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High, Seth and Clara Lee

Seth Elonza High, Jr.
February 9, 1908-October 16, 1971
Clara Lee Spruill High
October 10, 1909-July 17, 1990

Seth Elonza High, Jr., was an astute businessman and community leader who made an impact on the banking industry. Born in Wilson County to Lura and Seth Elonza High, he attended public schools in Washington D.C. and Lucama, North Carolina.

He began his banking career in Fayetteville, NC, before he joined his father in The Lucama Bank in 1928 as Cashier. He was instrumental in opening branches of The Lucama Bank in Kenly, Bailey and Sims.

Upon the death of his father, he became president in 1956, and held that position until 1970. He also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Lucama-Kenly Bank, Kenly Savings and Loan Association, Branch Bank and Trust Company, and First Citizens Bank. In 1970, he became a consultant to Heritage Bank, formerly The Lucama-Kenly Bank, and served in that capacity until his death.

In addition to his banking duties, he and his long time banking associate and friend, Huber L. Bass, established and operated Bass and High Insurance Agency.

Civic affairs and family were important to him He was a member of Lucama Methodist Church and served on the Board of Stewards. He was an active member of the Lucama Lions Club: Masonic Lodge, Sudan Temple of New Bern, Wilson Elks Club, and Wilson Country Club.

In 1934, he married the former Clara Lee Spruill, of Columbia, North Carolina. Clara Lee Spruill High was wisdom, integrity, and honesty personified as a wife, educator community leader and mother. She was born in Tyrell County in 1909 and attended Columbia High School, graduating in 1925 as Valedictorian of her class. In 1929, she graduated from East Carolina Teachers College and went to Lucama High School to teach mathematics.

She taught mathematics for eighteen years in the Wilson and Lucama schools, earning several certificates of appreciation from The Wilson County Board of Education for her devotion to her students. Her community services involved her church and school. She was an active member of Lucama Methodist Church and the Methodist Women. She served as Chairman of the Finance Committee and on various other committees. After she no longer taught school, she was still involved in education by serving on the Lucama School Board.

She met S. E. High, Jr. when she came to Lucama to teach, and they were married in 1934. They had three children: Seth Elonza High, III (who died in 1938), Susan Spruill High Edgerton and Lura Berry High Regan; four granddaughters: Lure Spruill Edgerton Graham, Lee Anne Edgerton Hulse, Susan Lee Regan, and Catherine Anne Regan; and, at present, two great-granddaughters; Hallie Middleton Hulse and Catherine Lee Graham.

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