JAMES SAMUEL GORHAM, a representative of commercial interests at Rocky Mount, where he is carrying on business as a hardware merchant, was born in Edgecombe County, near Battleboro, North Carolina, June 23, 1872, a son of Henry Wise and Josephine George (Cherry) Gorham, the former a native of Beaufort County and the latter of Edgecombe County.  They were educated in private schools and the father became a farmer of Edgecombe County prior to the Civil War, in which he served as a commissary sergeant.  He was a Democrat in his political views and a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and he lived to the age of seventy-seven years.

James S. Gorham mastered the usual branches of learning that constitute the public school curriculum at Battleboro and when his textbooks were put aside began clerking in a store there, being thus employed for about three years.  He then went to Baltimore, Maryland, where he pursued a commercial course in the Bryant & Sadler Business College, and on its completion returned to Battleboro, where he again engaged in clerking for about three years.  He afterward served as cashier of a small bank at Spring Hope which was a branch of the Planters Bank of Rocky Mount, and in January, 1902, he removed to the latter city where he was associated with the Rocky Mount Supply Company as assistant to the manager for four years.  In 1906 he started out in business independently, as a hardware merchant on Washington Street, and there continued until 1920, when he erected his present store building on Tarboro Street.  Here he carries a general line of hardware and farm machinery, utilizing 16,000 square feet of floor space and employing seven people. 

On the 12th of August, 1905, Mr. Gorham was united in marriage to Miss Isla Cutchin, a native of Edgecombe County, North Carolina, and a daughter of James M. and Cornelia (Wheless) Cutchin of Nash County.  Mrs. Gorham was educated in the public schools of her native county and in the North Carolina College for Women at Greensboro.  By her marriage she has become the mother of three children: James Samuel Jr.; Henry W., who is deceased; and Isla Cutchin, a high school student.  The first named was educated in the public schools of Rocky Mount and subsequently pursued a law course at the University of North Carolina, from which he was graduated with the LL.B. degree in 1936.  He is now associated with his father in the hardware business.  Mrs. Gorham is a member of the Research Club and of the Daughters of the Confederacy, while Mr. Gorham belongs to the Junior Order of United American Mechanics.  He votes with the Democratic party and he belongs to the Methodist Episcopal church, in which he is serving on the board of stewards.

Transcription from the book, North Carolina, the Old North State and the New, volume V, published in 1941, pages 67-68, found on the website, Hathitrust Digital Library (http://www.hathitrust.org), accessed 14 June  2021. 

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