Dr. James A. Howard, Dark Corner native and well-known Baptist minister and administrator, was the unofficial historian of the area. He is a direct descendent of Captain Thomas Howard of the Battle of Round Mountain fame. He had said for many years that he would like to write a book on the Corner.
The only published work on the immediate area had been the Rev. J. Dean Crain’s memoir, A Mountain Boy’s Life Story, published by the Baptist Courier in 1915, which had long been out of print. Dr. John B.O. Landrum had made numerous references to the Dark Corner in his Colonial and Revolutionary History of Upper South Carolina, published in 1897.
In 1980, I encouraged Jim to gather his years of notes and memories and write a definitive book on the heritage of this region. His wife, Ruth, had a heart attack that year, so I assisted him with editing, photographs and illustrations for the book. He called it Dark Corner Heritage, and asked me to draw a picture of Captain Thomas Howard’s boyhood cabin for the cover.
In appreciation of my efforts in publishing the book, and, he said, my personal devotion to continue telling the heritage as the Squire, he passed the mantle of Dark Corner historian to me in the last chapter. It was a humbling moment.