Pauline Johnson Anderson, resident of Westwood Hills Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Wilkesboro, turns 104 Friday.

She is a member of Cub Creek Baptist Church and said the key to her longevity is drinking lots of sweet tea.

She was born Aug. 16, 1915, to Willie G. and Pearlie Harris Johnson in Iredell County.

The family moved to the Rocky Creek area of the Brushy Mountains of Wilkes County when she was around 5.

Pauline made her first trip to downtown North Wilkesboro riding in the back of a wagon pulled by two big white horses in the early 1920s. They camped overnight and made the trip home the next day.

She married Wilburn C. Anderson at the Wilkes County Courthouse in 1933, when she was 18. They rented a two-room house from Foote Fletcher and attended Rocky Creek Baptist Church. Their closest neighbors included the Bud Lowe and Jonah Costner families.

Pauline and Wilburn had been married 75 years when he died at age 96. They had three sons, six grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. She has one brother still living, Robert “Bob” Johnson of Moravian Falls, and numerous nieces and nephews. Her nieces include Martha Bauguess.

Pauline’s oldest child, Bill Anderson of Moravian Falls, was born in the house rented from Fletcher.

Their other children were Buddy Anderson, who died in January 2015, and Rick Anderson of Moravian Falls.

The Andersons and their three young children moved into a new home on Brocktown Road, near where it intersects with N.C. 16 in Moravian Falls, in 1944.

Wilburn Anderson passed on his interest in politics and support for the Republican Party to his sons.

Bill G. Anderson was Wilkes County sheriff from 1974 to 1978, and was chairman of the Republican Party in Wilkes for many years.

He was honored with placement of two “Bill G. Anderson Highway” signs along N.C. 16 in Moravian Falls in 2015.

Pauline had four brothers and one sister who lived to adulthood.

Her late brothers include Jessie James Johnson of Moravian Falls, W.G. Johnson of Lincolnton and John Johnson, who lived most of his life in Wilkes but was living in Iredell when he died.

Her sister, the late Lilla Belle Hayes, married Ed Hayes from Wilkesboro and lived in Catawba County.

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