2013 Blue Ridge, GA

Minutes of the 2013 HFA Business Meeting 

July 20, 2013

Blue Ridge, GA

The Higdon Family Association business meeting was called to order at approximately 9:00 AM by President, Jane Higdon Brackett. The Rev. Shelby Smith led the invocation and the Pledge of Allegiance.

Jane welcomed everyone for attending and sent out a special welcome to new members, plus some existing members who have not attended for some time. Janice then talked about the Higdon family connection in Fannin County (Leonard Higdon), encouraging anyone to check out the family tree chart that she started and to add their information to it. She continued to talk about Leonard and Mary Arp Higdon and their children and grandchildren. Jane kept reinforcing the 'family connection' that this has all created and encourages everyone to try to get the 'next' generation invovled.

Janice then read a letter from Eugene Smith, expressing his regret that he could not attend the meetin this year due to a recent accident that he was involved in. He gave his regrets that he would need to resign as the association's Historian. He and Georgette extended special thanks to Janice J. Higdon, Helen Allison, along with other members.

The minutes from the 2012 meeting in St. Augustine, Fl were read by Seretary Martha Higdon Tidwell. Other than a correction to the spelling of Eva Wood's name, Nan Higdon Harrison moved to approve and Lee Higdon seconded, and the motion passed.

Tresurer's Report - Janice M. Higdon: As of June 30, 2013, Archive Fund has an ending balance of 2,611.91; General Fund balance of $16,342.54; Scholarship Fund balance of $114,269.55. Total funds in Chesapeake Bank - $133,4=244.00. Actvity since July 1, 2013 - $270 received in dues payments; $115,000 invested in 12 months CD at .5% interest. A more detailed accounting was provided to all members present. Carolyn Cole moved to approve, and L. Frank Higdon seconded. Motion passed.

Reports from Officers:

1st Vice President, Karen Nave Fickes, discussed the 2014 annual meeting to be held in or around the Washington DC area, mid-September or early October, 2014. Details will follow early in 2014.

Newsletter Editor, Barbara Tedford, presented her Higdon Family Newsletter report.

Summary of the Newsletter: the newsletter contiues to appear every other month: November, 2012; January, March, May and July 2013. Average cost per issue - $135.00. Mails a copy to Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada and Nairobi, Kenya in addition to e-mailing to 72 members.
"Copies are sent to non-members whose queries were answered or who sent material to be published. Some leftover copies are sent to prospective members, newly joined members and other interested parties. The family history library in Salt Lake City, the Wisconsin Historical Society and the Special Collections at Western Carolina University are among those on the mailing list."

Treasurer, Janice M. Higdon, still has available copies of the newsletter CD that Randy Cole created. These CDs have a complet run of issues No. 1 (January 1972) to No. 347 (September 2007). Barbara has maintained all the paper copies from 1972 forward. On the DVD that Janice J. Higdon made last year, are information from HFA Historian, Eugene Smith's scrapbooks of the annual meetings to 2011, the newsletters, as well as, programs, photos, handouts and reports. These are available free of charge to HFA Members. Barbara also reminded everyone that our Higdon archive is housed in the Special Collections of the Hunter Library at Western Carolina University.

Barbara continued in her report to thank everyone who sent in articles, stories, and photoes to be published. She encouraged any and everyone to continue sending these in! Barbara also mentioned that as the custodian of the family history volumes, she can look up genealogies for use in writing aticles. Special thanks were given to HFA member, Chuck Higdon, of Toms Rier, NJ, who sent her a copy of his Family Tree Maker Higdon file, which has proven to be an invaluable reference tool.

Finally, thanks went out from Barbara to Randy and Carolyn Cole for passing on the membership databae and to Janice M. Higdon for reimbursing her after each issue of the newsletter. 2013 marked the 41st anniversary of the HFA Newsletter and she gave a salute to all our precious editors: Nancy Higdon (Sept 2006-October 2007), Elisa Walter (Nov 2005-Aug2006); Lisa Atkins (Oct 2002-Sept 2005); Janice J. Higdon (Oct 1998-Sept 2002); Mary Ann Nickell (1997-1998); Jeff & Wanda Jackson (2995-1996); Bonnie Atkins (1994); Frances Higdon Smith (1992-1993); Sarah Peyton (Guest editor 1992_; and the first and longest serving editor, Jo Ann Smith (1972- 1991). A complete copy of her report is available upon request.

Historian, Janice J. Higdon in Eugene Smith's absence: In this report, Eugene outlined his car crash and the resulting effect that it has had on him and his not being able to attend the annual meeting in St. Augustine, FL in 2012. He indicated that he was still unable to attend the HFA meeting in Blue Ridge, saying that he needed to submit his resignation and could he pass the position on to Janice J. Higdon.

Janice contacted Eugene to discuss what needed to be done, which including the updating of the scrapbook for the 2012 HFA meeting, and that she would bring the scrapbook with her to the 2013 HFA meeting in GA, where a new Historian could be named.

There are 8 scrapbooks on file at Western Carolina University, in the special Collections Library. These are available for research on site a the library. Contact at WCU is George Frizzell, Head of Special Collections, and is aware of the Higdon Family Association, Inc. materials. A complete copy of this report is available upone request.

Technologist - Janice J. Higdon: "Web still up, but needs new material." No more Higdon-Huffman reunions as there does not appear to be anyone who will organize and lead this long standing reunion held in Higdonville, NC. Janice Is currently working on a project with the information that Chuck Higdon (Toms River, NJ) provided to the HFA. Spoke with Keith Ritchie and he suggested we create a Higdon facebook page. Janice continues to encourage members to 'review' the web site for errors and suggestions; especially suggestions. We have just purchase the domain name "higdonfamily.org" for the next 5 years. This should come out of the General Fund. She will be submitting expenses for this.

Jane asked for a special 'Thank you' to Janice for all her work on the site.

Reports from Committees:

Nominating - Frances Smith, Chair. Frances read the slate of nominees for office for the 2013-2014 year. The nominees are as follows:

  • President - Karen Nave Fickes, Bethesda MD;
  • 1st Vice President - Kristin Nave Yokoyama, Redondo Beach, CA;
  • 2nd Vice President - L. Frank and Barbara Higdon, Rockport, TX;
  • 3rd Vice President - Charles A. Higdon, Toms River, NJ;
  • Secretary - Martha H. Tidwell, Plano TX;
  • Treasurer - Janice M. Higdon, Moon, VA;
  • 2-Year Directors - Frank Mayfield, Buffalo Grove, IL, and Charles W. Higdon, Alexandria, VA;
  • 1-Year Directors - Paul E. Brown, Tulsa, OK and Janice J. Higdon, San Antonio, TX;
  • Nominations Chair and Parliamentarian - Jane H. Brackett, Blue Ridge, GA;
  • Nominating Committee Members Frances H. Smith, Greensboro AL, and Martha H. Tidwell, Plano TX;
  • Newsletter Editor - Barbara W. Tedford, Elkins, WV;
  • Historian - Carolyn Cole, Blue Ridge, GA;
  • Technologist Janice J. Higdon, San Antonio, TX;
  • Scholarship Chair - William (Bill) Higdon, Moon, VA
  • Committee members, Charles P. Higdon, Clinton, TN and Sally H. Swain, Lebanon, TN)

There being no additional nominations from the floor, motion was made by Charles P. Higdon to accept the nominees for office as read. Motion seconded by Bill Higdon. Motion passed unanimously.

Membership Report - Janice M. Higdon: As of Jun 30, 2013, 8 new members; 62 members renewed; 16 members did not renew membership in 2012; 2 Emeritus Members, Jo Ann Smith and Opal Willis. New member - Wisconsin Historical Society. As of this report, did not have a update on members who had died. Deffered this to Barbara Tedford in her Necrology Report. Update: As of July, 2013, 72 paid members.

Scholarship Award Report - Bill Higdon; Information form Chair, Bill Higdon, indicated that they only received a total of three applications for the current year. The committe reviewed all three, but since there are only two $1,000 HFA Scholarships available, the final two were selected. These two winners will be profile in the HFA newsletter.

First Winner- Amber Smith,

20, of Leitchfield, KY, who was also a winner last year Amber is studying to be a nurse at Elizabethtown Coummunity Technical College at Elizabethtown, KY. Amber was sponsored by HFA Eugen Smith and is the daughter of Douglas and Mary Smith.

Second Winner - Leah Wood,

19, of Andrews, NC. Leah will e majoring in secondary English and theater performance. Leah was sponsored by HFA member and grandmother, Eva Wood, and is the daughter of Keith and Teresa Wood.

Janice M. Higdon, clarified that applicants can be high school graduate, current college students to include 'grad' students. Bill and Janice encouraged attending members to bid on the silent auction items as all monies go to the scholarship fund. New applicants need to submit applications no later than March 31, 2014.

Necrology Report - Barbara Tedford; Barbara read the names of HFA members and other relatives who had died this past year. Shelby Smith then san a verse from "Find Us Faithful" in memory of those passing.

Old Business: none to discuss

New Business:
The Board of Directors recommended raising the HFA meeting fee from $35 to $45. Motion from Nan H. Harrison, seconded by Bill Higdon. Motion passed. Charles P. Higdon made a 'point of order' that we must post this increase in the next newsletter.


It was noted that Mt. Moriah Cemetery, near Higdon Store, GA, has a large number of Fannie County relatives buried there. Encouraged anyone who has not been before, to try and go by.

Annual Banquet:

Meet and greet from 5:30 - 6:30; Dinner will start at 6:30 PM in the lobby area of the hotel, Comfort Inn. Entertainment; Rev. Keith Jones, local storyteller, historian; and musical entertainmet from the Salem Road bluegrass band. Silent auction winners will be announced.

Special Mention

-Martha Tidwell's birthday and Jane and Tom Brackett's 43rd anniversary. Shelby Smith talked about the generous donation of medicine and eye glasses to the citizens of Ecuador. Some Higdons had made donations to this effort.

Installation of 2013-2014 Officers:

Charles P. Higdon oversaw the oath of office.

Motion was made by Bill Higdon and the meeting was adjourned at 10:45 AM.

Martha H. Tidwell

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