The Potts family hosted its annual reunion Aug. 17 at the camp on Salem Ridge. The facility is owned by the family of the late James Potts, youngest son of Sidney Potts, who was the youngest son of John Nathaniel and Lucy Jane Duncan Potts.
John Nathaniel, David Ezra and Benjamin Potts were among the early settlers coming from Virginia, through Pocahontas County to Upshur County. Nathaniel stayed in Upshur County, married Lucy Jane Duncan and built their home at Kanawha Run where they spent the rest of their lives. They raised a family of eight children, Ida Francis Potts Johnson, Clemmer Potts, Lilly Potts Gould, Mary Maude Potts McClain, Cora Potts Scott, Oscar Hugh (Dave) Potts, Sanford Roy Potts and Sydney James Potts, all of whom and most of their children, are now deceased.
Their descendants remain proud of their heritage. Jessie Potts Sanders Marsh, only daughter of Sanford and Pearl Eskew Potts, has written a 250-page book on the Potts genealogy. She began her research on the family history while spending five years with her second husband, Ben Marsh, in Pottstown, Pa.
REUNION —Those attending the Potts family reunion include, from left, seated on ground, Ashley Hack, Bobby Smith, Greg Newhart, David Boyles, Jimmie Potts, Nathaniel Bailey, Sydney Hoover and Casey Hoover; second row, Freddie Smith, Mary Potts Smith, Shawn Potts Farrell, Berdine Lewis Potts, Jimmie Potts holding Katlyn Potts, Jessie Potts Sanders Marsh, RoseMary Potts holding Padraig Seamus Farrell, and Deloris Potts Boyles; third row, Kathy Jo Goff, Betty Potts, Phyllis Smith Newhart, Paula Smith Carpenter, Paula Music holding Gracie Andrews, Carol Post Adams and Joan Spriggs; back row,, Jennie Potts, Derek Davidson, Eric Potts, Michelle Boyles Davidson, Lois Casto, Scott Casto, Ernie Smith, Donna Hack Smith, Allen Reynolds, Jennifer Carpenter Potts, Tina Carpenter Moore, Willie Potts, Sarah Sanders, Brandon Bailey, Michelle Sanders Bailey, Mike Sanders, Stanley Boyles and Gary Potts.
Through that research, she found that members of the Potts family had left Germany in the 17th century, settling first in England but after several other moves, some arrived in the port of New York, founding the town of Pottstown. The ones who arrived in the port at Philadelphia first founded Germantown, Pa. Future generations moved further west where John Potts founded Pottstown. Further research proved that the three brothers previously mentioned were descendants of John Potts.
In addition to Marsh, only two other grandchildren of John Nathaniel and Lucy Jane are still living. They are Aleta McClain Wilson, 98, who lives in a rest care home in Wheeling. She is the daughter of Mary Maude Potts and Ernest McClain. Her husband, Henry Wilson, founded the McClain Publishing Co. in Parsons, still in operation by a member of the family. Vorris Scott, 98, the son of Cora and William Scott, lives in Walkersville. He and his wife, Madalene, still maintain their own home situated on a few acres of their once large farm.
David Ezra became a doctor and practiced in Lewis County where he married and raised a family. Three of his descendants, Jack Snyder, living in Ohio, Carol Post Adams, living in Texas, and Joan Spriggs Post, living in Maryland, are also interested in their Potts heritage and often attend the reunion. Benjamin Potts also settled in Lewis County, married and raised a family but the family has yet to contact any of his descendants.