Simms

The last will and testament of Clarence McCullers.

In late summer of 1945, lying abed at Duke Hospital, Clarence McCullers grew concerned enough about his prognosis that he wrote out a brief will. With his wife and son both dead, he left all his property to his sisters Bert Atkinson and Lucy Darden and appointed John Mack Barnes his administrator. His witnesses were Rev. W.A. Hilliard and Edwin Dortch Fisher.

c McCullers will

In the 1900 census of Selma township, Wilson County: Jerry McCullers, 50; wife Lucinda, 50; and children Lucy, 24, Ma[illegible], 17, Cha[illegible], 15, Clarence, 15, Laura, 14, and Budina, 7; plus roomers Calvin, 24, and Stanchy Richardson, 22.

On 31 October 1905, Clarence McCullers, 21, son of Jerry McCullers, married Bessie Simms, 19, daughter of Lee and Mary Simms, at the bride’s residence in Wilson. A.M.E. Zion minister N.D. King performed the ceremony in the presence of Mary J. Pender, Rosa Rountree, Boston Griffin and Will Bullock.

On 5 June 1917, Clarence McCullers registered for the World War I draft in Wilson County. Per his registration card, he was born 15 August 1888 in Johnston County, North Carolina; resided at 425 Nash Street; and worked as a butler for D.S. Boykin.

On 30 March 1918, Clarence McCullers, 30, and Rosa Rountree, 28, were married by A.M.E. Zion minister B.P. Coward in the presence of Walter Faulkland and Georgia C. Aiken.

In the 1930 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 1008 Washington Street, Clarence McCullers, 42, hardware store laborer; wife Rosa E., 37, who did washing; and son Willie E., 17.

In the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 1008 Washington Street, Clarence McCullers, 45, born Johnston County, light plant employee; wife Rosa, 43, born Wilson County, a laundress; and roomer Ethel Alexander, 28, born Scotland Neck, North Carolina, a teacher at Darden High.

Rosa E. McCullers died 18 January 1944 at Mercy Hospital. Per her death certificate, she resided at 1008 Washington Street; was 50 years old; was born in Wilson to John Hardy and Lucinda Rountree; and was buried in Rountree cemetery. Clarence McCullers was informant.

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  • W.A. Hilliard — William Alexander Hillard registered for the World War II draft in Wilson. Per his registration card, he was born 14 September 1904 in Greenville, Texas; resided at 119 Pender Street, Wilson; had a permanent address and contact in Kansas City, Missouri; and was an A.M.E. Zion minister.
  • Edwin Dortch Fisher — in the 1940 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Connecticut-born Edwin D. Fisher, 46, was a roomer in the household of Letitia Lovett at 301 Viola Street. His occupation was listed as “World War veteran.” (They wed a year letter. Fisher was the son of Edwin W. Fisher.)

North Carolina Wills and Estates, 1665-1998 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

“Charles, he has shot your daddie.”

State of North Carolina, Wilson County   }

Be it remembered that on this the 16th day of April 1901 I, John K. Ruffin, Coroner of Wilson County, attended by a jury of good and lawful men, viz Larry Bass, A.P. Moore, Green Finch, Sam Breme, L.A. Lamm, Gray White by me summoned for that purpose, according to law, after being by me duly sworn and impaneled at the residence of Joe Flora in the County aforesaid, did hold an inquest over the dead body of Dempsey Pool (Col); and after inquiring into the facts and circumstances of the death of the deceased, from a view of the corpse, and all the testimony to be procured, the Jury find as follow, that is to say, that Dempsey Pool came to his death by a gunshot wound inflicted by Stephen Sims, col: and that in our opinion said would was inflicted in self-defense. And that it is a case of justifiable homicide.  /s/ Larry Bass, A.P. Moore, Green Finch, Gray White, L.A. Lamm, Sam Brame, John K. Ruffin, Coroner of Wilson County

North Carolina, Wilson County  }

The examination of Easter Pool, Gracie Pool, Mrs. E.E. Flora, Mrs. Wethly Flora, E.F. Flora, J.S. Flora, Mary Sims, Jane Sims, Will Artis, J.T. Corbett, taken before the undersigned, Coroner of said county this 16th of April 1901, at the house of J.S. Flora upon the body of Dempsey Pool then and there lying dead to wit: —

E.F. Flora being duly sworn says: —

The fussing commenced about 7 oclock, when Stephen Sims came into the yard and got the wagon, and Easter and Annie Pool, daughters of Dempsey Pool objected. Sims went on with the wagon & got a load of guano from an out house. Coming back to the yard, a boy was driving the wagon & Stephen had his gun on his shoulder. The daughters Easter & Annie went home & come back with their father, mother & brother. These were all at the front gate as the wagon come in. Pool’s crowd has cart-rounds, sticks & a pitchfork, this latter held by Pool’s wife. Sims did not come to the gate, but got over the fence before he got to them & went around the field coming into the yard by a back gate. I told him not to come in the ward with his gun. Pool had come into the yard, following Sims along the fence cursing Sims. When Sims got into the yard, he put his gun to his face & Pool kept advancing I never heard Sims say a word. Pool got about 5 or 6 steps from Sims when Sims shot Pool. Pool ran twenty steps or more after Sims, not saying anything, Sims running from Pool around the house. At the corner of the house Pool fell. Sims went around the house & out the same gate & all of Pool’s crowd were after Sims. Charles, a son of Pool & a grown man, was here shot by Sims. The Pool crowd then struck Sims as he jumped the ditch, and broke the gun. This gun (produced) is a single barrel breech loader. As he went out the gate, Sims daughter, said “Pap, don’t put no more shell in that gun,” but Sims loaded it again. After Sims was knocked down he run down the field & fell over the fence. Charles, who was also shot, was 18 years of age. I did not go out of the house at all. After Dempsey Pool was shot, I saw something in his hand as he ran toward Sims, holding it out straight. Could not tell what it was. Don’t know as to their being on friendly terms. When the shooting was going on in the yard Pool’s children & Sims children were fighting along with the wagon.        E.F. (X) Flora

J.S. Flora being duly sworn says: —

Am a son of preceding witness. Pools girls come here this morning & Sims was hitching up to wagon. I heard them talking & went out there & found them quarreling over the wagon. I told the Pool crowd that they could use my wagon today. One wanted to come back & wanted to hitch up. The other went on & collect her sister who followed. This was about half an hour or more before the shooting, When I started to the field I met Pool, his wife, two girls, the boy, Charles. I said Dempsey, go & hitch up to my wagon & don’t have no fuss with Stephen Sims. He said, “no” & went out to the lot. I understood some of them to say that they were going to have that wagon and some one had to die. The wagon belonged to the place, none having a special right to it. I went on out to the field and heard Dempsey Pool cussing at Steven Sims, calling him to some on if he wanted to fight. I saw Stephen come down the road & get over the fence about 30 yards from the Pool crowd, who were at the gate, saw him when he come in the yard with the gun on his shoulder. In 5 minutes heard the gun fire next thing saw Pool run after Sims; did not know that Pool was hurt. Saw Sims go out same gate he come in & the Pool crowd were after him, about twenty yards behind him. The girls had sticks. Saw Charles Pool & Stephen Sims point weapons with Charles holding out hand as if presenting pistol & saw smoke when he fired. Both shot about the same time, pistol a short time before. Charles then came back to the yard & the women pursued Sims & knocked him down. Sims then run home & the Pool crowd come back in the yard.  /s/ J.S. Flora

Mary Simms being duly sworn says: —

Am daughter of Steffen Simms. Came on from home with wagon to the main house. My brothers, James Billie & Willie with me. I will be 21 in August. James is 17 years old. I opened the gate, was walking I come on in behind the wagon. The Pool crowd, Easter, Annie, and Gracie, Ella & May, met me at the gate. Dempsey Pool was with them but walked out to meet Pap Easter was standing in the road & told James not to run over her. She hit me on the arm with  a plough-bench. I did not hit her. Dempsey went out to the fence & asked Pap why did you strike at my daughter for Pap said I did not strike at her. Pool then called Pap a lie & a s__ of a b___. The fence was then between them, Dempsey followed Pap down the fence, had a pistol & shot at him once before they got to the gate. While Pool was shooting at Pap, the Pool crowd was following after us to fight, but we did not fight. When Pap says don’t come on me Pool kept coming & Pap shot him. When Pap shot, the Pool crowd went near their father & all making toward my father. Pool certainly had pistol & shot at Pa across the fence.

Don’t know where he got it. After the shooting, Pap ran around the house & out same gate & put another shell in his gun, with the Pool crowd following, Charles with pistol. Some of the Pool crowd said shoot him Charlie & Charlie shot & then Pa shot. Charles did not fall but followed Pa a little way & then came back into the yard. The rest of the Pool crowd followed Pa. When I went to get over the fence, Easter Pool hit me. When I saw Pap, he was down then got up & went home one followed us nearly home. There were seven in the Pool crowd.   /s/ Mary Simmes

James Simms being duly sworn says: —

Me & my brother Bill went & caught mules. Pa was in the yard, we come together when we were currying Easter Pool was taking our traces off the wagon. Pa says let them traces alone. He started toward the wagon. Easter then run to another wagon  flat & pulled a round out she thought Pa was after her. He told her to wait until he carried the load of guano to the field & then she could have the wagon. She called him a ___ rascal & said that her father had sent her after the wagon & she was going to have it. We hitched the wagon & went after the guano & then went by home for breakfast. Then I saw Easter her mother & sister father & brother Charles coming up to the house. We did not wait for breakfast but come on Heard Dempsey call my father & curse him & tell him he was going to have wagon or be killed or kill some body. Pa come down with gun & got over the fence before he got to Pool, Pool went up to the yard fence, had pistol in hand & shot one fence at Pa. Pa come in gate & Dempsey kept coming on him & Pa shot Dempsey & then run around house & back out of same gate.

Charles was on edge first & had pistol, all the Pools were behind Pa & some one of them told Charles to shoot & he shot & then Pa shot. Then Charles walked on a little way, then turned back & come into yard.

Aunt Grace, Easter & Annie followed Pa to the road & struck him as he went over the fence. Aunt Grace had pitchfork. The other girls had sticks. One little girl, Mary, followed us nearly home, other behind.   James (X) Simms

Grace Pool being duly sworn says: —

I am wife of Dempsey Pool. I came in the yard this morning & I went to the kitchen & asked why they allowed so much fussing here, & asked Mr. Flora whose wagon it was. Mr. Flora did not seem to talk much said Dempsey could have his wagon about this time Dempsey come in & said carry team back & [illegible] going to do nothing. I says “yes lets put up fence.” He says “no, Steve Sims wants to fight let him come on out in the road.” He hollowed to Steve who was at home to come on & he would fight. This was after Steve had carried wagon after guano. About this time the wagon come in, we all met, Steve’s crowd & my crowd met in the yard. Steve got over field fence & Dempsey stayed in yard, Steven coming around fence & into gate & Dempsey following him. Dempsey was going toward Steven, & Steven was stepping back & said Don’t come here. Dempsey kept on & Steve shot him. Steve then went on around house & Dempsey following until he fell. Steven went out same gate & all of us after him. Charles was back of us. I says “Charles, he has shot your daddie.” Charles then went for Steve & Steve shot him. Charles had no pistol and was half turned when Steve shot him. If Charles had a pistol I don’t know it. Dempsey did not have a pistol at home of abroad & did not have a pistol when he was shot.     Grace (X) Pool

Will Artis being duly sworn says: —

Don’t know anything about the fight. Took Charles Pool home. Heard him say that after Stefen Sims shot his father that he, Charles Pool, shot at Steffen.    Will (X) Artis

J.T. Corbett being duly sworn says: —

Know nothing of fight. Saw Charles Pool since fight. I was sent down to get his pistol & he said he did not know where it was unless his mother had it. He did not tell me he used it, but said his crowd had one.    /s/ J.T. Corbett

Easter Pool being duly sworn says: —

Am daughter of Dempsey Pool. Pa sent me & Annie to catch mules to haul rails to swamp. Stephen was up here.  About 5,30 oclock. When I went to take off traces Steve says “don’t do that I am going to use wagon. I said “we want to use wagon.” He says “you are not going to use it. He was coming toward me with lines in his hand. He struck at me with lines & I jumped back. I got me a wagon round & Annie says lets go home we went home & told Pa. Annie told him that Steven had struck at me. Pa told me to come back & “let Steve whip me. Then all of us, mother, sister & brother, came up to the house. Charlie went & caught mule Ma asked Mr Flora what was matter. He said he did not know, then Pa came in the gate & Mr Flora met him & told him to take his wagon. Pa refused to take Mr Floras wagon. He went down to front gate & called me & told me to go & have Steve arrested. I said that [illegible] suit was no use, to get & get wagon & go to field. Pa then got on fence & called Steve & said “You have been messing with my children all the year, now come on to whip them.” Steve took his gun & come on up here. When he got to corner of fence got over on field side & Pa come on up to back gate in yard & met at back gate. Pa was going toward Steve & Steve said “don’t come on me.” Steve then pointed his gun at Pa & Pa said “Don’t shoot here” I then heard the gun fire. Next thing I saw was Steve running around house & then followed fight in field. I have never seen Pa with a pistol.   Easter (X) Pool

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On 24 December 1874, Dempsey Pool, 23, married Grace Bynum, 23, in Edgecombe County.

In the 1900 census of Wilson Town, Wilson County: farmer Dempsey Pool, 50; wife Gracey, 45; and children Easter, 22, Elizabeth, 20, Dempsey Jr., 18, Charlie, 17, Annie, 14, Ella, 13, Mary, 11, Alice, 9, Haley, 8, Minnie, 5, and Richard, 2.

In the 1900 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: farmer Stephen Simms, 46; wife Zanie, 40; and children Mary, 19, Lizzie, 16, James, 14, Billie, 12, Willie, 9, and Rommie, 6.

Coroner’s Records, Miscellaneous Records, Wilson County Records, North Carolina State Archives.

Real estate transfers.

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Wilson Daily Times, 10 October 1911.

  • Abram B. Simms — in the 1900 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Abram Simms, 32, bricklayer, wife Mollie, 25, and children Annie, 7, and William, 4. On 31 December 1902, Abram B. Simms, 39, married Sue Wilkins, 37, in Wilson at Sue Wilkins’. Missionary Baptist minister W.M. Baker performed the ceremony.
  • Gilbert Stallings — in the 1908 Wilson city directory, Gilbert Stallings is listed as a farmer residing at 153 Suggs Street. In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: farmer Gilbert Stallings, 56, wife Annie, 50, and children Gilbert G., 19, Leonard, 16, and Georgia, 7. Gilbert Stallings died 13 August 1918 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 8 February 1854 in Franklin County to John Stallings and Hannah Ufferman; was married; and was a farmer. G.W. Stallings was informant.
  • S.H. Vick — Samuel H. Vick.
  • Nazareth Pierce — in the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: at 445 Goldsboro Street, Nazareth A. Pierce, 35, laborer, wife Ella, 34, laundress, and children Eugene, 9, Almada, 7, Leroy, 4, and Louis, 2. Nazareth Pierce died 16 February 1941 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born about 1877 in Franklin County, North Carolina, to Adam W. Pierce; lived at 415 East Green Street; was married to Ada A. Pierce; and worked as an insurance agent. He was buried in Rountree cemetery. Joseph L. Pierce was informant. An index of Social Security death claims lists his full name as Nazareth Andrew Pierce and his birth date as 15 June 1876.

You is a S of B; or, He asked for his hat.

State of North Carolina, Wilson County   }

Be it remembered, that on this the 8 day of May 1904, I Dr E.T. Dickinson Coroner of the County of Wilson attended by a Jury of six good and lawful men viz Geo Amerson L.E. Moore J.S. Walston W.E. Millinder P.P. Williams & J.D. Barnes, by me summoned for that purpose according to law, after being duly sworn and impaneled by me at W.W. Graves place in Wilson County did hold an inquest over the dead body of Fate Thomas and after examination into the facts and circumstances of the death of the deceased from the view of the corpse and all the testimony to be procured the said jury finds the following that is to say,

That Fate Thomas came to his death from a blow delivered with an ax in the hands of Bud or Jim Simms and that Bill Simms to be held as accessory to the crime.   J.D. Barnes, J.S. (X) Walston, Geo. (X) Amerson, P.P. (X) Williams, L.E. Moore, W.E. Millinder

Inquest had, and signed and sealed in the presents of E.T. Dickinson, Acting Coroner of Wilson Co.

John Barnes being duly sworn says:

Bud Simms brought Geo Farmer out of the house and Fate Thomas got mad and cussed Bud Simms and Bill cussed Fate and Fate told Bill not to cuss him any moore and Bill cussed Fate again and then Fate hit Bill and Bud Simms hit Fate with something don’t know what it was but think it was a stick and when Bud hit Fate he knocked him down. I think he lived about ½ hours he asked for his hat.  John (X) Barnes

George Farmer being duly sworn says:

I don’t know what it was first started about I heard Bill Simms call Fate Thomas a S of B and Fate said not call me another S of B and Bill said you is a S of B and then Fate hit him with his fist and then there was a general fight and Bud Simms walked up and hit Fate with some thing don’t know where it was an ax or stick but the lick knocked him down.  Geo. (X) Farmer

Dave Ruffin being duly sworn says

All I know about it I heard Fate tell Bill Simms not to call him a nother S of B and Bill said you are a S of B and Fate hit Bill Simms with his fist and then there was a general fight and Bud Simms steps up and hit Fate Thomas with the ax twice I think he hit him the first time in the shoulder and the last time on the back of the head.  Dave (X) Ruffin

Tom Farmer being duly sworn says:

Heard Bill Simms call Fate Thomas a S of B and Fate told him not to call him a S of B any moore and he called him one again and they went to fighting then Bud Simms came up and struck Fate Thomas twice with the ax and the second lick he knocked him down. The last lick he hit him on the head. Don’t know where he hit him first but think it was on his sholder.  Tom (X) Farmer

——

I cannot positively identify Jim “Bud” Simms, Bill Simms, John Barnes, George Farmer, Dave Ruffin or Tom Farmer.

Coroner’s Records, Miscellaneous Records, Wilson County Records, North Carolina State Archives.

Establishing a graded school.

From “The Graded School Bill: An Act to Establish a Graded School in Wilson township, Wilson County,” as published in the Wilson Advance. The North Carolina legislature ratified the bill on 27 February 1883.

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Wilson Advance, 23 March 1883.

  • E.C. Simms. Edward Cicero Simms was a teacher. In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: school teacher Edward C. Simms, 23, wife Nicy, 26, and son Edward, 7 months. By 1891, the Simms family had moved to Norfolk, Virginia, where Edward is listed in the city directory. By 1897, Edward was an ordained A.M.E. Zion minister, as shown in this 9 May 1897 edition of the Norfolk Virginian:

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  • G.A. Farmer. Probably, Gray Farmer, a carpenter and constable.
  • Peter Rountree was a shoemaker.
  • Charles Battle was a blacksmith.
  • Jerry Washington. Jeremiah Washington was a blacksmith. His daughter Annie Maria married Samuel H. Vick.
  • C.M. Jones
  • Daniel Vick, carpenter, farmer and politician, was the father of Samuel H. Vick.
  • Samuel Williams was a baker, then grocer. In the 1870 census of Wilson, Wilson County: baker Samuel Williams, 30, with carpenter Daniel Vick, 25, wife Fanny, 24, and children Samuel, 8, Earnest, 3, Netta M., 5, and Violet Drake, 52. On 24 September 1870, Samuel Williams, parents unknown, married Ann Scarbro, daughter of Jack and Zaly Adams, in Wilson. In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: Samuel Williams, 38, wife Ann, 47, and daughter Anna, 9. In the 1900 census, grocer Samuel Williams, 58, with lodgers William Jackson, 36, and William Allen, 25, both tobacco graders.
  • C.H. Darden. Charles H. Darden was a blacksmith and, later, undertaker. In 1938, Wilson’s high school for African-American children would be named for Darden.

Simms family portrait.

john-leslie-simms

Gertrude Simms Hoskins (1904-1988), Hannah Malinda Smith Simms (1876-1961), John Leslie Simms Jr. (1910-1982), Marcellus Simms (1900-1946), Jeanette Simms Bonner (1907-1999), John Leslie Simms (1867-1942), Rosetta Simms Campbell (1909-2001), Ashley Augustus Simms (1898-1977), Benjamin Frank Simms (1903-1980), circa 1910. 

——

In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Caroline Simms, 38, and children Harriet, 14, and John, 4.

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Caroline Smith Simms (1832-1928).

On 25 January 1872, Warren Simms, son of Jack Anderson and Rebecca Simms, married Caroline Smith, daughter of Morton Smith and Charlotte Smith, at the Wilson County courthouse. [Note: Not uncommonly, Caroline used both Simms and Smith as maiden names. Her brother, Simon Simms, married Emeline Brooks on 16 January 1869 in Wilson County. His license lists his parents as Martin Simms and Charlotte Simms.]

In the 1880 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Warren Simms, 25, wife Caroline, 47, step-daughter Harriet, 20, step-son John, 12, and children Zanah Ann, 9, and Lucy, 1, plus [Caroline’s] grandsons Ellis, 4, and Amanuel, 2.

On 7 February 1894, John L. Smith [alias Simms] married Lyndy Smith in Wayne County.

In the 1900 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer John Simms, 33, wife Malinda, 23, and son Ashley, 1.

In the 1910 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farmer John Simms, 43, wife Melinda, 37, and children Ashley, 10, Marcellus, 8, Frank, 7, Gertrude, 6, Jennette, 4, and Rosettie, 1.

On 4 December 1928, Carolina Simms died in Pine Level township, Johnston County. Her death certificate reports that she was born in 1822 to unknown parents in Johnston County.

In the 1930 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: John Simms, 63, wife Milindy, 54, and children Jenette, 23, Rosetta, 20, Johnnie, 18, Paul, 16, Julia, 13, and Mary, 12.

In the 1940 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: John Simms, 78, wife Melanie, 65, and children and grandchildren John Simms, 29, Paul Simms, 26, Mary L. Simms, 21, Cleo Bonner, 8, and Jesse, 6, Willie, 5, and Else Simms, 5.

John Simms died 15 December 1942 in Wilson township, Wilson County. His death certificate indicates that he was born 9 October 1867 in Wilson County to Curtis Simms and Caroline (last name unknown), that he was married to Malinda Simms; and that he was buried in Rountree cemetery near Wilson. Marcellus Simms was the informant.

Hannah Malinda Simms died 28 March 1961 in Wilson, North Carolina. Her death certificate indicates that she was born 15 August 1880 in Wayne County to Minerva Smith and an unknown father. She was buried in Rest Haven cemetery. Jeanette Bonner was informant.

Photos courtesy of Ancestry.com member brianandrewbonner.

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

Death certificates of Wilson County natives who died in Indiana.

  • Jack Sims

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In the 1880 census of Stantonsburg, Wilson County: Isaac Simms, 32, wife Elvy, 33, and children Lucy, 12, Lilly, 10, Jack, 6, Isaac, 5, and unnamed 10 day-old twins, a boy and a girl.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born Jack Sims, 69, was a lodger in a household on 17th Street.

  • Ella Farmer Suggs

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In the 1940 census of Terre Haute, Vigo County, Indiana: hotel night porter Adock Thompson, 68, wife Hattie, 55, and widowed sister-in-law Ella Suggs, 68. Ella indicated that she had been living in Indianapolis in 1935.

  • Joseph Levi Sutton

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In the 1910 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Wiggins Street, Joseph Sutton, 31, wife Maryliza, 30, and children Lula M., 9, Collie L., 6, Amanda, 4, and Bessie E., 1.

In the 1920 census of Taylors township, Wilson County: on Finch Mill Road, Joseph B. Sutton, 40, wife Malissa, 40, and children Lula May, 19, Carrol Lee, 16, Senoa, 13, Bessie, 11, Rosa Belle, 9, Beatrice, 7, James W., 5, Frederick C., 2, and Levi J., 10 months.

In the 1930 census of Pottstown, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania: at 329 Front Street, Joseph B. Sutton, 50, wife Malissa G., 53, and children Beatrice, 17, James W., 15, Frederick, 13, Joseph L., 11, Bruce, 9, Beulah, 9, and Mable E., 7.

On 22 May 1940, in Emporia, Greensville County, Virginia, Joseph L. Sutton, 21, of Petersburg, Virginia, married Josie Mae Kenney, 18, of Wilson, North Carolina. Joseph, son of Joseph B. Sutton and Melissa G. Thaggard, reported that he was born in Sussex County, Virginia. Josie, daughter of Frank Kenney and Ida Barnes, reported that she was born in Baltimore, Maryland.

On 16 October 1940, Joseph Levi Sutton registered for the World War II draft. His registration card notes that he was born 19 May 1919 in Wilson County, that he resided at 534 East Nash Street in Wilson, that he worked for Southern Tobacco Company, and that his nearest relative was Malissie Gray Sutton of 716 East Green Street.

Malissie Gray Sutton died 17 May 1964 at her daughter’s home at 1200 Carolina Street in Wilson. Her death certificate states that she was born 15 May 1880 in Cumberland County to Andrew Thaggard and Annie Edwards. Informant was Lula Hayes of 1200 Carolina.

  • Eliza Patterson Venable

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In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 27 West 10th Street, widow Eliza Venable, 53, laundress, and daughter Fannie Patterson, 30, domestic.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 913 Camp Street, Edward Thompkins, 47, wife Fannie, 36, daughter Elizabeth, 4, and widowed mother-in-law Eliza Venable, 63.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2846 Shriver Street, Edward Tompkins, 56, wife Fannie, 44, daughter Elizabeth, 15, and mother-in-law Eliza Venable, 73. Edward worked as a stock clerk in an electric shop and Fannie as a church secretary.

  • Eleanor Bynum Whitlock

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  • Eugene Williams

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In 1942, Eugene Williams of 918 Fayette Street, Indianapolis, Indiana, registered for the World War II draft. His draft card reports that he was born 9 May 1878 in Wilson County, North Carolina, that his contact was Jannie Williams, and that he worked for Heteren & Burner & Co.

  • John A. Woodard

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In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1146 West 26th Street, North Carolina-born laborer John Woodard, 46, and Ohio-born wife Belle, 44.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1146 West 27th Street, owned and valued at $2500, John Woodard, 56,  wife Belle, 54, and son Frederick, 7. John worked as a janitor in a business building.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 104 Geisendorf Street, laborer John Woodard, 66, and wife Belle, 65.

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

Death certificates of Wilson County natives who died in Indiana.

  • Caroline Shirley Simms

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Caroline Simms died 30 July 1922 in Indianapolis. Her death certificate reports that she was born September 1850 in Wilson, North Carolina, to Robert Shirley and Caroline Barnes.

Jefrey Simms, son of Willis Hagans and Dicey Simms, married Carolin Barnes, daughter of Robert Dupree and Meneney Dupree, on 19 April 1869 in Wilson County. In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Jeffrey Simms, 24, wife Caroline, 21, and an unnamed one month-old daughter.

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born laborer Jeff Sims, 35, wife Carline, 25, and daughters Martha, 10, Maliza, 6, Lillie, 3, and Laura, 1.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Center township, Marion County, Indiana: at 746 Walnut, North Carolina-born widow Caroline Simms, 47, a washerwoman, with daughters Mary, 27, Laura, 21, and Bessie, 17. Mary was a divorced washerwoman. Laura was a servant, and Bessie, the only child born in Indiana, was a student.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2323 North Rural Street, Virginia-born Robert Evans, 43, hotel porter, Indiana-born wife Elizabeth, 33, public school teacher, and North Carolina-born mother Caroline Sims, 63. (All described as white.)

The death certificates of her daughters Mary Simms Berry and Laura Simms Clemmons are here.

  • Stella Tomlinson Maxwell

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Stella Maxwell died 17 October 2000 aged 100. Her death certificate reports that she was born in Wilson County, North Carolina, on 24 April 1900 to Ernest Thomlingson and Nancy Newsom.

  • Lewis Henry Deans Sr.

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Lewis H. Deans died 25 January 2004 in Indianapolis. His death certificate reports that he was born 11 October 1913 in Elm City, North Carolina, to Joshua Deans and Julia Arrington.

In the 1920 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: Josuah Deams, 62; wife Julia, 39; and children Glendora, 19, Minnie, 14, Daisy, 13, James, 11, Ernest, 9, Allen 8, Louis, 6, Armon and Norman, 4, John, 2, and Mary and Martha, 8 months.

In the 1930 census of Toisnot township, Wilson County: on the By Road, Josh Deans, 71; wife Julia, 50; and children James, 21, Louis, 16, Orman and Norman, 15, John, 13, and Mary and Martha M., 10, Josh A., 9, and Julia, 7.

Lewis left Wilson County in the 1930s. In 1938, he married Gilberdia T. Lathery in Macomb County, Michigan, north of Detroit. Their marriage license listed his residence as Washington, D.C., and occupation as porter.

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  • Lilly Evora Simms Harris

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Lilly Harris died 8 February 1911 in Warren, Marion County, Indiana. Her death certificate reported that she was born in Wilson, North Carolina, on 26 January 1875 to Jeff Simms and Caroline Shirley. [See above.]

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born laborer Jeff Sims, 35, wife Carline, 25, and daughters Martha, 10, Maliza, 6, Lillie, 3, and Laura, 1.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1818 Rural, day laborer Robert Harris, 24, and wife Lillie, 23.

  • Louisa Artis Hester

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Louisa Hester died 10 June 1921 in Indianapolis. Her death certificate states that she was born 27 December 1923 in Wilson, North Carolina, to Lewis Artis and Louisa Artis.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1021 South West Street, day laborer William Hester, 55, wife Louisa, 53, Indiana-born daughter Clarissa McGown, 23, son-in-law Nathen, 25, a railroad porter, grandson Harreld, 5, and granddaughter Babe, 2 months.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: train cook Ned McGowan, 36, wife Clara, 36, and children Harold, 15, and Abbie, 10, plus William Hester, 58, and wife Louisa Hester, 62.

  • Henry Joyner

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Henry Joyner died 11 February 1940 in Indianapolis, Indiana. His death certificate reports that he was born 15 October 1861 in Wilson, North Carolina to unknown parents.

On 24 January 1882, Henry Joyner, 24, married Annie Knight, 26, in Wilson County.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1117 North Tremont Street, Henry Joyner, 49, wife Anna, 35, and children Edwin, 13, Stella, 11, Laura, 9, George, 7, Thomas, 4, and Cora, 2.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1117 North Tremont Street, Henry Joyner, 55, wife Annie, 44, and children Edwin, 23, Laura, 19, George, 16, Thomas, 14, Cora, 11, Cecil, 9, and Henry, 7. Edwin was born in North Carolina; the other children in Indiana.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1117 North Tremont Street, Henry Joyner, 60, wife Anna, 5o, and children Laura, 28, George, 26, and Thomas, 24.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2858 Highland Place, Henry Joyner, 73, wife Annie C., 65, son George E., 36, grandsons Harry Booker, 10, and Chas. R. Joyner, 7.

  • John D. Kersey

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John D. Kersey died 24 June 1901. His death certificate reported that he was 13 years old and born in Wilson, North Carolina, to Walter D. Kersey and Anis Williams.

  • Walter D. Kersey

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Walter D. Kersey died 30 March 1915 in Indianapolis’ City Hospital. His death certificate reports that he was born 28 May 1862 in North Carolina to John Kersey and Julia Richardson.

In the 1870 census of Wilson, Wilson County: blacksmith John Kirsey, 45, wife Julia, 42, and children Louisa 19, Idella, 16, John, 13, Walter, 10, and Robt., 9.

In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: blacksmith John Kersey, 61; wife Julia, 53; and son Walter, 21; plus boarder William Joyner, who worked in the blacksmith shop.

In the 1910 census of Center township, Marion County, Indiana: widower Walter Kersey, 40, a blacksmith, was a boarder in a household at 914 Weikel Street.

  • Sidney Lucas 

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  • Martha Ann Simms Ratcliffe

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Martha Ann Ratcliffe died 12 February 1961 at her home at 711 Dorman Street, Indianapolis. Her death certificate reports that she was born 8 May 1871 in Wilson, North Carolina, to Jeff Sims and Caroline Shirley. (See Caroline Simms above.)

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born laborer Jeff Sims, 35, wife Carline, 25, and daughters Martha, 10, Maliza, 6, Lillie, 3, and Laura, 1.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: day laborer Xanophene Sims [sic], 35, wife Martha, 29, and children Roy, 4, Wallie, 3, and Ruth, 5.

Martha and Xenophon Ratcliffe lost a son, Wayne, on the same day he was born, 19 June 1908. In 1916, another tragedy struck Martha Simms Ratcliff’s family:

ratcliffe-5-2-1916

Indianapolis News, 2 May 1916.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: Kentucky-born Xenophon Ratcliff, 63, a school board janitor; wife Martha, 55, a cook; Walter, 22, meat presser in a packing house; Ruth, 21, , Carrie, 20, Elizabeth, 18, Jeff S., 15, Martha, 13, and nephew Walter Ratcliff.

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

Death certificates of Wilson County natives who died in Indiana.

  • Delphia Simpson Blackwell

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Delpha Blackwell died 2 April 1902 in Indianapolis of apoplexy. Her death certificate states that she was born in North Carolina to Silias Laster and Orpie Laster.

In the 1860 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Silas Lassiter, 38; wife Orpie,34; and children Sallie, 12, Mary, 11, James, 9, John, 7, Elizabeth, 5, Penina, 4, Hardy, 3, Silas, 1, and George, 3 months, and Delpha Simpson, 14.

On 7 December 1866, Mathew Lassiter married Delpha Simpson in Wilson County. [Mathew was Delpha’s uncle by marriage, brother of her step-father Silas Lassiter.]

In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Mathew Lassiter, 47; wife Delphy, 24; and children Harriet, 3, unnamed, 1 month, and Thomas Lassiter, 2.

In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Nathan Blackwell, 40; his wife Mary Blackwell, 55; 36 year-old servant Delpha Lassiter; Harriet Lassiter, 14, and Nathan Lassiter, 4; Charlotte Baker, 70; and Edwin Blackwell, 17.

Nathan Blackwell and Delphia Lassiter married 30 January 1890 in Wilson County. In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: 59 year-old day laborer Nathan Blackwell; wife Delpha, 53; daughter-in-law [stepdaughter?] Harriet, 33; and Harriet’s children James, 16, Jonas, 13, Martha, 11, and Peter, 10.

  • Nathan Blackwell

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In 1860, Nathan E. Blackwell, 20, is listed as a wagoner living in the household of white farmer Robinson Baker in Old Fields township, Wilson County.

In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: 31 year-old farm laborer Nathan Blackwell, 42 year-old Mary Blackwell, and 6 year-old Edwin Blackwell.

In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Nathan Blackwell, 40; his wife Mary Blackwell, 55; 36 year-old servant Delpha Lassiter; Harriet Lassiter, 14, and Nathan Lassiter, 4; Charlotte Baker, 70; and Edwin Blackwell, 17.

Nathan Blackwell and Delphia Lassiter married 30 January 1890 in Wilson County. In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: 59 year-old day laborer Nathan Blackwell; wife Delpha, 53; daughter-in-law [stepdaughter?] Harriet, 33; and Harriet’s children James, 16, Jonas, 13, Martha, 11, and Peter, 10.

  • Jonas Blackwell

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Jonah Blackwell died 22 December 1916 in Indianapolis after being struck in the head with a stove poker. Nathan Blackwell (below) was informant.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: 59 year-old day laborer Nathan Blackwell; wife Delpha, 53; daughter-in-law [stepdaughter?] Harriet, 33; and Harriet’s children James, 16, Jonas, 13, Martha, 11, and Peter, 10.

On 26 August 1910, Jonah Blackwell, 23, of Wilson, North Carolina, and son of Nathan Blackwell and Harriet Black, married Clara Martin in Indianapolis.

  • Nathan Blackwell

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Nathan Blackwell died in Indianapolis on 20 January 1946. His death certificate reports that he was born in Wilson County to unknown parents.

In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Nathan Blackwell, 40; his wife Mary Blackwell, 55; 36 year-old servant Delpha Lassiter; Harriet Lassiter, 14, and Nathan Lassiter, 4; Charlotte Baker, 70; and Edwin Blackwell, 17.

On 17 October 1894, Nathan Blackwell, 26, married Bertha Paton in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: factory laborer Nathan Blackwell, 35, Tennessee-born wife Bertha Bell, 35, and daughter A.J., 3, plus a boarder.

On 28 November 1916, Nathan Blackwell, son of Nathaniel Blackwell and Delphia Laster, married Lulu Winkfield in Indianapolis.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: at 2345 Baltimore Street, railroad boilermaker Nathan Blackwell, 45, Tennessee-born wife Lola, 37, and daughter Jane A., 13.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: at 2345 Baltimore Street, railroad laborer Nathan Blackwell, 57, wife Lola, 42, and daughter Jane Young, 23.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana: at 2345 Baltimore Street, steam railroad laborer Nathan Blackwell, 76, wife Lulu, 67, and nephew Pete Demunery, 48.

  • Nancy Newsome Baker

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Nancy Baker died 28 December 1952 in Indianapolis. Her death certificate reports that she was born in Wilson County, North Carolina, on 18 August 1880 to Tonie Newson and an unknown mother.

In the 1880 census of Cross Roads township, Wilson County: Toney Newsome, 61, wife Jane, 41, and children Benjamin, 20, Mary, 13, Gastin, 11, and Nancy, 8.

On 18 November 1889, Benjamin Baker, 20, son of Ephriam and Margarett Baker, of Cross Roads, married Nancy Newsome, 18, daughter of Tony and Jane Newsome, in Cross Roads township.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: widow Nancy Baker, 70, was a boarder in the household of Harvey Coleman at 1058 Traub Avenue.

  • Mary Simms Berry

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Mary Berry died in Indianapolis on 30 November 1958. Her death certificate reports that she was born 23 January 1874 in Wilson, North Carolina, to Jeff Simms and Carolyn Shirley.

Jefrey Simms, son of Willis Hagans and Dicey Simms, married Carolin Barnes, daughter of Robert Dupree and Meneney Dupree, on 19 April 1869 in Wilson County. In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Jeffrey Simms, 24, wife Caroline, 21, and an unnamed one month-old daughter.

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born laborer Jeff Sims, 35, wife Carline, 25, and daughters Martha, 10, Maliza, 6, Lillie, 3, and Laura, 1.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Center township, Marion County, Indiana: at 746 Walnut, North Carolina-born widow Caroline Simms, 47, a washerwoman, with daughters Mary, 27, Laura, 21, and Bessie, 17. Mary was a divorced washerwoman. Laura was a servant, and Bessie, the only child born in Indiana, was a student.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1316 Columbia, Kentucky-born Lee H. Clemmons, 29, wife Laura, 29, widowed sister-in-law Mary Berry, 32, and a lodger. Lee was a saloon bartender and Mary worked as a housemaid.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born Mary E. Berry, 44, divorced, lived alone in a rented home and worked as a cook for a private family.

  • Laura Simms Clemmons

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Jefrey Simms, son of Willis Hagans and Dicey Simms, married Carolin Barnes, daughter of Robert Dupree and Meneney Dupree, on 19 April 1869 in Wilson County. In the 1870 census of Stantonsburg township, Wilson County: Jeffrey Simms, 24, wife Caroline, 21, and an unnamed one month-old daughter.

In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: North Carolina-born laborer Jeff Sims, 35, wife Carline, 25, and daughters Martha, 10, Maliza, 6, Lillie, 3, and Laura, 1.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Center township, Marion County, Indiana: at 746 Walnut, North Carolina-born widow Caroline Simms, 47, a washerwoman, with daughters Mary, 27, Laura, 21, and Bessie, 17. Mary was a divorced washerwoman. Laura was a servant, and Bessie, the only child born in Indiana, was a student.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1316 Columbia, Kentucky-born Lee H. Clemmons, 29, wife Laura, 29, widowed sister-in-law Mary Berry, 32, and a lodger. Lee was a saloon bartender and Mary worked as a housemaid.

  • Floyd Woodard

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Floyd Woodard died in Indianapolis on 26 April 1995. His death certificate reports that he was born in Wilson, North Carolina, on 1 May 1904 to Fred and Mary Ann Sauls Woodard and was buried there in Rest Haven cemetery. Floyd did not migrate to Indiana until well into adulthood; he registered in Wilson for the World War II draft.

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  • Wiley C. Bunn

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Wiley C. Bunn died in Indianapolis at his home at 2044 Ralston on 4 December 1941. His death certificate reports that he was born on 8 July 1873 in Wilson to Charlie Bunn and worked as a city street sweeper.

On 28 October 1899, Wiley Bunn, 27, of North Carolina, son of Charles Bunn, married Mattie Anderson in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1900 census of Warren, Marion County, Indiana: Wiley Bunn, 26, and wife Mattie, 27, who had been born in Utah to North Carolina-born parents. Wiley worked as a street car laborer.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: on 5715 Bona Avenue, street laborer Wilie Bunn, 36, Virginia-born wife Mattie H., 38, a laundress, and father Chas. Bunn, 73.

Wiley C. Bunn married Julia A. Mitchell in Marion County, Indiana, on 5 September 1915.

On 12 September 1918, Wiley C. Bunn, 45, of 1803 Alvord Street in Indianapolis registered for the World War I draft. He listed his occupation as railroader for Mead Construction Company and Julia Bunn as his nearest relative. He was described as medium height and build with brown eyes and black hair.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2044 Ralston Avenue, owned and valued at $2000, Wiley Bunn, 55, a city laborer, and Kentucky-born wife Julia, 44.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2044 Ralston Avenue, owned and valued at $800, Wiley Bunn, 66, a street cleaner, wife Julia, 63, and daughter Mary C. Donawy, 9.

  • Jason Cornelius Farmer

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In the 1880 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: Warren Farmer, 37, wife Nancy, 24, and children Ella, 13, Rosann, 11, Harriett, 10, Julia, 9, Abel, 5, and Jason, 1, all born in North Carolina.

On 23 February 1897, Jason Farmer, 28, married Hannah Aretts in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 37, wife Hannah, 46, and stepdaughters Maggie, 25, Ardena, 14, and Pennie Artis, 12.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, foundry worker Jason C. Farmer, 46, wife Hannah, 56, and stepdaughter Penetta Artis, 22, a hairdresser, all born in North Carolina.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, automobile shop laborer J.C. Farmer, 55, wife Hannah, 60, son-in-law Osborne Ballenger, 26, and daughter Pettie, 32.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2329 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 60, and wife Hannah, 75.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, widower J.C. Farmer, 62, working as a retail grocery truck driver.

  • Hannah Ellis Artis Farmer

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Hannah Farmer died 6 April 1935 in Indianapolis. Her death certificate reports that she was born 12 April 1852 in North Carolina to Jack and Margaret Ellis.

In the 1870 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: Jackson Ellis, 45, wife Margaret, 36, children Hannah, 17, and Hewel, 11, and Hannah Ellis Sr., 90, plus Lucy, 2, and Mary Simms, 1.

On 29 February 1872, John Artist, son of Arch and Rose Artist, married Hannah Ellis, daughter of Jack and Margaret Ellis at H. Dew’s.

In the 1880 census of Saratoga township, Wilson County: John Artice, 40, wife Hannah, 23, and daughters Mary L., 10, Margaret, 8, and Susan, 1 month.

On 23 February 1897, Jason Farmer, 28, married Hannah Aretts [Artis] in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 37, wife Hannah, 46, and stepdaughters Maggie, 25, Ardena, 14, and Pennie Artis, 12.

In the 1910 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, foundry worker Jason C. Farmer, 46, wife Hannah, 56, and stepdaughter Penetta Artis, 22, a hairdresser, all born in North Carolina.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2325 Oxford, automobile shop laborer J.C. Farmer, 55, wife Hannah, 60, son-in-law Osborne Ballenger, 26, and daughter Pettie, 32.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2329 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 60, and wife Hannah, 75.

  • Ardena Artis Hamm

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In the 1900 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2313 Oxford, Jason C. Farmer, 37, wife Hannah, 46, and stepdaughters Maggie, 25, Ardena, 14, and Pennie Artis, 12.

On 20 July 1912, Ardena Artis, 26, daughter of John Artis and Hannah Farmer, married John H. Hamm, son of Ben Hamm and Mary Jones, in Marion County, Indiana.

In the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 2020 Alvord, John Ham, 34, and wife Ardena, 35.

In the 1930 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: at 1038 Roache, gas plant janitor John H. Hamm, 40, and wife Ardena, 41.

In the 1940 census of Indianapolis, Indiana: Ardena Hamm, 52, servant, in the household of Margaret Aufderheide.

Indiana Death Certificates, 1899-2011 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.