studio photography

Studio shot, no. 197: the Henderson-Taylor family.

This is not, strictly speaking, a studio shot, but it was taken by a studio photographer, Ray J. Dancy. Dancy made a house call to photograph Roderick Taylor Sr., Hattie Henderson, and their children in the front room of the Hendersons’ home at 1109 Queen Street, ca. 1944.

Studio shots, no. 116: Josephus and Minnie Taylor Johnson family.

The unsuccessful legal battle of Josephus Johnson to have his children educated in white Wilson County schools is chronicled here. As noted in earlier posts, despite admitted remote African ancestry and the verdict of the North Carolina Supreme Court, the Johnsons continued to live as white people in their community and beyond.

Here are Minnie Etta Taylor Johnson, Josephus S. Johnson, and their oldest children Carl, Arthur and Fannie.


And three of the Johnsons’ sons as adults:

Screen Shot 2019-08-19 at 8.44.47 PM.png

Carl Johnson (1903-1978).

Screen Shot 2019-08-19 at 8.48.30 PM.png

Luther Johnson (1908-1985).

Screen Shot 2019-08-19 at 8.49.56 PM.png

James Clinton Johnson (1911-1962).

Photos courtesy of users Mary Barber, Joe Whisnant, and welderpbr.

Studio shots, no. 34: W. Thomas Ayers.

Thomas Ayers

William Thomas Ayers (1883-1963), who appears to be seated in Picture-taking Barnes‘ one-armed wicker chair.

In the 1900 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: William Ayers, 45; wife Zilphia, 35; and children William T., 17, Sallie A., 15, Paul E., 13, William J., 11, Henry, 10, Josiah, 8, Rhoda, 7, David J., 5, Viola, 3, and Lilly M., 1.

On 26 September 1918, Thomas Ayers, 34, son of Bill and Zilphia Ayers, married Callie Hood, 25, daughter of Gollett Hood, in Spring Hill township, Wilson County. Witnesses were James H. Barnes, Ivory Atkinson and Harry Barnes, and Missionary Baptist minister R.M.C. Robertson performed the ceremony.

On 12 September 1918, William Thomas Ayers registered for the World War I draft in Wilson County. Per his registration card, he was born 3 February 1883; farmed for G.W. Watson, Lucama; resided at Route 1, Lucama; and his nearest relative was Callie Ayers.

In the 1920 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: on Spring Hill and Black Creek Road, farmer Tom W. Airs, 39; wife Callie, 27; and children James W., 1, and Lillie M., 3 months, plus daughter-in-law Hazel, 19.

In the 1930 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: farmer Tom Ayers, 47; wife Callie, 37; and children James W., 11, Lillie M., 10, Eddie, 8, Harvey, 7, Arthur, 3, Marvis, 2, and Vivian, 1 month.

In the 1940 census of Springhill township, Wilson County: farmer Tom Ayers, 57; wife Callie, 46; and children Eddie, 18, Harvey, 17, Ather, 14, Marvin, 12, and Vivian, 10.

W. Thomas Ayers died 15 September 1963.

Photograph courtesy of user AngelAyers.