Bea Collins


Mrs.  Beatrice Collins graduated from Carson – Newman College in Jefferson City, Tenn. in 1937, with a Bachelor of Arts degree, and a special award of merit in dramatics. She returned to Winchester and taught English in the high school for a short time, before the outbreak of WW II when she went to work for National Life and Insurance Co. in Nashville. There she met Sargent Bob Collins, United States Army Air Corps. They married on Aug. 23, 1943, under the pergola on her parent's lawn. Sargent Collins was a widower with a three-year-old daughter, Margaret Kay, who came to live with them. In 1948, a son, Robert Alexander was born. The family lived in Atlanta, Ga. and Louisville, Ky. before returning to Winchester to open a business, Collins Wholesale Supply.

Mrs. Collins was an invaluable member of the firm. She was a gifted musician, singing, playing the piano and organ and directing the choir at the First Baptist Church and later at the First Methodist Church. She taught the ladies Sunday school class for many years. She painted beautifully and wrote many, many poems. After retirement, Mr. and Mrs. Collins restored her grandfather's home 'Valentine Square' where they frequently enjoyed entertaining their family and friends.

Following her mother's model, she became a published historian who specialized in Franklin County subjects. Her articles appeared in newspapers and she was seen on television speaking of local history. Again she appeared in print and on television writing and speaking about another interest, collecting dolls. She restored and researched over 300 dolls of all kinds. 

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