Reuben Golding and the Stokes County Mining Company, Stokes County, North Carolina + a mystery

Golding / Golden / Goulding et al Family History on Facebook


Reuben Golding and the Stokes County Mining Company,  North Carolina

Note: Stokes was once part of Surry County which is a where a large group of Goldings live today. They are descendent from William Golding, oldest son of William and Elizabeth Foster Golding.

Mystery: When did Reuben die? MANY Ancestry.com genealogies claim that he died in 1856; no source given and none found.  He did have a son named Reuben born in 1847 but it is unlikely that a seven year old child would be buying an iron works company.  The 1860 census also indicates that a Reuben Golding was operating a forge and an a smithy.

Moratock Mining and Manufacturing CompanyIn 1854 Moody’s Tunnel Iron Works (built in 1843), aka Tunnel Bloomery Forge, was purchased by Reuben Golding, who formed the Stokes Iron Mining company. During the Civil War the industrial needs of the Confederacy stimulated increased interest in the state’s iron works, and in 1862 Golding and a group of other men incorporated the Moratock Mining and Manufacturing Company. (see also this link) It did not survive the Civil War, and in 1875 it was sold at public auction to Col. Jonathan M. Heck of Raleigh.

Also mentioned in this mortgage deed is the “well-known” forge that the said Johnson Clements sold to the said Nath. Moody,” indicating an earlier iron works possibly on the site of Moody’s Tunnel Iron Works.

In 1854 the iron works was purchased for $3,000 by Reuben Golding, a wealthy Stokes County citizen who formed the Stokes Iron Mining Company. The 1860 United States Census indicates that Golding was operating both the forge, valued at $5,000, and a “smith shop,” valued at $1,000.

Source: Stoke County Historic Inventory, Final Report, prepared by Laura A. W. Phillips, Architectural Historyian for the Stokes County Historical Society, 1989, page 23.

Moratock Furnace (2013) Photo: Mount Airy Museum of Regional History
Moratock Furnace (2013) Photo: Mount Airy Museum of Regional History

Reuben Golding as lifelong businessman

From other notes found on the web: R.D. Golding AKA Ruben D.Golding was a prominent merchant in Danbury, North Carolina. Married Mary Bitting. He served as Trustee of Stokes County & Clerk of Court (1837-40). In the 1860 Census he is shown as a wealthy farmer in the Germantown, Stokes County, NC region. The Goldings family married into the Hollingsworth and Hill families, which in turn married into the Covington, Davis and Fulton families.


You are welcome to add to or to correct this story by contacting: Bill Golden, Norfolk1956@gmail.com

BTW – I look forward to sharing your Golding/Golden/Goulding et al stories, photos and in-search-of quests. Contact me at the email address above.

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