Jessie Eugertha Bell Hobson

Greenbrier Baptist Church Cemetery

        Jessie Eugertha Bell Hobson, daughter of the late John Waddy and Jessie Walton Bell, was born November 14, 1918 in Powhatan County, VA. She was the eldest of eight children: Viola, John, Alonzo, Mattie, Samuel, Celestine, and Juanita.

        She received her education in Powhatan County Schools and graduated from the first graduating class of Powhatan Colored High School in 1938.

        On March 26, 1939 she married the late James Edward Hobson. They were blessed with five children: Earl, Roger, Charles, Tracy and Josephine.

        Eugertha accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Savior at an early age and was baptized into the fellowship of Mount Zion Baptist Church, where her membership remained. She was active as a Sunday school teacher and was a member of the Willing Workers Ministry. She was an avid believer in making sure that everyone under her roof attended Sunday School and Church every Sunday. She was determined to have you rooted and grounded in the Lord. The sowing of God's seed in you started with her. She consistently molded, nutured and prepared you to go out into the world.

        Eugertha enjoyed gardening, fishing, poetry, quilting, and painting. Her quilts and paintings can be seen in the homes of many relatives and friends.

        She was very active in community affairs and the civil rights movement. She was one of the key players in helping to bring about integration in the Powhatan County school systems.

        She worked with the Voter's Education Committee and would often say "Voteless people are voiceless people" and "if you are a good Christian, you must be a good citizen". In 1963, she participated in the March on Washington and in 1964 she was among the marchers that protested against the Justice Department and called on the Attorney General, Robert Kennedy, to enforce the Civil rights laws that would protect Blacks from the brutality in the South because they tried to vote.

        Another major accomplishment was her role in working with the family to rename Cartersville Road to Bell Road in honor of her grandfather, John Tyler Bell.

        Eugertha was truly an instrument for equality, justice, love, and peace. She loved her God, Family, Church, Friends, and Country. She always tried to make America a better place to live.

        She was preceded in death by her husband, James Hobson, her parents, John and Jessie Bell, three brothers, John, Alonzo and Samuel Bell, two sisters, Mattie West and Celestine Hairston and one foster daughter, Gail Donegan Miles.

        Cherishing her memory are her children: Earl (Helen), Roger Sr. (Betty), Charles (Susie), Tracy (Brenda) and Josephine (Marshall). Her grandchildren: Roger, Jr. (Tracy), Orlando, Sr. (Lishell), Ortega, Wynter, Brian, Trina (Brian W.), Carmen "Nikki", Rhonda, and Tamara. Her Great-grandchildren: Renaldo, Stacey, Orlando, Jr., Randi, LaAndre', Whitney, Angel, Marcus, Kaylah, Tyrese, Tyrone, and Lera. Her sisters: Viola and Juanita. Two beloved nieces, that she raised as her own: Yolanda (Edward) and Mattie (Roger). Sister-in-laws: Evelyn Bell, Lillie Bell, Esterine Bell, and Annie Brown. Brother-in-law: John Hairston. Step sisters: Mabel Walton, Ophelia Watson and Drucilla Davis. Four dedicated and committed individuals who cared for and stood by her from beginning to end during her illness: Mattie, Karen, Florine, and Eunice. Two foster sons: Larry and John Donegan. Nephew and niece she cared for and raised: Stanley Morton and Brenda Bell (deceased).

reprinted by permission
@ 2009 Powhatan County Historical Society. All rights reserved