By Vivian Clark Wainwright

Charlton County Herald

April 21, 1999

It was a tired, little five-year-old girl that set eyes for the first time on her new home of Folkston, Georgia in the year 1914. Lillian Davis had traveled all night on a train with her family, leaving the familiar red clay roads of her hometown, Pine Mountain, Ga. to settle in the little town of Folkston, which had been officially incorporated nineteen years before.

The sandy roads were a strange sight and they quickly discovered how easily one bogged down in the deep soft sand. Her older brothers, Gaston and Frank, would have had a hand in paving the first highway through the town eight years later. The Dixie Highway brought with it a prosperous tourist trade for the town whose commerce centered around the railroad and timber industry.

Mrs. Lillian attended Charlton County schools, including a one-room schoolhouse in which her mother taught in the Camp Pinckney area. At that time the family lived in the old John Vickery place and they attended the Camp Pinckney Church. Later, moving uptown, she attended school in the two story structure which fronts on Third Street (across from Folkston United Methodist Church) and they joined the congregation of the First Baptist Church.

Her parents were M.G. Davis, Sr. and Lena Cornelia Harris Davis. There were seven in the Davis family. Winnie (Huling), Gaston, Frank, M.G. Jr., Lillian (Allen), Buck and Sarah (Buie). She married Lawrence Mallard Allen on March 14, 1947. He passed away on October 17, 1976.

Mrs. Lillian remembers her first job was at Mrs. Bank’s restaurant. She worked in the post office for several years and with Miss Marward Bedell at the courthouse during rationing in the midst of World War II. For many years she worked for two companies, at different times, the Passieu’s Gas Company (Folkston Gas) and Southern Gas Company.

Her only child, Larry, was born on September 13, 1948. He went to his first football game, which just happened to be the very first football game in Charlton County, at the age of five weeks. And he’s loved the game ever since. He is married to the former Susan DeLoach and they have two sons, Vince and Monty.

Mrs. Lillian has witnessed all the changes that have come to pass in the last 85 years. She loves the community which she became a part of at the age of five and continues to stay involved. She is an avid Charlton County Indian fan and is a familiar face at the ball games. This is the first year she hasn’t attended all the ball games, but she and her friends at Charlton Court apartments enjoyed many from the sidelines.

She loves going to church and she and her friends which includes my mother, enjoy visiting other church’s revivals and gospel sings. She checks on her neighbors, especially when they aren’t feeling well and it is her love and concern that draws others to this very special lady. Her faith and belief in prayer are very strong as well.

“I was blessed to have been born into a Christian home,” said Mrs. Lillian. Get-togethers with her large extended family are always enjoyable. I was surprised to learn that Mrs. Lillian was almost 90 because she drives all around town and stays so active. “I’ve always loved everybody and kids were my heart,” she said. “I’ve always liked the things the young people liked, such as ball games.” And maybe that’s what has kept her young, being “young at heart.”

Mrs. Lillian shares some of her favorite recipes with us this week. The Sweet Potato Soufflé originates from Alice Chancey. The Banana Nut Bread is one from her sister in law, the late Mary Stokes Davis. Her nephew, Lewis Davis, likes the Steamed Carrots recipe and Sarah’s Pound Cake is a specialty of her sister, Sarah Buie.

My thanks to Mrs. Lillian, a very special lady to me and my family. Happy 90th Birthday! We’re looking forward to a wonderful celebration at your Community Birthday Party.

[Four recipes followed.]

[A picture of Mrs. Lillian Davis Allen was included with this article, along with the following cut line: A beautiful Christian lady, dearly loved by countless friends and family members, is being honored by her many nieces and nephews with a Community Birthday Party at the Old Restored Train Depot on Sunday, May 2, 1999 from 3:00 – 5:00. Lillian Davis Allen will celebrate her 90th birthday on May 3, 1999.]

Charlton  County Archives