centenarian

Wilson has lost an icon.

This morning’s announcement from Wilson’s Sallie B. Howard School for the Arts and Education:

Our beloved, Sallie Baldwin Townsend Howard, passed away at 2:50am this morning, September 25, 2018. She was 102 years old and wanted everyone to know that “she was ready”. We miss her already but her life and her legacy remains with us, enshrined in the work we do for children for generations to come. Concerning her passing from this earth, this is what she had to say…

“When I lay me down to die
Have bade farewell this beauteous world
Of valleys green and oceans swirl
Of fragrant blossoms and birds that sing
Of happy voices with childlike ring
Of ecstasy from lovers kiss
Though evermore I’m done with this
And my journey through eternity
To the dawn of nothing be…
I shall begin it cheerfully
If little children let shed a tear
To express the love they bear
And weep my passing from this earth
Because til death, yea from birth
For truth and goodness I have striven
Because of kindness I have given
If they should weep to have me stay
Because I’ve lighted up their way
Then happy upon my couch I’ll lie
When I lay me down to die.”

Sallie B. Howard, 1948

The obituary of Mary Mercer Williams Bullock, 104.

Mrs. Mary M. Mercer Bullock, 104, of 1712 Westwood Avenue, Wilson, NC, passed away on January 4, 2017 at Wilson Medical Center.

The funeral service is scheduled for Wednesday, January, 11, 2017 at 12:00 noon at Contending For The Faith Church Ministries, 1006 Academy Street, Wilson, NC.  Elder Johnny Stevenson will deliver the message and burial will follow in Rest Haven Cemetery, Lane Street Ext., Wilson, NC.

A public viewing is scheduled for Tuesday, January 10, 2017 from 2:00 pm until 7:00 pm at Stevens Funeral Home, 1820 Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway, Wilson, NC with the family present for an inspirational wake service from 6:00 pm until 7::00 pm.

Mrs. Bullock was preceded in death by her first husband and the father of her children, Samuel Williams.  Later, after Mr. Williams passed, she married Gurney Bullock who also passed prior to her death.  In addition, she was preceded in death by her parents, Dempsey Mercer and Mattie Knight Mercer; two sons, Samuel Williams, Jr. and Charlie Williams; one daughter, Elnora W. Williams Green; five brothers, Robert Mercer, Charles Mercer, Will Mercer, James Mercer and Walter Lee Mercer; and one sister, Cornelia Barnes.

She leaves cherished memories to: four daughters, Daisy Credle (Hubert) of Bayboro, NC, Cleo Applewhite (June) of Wilson, NC, Lugene Williams of the home and Mattie King of New York, NY; 22 grandchildren; 55 great grandchildren; 43 great great grandchildren;  and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.

Arrangements are Stevens Funeral Home, 1820 Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway, Wilson, NC.

——

In the 1920 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer Dempsy Mercer, 40, widower, and children Charley, 17, William, 15, Robert, 10, Walter, 9, and Maggie, 8; and sister-in-law Maggie Hines, 26, and her children Lula, 8, Silvy, 7, and James, 4.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 527 Lodge Street, Louise B. Johnson, 34; Samuel Williams, 34; wife Mary, 28; and children Samuel Jr., 11, Daisey Lee, 6, Cleo, 5, Charlie Lee, 2, and Eugenia, 9 months. Johnson and Samuel and Mary Samuel Williams worked in a tobacco redrying factory.

Samuel Williams died 5 June 1949 at Mercy Hospital in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 23 December 1904 in Wilson County to Bill Williams and Rachel Andrews; was a farmer; resided at Route 3, Elm City; and was buried in Rountree Cemetery. Mary Williams was informant.

Gurney Bullock, 48, son of Ed and Lula Thomas Bullock, married Mary Mercer Williams, 38, daughter of Demp and Mattie Knight Mercer, on 30 December 1950 in Wilson.

Photo courtesy of Ancestry.com user credler2.

Studio shots, no. 88: Jack Armstrong, supercentenarian.

Among the dozens of families who migrated up to Wilson County from North Carolina’s southern Sandhills area were those of Dock Roberson and Margaret Armstrong McDougal Blue. After her husband Levi Blue died in Wilson County in 1919, Maggie Blue and Dock Roberson married, and Maggie’s parents John “Jack” and Annie Murphy Armstrong briefly came to live with their blended family in Taylors township. Likely during this time, Jack Armstrong traveled into Wilson to sit for a portrait in Picture-Taking George W. Barnes‘ studio. Jack’s descendants explained that his curled fingers were the result of an injury inflicted during slavery.

John “Jack” Armstrong (ca. 1820-1932), circa 1920.

——

In the 1870 census of Flea Hill township, Cumberland County, North Carolina: farm laborer John Armstrong, 40; wife Anna, 38; and children Dublin, 14, Charles, 9, Penny, 8, Margrett, 7, Elizabeth, 5, Barbry, 4, William, 3, and David, 2; plus Amy Armstrong, 52.

In the 1880 census of Flea Hill township, Cumberland County, North Carolina: farmer John Armstrong, 54; wife Annie J., 43; and children Charley, 18, Margret, 16, Barbra A., 12, William J., 10, David, 8, Joe, 6, Daniel R., 4, and Rebecca, 3; plus A. Murphy, 60, mother-in-law.

In the 1900 census of Geddies Gin township, Cumberland County, North Carolina: farm laborer Jack Armstrong, 75; wife Annie, 68; daughter Janie, 15; and grandson George W. Murphy, 12.

In the 1920 census of Taylors township, Wilson County: tenant farmer Doc Robinson, 55; wife Maggie, 53; children Mary, 18, James C., 19, Virginia, 17, David, 14, Elijah, 12, and Jessie B., 3; Vangie, 32, Geneva, 17, and Addie McDoogle, 15; and Moses Robinson, 8, and lodgers Jack, 103, and Annie Armstrong, 101.

Annie Armstrong died 5 April 1920 in Taylor township, Wilson County. Per her death certificate, she was 103 years old; was born in Johnston County to Annie Murphy and an unknown father; worked as a farmer for George Piage; and was married to Jack Armstrong. William Jas. Armstrong was informant.

Maggie Roberson died 5 April 1928 in Wilson township, Wilson County. Per her death certificate, she was 55 years old; was born in Fayetteville, North Carolina, to Jack and Annie Armstrong; was married to George Roberson; and farmed for Will Carr.

Jack Armstrong died 5 January 1932 in Mingo township, Sampson County, North Carolina. Per his death certificate, he was born 11 February 1815 to John Wood and an unknown mother; was widowed; and was a farmer.

Newspapers across the state reported that Jack Armstrong had been “the oldest North Carolinian” at the time of his death.

Wilson Daily Times, 12 January 1932.

Photo courtesy of F. Cooper Jr., great-great-grandson of Jack Armstrong.

Obituary of Essie Mae Earp Taybron, 101.

Mother Taybron on her 100th birthday.

Mrs. Essie M. Taybron, 101, of 612 Grove Street, Wilson, NC passed away on June 4, 2017.

Funeral services are scheduled for Saturday, June 10, 2017 at 2:00 pm at Branch Memorial Holiness Church, 517 Hadley Street, SE, Wilson, NC. Pastor Herman Lucas will deliver the eulogy. Burial will follow in Rest Haven Cemetery, Lane Street, Ext., Wilson, NC.

A public visitation will be held on Friday, June 9, 2017 from 3:00 pm until 6:00 pm at Stevens Funeral Home, 1820 Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway, Wilson, NC.

The family will receive friends at the home where they will assemble on Saturday at 1:00 pm in preparation for the funeral precession.

Arrangements are by Stevens Funeral Home, 1820 Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway, Wilson, NC.

Screen Shot 2018-03-26 at 6.43.22 PM.png

Obituary and photos courtesy here.

Supercentenarian.

Screen Shot 2018-03-22 at 9.36.56 PM.png

Maggie Hinnant Barnes at age 115.

“Maggie Pauline Barnes (née Hinnant; 6 March 1882 – 19 January 1998) was a verified American supercentenarian who holds the record for the oldest verified person from the state of North Carolina. She claimed to be 117 but her age was verified as being born on 6 March 1882 (according to a family bible; the 1900 census said “Mar 1881”) and she died 19 January 1998, from gangrene infection, at the age of 115 years, 319 days. She was survived by 4 of her 15 children. She was the 3rd-oldest verified living person and the 2nd-oldest in the United States after Sarah Knauss, although she has since been surpassed by Jeralean Talley, Besse Cooper, and Susannah Mushatt Jones, among others.

“Maggie Pauline Hinnant was born in Black Creek, Wilson, North Carolina as the daughter of Louzaine Hinnant and an unknown father. She married William Orangie Barnes at Maggie’s stepfather Dread’s farm in Black Creek, Wilson 22 October 1899. The couple would have 15 children, of which eight would reach an adult age: Lillian, Clara, Gladys, Nell, Willie, Mary, Ruth and Mildred. The family moved to Kenly, Wilson, North Carolina in 1904 and Maggie spent the remaining part of her life in this area. Maggie Barnes died in Kenly, Johnston, North Carolina 19 January 1998 aged 115 years, 319 years.”

——

On 22 October 1899, William Barnes, 22, of Wilson County, son of Gastin and Waity Barnes, married Maggie Hinnant, 19, of Wilson County, daughter of Luzana Hinnant, at Dread Barnes‘ house in Black Creek. Joseph Farmer, Grant Farmer and C.H. Darden were witnesses.

In the 1900 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Orange W. Barnes, 21, sawmill laborer, and wife Maggie, 18, farm laborer.

Entry and photo from gerontology.wikia.com.

Obituary of Ethel Vick Harris, 100.

Ethel Mae Vick Harris, 100, of Wilson, NC, died Saturday April 8, 2017. Funeral Services will be held on Saturday, April 15, 2017 at 11 a.m. at Edwards Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Mary Vick Howell officiating. Burial will be private in Rest Haven Cemetery. Public viewing will be on Friday, April 14, 2017 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Edwards Funeral Home Chapel. The family will assemble at Edwards Funeral Home at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday. Direct condolences to edwardscares.com. Professional and personal services are entrusted to Edwards Funeral Home, 805 Nash St. E in Wilson.

——

In the 1920 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer Samuel Vick Jr., 32; wife Lizzie, 21; and children James, 4, Malissa, 3, and James, 2 months. [The elder “James” was probably daughter Jane, and “Malissa” seems to have been Ethel Mae.]

In the 1930 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: farmer Sam J. Vick, 33; wife Lizzie, 31; and children Jane, 15, Ethel M., 14, Lynard, 13, Lucile, 9, Bloomer, 8, Eva May, 6, Margaret, 4, Sam R., 3, and Percy L., 7 months.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: tobacco factory laborer Sam Vick, 46; wife Elizabeth, 44, also a tobacco factory laborer; and children Ethel, 22, maid, Mattie, 17, housekeeper, Lenwood, 20, Beullah, 16, Eva, 14, Margrett, 12, Richard, 11, Percy, 10, and Sylvester, 5.

Obituary online.

Obituary of Madeline Jones, 105.

Madeline “Mattie” Jones, 105, a resident of Avante at Wilson Nursing Care Facility died October 8, 2014. The funeral will be held Saturday at 10:00 am at St. John AME Zion Church, 119 N. Pender St., Wilson, NC with Dr. Micheal S. Bell, officiating. Interment will follow in Rest Haven Cemetery. Public viewing will be Friday from 2-5:30 pm at the funeral home with the family receiving friends from 7-8 pm at the church. Family and friends are requested to assemble on Saturday at the funeral home at 9:30 am for the processional to the church. Professional and personal services are entrusted to EDWARDS FUNERAL HOME, 805 E. Nash Street, Wilson, NC. Condolences may be directed to edwardscares.com.

Obituary online.

Obituary of Doretha W.E. Parker, 100.

Doretha White Evans Parker, 100, a resident of Wilson Pines Nursing Center and formerly of 4968 Lake Wilson Rd., Elm City, NC died Sunday [8 April 2012] at Wilson Medical Center. The funeral will be held Saturday at 1:00 pm at William Chapel Baptist Church, 6154 William Chapel Church Rd., Elm City, NC with Rev. Jimmy Parker, pastor, officiating. Interment will follow in William Chapel Cemetery. As a centenerian Mrs. Parker has seen five generations of family. Left to cherish her memory are three children; Joseph Carl “JC” Evans (Alice) of San Antonio, Tx, John Estee Parker (Evelyn) of Greensboro, NC and James Parker of Durham, NC; one brother, Fred White (Thelma) of Durham, NC; 13 grandchildren; several great-grandchildren and many great-great grandchildren and several great-great-great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends. Her mantle was passed to her dear nieces, including Evelyn Lindsey Lucas, who was her diligent caregiver. Public viewing will be held on Friday from 2-7 at the funeral home with the family receiving friends there from 7- 8 pm. Family and friends will assemble on Saturday at 12 noon at the home of her niece Eunice Lindsey, 204 S. Railroad Street, Elm City, NC for the procession to the church. Professional and personal services are entrusted to EDWARDS FUNERAL HOME, 805 E. Nash Street, Wilson, NC. Condolences may be directed to edwardscares.com.

Obituary online.

——

Per a Wilson County Birth Index, Doretha White was born in 1912 to Joe T. White and Lula Edwards.

In the 1930 census of Coopers township, Nash County: farmer Joe T. White, 53, divorced; and children Arthor, 29, Doretha, 18, Catherine M., 16, Joe T., 14, Altas R., 10, and Nannie F., 6.

Obituary of Lillie Ruth Bullock, 100.

Lillie Ruth Barnes Bullock (1917-2017).

“Mrs. Lillie Ruth Bullock, 100, of Wilson, NC, departed this earthly life on November 19, 2017 at Wilson House Assisted Living in Wilson, NC.

“Funeral services are scheduled for Sunday, November 26, 2017 at 2:00 pm at Flat Rock Church of Christ, Disciples of Christ, 6730 Flat Rock Road, Sims, NC.

“A public visitation will be held on Saturday, November 24, 2017 from 3:30 until 7:00 pm at Stevens Funeral Home, 1820 Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway, Wilson, NC.

“Mrs. Bullock was preceded in death by her husband, Albert Bullock, Sr.; her parents, Leslie Barnes and Edna Jones Barnes; four sisters, Inez Nelson, Lincy Barnes, Edna Harrison and Cleo McNair and one brother, Jack Barnes.

“She leaves cherished memories to: her son, Albert Bernard Bullock of Wilson County, NC; two grandchildren, Edward Bernard Bullock and Qunalla Ciera Bullock; a host of nieces, nephews, cousins other relatives and friends.

“Arrangements are by Stevens Funeral Home, 1820 Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway, Wilson, NC.”

——

In the 1920 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: on New Wilson and Raleigh Road, farmer Less Barnes, 24; wife Edna, 30; daughters Lillie Ruth, 2, and Mary, 1; mother-in-law Elizabeth Jones, 52, widow; brothers-in-law James, 32, and John Jones, 29; and sister-in-law Carrie Jones, 18.

In the 1930 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: Les Barnes, 27, farmer; wife Mary E., 41; and children Lillie R., 12, Mary L., 11, Nathaniel, 8, Cleo B., 7, and Edna E., 2.

On 30 November 1937, Albert Bullock, 26, of Old Fields, son of Louise Bullock, married Lillie Barnes, 23, of Old Fields, daughter of Les Barnes, in Old Field. Less Barnes, Lonnie Alston and Mary Lincy Barnes witnessed.

In the 1940 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: Willie Bullock, 30; wife Mavis, 28; and children Mary, 6, and Willie, 4; brother Albert, 28; sister-in-law Lily, 23; widowed mother Louise, 60; and son Wallace, 3.

Leslie Barnes died 31 June 1973 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 2 February 1900 to Joe Barnes and Lillie Strickland; was a retired laborer; and resided in Sims. Lillie Bullock of Sims was informant.

 

Obituary of Bertha H. Carroll, 102.

Screen Shot 2017-10-23 at 6.49.30 PM

Bertha Bryant Hawkins Carroll (1915-2017).

Mrs. Bertha H. Carroll, age 102, of Spring Hill, Florida and formerly of Wilson, NC, died Monday, October 16, 2017. Funeral services will be held on Monday, October 23, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. at Tabernacle Temple of Jesus Christ, Inc., 1601 Lane Street in Wilson, NC with Bishop Staccato Powell officiating. Burial will follow in the Rest Haven Cemetery. Public viewing will be on Sunday, October 22, 2017 from 2-7 pm at Edwards Funeral Home Chapel and the wake will be from 5-7 pm. The family will assemble at 12:00 noon on Monday at her residence for the processional 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.

Adapted from the funeral program:

Quietly and peacefully on Monday morning, October 16, 2017 at home in Spring Hill, Florida, Mrs. Bertha Bryant Hawkins Carroll transitioned from this earthly life into eternity with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

She was born in Wilson, North Carolina and was the middle daughter of Isham and Rossie Underwood Bryant. In this community, Bertha received her formal educational and Christian values. She graduated from Wilson Colored High School, now known as Charles H. Darden High School in 1933. Bertha continued with her formal education by attending and graduating from Livingstone College, Salisbury, North Carolina with a degree in Education. Following college she moved to Brooklyn, New York and worked as a social worker for the City of New York. Social work was her passion and her life’s work, and in 1960, she continued this passion when she returned to Wilson, she retired from the Wilson County Department of Social Services.

Upon returning home, Bertha united with St. John AME Zion Church where she remained a devoted member until she moved to Spring Hill, Florida with her son and daughter in-law. At St. John, she was the Church Clerk for over thirty years and well as the writer of the church resolutions.

Never one to be idle, she lived a very active and fulfilling life in Wilson. Among her many community activities, she was a member of the following organizations: Wilson Book & Garden Club, St. John AME Zion Church Conference Workers, Eastern Star Starlight #259, Wilson Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Darden Alumni Association, Mary McLeod Bethune Women’s Civic Club, The Red Hot Society, Inc., OIC, Good Timers Senior Bowling League at Westview Lanes, and she was the founder of the Wilson Loyal Leisure Club. Bertha was also a Wilson Medical Center volunteer.

Bertha was a loving and devoted wife to Dewitt Hawkins and to this union two sons were born, and she lovingly reared a step-daughter. After the death of Dewitt, she later married Daniel Carroll, who was a prominent business man in Wilson and lovingly raised another step-daughter.

——

In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 596 Wainwright Street, tobacco factory laborer Isham Bryant, 27; wife Rossie, 21; and children Beatrice, 5, Bertha, 4, and Inez, 1.

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 805 Roberson Street, Isom Bryant, 37, factory laborer; wife Rossie, 32, public school maid; and daughters Beatrice, 15, Bertha, 14, and Inez, 11.

Bertha Bryant married Dewitt Hawkins on 8 September 1942 in New York City. Hawkins died 21 October 1956. Per a Report on Interment, he served in 3294 QM Svc. Co. QMC from 1942 to 1945 as a private first class and was buried in Long Island National Cemetery. His next of kin was Bertha Hawkins, 183-48 Dunlop Avenue, Saint Albans, New York — “Widow Bertha to be buried in the same grave.”

Bertha Bryant Hawkins returned to Wilson and later married Dan Carroll, who owned a popular Nash Street pool room.

Daniel Carroll died 27 November 1990 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 15 April 1905 in Henderson, Vance County, to Daniel Carroll Sr. and Lina Coppedge; owned a billiard parlor; resided at 715 Elvie Street; and was married to Bertha Bryant.

Screen Shot 2017-10-23 at 7.01.00 PM

Bertha and Daniel Carroll.

Top photo courtesy of Wilson Daily Times; bottom photo courtesy of Ancestry.com user MichaelJ379.