family cemetery

The Brantley cemetery.

Armed with a 1937 Leica IIIa 35mm camera, Brian Grawburg has begun a project to document “lost” Wilson County graveyards. Using early 20th topographical maps, WPA cemetery surveys, Google Maps, and tips from the public, Grawburg has battled heat, humidity and nearly impenetrable thickets to create and preserve a record of these forgotten spaces.

This is the second in a series of posts exploring African-American cemeteries that rediscovered by Grawburg.

The Brantley cemetery, off Crepe Myrtle Road in Taylors township, Wilson County, contains nine headstones. For more about the Brantleys, see here and here and here.

  • Bettie Brantley — 1878-8 Dec 1919, daughter of Henderson Brantley and Mollie Boone Brantley.
  • Charlie Brantley — 1 Aug 1873- 8 Jan 1948, son of Henderson Brantley and Mollie Boone Brantley.
  • Finner Brantley — 1 Dec 1887-5 Jan 1924, son of Charlie Brantley and Margaret Locus Brantley.
  • Floyd Brantley — 17 Feb 1901-20 May 1905, son of Richard Brantley and Missouri Eatmon Brantley.
  • Henderson Brantley — ca. 1836-2 Dec 1916, son of Bettie Brantley.
  • Richard Brantley — ca. 1877-28 Dec 1905, son of Henderson Brantley and Bettie Brantley.
  • Solomon Finch  — 9 Mar 1896-11 Mar 1955, son of Jane Finch and Joseph Jones.
  • Annie Thomas Howard — 15 May 1907-1 Aug 1930, adopted daughter of Kenyon Howard and Mollie Brantley Howard.
  • Kenyon Howard — 28 Oct 1874-9 Dec 1938, son of Zealous Howard and Rhoda Eatmon Howard, first husband of Mollie Brantley Howard Brown.

Cemeteries, no. 25: the Dew family cemetery.

The well-maintained Dew cemetery lies behind Repha Church of God on Weaver Road east of the city of Wilson.

The stones mark the graves of Raiford and Jency Short Dew, both born into slavery, and their descendants.

  • Raiford Dew

Raiford Dew Feb 18, 1838 Apr. 12, 1907

In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Haywood [Raiford] Due, 35; wife Quincy [Jency], 34; and children Dennis, 14, Joseph, 12, Benj’n, 10, Caroline, 8, Jeffry, 7, Bush, 5, and Mary, 1.

In the 1880 census of the town of Wilson, Wilson County: Raford Dew, 45, farmer; wife Ginsey, 45; and children Caroline, 20, Bashrod, 14, Mary, 11, Martha, 9, Sallie, 7, W.H., 5, and Moses, 4.

In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Rayford Dew, age unknown; wife Jensy, age unknown; son Moses, 23; daughter-in-law Eliza, 40; and grandsons Jonie, 1, and Willie, 11.

  • Jency Short Dew

Jency Dew Nov, 5, 1838 June 19, 1922 Wife of Raiford Dew

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Moses Dew, 45; wife Eliza, 49; children Jonie, 19, Dora, 17, Mary, 15, Naomi, 14, David, 13, Pearl, 12, Lucy, 10, Rosetta, 9, and Moses, 3; grandson Johnnie Barnes, 5; and widow Jensy Dew, 83.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Rocky Mount Road via Town Creek, farmer Moses Dew, 45; wife Eliza, 49; children Jonie, 19, Dora, 17, Mary, 15, Naomi, 14, David, 13, Pearl, 12, Lucy, 10, Rosetta, 9, and Moses, 3; grandson Johnnie Barnes, 5; and widow Jensy Dew, 83.

Jency Dew died 5 June 1922 in Wilson township. Per her death certificate, she was born 27 November 1838 in Wilson County to Reddick Short and Easter Dew; was the widow of Raford Dew; and had worked in farming. Moses Dew was informant.

  • Jefferson Dew

Jefferson Dew

In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Haywood [Raiford] Due, 35; wife Quincy [Jency], 34; and children Dennis, 14, Joseph, 12, Benj’n, 10, Caroline, 8, Jeffry, 7, Bush, 5, and Mary, 1.

In the 1880 census of the town of Wilson, Wilson County: Raford Dew, 45, farmer; wife Ginsey, 45; and children Caroline, 20, Bashrod, 14, Mary, 11, Martha, 9, Sallie, 7, W.H., 5, and Moses, 4.

On 25 January 1883, Jeffrey Dew, 21, married Jane Harvey, 17, at Toisnot.

In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Jeff Dew, 38; wife Jane, 32, farm laborer; children Bessie, 12, Lesse, 9, Lula, 8, Nettie, 6, James E., 3, Lizzie, 2, and Jesse, i month,

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Nash Road, Jeff Dew, 46, farmer; wife Jane, 43, farm laborer; children Bessie, 21, Lessie, 19, Lula, 17, Nettie, 16, Eddie, 13, Lizzie, 12, Jessie, 9, Joseph, 8, Margaret, 6, and Jonah, 3. Jane and all but the youngest two children worked as farm laborers.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Rocky Mount Road via Town Creek, Jefferson Dew, 57, farmer; wife Jane, 55; children Lula, 26, Nettie, 24, Eddie, 22, Jesse, 20, Joe, 17, Margaret, 16, and Jonie, 14.

Jefferson Dew died 1 May 1926 in Wilson township. Per his death certificate, he was 63 years old; was born in Wilson County to Rayford Dew and Jensy Dew; was married to Jane Dew; and worked as a farmer.

  • Mary Dew Armstrong Boyette

Mary Boyette Jan. 6, 1869 Jan. 9, 1960

In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Haywood [Raiford] Due, 35; wife Quincy [Jency], 34; and children Dennis, 14, Joseph, 12, Benj’n, 10, Caroline, 8, Jeffry, 7, Bush, 5, and Mary, 1.

In the 1880 census of the town of Wilson, Wilson County: Raford Dew, 45, farmer; wife Ginsey, 45; and children Caroline, 20, Bashrod, 14, Mary, 11, Martha, 9, Sallie, 7, W.H., 5, and Moses, 4.

On 18 Novcember 1897, Alfred Boyette, 55, of Wilson, son of Hardy Hinnant, married Mrs. Mary Armstrong, 37, daughter of Raford Dew. Missionary Baptist minister M. Strickland performed the ceremony at Raford Dew’s house in the presence of Bush Dew, Moses Dew and Henry Melton.

In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: “geneator” [janitor] Alfred Boyette, 59; wife Mary, 32; and children Alfred, 1, Etna, 9, and Willie, 13.

In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 570 Kenan Street, Alfred Boyette, 75, laborer for town; wife Mary, 40; and children Million, 21, and Willie, 18, farm laborers, Edna, 11, and Gency, 9.

Jincy McBride died 3 November 1925 In Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born 6 September 1091 in Wilson to Alford Boyett and Mary Dew; was married to Harrison McBride; and worked as a tobacco factory day laborer. Informant was Mary Dew, 304 Walnut Street.

Mary Magdeline Dew Boyette died 9 January 1960 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born 6 January 1879 in Wilson County to Raeford Dew and Jessie Dew; was widowed; and resided at 504 Stantonsburg Street, Wilson. James Boyette was informant.

  • Wiley Rountree Sr.

Wiley Rountree Sr. Oct. 5,1871 Jan. 1, 1939 He was faithful to every duty

In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Andrew Rountree, 50; wife Nellie, 36; and children Elvy, 5, Rehna, 3, and Willie, 8 months; plus Mariah Farmer, 14.

In the 1880 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Andrew Rountree, 60; wife Nelly, 48; children Elva, 15, Marina, 12, Willie, 10, Syviann, 7, Vaul, 2, and America, 3 months; plus grandson Auston, 3.

On 5 December 1889, Willey Rountree, 20, of Toisnot, son of Andrew and Nelly Rountree, married Martha Dew, 19, of Toisnot, daughter of Raford and Jenny Dew. Free Will Baptist minister Crocket Best performed the ceremony at “the residence of the bride’s father in Toisnot Township, W.C.” in the presence of Alex Williams, Hardy Ellis and A.J. Farmer.

[Death certificates and other records of some of Wiley and Martha Dew Rountree’s oldest children suggest that the couple left Wilson shortly after their marriage and moved throughout the Southeast United States before returning to Wilson County about 1895. For example, Freeman Rountree was born in 1890 in South Carolina or Georgia; Wiley Rountree Jr. was born in Georgia in 1892; and Raiford Rountree was born in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1894.]

In the 1900 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: Willie Rowntree, 29; wife Martha, 27; and children Freeman, 9, Willie, 8, Rapherd, 6, Captan, 3, Dasie, 2, and Andrew, 1.

On 29 August 1906, Wiley Rountree, 36, of Wilson, son of Andrew Rountree and Nellie Rountree, married Matilda Locust, 31, of Wilson. Primitive Baptist minister Jonah WiIliams performed the ceremony “at Rev Steel’s house” in Wilson in the presence of Moses Dew, F.S. Steele and Jessie Whitehead.

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Tarboro Road, Wiley Rountree, 42; wife Matilda, 34; daughter Matha, 20, and her son Roscoe, 2; children Freeman, 19, Wiley Jr., 18, Raford, 16, Captain, 14, Daisey, 13, Andrew, 10, Husband, 9, Nellie, 8, and Frank, 6; and grandson Bosy, 3 months.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Wiley Rountree, 53; wife Matilda, 44; children Raiford, 25, Andrew, 20, Herbert, 17, Nellie, 16, Frank, 14, and Roscoe, 12; and grandsons Henry C., 6, and Eula, 4.

On 29 December 1929, Wiley Rountree, 60, of Wilson County, married Louvenia Cotton, 45, of Toisnot township. Presbyterian minister C.H. Hagans performed the ceremony in the presence of James H. Armstrong, John H. Armstrong, and Junius Best.

In the 1930 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Wiley Roundtree, 63; wife Louvinia, 47; and children Tennie L., 16, Carrie, 14, Henry C., 17, Paul A., 8, and Frank, 25.

Wiley Rountree died 1 January 1939 in Wilson township, Wilson County. Per his death certificate, he was 68 years old; was married to Louvenia Rountree; was a farmer; and was born in Wilson County to Andrew Rountree and Nellie Barnes. Informant was Wiley Rountree Jr.

  • Martha Dew Rountree

Martha Rountree Born Nov. 3, 1870 Died Nov. 4. 1905

In the 1880 census of the town of Wilson, Wilson County: Raford Dew, 45, farmer; wife Ginsey, 45; and children Caroline, 20, Bashrod, 14, Mary, 11, Martha, 9, Sallie, 7, W.H., 5, and Moses, 4.

On 5 December 1889, Willey Rountree, 20, of Toisnot, son of Andrew and Nelly Rountree, married Martha Dew, 19, of Toisnot, daughter of Raford and Jenny Dew. Free Will Baptist minister Crocket Best performed the ceremony at “the residence of the bride’s father in Toisnot Township, W.C.” in the presence of Alex Williams, Hardy Ellis and A.J. Farmer.

In the 1900 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: Willie Rowntree, 29; wife Martha, 27; and children Freeman, 9, Willie, 8, Rapherd, 6, Captan, 3, Dasie, 2, and Andrew, 1.

  • William Henry Dew

Wm. Henry Dew May 1874 Jan. 19, 1936 Gone but not forgotten.

In the 1880 census of the town of Wilson, Wilson County: Raford Dew, 45, farmer; wife Ginsey, 45; and children Caroline, 20, Bashrod, 14, Mary, 11, Martha, 9, Sallie, 7, W.H., 5, and Moses, 4.

William Dew, 32, of Wilson, son of Raford and Jensie Dew, married Susana Savage, 17, of Wilson, daughter of Amy Savage, on 10 October 1906 at Susana Savage’s residence. Primitive Baptist minister Jonah Williams performed the ceremony in the presence of Moses Dew, John Crisp and Leavi Arrington.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County — on New Stantonsburg Road, William Dew, 45; wife Susanna, 29; children Pearlie, 12, James W., 10, Lester, 9, Mary, 7, Levi, 5, Mamie, 4, Elnora, 2, and Ernest, 3 months; and mother-in-law Emmie Savage, 55.

In the 1930 census of Wilson township, Wilson County — William Dew, 55; wife Susanna, 40; children Pearlie, 22, James W., 20, Lester, 18, Mary L., 17, Levy, 15, Mamie, 13, Elnora, 11, and Earnest, 9, Gladys, 7, Alice, 5, and Orlanda, 4.

William Dew died 17 January 1936 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born in May 1874 in Wilson County to Raford Dew and Jensie Dew; was married to Susana Dew; and was a farmer.

  • Nettie Dew Viverette

Jesus Saves Nettie D. Vivret Born March __ 1895 Died June 16 _____

In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Jeff Dew, 38; wife Jane, 32, farm laborer; children Bessie, 12, Lesse, 9, Lula, 8, Nettie, 6, James E., 3, Lizzie, 2, and Jesse, i month,

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Nash Road, Jeff Dew, 46, farmer; wife Jane, 43, farm laborer; children Bessie, 21, Lessie, 19, Lula, 17, Nettie, 16, Eddie, 13, Lizzie, 12, Jessie, 9, Joseph, 8, Margaret, 6, and Jonah, 3. Jane and all but the youngest two children worked as farm laborers.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Rocky Mount Road via Town Creek, Jefferson Dew, 57, farmer; wife Jane, 55; children Lula, 26, Nettie, 24, Eddie, 22, Jesse, 20, Joe, 17, Margaret, 16, and Jonie, 14.

Willie Viverett, 30, of Wilson County, son of Ephriam Joyner and Clara Viverett, married Nettie Dew, 26, of Wilson County, daughter of Jefferson Dew and Mary J. Dew, on 30 March 1921. Baptist minister Elias Lucas performed the ceremony at Mary J. Dew’s residence in Wilson in the presence of Andrew Rountree, Moses Dew and Raiford Rountree.

In the 1930 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Willie Viverett, 39; wife Nettie, 35; sister Margaret Sauler, 26; and widowed mother Jane Dew, 65.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson township: at 914 Carolina Street, Willie Viverette, 50, state laborer; wife Nettie, 47, laborer; daughter Frances, 4; and roomer Nancy Barnes, 24, cook.

Nettie Vivrett died 16 June 1955 in Norfolk, Virginia. Per her death certificate, she was born 4 March 1895 in Wilson, N.C., to Jefferson Dew and Jane Harvey; was married to Willie Vivrett; and resided at 4208 Bowdens Ferry Road.

  • Bushrod Dew

Bush Dew Born Oct 27 [broken] April 1920

In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Haywood [Raiford] Due, 35; wife Quincy [Jency], 34; and children Dennis, 14, Joseph, 12, Benj’n, 10, Caroline, 8, Jeffry, 7, Bush, 5, and Mary, 1.

In the 1880 census of the town of Wilson, Wilson County: Raford Dew, 45, farmer; wife Ginsey, 45; and children Caroline, 20, Bashrod, 14, Mary, 11, Martha, 9, Sallie, 7, W.H., 5, and Moses, 4.

On 19 January 1892, Bush Dew, 26, married Susan Melton, 23, at M.C. Melton’s.

In the 1900 census, Bush Dew, 35; wife Susan, 32; and children Effa, 7, Etta, 6, and Losse, 4.

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Bush Dew, 45; wife Susan, 42; and children Effie, 15, Edward, 14, Dossie, 13, Nannie, 8, and Van, 8.

Bush Dew died 3 April 1920 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was 5[illegible] years old; was married to Susan Dew; was born in Wilson County to R.F. Dew and Jennie Dew.

  • Freeman Rountree

Freman Rountree Oct. 5, 1890 Apr. 10, 1963. Gone but not forgotten.

In the 1900 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: Willie Rowntree, 29; wife Martha, 27; and children Freeman, 9, Willie, 8, Rapherd, 6, Captan, 3, Dasie, 2, and Andrew, 1.

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Tarboro Road, Wiley Rountree, 42; wife Matilda, 34; daughter Matha, 20, and her son Roscoe, 2; children Freeman, 19, Wiley Jr., 18, Raford, 16, Captain, 14, Daisey, 13, Andrew, 10, Husband, 9, Nellie, 8, and Frank, 6; and grandson Bosy, 3 months.

On 31 August 1916, Freeman Rountree, 25, of Wilson, son of Wiley Rountree and Martha (last name not listed, married Vinie Wilson, 18, of Wilson, daughter of Tom Wilson and Anna Wilson. Rev. John A. Barnes, A.M.E.Z. minister, performed the ceremony in the presence of Jesse C. Lassiter, William Knight and Johnnie A. Barnes Jr.

In 1917, Freeman Rountree registered for the World War I draft. Per his card, he was born 5 October 1890; was born in South Carolina; was a self-employed farmer; and lived in Black Creek township. He was literate.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Freeman Rountree, 29, and wife Viana, 20.

In the 1930 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Freeman Rountree, 37; wife Vinie, 30; and adopted son Eddie Bynum, 14.

In the 1940 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Freeman Roundtree, 49, born in Florida; wife Viney, 38; and cousin Paul, 18, farm helper.

In 1940, Eddie Rountree registered for the World War II draft in Wilson County. Per his registration card, he was born 28 January 1916 in Beaufort County, N.C.; lived on Route 3, Wilson; worked on J.C. Speight’s farm, Route 2, Elm City; and his contact was father Freeman Rountree.

Freeman Rountree died 10 April 1963 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 5 October 1891 in Georgia to Wiley Rountree and Martha Dew; was married to Vinie W. Rountree; and was a farmer.

  • James Edward Dew

James E., son of Jefferson & Jane Dew

In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Jeff Dew, 38; wife Jane, 32, farm laborer; children Bessie, 12, Lesse, 9, Lula, 8, Nettie, 6, James E., 3, Lizzie, 2, and Jesse, i month,

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Nash Road, Jeff Dew, 46, farmer; wife Jane, 43, farm laborer; children Bessie, 21, Lessie, 19, Lula, 17, Nettie, 16, Eddie, 13, Lizzie, 12, Jessie, 9, Joseph, 8, Margaret, 6, and Jonah, 3. Jane and all but the youngest two children worked as farm laborers.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Rocky Mount Road via Town Creek, Jefferson Dew, 57, farmer; wife Jane, 55; children Lula, 26, Nettie, 24, Eddie, 22, Jesse, 20, Joe, 17, Margaret, 16, and Jonie, 14.

Eddie Dew died 7 February 1924 in Wilson township. Per his death certificate, he was born 18 June 1896 in WIlson County to Jefferson Dew and Mary Jane Harvey; was single; and was a farmer for Jefferson Dew.

  • William Dew

William Dew Died Oct. 14, 1941 Age 52 Yrs.

  • Calvin Rountree Sr., alias Captain Rountree

Calvin Rountree Sr US Army World War I 1895 1984

In the 1900 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: Willie Rowntree, 29; wife Martha, 27; and children Freeman, 9, Willie, 8, Rapherd, 6, Captan, 3, Dasie, 2, and Andrew, 1.

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Tarboro Road, Wiley Rountree, 42; wife Matilda, 34; daughter Matha, 20, and her son Roscoe, 2; children Freeman, 19, Wiley Jr., 18, Raford, 16, Captain, 14, Daisey, 13, Andrew, 10, Husband, 9, Nellie, 8, and Frank, 6; and grandson Bosy, 3 months.

Captain Rountree registered for the World War I draft in Wilson County in 1917. Per his registration card, he was born 25 December 1895 in Wilson County; lived on R.F.D. 5, Wilson; and farmed for his father. He signed his card with an X.

On 24 May 1918, Captain Rountree, 22, of Wilson, son of Wiley Rountree and Sarah Rountree, married Lizzie Horne, 19, of Wilson, daughter of Simon Horne and Nancy Horne at Simon Horne’s.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Tarboro Road, farm laborer Cavender Rountree, 25; wife Lizzie, 21; and son Jimmie D., 1.

In the 1930 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: Captain Rountree, 35, farm laborer; wife Lizzie, 28; children Jimmie D., 13, Viola, 10, Lossie, 9, Martha, 5, Surisa, 3, Will Jr., 2, and Annie M., 10 months.

In the 1940 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: farm laborer Calvin Roundtree, 40; wife Lizzie, 40; Viola, 19, Mathie, 15, Swaneebell, 13, Willie Jr., 12, Annie Mae, 9, Rosa Lee, 7, Calvin Jr., 6, Mavis, 4, and Doris, 1.

In 1940, Willie Junius Rountree registered for the World War II draft in Wilson County. Per his registration card, he was born 10 September 1928 in Wilson County; worked on the John Watson farm; and his contact was Calvin Rountree.

  • Lizzie Rountree

Lizzie Wife of Calvin Roundtree 1900 1974

Lizzie H. Rountree died 4 September 1974 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born 15 June 1906 to Simon Horne and Nancy Horne; was married to Calvin Rountree; and resided at 904 East Vance Street, Wilson.

  • Rev. Willie Darden

Rev. Willie Darden Son of Windsor and Mattie Born Jan. 24, 1895 Died June 13, 1941

In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farm laborer Winston Darden, 37; wife Mattie, 29; children George, 11, Jesse, 8, Willie, 5, William, 3, and Mattie, 1; and mother Mary Darden, 55.

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Finch Mill Road, Winsor Darden, 42; wife Mattie, 35; and children George, 22, Jesse, 16, Willie, 14, Winsor, 12, Charlie, 10, Olivia, 7, Annie M., 6, Leroy, 3, and Mattie, 8 months.

Willie Darden registered for the World War I draft in 1917. Per his draft registration card, he was born 23 January 1895 om Wilson County; lived at Route 2, Wilson; was single; and worked as a farm laborer for Frank Langley. He signed his name in full.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Willie Darden, 25; wife Victoria, 19; and son Junius, 2.

In the 1940 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farm laborer Willie Darden, 45; wife Victoria, 41; children Willie Jr., 22, Ettie May, 18, Gladys, 16, Dorthy, 14, James Arthur, 12, John, 11, R.T., 10, Remather, 8, Minnie, 6, Carolyne, 4, Percey, 1, and Mattie, 1; and lodger Willie Miller, 24.

  • Vinnie Wilson Rountree

Vinnie Wilson Roundtree March 8, 1900 July 4, 1972

On 31 August 1916, Freeman Rountree, 25, of Wilson, son of Wiley Rountree and Martha (last name not listed, married Vinie Wilson, 18, of Wilson, daughter of Tom Wilson and Anna Wilson. Rev. John A. Barnes, A.M.E.Z. minister, performed the ceremony in the presence of Jesse C. Lassiter, William Knight and Johnnie A. Barnes Jr.

In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Freeman Rountree, 29, and wife Viana, 20.

In the 1930 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Freeman Rountree, 37; wife Vinie, 30; and adopted son Eddie Bynum, 14.

In the 1940 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Freeman Roundtree, 49, born in Florida; wife Viney, 38; and cousin Paul, 18, farm helper.

Vinnie Wilson Roundtree died 4 July 1972 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born in 8 March 1898 to Tom Wilson and Anna Briggs; was a retired farmer; was widowed; and resided at 920 Poplar Street. Georgia Wilson, 706 Stantonsburg Street, was informant.

Photographs by Lisa Y. Henderson, May 2019.

Cemeteries, no. 24: the Barnes family.

We pulled over on the side of the highway here, got out and started trudging along the treeline. The ground was saturated from heavy winter rains, and I had not worn the right shoes. Nonetheless, we traipsed back and forth, looking for the Simon and Penninah Woodard Barnes cemetery.

Barnes/Woodard/Lassiter descendant Bernard Patterson had graciously offered to help me find it. However, the land is no longer family-owned, and he had not been there in many years. We did our best, but a thick growth of broomsedge, prickly smilax vines, and young trees prevented us from locating it.

Penninah was the daughter of London and Penelope Lassiter Woodard. She married Simon Barnes on 1 January 1877 in Wilson County, and they and several generations of their descendants are buried in a family graveyard located off what is now N.C. Highway 42. The photo of Pennie Barnes’ grave, below, was taken during a period in which the plot was cleared. Eastern North Carolina’s climate makes rural cemetery maintenance a serious challenge, especially when graves are located on private property far from paved roads and the cemetery is not in active use for burials.

Screen Shot 2019-02-20 at 8.29.50 PM.png

Thanks again to Bernard Patterson. Top photo by Lisa Y. Henderson, February 2019; bottom photo courtesy of Roger Barron.

 

Cemeteries, no. 23: the Taylor-Barnes cemetery.

Deborah Webb sent the tip a month ago — there was an abandoned graveyard off Webb Lake Road that contained the remains of an unknown African-American family. After my library talk Tuesday, I got some additional directions, and yesterday morning I set out it find it.

L. and T. Speight gave permission for me to park in their driveway and pointed out the copse out back. Standing in the middle of a turned-under corn field, such a stand of woods is a tell-tale sign of a cemetery.

It was a fight getting in. The smilax is ferocious. Breaking through though, I could see unmarked, subsided graves across the forest floor.

I saw no headstones, and only two graves bore small metal funeral home markers, meant to be temporary. The paper inserts identifying the dead were long gone.

Toward the back, there was a single vault. Its concrete and brick cover had collapsed at one end, exposing the interior. I did not disturb it to search for a name. Mr. Speight told me that the graveyard had been there when his grandfather bought the farm in 1938, that the last burial had been more than 30 years ago, and that he thought the family was named Barnes.

Wilson County Genealogical Society has published several volumes of transcribed cemetery records. I didn’t have access to my copies, so I consulted Joan Howell, the tireless spirit behind the project. She called me back this morning with an ID. This is the Aaron Barnes cemetery, first surveyed in 1991. It was overgrow even then, with only the vault and two metal markers visible among the 33 identifiable burial sites. Two graves bore names — Aaron Barnes (1888-1951) and Pattie J. Taylor, who died 3 January 1953 at age 16.

Here is Aaron Barnes’ death certificate:

Aaron Barnes had been a World War veteran, and his widow Martha Barnes applied for a military headstone for his grave:

Theirs was a late marriage. Aaron Barnes, 50, of Gardners township, son of Jarman and Mollie Barnes, married Martha Lancaster, 38, of Gardners, daughter of John D. and Susan Lancaster, on 3 November 1938 in Wilson.

Though the cemetery is called Taylor’s on Aaron Barnes’ records, and presumably most of the burials were of members of that family, I have not found information about young Pattie J. Taylor. However, Lillie Taylor died 17 January 1941 in Gardners township and, per her death certificate, she was born 6 January 1882; was married to James Taylor; was born in Wilson County to Jarman and Mollie Barnes; and was buried in Taylors cemetery near Elm City. Also, Lillie and James H. Taylor’s male infant was stillborn on 24 December 1917 in Gardners township and was buried at “Taylors place.”

Photographs by Lisa Y. Henderson, February 2019. Many thanks to Deborah Webb, L. and T. Speight, and Joan Howell.

Cemeteries, no. 22: John and Bettie Hinnant Jones family cemetery.

This small family cemetery is adjacent to the Sane Williams graveyard, described here.

The graves of John A. Jones and Bettie Hinnant Jones lie under two of the brick vault covers seen below.

——

In the 1880 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: Dempsy Powell, 52, farmer; wife Sallie, 46; daughter Susan A. Jones, 27, and her husband John A. Jones, 34; their children Thomas A., 13, Jessee B., 11, James A., 7, Celia C., 5, Sallie C., 4, and John A., 1; and W.D. Lucus, 21, laborer.

John A. Jones, 20, of Old Fields, son of John A. and Susan Jones, married Celia Williamson, 18, of Old Fields, daughter of Spencer and Senia Williamson, on 17 January 1898 at Jim Jones’.Witnesses included Thomas A. Jones.

In the 1900 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: farmer General V. Hinnant, 38; wife Martha A., 35; and children Alice V., 13, Minnie A., 12, Ezekiel, 11, Bettie J., 9, William V., 4, Oscar, 2, and Herman, 2.

In the 1910 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: farmer Vandorne Hinnant, 48; wife Betsy J., 46; and children Ezekial, 22, Bettie, 19, Willie, 13, Oscar, 12, Luther, 10, Regest W., 9, Roland, 8, Ralon, 6, Ollien, 4, and Roy E., 2.

J.A. Jones, 34, son of John A. and Susan Jones, of Old Fields, married Bettie Hinnant, 21, daughter of Vandorn and Janie Hinnant, of Springhill township, on 5 May 1912. Missionary Baptist minister William H. Mitchiner performed the ceremony at the Hinnant home.

In 1918, John Alce Jones registered for the World War I draft in Wilson County. Per his registration card, he resided at R.F.D.#1, Sims; was born 25 January 1897; was a self-employed farmer; and Bettie Jones was his nearest relative.

In the 1920 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: on Jones Hill Road, farmer J.A. Jones, 42; wife Bettie, 28; and children Johnie W., 16, Grover, 7, Susie, 5, Maomie, 4, and Ruth, 1.

In the 1930 census of Old Fields township, Wilson County: John A. Jones, 53, farmer wife Bettie J., 39; and children Grover L., 17, Sussie J., 15, Namie, 13, and Ruth, 11.

John Asley Jones died 21 April 1962 in Rocky Mount, Nash County. Per his death certificate, he was born 25 October 1878 in Wilson County to John Allen Jones and Susan Powell; was married to Betty Hinnant; was a retired farmer; and lived in Sims, Wilson County.

Bettye Hinnant Jones died 21 May 1866 in Enfield, Halifax County, North Carolina. Per her death certificate, she was born 2 February 1891 in Wilson County to Vandorn Hinnant and Martha Jane Horton; was widowed; and resided in Sims, Wilson County.

Photographs by Lisa Y. Henderson, October 2018.