Meadowbrook Museum Collections

Dot King

Dot King with CIvil War Coverlet

Interview with Dot King (b.1930), conducted on February 27, 2023 by museum volunteer Sarah Orrick. Dot tells the stories behind items that she donated to the Meadowbrook Museum.


About Dorothy Louise (“Dot”) Sisson King

Dot King was born on August 29, 1930 in Bluefield, West Virginia, the second eldest in a family of five girls. Her father, Ford Sisson, was a carpenter, rock mason, and farmer. Her mother, Lila Shepherd Sisson, was a homemaker.

Dot grew up on a farm in Alleghany Springs (Otey, Virginia) where the family raised pigs, chickens, and cows, and had a garden in which her father took great pride. Dot’s responsibility was the pigs; her older sister took care of the chickens and the milk cow. Her mother made butter, cottage cheese, and hard cheese. Dot was active in 4H. She fed and groomed calves and sewed a suit of flour sacks for competition.

Dot learned to play the piano at her father’s urging because they needed a pianist a church. Ford loved to sing, which he did loudly and proudly from the front pew every Sunday. (Dot is still playing keyboards for the church at the age of 92.)

Dot was valedictorian of her senior class. She attended Radford College at the age of 16 and finished a degree in Home Economics in three years. She started her first job as a Home Economics teacher in Franklin County at the age of 19. She later taught other subjects and grade levels, but eventually became the first Elementary School principal in Shawsville.

Dot married George Walter (“GW”) King on June 29, 1952 in the Piedmont Methodist Church in Shawsville. They had two daughters, Melinda Kay and Martha Leigh.

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