migration to Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania prisoners.

  • Bud Wright

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Bud Wright was convicted in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, of “assault and battery to kill” in February 1921 and sentenced to five to seven years. Per his prison record, he was born in Wilson on 26 February 1892; worked as a laborer; was illiterate, having dropped out of third grade at age 12; left home at age 12; occasionally drank to excess; was married with no children; had 26 cents in cash, one pocketbook, and four keys; and his wife Rosie Wright lived at 732 Siegel Street, Philadelphia.

  • William Hall

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William Hall was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced 25 June 1924 in Philadelphia to six to twelve years. Per his prison record, he was born 4 September 1894 in Wilson; had a patch of white hair (a birthmark) above his left eyebrow; worked as a bell boy; left home at age 14; was Baptist; was unmarried; had two shirts and two sleeve buttons; and his sister Ella Wilcher lived at 2424 Oxford Street, Philadelphia.

Hall’s record included a card recording his Bertillon measurements, an early system of criminal identification.

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  • James Foreman

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James Former, alias James Henry Forman, was convicted of larceny and sentenced 11 October 1919 in Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania, to one to three years. Per his prison record, he was born 8 May 1895 in Wilson; occasionally drank too much; worked as a bell boy; left school at age 12 and left home at age 18; was married with no children; had one money belt; and his mother Anna Forman lived at 205 Spruce Street, Wilson.

  • Samuel Ennis

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Samuel Ennis was convicted of assault and battery and aggravated assault and battery and sentenced 2 October 1928 in Philadelphia to two to four years. Per his prison record, he was born 10 March 1890 in Wilson; worked as a laborer; completed the fourth grade; left home at age 15; was Baptist; was unmarried; had 15 cents, one carfare carrier and one key on a ring; and his sister Gertrude Brodie lived at 802 Green Street, Wilson.

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Gertrude Ennis, 18, of Wilson, daughter of Tom and Mariah Ennis, married George Broddie, 21, son of Thornton and Lizzie Brodie, on 15 February 1903 in Wilson. Missionary Baptist minister Fred M. Davis performed the ceremony at Ed McCullers‘ residence in the presence of Ellen Brodie, Ione Holden and Eddie McCullers.

Pennsylvania, Prison, Reformatory, and Workhouse Records, 1829-1971, http://www.ancestry.com.

Snaps, no. 21: Charles William Hagans.

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Charles Hagans

Charles William Hagans (1883-1949), son of Lawrence and Mary Etta Pender Hagans.

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In the 1900 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Larnce Haggan, 49, wife Etha, 44, and children Joe, 21, Augustus, 19, Oscar, 18, Charlie, 16, Annie, 13, Connie, 10, Lena, 8, Mollie, 7, William L., 4, Minnie, 3, and Pattie, 1, and Lawrence’s widowed mother Alice Hagans, 70.

In the 1920 census of Beaver Falls, Beaver County, Pennsylvania: at 1315 Seventh Avenue, Charles Hagen, 35, self-employed barber; wife Gertrude, 36; lodger London Broady, 32, barber; and nephew Raymond Hartzell, 30, garage mechanic. Charles was born in North Carolina; Gertrude and Raymond in Ohio; and London in Virginia.

Report to the 1920 census notwithstanding, C. William Hagans and Amanda G. Nichols were not married until 25 January 1921, when they wed in Summit County. Ohio. Per their marriage license, Hagans was born 9 April 1884 in Wilson County, N.C., to Lawrence Hagans and Mary Gray; worked as a barber; and lived at 28 Arch Street, Barberton, Ohio. Amanda G. Nichols was born 23 November 1883 in Chillicothe, Ohio, to Robert R. Hackley and Julia Adams, and had been married once before.

In 1921, Gertrude Hagans purchased an ad in The Tiger, the Beaver Falls High School yearbook:

On 1 July 1927, Charles W. Hagans was sentenced to serve one year in the Allegheny County Workhouse on a conviction for unspecified liquor law violations. A register shows that he reported 7 July 1927; was 43 years old; was born in North Carolina; was of medium complexion with black hair and brown eyes; was 5’8″, weighed 160 pounds at entry at 174 at release; was a barber (and worked as same while incarcerated); and was a Methodist. He was released early — on 30 April 1928.

In the 1930 census of Battle Creek, Calhoun County, Michigan: at 148 Roseneath, rented for $35/month, barber Charles W. Hagans, 45, born in North Carolina; wife Gertrude M., 46, born in Ohio; and lodgers John Young, 30, drugstore porter, born in Pennsylvania; and Harry Godbolt, 46, barber, born in South Carolina.

In the 1940 census of Battle Creek, Calhoun County, Michigan:  at 101 Glenurban Avenue, barber Charles W. Hagans, 56, born in North Carolina; wife Gertrude, 56, born in Ohio; and lodgers Taswell Buckner, 50, insect and rodent exterminator, born in Alabama, and Harry Godbolt, 55, laborer on city streets, born in South Carolina.

In 1942, Charles William Hagans registered for the World War II draft in Calhoun County, Michigan. Per his registration card, he was born 9 April 1884 in Wilson County, North Carolina; resided at 36 North Wood, Battle Creek, Calhoun County; and his contact and employer was George Anderson, 56 1/2 Capital S.W., Battle Creek.

Charles W. Hagans died 11 November 1943 in Battle Creek, Calhoun County, Michigan. Per his death certificate, he was born 9 April 1884 in Wilson, North Carolina, to Lawrence W. Hagans.

Gertrude Marie Hagans died 5 October 1948 in Battle Creek. Per her death certificate, she was born 1891 in Chillicithe, Ohio, to James Hockley.

Charles and Gertrude Hagans are buried in Rest Haven cemetery, Wilson.

Photos courtesy of Ancestry.com user TeiaHarper1; U.S. School Yearbooks, 1900-1990, database on-line at Ancestry.com; Allegheny County Workhouse, Pennsylvania Prison, Reformatory and Workhouse Records, 1829-1971, database on-line at Ancestry.com.

Where did they go?: Pennsylvania death certificates, no. 7.

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

  • Minnie McCowan Brown

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In the 1870 census of Wilson, Wilson County: widow Anna McGown, 35, washerwoman; and children William, 16, Emma, 15, Bettie, 13, Margaret, 8, Charles, 6, and Samuel, 2.

  • Matilda Roberts Battle

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In the 1910 census of Suffolk, Virginia: furniture salesman W.M. Roberts, 37; wife Sally, 32; and children Leroy, 12, Matilda, 7, Sally A., 4, and Bessie May, 2, all born in North Carolina.

  • Emma Ellis Bunn

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In the 1870 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: Hilliard Ellis, 43, farmer; wife Feribee, 40; and children Caroline, 16, William, 14, George, 11, Emily, 9, Hilliard, 6, Mary A., 4, and Warren, 8 months.

  • Benjamin Edward Earle

  • Harvey Chesterfield Dasher

Per an index of delayed birth certificates, Harvey Chesterfield Dasher was born in 1902 in Wilson County to Charles Dasher and Carrie Pitts.

In the 1920 census of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, Ohio: at 2403 East 39th Street, pullman porter Harvey C. Dasher, 36, born in New York; wife Carrie, 34, born in North Carolina; son Harvey Jr., 17, department store elevator operator, born in North Carolina; and lodger Hattie Johnson, 42, born in North Carolina.

In the 1930 census of Manhattan, New York County, New York: dining car waiter Harry Newsome, 39; wife Carrie, 43; and son Harvey Dasher, 25, barber; all born in Virginia.

In the 1940 census of Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts: in the state prison, Harvey Dasher, 38, born in North Carolina.

 

Where did they go?: Pennsylvania death certificates, no. 6.

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

  •  Clarence Bullock

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In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Georgia-born day laborer Will Bullock, 29; wife Martha, 27; and son Clarence W., 2, and Walter N., 8 months; half-siblings Alice, 12, and Mack Scott, 10; and boarder Will Bullock, 29.

  • Pearl E. Lindsey Carr

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In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: widowed schoolteacher Ida Lindsay, 30, and children Pearl, 8, Clara, 6, and Joseph, 4.

  • Mary Reid Chambliss

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  • George Clarke

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  • Edgar Edwards

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Shaw badly wounded.

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Wilson Daily Times, 15 October 1918.

In the 1900 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: Spencer Shaw, 40, wife Tabitha, 41, and children George A., 17, James R., 11, Hattie, 9, Joeseph G., 6, Seth T., 5, and Albert S., 2.

In the 1910 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: on Wilson and Raleigh Branch Road, Spencer Shaw, 51, wife Bitha, 49, and children James R., 21, Joseph T., 16, Seth T.,14, Albert S., 11, Merlin S., 9, Willie H., 7, and Alice M., 5.

In 1918, Seth Thomas Shaw Jr. registered for the World War I draft in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Per his registration card, he resided at 3631 Warren Street, Philadelphia, and worked for Eddystone Ammunition Company, Eddystone, Pennsylvania.

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Seth T. Shaw’s military discharge card.

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Seth T. Shaw’s application for a Victory Medal, filed 20 June 1921.

In the 1930 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: on Buckhorn [illegible] Road, Spencer S. Shaw, 70, wife Bytha J., 70, sons William H., 24, and Seth T., 34, daughter-in-law Georgeanna, 24, and grandchildren Alice M., 4, Seth T., 2, and Franklin S., 6 months.

In 1934, Shaw applied for veteran’s compensation for war injuries resulting from a gunshot wound to the arm suffered in fighting in the Vosges Mountains of France. (Note that pharmacist Darcey C. Yancey notarized his application.)

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In the 1940 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: Seth T. Shaw, 44, wife Georgiana, 34, mother Bitha, 79, and children Alice M., 14, Seth T., 12, Franklin G., 10, George C., 7, Daisy May, 5, and James C., 3.

Seth T. Shaw died 22 December 1981 at a Veterans Administration hospital in Salem, Virginia. Per his death certificate, he was born 15 November 1895 in North Carolina in Spencer Shaw and Bitha Richardson; was married to Georgia Shaw; and worked as a farmer.

Pennsylvania WWI Veterans Service and Compensation Files, 1917-1919, 1934-1948, www.ancestry.com; 

 

Students at the colored orphanage.

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For “School Session September 1929 to May 1929,” the Roster of Students for the Oxford Colored Orphanage listed six children from Wilson: Madell Moore; Julian and Joseph Covington; and Dempsey, Malachi and Kurfew Ward.

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  • Madell Moore — in the 1930 census of Fishing Creek township, Granville County, Maedall Moore, 9, is listed as an inmate of the Oxford Colored Orphanage of North Carolina.
  • Julian Covington
  • Joseph Covington
  • Dempsey Ward — in the 1920 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 703 Viola Street, house carpenter Jessie Ward, 36; wife Mary, 34; and children Mabel, 17, Gertrude, 12, Kerfus, 7, Malachi, 5, Dempsey, 3, Virginia, 2, and Sara, 1 month. In the 1930 census of Fishing Creek township, Granville County, Dempsey Ward, 14, farm laborer, is listed as an inmate of the Oxford Colored Orphanage of North Carolina. (Neither his brothers nor the Covingtons are listed.)
  • Malachi Ward — Malachi Ward died 14 February 1963 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Per his death certificate, he was born 12 November 1919 in Wilson, N.C., to Jesse Ward and Mary Sherrod; he resided at 2819 North 11th Street, Philadelphia; and he worked as a barber. Kerfew Ward of Compton, California, was informant.
  • Kurfew Ward — Kurfew Melvin Ward was born 17 December 1912 in Wayne County, North Carolina. On 15 September 1937, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, issued a marriage license for Kurfew M. Ward, 24, and Elizabeth Brown, 19, both residents of Pittsburgh. Per their application, Wars was born 17 December 1912 to Jesse Ward and Mary Sheard, both dead; was from Wilson, N.C.; worked as a laborer; and lived at 621 Whittier. Brown resided at 107 Pugh and was the daughter of Earl Brown of Pittsburgh and Blanche Brown of Virginia. In the 1954 city directory of Compton, California: Kerfew M. Ward, plasterer, with Elizabeth J. Ward. Kurfew M. Ward died 4 July 1970 in Los Angeles, California.

Annual Reports of the Colored Orphanage Oxford, N.C. is available at https://archive.org/details/reporttoboardofd19201944.

Where did they go?: out-of-state obituaries, no. 1.

Lula B. Moody, The Morning Call (Allentown, Pennsylvania), 3 July 2000.

Lula B. Moody, 81, of 131 S. 6th St., Allentown, died Saturday, July 1, in her home. She was the wife of Edward Moody. Born in Wilson, N.C., she was a daughter of the late William and Ora (Wells) Grantham. She was a member of Union Baptist Church, Allentown. She was a member of the Negro Cultural Center, Allentown, and was formerly a Cub Scout Den mother for Pack 98, Allentown. Survivors: Husband; sons, Albert Johnson of Philadelphia, Edward Jr. of Bradford, McKean County, William H. of York, York County; daughters, Orabell, wife of Sandy Owens, Millicent Turner, and Shirley, all of Allentown, Addie Elure of Columbia, S.C., Gladys, wife of Daniel Parsons, with whom she resided; 26 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren and six great-great-grandchildren.

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On 4 February 1905, William Grantham, 25, of Toisnot township, son of William and J. Grantham of Wayne County, married Ola Wells, 22, of Toisnot township, daughter of Creecie Wells, in Toisnot township.

 

Where did they go?: Pennsylvania death certificates, no. 4.

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

  • Albert Lee Hagans

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On 20 January 1915, Lee Hagans, 21, son of Briscoe and Vesta Hagans, and Maggie Croom, 20, daughter of John and Phyllis Croom, in Wilson township. Witnesses were Willie Hunt, Moses Dew and William Pitt. As late as 1940, the family remained in North Carolina. In the 1940 census of Great Swamp township, Wilson County: farm laborer Lee Albert Hagans, 46, wife Maggie, 41, and children Richard, 20, Jesse James, 19, Addie May, 16, Gladys M., 14, Mildren C., 12, and Biscoe, 9.

  • Mary Godfrey Brothers

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  • Carrie Rountree Highsmith

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  • Magnolia Boykin Henry

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  • Annie Ferguson

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

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

  • Willie Taylor

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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

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  • Exum Creech

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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

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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

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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.