Robert Jones Belue was born approximately two miles from Gowensville, SC in 1878. The son of Robert J. and Sallie Belue, young Robert was totally blind by the age of three. At the age of eight, he was accepted by the Cedar Spring School. When they accepted him, Robert was the youngest student ever accepted by the School to that point. After completing his career at the Cedar Spring School, Robert Belue became a music instructor in Spartanburg and Union counties.
He eventually left South Carolina for Boston, Massachusetts to become a concert musician. There, he became a student of the internationally acclaimed pianist, Carl Faelten. Before his first public recital, however, Robert Belue was diagnosed with neuritis. While he was able to perform at that recital, he never did so again. He remained for many years in Boston, marrying a local woman named Effie Wiswell and operating a music shop.
In 1957, Belue retired from his business and remained in Boston until approximately 1962, when he moved back to South Carolina. An avid reader and writer, he gave nineteen of his unpublished short stories to the Furman University English Department and Library for use in instruction and research.
*This information is taken from an article entitled “Author, 87, Deplores ‘Decency’ Decline; Donates 19 Stories to Furman.” It appeared in the June 16, 1966 edition of The Greenville Piedmont.