death certificate

First-generation freedom, pt. 6.

The sixth in a series of annotated abstracts of Wilson County death certificates of African-Americans born before 1870, the cusp of slavery and freedom. The records are a trove of information about otherwise obscure family relationships among enslaved and free people of color and shed light on intra- and interstate migration patterns in the decades after Emancipation.

——

Barnes, Della. Born 1841, Wilson County. Died 29 March 1931, Wilson township. Father, F.K. Moore, Wilson County. Mother, Sarah Moore, Wilson County. Married to Drew Barnes. Common laborer. Resided 501 Murray Street, Wilson. Informant, Bessie Barnes. 

Barnes, Dina B. Born 1849, Wilson County. Died 4 February 1944, Lucama. Father, Simon Dew, Wilson County. Mother, Litha Horne, Wilson County. Widow of Blount Barnes. Farmhand. Buried at Beckie Pate. Informant, Bessie Lee Dew. [In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Simon Due, 45, wife Litha, 40, and children Laney, 16, Peter, 15, Lucy, 11, Hilliard, 7, Izaih, 9, Arch, 3, Deanah, 10, Hester, 3, Patience, 4 months, and Zilpha Due, 3, and William Horn, 5 months.]

Barnes, Dollie Ann. Born 1856, Nash County. Died 13 January 1929, Wilson. Father, Jacop Boddie, Nash County. Mother, not listed. Married to Lemon Barnes. Tenant farmer for E.K. Wright. Informant, Leona Barnes.

Barnes, Dollie Ann. Born 1861, Wilson County. Died 19 January 1928, Crossroads township. Father, Edmond Williamson, Wilson County. Mother, Bethune Williamson, Wilson County. Married to Matherson Barnes. Common laborer. Buried in Williamson cemetery. Informant, Timothy Seaberry. [In the 1880 census of Crossroads township, Wilson County: Edmund Williamson, 50, wife Thany, 44, and children William, 25, Nicie, 23, Eliza, 22, Eddie, 22, Ally, 19, Pollina, 17, Dolly Ann, 15, Isacc, 12, and Raiford, 7.]

Barnes, Dred. Born 1860, Wilson County. Died 29 September 1930, Black Creek township. Father, Nelson Barnes, Wilson County. Mother, Annie Daniel, Wilson County. Farmer. Married to Lusina Barnes. Informant, Lusina Barnes. [In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Nelson Barnes, 35, wife Ansey, 36, and children Harriet, 15, Margaret, 12, Dread, 10, Mae, 8, Thomas, 7, and Lon, 2 months.]

Barnes, Ed. Born 1869, North Carolina. Died 5 December 1916, Wilson. Father, George Barnes, North Carolina. Mother, not listed. Married. Brickmason. Buried in Wilson. Informant, Mary Turner.

Barnes, Ellen. Born 1851, Wilson County. Died 17 March 1936, Stantonsburg township. Father, Bill Barnes, Wilson County. Mother, Harriett Barnes, Wilson County. Widow. Resided in Stantonsburg township. Informant, Rev. Wiley Barnes.

Barnes, Fannie. Born 1850, Johnston County. Died 21 August 1918, Wilson. Father, Chas. Barnes, North Carolina. Mother, Nicy Watson, North Carolina. Widow. Resided at Branch farm. Tenant farmer. Buried in Wilson. Informant, Joseph Taylor.

Barnes, Frances. Born 1860, Wilson County. Died 30 May 1938, Wilson. Father, Morrison Woodard, Wilson County. Mother, Martha Thorn, Wilson County. Married to Short W. Barnes. Informant, Maggie Crawford. [In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: carpenter Morison Woodard, 47; wife Martha, 32; and children Nancy, 18, Arche, 17, and Cherry, 15, all farm laborers, Rosa, 13, Frances, 8, Jane, 7, John, 4, Martha, 1, and Mary, 2 months.]

Barnes, Frank. Born 1845, Wilson County. Died 29 July 1919, Wilson township. Father, Harry Barnes, North Carolina. Mother, Nellie Barnes, North Carolina. Married. Farmer. Buried Wilson County. Informant, Austin Barnes.

Barnes, Gatsey. Born 1833, Wilson County. Died 4 July 1931, Stantonsburg township. Father, Spencer Roundtree, Wilson County. Mother, Venus Roundtree, Wilson County. Widow. Buried Barnes graveyard.

Barnes, George. Born 12 November 1949, Wilson County. Father  Roundtree, Wilson County. Mother, Annie Barnes, Wilson County. Married to Sylvesta Barnes, Day laborer. Resided Manchester Street, Wilson. Buried in Elm City. Informant, Frank Barnes.

Barnes, George. Born 1835, Wilson County. Died 22 November 1933, Wilson. Father, not listed. Mother, Debra Woodard, Wilson County. Widower. Resided Wilson County Home. Informant, Mistry Woodard.

Barnes, George T. Born 1859, Wilson County. Died 12 April 1935, Wilson. Father, John Barnes, Wilson County. Mother, Della Farmer, Wilson County. Widower of Mary Barnes. ACL Railroad employee. Resided Viola Street, Wilson. Informant, John H. Barnes.

Barnes, George. Born 1855, North Carolina. Died 19 December 1910, Wilson. Father, not listed. Mother, Rosa Barnes, North Carolina. Widower. Laborer. Informant, Tib Barnes. [In the 1870 census of Town of Wilson, Wilson County: washer woman Rosa Barnes, 40; with children George, 13, farm laborer; Auther, 10, brickyard worker; Phebee, 8; and domestic servant Pricilla Joyner, 25.

Where did they go?: Pennsylvania death certificates, no. 3.

The third in a series — Pennsylvania death certificates for Wilson County natives:

  • Willie Taylor

42410_2421406260_0708-02075

In 1942, Willie Taylor registered for the World War II draft in Pennsylvania. Per his registration card, he lived at 2118 West Jefferson Street, Philadelphia; was born 16 April 1886 in Wilson; and his closest relative was Jesse Taylor of the same address. At “Employer’s Name and Address”: “Self” — Elder — Just returned from Cuba. At “Place of Employment or Business”: Bishop Ida Robinson, 920 North 19th Street, Philadelphia. [This was headquarters of the Mount Sinai Holy Church of America, founded by Bishop Robinson.] He signed ‘Elder Willie Taylor.’

  • Carrie Spicer Davenport

42410_2421401696_0741-00509

  • Exum Creech

42342_2421401696_0561-02787

In the 1880 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: Limbrick Hinnant, 22, and Zana, 33, Thomas, 12, Rome, 10, and Exum Creech, 8, all servants in the household of white farmer Wiley T. Williamson.

  • Jesse Walter Winstead & George L. Winstead

42410_644066_0775-03139

42410_2421406260_0773-01308

The death certificates of brothers Jesse and George Winstead both list their birthplace as Elm City, which is firmly in Wilson County. However, census and other records suggest that, while Elm City was their postal address, the Winstead family in fact lived inside the Nash County line.

In the 1900 census of Coopers, Nash County: farmer Charles Winstead, 56, wife Rhoda, 45, and children James, 28, a farmer, Anna, 26, Lucy, 23, George, 21, Nora, 19, Amanda, 17, Addie, 15, Mollie, 12, Charley, 10, and Jesse, 8, all farm laborers, and widowed father Peter, 85.

  • Ferebee Rowe Kates

42410_2421406272_0854-00003

In the 1910 census of Taylors township, Wilson County: carpenter Samuel Rowe, 74, wife Louisa, 62, and daughter Farrebe, 23.

On 17 April 1919, Van Cates, 33, of Taylors township, son of John and Frances Cates, both deceased, married Fereby Rowe, 33, of Wilson, daughter of Sam and Lou Rowe.

In the 1930 census of Taylors township, Wilson County: Van Kates, 42, wife Phereby, 46, son George, 17, and boarders William Flemming, 52, and Rosevelt Bains, 17.

First-Generation Freedom, pt. 5.

The fifth in a series of annotated abstracts of Wilson County death certificates of African-Americans born before 1870, the cusp of slavery and freedom. The records are a trove of information about otherwise obscure family relationships among enslaved and free people of color and shed light on intra- and interstate migration patterns in the decades after Emancipation.

——

Barnes, Aaron. Born 22 June 1844, Wilson County. Died 20 May 1914, Wilson township. Father, Preston Williams, Wilson County. Mother, Harriett Barnes, Wilson County. Married. Farmer. Buried family graveyard. Informant, Johnnie Barnes, Elm City. [In the 1880 census of Upper Town Creek, Edgecombe County: Aaron Barnes, 34, wife Pennie, 24, and children Maggie, 7, Louisa, 5, Annie, 3, and Aaron, 1. In the 1900 census of Toisnot townshio, Wilson County: Aaron Barnes, 54, wife Penny, 47, and children Aaron, 21, Penina, 18, Maimie, 16, Elijah, 13, Edwin, 12, Virginia, 9, and Penny, 7.]

Barnes, Aaron. Born about 1845, Wilson County. Died 20 December 1915, Gardners township. Father, Joshua Barnes. Mother, not listed. Married. Farmhand. Buried “near London Church.” Informant, C.F. Jones, Wilson. [Possibly, in the 1870 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Aaron Barnes, 22, Matilda Barnes, 20, and Mary A. Smith, 22.]

Barnes, Adline. Born 1857, Wilson County. Died 24 February 1931, Wilson. Father, Joyner Rountree, Wilson County. Mother, America Cambell, Wilson County. Widow of Aaron Barnes. Resided 201 Walnut Street, Wilson. Informant, Penina Williams. [In the 1910 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Aaron Barnes, 60, wife Adline, 50, and niece Effie Barnes, 10.]

Barnes, Allie. Born 1862, Wilson County. Died 8 November 1917, Gardners township. Father, Haywood Batts, Wilson County. Mother, Rhoda Pender, Wilson County. Married. Informant, Mark Barnes. [In the 1900 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Mark Barnes, 50, wife Allice, 33, children Rodie A., 10, Minnie E., 7, William F., 3, and Bertha Ann, 8 months, plus boarder Willie Batts, 17. In the 1910 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Mark Barnes, 60, wife Allie, 43, children and grandchildren Rodie, 20, Eva, 17, William F., 13, Bertha, 10, Lucy, 7, Ida, 5, Haywood, 2, James, 4, and Hattie, 2, and father-in-law Haywood Batts, 77.]

Barnes, Annie. Born 1869, Edgecombe County. Died 2 August 1920, Black Creek township. Father, Tonnie Parker, North Carolina. Mother, Wadie Mercer, North Carolina. Divorced. Tenant farmer. Informant, Silvester Barnes. [In the 1920 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Sylvester Barnes, 23, wife Esther, 20, and mother Annie, 58.]

Barnes, Annie. Born 1845, Wilson County. Died 26 December 1917, Wilson. Father, George Battle, North Carolina. Mother, not listed. Widow. Informant, George Barnes. [In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on County Line Road, George Barnes, 71, wife Annie, 66, and son Joshua, 34.]

Barnes, Arron. Born 1852, Wilson County. Died 6 October 1930, Lucama. Father, Arron Barnes Sr. Mother, Elvie Barnes, Wilson County. Farmer. Married to Kannie Barnes. Buried in Pollie Watson graveyard. Informant, R.A. Woulds, Lucama.  [In the 1900 census of Crossroads township, Wilson County: Aaron Barnes, 42, wife Chanie, 37, and sister-in-law[?] Tempie Peacock, 15. In the 1910 census of Crossroads township, Wilson County: Aaron Barnes, 54, wife Chainie, 45, and mother-in-law Celia Thompson, 86. In the 1920 census of Crossroads township, Wilson County: Aaron Barnes, 63, and wife Chanie, 62. In the 1930 census of Crossroads township, Wilson County: Aron Barnes, 72, and wife Chanie, 72.]

Barnes, Banzora. Born 1 August 1860, Wilson County. Died 10 August 1937 at Mercy Hospital, Wilson County. Father, Louis Bass, Wilson County. Mother, Julie Dew, Wilson  County. Widow. Farmer. Informant, Elitha Pleasant, 806 Happy Hills, Wilson. [In the 1900 census of Cross Roads township, Wilson County: Jerry Barnes, 41, wife Arzonie, 39, and children Rosa L., 15, Sarah, 12, Louis, 10, Milbert, 8, Elitha J., 6, Warren, 4, and William H., 2. In the 1910 census of Cross Roads township, Wilson County: widow Banzore Barnes, 45, and children Sarah, 23, Annie, 18, Louis, 20, Litha J., 16, Warren, 14, and William H., 12. In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Banzory Barnes, 59, and children Sarah, 30, Bud, 23, Eliza, 20, and William, 21. In the 1930 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: William H. Barnes, 32, wife Hattie, 24, and children Kenly, 7, Junior, 6, and Joseph,  4, plus mother Danzory Barnes, 70.]

Barnes, Bethany Ann Drucilla Jane. Born 3 July 1853, Wilson County. Died 30 June 1923, Springhill township. Father, Willis Jones, Wilson County. Mother, not listed. Widow of Essic Barnes. Buried Barnes graveyard. Informant, Frank Barnes. [In the 1860 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: Willis Jones, 62, wife Sarah, 52, Henry, 20, Alexander, 19, Noel, 16, Willis, 12, Paton, 10, Burthany, 7, Sarah, 13, and James, 10. In the 1870 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: Willis Jones, 70, wife Sarah R., 61, and children Willis R., 23, Phaton A., 20, and Bethany, 18. In the 1880 census of Cross Roads township, Wilson County: Esseck Barnes, 27, and wife Thany, 23. In the 1910 census of Spring Hill township, Wilson County: on “path leading to Wilson and Raleigh Road,” Essic Barnes, 59, wife Thanie, 54, and sons Wiley J., 14, and James H., 10.]

Barnes, Blaney. Born 1844, Wilson County. Died 26 April 1915, Crossroads township. Father, Sip Barnes, Wayne County. Mother, not listed. Married. Farmer. Buried, Barnes graveyard. Informant, Wiley H. Johnson, Lucama. [On 21 September 1903, Blaney Barnes, 50, resident of Lucama, married Diana Ricks, 45, resident of Spring Hill, in Spring Hill township. In the 1910 census of Spring Hill township, Wilson County: Blaney Barnes, 55, wife Dianna, 44, daughter-in-laws Louvenia Furgerson, 21, and Jane Barnes, 19, and grandchildren Hiliard, 7, and Joseph N. Barnes,  5, Willie Furgerson, 4, and Martha J. Barnes, 12, plus boarder Troy Barnes, 23.]

Barnes, Calvin. Born 1843, Wilson County. Died 21 February 1923, Wilson. Father, Benjamin Barnes, Wilson County. Mother, Violet Barnes, Wilson County. Married. Day laborer. Resided Stantonsburg Street. Informant, Redmond Barnes. [See also, Cherry Barnes, below.]

Barnes, Chanie. Born 1856, Nash County. Died 26 March 1936, Lucama. Father, George Thompson, Nash County. Mother, Celia Thompson, Nash County. Widow of Aaron Barnes. Resided Main Street, Lucama. [See Arron Barnes, above.]

Barnes, Charles. Born 1853, Wilson County. Died 18 June 1930, Wilson. Father, Alex Barnes, Wilson County. Widower. Resided East Viola Street, Wilson. Informant, John M. Barnes. [In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Charley Barnes, 30, wife Beckey, 36, and children John, 10, Frank, 6, Ann, 4, William C., 3, Tom, 1, and Cora H., 1 month. In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Charles Barnes, 50, wife Rebecca, 57, and children John, 27, William, 23, Annie, 20, Tom, 18, and Corrah, 12. In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Charles Barnes, 60, wife Rebecca, 52, and son Tom, 32. In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 213 Pender Street, Charles Barnes, 72, and wife Becky, 70.]

Barnes, Cherry. Born 1860, Edgecombe County. Died 6 March 1925, Wilson County. Father, not listed. Mother, Olive Heart. Widow of Calvin Barnes [see above]. Resided 608 Stantonsburg Street. Informant, James Henry Powell, Tarboro. [On 25 November 1909, Calvin Barnes, 69, son of Ben and Bilet Barnes, married Cherry Tart, 53, daughter of Henry and Polly Brown. Rev. W.H. Neal, minister of Saint James Holy Church performed the ceremony in Wilson County. In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Calvin Barnes, 70, and wife Cherry, 52. In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 610 Stantonsburg Street, Calvin Barnes, 85, and wife Cherrie, 56.]

Where did they go?: Indiana death certificates, no. 1.

Death certificates of Wilson County natives who died in Indiana.

  • Delphia Simpson Blackwell

45232_354336-02778

Delpha Blackwell died 2 April 1902 in Indianapolis of apoplexy. Her death certificate states that she was born in North Carolina to Silias Laster and Orpie Laster.

In the 1860 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Silas Lassiter, 38; wife Orpie,34; and children Sallie, 12, Mary, 11, James, 9, John, 7, Elizabeth, 5, Penina, 4, Hardy, 3, Silas, 1, and George, 3 months, and Delpha Simpson, 14.

On 7 December 1866, Mathew Lassiter married Delpha Simpson in Wilson County. [Mathew was Delpha’s uncle by marriage, brother of her step-father Silas Lassiter.]

In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Mathew Lassiter, 47; wife Delphy, 24; and children Harriet, 3, unnamed, 1 month, and Thomas Lassiter, 2.

In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Nathan Blackwell, 40; his wife Mary Blackwell, 55; 36 year-old servant Delpha Lassiter; Harriet Lassiter, 14, and Nathan Lassiter, 4; Charlotte Baker, 70; and Edwin Blackwell, 17.

Nathan Blackwell and Delphia Lassiter married 30 January 1890 in Wilson County. In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: 59 year-old day laborer Nathan Blackwell; wife Delpha, 53; daughter-in-law [stepdaughter?] Harriet, 33; and Harriet’s children James, 16, Jonas, 13, Martha, 11, and Peter, 10.

  • Nathan Blackwell

45232_356114-02381

In 1860, Nathan E. Blackwell, 20, is listed as a wagoner living in the household of white farmer Robinson Baker in Old Fields township, Wilson County.

In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: 31 year-old farm laborer Nathan Blackwell, 42 year-old Mary Blackwell, and 6 year-old Edwin Blackwell.

In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Nathan Blackwell, 40; his wife Mary Blackwell, 55; 36 year-old servant Delpha Lassiter; Harriet Lassiter, 14, and Nathan Lassiter, 4; Charlotte Baker, 70; and Edwin Blackwell, 17.

Nathan Blackwell and Delphia Lassiter married 30 January 1890 in Wilson County. In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: 59 year-old day laborer Nathan Blackwell; wife Delpha, 53; daughter-in-law [stepdaughter?] Harriet, 33; and Harriet’s children James, 16, Jonas, 13, Martha, 11, and Peter, 10.

  • Jonas Blackwell

44494_350786-00309

Jonah Blackwell died 22 December 1916 in Indianapolis after being struck in the head with a stove poker. Nathan Blackwell (below) was informant.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: 59 year-old day laborer Nathan Blackwell; wife Delpha, 53; daughter-in-law [stepdaughter?] Harriet, 33; and Harriet’s children James, 16, Jonas, 13, Martha, 11, and Peter, 10.

On 26 August 1910, Jonah Blackwell, 23, of Wilson, North Carolina, and son of Nathan Blackwell and Harriet Black, married Clara Martin in Indianapolis.

  • Nathan Blackwell

45232_354182-02098

Nathan Blackwell died in Indianapolis on 20 January 1946. His death certificate reports that he was born in Wilson County to unknown parents.

In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Nathan Blackwell, 40; his wife Mary Blackwell, 55; 36 year-old servant Delpha Lassiter; Harriet Lassiter, 14, and Nathan Lassiter, 4; Charlotte Baker, 70; and Edwin Blackwell, 17.

On 17 October 1894, Nathan Blackwell, 26, married Bertha Paton in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: factory laborer Nathan Blackwell, 35, Tennessee-born wife Bertha Bell, 35, and daughter A.J., 3, plus a boarder.

On 28 November 1916, Nathan Blackwell, son of Nathaniel Blackwell and Delphia Laster, married Lulu Winkfield in Indianapolis.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: at 2345 Baltimore Street, railroad boilermaker Nathan Blackwell, 45, Tennessee-born wife Lola, 37, and daughter Jane A., 13.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: at 2345 Baltimore Street, railroad laborer Nathan Blackwell, 57, wife Lola, 42, and daughter Jane Young, 23.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: at 2345 Baltimore Street, steam railroad laborer Nathan Blackwell, 76, wife Lulu, 67, and nephew Pete Demunery, 48.

  • Nancy Newsome Baker

45232_354369-03029-1

Nancy Baker died 28 December 1952 in Indianapolis. Her death certificate reports that she was born in Wilson County, North Carolina, on 18 August 1880 to Tonie Newson and an unknown mother.

In the 1880 census of Cross Roads township, Wilson County: Toney Newsome, 61, wife Jane, 41, and children Benjamin, 20, Mary, 13, Gastin, 11, and Nancy, 8.

On 18 November 1889, Benjamin Baker, 20, son of Ephriam and Margarett Baker, of Cross Roads, married Nancy Newsome, 18, daughter of Tony and Jane Newsome, in Cross Roads township.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: widow Nancy Baker, 70, was a boarder in the household of Harvey Coleman at 1058 Traub Avenue.

  • Mary Simms Berry

44494_351202-01926

Mary Berry died in Indianapolis on 30 November 1958. Her death certificate reports that she was born 23 January 1874 in Wilson, North Carolina, to Jeff Simms and Carolyn Shirley.

Jefrey Simms, son of Willis Hagans and Dicey Simms, married Carolin Barnes, daughter of Robert Dupree and Meneney Dupree, on 19 April 1869 in Wilson County. In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Jeffrey Simms, 24, wife Caroline, 21, and an unnamed one month-old daughter.

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born laborer Jeff Sims, 35, wife Carline, 25, and daughters Martha, 10, Maliza, 6, Lillie, 3, and Laura, 1.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Center township, Marion County, Indiana: at 746 Walnut, North Carolina-born widow Caroline Simms, 47, a washerwoman, with daughters Mary, 27, Laura, 21, and Bessie, 17. Mary was a divorced washerwoman. Laura was a servant, and Bessie, the only child born in Indiana, was a student.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1316 Columbia, Kentucky-born Lee H. Clemmons, 29, wife Laura, 29, widowed sister-in-law Mary Berry, 32, and a lodger. Lee was a saloon bartender and Mary worked as a housemaid.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born Mary E. Berry, 44, divorced, lived alone in a rented home and worked as a cook for a private family.

  • Laura Simms Clemmons

45232_354178-02108

Jefrey Simms, son of Willis Hagans and Dicey Simms, married Carolin Barnes, daughter of Robert Dupree and Meneney Dupree, on 19 April 1869 in Wilson County. In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Jeffrey Simms, 24, wife Caroline, 21, and an unnamed one month-old daughter.

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born laborer Jeff Sims, 35, wife Carline, 25, and daughters Martha, 10, Maliza, 6, Lillie, 3, and Laura, 1.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Center township, Marion County, Indiana: at 746 Walnut, North Carolina-born widow Caroline Simms, 47, a washerwoman, with daughters Mary, 27, Laura, 21, and Bessie, 17. Mary was a divorced washerwoman. Laura was a servant, and Bessie, the only child born in Indiana, was a student.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1316 Columbia, Kentucky-born Lee H. Clemmons, 29, wife Laura, 29, widowed sister-in-law Mary Berry, 32, and a lodger. Lee was a saloon bartender and Mary worked as a housemaid.

  • Floyd Woodard

44494_351971-02204

Floyd Woodard died in Indianapolis on 26 April 1995. His death certificate reports that he was born in Wilson, North Carolina, on 1 May 1904 to Fred and Mary Ann Sauls Woodard and was buried there in Rest Haven cemetery. Floyd did not migrate to Indiana until well into adulthood; he registered in Wilson for the World War II draft.

32892_2421406264_0121-01314

  • Wiley C. Bunn

45232_355664-00618

Wiley C. Bunn died in Indianapolis at his home at 2044 Ralston on 4 December 1941. His death certificate reports that he was born on 8 July 1873 in Wilson to Charlie Bunn and worked as a city street sweeper.

On 28 October 1899, Wiley Bunn, 27, of North Carolina, son of Charles Bunn, married Mattie Anderson in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1900 census of Warren, Marion County, Indiana: Wiley Bunn, 26, and wife Mattie, 27, who had been born in Utah to North Carolina-born parents. Wiley worked as a street car laborer.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: on 5715 Bona Avenue, street laborer Wilie Bunn, 36, Virginia-born wife Mattie H., 38, a laundress, and father Chas. Bunn, 73.

Wiley C. Bunn married Julia A. Mitchell in Marion County, Indiana, on 5 September 1915.

On 12 September 1918, Wiley C. Bunn, 45, of 1803 Alvord Street in Indianapolis registered for the World War I draft. He listed his occupation as railroader for Mead Construction Company and Julia Bunn as his nearest relative. He was described as medium height and build with brown eyes and black hair.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2044 Ralston Avenue, owned and valued at $2000, Wiley Bunn, 55, a city laborer, and Kentucky-born wife Julia, 44.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2044 Ralston Avenue, owned and valued at $800, Wiley Bunn, 66, a street cleaner, wife Julia, 63, and daughter Mary C. Donawy, 9.

  • Jason Cornelius Farmer

45232_355692-02064

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: Warren Farmer, 37, wife Nancy, 24, and children Ella, 13, Rosann, 11, Harriett, 10, Julia, 9, Abel, 5, and Jason, 1, all born in North Carolina.

On 23 February 1897, Jason Farmer, 28, married Hannah Aretts in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 37, wife Hannah, 46, and stepdaughters Maggie, 25, Ardena, 14, and Pennie Artis, 12.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, foundry worker Jason C. Farmer, 46, wife Hannah, 56, and stepdaughter Penetta Artis, 22, a hairdresser, all born in North Carolina.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, automobile shop laborer J.C. Farmer, 55, wife Hannah, 60, son-in-law Osborne Ballenger, 26, and daughter Pettie, 32.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2329 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 60, and wife Hannah, 75.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, widower J.C. Farmer, 62, working as a retail grocery truck driver.

  • Hannah Ellis Artis Farmer

45232_356169-00494

Hannah Farmer died 6 April 1935 in Indianapolis. Her death certificate reports that she was born 12 April 1852 in North Carolina to Jack and Margaret Ellis.

In the 1870 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: Jackson Ellis, 45, wife Margaret, 36, children Hannah, 17, and Hewel, 11, and Hannah Ellis Sr., 90, plus Lucy, 2, and Mary Simms, 1.

On 29 February 1872, John Artist, son of Arch and Rose Artist, married Hannah Ellis, daughter of Jack and Margaret Ellis at H. Dew’s.

In the 1880 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: John Artice, 40, wife Hannah, 23, and daughters Mary L., 10, Margaret, 8, and Susan, 1 month.

On 23 February 1897, Jason Farmer, 28, married Hannah Aretts [Artis] in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 37, wife Hannah, 46, and stepdaughters Maggie, 25, Ardena, 14, and Pennie Artis, 12.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, foundry worker Jason C. Farmer, 46, wife Hannah, 56, and stepdaughter Penetta Artis, 22, a hairdresser, all born in North Carolina.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, automobile shop laborer J.C. Farmer, 55, wife Hannah, 60, son-in-law Osborne Ballenger, 26, and daughter Pettie, 32.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2329 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 60, and wife Hannah, 75.

  • Ardena Artis Hamm

45232_354136-00146

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 37, wife Hannah, 46, and stepdaughters Maggie, 25, Ardena, 14, and Pennie Artis, 12.

On 20 July 1912, Ardena Artis, 26, daughter of John Artis and Hannah Farmer, married John H. Hamm, son of Ben Hamm and Mary Jones, in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2020 Alvord, John Ham, 34, and wife Ardena, 35.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1038 Roache, gas plant janitor John H. Hamm, 40, and wife Ardena, 41.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: Ardena Hamm, 52, servant, in the household of Margaret Aufderheide.

Indiana Death Certificates, 1899-2011 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

 

First-generation freedom, pt. 4.

The fourth in a series of annotated abstracts of Wilson County death certificates of African-Americans born before 1870, the cusp of slavery and freedom. The records are a trove of information about otherwise obscure family relationships among enslaved and free people of color and shed light on intra- and interstate migration patterns in the decades after Emancipation.

——

Bagley, Lenora. Born 1852, Wilson County. Died 15 June 1915, Old Fields township. “Cancer of face.” Father, William Jones, North Carolina. Mother, Zillie Jones, North Carolina. Widow. Informant, Thos. Jones, Wilson. [In the 1880 census of Old Fields township, WIlson County: Lenora Jones, 28, daughters Missouri A., 9, Sallie Ann, 7, Mary Ida, 6, and Lucy, 26 days, and mother Zillah Jones.]

Bagley, Ruffin. Born 1866, Wilson County. Died 30 December 1915, Old Fields township. Gastritis. Father, Henderson Bagley, North Carolina. Mother, Fannie Williamson, North Carolina. Farmer. Married. Buried in Bagley burying ground. Informant, Nestus Bagley, Wilson. [In the 1870 census of Chesterfield, Nash County: Henderson Bagley, 40, and children Catherine, 15, Allen, 10, Zillie, 8, Nestus, 6, and Thomas R., 4. In the 1880 census of Old Fields, Wilson County: farmer Henderson Bagley, 53, and children Allen, 21, Zillah, 18, Genestus, 17, and Ruffin, 4.]

Bailey, Elizar. Born 1857, Wilson County. Died 16 May 1916, Old Fields township. “Long standing  fibroid tumor of bowells.” Father, Thomas Shaw, Wilson County. Mother, Katy Shaw, Wilson County. Farmer. Widow. Buried Wilson County. Informant, Milly Bailey. [In the 1870 census of Springhill township: Thomas Shaw, 26, wife Katy, 37, and children Frances, 16, Eliza, 14, Fox, 12, David, 11, Martha, 4, and Mary, 2.]

Bailey, Gray. Born 10 March 1845, North Carolina. Died 7 July 1914, Old Fields township. “Valvular heart lesion.” Father, Moses Bailey, North Carolina. Mother, Vilet Bailey, North Carolina. Married. Farmer. Informant, W. Grady, Wilson. Buried at New Vester cemetery. [In the 1880 census of Old Fields, Gray Bailey, 34, wife Iser, 24, and children Florence A., 7, James T., 5, Polly Ann, 3, and Harriett, 1.]

Baines, Simon. Born 1850, Nash County. Died 8 September 1930, Wilson. Resided at 8-6 Singletary Street, Wilson. “Chronic interstitial nephritis when I saw her.” Tenant farmer. Married to Diannah Baines. Father, Mack Eatman, Nash County. Mother, Rachel Baines, Nash County. [In the 1880 census of  Old Fields township: Simon Baines, 30, wife Isabel, 27, and children Duncan E., 9, Henry R., 2, and Vandelia, 5 months, plus Hasty Locust, 21. Simon, Isabel and Hasty’s ages were indicated as approximate.]

Baines, Zilphia. Born 1 September 1857, Wilson County. Died 30 March 1926, Gardners township. Myocarditis. Father, Stephen Taylor, Wilson County. Mother, Rachel Mercer, Wilson County. Buried family cemetery. Informant, Johnnie Baines. [In the 1870 census of Garners township: Stephen Taylor, 35, wife Rachel, 32, and children Zillie, 13, Zelphy, 10, Caroline, 5, Willis, 4, and Martha, 1.]

Baker, Mary Eliza. Born 1868, Wilson County. Died 29 November 1920, Wilson. “Leakage at heart found dead in bed.” Married to Wm. Baker. Mother, Annie Boan, Wilson County. Informant, William Baker. [In the 1900 census of Wilson: William Baker, 40, wife Mary, 31, children Rachael, 13, and Joseph, 12, and mother-in-law Annie Mercer, 65.

Baker, Miley. Born 26 March 1854, Wayne County. Died 12 November 1933, Gardners township. “No doctor called in old age & a stroke of parlies only lived a short time.” Widow of Richard Baker. Father, John Artis, Wayne County. Mother, Miley Artis, Wayne County. Buried Snow Hill, North Carolina. Informant, Sudie Jenkins, Macclesfield. [In the 1860 census of Davis district, Wayne County: John Artis, 39, wife Lethy, 40, and children Sarah J., 13, Zachary, 11, Milly, 9, William T., 7, and Betsey, 4. In the 1880 census of Bull Head township, Greene County: Richard Baker, 51, wife Millie, 27, children John R., 21, and James F., 19, Lulu, 8, Hattie, 5, and Bud, 3.]

Baker, Nathan. Born 15 April 1866, Nash County. Died 24 May 1931, Old Fields township. “No doctor died suddenly.” Married to Harriet Baker. Farmer. Father, Roberson Baker. Mother, Anna Wilkerson. Buried at New Vester cemetery. Informant, Albert Bailey. [In the 1880 census of Old Fields township: Nathan Baker, 17, and Samuel Baker, 19, servants in the household of white farmer Arnold Nichols.

Baker, West. Born 19 February 1852, Wilson County. Died 19 June 1917, Black Creek township. Chronic nephritis. Married. Farmer. Father, Ephram Baker, Wilson County. Mother, Margarette [no last name given], Wilson County. Buried at Moore graveyard. Informant, James Baker. [In the 1870 census of Old Fields township: Ephraim Baker, 51, wife Margarett, 45, and children Bitha, 21, Pricilla, 15, Etta, 12, Pinah, 10, Louisana, 7, Needham, 5, Margarett, 3, and Benjamin, 2 months, and Eli Williamson, 15.]

Ballard, Henretta. Born 1869, Wilson County. Died 31 August 1918, Toisnot township. Pulmonary tuberculosis. Married to Henry Ballard. Father, Dick Lucas, North Carolina. Mother, Bettie Lucas, North Carolina. Informant, Henry Ballard.

Banks, Mary. Born 6 March 1860, Johnston County. Died 27 November 1947, Cross Roads township. Chronic myocarditis. Widow of Isiah Banks. Father, Lum Revells. Mother, Hannah Barnes. Buried at Polly Watson cemetery, Wayne County. Informant, Allen Banks. [On 1891, Isiah Banks, 25, married Mary Revell, 25, in Wilson at the A.M.E. Zion church. Both were residents of Springhill township.]

Barbour, Boston. Born 4 November 1853, North Carolina. Died 2 September 1916, Wilson. Valvular disease of heart. Carpenter day laborer. Father, Lewis Dodge, North Carolina. Mother, Lucy Barbour, North Carolina. Informant, Adeline Barbour, Wilson. [On 25 September 1902, Boston Barbour, 35, married Adeline Pool, 40, at Jordan Taylor‘s house in Wilson. Taylor, Ben Parks and Mary E. Baker (see above) were witnesses, and Rev. William Baker, Missionary Baptist, performed the ceremony.]

 

First-generation freedom, pt. 3.

The third in a series of annotated abstracts of Wilson County death certificates of African-Americans born before 1870, the cusp of slavery and freedom. The records are a trove of information about otherwise obscure family relationships among enslaved and free people of color and shed light on intra- and interstate migration patterns in the decades after Emancipation.

Atkinson, Archie. Born 1849, Wilson County. Died 1 December 1931, Spring Hill township. Chronic endocarditis. Father, Rite Atkinson, Wilson County. Farmer. Widower of Martha Atkinson. Buried Atkinson cemetery. Informant, James Williamson. [In the 1880 census of Wilson, Arch Atkinson, 24, wife Martha, 16, and niece Flora F., 13.]

Atkinson, Chas. Born 1865, Gardners township. Died 23 October 1915, Gardners township. Tuberculosis of lungs. Father, Harry Atkinson, Wilson County. Mother, Sophia Bridgers, Wilson County. Married. Farmer. Buried at home. Informant, H.R. Forbes, Macclesfield. [Charles Atkinson, 23, son of Harry and Sophia Atkinson, married Rosella Suggs, 21, of Edgecombe County, daughter of Calvin and Nancy Suggs, on 27 August 1891 in Gardners township.]

Atkinson, Frances. Born about 1856, North Carolina. Died 23 September 1916, Spring Hill township. Paralysis due to cerebral hemorrhage. Father, Thomas Shaw. Mother, Katie Shaw. Married. Buried Barnes graveyard. Informant, S.T. Atkinson, Kenly. [In the 1870 census of Spring Hill township, Wilson County: farmer Thomas Shaw, 26, wife Katy, 37, and children Frances, 16, Eliza, 14, Fox, 12, David, 11, Martha, 4, and Mary Shaw, 2. On 8 August 1872, Nathan Atkinson married Frances Shaw in Wilson County.]

Atkinson, Jane. Born 1849, Wilson County. Died 3 February 1929, Black Creek township. Cerebral hemorrhage. Father, Benjamin Newsome, Wilson County. Mother, Pennie Newsome, Wilson County. Farmer. Widow of John Atkinson. Buried, Farrell cemetery. Informant, James Gray Atkinson, Black Creek. [On 3 April 1869, James Atkinson, son of James and Rillie Atkinson, married Jane Newsome, daughter of Ben and Etney Newsome, in District 3, Wilson County.]

Atkinson, John. Born 1863, Harnett County. Died 15 May 1931, Elm City. Emphysema following influenza and pneumonia. Father, Hays Atkinson. Mother, Annie Atkinson, Harnett County. Married. Watchman, ACL Railroad crossing. Buried Elm City. Informant, Priscilla Atkinson, Elm City.

Atkinson, Martha May. Born 1866, Spring Hill township. Died 1 November 1931, Spring Hill township. Acute indigestion. Father, Thomas Shaw. Mother, Katie Shaw. Husband, Archibald Atkinson. Buried at homeplace. Informant, James Atkinson, Lucama. [See Frances Atkinson, above. On 29 February 1880, Arch Atkinson, 22, married Martha Shaw, 19, at Caty Shaw’s. Witnesses were Amos Hinnant, Willis Taylor and Frank Adams.]

Atkinson, Parry. Born 1845, Pitt County. Died 26 July 1928, Wilson Colored Hospital, Wilson. Gangrene of foot. Father, Edmond Gorham, Pitt County. Mother, Harriett Gorham, Pitt County. Widower of Smithie Atkinson. Common laborer. Buried Marshboro cemetery, Pitt County. Informant, John Atkinson. [Resident of Farmville, Pitt County.]

Atkinson, Susan. Born 15 March 1854, North Carolina. Died 3 June 1919, Spring Hill township. “Acute dilitation of heart.” Father, Isaac Barnes, North Carolina. Mother, Abbie Barnes, North Carolina. Widow. Informant, Tom Atkinson, Kenly.

Austin, Ephriam. Born 1853, Warren County. Died 18 October 1918, Wilson. Apoplexy. Father, James Austin. Railroad worker, ACL. Resided 702 Railroad Street, Wilson. Wife Alice Austin. Buried Norlina, North Carolina. Informant, James Austin, Wilson.

Avery, Henry. Born 1857, Wake County. Died 30 October 1926, Wilson. “Hypertrophied prostate with retention of urine, several months duration.” Mother, Mima Smith, Wake County. Farmer. Wife, Lula Avery. Buried, Jones Hill cemetery. Informant, Lula Avery.

Aycock, Louisa. Born 1860, Edgecombe County. Died 18 March 1935, Wilson. Father, Ned Proctor, Edgecombe County. Mother, Celia Williford, Edgecombe County. Widow of David Aycock. Resided 411 Jones Street, Wilson. Informant, Lena Rodgers, Rocky Mount.

Ayers, Council. Born December 1830. Died 1 December 1915, Spring Hill township. Father, Sampson Ayers. Farmer. Widower. Buried Boyette, North Carolina. Informant, William Ayers, Lucama. [In the 1850 census of District 3, Johnston County: Council, 11, and Henry Ayers, 9, in the household of merchant James Paulk. On 30 April 1866, Council Ayers married Mary Carroll in Johnston County. In the 1870 census of Beulah township, Johnston County: Council Ares, 52, wife Mary, 33, and William Smith, 3.]

Ayers, Zilpha. Born April 1863, Wilson County. Died 18 February 1917, Spring Hill township. Mother, Laney Dew, Wilson County. Married. Buried Hinnant graveyard. Informant, William Ayers, Lucama. [In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Simon Dew, 55, wife Lithy, 48, children Laney, 27, Peter, 23, Lucy, 23, Deannah, 21, Isaih, 20, Hilliard, 18, Hester, 16, Aarch, 14, Liscy, 12, Patience, 10, Sarah, 8, and Simon, 6, and grandchildren Zilpha, 13, Roxie A., 3, and William, 1.]

First-generation freedom, pt. 2.

The second in a series of annotated abstracts of Wilson County death certificates of African-Americans born before 1870, the cusp of slavery and freedom. The records are a trove of information about otherwise obscure family relationships among enslaved and free people of color and shed light on intra- and interstate migration patterns in the decades after Emancipation.

——

Armstrong, Alice. Born 26 April 1865, Wayne County. Died 26 January 1948, Elm City. Bowel obstruction. Father, Primers Mitchell. Mother, Caroline Mitchell, Wayne County. Widow. buried Elm City cemetery. Informant, Fred Armstrong, Elm City. [In the 1870 census of Joyners township, Wilson County: Primus Mitchell, 25, wife Caroline, 35, and children William, 12, Laurance, 1, and infant girl, 2.]  In the 1940 census of Elm City, Toisnot township, Wilson County: at 237 Cobb Avenue, Alice Armstrong, 73, daughter Maggie McFaden, 53, granddaughter Lucille McFaden, 26, and son Gray Armstrong, 28.]

Armstrong, Elnora. Born 1869, Halifax County. Died 22 October 1945, Wilson County. Father, Monroe Williams, Virginia. Mother, Susie Williams, Virginia. Widow. Resided 608 East Green Street, Wilson. Informant, Carrie Jones, Philadelphia. [In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Elnora Armstrong, 90, widow, a lodger in the household of N. Andrew and Ada W. Pierce at 415 East Green Street.]

Armstrong, Garry. Born 1846, Edgecombe county. Died 1 February 1928, Toisnot township. “No doctor within last 30 days.” Father, Abraham Armstrong, Edgecombe County. Mother Cherry Armstrong, Edgecombe County. Farmer. Wife, Henrietta Armstrong. Buried in family cemetery, Wilson County. Informant, John H. Armstrong, Elm City. [In the 1870 census of Joyners township, Wilson County, Gary Armstrong appears as a 20 year-old farm laborer sharing a household with 20 year-old George Batts. See also Nelson Armstrong, below.]

Armstrong, Guston. Born 1835, Edgecombe County. 30 November 1923, Toisnot township. Chronic nephritis. Father, Quinnie Braswell. Tenant farmer for F.R. Hall. Wife, Sillie Armstrong. Informant, Van Armstrong, Sharpsburg. [In the 1870 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Augustus Armstrong, 30, wife Pricilla, 22, and children Sallie, 4, Stella, 2, and William, 4 months.]

Armstrong, Hatliss. Born 1851, Ashton, North Carolina. Died 3 March 1936, Wilson. “Probably chr. nephritis.” Father, Darry Armstrong, Ashton. Widower. Laborer. Resided 711 Sugg Street, Wilson. Informant, Oscar Armstrong, 711 Sugg Street.

Armstrong, Martha. Born 1835, Wilson County. Died 29 August 1931, Gardners township. “No doctor within last 30 days.” Father, Peter Williams, Wilson County. Mother, Winnie Williams, Wilson County. Widow of Lewis Armstrong. Informant, Rosa Ruffin, Elm City. [In the 1880 census of Gardners, Wilson County: Louis Armstrong, 38, Morthwy, 38, and children Charles, 11, Peter, 9, Deler, 7, Matty, 5, and Ida, 2.]

Armstrong, Mary. Born 1866, Edgecombe County. Died 25 September 1924, Toisnot township. Born 1866, Edgecombe County. Died 25 September 1924, Toisnot township. Father, Crumel Bullock. Mother, Rena Bulluck. Husband and informant, Nelson Armstrong, Sharpsburg (see below.)

Armstrong, Nelson. Born 1854, Edgecombe County. Died 8 December 1934, Toisnot township. Father, Abraham Armstrong, NC. Mother Cherry Armstrong, NC. Farmer. Widower. Informant, Henry Armstrong, Stantonsburg. [In the 1870 census of Joyners township, Wilson County: Abraham Armstrong, 52, wife Cherry, 32, and children Nancy, 16, Haywood, 14, Nelson, 12, Joshua, 11, and Burlee, 7.]

Arrington, Lillie. Born 12 March 1864, Enfield, North Carolina. Carcinoma stomach. Died 11 January 1942, Elm City. Father, Sisroe Thornton, Enfield. Mother, Roda Whitaker, Enfield. Widow of Henry Arrington. Buried Elm City cemetery. Informant, W.E. Arrington, Elm City. [Census records suggest that Cicero Thornton was born about 1855 and his daughter Lillie about 1880.]

Artis, Benjamin. Born 1856, Wilson County. Died 18 July 1936, Wilson County. Cause of death not determined. Father, Richard Artis, Wilson County. Mother, Eliza Artis, Wilson County. Widower. Farmer. Resided at County Home. Informant, David Ruffin. [In the 1880 census of Stantonsburg, Wilson County: Richard Artis, 28, wife Eliza, 40, and children Ben, 12, Henry, 11, Richard, 3, and Jane, 2.]

Artis, Cain. Born March 1851, Wayne County. Died 23 March 1917, Wilson township. Pulmonary tuberculosis. Father, Adam T. Artis, Wayne County. Mother, Winnie Coley, Wayne County. Farmer. Married. Buried Wilson County. Informant, W.M. Coley.  [In the 1880 census of Nahunta, Wayne County: Cain Artis, 25, wife Anie, 25, and children Ivey C., 2, and Appie, 1. Cain’s father was a free man of color, and Cain, his mother and sister were enslaved. See here.]

Artis, Edd. Born 1861, Wayne County. Died 10 June 1936, Wilson township. Father, Alford Artis, Wayne County. Mother, Eliza Artis, Wayne County. Farmer. Wife, Zilpha Artis. Buried Rest Haven cemetery. Informant, Clarence Artis.

Artis, Eliza. Born 1842, Wilson County. Died 4 December 1920, Wilson township. “Old age stated as no doctor.” Father, Harry Cobit, North Carolina. Mother, Nicy Barnes, North Carolina. Widow. Tenant farmer for E.B. Baines; informant, Watts Barnes.

Artis, Fabie. Born 1864, Wilson County. Died 30 March 1930, Wilson.Paralysis. Father, Silas Barnes, Wilson County. Mother, Rosetta Farmer, Wilson County. Widow. Resided 1213 Washington Street, Wilson.  Buried Rountree cemetery. Informant, John T. Artis, Wilson. [In the 1870 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: Silas Barnes, 49, wife Rosa, 45, and children Wade, 23, and Feribee, 20.]

Artis, Henry. Born 1864. Died 22 October 1918, Stantonsburg township. Father, Richard Artis, North Carolina. Mother, Liazza Artis, North Carolina. Farmer for Chester Jordan. Married to Anna Artis. Buried at Billy Barnes’ place, Stantonsburg. Informant, Chester Jordan. [See Benjamin Artis, above.]

Artis, John. Born 1862, Wayne County. Died 16 September 1927, Wilson. Valvular heart disease. Father, Joe Artis, Wayne County. Married to Sarah Artis. Resided on Stantonsburg Street, Wilson. Informant, James Ward, Stantonsburg.

Artis, Lucinda. Born 1847, Wayne County. Died 23 June 1931, Wilson County. Cerebral hemorrhage. Father, Henry Hobbs. Mother, Elizabeth Hobbs, Wayne County. Widow of Jessie Artis. Resided 310 Reid Street, Wilson. Buried Wayne County. Informant, Cora Artis, Wilson. [In the 1850 census of the North Side of the Neuse, Wayne County: farm laborer Henry Hobbs, 26, wife Eliza, 27, children Lucinda, 2, and John, 1 month, and Mary Hobbs, 54.]

Artis, Luvennia. Born 1854, Wilson County. Died 11 May 1924, Wilson. Father, Haywood Moye, North Carolina. Mother, Eliza Stanton, Wilson County. Laundress. Widow. Resided 177 Narroway. Informant, Emma Artis.

Artis, Noah. Born 14 September 1856, Wilson County. Died 16 May 1952, Wilson County. Father, Adam Artis. Widower. Resided 312 Finch Street, Wilson. Buried family cemetery, Wilson County [actually, Wayne County]. Informant, Pauline Harris. [In the 1860 census of Davis district, Wayne County: Adam Artis, 30, children Kerney, 4, Noah, 2, and Mary Jane, 1, plus Jane Artis, 26, and infant, 1 month. Sidenote: Cain Artis and Lucinda Artis, above, were Noah’s half-brother and aunt by marriage.]

Artis, Patsy Ann. Born 1869, Edgecombe County. Died 3 April 1922, Wilson township. Cerebral paralysis. “Patient had small-pox at time of death.” Father, Charly Hines, Edgecombe County. Tenant farmer for Judge Fleming. Married to Jessie Artis.

Artis, Winnie. Born 1832, Wayne County. Died 25 November 1922, Spring Hill township. “No doctor in attendance. Died of general infirmities of old age.” Father, Reuben Reaves, Wayne County. “Invalid for Years.” Servant. Widowed. Buried Wayne County near Pikeville. Informant, Dock Brown, Kenly.

 

First-generation freedom, pt. 1.

The first in a series of annotated abstracts of Wilson County death certificates of African-Americans born before 1870, the cusp of slavery and freedom. The records are a trove of information about otherwise obscure family relationships among enslaved and free people of color and shed light on intra- and interstate migration patterns in the decades after Emancipation.

——

Adams, Alice.  Born 1857, Wilson County. Died 1 June 1927, Cross Roads township. Hemorrhage on brain. Father, Willis Taylor, born Wilson County. Mother, Sarah Rose, born NC. Married to Onley Adams. Worked for Ambrose Loucas. Buried in Lucama. Informant, John Adams, Lucama. [In the 1860 census of Kirbys district, Wilson County: Sarah Rose, 50, and Richard Odom, 21, cooper, both white; plus turpentine worker Willis Taylor, 45, Nancy Rose, 11, and Alice Rose, 7, all mulatto. In the 1870 census of Cross Roads township: Sarah Rose, 59, and daughter Alice, 15, both white. Next door, Willis Taylor, 51, also white. In the 1880 census of Cross Roads township: Willis Taylor, 70, farmer, living alone. Next door: Leonidas Adams, 38, wife Alice, 25, and children Willis, 8, Junius, 7, Mary Ann, 5, and John, 2, plus, Piety Lynch, 54, cook, and John E. Denson, a 30 year-old white fruit tree seller.]

Adams, Della.  Born 9 December 1866, Wilson County. Died 11 April 1952, Lucama, Cross Roads township. Cerebral hemorrhage. Father, Gray Adams. Mother, Mollie Cotton. Widow. Buried at Daniel cemetery, Fremont NC. Informant, Zeno Adams, Route 2, Lucama. [Gray Adams was the informant’s father, not Della’s. (This a common error caused by the manner in which the register of deeds questions the informant.) Per their marriage license, Gray Adams, 23, son of Ben Peacock, married Della Daniel, 20, daughter of Amos and Mollie Daniel, on 4 March 1880 in Wayne County.]

Adams, James Gray. Born 10 September 1860, Wilson County. Died 12 February 1927, Black Creek township. Carcinoma of pancreas. Father, Benjamin Peacock. Mother, Mary Peacock. Wife, Della Daniels Adams. Farmer. Buried at Daniels graveyard, Wayne County. Informant, Alex Adams. [See Della Adams, above.]

Adams, John. Born 1866, Richmond County. Died 6 April 1938, Black Creek township. Lobar pneumonia. Father, John Adams, born Richmond County NC. Wife Maggie Adams. Farmer. Resided Route 1, Black Creek. Buried Wilson County. Informant, Addison Adams, Route 2, Bailey.

Adams, Leander. Born 1843, Virginia. Died 19 April 1931, Black Creek township. No doctor within last 30 days. Father, John Adams, Virginia. Mother, Matilda Fountain. Widower of Alice Adams. Farmer. Buried Wilson County. Informant, W.D. Adams. [See Alice Adams, above.]

Adkins, Preacela. Born 1862, Rocky Mount NC. Died 8 November 1934, Toisnot township. Father, Richard Parker, Edgecombe County. Mother, Charlotte Parker, Edgecombe County. Widow of John Adkins. Buried Elm City NC. Informant, David L. Parker. [In the 1870 census of Cokey, Edgecombe County: farm laborer Richard Parker, 39, wife Charlotte, 37, and children Effy D., 16, Milly, 11, Richard, 8, Priscilla, 6, Mary E., 5, William Ann, 4, John, 1, and Harriet, 1 month.]

Adkinson, Mamie. Born 17 November 1869, Savannah, Georgia. Died 8 December 1947, Wilson NC. Probably malnutrition due to old age. Father, Charles Crick, Savannah. Widow of Henry Adkinson. Resided 115 Narroway Street, Wilson. Buried Rest Haven cemetery, Wilson. Informant, Viola Parker of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Adkinson, Sallie. Born 1850, Johnston County. 22 February 1926, Toisnot township. Influenza pneumonia. Father, Joe Whitsby, Johnston County. Caroline Whitsby, Johnston County. Widow. Buried Elm City. Informant, A. Batts.

Adkison, Martha. Born February 1866, Edgecombe County. Died 29 October 1932, Wilson township. Father, Alex Bullock. Mother, Hannah Bennett, Edgecombe County. Widow. Buried in Wilson. Informant, Mary Brown. [In the 1880 census of Upper Town Creek, Edgecombe County: laborer Alex Bullock, 30, wife Hannah, 34, and children Martha, 14, Charlie, 13, Gen’l Grant, 8, George, 7, Puss, 6, Mary, 5, Nannie, 3, and Orren, 4 months.]

Aikins, John H. Born 1860, North Carolina. Died 20 July 1914, Wilson. Cardiac asthma. Father, Edward Akins, Virginia. Mother, Annie King, Virginia. Horse dealer and liveryman. Married. Buried in Wilson. Informant, Georgia Akins.

Allen, Sarah Jane. Born Jun 1851, North Carolina. Died 5 June 1938, Old Fields township. “D.K. Sudden. Probably cardiac.” Mother, Lucy Williams, North Carolina. Widow of Isaac Allen. Buried, Southern Grove cemetery, Johnston County. Informant, Jerry Richardson.

Allen, William. Born 14 January 1839, Warren County. Died 17 August 1918, Spring Hill township. “Died suddenly no physician in attendance.” Father, Jim Allen, North Carolina. Mother, Mary [last name unknown], born North Carolina. Farmer. Buried in North Carolina. Informant, Kenzy Allen, Bailey, North Carolina.

Allen, Violet. Born 1858, Riverdale, Craven County. Died 27 March 1943, Wilson township. Father, Solomon [last name unknown], Riverdale, Craven County. Pellagra. Mother, Mary Alexander, Riverdale, Craven County. Widow. Farmer. Resided Wilson County Home. Usual residence in Black Creek. Buried in Black Creek. Informant, Henry Allen, Black Creek. [In the 1870 census of Wildwood, Craven County: Virginia-born farmer Solomon Alexander, North Carolina-born wife Mary, 34, and children Margerat, 13, Ann E., 10, and Violet, 4, plus farm laborers William Bright, 18, and Matilda Powell, 50. In the 1940 census of Black Creek, Wilson County: Violet Allen, 75, widow, living alone.]

Alston, James O. Born 1866, Franklin County. Died 12 September 1950, Wilson. Father, Charles Alston. Mother, Elsie [last name unknown]. Married. Orderly at Mercy Hospital. Resided at 507 East Green Street. Buried Rest Haven cemetery. Informant, Eula Locus. [Possibly, in the 1870 census of Sandy Creek, Franklin County: farmer Charles Alston, 40, wife Amy, and children Frances, 6, and James, H., 2. Also, per her death certificate, Eula Locus (1899-1964) was the daughter of James Alston and Martha Dew.]

Alston, Robert T. Born 1859, Granville County. Died 10 August 1931, Wilson township. Cardiovascular disease. Father, Aaron Alston, Granville County. Mother, Rosetta Alston, Warren County. Widower of Julia Alston. Jewelry and watchmaker. Informant, John T. Alston, Elm City. [In the 1870 census of Walnut Grove, Granville County: Aron Alston, 47, wife Rosetta, 18, and children Anna, 15, Haywood, 14, Robert, 12, Sallie, 10, Agnes, 9, Thomas, 7, Mary J., 4, and John H., 1.]

Anderson, Benjamin. Born 1856, Wilson County. Died 25 January 1920, Wilson County. Father, Benjamin Anderson, Wilson County. Mother, Kattie Barnes. Tenant farmer for Joseph C. Farmer. Wife, Maggie Anderson. Informant, Nathan Anderson. [In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Benjamin Anderson, 39, wife Catharine, 38, and children Robert, 13, Joseph, 10, Dink, 8, Dinah, 4, and Lucy, 1. All were born in North Carolina except Catharine, who reported a Virginia birthplace. In the 1880 census of the family, same location, Ben Anderson is listed as a 4 year-old, which would seem to indicate that he was about 20 years younger than reported on his death certificate.]

Anderson, Joseph. Born 1860, Wilson County. Died 25 February 1930, Wilson County. “Suppression of urine & valvular heart disease as complication.” Father, Benjamin Anderson, Wilson County. Mother, Kattie Anderson, Wilson County. Tenant farmer for Seth Tyson. Widower. Buried Wilson County. Informant, James Anderson, Route 2, Wilson. [See above.]

Applewhite, Luke. Born 1855, Nahunta, Wayne County. Died 13 June 1923, Cross Roads township. “Died sudden and not attended by physician.” Father, Luke Applewhite, Nahunta, Wayne County. Mother, Malindia [last name unknown], Nahunta, Wayne County. Farmer. “Husbane of Henry Etta.” Informant, B.F. Applewhite. [Per their marriage license, Luke Applewhite, 22, son of Luke Applewhite and Malinda Bridgers, married Henrietta Bridgers, 20, daughter of Liberty Bridgers, on 16 October 1879, at Ben Sauls’ plantation in Nahunta, Wayne County.]

Applewhite, Thomas. Born 1865, Wilson County. Died 11 June 1933, Saratoga, Wilson County. “Cardiac & renal dropsy.” Father, Thomas Applewhite, Wilson County. Mother, Amanda Applewhite, Wilson County. Widower. Farmer. Buried Wilson County. Informant, Walter Applewhite, Route 5, Wilson.

Where did they go?: Tennessee death certificates, no. 2.

Tennessee death certificates for African-American Wilson County natives:

  • Charlie James Barnes, Memphis.

33113_258062-02626

  • Minnie Collins Carey, Knoxville.

33113_257950-00902

  •  Maluel Coleman(?), Collinsville.

33113_257750-00094

  • Mamie Lee Gay King, Chattanooga.

33113_257902-00213

In the 1880 census of Town of Wilson, Wilson County: Samuel Gay, 29, wife Allice, 25, and children Blanch, 9, Louizah, 7, Edgar, 4, Charlie, 2, and Mamie, 1 month.

  • Henry Lassiter, Memphis.

33113_258055-00154

  • William Sellers, Rockwood.

33113_258127-01601

  • James Watson, Davidson County.

33113_257804-00157

Tennessee Death Records, 1908-1958 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.