Public Wells Community
see photo section below

Public Wells Community includes Public Well Church & Cemetery.
 There has been a little confusion about whether it is Public Wells or Public Well.

Public Wells - Well from Pat Shepherd

There were 3 hills in a triangle . On one was John Calvin McGehee's old farm west of the church that he bought from Gardner in 1864. On the next hill and adjoining is my grandfather Daddy Joes - to the north I think . Then there is hill with the church on it and their well is at bottom of hill down from church.. Each hill above had a well from underground springs. The one at the church was a cistern that came to be known as the Public Well. On our farm,  later owned by George Mcgehee, nephew of my grandaddy. Joe is the one that filled up and put the ornamental cover on it to mark it. That spring and creek ran along 3 sides of our farm.I have lots of pictures of the old farm back when it was ours.  Next to my grandads farm was  Rev John A.Miles and Jinny who was Virginia Drummond. They were cousins and best friends of my grandparents. Cousin Jinny delivered my mom. 

Uncle Arthur McGehee was a minister and lived next to Uncle Jim(James) McGehee .Uncle Arthurs farm was first owned by Ellis's.Uncle Jim's son was George who bought our farm during depression. Next to Johnnie and Jinniy Miles was the Travanthans. 

There were 3 wells as I explained. Both the other 2 owned by My family and the one at the Church. Now originally all three were public in as much as John Calvin McGehee and also Daddy Joe allowed folks to come and use it to haul water for their cisterns. The one at the church built in 1852 was always public. When John died 1924 the person who bought his farm closed it to the public and when Daddy Joe lost the farm in the depression then George bought it and also closed that one to public. I am not sure when the iron sign at the church was put up, but the original name of the area was Public Wells and after later years was known as Public Well for the church well. Hope this clears up some of the controversy. 

PS Mom, 86 years old, says they called it Publc Wells and Well and it don't matter as it's all gone now anyway. Smile....Pat

The first people in that area was Gardners and Carlsons.  Archie Rowlett came there in 1847 and later in 1849 he went back for his sister a widow Saluda Milles wife of James who died in 1849 in Caswell Co NC.My gr-grandmother Mary Susan Miles was 8 months old when they made the trip to Public Wells which was then Pleasant Hill I think.They changed the name when the church got built I think. The Crutchfields, Adams and Ellis's and some others were there a little later but at about the same time......Pat Shepherd

Newspaper Article on 150th Anniversay of Church by Bob Smith - Lots of  Names here! History tidbits of the Black citizens within the community. 
 Newspaper Article - Homecoming May 1941

Photos of Public Wells Community
Pat's Collection of photos around the Public Wells area
Public Well/Wells Baptist Church - stormy april 2003
THE PUBLIC WELL that the Church opened up to the public during time of drought.
Public Well Cemetery 
Old photo with many early CHURCH FAMILIES - Missionary Baptist

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