We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at F. S. Roberts & Son Funeral Home and Cremation Service
Elizabeth Alice (McCullam), 95, of Railroad Avenue, Rowley, MA, passed away at home on Sunday, December 5, 2021. She was born in Malden, MA, on September 1, 1926 to James and Eliza May (Worthley) McCullam. After the death of her mother in 1929 and her father in 1934, she was raised by her beloved grandparents, Charles Alfred and Allie Maud (Reed) Worthley. From 1926 to 1949 winters were lived in Malden, but summers were spent joyfully on Railroad Ave., Rowley among an extended Worthley family. It was a time for young people and children to be free to wander, to swim in the nearby river and hear the train whistles as their only clocks. It was a happy, unworried life.
Elizabeth graduated from Malden High School, Class of 1944 and the former Salem Teachers College, Class of 1948. She was hired to teach second grade in Rowley’s Center School, but it proved to be a difficult year, so in 1949 she transferred to the first grade at the Brown School in Newburyport where she would continue until retirement in 1987.
In December 1950, she married Guy R. Hicken, Jr., known to all as “John”. His family had long, long roots in Rowley, having lived for generations in what is now known as “The Rowley Pancake House”. He predeceased her in 1980. They had no children. Elizabeth always said she had her children in school, and they were always six years old. But she had many dear and close friends.
After the death of her husband, Elizabeth decided to become acquainted with the paternal side of her family, and drove alone to Illinois, Indiana, Arkansas, and once in a while to Florida annually for several years. There she made lifelong friends with a stepbrother and at least a dozen cousins. It was there that she learned that her father’s mother, Piamisee McCullum, was a Native American connected to the Chippewa tribe. She felt great pride that some of her ancestors arrived on the Mayflower and that some were already here.
Elizabeth was the Treasurer of the Rowley Historical Society for thirty-five years. She was also a member of the Malden Historical Society and the Sandy Bay Historical Society, various teacher organizations and previously, to the Daughters of the American Revolution. She was also a member of the Ipswich Methodist Church and its Sunshine Workers. She was an ardent Democrat. A favorite part of her life was serving on Rowley’s 350th Anniversary Committee in 1989. Having attended Rowley’s Tercentenary in 1939, she was looking forward to the celebration in 2039.
Elizabeth is survived by a half-sister, Gayle McCullum Hackbarth of Florida; two cousins, David Lence and his wife, Brenda of Florida, Diana Crosby and her husband, Donald of Georgia and their children and grandchildren. And, especially, by wonderful friends.
Calling hours will be held on Saturday, December 18, 2021 beginning at 10 a.m., at F. S. Roberts & Son Funeral Home, 14 Independent Street, Rowley, with a Funeral Service at 11 a.m. Burial will follow at Rowley Burial Ground. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Friends of Rowley Council on Aging, P. O. Box 523, Rowley, MA 01969 or the Rowley Food Pantry, 153 Main Street, Rowley, MA 01969. To light a memorial candle to leave condolences, please visit www.fsrobertsandson.com