In Loving Memory of Jean McGregor Rockhold

Jean McGregor Rockhold

Jean McGregor Rockhold's time with us is defined by pride in her heritage,  joy in her family and friends, and passion for the community of Roswell. She devoted 40 years of volunteer work in creating many of the exhibits in the Historical Society for Southeastern New Mexico Museum. She and Mary Lou Glass partnered on many excursions around the area to collect the unique objects to recreate history for the museum.

No doubt, every community has citizens--unsung heroes-- who form the
character of a town--those who volunteer and dedicate their time and talents to youth, to the elderly and to community projects that make life better for
all of us.

Jean was one of those special people in Roswell. She was born Sept. 9, 1915 and died at the age of 101 on Jan. 15, 2017. Jean was a first generation American, born to Scottish immigrants Catherine Primose Jaffrey and Robert McPherson Watt, who came to Roswell in 1912. Robert was a finishing carpenter, and worked on many local projects, including the courthouse carpentry during his career.

Jean came from a family of artists and artisans—carpenters, shoemakers and hatmakers, many ancestors from the Scottish highlands surrounding Aberdeen, Scotland.  Jean herself was quite an artist, and, although she never taught in the schools, she donated her time to teaching sewing to youth. Her home was the center for her children's friends, since her cooking and especially baking were after-school favorites in the neighborhood. It was her tutelage and her daughter's talent that resulted in daughter Margaret  winning the 1967 national "Make It With Wool" contest, sponsored by the American Wool Council, the American Sheep Industry, and the American Sheep Industry Women.

Jean and her husband Cecil Rockhold were active community members, involved in several civic groups over the years. They were founding members of the Westminster Presbyterian Church and took leadership roles there, as well. Cecil preceded her in death, as did her parents and siblings Robert (Mac) Watt, Louisa Putrus and Kate Barone. She is survived by son Cecil (Rocky) Rockhold Jr. and daughter Margaret, grandchildren Chris Rockhold of Lawton, OK and Sarah Elliott of Phoenix, AZ.

If she were alive today, she would urge the community to donate time and money to sustain the history of Roswell and pride in our community through the Historical Society for Southeastern New Mexico.