Bynum

The unmistakable way to conviction.

In November 1888, Charles Bynum was tried and convicted of manslaughter in the shooting death of Henry Privett, his girlfriend’s brother.

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Wilson Mirror, 7 November 1888.

  • Charles Bynum, accused — possibly, the Charles Bynum, 15, listed with his parents Mack, 39, and Mary Bynum, 30, in the 1880 census of Wilson township, Wilson County.
  • Henry Privette, victim; Bettie Privette, his sister, allegedly Bynum’s lover; Alice Privette, his wife; Sallie Privette, his sister; Mahala Privette, his mother — In the 1870 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: farm laborer Joseph Privett, 30; wife Mahala, 27; and children Lucretia, 9, Mary, 4, Henry, 2, and Bettie J., 2 weeks; plus Penninah Locust, 2. In the 1880 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: Joe Privett, about 44; wife Mahalah, about 35; and children Polly Ann, 16, Henry, 14, Bettie, 11, Hattie, 7, and Sallie, 3; plus Penninah Jones, 14. Henry Privett, 18, son of Joe and Mahalia Privett, married Alice Howell, 20, daughter of Ransom and Burbary Howell, on 8 February 1887 at the courthouse in Wilson.
  • James Bynum, juror.
  • Henry Birney, juror.
  • Celia Cotton, witness.

Leonard Medical School students.

James Arthur Cotton appears in Leonard Medical School‘s 1888-’89 catalog with a notation that he done his collegiate studies at Saint Augustine’s College. (Perhaps he did not finish, as the Directory of Deceased American Physicians, 1804-1929 lists him as a 1897 graduate of Chicago’s Harvey Medical College.

Lincoln University graduate Charles Hudson Bynum appears in the 1892-’93 Leonard Medical School catalog.

The bullet pierced his heart.

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Wilson Daily Times, 5 August 1924.

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“Rifle shot wound in breast by drunken father”

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In the 1920 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: farmer John Bynum, 35; wife Carrie, 29; children Rosetta, 5, and John, 4; nephew and niece Isaac, 7, and Geneva Bynum, 4; niece Susan Bridges, 19; laborer Bruce Daniel, 19; and niece Sudie Ward, 15.

Killed by a bolt of lightning.

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Pittsburgh Courier, 1 August 1931.

Abraham Bynum was a newlywed. On 2 February 1931, he, 30, son of Charlie and Julia Bynum, married Carrie Beaman, 23, daughter of Dave and Sarah Beaman. Willie McLondon, a Free Will Baptist minister, performed the ceremony at 707 Suggs Street in the presence of Jack Rountree, Alice Davis and Leemoor Hannah.

Per his death certificate, Abraham Bynum died 21 July 1931, “killed accidentally by being struck by lightning during electrical storm.” He resided at 1008 Woodard Street, Wilson; was 31 years old; was married to Carrie Bynum; and worked as a day laborer at a tobacco manufacturing plant. He was born in Wilson to Charles Bynum and July Ann Davis, a Pitt County native, and J.C. Bynum of 807 Stantonsburg Street was informant.

This is the cause of the exodus.

THOMAS BYNUM.

I lived in Wilson County, North Carolina. I have a wife and eight children. It cost me one hundred and twenty-three dollars to get here. I never heard any thing about politics until I got to Indianapolis; then I was asked by a Democrat if some Republican did not go South and make fine promises to me, and did they not bring me here to vote? I told him, no, that I brought myself; I came on my own money; and that I came because I could not get any pay for my work, nor could I educate my children there; and now that I have seen the difference between the North and South I would not go back to North Carolina for anything, and I never expect to go back in life nor after death, except the buzzards carry me back. Mr. Turnbull, of Toisenot, N.C., a white Democrat, told me that I was coming out here to perish, but so far from perishing I am faring better than I ever fared before in my life. I wish to say that cases like the following is what brought about the exodus: A colored man rented a farm, for which he was to pay three bales of cotton, weighing 450 pounds each; he raised on that farm eleven bales of cotton, weighing 450 pounds each, and 25 barrels of corn, which left to the tenant eight bales of cotton, and 25 barrels of corn, pease, &c. The tenant bought nothing but a very small amount of very coarse food and clothing, using all the economy during the crop season to make no large account, thinking thereby to have something coming to him at settling day; but when settling day came the landlord had so enlarged his account as to cover everything — the eight bales of cotton, the 25 barrels of corn, pease, and all, and then said that the tenant lacked a little of paying out, although cotton sold at ten cents per pound. This and numerous other things is the cause of the exodus.

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Probably, in the 1870 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farm laborer Thomas Bynum, 32; wife Bethana, 28; and children James, 11, Oliver, 8, Mary, 6, Lavinia, 4, and “no name,” 2; and Lucy Pitt, 53. “Ages of this family are in doubt.”

In the 1880 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: merchant P.J. Turnbull, 29, and family.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Howard County, Indiana: at 1622 Guffin Street, street laborer Albert Whitley, 36; Polly, 32; children Cicero, 13, Mamie, 12, Albert, 9, Leonard, 6, and Wilber, 3; and grandfather Thomas Bynum, 65. All the adults were born in North Carolina.

Senate Report 693, Part 2, 2nd Session, 46th Congress.  Proceedings of the Select Committee of the United States Senate to Investigate the Causes of the Removal of the Negroes from the Southern States to the Northern States (1880).  U.S. Congressional Serial Set.

He knows nothing of the death of his wife.

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Wilson Daily Times, 25 October 1918.

Lucy Barnes‘ death certificate:

In the 1900 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Ransom Ruffin, 30; wife Maggie, 33; and children Claudius, 7, Floyd, 6, and Selia Ruffin, 3; plus “son-in-law” William Barnes, 17, and “daughters-in-law” Lucy, 15, and Bertha Barnes, 13. [The Barneses were Ransom Ruffin’s step-children rather than his in-laws. Allen Barnes, presumably, had died, and Ruffin was Maggie’s second husband.]

On 2 December 1903, Lucy Barnes, 21, daughter of Allen Barnes and Maggie Ruffin, married Amos Bynum, 23, son of Joe and Hagar Bynum, in Wilson County. Ransom Ruffin, R.M. Joyner and Pattie Williams were witnesses. [Why, then, was Lucy a Barnes on her death certificate?]

In the 1910 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: on Plank Road, farmer Amos Bynum, 31; wife Lucy, 25; and daughters Clyde, 8, and Penny, 4 months. [The article describes three small children. Clyde was probably the daughter who stepped in to care for her younger siblings, including Penny and a son Amos Bynum Jr. (Lucy and Amos are listed on his 1946 marriage license and his death certificate.)]

Junior missionary circle.

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Wilson Daily Times, 2 October 1943.

On 25 January 1933, Curley Bynum, 22, son of Cooper and Wen Ann Bynum, married Pearl Emanuel, 20, daughter of M.P. and Pattie Emanuel, in Wilson.

Pearl Bynum died 21 November 1949 at Mercy Hospital, Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born 5 May 1910 in South Carolina to Pertis and Pattie Emanuel; was married; lived at 102 North Pender; and worked as a domestic and clerk. Informant was Curly Bynum.

Shrewd, pugnacious, saucy, intelligent Negro gives advice.

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Wilson Advance, 11 June 1891.

  • Charles H. Darden
  • Susie Harris — Susie J. Harris, age illegible, married James J. Wilson, 23, on 5 January 1893 in Wilson. L.J. Melton, Presbyterian minister, performed the ceremony at the Baptist church in the presence of M.H. Cotton, S.H. Vick, and Edmund Pool. In the 1910 census of Wadesboro, Anson County: clergyman James J. Wilson, 43; wife Susie, 43, a schoolteacher; and children Mattie M., 13, Frank T., 11, Nannie R., 8, Charles E., 6, and Ophelia, 4. In the 1920 census of Wadesboro, Anson County: Presbyterian minister James J. Wilson, 52; wife Susie J., 52; and children Frank T., 20, Nannie R., 18, a teacher, Charles E., 16, Ophelia A., 13, and Lena, 8. Susie J. Wilson died 13 October 1925 in Wadesboro, Anson County. Per her death certificate: she was 57 years old; was born in Wilson to Jas. Harris and Nancy Hill; was married to Rev. J.J. Wilson; and worked as county superintendent for the North Carolina Board of Education. Informant was F.T. Wilson, 213 Oakwood Drive, Orange, New Jersey.
  • Charles H. Bynum

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The Messenger and Intelligencer (Wadesboro), 1 May 1919.

The John and Florence Miller Bynum family.

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James, John Edward, Florence Roberta, and Johnny L. Bynum, circa 1924.

On 15 November 1914, John Bynum, 27, of Saratoga married Florence Miller, 19, of Saratoga in Stantonsburg township. Witnesses were Ora L. Barnes, Bert B. Person, and Anna S. Whitley, all of Stantonsburg township.

On 5 June 1917, John Bynum registered for the World War I draft at Saratoga precinct, Wilson County. Per his registration card: he was born 17 June 1888; worked as a farmer for L.P. Woodard; and had a wife and child. He was tall and of medium build, with dark brown eyes and black hair.

In the 1920 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: farm laborer John Bynum, 30, wife Florance, 21, sons James, 3, and John, 7 months, and brother Walter Bynum, 24.

In the 1930 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: farmer John Bynum, 42, wife Florance, 32, and sons James, 13, Jonnie, 10, and Hollie, 5.

In the 1940 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: farmer John Bynum, 52, wife Florence, 45, and children James, 23, Johnie L., 20, Harley, 15, and Marguerite, 5, daughter-in-law Gladys, 22, and grandchildren James Jr., 2, and Geraldine, 10 months.

John Bynum died 23 June 1949 at his home at 1004 Robertson Street, Wilson. Per his death certificate: he was born 17 June 1887 in Wilson County to Abaraham Bynum and Jane Atkinson. Florence Bynum was informant.

Photograph courtesy of Ancestry.com user copl01.

Natural causes.

State of North Carolina, Wilson County }

Be it remembered that on the 28th day of July 1871 I H.W. Peele Coroner of Said County attended by a Jury of good and lawful Men (viz ) W.D. Whitehead, W.J. Harris, L.D. Tomlinson, R.S. Barnes, Wm. M. Gay, A.J. Brown, S.P. Clark, B.B. Roads, I.B. Farmer, E.S. Walton, B.S. Ward, A. Bynum col’d, by me Summoned for that purpose according to Law, after being by me duly Sworn and empanelled at the house of Bally Farmer in the County aforesaid did hold an inquest over the dead body of Ruben Farmer col. and after inquiring into the facts and circumstances of the death of the deaceased from a view of the corpse and all the testimony to be procured, the Jury find as follows, that is to Say, That the sd. Ruben Farmer came to his death from natural causes unknown to the Jury. Given under our hands and seals day and date above written /s/ L.D. Tomlinson, B.B. (X) Rhodes, B.S. Ward, Isaac B. Farmer, R.S. Barnes, Allen (X) Bynum, E.S. Walton, A.J. Brown, W.D. Whitehead, S.P. Clark, W.M. Gay, W.J. Harris.

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  • Ruben Farmer — in the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Reuben Farmer, 68, wife Nancy, 71, and probable grandson Luke, 11.
  • Allen Bynum — on 25 August 1866, Allen Bynum and Gatsey Bynum registered their 16-year cohabitation in Wilson County. In the 1870 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Allen Bynum, 30, wife Gatsey, 45, and children Adeline, 18, Ann, 16, Lucy, 12, Ethelbert, 15, Ranson, 7, and Harbert, 2.

Coroner’s Records, Miscellaneous Records, Wilson County Records, North Carolina State Archives.