Applications for military headstones reveal that these men were buried in one of the three cemeteries known collectively as “Rountree.” Of the veterans below, only Willie Gay’s grave marker has been found.
- John Melton
In the 1900 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: John Melton, 42, wife Lucy, 45, sons John, 16, and Samuel A., 13.
In the 1910 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: John Melton, 51, wife Lucy, 55, son Johnnie Jr., 24, boarder James Dudley, 20, and grandson Sam Melton, 12.
On 29 October 1917, John Melton, 26, of Wilson, married Cora Barnes, 25, of Wilson. Rev. Fred M. Davis performed the ceremony in the presence of Linnie Wilson, M.H. Wilson, and Lorena E. Gregg.
In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: house carpenter John Melton, 28, wife Cora, 26, with son Robert O., 1, and cousin Della Griswill, 24.
- Albert Battle
On 28 December 1917, Albert Battle, 31, of Wayne County, son of Albert and Annie Battle, married Hannah Pate, 30, of Stantonsburg, daughter of John and Vinie Pate, in Wilson County. Rev. S.J. Brown, a Freewill Baptist minister, at P.P. Barnes’ house in Stantonsburg in the presence of Smithie Barnes, P.P. Barnes, and Rosa Battle.
In the 1920 census of Great Swamp, Wayne County: Albert Battle, 33, wife Hannah, 31, and daughter Linday, 12, on Pikeville and Fremont Road.
In the 1930 census of Great Swamp, Wayne County: Albert Battle, 43, wife Hannah, 39, sister-in-law Smythia, 45, nieces and nephews Odie, 18, Flossie M., 17, Hettie B., 10, Beatrice, 7, Viola, 6, and James O. Battle, 3.
Albert Battle died 19 March 1936 in Fremont, Wayne County. Per his death certificate, he was born 9 March 1886 in Edgecombe County to Albert Battle and Dossie Ann Drake; worked as a laborer; was married; and was buried in Wilson. Hannah Battle of Fremont was informant.
- Larry Hooks
In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Larry Hooks, 20, listed a prisoner in the county stockade on Wiggins Mill Road.
Lary Hooks, 27, registered for the World War I draft in Wilson County on 5 June 1917. Per his registration card, he was born 10 May 1890 in Fremont, North Carolina, and worked as a “convict on road” in the Nashville road district. He was married and described as medium height and stout with brown eyes and black hair.
Larry Hooks died 3 August 1936 in Wilson’s Mercy Hospital. Per his death certificate, he was married to Sarah Hooks; was born about 1890 in Wayne County to Charlie Hooks and Melvina Reid of Wayne County; and worked as a common laborer. Charlie Hooks of Elm City, North Carolina, was informant.
- Willie Gay
In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Emma Gay, 35, and children Charlie, 15, steam mill worker, Mary, 11, Etheldred, 8, and Willie, 6, plus boarder Fannie Thompson, 19, cook.
On 8 January 1894, Willie Gay, 18, son of Charles and Emma Gay, married Mary Bunn, 21, daughter of Dick and Mary Bunn, at Willie Gay’s house in Wilson. Presbyterian minister L.J. Melton performed the ceremony in the presence of W.M. Phillips, L.A. Moore, and C.C. Williams.
Probably, in the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: day laborer William Gay, 26, a widower, living alone.
On 29 October 1902, Willie Gay, 27, married Mary Johnson, 22, in Wilson. Missionary Baptist minister Fred M. Davis performed the ceremony in the presence of Cain Artis, Chas. S. Thomas, and Robt. E. Artis.
On 23 March 1906, William Gay, 33, son of Charles and Emma Gay, married Augustus McNeil, 30, daughter of Peter and Emily Patterson of Fayetteville, North Carolina, at William Gay’s house in Wilson. Rev. Fred M. Davis performs the ceremony in the presence of J.E. Fanner, Robert Stricklin, and Charlie Fain.
Possibly, in the 1940 census of Kecoughtan, Elizabeth City County, Virginia: Willie Gay, 66, born in North Carolina, patient at Veterans Administration facility.
N.B.: Gay, who served 1898-99, was a veteran of the Spanish American War.
- Robert Crocker Harris
In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 1018 Wainwright Street, farmer Moses Dupree, 50; wife Henrietta, 48, nurse for private family; grandson Robert Harris, 8; and roomer Virginia Humphreys, 54, cosmetics peddler.
In 1942, Robert Crocker Harris registered for the World War II draft in Wilson. His draft card reports that he was born 6 June 1922 in Wilson County; resided at 1018 Wainwright Street; listed Henriette Dupree of that address as his contact person; and worked as a tobacco farm aide.
Robert Croker Harris died 21 June 1952 in Durham, North Carolina. Per his death certificate, he was born 6 June 1922 in Wilson County to Willie Harris and Smithie Dupree; was married; worked as an orderly at Duke Hospital; and resided at 613 Fayetteville Street. Detective W.H. Upchurch was informant. Cause of death: “Abdominal hemorrhage; two pistol shot wounds of back; shot while being arrested for disorderly conduct & resisting arrest — officer exonerated by grand jury.”
Willie Gay (1874-1940) was buried in Odd Fellows Cemetery. I posted a photo of his headstone at findagrave.com.
Wow! And he’s a Spanish American War vet! I’ve posted quite a bit about Willie Gay’s family, but did not know what had become of him. Is this actually Odd Fellows — or Rountree? I tramped around in both several times this winter, but I didn’t see this one. Thank you!
You are welcome! I had to stop by there after reading your posts on the Rountree-Odd Fellows-Vick cemeteries. I found Willie Gay’s headstone in the wooded area just to the left of the parking lot for Vick Cemetery. I didn’t have time to do much exploring. I live near Swansboro NC and was just passing through Wilson. I posted a memorial for Willie Gay on findagrave.com when I got home. I want to say thank you for the attention you have brought to these cemeteries through your writings. I hope some good can come from it.
Thank you so, so much! Not only am I thrilled to see WIllie Gay’s headstone, I’m excited that there may be even more that I missed in my forays!