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07/23/2015

Melton Family Donates Johnson Family Bible to Pettus Archives

Quick Facts

 The leather-bound Bible is small, about 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches and is about 2 inches thick.
 There is handwriting in the back listing D.B. Johnson’s birth date and the death date of his father, D.B. Johnson Sr.

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ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA – Winthrop University’s Louise Pettus Archives and Special Collections recently accepted the donation of a Bible believed to have belonged to Margaret Johnson Nance, the mother of founding President D.B. Johnson.

The leather-bound Bible is small, about 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches and is about 2 inches thick. Some of the pages are missing in the front. And the velvet finish cover is well-worn.

There is handwriting in the back listing D.B. Johnson’s birthdate and the death date of his father, D.B. Johnson Sr. Several poems and newspaper clippings also were found in the Bible as well, said Gina White ’83 of Winthrop’s Louise Pettus Archives.

Delivering the Bible to the archives were Garnet Melton and his brother, Fred Melton ‘75. Their brother, Ray Melton, helped tear down an abandoned house about 50 years ago in Columbia, South Carolina, for Daniel Construction Company to make way for a manufacturing plant. Ray Melton said he found the Bible in an upstairs closet in the house.

The Rock Hill resident said he came across the Bible and showed it to a friend, who realized the connection to Winthrop. The Meltons decided to donate the holy book earlier this year to the university.

Archivist White said the Bible will be added to the Johnson family papers and will be available for viewing.

For more information, contact Judy Longshaw, news and media services, at longshawj@winthrop.edu or call at 803/323-2404.

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