We first met entertainer Isaiah Prophet Thorne via passport applications, here. In 1941, Thorne wrote the Daily Times, asking for help locating his family.
Wilson Daily Times, 24 June 1942.
Isaiah Thorne’s family appears in the 1870 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Preston Thorne, 23; wife Julia, 22; William, 3, James, 1, Charity, 5 months, and Alice, 10; and John Bullock, 18.
In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Pettigrew Street, farmer Preston Thorne, 37; wife Edney, 36; and children William, 13, Eugene, 11, Hattie, 6, and Annie, 4.
On 12 March 1890, Hattie Thorne, 17, daughter of Preston and Edney Thorne, married Willis Grissom, 21, son of Willis and Carry Grissom, in Wilson.
Isaiah Thorne’s sister, Hattie Grissom Henry, died 21 November 1930 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born in Wilson County to Preston Thorn of Edgecombe County and Eddie Adams of Greene County; lived at 203 Vick Street; was a widow; and worked in nursing. Lydia Grissom was informant.
I have not found anything else about Thorne’s family, including anything about his father and brothers in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.
What an incredible story!
Isn’t it?? Finding Isaiah Thorne’s photo has been a highlight of my research. What stories he could have told!