook dug deep in his hand. With no sound of pain he grabbed his pliers, shoved the hook on through, cut it off and pulled it out. That lurch proved to be a seventy pound catfish. Now thinking back, that fish meant about fifteen or twenty dollars, not much according to contemporary standards.

He never learned to drive that old truck too well. It's kinda funny, he seldom used second gear, just simply went from first to third, and only used second in the cotton fields, watermelon patches, and roads only half usable. Believe it or not, Ford people, second gear has a special use, not necessarily used in continuiy with first and third. Every Sunday and Wednesday night found him at church, setting up front honoring God. They never made him an elder because of some reason or another. He argued his views and read the word of God according to the King James version of the Bible.

He died in the year 1963, that day catching about sixty pounds of fish with a black man in our area. They say Papa was really happy that day, but death came as a thief in the night. I remember him there in the Greyhound bus station, still proud. Dad and Mom were there too. Mom embraced me and Papa did too, for the first and last time in our lives, to my rememberance. You see, that was the last time I was to see him for the U.S. Air Force was to be my new home. Papa closed the old house down after I left and moved in with all his girls and Dad, rotating from house to house according to his pleasure.

When I'm home on leave, ever so often, I visit the river and - if I listen real good - that old motor still whines around the bend, and the river whispers little secrets of remembrance. As I stood there once, its rippling waves expressed a loneliness for his excellance, and I knew Papa's caliber was of another age lost to us all with only a grasping hurting recall. So we do remember you Papa. We all could learn much from your noble ways and hope that some of your character might be inherent within us, simple at first but complex in its entirety.

Much of the facts in this documentation of my Grandfather's life were researched and written by my first cousin Lynn Parham, son of Mildred (Rose) Parham, in a book entitled "An Alabama Rose Garden". For more Rose family pictures click here to visit Lynn's website.

  • Created by: Wayne Rose
  • Added: 18 Dec 2006
  • Find A Grave Memorial 17076768
  • Wayne Rose
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for James Bascom “Jim” Rose, Sr (14 Mar 1887–26 Apr 1963), Find A Grave Memorial no. 17076768, citing Dement Cemetery, Athens, Limestone County, Alabama, USA ; Maintained by Wayne Rose (contributor 46853093) .