To stave off responsibility for caring for poor women and their children, unwed mothers were regularly brought before justices of the peace to answer sharp questions about their circumstances.
On 1 October 1866, Martha Cooper admitted to Wilson County justice of the peace William G. Jordan that she had fourteen month-old and two month-old children whose father was Albert Freeman. Jordan ordered that Freeman be arrested and taken to a justice to answer Cooper’s charge.
I have not been able to identify either Cooper or Freeman.
Bastardy Bonds, 1866, Miscellaneous Records, Wilson County Records, North Carolina State Archives.