Oct. 31, 1846-July 31, 1927
|The subject of this sketch, Eliza Martha Robinett, was born October 31, 1846, near Cheneyville, Rapides Parish, La. She was one of twelve children, all of whom lived to maturity. Five of her brothers served in the Civil War, and all of these died from the effects of army service. Her father’s plantation home was frequently visited by Methodist preachers, and doubtless her life was deeply affected by the influence of the men of God who enjoyed the courteous hospitality of her childhood home.
On November 18. 1868, she was happily married to Rev. Henry 0. White, of the Louisiana Conference, at her father’s home in St. Landry Parish, the ceremony being performed by her husband’ s elder brother, Rev. B. F. White, who also had been her teacher. To this union were born eleven children, seven of whom lived to mature age. Of these the youngest, Howard Octavus, died in a camp hospital in Lemans, France, December 17, 1918. Referring to this heavy blow, and the like fate of her five brothers, she often spoke of how war had desolated her home.
She passed away peacefully on July ~31, 1927, at her home near Ruston, La., after a brief illness. On the Sunday before her going, she was surrounded by her five daughters, her son and son-in-law, six of her seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. She was not suffering, and the day seemed a happy one to her. During this last illness, she received the constant, loving care and tender ministries of her children, and the physician who attended her, a nephew, Dr. Stewart L. White, left nothing undone that might relieve her sufferings. For more than forty years she discharged successfully the duties of an itinerant preacher’ s wife; a position of great difficulties, responsibilities and sacrifices, but at the same time offering rare opportunities of helpful service. She bore the burdens and discharged the duties of this position with unfailing fidelity and patience, a true companion and helper of her husband. Such quiet and often unnoticed service as she rendered in this capacity will surely receive its equal share in the reward of her husband’s services in the kingdom. Her chief sphere of service was in the home, where she relieved the strain of her husband’ s burdens, and reared her large family to usefulness in the church and society. The finest tribute to her faithfulness and success in this high sphere is to be found in the faith and Christian character of her children.
She is survived by one son—Henry W. White, of Shreveport; and five daughters— Mrs. Leola Nixon, of Ruston; Misses Nettie, Daisy and Marilena White, of Ruston, and Mrs. I. A. Hearn, of Columbia, all of whom are active and useful members of the Methodist Church. To the very end of her life she was cheerful and mentally alert, u great reader, enjoying especially the church papers and deeply interested in the success and progress of the church, which she loved, and to which she had given her life. She loved to participate by such contributions as her means made possible in the causes fostered by the church, and sent in her offerings toward each special cause without waiting to be called upon. Besides her own children, several orphan children were, at different times, inmates of her home. In fact, her whole life was spent in service to others. In the days of her increasing feebleness, when unable to take her place in the public worship, she always welcomed the visits of her pastor, and enjoyed the season of prayer in the family circle. She looked cheerfully and with confidence toward the unknown future, with its blessed hope. Amid the sorrowing circle of her family, and surrounded by a company of sympathizing friends, her body was laid to rest in the Ruston cemetery, after an appropriate service conducted by Revs. N. E. Joyner and R. W. Vaughan. Her immortal spirit has gone to’ join her sainted husband and children in the place which her Lord had gone to prepare for her.
W. Winans Drake
|Source: Annual of the Louisiana Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, Pages 102-103, 1927|