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Mary Elizabeth Bassett Morten Collection

Mary Elizabeth Bassett Morten is the daughter of the late William McKinley Bassett and Gladys Clark Bassett.  She is the wife of Spencer Wood Morten, Jr. and they are still at home near Eltham where she lived prior to her marriage.  She is a graduate of St. Mary's College and Hollins College and her education included furniture manufacturing and business that surrounded her and her family.

Mary Elizabeth grew up with a love of family and community and has always been a guiding influence in the many projects in which she believed.  Her support of Pocahontas Bassett Baptist Church which was named in honor of her paternal grandmother, Pocahontas Hundley Bassett (Mrs. J.D. Bassett, Sr.), and her support of many organizations and community projects have been ongoing.

Both her paternal grandmother and her mother were charter members of Bassett Garden Club, a tenacious group of ladies who were determined to see that the Bassett area possessed a library for the community to use.  This was in 1949 when store rooms and an empty elementary school were used.  In 1955, Mary Elizabeth's father spearheaded a community drive for funds for Bassett Public Library to be built.  In 1988, Mary Elizabeth herself spearheaded a community drive for an addition to Bassett Public Library, the building that now houses the Bassett Historical Center.  With both of her parents being on the first Board of Trustees of the Library, Mary Elizabeth and her husband have also both served on the Board.  Their son, Spencer III, is now serving on the current Board of the Historical Center.

The Mary Elizabeth Bassett Morten Collection is now housed at the Bassett Historical Center, a collection that deals with 731 families that are based on fifty years of genealogical research.  This collection is indexed and is accessible and appreciated by many patrons.  We at the Bassett Historical Center thank Mary Elizabeth for her suggestions and expertise over the years, for the benefactor that she has been to the Center, and for her gracious support of our efforts in caring for the Center.




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