Charles Franklin Zachary was born April 13th, 1869 in Cashiers Valley, the 10th child of Mordecai and Elvira (Keener) Zachary. In April 1870, little Charlie took his first steps, recorded on the wall like height measurements (still readable to this day at the Zachary-Tolbert House). When Mordecai Zachary sold his Cashiers’ Greek Revival house in 1873, four-year-old Charlie moved with his family to what is now the Whittier area.
The United States declared war on Spain in April 1898 and on May 11th, Charles, now age 29, enlisted in the 2nd Regiment of North Carolina Volunteers. He was promoted to Corporal on June 27th and completed his enlistment on Novemher 7th, 1898 – a six month tour
Sometime before March 1901, family story has Charles traveling by train to California with his sisters, Rose and Hattie. He settled in Kennett, California, a mining town at the base of the Cascade Mountain Range. [now under Shasta Lake] Charles worked as a house carpenter, not a surprising occupation for the son of a master carpenter and furniture maker. He married Isadora Rogers on November 19th, 1902, and they had only one child, John Lyman Zachary, born December 4th, 1905. Due to complications of childbirth, Isadora died shortly after the birth. Charles never remarried and his older sister, Amelia Josephine Zachary Wallace would help raise his boy.
Between 1914 and 1916, Charles moved from Kennett to Harrison Gulch, possibly to start a new venture or pastime.In 1918 he had 20 separate mining claims, either Quartz or Chrome, with fanciful names such as “King Solomon Chrome Mine” and “Queen Ester Quartz Mine” and one named after his son, “Lyman Zachary Chrome Mine”. In the mid 1920s, Charles changed professions and becomes a Rancher.
When Charles was 58, his son married Pansie Morris on November 8th, 1927. Charles saw two grandchildren born (Wanda, 1928 and John, 1929) before being diagnosed with cancer in 1932. After three weeks at a nursing home for disabled volunteers in Los Angles, he decided to live out the rest of his days near family and familiar surroundings. He saw his last grandchildren (twins Mervin and Marion born September 1933) before passing away on May 11th, 1934, at St. Caroline Hospital, Redding, Shasta County, California at age 65. Charles is buried next to his wife Isadora in Redding Memorial Cemetery. Although Charles never returned East, many of his descendants have visited Cashiers and Matthew Zachary donated five granite benches which are scattered around the Zachary-Tolbert House
Contributed by Jane Gibson Nardy, Historian, Cashiers Historical Society