migration to Pennsylvania

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

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

  • Albert Lee Hagans


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


  • Carrie Rountree Highsmith


  • Magnolia Boykin Henry


  • Annie Ferguson


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

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

  • Willie Taylor


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


  • Exum Creech


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



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


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.

Pennsylvania veteran’s comp benefits, no. 2.

Applications for Pennsylvania veteran’s compensation benefits filed by veterans born in Wilson County:

  • John Henry Latham


On 21 May 1912, John Latham of Elm City, 24, son of Isham and Winnie Latham, married Nina Gaston, 22, daughter of George A. and Pricilla Gaston in Elm City, Toisnot township.

  • Kinney Marcellous Merritt


In the 1900 census of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: at 1320 Wood Street, Solomon Merritt, 39, wife Amanda, 40, and sons Robert, 20, and Kinney, 16, all born in North Carolina.

  • David L. Pender


  • Dave Sharpton


Dave Sharpton registered for the World War I draft in Wilson County. His 1917 registration shows that he was born in 1890, but reports his birthplace as Augusta, Georgia. His occupation: “prisoner.” Sharpton signed his card with an X, but by 1934 he was confident enough to pen his signature.

  • Walter Tucker


In the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Jacob Tucker, 39, 40, wife Mary, 39, and children Doward, 17, Daniel, 15, Thomas, 13, Henry, 12, Smoot, 9, Walter, 7, Patience, 5, Joseph, 2, and Besse, 11 months.

Pennsylvania veteran’s comp benefits.

Applications for Pennsylvania veteran’s compensation benefits filed by veterans born in Wilson County:

  • Iredell Seward Allen


In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer James Allen, 27; wife Clara, 23; and children Howard, 7, Etta, 5, Clara, 4, Iredell, 3, and Dowell, 5 months.


  • Ben C. Bunn


  • Augustus Bynum


  • Jesse James Cox


  • Paul Farmer


In the 1900 census of Town of Wilson, Wilson township, Wilson County: wagon driver John W. Farmer, 37; wife Edmonia,  33; and children George, 13, Paul, 12, Annie, 9, Mary, 7, and Fannie, 5. Paul registered for the draft while living in Philadelphia,


but returned permanently to North Carolina after the war. In the 1930 census of Town of Wilson, Wilson township, Wilson County: Paul Farmer, 44, wife Cora, 35, and children Pauline, 4 1/2, Fredrick, 2, John W., 1 1/2, and lodger Harvey Wilson, 17.

  • George Alexander Gaston


In the 1900 census of Town of Wilson, Wilson township, North Carolina: 44 year-old barber John Gaston, [second] wife Sabrina, 22, and children Theodore, 13, Cicero, 10, George, 8, and Caroline, 2 months. Also in the Town of Wilson, 30 year-old divorcee Ella Gaston with sons Ralph, 10, and Albert, 2.

Pennsylvania, WWI Veterans Service and Compensation Files, 1917-1919, 1934-1948 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com; Pennsylvania, Veterans Burial Cards, 1777-2012 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com; U.S. World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

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

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

  • Hubert Barefoot


In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County, on Viola Street: 37 year-old oil mill laborer Wiley Barefoot, wife Maggie, 35, and children Linwood, 15, Mike, 14, Matha, 10, Essiemay, 3, Hubert, 4, and Angly B. Barefoot, 2. Maggie worked as a washerwoman, Linwood as a “prentice carpenter,” and Mike as an odd jobs laborer.

  • Michael Barefoot


Michael Barefoot was the brother of Hubert Barefoot, above. The death certificate of their father Wiley Barefoot, filed in 1952 in Wilson County, reveals their grandparents to have been Michael and Caroline Barnes Barefoot.

  • George Barnes


  • James A. Barnes


  • Julius Barnes



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

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

  • James I. Allen, Philadelphia


James I. Allen appears in the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County, with parents West and Harriet Allen; siblings Boston, Susan, Cornelius, John, Lettice and Effie Allen; and grandmother Harriet Allen.

James I Allen

1880 census, Wilson, Wilson County.

In 1894, James Allen and Clara Brown, below, were married by a Missionary Baptist minister in Wilson.


  • Clara Brown Allen, Philadelphia


  • William Anderson, Philadelphia


  • James Artis, Whitesboro, New Jersey


Per Wikipedia, “Whitesboro [New Jersey] was founded about 1901 by the Equitable Industrial Association, which had prominent black American investors including Paul Laurence Dunbar, the educator Booker T. Washington and George Henry White, the leading investor and namesake. He was an attorney who had moved to Philadelphia after serving as the last black Republican congressman representing North Carolina’s 2nd congressional district. White and his fellow entrepreneurs wanted to create a self-reliant community for blacks, without the discrimination faced the southern states. Shares in the planned community were sold to African Americans from North and South Carolina and Virginia.” Samuel H. Vick was an investor in Whitesboro.

  • Warren Barnes, Johnston, Cambria County


This is possibly the five year-old Warren Barnes listed in the household of Peter, 32, and Lizzie Barnes, 34, in the 1880 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County.