The Battle siblings.

Charles Tecumseh Battle was not the only distinguished offspring of Charles and Leah Hargrove Battle.

In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: blacksmith Charles Battle, 35, wife Leah, 30, and children Adelia, 5, Geneva, 2, Virgil, 1 month, and Nicholas, 18.

Ada G. and Geneva T. Battle left Wilson to complete their studies in the western part of the state. The Charlotte Observer‘s coverage of Livingstone College’s 1890 commencement mentioned that Ada had received the freshman award for oratory.

Charlotte Observer 5 30 1890

Charlotte Observer, 1890.

In Reminiscences of College Days, his self-published 1904 memoir of Livingston College, William Frank Fonvielle remembered both Battle sisters:

AGB

AGP

Screen Shot 2016-06-21 at 10.24.22 PM

While still in school, Ada Battle began teaching at Wilson’s Colored Graded School. As Fonvielle noted, however, she graduated Scotia Seminary’s Normal and Scientific Department in 1895:

Conord Times 6 13 1895

The Concord Times, 13 June 1895.

A year later, she was well-enough known to personify Wilson’s African-American elite, along with Samuel H. Vick and Braswell R. Winstead:

Screen Shot 2016-06-21 at 10.46.29 PM

Raleigh Gazette, 19 December 1896.

In the 1900 census, Ada G. Battle, 24, is a listed as a teacher at Scotia Seminary in Concord, Cabarrus County, North Carolina. Her younger sister Chandler Battle was enumerated among the school’s students.

On 17 November 1904, Chandler News listed Ada G. Battle of Chandler, Oklahoma, among the teachers certified as first grade instructors. Ada’s brother Nicholas Battle was a Chandler resident, and this seems to be Ada of Wilson.

On 17 September 1905, in Wilson County, Doane Battle, 19, daughter of Charles Battle, married F.O. [Frank Oliver] Williston, 24, of Wilson, son of Henrietta Williston of Fayetteville, North Carolina. Episcopal priest Robert N. Perry performed the ceremony at the residence of James Jenkins before official witnesses F.S. Hargrave, Jenkins, and William Dawson.

In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County, on Stantonsburg Street, widow Cortney Gofney, 50, and lodgers Ada Battle, 30, teacher, and Sylvester Gofney, 16, laborer. (Courtney Battle Goffney may have been Ada’s relative.) Teacher Chandler Battle, 27, is listed in the household of her cousin George H. Porter in Rocky Mount, Edgecombe County. In the census of Salisbury, Rowan County: Frank O. Williston, 26, wife Doane B., 23, and daughter Leah H.E., 3. In Chandler, Logan County, Oklahoma:

In the 1912 Wilson city directory: Battle Ada G tchr Wilson Graded School

Three years later, however, it appears that the peripatetic Ada had returned to Oklahoma. On 26 August 1915, Guthrie’s Oklahoma State Register published a notice of the teachers selected by Logan County schools that included Ada G. Battle, hired in District No. 94.

In the 1920 census of Iowa, Logan County, Oklahoma: 55 year-old Georgia-born farmer Stonewall J. Favers, wife Geneva, 39, daughter [sic] Charles M., 15, and sister-in-law Ada G. Battle, 41. Geneva and Ada’s brother Charles T. Battle also lived in Iowa township. In Chandler, Lincoln County, Oklahoma, their brother Nicholas R. Battle, 56, wife Dora, 58, and son Henry N., 11. Back in North Carolina, in Salisbury, Rowan County: Frank O. Williston, 38, and wife Doane, 33, and children Henrietta, 13, Inez, 8, and Dorothy, 6, and in Brinkleyville, Halifax County: farmer Charles Wright, 36, wife Chanler, 35, and brother June, 29.

On 5 June 1927, the Guthrie Daily Leader ran this respectful notice of the death of Geneva’s husband, Stonewall Jackson Faver:

FAVER, NEGRO LEADER TO BE BURIED SUNDAY
Body To Lie In State In Guthrie During Morning Hour

The body of S. J. Faver, one of Logan county’s best known negro leaders, was to lie in state at the Edwards and McKee funeral home, 301 W. Harrison av. Sunday between 9:30 and 10:30 a.m.
Faver died Friday at his home south of Meridian where he has lived on his one thousand acre farm for the past few years.
Faver was for two terms a county commissioner of Logan county and was on the board at the time the county courthouse was built in 1907. He was on who secured the building for use of the state soon after statehood.
Funeral and burial ceremonies will be from the family residence at 2 p.m. on Sunday.

In the 1930 census of Brinkleyville, Halifax County: Charlie Wright, 42, wife Chandler, 38, and children Charlie, 9, and Nicholas T., 7.  In Washington, D.C.: Frank O. Williston, 49, wife Doane, 44, and children Inez, 18, and Fay, 16, and Weldon Phillips, 38. In Chandler, Lincoln County, Oklahoma: Henry Battle, 22, his wife Vannie, 23, and son Henry Jr., 3, plus widower father Nicholas B. Battle, 64. In Guthrie, Logan County, Oklahoma: Geneva B. Faver, widow, lived alone at 1002 E. Vilas Street.

In the Educational Directory of North Carolina issued for 1934-35 by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, the list of Jeanes Industrial Supervisors (Colored) includes Ada G. Battle of Clinton, Sampson County.

In the 1940 census of Clinton, Sampson County: living at 123 McKoy, which seems to have been a teacherage, Ada G. Battle, 54. In the census of Washington, D.C.: Frank Williston, 58, wife Doane B., 54, and daughter Darthy H., 26. In the census of Brinkleyville, Halifax County: farmer Charlie Wright, 54, wife Chandler, 50, son Chas., 20, (“college — in summer works on farm”), and Nichols, 18. In the census of Chandler, Lincoln County, Oklahoma: farmer Nicholas R. Battle, 75, wife Ella, 39, and children Ada L., 5, Nicholas R., 3, and Evelene, 1. In the census of Guthrie, Logan County, Oklahoma: widow Geneva B. Faver, 60, and daughter Charles Marie Faver, 28, an instructor at Langston State University.

Screen Shot 2016-06-21 at 10.31.44 PM

The Carolina Times, 22 November 1941.

Per Findagrave.com, N.R. Battle died Christmas Eve 1946 and was buried in Chandler, Oklahoma’s Clearview cemetery.

Ada G. Battle made out her will on 7 April 1951. She was living in Wilson again and had been seriously ill since at least the previous October. Her sister Chandler Wright had come from Enfield to tend her during her confinement, and Ada made special provisions for her. She also left bequests to her remaining siblings, Geneva Faver of Guthrie, Oklahoma; Doane Willistoin of Washington, D.C.; and Charles Battle of Mobile, Alabama. Rev. O.J. Hawkins was named executor, and Estella L. Shade (wife of pharmacist Isaac Shade) and pharmacist Darcy C. Yancey witnessed the execution of the document.

Screen Shot 2016-06-19 at 2.33.20 PM

On 12 November 1952, Chandler Battle Wright died at Mercy Hospital in Wilson. Her death certificate noted that her residence was Enfield, Halifax County; that she was 61 years old and married; that she had been born in Wilson County to Charles and Leah Hargrove Battle; and that her occupation was “graduate nurse.” Mrs. Willie H. Smith of Wilson was the informant.

Chandler Wright’s will was filed in Wilson Superior Court six days later. Though her death certificate cited her residence as Enfield, the will notes that she owned two houses in Wilson. Chandler distributed her belongings widely: a desk to cousin Willie Hargrove Smith; a gold necklace with pearl cross to niece Charlie Faver Tilghman (Geneva’s daughter); a dining room suite to son Nicholas L. Wright; a walnut bedroom suite to son Charlie Wright; all her livestock and $25.00 to husband C.W. Wright; her 304 North Pender Street house to son Nicholas; her 306 North Pender Street house to son Charlie; and all personal property to be divided between her sons. Willie H. Smith was named executrix, and Roberta Battle Johnson (daughter of Parker and Ella Burson Battle; a cousin?) and Mary L. Spivey of Wilson were witnesses.

CBW will

In 1957, Willa Allegra Strong submitted a dissertation to the University of Oklahoma Graduate College entitled “The Origin, Development and Current Status of the Oklahoma Federation of Colored Women’s Clubs.” Among the women she interviewed was Geneva B. Faver, and she wrote this about this seminal figure in Guthrie’s black community:

“Mrs. Geneva Faver assumed the office of treasurer in 1940 and has served without interruption since that date. Mrs. Faver, a pioneer citizen of Guthrie, Oklahoma, has functioned as a leader in many areas of service. She was the first music teacher hired to teach in Guthrie public schools. The Negro high school of Guthrie has been named for her husband. Some special serviced rendered to the public by Mrs. Guthrie have included: secretary of the Logan County Republican Central committee, juror in Federal Court, chairman of the city library board, and member of the library board. Mrs. Faver donated a forty acre tract of land for use as a camp site for Negro boys. The location of this site was three miles south of Meridian. The presentation was a memorial to her husband, Stonewall J. Faver.”

Per Findagrave.com, Geneva Battle Faver June 1877-December 1967 and Charlie Faver Tillman 1904-1998 are buried undera double marker at Summit View Cemetery in Guthrie.

3 comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s