Women

Barbara Jones’ daughter Bethany Jones.

In January 1828, Barbara Jones of Wayne County “in consideration of the natural love and affection which I do bear towards my daughter” transferred to Bethany Jones 100 acres in Nash County bounded by the lands of Jethro Harrison on the north and east, Cuzzy [Keziah] Williamson on the south, and John Grice on the west (minus two acres sold to Mary Hobbs).

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Deed book 12, page 190, Nash County Register of Deeds Office, Nashville, N.C.

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I have long identified Bethana Jones as a the matriarch of a large free family of color rooted in what is now southwestern Wilson County. However, if this is the same Bethana Jones, this astounding document advances the Jones family genealogy back a generation to Bethana Jones’ mother, Barbara Jones.

The evidence is limited, but suggestive. The time period is correct. Most critically, the named neighbors place Barbara and Bethana Jones’ land in Old Field township in the neighborhood in which Bethana Jones was known to live. Jethro Harrison’s son and grandson were among the men and women who purchased items from Bethana Jones’ 1852 estate sale. Keziah Williamson was likely a close relative of Isaac Williamson, who had a daughter named Keziah and also showed up at Jones’ estate sale. (It seems less likely that this was a reference to Kesiah Williamson, wife of Thomas Williamson, as ownership of property in a married woman’s own name during her husband’s lifetime would have been unusual.)

Barbary Jones appears in a 1782 tax list of Nash County, but no census records, which was not unusual for free women of color. The earliest certain reference to Bethany Jones (other than this deed) is in the 1830 census of Eatmon’s district, Nash County, North Carolina, in which Bethany Jones is head of a household of free people of color that included three males under age 10; one aged 10-23; and one aged 24-35; one female under 10; one aged 10-23; and two aged 36-54. (Were the latter two Bethana and her mother Barbara Jones?)

The obituary of Johnsie P. Hardy, age 99.

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Johnsie P. Hardy, 6 October 1918-20 June 2018.

“Mrs. Johnsie Pauline Hardy, age 99 of Wilson, died Wednesday, June 20, 2018 at her residence. Funeral services will be held on Saturday, June 30, 2018 at 1:00 pm at Brown Chapel FWB Church, 507 Hadley Street in Wilson, NC with Bishop Willie Thomas officiating. Burial will follow in Rest Haven Cemetery. Public viewing will be on Friday, June 29, 2018 from 3-7 p.m. at Edwards Funeral Home Chapel.

“Celebrating her memory are her loving and devoted family: George L. Hardy [Louise], Christine D. Deans [Larry], Faye D. Hardy, Vernon T. Hardy, Vicky L. Saunders [James], Gwendolyn Paulette Howard, Patricia A. Jones [Mark] and Bruce Hardy [Joyce]; two daughters-in law, Betty Hardy and Joan Hardy; and many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

“The family will assemble at her residence on Saturday, June 30, 2018 at 12 noon for the procession to the church. Direct condolences to edwardscares.com. Professional and personal services are entrusted to Edwards Funeral Home, Inc., 805 Nash Street East in Wilson, NC 27893.”

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In the 1920 census of Coleridge township, Randolph County: farmer James M. Cheek, 34; wife Donna, 36; and children Georgeanna, 9, Sarah B., 7, James H., 6, Thomas L., 4, Walter L., 2, and Jonsie P., 1.

In the 1930 census of Coleridge township, Randolph County: farmer J. Manley Cheek, 44; wife Donna, 46; and children Georgiana, 19,  Beatrice, 18, James H., 16, Thomas L., 14, Walter L., 13, Johnsie P., 11, Callie V., 9, Mahalah, 8, Celia M., 6, Gerladine, 4, Sylvinia, 2, and Margaret, 2 months.

On 1 October 1938, Pauline Cheek married Lawrence Hardy in Randolph County, North Carolina.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 209 Warren Street, rented for $7/month, Edna Hardy, 54; daughters Dina Mae, 18, and Nancy, 13; granddaughter Margaret, 1; son Lawrence, 23, bakery shop deliveryman; and Randolph County-born daughter-in-law Pauline, 21, cook.

In 1940, Lawrence Barnett Hardy registered for the World War II draft in Wilson. Per his registration card, he was born 28 April 1916 in Pitt County, North Carolina; resided at 409 South Warren; was married to Mrs. Johnson Pauline Hardy; and worked for Imperial Tobacco Company, corner of Lodge and Barnes Streets, Wilson.

Darden faculty.

The faculty of C.H. Darden High School, 1937-38:

Bottom row: Spencer J. Satchell, Juanita Pope Morrisey, Cora Miller Washington Artis, Naomi Freeman, Flora Clark Bethel, Marian Howard Miller, Margaret Edwards, Edward M. Barnes, John M. Miller Jr.

Middle row: Margaret Harris, Jane Amos Boyd, Annie Parker Dupree, Helen Delzelle Beckwith Whitted, Rosa Lee Kittrell Williams, A.A. Morrisey.

Top row: Marie Davis, Estelle Lane Shade, Ethel Alexander, Mamie Whitehead.

Photo courtesy of Freeman Round House and African American Museum.

Snaps, no. 58: Artelia Spells Buchanan.

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Artelia Spells Buchanan, at left.

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In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 619 Lincoln Street, fertilizer plant laborer James Pender, 45; wife Lillie, 29; and children Artesia, 12, Mosses, 10, Ometa, 8, Farro M., 4, and Isaac, 1.

On 11 August 1937, Artelia Spell, 19, of Wilson County, daughter of Ervin and Lillie Spell, married James Buchanan, 22, of Wilson County, son of James Luther and Annie Lee Buchanan, in Nash County. George Vick applied for the license.

In 1940, James Hardy Buchanan registered for the World War II draft in Wilson. Per his draft card, he was born 25 September 1915 in Rennent, North Carolina; his contact was Mrs. Artelia Buchanan; he resided at 1002 Wainwright Avenue, Wilson; and he worked for R.E, Quinn & Co., Goldsboro Street, Wilson.

Photo courtesy of Ancestry.com user kmiles65.

 

“I told them I wasn’t going no further east”: the life and times of Bessie Richardson.

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Wilson Daily Times, 16 October 1999.

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In the 1900 census of Fishing Creek township, Granville County: farmer Henry Richardson, 60; mother Martha, 52; son Willie, 34; son Norval, 24; daughter[-in-law] Florence, 22; daughter Maggie, 18, and granddaughter Bessie, 2.

On 26 May 1917, Bessie Richardson, 21, daughter of Norman and Florence Richardson, married Hubert Jones in Petersburg, Virginia.

William R. Bowden, age illegible, of Wilson, married Bessie T. Jones, 34, of Wilson on 15 June 1926. Oscar Reid applied for the license, and J.W. Aiken, pastor of Tabernacle Baptist Church, performed the ceremony at Willie R. Bowden’s home in the presence of Ferdinand Faison, John Sanchas and John Lee Devaughan.

In the 1928 Wilson, N.C., city directory: Bowden Wm (c; Bessie) tailor 503 Church

In the 1947, Wilson, N.C., city directory: Richardson Bessie (c) 540 E Nash.

Willie Bowden died 5 March 1960 at his home at 203 Stantonsburg Street, Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 13 November 1901 to Mary Adams; was married to Bessie Bowden; and worked as a laborer. He was buried at William Chapel cemetery, Elm City.

On 2 July 1960, James Monroe Weathers, 41, of Granada, Mississippi, married Rosa R. Lupe, 53, of Wilson, in Wilson. Catholic priest John R. Ferris performed the ceremony in the presence of Bessie Richardson, Clarence Crawford, and Inez Watson.

Bessie Richardson died 20 January 2002 in Wilson.

 

The estate of Albert Adams.

Albert Adams and Spicey Williams[on] registered their eight-year cohabitation with a Wilson County justice of the peace in 1866. Spicey Williamson Adams is almost certainly the Spicy listed in the 1859 inventory of Hardy H. Williamson’s enslaved property.

In the 1870 census of Spring Hill township, Wilson County: farmer Albert Adams, 50; wife Spicy, 37; and children Arch, 14, Arnold, 13, Frank, 7, Caroline, 5, and James, 2.

Albert Adams died near the end of 1878. W.T. Williamson was appointed administrator of his estate. Williamson estimated the value of Adams’ estate as about $400 and named his heirs as Frank Adams, Caroline Adams, Arnol Adams, James Adams, Guilford Adams, Albert Adams, an unnamed infant, and widow Spicy Adams.

For the support of Spicy Adams and their children, the court approved the transfer of property from Albert Adams’ estate, including a black mule; three head of cattle; 16 hogs; poultry; perishables like corn, fodder, bacon, potatoes and “turnups greens;” furniture; and cotton seed, totaling $378.25 in value. In January 1879, Williamson sold Adams’ cotton crop for $165.63 and paid off large debts to his bank and a mercantile firm.

Payment of debts owed to Branch, Hadly & Co., the bank that eventually became BB&T.


Payment of Adams’ account at the mercantile firm Moses Rountree & Co.

In the 1880 census of Spring Hill township, Wilson County: farmer Spicy Adams, 39, and children Frank, 19, Carline, 15,  James, 12, Calvin, 8, Albert, 6, and Dora, 1. Next door: farmer Arnol Adams, 24, and wife Sarah, 18.

On 15 September 1882, Ishmael Wilder filed for letters of administration for Spicy Adams. Wilder estimated her estimated her estate at $500 and named Arnold, Frank, Archibald, James, Calvin Busbee, Albert and Dora Adams as her heirs.

On 1 December 1883, a trio of appointed commissioners divided Albert Adams’ 173 acres among his and Spicy Adams’ heirs. Lot number one went to Arnold Adams; number two to Archibald Atkinson; number three to James Adams; number four to Calvin B. Adams; number five to Frank Adams; number six to Albert Adams Jr.; and number seven to Dora Adams.

[Ten years later, things fell apart. To be continued.]

Estate of Albert Adams, North Carolina Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

“I’m the oldest? There’s got to be others.”

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Wilson Daily Times, 6 October 1992.

Stantonsburg honors town’s oldest resident

STANTONSBURG — Stantonsburg’s oldest resident celebrated her 100th birthday Friday.

Travis Street resident Ethyl Artis made her way to the town hall Friday to meet Mayor Seth P. Hunt Jr., who proclaimed Oct. 3 Ethyl Beckton Artis Day in Stantonsburg.

Residents held a large party at the town’s community building Saturday for Ms. Artis, who has been a resident of Stantonsburg for the last 70 years. She is a member of the Turner Swamp Primitive Baptist Church.

She worked in farming and raised three children.

Ms. Artis said she was surprised to be the town’s oldest resident. “I’m the oldest? There’s got to be others,” she told Hunt.

Her grandaughter-in-law, Annie Artis, drove her to the town hall and helped her inside. Although she depended on the aid of a walker, Ethyl Artis said she still got along pretty well.

“I feel pretty good sometimes, other times I don’t,” she said. “I thank the Lord” for my health.

Ms. Artis was one of nine children born to Phebe and William Beckton. She was born in Wayne County Oct. 2, 1892.  — B.D. Pedigo

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Ethel Pearl Becton Artis was married to June Scott Artis; their children were Edgar Joel, James Broady, and Amanda Bell Artis. She passed away in 1994, just before her 102nd birthday.

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Funeral program in collection of Lisa Y. Henderson.

Lida Williamson, alias Atkinson, and her children.

As noted here, Hardy H. Williamson’s estate included a woman named “Liddy.”

I have not identified Liddy/Lida/Lydia in census records, but other documents indicate that four of the others listed in H.H. Williamson’s estate inventory — Henry, Spencer, Silvia “Silvy,” and Angeline “Angy” — were Lida’s children.

Handy Atkinson, who appears to have been the father of all four children, was enslaved by a different owner.

On 7 August 1866, Hamlet [sic] Atkinson and Lida Atkinson registered their 17-year cohabitation with a Wilson County justice of the peace.

In the 1870 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: farm laborer Handy Atkinson, 50; and children Nathan, 21, Spencer, 17, Simon, 15, Charity, 13, Sarah, 10, and John, 8.

Were these children also Lida Williamson’s? Was Spencer Atkinson the same person as Spencer Williamson? If so, where were Nathan and Charity in 1859 when H.H. Williamson’s estate was tallied?

On 16 December 1869, Randal Hinnant, son of Emsley Hinnant and Ally Hinnant, married Angaline Atkinson, daughter of Handa Atkinson and Lida Atkinson, at Handa Atkinson’s in Wilson County.

In the 1870 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: farm laborer Randal Hinnant, 22, and wife Angelina, 17.

In the 1880 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: Randall Hinnant, 33, Angeline, 26, and children J. Thomas, 10, James H., 8, Lilly Ann, 6, and Roscoe F. Hinnant, 4.

In the 1900 census of Spring Hill township, Wilson County: Randall Hinnant, 55, Angeline, 48, George W., 16, Sallie A., 14, Survayal, 5, and “hired girl” Susan Hinnant, 40.

In the 1910 census of Old Fields township: George Hinnant, 24, wife Elizabeth, 22, daughter Mary L., 1, mother Angeline, 58, and Percy Hinnant, 7.

In the 1920 census of Old Fields: George Hinnant, 35, Elizabeth, 30, Mary L., 11, James, 9, Mary Lee, 7, Martha May, 6, and Charlie T. Hinnant, 1, and mother Angeline Hinnant, 70.

Per her gravestone, Angeline Hinnant died in 1936. She is buried in New Vester cemetery.

  • Henry Williamson

On 17 February 1870, Henry Williamson, son of Hander Atkinson and Lida Williamson, married Cora Adams, daughter of Mary Adams, in Wilson County.

  • Silvia Atkinson Boykin

On 3 March 1870, Henry Boykin, son of Rear Boykin, married Silvia Atkinson, daughter of Handy Atkinson and Lida Atkinson, in Wilson County.

On 12 February 1893, Harriett Boykin, 20, daughter of Henry and Sylva Boykin, married Samuel Taylor, 26, son of Peter and Zilla Taylor, at Henry Boykin’s residence.

On 17 December 1897, James Boykin, 21, son of Henry and Silvy Boykin, married Mary Jane Kent, daughter of Ned and Liddie Kent.

In the 1910 census of Oneals township, Johnston County: farmer James Boykin, 30; wife Jane, 29; widowed mother Silva, 50; and children Grady, 10, Addie, 8, Fany, 6, Falston, 3, and Tincey, 8 months.

In the 1920 census of Micro township, Johnston County: farmer James H. Boykins, 44; wife Jane, 43; and children Grady, 19, Etta, 18, Fanny, 16, Foster, 12, Henry, 10, Jay, 9, Lillie, 6, John H., 4, and widowed mother Silver, age unknown.

James Henry Boykin died 14 May 1926 in Beulah township, Johnston County. Per his death certificate, he was 48 years old; was born in Wilson County to James H. Boykin and Silva Atkinson; was married Mary Jane Boykin; worked as a laborer at a steel plant in Pennsylvania; and was buried in the family burying ground.

In the 1930 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: Foster Boykin, 22, wife Ella, 18, and children James R., 2, and Alma, 1; sister-in-law Lily Whitley, 22; mother Silva Boykin, 81; and niece Eula M. Whitley, 3.

Sylvia Boykin died 12 January 1939 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born 12 August 1848 in Wilson County to Henry Boykin [sic; in fact, Henry was her husband] and an unknown mother; was a widow; worked as a tenant farmer; and lived at 507 Warren Street, Wilson. Informant was Addie Boykin, 507 Warren Street.

  • Spencer Williamson

Perhaps, in the 1900 census of Lower Conetoe township, Edgecombe County: farmer Spencer Williamson, 43; wife Mollie, 29; children Spencer, 6, David, 1; plus in-laws Morning, 21, Peggy, 18, and Joseph Rogers, 24.

Perhaps, in the 1910 census of Sparta township, Edgecombe County: Spencer Williamson, 56; wife Mollie, 40; and children Spencer Jr., 15, David, 11, Jessie, 8, Alexander, 5, and Mary, 4.

Spencer Williamson died 22 August 1926 in Rocky Mount, Nash County. Per his death certificate, he was 56 years old, was born in Wilson County to Handy Atkinson and an unknown mother; was married to P. Williamson; and lived at 112 North Pine Street, Rocky Mount.