The Extended Presley Family Network

Rosella Presley


Rosella's Story (cont'd...)as told by Mackey Hargett


John Wallace

JohnWallace was born August 1, 1853 in Itawamba County, MS, to Hugh and Lidya Gideon Wallace.


John later became a farmer who bought and sold properties, and who also was a fiddle player in Tilden and played at most of the local barn dances there. He played quite often at a resort cabin known as "Linger Longer" and would meet up there with Rosella Pressley who would spend many a night there dancing and socializing. The two became acquainted and began to meet on a regular basis.


John had been married once before and lived with his first wife in Texas where she died. John and his firstborn son, William Hugh Wallace, then moved back to MS where he met and marriet Elmira McFadden.


John Wallace died November 17, 1935.


The fate of Rosella Pressley was in large part owing to the circumstances surrounding her poverty-ridden, deprived childhood. Never a bad or mischeavous girl, both she and her sister were raised in Church and remained Christian until their dying days. It was during one Sunday mass when Rosella and Rosalinda's father, Dunning Pressley, up and left his family to never return to them. He had gone home to Tennessee and the family he had left behind there before the war. The War Between States had bred alot of hardship and hard feelings for folks from the South. For many years thereafter it was a lost culture, a society bent on reconstruction and readjusting. People at that time often wondered if they would ever "come back" from the tragic fate befallen them from four years of war and eight years of rebuilding from the ravages of that war.


Rosie raised her children and supported them mainly by doing odd jobs around and also for a time by sharecropping. She was a hard worker. She also received support for the children from John Wallace. Rosie would send Jessie Dee to see his father to collect the support money.


It was Jessie Dee who related that his mother was a very strict woman, so much so that he left home at the age of 16. Her children had great respect for Rose Pressley who died June 30, 1924 from cancer, a sign of the struggles and stress in the life of one young woman with the weight of the world on her shoulders.



Facinating Family Fact:


The children of Rosie Pressley and John Wallace were given similar names to the children of John and Elmira Wallace.