WANTED: Arkansas’ Longest Married Couple

November 19, 2018 | Posted in Arkansas Longest-Married Couple | By

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, November 19, 2018

LITTLE ROCK, AR – For the second year, Arkansas Family Council is accepting nominations for Arkansas’ Longest Married Couple.

Last year’s celebration was a lovely reception hosted by Family Council and Governor Asa Hutchinson and First Lady Susan Hutchinson at the Governor’s Mansion. The top 10 longest married couples were honored with an official letter of recognition from the governor’s office and were entered in the Family Council Arkansas Marriage Hall of Fame. When this year’s search ends in early February 2019, Family Council will again honor the longest married couples and their families

“Sharing these couples’ lifetime stories of commitment and faithfulness to each other encourages the next generation that ‘married happily ever after’ still exists. We are blessed and honored to be able to share these stories of forever love,” Jerry Cox, President of Family Council, said. “In today’s society we are surrounded by naysayers of marriage but the married couples we find will prove them all wrong and show that marriage can last a lifetime.”

“Marriage is a sacred covenant between a man and a woman,” Cox said. “It is not every day that you meet a couple married over 70 years, and when you do, there is truly something special about that relationship.”

Entries for couples married over 70 years can be submitted before February 1, 2019, by sending contact information for both yourself, the candidates for consideration, and marriage date to ken@familycouncil.org.

For more information, please call the Family Council office at 501-375-7000.

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Pictures From Reception For Arkansas’ Longest Married Couple

February 21, 2018 | Posted in Marriage | By

This week, Family Council held a dessert reception at the Governor’s Mansion in Little Rock to honor the husband and wife who have been married the longest in Arkansas — and nine other couples who have been married almost as long:

1. I.B. and Ima Jewel Williams of Biscoe – 80 years, married September 4, 1937.

2. Marlin and Elsie Scott of Batesville – 79 years, married June 25, 1938.

3. Betty and Cletus Hall of Berryville – 78 years, married July 22, 1939.

4. Cleovis and Arwilda Whiteside of White Hall – 78 years, married July 24, 1939.

5. Cecil and Lois Robertson of Heber Springs – 78 years, married September 8, 1939.

6. Gussie and James Stephenson of North Little Rock – 78 years, married December 25, 1939.

7. Thell and Margie Ellison of Natural Dam – 76 years, married June 24, 1941.

8. Grady and Wilma Adcock of Hot Springs – 75 years, married July 3, 1942.

9. JC and Avanelle Merritt of Greenbrier – 75 years, married July 9, 1942.

10. ND and Anna Mae Edwards of Alma – 75 years, married October 24, 1942.

Our thanks to Governor Asa Hutchinson, First Lady Susan Hutchinson, the staff at the Governor’s Mansion, and everyone else who helped make this wonderful event possible.

You can see more photos from the reception here.

Posted by Family Council on Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Family Council to Honor Arkansas’ Longest Married Couples

February 6, 2018 | Posted in Marriage | By

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 6, 2018

LITTLE ROCK, AR – For 80 years of marriage, Family Council will honor, I.B. and Ima Jewel Williams of Biscoe as Arkansas’ Longest Married Couple. The Williams, along with the Top Ten Longest Married Couples, will be celebrated at a special dessert reception at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion with guests Governor Asa Hutchinson and First Lady Susan Hutchinson. This is Family Council’s inaugural year searching for Arkansas’ Longest Married Couple. “We are excited to start this annual tradition of celebrating marriage and finding Arkansas’ Longest Married Couples,” Jerry Cox, President of Family Council said. “The Williams symbolize the good of Arkansas, a state that has always valued marriage, family, and God. The Williams, along with the Top Ten Longest Married Couples, will receive a Special Statement of Recognition from Governor Hutchinson, and the Williams’ family and friends will be present to celebrate this momentous occasion.

I.B. and Ima Jewel Williams, respectively 99 and 94 years old, met at church in Bayou Meto, Arkansas. The story goes that I.B. was attending church with a friend and sat behind Ima Jewel and would pull her hair. He told his friends that he was going to date her, but her dad would not let her date anyone. He then started walking her home from church which was several miles out of his way. One Sunday during summer, Ima Jewel had invited a friend and I.B. Williams and his friend to come over to her home. They were sitting around talking and playing house. He then asked her if she would like to play house for real and she replied yes. They married shortly after on September 4, 1937, and have kept their marriage covenant ever since.

“Congratulations to Arkansas’ Top Ten Longest Married Couples and a special salute to I.B. and Ima Jewel Williams on their amazing 80 year journey,” Cox said. Family Council is honored to have the opportunity to celebrate couples who exemplify devotion to God and their marriage covenant. Along with the Williams, the Top Ten Longest Married Couples will be honored at a special reception at the Governor’s Mansion Tuesday, February 20th. These are Arkansas’ Top Ten Longest Married Couples:

  • I.B. and Ima Jewel Williams of Biscoe – 80 years, married September 4, 1937
  • Marlin and Elsie Scott of Batesville – 79 years, married June 25, 1938
  • Betty and Cletus Hall of Berryville – 78 years, married July 22, 1939
  • Cleovis and Arwilda Whiteside of White Hall – 78 years, married July 24, 1939
  • Cecil and Lois Robertson of Heber Springs – 78 years, married September 8, 1939
  • Gussie and James Stephenson of North Little Rock – 78 years, married December 25, 1939
  • Thell and Margie Ellison of Natural Dam – 76 years, married June 24, 1941
  • Grady and Wilma Adcock of Hot Springs – 75 years, married July 3, 1942
  • JC and Avanelle Merritt of Greenbrier – 75 years, married July 9, 1942
  • ND and Anna Mae Edwards of Alma – 75 years, married October 24, 1942

Stories and pictures of Arkansas’ Longest Married Couples of 2018 will be released on our website the week of the reception.

Family Council is a conservative education and research organization based in Little Rock with a mission of promoting, protecting, and strengthening traditional family values.

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Photo Credit: By Jeff Belmonte from Cuiabá, Brazil (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.