Children

Her love drew her back.

I have written here and here of the children of Jonathan and Margaret Dew Artis, who migrated from Wilson County to Putnam County, Indiana, in the 1870s. The Artis family seems to have followed family there, as a sad newspaper story reveals Margaret’s cousin Esther Due in Indiana, too.

Esther Due was born about 1879 in Wilson County, North Carolina, to Edwin Due [Dew] and Adaline Barefoot (or Deans) Due. The family migrated to Indiana when Esther was an infant. On 2 July 1898, Esther gave birth in Putnam County to a son Raymond Due, whose father was white.

The boy was placed with an African-American foster family, who sought to adopt him.

Greencastle Banner, 28 April 1899.

They appear in the 1900 census of Greencastle, Putnam County, Indiana: Virginia-born gardener John T. Fox, 32; wife Luella, 31; and son Raymond F. Fox, 1.

Things did not go well though. In December 1899, newspapers ran articles with varying details, but telling one essential story — Esther Due had taken her son from the Foxes and gone to Indianapolis. They lodged briefly with her cousin Margaret Artis, but were not allowed to stay. Due then entered a rescue mission for unwed women, Door of Hope.

Indianapolis’ Door of Hope Mission. Undated photo courtesy of IUPUI University Library.

Seemingly dissatisfied with her situation at the mission, and unable otherwise to care for the boy, Due left him in a stranger’s front yard.

Indianapolis Sun, 22 December 1900.

Indianapolis Journal, 22 December 1900.

Greencastle Star Press, 29 December 1900.

I have found nothing further about Raymond Due, alias Fox. His mother died 10 November 1904 in Putnam County, Indiana. Per her death certificate, she was born 26 April 1879 in North Carolina to Edward Due and Ida Barefoot; was single; worked as a domestic; and was buried in Brick Chapel cemetery.

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In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: domestic servant Lucy Sanders, 45; farm laborers Ollen Womble, 19, Edwin Due, 15, and Tony Rountree, 23; and farm laborer Seth Deems, 22, (his wife?) Eliza, 20, and Dinah, 2.

Edwin Dew, 23, and Adaline Deans, 19, were married 10 September 1876 at Virgil Deans’ in Wilson County.

In the 1880 census of Jefferson township, Putnam County, Indiana: Edward Dew, 25, works on farm; wife Adaline, 20; and children James A., 2, and Easter A., 1.

In the 1900 census of Edwin Due, 48; wife Addie, 39; and children Arthur, 22, Easter, 21, Edwin Jr., 17, Ida A., 16, Lizza, 14, Mary E., 12, Edith, 11, John, 9, Joseph, 7, Eva, 4, and Marshal, 1. Addie reported 12 of 14 children living. The first two listed here were born in North Carolina; the remaining in Indiana.

Adeline Due died 2 November 1902 in Monroe township, Putnam County, Indiana. Per her death certificate, she was born 1 July 1860 in North Carolina to Nicodemus Taylor and Anna Barefoot and was married to Ed Due. She was buried in Brick Chapel cemetery.

In the 1910 census of : Edwin Due, 56, farmer; wife Tena, 55; children Johnnie, 18, Joseph, 16, Eva, 13, Marshal, 12, and Lorenzo, 10; and mother-in-law Olive Howell, 82.

Per his headstone in Brick Chapel cemetery, Edwin Due died in 1921.

 

The death of Hattie Rodgers, 13.

Wilson Daily Times, 6 July 1916.

Thirteen year-old Hattie Rodgers was pregnant. The newspaper reported speculation that her death was a suicide resulting from her family’s response to her condition.

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In the 1910 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: tenant farmer Berry Rodgers, 35; wife Florence, 23; and children Bessie, 10, Hattie, 7, Eula, 4, Nora, 2, and Nannie B., 11.

I have not found Hattie Rodgers’ death certificate.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

Nothing compares to the loss.

Wilson Daily Times, 10 March 1923.

Incredibly, Augusta Walker dropped by the Daily Times office a few days after her infant son Leroy Wanamaker was burned to death in a house fire. She wanted to explain the circumstances of the tragedy.

Per his death certificate, Leroy was six months old; was born in Wilson County to James Wanamaker of South Carolina and Augusta Walker of Durham, N.C.; and died in Saratoga township, Wilson County.

No other trace of Augusta Walker is readily found in Wilson County records. She may have only recently arrived when she gave birth in Wilson County and may have had no family with which to leave her son while she worked. 

McGowan punished — “a move in the right direction.”

Wilson Advance, 26 August 1881.

It’s not clear what crime Nathan McGowan committed by “hurting a white boy,” but he was both fined and “severely flogged” for it.

McGowan, son of Tilghman and Charity McGowan, migrated to Indianapolis, Indiana, in the 1890s.

1324 Carolina Street.

The one hundred thirty-first in a series of posts highlighting buildings in East Wilson Historic District, a national historic district located in Wilson, North Carolina. As originally approved, the district encompasses 858 contributing buildings and two contributing structures in a historically African-American section of Wilson. (A significant number have since been lost.) The district was developed between about 1890 to 1940 and includes notable examples of Queen Anne, Bungalow/American Craftsman, and Shotgun-style architecture. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.

In this grainy Polaroid, me in front of my friends’ house at 1324 Carolina, circa 1973.

As described in the nomination form for the East Wilson Historic District: “ca. 1917; 1 story; shotgun with shed-roofed porch and gable returns; Masonite veneer.” 1324 is one of a row of endway houses on the south side of Carolina between Wainwright and Powell Streets. Shifts in the numbering of houses in this block make it difficult to trace its first few decades of inhabitants.

Per the 15 October 1971 Wilson Daily Times, Wilson’s city council ordered the demolition of 1324 as “unsafe and dangerous to life and property.” Its owner, Luther Jones, agreed to repair the house, and city council revoked the order in 1974. The house still stands.

African golf.

Wilson Daily Times, 8 September 1920.

“African golf”??

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  • Charlie Neal — probably, in the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Stantonsburg Road, cook Effie Battle, 64, widow, and grandchildren Ida Parrs, 17, tobacco factory laborer, Hattie May Marlow, 16, cook, and Charles Neal, 14, high school student.
  • Richard Wheeler — in the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: college cook Lula Wheeler, 49, widow, and children Richard, 12, Emma, 10, John, 8, and Sammie, 6.
  • Walter Powell — in the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 210 Hackney Street, Julia Powell, 50, “wash”; husband Walter, 40, farm laborer; and lodger Mary Griffin, 25, factory laborer.
  • Mary Griffin — see above.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.