Black businesses, 1908, no. 1: South Goldsboro and East Nash Streets.

Page 4, Sanborn fire insurance map, Wilson, N.C. (1908).

Cross-referencing the 1908 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory and the 1908 Sanborn fire insurance map of Wilson reveals the specific locations of Black-owned businesses just after the turn of the century. Above, the intersection of South Goldsboro and East Nash Streets.

Moses Brandon operated an eating house at 127 South Goldsboro Street. (Within a few years, he moved to 411 East Nash Street.)

John H. Aiken and Braswell R. Winstead ran livery stables at 125 and 129 South Goldsboro. The map does not make clear how the space was divided between the two. Aiken was a long-time stablekeeper, but Winstead is a surprise. He was a teacher, then an assistant postmaster to Samuel H. Vick, then a barber.

Short W. Barnes was a carpenter by trade, and his ownership of a South Goldsboro Street barbershop is a surprise.

Annie Best‘s eating house at 121 South Goldsboro was just a few blocks from her home at 313 South Spring. 

Physician Frank S. Hargrave founded Ideal Pharmacy and brought in D’Arcey C. Yancey to staff it. Yancey took over as sole proprietor around 1910. 

Wilson Times, 11 November 1910.

Tate & Hines Barbershop, a partnership of Noah J. Tate and Walter S. Hines, operated in a storefront underneath the New Briggs Hotel at 213 East Nash Street. (The hotel’s footprint is now the site of the new Wilson Arts Center.) The business began as Paragon Shaving Parlor in 1903 with a third partner, Joshua Tabron. See here a note for Tate & Hines’ purchase of a new cash register in 1910.

A barber pole is visible curbside in this postcard depicting New Briggs Hotel circa 1900. Tate & Hines occupied the first storefront on the left.

In the interior of the block, circled in red, a narrow freestanding rectangle of a building labeled “servants.” There were few white servants in Wilson in this era, so the reference is surely to African-American workers, but whose servants? What kind of servants? And what did they do in this space?

Postcard image courtesy of Penny Postcard Archives, a USGenWeb Archives site.



  1. This might be a really good feature for the WCHA Newsletter. Would you mind if I used it, with credit given for your hard work, of course!

    B. Perry Morrison, Jr. Attorney and DRC-Certified Mediator (Superior Court) Morrison Law Firm, P.L.L.C. P.O. Box 2046 3713 Nash Street North, Ste. 101 Wilson, NC 27894-2046 (252) 243-1003 (252)243-1004 (fax)

    This email, and any attachments thereto, is intended only for use by the addressee(s) named herein and may contain legally privileged and/or confidential information. If you are not the intended recipient of this email, you are hereby notified that any dissemination, distribution or copying of this email, and any attachments thereto, is strictly prohibited. If you have received this email in error, please notify me immediately and permanently delete the original and any copy of this email and discard any printout thereof.

  2. Just following up to see if you will give permission for your work on black-owned businesses to be featured in our newsletter.

    B. Perry Morrison, Jr.


    Wilson County Historical Association

    P.O. Box 2046

    Wilson, NC 27894


    252-243-1004 (fax)

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