McCaleb Coffey

McCaleb Coffey

Death 17 Feb 1881 (aged 77)
Burial Patterson, Caldwell County, North Carolina, USA
Memorial ID 20253282 · View Source
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"McCaleb Coffey, as youngest child, was born (near what is now Patterson, NC) August 22, 1803. Before him were William (the father of Gilliam, Wilborn, Daniel. and Calvin Coffey, and Celia Curtis now or late of this county), Reuben, Martha (wife of Rev. James Dowell),Lewis, and Larkin, who migrated to the West about fifty years ago, Elijah, who went farther South about the same time, and Sarah, who married Samuel Stewart, of Burke County, North Carolina. (NOTE: This would make his mom about 51 and dad about 63 when born. Not likely but perhaps possible.)

McCaleb, soon after his majority, on February 5, 1828, married Elizabeth Collett, a sister of John Collett, Esq., of Burke, and Abraham Collett, of Cherokee County and settled in what was then known as the upper dark hollow of the Yadkin River, where he kindled the cheerful light of a home, since widely known as well for the thrift and hospitality of its inmates as for the noble brood of sons and daughters reared and trained under its shelter. Here sixteen children were born to him, of whom thirteen are known: John C Coffey(d-young), Thomas Jefferson(b1828) and William Columbus(b1839), Charles Lewis(b1830),and Henry Clay Coffey(b12/31/1841)and six daughters: Laura Coffey(d-young),Sarah Amelia(b1831), Mary Louisa(b1836), Margaret E(b1837), Martha E(b1840), Francis Caroline(b1839) and Rachel Minerva Coffey(b1850). Preceding him in death was James F Coffey(bca1843).

Without seeking to praise the living, it is but justice to the dead to say that children so taught by precept or example as these have been are the best gifts a citizen can bestow upon the State. To their prudence, energy, and uprightness their several counties owe much, and their immediate neighborhoods very much of their prosperity and reputation. McCaleb Coffey was one of the last and best specimens of an almost extinct class of men. He was a hunter, pioneer, and backwoods farmer. Never long absent from the place where he first laid his hearthstone, commencing life with scanty means, he was able by steady work and just dealing to erect a slightly and commodious mansion, to raise a large family and equip them for active life, and to accumulate a sufficient fortune for the support of his old age.

While never seeking public position, be was once induced by the united voices of his fellow citizens to act as chairman of the first Board of our County Commissioners, and made a faithful and painstaking officer.

He died February 17, 1881, at his home about a mile above Patterson on the left side of 321 north bound, and was buried February 19, at Harper's Chapel, within sight of the roof tree under which he was born. Without ambition, save to live uprightly and do what he found to be his duties at home, of rare prudence in speech and action, never busied in the affairs of others, inflexibly just, yet not uncharitable, this plain farmer's long life was so useful, clean, and pure that as he was followed to his grave by three generations of his descendants and a large concourse of his neighbors. After more than three-fourths of a century spent under the shadow of the same hills that towered over his birthplace, there was not one in all the throng who pressed near the coffin for a last look at the well-known gray head but who could say, "a good man is gone."

From: Thomas Coffey and His Descendants, pgs. 95-96


McCaleb Coffey
Aug. 22 1803
Feb 17 1881
77 yr. 5 mo. 25 da.


In their memory
Plant Memorial Trees


  • Maintained by: J Deans
  • Originally Created by: Janet Amtower
  • Added: 3 Jul 2007
  • Find a Grave Memorial 20253282
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for McCaleb Coffey (22 Aug 1803–17 Feb 1881), Find a Grave Memorial no. 20253282, citing Harper's Chapel United Methodist Church Cemetery , Patterson, Caldwell County, North Carolina, USA ; Maintained by J Deans (contributor 47247988) .