In 1933, William Hines expanded his personal grooming business to include a beauty parlor at 130 South Goldsboro Street. Mattie Royal managed the shop, and my strong assumption is that, like his barber shop, it catered to a white clientele.
Josiah Vick died in Nash County circa 1846. This detail from an “acct. of sale & Hire of Negroes” prepared by Vick’s administrator Benjamin H. Blount shows that Joshua Barnes purchased several enslaved people — Simeon; Lettice, her children Hines and Madison; and Jane — from Vick’s estate.
The connections between large slaveowners in Nash, Edgecombe, and (later) Wilson Counties formed a dense web, with surprising echoes decades later among Wilson’s African-American elite:
Josiah Vick’s daughter Susan Margaret Vick married John Routh Mercer of Temperance Hall in Edgecombe County. Mercer likely enslaved a child named Della and her mother Callie; Mercer is believed to have been Della’s biological father. Della Mercer Hines‘ first two sons were William Hines and Walter S. Hines, neighbors and business contemporaries of Samuel H. Vick. In 1894, Della Hines married David Barnes, who had been enslaved in childhood by Joshua Barnes. Dave and Della Barnes’ youngest son Boisey O. Barnes was a prominent physician in Wilson.
Daniel, Fannie, and Samuel Vick, and Della and Dave Barnes are buried in Odd Fellows Cemetery, which was established around what was originally the Vick family cemetery. Benjamin Mincey, famed leader of the all-Black Red Hot Hose and Reel volunteer firemen, is also buried in Odd Fellows. Madison Barnes, sold as a boy to Joshua Barnes, was Ben Mincey’s father-in-law and the namesake of Madison Ben Mincey, who worked for decades to keep the cemetery clear.
Lettice and her sons Hines and Madison
On 9 September 1868, Madison Barnes, son of Ephraim Booses and Lettice Parker, married Mariah Strickland, daughter of Henry Strickland and Frances Strickland, at the Wilson County Courthouse.
In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Hines Barnes, 30, farm laborer.
Ben Mincey, 21, of Wilson, son of P. Mincey, and Mattie Barnes, 20, of Wilson, daughter of M. and Mariah Barnes, were married on 12 January 1904. Berry Williams applied for the license, and Baptist minister Fred M. Davis performed the ceremony in his home in the presence of Harry Mercer, W. Aken, and E.M. Davis.
On 6 June 1907, Madison Barnes, 50, son of Eaton Booze and Lettice Harper, married Caroline Stewart, 40, in Wilson. A.M.E. Zion minister N.D. King performed the ceremony in the presence of Charles Thomas, Alfred Dew, and Eugene Canady.
On 7 September 1908, Lula Barnes, 17, of Wilson, daughter of Madison Barnes and a deceased mother, married William Donnell, 22, of Stantonsburg, son of Hamp Donnell, at the bride’s residence.
On 24 December 1919, Madison Barnes, 64, applied for a license to marry Dollie Barnes, 54.
In the 1920 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Saratoga Road, farm laborer Madison Barnes, 70; wife Dollie Ann, 53; and granddaughter Annie V. Vick, 8.
Madison Barnes died 18 September 1934 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was 90 years old; was born in Nash County to unknown parents; was a widower; and had worked as a laborer. Lillie Mitchell was informant.
Wilson Daily Times, 22 September 1934.
Lillie Mitchell died 11 January 1936 in Wilson township. Per her death certificate, she was 42 years old; was born in Wilson to Madison Barnes and Mariah Barnes; was married to Henry Mitchell; and worked as a farmer.
Edward Barnes died 20 February 1945 in Wilson township. Per his death certificate, he was 49 years old; was born in Wilson County to Madison Barnes and Mariah Strickland; was married to Lula Barnes; was engaged in farming; and was buried din Roundtree cemetery.
Mattie Barnes Mincey died 9 February 1960 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, she was born 15 December 1886 in Wilson to Madison Barnes and Mariah [maiden name unknown]; was a widow; lived at 706 Wiggins Street; and was buried at Rountree Cemetery. [If she is buried with her husband and his family, Mattie Barnes Mincey is actually buried in Odd Fellows.]
On an unstated date in 1915, David Hines, 23, of Green County, N.C., son of Carrie Hines, married Julia A. Best, 23, daughter of Tom and Lizzie Best, at the “Patret Place” [D.W. Patrick’s farm] near Snow Hill, Greene County.
Toney Hines died 3 April 1917 in Olds township, Greene County. Per his death certificate, he was born 2 April 1917 in Greene County to David Hines of Pamlico County and Julia Ann Best of Greene County; and was buried on the D.W. Patrick farm.
George Washington Hines died 29 June 1919 in Beaver Dam township, Pitt County, N.C. Per his death certificate, he was born 16 June 1919 in Pitt County to David Hines of Pitt County and Julie Best of Greene County; and was buried on the D. Patrick farm.
In the 1930 census of Cross Roads township, Wilson County: farmer David Hines, 46; wife Julia, 37; daughter Mary E., 9; and lodger Elijah Jones, 20.
In the 1940 census of Cross Roads township, Wilson County: farmhand David Hines, 56; wife Julia Anne, 46, cook; daughter Mary Elizabeth, 19; and farmhand Jeana Ionia Mainer, 16, lodger.
David Hines died 11 October 1949 in Mercy Hospital, Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 13 May 1893 in Pamlico County, N.C., to Benjamin Hines and Carrie [maiden name unknown]; was married; worked as a laborer; and lived in Lucama, Wilson County.
In the 1950 census of Wilson, Wilson County: cook Maggie L. Ward, 38; cook Ida Mae, 35; sister Annie, 20, maid; sister Addie, 15; brother Vertice B., 14; nephew Thurman Barnes, 14; and nieces Mable Barnes, 18, and Patricia A. Ward, 1.
V. Bruce Ward
Wilson Daily Times, 7 October 1950.
Vertice Bruce Ward was the uncle of Therman G. Barnes, above.
The obituary of Walter Scott Hines contains unusually detailed information about his career. He and his brother William Hines operated competing barber shops and built rental housing across East Wilson.
Wilson Daily Times, 9 August 1941.
Walter D. Hines presented his father’s will to the clerk of court to file for probate, swearing that he had found the document, drafted in 1924 “among the valuable papers and effects of … Walter S. Hines … within a certain iron safe having a combination lock, which was situated in Walter S. Hines’ home ….”
Wilson Daily Times, 12 August 1941.
In the 1880 census of Cocoa township, Edgecombe County: Joshua Hines, 52; wife Cally, 47; children Jerry, 20, Deller, 22, Lizer, 17, Joshua, 15, Caliph, 13, William, 11, Robert, 7, and Adline, 4; nephew Allen Harris, 3; and grandson Walter, 1 [Della’s son.]
In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County:hotel porter Dave Barnes, 40; wife Della; and children Walter, 20, William, 15, Lucy, 13, Dave, 5, and Viola, 11. [Walter,William, and Lucy were, in fact, Hineses and were Della Hines Barnes’ children.]
In 1918, Walter Scott Hines registered for the World War II draft in Wilson. Per his registration card, he was born 26 October 1879; lived at 616 Green Street; worked as a barber at Tate & Hines; and his nearest relative was Sarah E. Hines. He was described as tall and slender, with blue eyes and black hair.
In the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: barber Walter Hines, 40, wife Sara, 37, Elizabeth, 11, Walter Jr., 10, and Carl, 5.
In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: barber Walter Hines, 50, wife Sarah, 48, and children Elizabeth, 21, Walter, 20, Carl W., 16, and Clifton R., 7.
In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Walter S. Hines, 60; wife Sarah E., 58; son Carl W., 24, teacher; son’s wife Ruth, 23, teacher; and son Ray W., 17.
Walter Scott Hines died 9 July 1941 at Mercy Hospital, Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 24 October 1879 in Edgecombe County, N.C., to Walter S. Parker and Della Hines; and lived at 617 East Green Street, Wilson. His brother, Dr. B.O. Barnes, was the certifying physician.
I wrote here of the memoir of long-time Darden High School principal Edward M. Barnes. At the time, I believed the pink booklet to be a one-off tribute published by Darden High School Alumni Association. However, on a recent visit to Sallie B. Howard School, I was introduced to an entire library of these works spanning multiple literary genres — written, edited, and published in the 1980s and ’90s by Mrs. Howard for use in the Youth Enrichment Program.
I was particularly interested in this booklet, and Dr. JoAnne Woodard generously offered me a copy. William Hines seems scarcely remembered now, but was for nearly three-quarters of the twentieth century arguably Wilson’s most civically engaged African-American citizen.
The booklet is organized in a series of Mrs. Howard’s recollections. William Hines was her family’s landlord, and her earliest memories involve the house at 1011 Washington Street.
“… [W]hen we moved into his tenant house in 1935 or ’36, it was the first house we had ever lived in with electricity and an ‘inside’ toilet! We felt extremely fortunate as many of Wilson’s tenant houses did not have such accommodations.”
“How well I remember this neat little four-room house …. It sat so near the sidewalk there was hardly room to frow flowers in the front. In fact, the front porch steps were practically on the sidewalk itself! This, however, was not unusual as many houses were similarly situated during that time. I suppose the rationale of the builders was to leave room in the back so that the residents could plant gardens if they so desired. And in those lean days — nearly everyone desired!”
“Mr. Hines owned many houses all over Wilson. He also owned his own barber shop where he employed as many as 12 barbers. The house we lived in sat right across the street from others who also owned their own homes. I remember my mother being highly impressed by the green striped awnings of some of these homeowner neighbors. Each summer they would lower these pretty awnings in order to shade their front porches. …”
“I also remember Mr. Hines as one of the donors of cash awards to students who excelled in various subjects at Darden High. Money was hard to come by in those days, and I for one worked hard to capture one of these cash prizes.”
“About 1942, I was a patient at Mercy Hospital on E. Green St. It was said that Mr. Hines was one of the persons who secured the funds from the Duke Endowment for the operations of this hospital. He was the Administrator at the time I was a patient. Practically every morning he would come into the war and say a little something to the patients.”
” … my high school days were filled with priceless memories: the parties, the basketball games held in heatless warehouses (I don’t remember feeling cold!); the football games played in the snow and slush in back of Darden High (I don’t remember feeling cold!); the Junior-Senior proms held on the 3rd floor of the old Vick casino (walk up!); the many concerts and dramas given by our school etc. …”
“Mr. Hines was one of the founders of the Men’s Civic Club. And it was this distinguished group of men who finally succeeded in getting a recreational facility for our community. Today, this facility is known as the Reid Street Center. Now the Black Community had a brand new place in which to house their various activities. How well I remember the Big Bands that played in our new facility. …”
William and Ethel Cornwell Hines in photo reproduced from booklet.
The path to building Reid Street Community Center was a rocky one. As reported in September 1937, African-American community leaders, headed by William Hines, appeared repeatedly before Wilson’s Board of Aldermen (the precursor to City Council) seeking help. To match federal funds, the group requested $7500 to add to another $7500 they hoped to receive from the county. When the county declined to approve the funds, the group returned to the city to ask for the $7500 outright to build a scaled-down building. “The request was voted down by the Aldermen last night on the grounds that the appropriation the town had made was contingent on the county’s appropriation and that there seemed to be some doubt anyway whether the town even could appropriate the money.”