Sharpe

The estate of Wilson Sharpe.

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Wilson Sharpe died without a will in late 1900, and the Court appointed Samuel H. Vick and Braswell R. Winstead to assist as commissioners in the handling of his estate.

Sharpe’s sole heir was his widow Cherry Sharpe, who was entitled to an immediate portion of his assets for her support. There was not much; she received an old buggy and harness, an old gun, some cart wheels, and pile of old tools. This being insufficient, on 15 January 1901 the commissioners reclaimed property that T.R. Lamm had taken, presumably to settle a debt — a forty-dollar mule, eight hogs, and $25 worth of corn and fodder.

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In the 1870 census of Taylors township, Wilson County: farm laborer Wilson Sharp,42, and wife Cherry, 27.

In the 1880 census of Taylors township, Wilson County: farmer Wilson Sharp, 52; wife Cherry, 45; nephew Jerry Bynum, 6; and James Mitchel, 47, with wife Rosa, 33, and son James G., 11.

In the 1900 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farmer Wilson Sharp, 65; wife Cherry, 40; and children Willie, 16, Eva, 9, and Besse, 2 months. [These were likely foster children.]

In the 1910 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: on Tilman’s Road, widowed farm laborer Cherry Sharp, 65, living alone.

Images of estate documents available at North Carolina Wills and Estates, 1665-1998 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

Snaps, no. 46: James Sharpe.

James Sharpe (1872-1961).

In the 1880 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Oren Sharp, 26; wife Debby, 25; and children Lary J., 2, Thomas, 4 months, and James, 8. [The order of listing of the children suggests that James was Debby’s son and Orren’s stepson.]

On 18 May 1892, James Sharp, 19, married Annie Gear, 15, both of Gardners township, in Gardners township.

On 24 November 1897, Jim Sharp, 24, son of Bill Thomas and Deby Sharp, married Bettie Bullock, 21, daughter of Josh Batts and Harriett Bullock (resident of Arkansas), both of Gardners, at the house of Lottie Bullock, Gardners township.

In the 1900 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer James Sharpe, 28; wife Bettie, 25; and children Sarah, 7, Minnie, 4, Sonnie, 2, and Yetta, 7 months.

In the 1910 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: on the Plank Road, farmer Jim Sharp, 38; wife Bettie, 35; and children Sarah, 15, Sunny, 13, Etta, 12, Mary, 10, Mahala, 9, Jimmie, 7, Della, 5, Bettie, 3, and Annie, 2.

In the 1920 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: on the Tarboro Road, farmer James Sharp, 47; wife Bettie, 40; and children Sonnie, 21, Effie, 18, Mahaly, 17, Jimmie, 15, Dolena, 14, Annie, 13, Bettie, 12, and Willie, 7.

In the 1930 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Jim Sharp, 57; wife Bettie, 52; children Sunny, 30; Bettie M., 18, and Willie, 15.

Darlena Hillard died 9 June 1934 in Wilson township, Wilson County. Per her death certificate, she was 27 years old; was married; and was born in Wilson County to Jim Sharp and Bettie Bullock.

Bettie Sharpe died 17 July 1935 in Wilson township, Wilson County. Per her death certificate, she was 60 years old; married to James Sharpe; and was born in Edgecombe County to Joshua Batts of Wilson and Tillie Faison of Faison, N.C.

Sunny Sharp died 31 October 1937 in Elm City, Toisnot township, Wilson County. Per his death certificate, married to Lizzie Sharpe; was 40 years old; was a farmer; was born in Wilson County to Jim Sharpe and Bettie Bullock. Informant was Effie Ruffin of Wilson.

Etta Braswell died 26 March 1939 in Elm City, Toisnot township, Wilson County. Per her death certificate, she was about 40 years old; was born in Wilson County to Jim Sharp and Bettie Batts; was married to Frank Braswell; and was engaged in farming.

Annie Lee Batts died 5 November 1961 in Elm City, Toisnot township, Wilson County. Per her death certificate, she was born 1 June 1921 [sic] in Wilson County to James Sharpe and Bettie E. Batts and was married to Josh Batts.

James Sharpe died 20 October 1970 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 2 February 1906 to James Sharpe Sr. and Betty Elizabeth Bullock; was married to Ruth Tilman; resided in Elm City; and was a farmer.

Photo courtesy of Ancestry.com user GeraldNelson31. Per his family tree, James Sharpe died in 1961. I have not found a death certificate.

The obituary of Ada Harris Reid Sharpe, 101.

Ada H. Sharpe, of Charlotte, born December 5, 1908 in Wilson County, NC, died peacefully at Sunrise Senior Living Facility, August 21, 2010 – just 3 1/2 months short of her 102nd birthday. A graduate of Fayetteville State teachers College, she taught primary grades in several of Wilson County’s two-room Rosenwald Schools and the first of its three Black consolidated high schools, Speight, for over 39 years. Moreover, she was active in numerous civic organizations, a member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority and volunteered at OIC and Wilson Memorial Hospital for over 12 years after retirement.

God blessed her marital union in 1933 with Willie Gorham Reid, Sr. (died 1963), a successful barber, with 1 son, Rev. Dr. Willie Gorham Reid, Jr., a Presbyterian minister, who preceded her in death in 1990. In 1972 she married a successful farmer, entrepreneur, financier and well-known civil rights activist Mark B. Sharpe (died in 2009 at age 98); from this union she gained 9 adopted children – Barbara, Rudolph, Eugene, Trumilla, Dorothy, Earnestine, Betty, David, and Gail, who died in 1995. It was providential that she taught Mark’s 7 older children in primary school and had the joy of also nurturing and mothering them in their adult life. A praying and deeply spiritual servant-teacher for God, she was the oldest living member of Jackson Chapel Baptist Church, having been baptized there over 73 years ago by Rev. B.F. Jordan. In 2005 when she and Mark moved to Sunrise Assisted Living in Charlotte, they chose to become members of Indian Hill A.M.E. Zion Church, and their daughter, the Rev. Dr. Dorothy Sharpe Johnson, became their pastor. Other living relatives include a nephew, Theodore (Estelle) Artis; a niece, Minister Jacqueline (Earl) Hill; many cousins, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and great-grandchildren.

Mrs. Sharpe’s memorial service will be held at Long and Son Mortuary Chapel, 2312 Beatties Ford Road, Wednesday, 7-8 p.m. The funeral will be held at Jackson Chapel Baptist Church in Wilson, corner of Nash and Pender Streets, Thursday, with her pastor, Dr. Dorothy S. Johnson, preaching the eulogy. The visitation hour will be from 11-12 noon and the burial will be in Rest Haven Cemetery.

Published in Charlotte Observer, 23 August 2010. Obituary online here.

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In the 1910 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Leander Harris, 24, wife Lucy, 27, and daughter Ada, 1.

In the 1920 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Leander Harris, 33; wife Lucy, 35; and daughters Ada, 11, Rosa, 9, Daisy, 7, and Ida, 5.

In the 1930 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer Leander Harris, 44; wife Lucy, 48; and daughters Ada E., 21, schoolteacher, Rosa, 20, Davie, 18, and Ida, 15.

On 30 November 1933, Gorham Reid, 30, of Greene County, son of Bill and Bettie Reid, married Ada Harriss, 25, of Black Creek, daughter of Leander and Rosa Harriss. Elder Primitive Baptist minister Paul Bunch performed the ceremony at L.H. Harriss’ in the presence of David Bynum, G.S. Woodard and S.L. Woodard.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: barber Willie Reid, 36, and wife Ada, 31, schoolteacher.

 

Cemeteries, no. 13: the Sharpe cemetery.

At the Wilson-Edgecombe line, the blacktop rounds a curve and changes abruptly from Wilson County Road to Shallingtons Mill Road. Atop the bank, just inside Wilson County, is a narrow cemetery wedged between a soybean field and the road. This is the burial ground of the Allen Sharpe family on, presumably, land that once belonged to Sharpes.

  • Allen and Mary A. Sharpe

In the 1900 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Mary J. Forbes, 54, and children Meddis(?), 33, Homer, 31, Vernie B., 14, Ida M., 13, and Mary L., 3; plus farm laborer/servant Allen Sharpe, 21.

On 10 October 1900, Allen Sharpe, 24, son of Abram and Carolin Sharp, married Mary A. Barron, 17, daughter of Mark and Mason Barron, in Wilson County.

In the 1910 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: on Rocky Mount Road, Allen Sharpe, 31; wife Mary, 26; and children Cora, 9, Carrie, 8, John, 5, Nettie, 3, Martha, 2, and Peter, 3 months; plus, John Smith, 25.

In the 1920 census of Lower Town Creek township, Edgecombe County: on the public road from Tarboro to Stantonsburg, farm laborer Allen Sharpe, 43; wife Mary A., 38; children Carrie, 17, John, 14, Nettie, 12, Beatrice, 10, Peter, 9, Mark, 8, Bertha, 5, Ethel Branch, 3, and niece Dora, 19,

In the 1930 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Allen Sharpe, 56; wife Mary A., 47; children Carrie, 25, Nettie, 22, Peter, 19, Mark, 17, Bertha, 15, Blanche, 13,  Senie, 11, and Odell Sharp, 8; plus grandchildren Roosivilt, 7, and Minnie Howard, 4.

Allen Sharpe died 24 January 1946 in Gardners township, Wilson County. Per his death certificate, he was born 10 April 1888 [actually, probably 1878] in Edgecombe County to Abram and Mary Sharpe and resided near Macclesfield, Wilson County. [Note that Macclesfield itself is in Edgecombe County.]

  • Mark B. and Clara Farmer Sharpe

Mark B. Sharpe, here.

In the 1930 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Cromwell Farmer, 57; wife Mary Jane, 48; and children James, 22, Ida, 20, Cromwell, 19, Ella, 17, Maggie, 16, Clara, 14, Floyd, 12, Viola and Liola, 9, Esther, 8, Lee A., 7, and George, 6.

On 15 March 1937, Mark Sharpe, 25, of Wilson, son of Adam [sic] and Mary A. Sharpe, married Clara Farmer, 20, of Wilson County, son of Cromwill and Mary Jane Farmer.

Clara Sharpe died 20 February 1951 in Gardners township, Wilson County. Per her death certificate, she was born 12 November 1917 to Crummes Farmer and Mary Jane Battle and was married. Mark Sharpe was informant.

  • Martha Mitchell Farmer

Per her death certificate, Martha Mitchel Farmer died 19 October 1964 in Wilson township. She was born 4 July 1881 to Willie Mitchel and Laura Barren and was married to Willie Farmer. She was buried in Pinetops cemetery, Pinetops, North Carolina. [Was her grave later moved?]  Informant was Lloyd Farmer.

  • Kelly Johnson Sr.

On 1 October 1910, Kelly Johnson, 21, married Bloomer Moore, 19, in Edgecombe County.

On 5 June 1917, Kellie Johnson registered for the World War I draft in Gardners township, Wilson County. Per his registration card, he was born 9 March 1888 in Edgecombe County; resided near Fountain [which is in Pitt County]; was a farmer; and supported a wife and five children.

In the 1920 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Kellie Johnson, 32; wife Bloomer, 26; and children Arthur, 10, Elizabeth, 8, L. Rosa, 6, Kellie, 5, Willie, 3, and Bloomer, 2.

In the 1930 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: on Wilson and Tarboro Road, farmer Kelly Johnson, 40; wife Bloomer, 36; Elizabeth, 16, Rosa L., 15, Kelly, 14, Willie, 13, Bloomer, 12, Maggie, 9, Ethlen, 8, Allen, 5, and Martha, 1.

In the 1940 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: farm operator Kelly Johnson, 52; wife Blumer, 48; and children Maggie, 19, Boy, 13, Martha, 10, and William Henry, 9; stepdaughter Mildred, 8; and  granddaughter Alma Jean, 5 months.

Kelly Johnson died 8 April 1963 in Wilson. Per her death certificate, he was born 9 March 1889 to David Johnson and Alice (last name unknown); was retired; was married to Blummer Moore Johnson; and was buried in Northeastern cemetery, Rocky Mount [??].

Allen Sharpe cemetery.

Photographs by Lisa Y. Henderson, July 2017.

The obituary of Mark Benjamin Sharpe.

“Mr. Mark Benjamin Sharpe, 98, of Wilson, N.C. died at Sunrise Assisted Living Center on April 8, 2009 in Charlotte.

“Former N.C. Governor James B. Hunt, Jr. honored Mark, a successful farmer, civil rights activist, and patriarch, with the ‘Order of the Long Leaf Pine,’ the state’s highest civilian award, for his unselfish accomplishments.

“Memorials may be made to the Mark B. Sharpe Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 608, Matthews, N.C., 28105.”

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In the 1920 census of Lower Town Creek township, Edgecombe County: on the public road from Tarboro to Stantonsburg, farm laborer Allen Sharpe, 43; wife Mary A., 38; children Carrie, 17, John, 14, Nettie, 12, Beatrice, 10, Peter, 9, Mark, 8, Bertha, 5, Ethel Branch, 3, and niece Dora, 19,

In the 1930 census of Gardners township, Wilson County: farmer Allen Sharpe, 56; wife Mary A., 47; children Carrie, 25, Nettie, 22, Peter, 19, Mark, 17, Bertha, 15, Blanche, 13,  Senie, 11, and Odell Sharp, 8; plus grandchildren Roosivilt, 7, and Minnie Howard, 4.

In 1940, Mark Benjamen Sharpe registered for the World War II draft in Wilson County. Per his registration card, he resided R.F.D. 1, Macclesfield, Wilson County; was born 26 February 1912 in Wilson; was married to Clara Farmer Sharpe; and worked for U.H. Cozart, Wilson.

On June 25, 1951, Mark Benjamin Sharpe, 38, of Macclesfield, Wilson County, son of Allen and Mary Barron Sharpe, married Mary Fleming, 28, of Elm City. Primitive Baptist elder Luther Hyman performed the ceremony in his home in the presence of Dora Hyman, Doris Lee Hyman and Lester Gray Smith.

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In the late 1940s, Mark Sharpe led a group of African-American parents in Gardners township whose persistent, and creative, demands that Wilson County meet its obligation to educate their children resulted in the building of Speight High School, near the town of Saratoga.  For a full account of their triumphant struggle, see Charles W. McKinney’s Greater Freedom: The Evolution of the Civil Rights Struggle in Wilson, North Carolina.

Obituary printed in www.qcitymetro.com, 20 April 2009.

A systemic coterie of dispensers of the ardent; or, his dive is a tough place.

Another blind tiger makes the news:

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Wilson Daily Times, 12 December 1911.

  • Jim Watson
  • Cyndia Watson
  • Coot Robbins — on 18 March 1912, Coot Robbins, 29, married Hennie Harris, 27, in Wilson.
  • Junius Peacock — in the 1912 Wilson city directory: Peacock Junius cook h[ome] Chestnut
  • Mark Sharpe — likely, in the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Nash Road, tobacco factory laborer Mack Sharpe, 43, wife Katie, 29, and children Harvey, 12, Willard C., 10, Earnest, 8, Samson, 6, Nellie B., 3, and Elexander, 1. In the 1912 Wilson city directory: Savage Mack butler h[ome w Nash ne Lucas av

 

One named Daniel, commonly called Possum.

In the name of God Amen

I Benjamin W. Sharp of the County of Wilson and State of North Carolina being of sound mind and memory do make ordain declare and publish the following to be and to contain my last will and testament in manner and form following, to wit

Item first. I will and desire my Executor hereinafter named to provide for my body a decent burial and to pay all my just debts out of the first monies coming into their hands as a part and parcel of my estate.

Item second I will and desire and devise to my wife Martha that portion of my home tract of land whereon my dwelling now stands and adjoining the lands of Ely Robbins begining on the road below the cribs in front of the store at the barbecue hole then through the field by a walnut tree on an old dunghill a strait line to Redmon Thomas line also one other tract on the north side of the mill swamp also the following slaves to wit and their ishue from the date of this will one named Abram one named Mary one named Daniel commonly called possom one named Judith also three of the choise Horses three cows and calves of her choise and all of the hogs all of my sheep all of the House hold and kitchen furniture of every description all my farming utentials all my riding vehicles one cart and its wheels also fifty barrels of corn and 4000 lbs of foder and ten bushels of peas and 500 lbs of Bacon and all of my poultry fifty lbs of Shugar 25 gallons of Molasses 25 lbs of Coffee and 75 lbs of Picked Cotton to have and to hold during her natural life

Item third my will and desire is that my crop be carred on the present year and at the end of the present year and then to be hired and rented out untill the two years of executorship expires then to be equally divided amongst all of my shildren with the exception of that that is willed to my wife to have and to hold in fee simple except that portion coming to my daughter L[illegible] E. Bridges wife of Franklin Bridges and for that to remain in the hands of my son James B. Sharp as her trustee and for her to have the hire and rent every year during her life and then to be divided amongst her isue or isue of isue

Item the forth my will and desire is that at the death of my wife that the property bequeathed to my wife be equally divided amongst all my children to have and to hold in fee simple except that portion coming to my daughter L[illegible] E. Bridges wife of Franklin Bridges and for that to remain in the hands of my son James B. Sharp and to be done by as the other that has come to her before

Item the fifth my will is that my Executors hereinafter named pay to my son Isaac G. Sharp the sum of forty Dollars out of the money coming in to their hands

Item the sixth I nominate James Barnes (Miller) and my son William H. Sharp Executors to this my last will and testament hereby revoking all other wills and testaments by me heretofore made

In testimony of which I hereunto set my hand and seal this the 28th day of Febuary in the year of our Lord 1860

Signed published and declared to be and to contain the last will and testament of Benjamin W. Sharp in our presence who witness the same at his request the year and day above written   /s/ Benja. W. Sharpe   /s/ Benja’n Bynum, Ely X Robbins

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Contrary to the four people he named in his will, the 1860 slave schedule of Joyners and Gardners township, Wilson County reports that Benjamin Sharpe owned 15 enslaved people, ranging from a 45 year-old woman to a one year-old boy. They were sheltered in just two cabins.

Wilson County marriage records show that Abram Sharpe, son of Church Bynum and Thana Sharp, married Caroline Hines, daughter of Allen Hines and Harriet Hines, on 12 January 1869. In the 1870 census of Joyners township, Wilson County: farm laborer Abram Sharp, 30, wife Caroline, 19, and son John, 9 months. A death certificate shows that widow Caroline Sharp died 1 February 1935, in Pinetops township, Edgecombe County. She had been living on Leggins farm, and her parents were listed as Allen Hines and Caroline Lancaster.

“Possum” may have been the farm laborer Daniel Sharpe, 26, listed in the household of Benjamin Tillery in the 1870 census of Gardners township, Wilson County.

North Carolina Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 [database on-line], ancestry.com