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  • Shirley Burns

Bolton Family Returns Home to Celebrate


Lost art cooking skills

Descendants of one of the oldest families in the Bolton community recently returned home from several states throughout the USA to celebrate the memories of their deceased ancestors.


The West/Burns families came from Arkansas, California, Florida, Pennsylvania, Illinois , Tennessee, and of course were joined by the Mississippi family members.


The celebration was held at the home of the late Cleveland and Maggie West in the Pleasant Hill Community of Bolton. They began on Friday evening with a meet and greet, a wine sampling time, and a sit down dinner. which included a fish fry.


Saturday morning began with the journey to the Bolton Cemetery (in the rain) where all nine of their original generation, plus others were buried. They proceeded to tidy up the cemetery then led a solemn ceremony by placing flowers and sharing memories and expressions of love for each deceased member buried there. The visit to the cemetery was the main reason for their coming to the old hometown of their ancestors on this particular day and time.

Most amazingly was the fact that each of the deceased ancestors lived to between 90 and 100 years of age (except one) and one family member present at the celebration is currently at age ninety-four.

After the memorial celebration they all returned to the Pleasant Hill community where Cleveland and Maggie West and most of the siblings resided for many years. They all sat down to reminisce of precious memories.


Later they began preparation for a fun-filled evening which they called “Celebrating Our Ancestors Under the Stars” That celebration went late into the night and for some, all-night. The celebration included a meal of BBB (Best Bolton Barbeque) with all the trimmings, a fashion extravaganza of African attire, line dancing, and a humongous bonfire. Others from the community were invited to join the celebration


They shared much love and fellowship even while wearing their masks, and to this date we have not had a report of any outbreak of the virus among the family members, all praises to God.


Sunday ended with a family-style brunch and they departed for their various homes. This weekend of fun, fellowship, love and memories will forever be etched in the hearts and minds of the younger West and Burns generation from Bolton, Mississippi.



Alvin Evans, Wendy Thomas, Poncho Thomas, Pearlie Evans, Ray Evans, Timothy Evans and Charlette Evans

Front Row: Floyd Davis, Shri Green, Felicia Jones, Gladys Johnson, Floyd Burns, Debra Davis and Betty Burns

Back Row: Fannie Burns, Shelia Johnson, Edgar Jones, Alicia McKinney and Niehaus McKinney



Floyd Davis, Debra Davis, Shri Green, Gladys Johnson, Floyd Burns, Betty Burns, Alicia McKinney, Felicia Jones, Edgar Jones and Niehaus McKinney



Front Row: Lynette Thomas, Franchetta Honer, Wendy Thomas, Alvin Evans and Timothy Evans

Back Row: Pearlie Evans, Charlette Evans, Poncho Thomas, Ray Evans and Willie Lynum