barber

Snaps, no. 21: Charles William Hagans.

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Charles Hagans

Charles William Hagans (1883-1949), son of Lawrence and Mary Etta Pender Hagans.

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In the 1900 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Larnce Haggan, 49, wife Etha, 44, and children Joe, 21, Augustus, 19, Oscar, 18, Charlie, 16, Annie, 13, Connie, 10, Lena, 8, Mollie, 7, William L., 4, Minnie, 3, and Pattie, 1, and Lawrence’s widowed mother Alice Hagans, 70.

In the 1920 census of Beaver Falls, Beaver County, Pennsylvania: at 1315 Seventh Avenue, Charles Hagen, 35, self-employed barber; wife Gertrude, 36; lodger London Broady, 32, barber; and nephew Raymond Hartzell, 30, garage mechanic. Charles was born in North Carolina; Gertrude and Raymond in Ohio; and London in Virginia.

Report to the 1920 census notwithstanding, C. William Hagans and Amanda G. Nichols were not married until 25 January 1921, when they wed in Summit County. Ohio. Per their marriage license, Hagans was born 9 April 1884 in Wilson County, N.C., to Lawrence Hagans and Mary Gray; worked as a barber; and lived at 28 Arch Street, Barberton, Ohio. Amanda G. Nichols was born 23 November 1883 in Chillicothe, Ohio, to Robert R. Hackley and Julia Adams, and had been married once before.

In 1921, Gertrude Hagans purchased an ad in The Tiger, the Beaver Falls High School yearbook:

On 1 July 1927, Charles W. Hagans was sentenced to serve one year in the Allegheny County Workhouse on a conviction for unspecified liquor law violations. A register shows that he reported 7 July 1927; was 43 years old; was born in North Carolina; was of medium complexion with black hair and brown eyes; was 5’8″, weighed 160 pounds at entry at 174 at release; was a barber (and worked as same while incarcerated); and was a Methodist. He was released early — on 30 April 1928.

In the 1930 census of Battle Creek, Calhoun County, Michigan: at 148 Roseneath, rented for $35/month, barber Charles W. Hagans, 45, born in North Carolina; wife Gertrude M., 46, born in Ohio; and lodgers John Young, 30, drugstore porter, born in Pennsylvania; and Harry Godbolt, 46, barber, born in South Carolina.

In the 1940 census of Battle Creek, Calhoun County, Michigan:  at 101 Glenurban Avenue, barber Charles W. Hagans, 56, born in North Carolina; wife Gertrude, 56, born in Ohio; and lodgers Taswell Buckner, 50, insect and rodent exterminator, born in Alabama, and Harry Godbolt, 55, laborer on city streets, born in South Carolina.

In 1942, Charles William Hagans registered for the World War II draft in Calhoun County, Michigan. Per his registration card, he was born 9 April 1884 in Wilson County, North Carolina; resided at 36 North Wood, Battle Creek, Calhoun County; and his contact and employer was George Anderson, 56 1/2 Capital S.W., Battle Creek.

Charles W. Hagans died 11 November 1943 in Battle Creek, Calhoun County, Michigan. Per his death certificate, he was born 9 April 1884 in Wilson, North Carolina, to Lawrence W. Hagans.

Gertrude Marie Hagans died 5 October 1948 in Battle Creek. Per her death certificate, she was born 1891 in Chillicithe, Ohio, to James Hockley.

Charles and Gertrude Hagans are buried in Rest Haven cemetery, Wilson.

Photos courtesy of Ancestry.com user TeiaHarper1; U.S. School Yearbooks, 1900-1990, database on-line at Ancestry.com; Allegheny County Workhouse, Pennsylvania Prison, Reformatory and Workhouse Records, 1829-1971, database on-line at Ancestry.com.

Studio shots, no. 22: Willie G. Reid Sr.

Willie G. Reid, circa 1920, with what appears to be the one-armed chair.

Willie G. Reid (1903-1963), son of William and Elizabeth Wilson Reid, was one of several members of a large Wayne County who made their way to Wilson. Brothers J.D. and Elijah Reid were his father’s first cousins, and Allen T. Reid, his nephew.

In the 1910 census of Nahunta township, Wayne County: farmer William Reid, 59; wife Bettie, 54; and children Hattie, 23, Milton, 19, Iantha, 16, Council, 15, Vestus, 13, Loumisa, 11, Ghorom, 8, and Madie, 5.

In the 1920 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: tenant farmer William Reid, 63; wife Bettie, 52; and children Iantha M., 25, Council, 23, Vester, 21, and his wife Hattie, 19, Gorum, 17, Mater, 14, [granddaughter?] Marain, 7, and [grandson?] Melab, 15 months.

In the 1930 census of Black Creek, Wilson County: farmer Willie Gorham [sic], 27; mother Bettie Reid, 65; niece Marion, 17; and nephew Abraham, 11.

On 30 October 1933, Gorham Reid, 30, of Greene County, son of Bill and Bettie Reid, married Ada Harriss, 25, of Wilson, daughter of Leander and Rosa Harriss. Primitive Baptist elder Paul Bunch performed the ceremony at L.H. Harriss’ in Black Creek in the presence of David Bynum, G.S. Woodard, and S.L. Woodard.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 1013 East Nash Street, Willie Reid, 36, and wife Ada, 31. Willie reported that he had been living in Fremont [Wayne County] in 1935 and owned a barber shop. Ada was a teacher at “Farmer’s School.”

Willie Gorham Reid registered for the World War II draft in Wilson County in 1942. Per his registration card, he resided at 1013 East Nash Street; was born 12 August 1903 in Wayne County; his contact person was Mary Artist, 1013 East Nash; and he was self-employed barber working on Main Street, Black Creek.

Willie Ghorum Reid died 28 February 1963 at Mercy Hospital in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 12 August 1902 in Wayne County to William Reid and Bettie Wilson; was married to Ada Reid; resided at 1013 East Nash; and was a barber at William Hines Barber Shop.

Photograph courtesy of Adventures in Faith: The Church at Prayer, Study and Service, the 100th anniversary commemorative booklet of Calvary Presbyterian Church.

Fake news (and other stories.)

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Wilson Advance, 14 October 1887.

Wilson Advance, 8 July 1897.

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On 21 November 1895, Richard Renfrow, 35, son of Julia Gay, married Victoria Knight, 28, daughter of Harriet Knight. Baptist minister W.T.H. Woodward performed the service, and Levi Jones, H.T. Ransom and Maggie Ransom witnessed.

In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: barber Richard Renfrow, 38; wife Victora, 35; her widowed mother Harriet Knight, 61; and Harriet’s grandchildren Hattie, 16, Andrew, 17, barber, and Alis, 12.

In the 1901 Hill’s Directory of Norfolk, Portsmouth and Berkley, Virginia: Renfrow Richard barber 311 Queen.

In the 1908 Hill’s Directory of Wilson, N.C.: Renfrow Richard barber 544 E Nash.

In the 1914 Hill’s Directory of Norfolk and Portsmouth, Virginia: Renfrow Richard barber 417 E Bute.

On 26 December 1916, Richard Renfrow, 50, married Matilda Taylor, 50, in Wilson. Hood Phillips applied for the license, and Missionary Baptist minister A.L.E. Weeks performed the ceremony in the presence of Boston Griffin, J.E. Farmer and Henry Lucas.

Matilda Renfrow died 2 June 1918 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was about 50 years old; was married; and worked as a cook. Informant was Richard Renfrow, 900 Queen Street, Norfolk.

In the 1923 Hill’s Directory of Norfolk and Portsmouth, Virginia: Renfrow Richard barber 628 E Charlotte.

 

Roderick “Mike” Taylor, Sr.

Wilson Daily Times, 5 August 1947.

In the 1900 census, Wilson, Wilson County: Mike Taylor, 36, a drayman; wife Rachel, 36; and children Roderick, 17, Maggie, 14, Mattie, 13, Maddie, 12, Bertha E., 8, and Hennie G., 6.  Rachel and daughters Maggie, Mattie and Maddie were occupied at washing.  Roderick and the youngest girls “go to school.”

On 16 May 1906, W.T. Taylor applied to the Wilson County Register of Deeds for a marriage license for Roddrick Taylor of Wilson, 23, son of Mike Taylor and Rachel Taylor, both living, and Mary J. Pender of Wilson, 18. Fred M. Davis, Baptist Minister, performed the ceremony the same day at Mike Taylor’s in Wilson, with witnesses W.T. Taylor and Addie Rauls.

In the 1912-13 Wilson NC city directory, there is this listing: Taylor Roderick barber Paragon Shaving Parlor h 114 W Lee.

In the 1916-17 Wilson NC city directory, there is this listing: Mount Hebron Lodge #42, Roderick Taylor SW. Also, Taylor Roderick barber h 611 E Green.

Roderick Taylor registered for the World War I draft in Wilson. Per his registration card, he resided at 611 Green Street and worked as a barber for Tate & Hines, Nash Street. His nearest relative was Mary J. Taylor, and he was described as tall and slender, with dark eyes and black hair.

On 5 July 1923, H.A. [Hiram Abiff] Faulk filed a deed for sale of land to Roddrick Taylor and wife Mary J. Taylor, for $10 and valuable consideration, a house and lot on the north side of East Green Street and known as No. 607 (old city No. 608) E. Green, lot measuring 70′ x 120′.  The lot was bordered on either side by the properties of William Hargrave and Walter Hines.

Taylor briefly owned his own barbershop with a partner. In the 1925 Wilson city directory: Taylor Roderick (Coley & T) h 610 E Green, and Coley & Taylor (DH Coley, Roderick Taylor) barbers 105 S. Goldsboro

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County:  at 610 East Green Street (rented for $20/month), Roderick Taylor, 45, barber, with wife Mary J., 39, and children Edna G., 8, Mary J., 4, and Roderick Jr., 1.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 607 East Green Street, barber Roderick Taylor, 58; wife Mary J., 50; and children Edna G., 18, a college bookstore clerk, Mary J., 14, and Roderick Jr., 12.

Roderick Taylor Sr. died 4 August 1947 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 16 March 1882 in Wilson to Henry Taylor and Rachel Barnes and worked as a barber.  Informant was Mary J. Taylor, 607 East Green St., City.

Sidney S. Boatwright, “dean of local barbers.”

Wilson Daily Times, 19 January 1950.

Wilson Daily Times, 18 March 1977.

In the 1910 census of Legett, Marion County, South Carolina: laborer Joe Williams, 19; wife Dina, 39; and step-children Lillie, 17, Lida, 14, Sherwood, 9, and Mizoula Boatright, 7.

On 5 June 1917, Sid Boatwright registered for the World War I draft in Wilson. Per his registration card, he was born 16 June 1896 in Mullins, South Carolina; lived on Green Street; worked for Mrs. J.C. Williams as a hotel porter; and supported his mother and sister.

In the 1920 Wilson city directory, Sidney Boatwright is listed as a factory hand residing at 123 Pender Street.

In the 1925 Wilson city directory, Sidney Boatwright is listed as a barber residing on May Street near the city limits.

In the 1928 Wilson city directory, Sidney Boatwright is listed as a barber for W.S. Hines residing at 1001 Lincoln Street.

In the 1930 Wilson city directory, Sidney Boatwright is listed as a barber for Walter S. Hines residing at 418 North Vick Street.

In 1942, Sidney Sherwood Boatwright registered for the World War II draft in Wilson. Per his registration card, he was born 16 June 1900 in Mullins, South Carolina; resided at 722 East Green Street; worked as a barber at Walter Hines Barber Ship, 208 East Nash Street; and his nearest relative was Mrs. Sidney Sherwood Boatwright. He was described as 5’10 1/2″, 200 pounds.

Sidney Boatwright died 16 March 1977 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 16 June 1900 in South Carolina to Sherwood Boatwright and Dinah (last name unknown); worked as a barber; resided at 722 East Green; and was married to Johnnie Kornegy Boatwright.

 

William Hines, making good.

In March 1913, the Indianapolis Recorder, a nationally focused African-American newspaper, ran a front-page feature on William Hines, a “native of [Wilson] and a forceful character for the intellectual, moral, spiritual, social and economic development of young North Carolinians.”

Citing Samuel H. Vick and Biddle University as Hines’ influences, the article detailed his entry into the real estate business after establishing a successful barber shop. In just five years, Hines had accumulated 11 houses and “a number of very desirable lots.”

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Indianapolis Recorder, 1 March 1913.

Hines’ real estate investments eventually made him one of the largest builder-owners of rental property in east Wilson. His barber shop operated for many decades, and his varied civic involvement included work as leader in the World War I Liberty Loan Campaign, charter investor in the Commercial Bank of Wilson, founding member of the Men’s Civic Clubboard of trustees of the Negro Library, board of directors of the Reid Street Community Center, and administrator of Mercy Hospital.

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William Hines, a little later in life.

William Hines was born 29 October 1883 in Edgecombe County and died 17 October 1981 in Wilson. He is buried in Rest Haven cemetery.

Photo of Hines courtesy of History of Wilson County, North Carolina (1985).

John Gaston: easy chairs, razors keen.

Barbers ranked high among black Wilson’s most prominent residents in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Lemon Taborn, who was later joined by his wife Edmonia and daughter Carrie, was the earliest of the well-known Wilson barbers, whose clientele was exclusively white. Others in the late 1800s included Alfred Robinson, J.F. WhiteEd Mitchell, Tobias Farmer, and John A. Gaston.

In the 1870 census of Kinston, Lenoir County, North Carolina: brickmason George Gaston, 53, wife Matilda, 30, and 13 year-old sons George and John, both farm laborers.

In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: brickmason George Gaston, 60, wife Matilda, 44, and son John, 23, a farm laborer. John’s twin George Gaston, 23, barber, is listed by himself in the 1880 census of Town of Toisnot, Wilson County. George established perhaps the leading barber shop in Elm City, seven miles north of Wilson.

On 18 September 1884, J.A. Gaston, 25, married Eller Clark, 17, in Wilson. Witnesses were Samuel H. Vick, C.D Howard and Braswell R. Winstead.

When Alfred Robinson left Wilson in 1889 for his patronage postal route job, J.F. White took over his business. White did not stay long though, and by the end of the year, John Gaston and Hugh T. Ransom were advertising their partnership at the location. (City directories show that Ransom was a barber in Raleigh in 1887. He married Maggie Joyner in Wilson on Christmas Day 1889, and their marriage license notes that his parents lived in Wake County. Ransom was alive as late as 1897, when his son Hugh T. Ransom Jr. was born, but died before 1900.)

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Wilson Advance, 2 January 1890.

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Wilson Advance, 10 July 1890.

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Wilson Advance, 4 June 1891.

Gaston and Ransom seem to have parted ways shortly, and in August 1891 a local newspaper noted the addition of Ed Mitchell to the shop.

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Wilson Advance, 27 August 1891.

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Wilson Advance, 14 January 1892.

Gaston continued to expand his business.

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Wilson Advance, 17 November 1892.

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Wilson Advance, 26 January 1893.

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Wilson Advance, 22 February 1894.

Though he received a fair amount of free publicity via news briefs such as those above, Gaston was a big believer in advertising, and placed hundreds of ads in the Wilson Advance. Here, he touted two additional barbers, including one that he trained. (I have not found any other reference to Lyde (Clyde?) Richardson. Noah J. Tate, curiously, is referred to as “Pate” in this and another newspaper reference, but Tate in all others. The son of Hardy and Mary Jane Tate, he and Walter Hines entered a partnership circa 1910.

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Wilson Mirror, 31 October 1894.

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Wilson Advance, 2 May 1895.

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Wilson Advance, 2 April 1896.

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Wilson Advance, 8 April 1897.

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Wilson Advance, 24 March 1898.

John A. Gaston, 44, son of George Gaston, and Sattena Barnes, 22, daughter of Doublin and Eliza Barnes, were married 9 November 1899 at the bride’s residence in Wilson. Braswell R. Winstead obtained the license; Rev. S.B. Hunter performed the ceremony at the A.M.E. Zion church; and Grant T. Foster (husband of Hugh T. Ransom’s widow Maggie), B.R. Winstead, and Samuel H. Vick were witnesses.

In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: barber John Gaston, 44, wife Satina, 30, and children Theodore, 13, Cicero, 10, George, 8, and Caroline, 2 months.

In the 1910 census of Warsaw, Duplin County: widower John Gaston, 53, barber, and son Ciseroe, 24, pressing club operator.

In 1911, a bit of unfinished business — likely related to his deceased wife’s estate — brought Gaston back to Wilson County:

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Wilson Daily Times, 10 January 1911.

In the 1920 census of Warsaw, Duplin County: on Bell Street, widower John Gaston, 63, barber, and son Theodore, 33, also a barber.

On 4 November 1930, John A. Gaston died in Warsaw, Duplin County. Per his death certificate, he was born about 1858 in Duplin County to George Gaston and an unnamed mother and was the widower of Satina Barnes Gaston. Cause of death: “Don’t know. Sudden death while about his work as barber. No doctor had examined him.” Theo. Gaston of Warsaw was informant.

 

The popular (and peripatetic) Ed Mitchell.

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Wilson Mirror, 18 January 1888.

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Wilson Mirror, 7 May 1890.

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Wilson Mirror, 30 July 1890.

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Wilson Mirror, 25 February 1891.

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Wilson Mirror, 20 May 1891.

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Wilson Advance, 27 August 1891.

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Wilson Advance, 14 January 1892.

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Wilson Advance, 13 April 1893.

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Democratic Banner (Dunn, N.C.), 31 December 1902.

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Wilson Daily Times, 21 October 1910.

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In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Spring Street, washerwoman Susan Mitchell, 47, with children Lucy, 19, and Louiza, 15, both house servants, Eddy, 12, and Joseph, 9. On 18 October 1880, Lucy Mitchell, 19, married Mashal Powell, 18, at Susan Mitchell’s house. Witnesses were Small Blunt, Mary Blunt and Susan Mitchell.

In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: widow Susiana Mitchel, 65, a “grannie,” and son Edd, 33, a barber. [A granny-woman was a midwife.]

In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Susan Mitchell, 75, lived alone in a rented house on the N&S Railroad. In the 1910 census of Averasboro, Harnett County: on Wilmington & Magnolia Road, barber Edward Mitchell, 44, wife Allice M., 24, and daughter Loucile D., 6 months.

Edward Mitchell died 5 February 1918 in Dunn, Harnett County, North Carolina. Per his death certificate, he was born in Wilson to Ed and Susan Mitchell, was married, and worked as a barber. He was buried in Dunn.

In the 1920 census of Averasboro, Harnett County: at 311 Magnolia Avenue, widow Alice Mitchell, 33, with daughters Glydis, 10, and Doris, 9.

House fires and lightning strikes.

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Wilson Mirror, 23 August 1893.

In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: mechanic Charley Barber, 41; sons Luther, 12, James, 7, John, 7, and Hubert, 5; sister Mary Tomlingson, 42, a cook, and her children Ella, 9, and Charley, 4; and boarders Turner Utley, 27, John Purkison, 31, and George Garret, 25. [Charley was described as married, but his wife is not listed. She was teacher Sallie Barber.]

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Wilson Daily Times, 23 June 1911.

In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: merchant Lee Moore, 36, wife Louisa, 32, and son Ernest, 12.