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1931 May Family Reunion
See group photo

Another reunion was held that year at the home of Reuben Thomas May

We have two records of the "3rd May Reunion" plus a great photograph of the gathering at the home of Mr. and Mrs. William Greenwade of Cliff, Ky. - north of Prestonsburg. Mrs. Greenwade was Fanny Hager, granddaughter of Samuel May [1820-1904]. Minutes memorializing the reunion say that 190 registered at the meeting - but the list of attendees has not been preserved. We are fortunate, however, to have a full list of 310 attendees - with many familiar names of the extended May family - that registered at the 1932 reunion.

An article in the Floyd County Times gives a public account of the reunion A summary of the article is given below and a facsimile copy is also available.

Members of the May famly from Montgomery, Jessamine and other Bluegrass counties met with those from this section. Mr. Greenwade "threw open his spacious storeroom at the end of his lawn, and those attending found, upon entering in lieu of store fixtures along the counters a veritable feast spread for their pleasure."

After listing the speakers the article described the May family as one of the largest in Eastern Kentucky, with numerous representatives throughout the state, that came to Kentucky with the early settlers from Virginia and have taken a prominent part in the development of the state. Of Scotch-Irish descent, this family has produced teachers, ministers, lawyers and officials of high honor.
[NOTE: Many spouses brought "Scotch-Irish" bloodlines to our family, but in the 1930s our German Meÿ ancestry was not locally known to exist.]

The idea for reunions was conceived in 1929 by Dr. [William Boyd] Robinson of Mt. Sterling. The officers were listed as being: Dr. Robinson, president; Earl May, Leesburg, Ky., vice-president; Mrs. W. B. Robinson, secretary; and Allene May, Wilmore, Ky., treasurer. The first meeting was held at the home of Dr. Robinson and the 1930 meeting was held at the home of David May in Nicholasville, Ky.

Handwritten minutes - unsigned but probably prepared by the secretary, Mrs. William Boyd Robinson - give an official account of the reunion:

Facsimile copies of these minutes are available for our family records.

On Aug. 23rd, 1931 the third annual reunion of the May family met at the home of Mr. & Mrs. W. Greenwade and D. Mark Hager near Prestonsburg. On the opposite bank of the big Sandy River could be seen the old house site of Samuel May. At an early hour the Mays began to arrive. Some on foot , some on horseback, some in wagons and some in cars.

The morning was spent in greeting old acquaintances and in making new ones. At noon in the long store room in the yard the counters were spread with linens and filed high with all kinds of good eats. As the clock struck twelve, Mrs Florence Hereford, the daughter of Samuel and Mary May blew the old trumpet that her mother used years ago to call the men home from the field at the noon hour.

Thanks for our Divine blessing were voiced by David May and D. Mark Hager. One hundred and ninety registered as they filed through the door of the store room. All enjoyed the bountiful repast of ham, lamb, beef, chicken, salad, vegetable, sandwiches, potato chips, pickles, pies, cakes, ice cream and plenty of hot tea and coffee.

The meeting was then called to order by the president, W. B. Robinson. The minutes were read and approved of the previous meeting. Then the officers were elected for the coming year. the motion was made by Jack May and seconded by Frank May that the same officers be retained for the coming year - voted on and passed.

David May was called on and with his old accustomed vigor gave a splendid talk. He was followed by D. Mark Hager, that grand old soldier of the cross whom we all loved so well. The next called upon was the pastor [Rev. J. M. Helm] of the M. E. Church at Prestonsburg who gave a very appropriate talk for the occasion.

Congressman Jack May with plenty of his wit and humor gave us many of the facts and traditions of the May family and closed by inviting us all to visit him in Washington - but not all at the same time. Pictures of the whole group were then taken by a photographer from Salyersville.

The question was brought up as to where we should next meet and Mrs. Florence Hereford very generously invited us to meet at her home near Prestonsburg. After partaking of a watermelon feast, the good byes were said and all departed at the close of a perfect day.

Family notes:

  • Mrs William Greenwade , nee Fanny Hager (1879 - aft.1949), was the daughter of Daniel Mark Hager (1846-1932) and Elizabeth Magdaline May (1849-1908), and the granddaughter of Samuel May (1820-1904).

  • Dr. W. B. Robinson (b. 1877 d. aft. 1949) was a son of Dorcas May (1845-1928) and a grandson of Samuel May (1820-1904).
  • Rev. David May (1847-1943) was a son of Samuel May (1820-1904) and a grandson of Thomas May (1787-1867).
  • Hon. A. J. May (1875-1959) was a son of John May (1832-1926) and a grandson of Reuben May (1800-1840). He served in the U.S. Congress from March 1931 to January 1947.

Anyone with information of other May family reunions can contact me for assistance in having them placed on this site.

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© 2000 Fred T. May