Commerce

William Hines and Willie C. Reid merge barber shops.

In January 1932, William Hines announced the merger of his barber shop with Willie C. Reid‘s Wilson Barber Shop. The new business would occupy the space Reid had held at 130 South Goldsboro Street. (The address is the southernmost storefront of the Hackney Building at 124-130 South Goldsboro and is adjacent to today’s Eyes on Main Street gallery.)

Wilson Daily Times, 16 January 1932.

Hines’ former location at 113 South Tarboro was to close at the end of the month, and he announced an immediate reduction in service prices. (A Boncilla massage, by the way, involved a mud mask with Boncilla-brand “clasmic clay” and was touted to resolve wrinkles, lines, blackheads, enlarged pores, and oily skin.

Wilson Daily Times, 18 January 1932.

  • Willie C. Reid

In the 1910 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer Jesse Reid, 59; wife Sallie, 53; and children Emmar J., 27, Barnes, 24, Willie, 22, Browdy, 19, Lonely, 17, Effie, 13, and Earle, 10.

In the 1910 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer Jesse Reid, 59; wife Sallie, 53; and children Emmar J., 27, Barnes, 24, Willie, 22, Browdy, 19, Lonely, 17, Effie, 13, and Earle, 10.

In 1917, Willie C. Reid registered for the World War I draft in Duplin County, North Carolina. Per his registration card, he was born 28 April 1886 in Fremont, N.C.; lived in Warsaw, N.C.; and worked as a barber for John A. Gaston, Warsaw, N.C. [Gaston was a Wilson County native.]

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: at 407 Vick Street, widow Sallie Reid, 64; sons Willie, 30, barber, Boydie, 20, tailor, and Lonely, 25, tailor, daughter-in-law Mary, 24, schoolteacher, granddaughter Hilter, 3 months, and daughters Effie, 23, and widow Emma E., 35.

On 27 October 1920, Willie Columbus Reid, 31, of Wilson, son of Jesse and Sallie Reid, married Mary E. Galley, 25, of Wilmington, daughter of James J. and Lena E. Galley, at Saint Stephen’s A.M.E. Church in Wilmington, N.C.

In the 1922 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Reid William (c) barber The Mayflower h 304 N Vick

In the 1928 and 1930 Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory: Reid Wm C (c; Mary) barber 130 S Goldsboro h 304 N Vick

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 304 Vick, rented for $14/month, Willie C. Reid, 54, native of Fremont, N.C.; wife Mary E., 46, county school teacher and native of Wilmington, N.C.; and children William M., 16, and Helen E., 18.

Willie Columbus Reid died 26 January 1969 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 28 April 1886 to Jessie Reid and Sallie [maiden name not known]; was married to Mary E. Reid; lived at 1106 Atlantic Street; and had worked as a barber.

Clippings courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

Our staff is composed of experts; the expense is a matter of your own desire.

“In your home, you should put aside all arguments in favor of the one fact — ┬áthe trained and proficient man is the best.” — C.H. Darden & Sons.

Wilson Daily Times, 21 December 1916.

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Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

Look! The first colored fair!

Wilson Daily Times, 10 November 1920.

“It will be up-to-date in every way. Exhibits of every kind, good racing, good riders, good speaking, good shows, good midway, good free attractions, in fact, everything that it takes to make a good fair!”

  • Hon. Robert H. Terrell
  • Prof. E.J. Hayes — Edgar J. Hayes, superintendent of Wilson’s colored graded schools.
  • F.E. Edwards — Frank E. Edwards died 17 February 1931 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was 57 years old; was born in Wayne County to King and Eliza Edwards; was married to Addie Edwards; lived at 426 Spring Street; and worked as a house mover.
  • W.M. Phillips — William H. Phillips, dentist.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

718 East Green Street.

The one hundred thirty-sixth 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.

718 East Green Street, formerly numbered 649, is now an empty lot. Any buildings on the lot were demolished prior to the survey of the East Wilson Historic District. In the early 20th century, however, it was the site of a small Black-owned grocery, one of the earliest in East Wilson. City directories reveal the store’s existence, under an ever-changing series of proprietors, as early as 1908 and as late as the 1940s.

John H. Miller and John H. Lewis are the earliest identified grocers at the location in 1908.

Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory, 1908.

Four years later, the city directory shows Jacob C. Speight as the owner. He lived two houses down Green Street.

Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory, 1912.

Detail of page, Sanborn fire insurance map of Wilson, N.C., 1913.

By 1916, Selly Rogers was the operator of this grocery, as well as another on Stantonsburg Road (now Pender Street South).

Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory, 1916.

By 1922, several houses had been built around the store, and its number had changed from 649 to 718.

Detail of page, Sanborn fire insurance map of Wilson, N.C., 1922.

Grant J. Foster is listed as the owner in 1925, but within a few years he was operating a grocery on Viola Street.

Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory, 1925.

The ownership of the grocery during the 1930s is not yet known. By 1941, Green Street Grocery and Market had a white owner, however, John M. Coley.

Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory, 1941.

Sometime during or after World War II, the building at 718 ceased use as a grocery and became a residence, perhaps as a result of intense post-war housing shortages. By 1947, it was the home of photographer John H. Baker and his wife Rosalee.

Hill’s Wilson, N.C., city directory, 1947.

Wilson’s queerest market.

In a September 1940 “Wilsonia” column, John G. Thomas memorialized Saturday afternoon rummage sales carried out by white women from cars parked along Stantonsburg (now Pender) Street. Their customers? Black tobacco factory workers whose weekly pay was burning a hole in their pockets.

Wilson Daily Times, 16 September 1940.

Dispute at the cold drink stand.

Wilson Daily Times, 28 July 1911.

Johnny Matthews and Luther Barber [Barbour] were fined ten dollars each (or was it $22?) after an altercation over two bottles of Coca-Cola at Matthews’ cold drink stand on the Plank Road (roughly, Martin Luther King Parkway). State law prohibited the sale on Sunday of any goods other than “drugs, undertaking supplies, ice and those things absolutely necessary for the sick.”

Mitchell wins suit against First National Bank.

Wilson Daily Times, 23 June 1930.

In 1930, James Gray Mitchell, whose “thriftiness” netted him a prosperous farm, a bank vice-president position, and the wherewithal to donate land for a school near Elm City, sued First National Bank to recover $350 paid from his account to the bearer of a forged check. He won.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

The goose grease man.

Wilson Daily Times, 10 October 1914.

George Flack, the “goose grease man,” drove geese throughout the sales territory of the Goose Grease Company, hawking Mother’s Joy Croup and Pneumonia Salve. In 1914, he arrived in Wilson for a thirty-day stay with the W.H. Woodard & Company. In relaying Goose Grease Company’s history, the Daily Times listed Flack, two geese, and five hundred dollars as the company’s starting assets.

Wilson Daily Times, 1 October 1919.

1914 clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.