HISTORY OF LORMAN UNVEILED
SHOWING PROUD HERITAGE OF COMMUNITY
Many of the families now living in and near Lorman can trace their ancestry to
families who settled here during the pioneer era and later. Briefly mentioning a
few such family names as Watkins, McDonald, Martin, Farley, Hays, Killingsworth,
Brown, Ellis, Wade, Ross, Jones, Noland, Galtney, Broughton, Coleman, Miller,
Watson, Marble, Bolls, Millsaps, Edwards, and many others are not to be
forgotten. Where these families settled and helped to establish and build this
community. These names are a proud heritage.
The village of Lorman----formally known as Hays city----is built upon land which
was originally a part of the plantation owned by Mr. George Porterfield Farley.
Mr. Farley came to the United States from Scotland. His heir now residing in
Lorman are his granddaughter, Mrs. Lorman Hays Dunn and Mrs. Dunn’s daughter and
son, Mrs. Marie Storie (?), and Mr. Laforest Dunn. Mr. Farley’s plantation upon
which was erected his beautiful two story colonial home and where his four
daughters were reared extended from what is now known as Melton Station to the
South, and to the North as far as Clifton a distance of approximately five
miles. The lovely home was destroyed by fire many years ago. Miss Charlotte
Farley, one of Mr. and Mrs. George Porterfield Farley’s daughters married Dr.
Archer Hays during the Civil War. Dr. Hays came to Mississippi from Baltimore,
Maryland. Mrs. Lorman Hays Dunn is the only living member of their family of
three children. Mrs. Hays inherited that portion of her father’s plantation upon
which the village of Lorman was built. Her memory is cherished by many of our
generation who loved and respected her. It was she from whom the Y&MV railroad
secured the right-of- way through Hays City in or about the year 1884, and this
was the beginning of progress in this small community, where only a few
scattered families resided.
Until the railroad was built and there was a railroad station in Hays City all
merchandise was shipped by boat on the Mississippi River and had to be hauled
from Rodney Landing (about thirteen miles).
The name of the village was changed from Hays City to Mrs. Dunn’s given
name---Lorman—because of two liked named Post Offices in the state and the
confusion caused by the mail being misspent.
Mrs. Hays sold some of her property to the Cohn Brothers who had come to Rodney,
Miss. In 1872 from Alsace, France to secure positions. From Rodney they went to
Clifton where the mercantile firm name of Cohn Brothers was established. A few
years later they built a store on land which they had purchased from Mrs. Hays
and conducted business until their death. Mr. Helman Cohn (known as Henry in the
community) died in 1903 and Mr. Lehman Cohn died in 1914 and Dan, Sylvia and
Henry L. Cohn carried on and took a very active part in civic improvements.
To the West of Lorman and long before there was a village of Lorman, Mr. Anon
Killingsworth, Sr. owned one of the very large plantations upon which was built
a brick mansion. Like all of the other large plantations owners had owned many
slaves. He reared his grandsons, Mr. Scott K. Ellis and Mr. Smith Ellis in his
home. Mr. Scott Ellis’ widow, Mrs. Mamie Ellis and her son Iler Ellis and his
family reside in a part of the plantation originally owned by Mr. Killingsworth.
Mr. Killingsworth gave to the community the original site where the Cane Ridge
Methodist Church was erected. It was used as a school in the early days. The
church was demolished and moved to the village of Lorman in recent years. The
grounds upon which the church originally stood is still the Cane Ridge Cemetery,
where many of our beloved and revered citizens have been laid to rest.
The Fellowship Baptist Church was originally built on the Watkins place and was
torn down and moved to Lorman about the year 1914.
Another large plantation situated to the West of Lorman was owned by Mr. Wiley
McDonald. It is in the possession of the heirs of his family, Mrs. Julia
McDonald Hamilton, Mrs. Edith McDonald Carpenter and Mr. John Wiley McDonald.
They reside in the old family home which was built more than a hundred years
ago. A part of the McDonald plantation upon which was built a very pretty modern
home was inherited by Mrs. Hazel Harper Vaughn and her brother, Grantley B.
Harper who sold to Mr. Hollaway Huff who has been a very valuable and highly
esteemed citizen of the Lorman Community for many years.
Among those who worked faithfully to build Lorman was Dr. B. R. Clark. He opened
his office here for the practice of medicine almost forty years ago. He served
the community untiringly not only as a physician---but by putting forth his
efforts to promote every good cause for the up building of the community.
This article from Fayette Chronicle, dated, September 8, 1958
was transcribed from copy found in Special Collections Branch, Mitchell Library,
Mississippi State University.
Contributed by Anthony Miller