Historic Bramwell Pioneer

DR. HEDLEY V. McNEER

Research on Dr. Hedley V. McNeer revealed that he is buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, located behind the Riverside Baptist Church (formerly known as the Bluestone Baptist Church) in Freeman, WV. Dr. McNeer was only 40 years old when he died in 1903. Dr. McNeer's house is the oldest house in the town of Bramwell. On January 30, 1899 he sold the house to his daughter ** for $1.00. She sold it to Dr. Tanner on July 3, 1920. Dr. Tanner sold it to Dr. Little on Nov 15, 1924. Dr. Little sold it to William Joe Miller's Grandmother Bess on March 9, 1946. (Information in this paragraph from Joe Miller of Bramwell. Joe now lives in the Historic McNeer House.)

Dr. McNeer was born in 1863 in Monroe County. He attended public schools in that county and obtained higher education at Lebanon, Ohio Normal School. He was a graduate of the University of Virginia Medical School. He enrolled for additional study at Bellevue Medical College in New York, graduating with such distinction that he was retained by the faculty as one of the staff for the next two years. He became associated with Bramwell's first physician, Dr. McGuffin in the Flat-Top Field in 1887 and his medical practice and with Dr. J. B. Kirk. Dr. McNeer was married in 1892 to Nannie M. Gaver. (Information extracted from Martha Jane Williams Becker's Book..."Bramwell, The Diary of s Millionaire Coal Town.")

Futher research also verifies that Dr. H. V. McNeer's wife was Nannie M. Gaver McNeer (May 8,1867 - April 20, 1929). Nannie was born in Rockingham County, Virginia.She is buried in the Green Hills Cemetery, Stephens City, Frederick County, VA under her maiden name, Nannie M. Gaver. They were married on Nov. 17, 1892 in Hedgesville, Berkeley, West Virgnia. Nannie's father, H.A. Garver conducted the marriage ceremony. H.A. Garver's wife was N.H. Gaver. Some of this information is from the Virginia Cemetery Project that features a photograph of Mrs. Nannie Garver McNeer's Tombstone..on the project's internet site..

** Research indicates that Dr. McNeer's daughter may have been Bessie McNeer O'Neal (Nov.24, 1893 to Mar. 25, 1954) wife of S. D. O'Neal. She is also buried in the Green Hills Cemetery, Stephens City, Frederick County, VA.

Dr. Mcneer's Parents: Richard Tucker McNeer (1825 - 1891) Amanda J. Pence McNeer (1830 - 1879)

IIvanhoe Metal and research provided by: William A. Petty.

Grave Site Photograph By: Ken Bowen

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.VIEW BRAMWELL'S HISTORIC MCNEER HOUSE

BRAMWELL'S OLDEST HOUSE: According to relialble present sources the H.V. McNeer house is the oldest home in Bramwell.  He bought it from the Bluestone Land Corp in 1889 for $1400.00, when lots were only selling for $300.00.  The McGuffin home was not built in 1885 as previously reported. The center lot was not accuired until November 1887 for $300.00.  It is doubted that the home was completed until 1890. The written source is the mercer county court records. Thus, these recently noted court records show that the Historic Dr. R.M. McGuffin House was incorrectly reported to be the oldest frame house in Bramwell. Some less reliable writings have reported it to be the oldest house on Bramwell.s Main Street. This house boasted the first indoor plumbing in town and had a free standing shower. It even had a windmill to help supply water, and there was a speaking tube from the front door to the bedroom.

A newspaper Article: April 17, 1908 - Dr. R.M. MCGUFFIN, a prominent physician of Bramwell, and the coal fields, was seriously injured last Sunday by Dudley WILLIAMS, at Glen Alum, in West Virginia. WILLIAMS struck Dr. McGUFFIN on the head with a pistol, inflicting a wound which was thought to be fatal. He is now in Welch hospital. The trouble is said to have occurred on account of a letter written to some young ladies of Mr. Williams household. Williams was fined and released by the magistrate.

Note: During the late 1800s Dr. R. M. McGuffin was a surgeon for the N&W Railroad Co. He was born in 1847 and died in 1910.

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