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Saturday, September 27, 2014


Each Tuesday night beginning on September 23, 2014, PBS will air the series, “Finding Your Roots” hosted by Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr.  This documentary traces entertainers from “all walks of life.” The first episode highlighted three entertainers researching their fathers:

Courtney B. Vance
Gloria Ruben
Stephen King

No, this is not the celebrity version of one of Maury Povich's shows titled "Who's My Daddy" or "Help Me Find My Daddy". Instead, this episode show how these 3 celebrities are just like your everyday person who is researching their family tree, their paternal family tree. For instance, Courtney B. Vance’s father was adopted after Courtney’s 17 year old grandmother gave him up. While Gloria Ruben’s father died when she was young and Stephen King’s father deserted his family when Stephen was very young. In fact, Stephen had never seen a picture of his father until Dr. Gates found a copy; Stephen and his father could had been twins.  Through my research, I have met a lot of “DNA” cousins who are looking for their biological family and some cousins are simply looking for their fathers. 

In Gloria’s segment, we learn that when she was born her father was 73 years old. That was shocker for me!  But my mom reminded me about her grandfather, John Pate who was almost 60 years old when my grandmother Classie, his last child, was born. In fact, in those days it wasn’t unusual for older men to start a second family.  

Dr. Gates' research was able to trace Gloria’s maternal ancestor who was born in Africa. He pointed out that this find was something that not too many researchers are able to achieve. This is possibly true in 95% of cases but not all!  Early this year, I went to one of my paternal grandfather niece’s birthday party and her son James ask me to see what I could find on his grandfather, Walter Williams. I researched Walter’s family and gave James my findings.  I wrote a post about Walter which I used as one of my 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge. My post was seen by another researcher whose ancestor own slaves in the same area where James’ great-grandfather was a slave.  This researcher sent me a few documents, including a document which was a list of slaves that the Williams Family brought from Barbados to Greene County, North Carolina from 1812-1834. This slave list was divided into seven sets of what appear to me to be families. None of the slaves were born in America all but two were born in Barbados. The other two were born in Africa. Although this research was for my cousin and it doesn’t appear that I have any direct ancestors with the “Williams” surname; I’m keeping this list for two reasons.  First, it’s a great find for anyone researching in Greene County because the courthouse was burned in 1876; therefore a lot of the records were destroyed. Secondly, a number of my relatives were born or raised in Greene County, so this list may come in handy one day and I can say my ancestor was born in Barbados or Africa. Needless to say, in this genealogy journey, you never know where you will find your Daddy or your ancestors.

This document was provided by Henry A. Williams descendant, Melanie Williams.

Monday, September 22, 2014

And Her Name Is...Anica/Anna Kaye Barnes - 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks:Week #38

This post is in response to Amy Johnson Crow's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.  If you want to know more about this challenge check out her blog at NO STORY TOO SMALL. This week I’m writing about my great-great-great grandmother, Anica/Anarchy/Anna Kaye Barnes who I will call Anna (1822? - 1914).

Over 25 years ago at a Barnes Family Picnic, one of my cousins gave a brief family history about our ancestor. It was the history that her grandmother, Emma Barnes Dickerson, told her before Emma died.  My cousin said that Anna Barnes was the daughter of a Black Creek Indian and a Black man and that Anna was the mother of three children.  Anna's husband or mate was Bob Barnes who was sold off to Durham NC and later sold further down South. 

This post is dedicated to Anna; I don't know what her real name was because I've seen so many different spellings of her name. I also don't know how she became a landowner?  By 1880 Anna owned her own home and when she died she left her land to her 3 children.  Will I ever find out how she got her land? I don't know.

According to the 1870 census in the Holden township of Wayne County, North Carolina, 37 year old Anica Barnes and her children: 18 year old Elijah and Sallie who was 16 years old were living in John Jinkins' house. Besides Anna's family, there was a black man named John Powell living with the Jinkins family. Mr. Jinkins was a carpenter who had $450 of real estate and $500 personal property but why did he have black people living in his household, I don't know why Jinkins who was 39 years old would allow two Black men living in the same home as with his wife and two young daughters, perhaps they were living in separate quarters away from the main home. Maybe one day, I will find the connection between Mr. Jinkins and Anna.

1870 Census for Anna Barnes' Family

Nearby, living in the same county was Anna's daughter Trecinda. Trecinda and her children, Jane and Edwin were living with John and Jane Sauls. Trecinda and John’s wife Jane were described as housekeepers which seems strange that Trecinda was not working, but this may be because of one year old Edwin.  I also don’t understand why Trecinda wasn’t living with her mother.

1870 Census for Trecinda Barnes's Family

In 1880, Aniky (yep, that's how it was spelled.) is 50 years old and she's living in her own home with her two sons, 26 year old Elijah and Eddie who was 10 years old. Elijah’s occupation was listed as a farm laborer and Eddie was attending school, not a farm hand like his brother. Eddie was perhaps Trecinda's son Edwin who may have been visiting his grandmother when the census taker was in town. Meanwhile, Anna has her own home; I wonder how she purchase this home.

1880 Census for Anna Barnes and her sons.

It’s the year 1900 and Anna was still living in the Nahunta area of Wayne County but now, by herself.  She was a 69 year old widow and on this census Anna answered the question about her marriage by saying that she was 25 years of age when she married.  Anna also said that she was the mother of 3 not 4 children which leads me to believe that Eddie was her grandson Edwin. Her occupation was listed as a day laborer. She was described as a literate day laborer and she owned her own home which was not on a farm but in the city.

1900 Census for Anna Barnes

Also in 1900, Anna’s son Elijah lived in Rocky Mount (Nash County) with his family.  He’s 44 years old, instead of 48. He stated that his birth month was June 1856 and that he had been married for 14 years.  He’s a literate porter who worked on the train.  Elijah’s wife was name Janie who was born in 1875 and 25 years old and was the mother of 6 children: 13 year old Nettie, 7 year old Sarah, 6 year old Grandville, 4 year old Edgar, 2 year old Beatrice and 5 month old Katie. Janie needed a break but that’s just my two cents. Elijah had 2 borders who may had been co-workers: Charlie Bowser, a 42 years old described as a Porter and Isaac Richardson who was 35 years old and a machinist.

1900 Census Elijah Barnes and Family

Apparently Elijah stayed with his mom until he got married in 1886. I wonder where did he marry in Wayne or Nash County?  Elijah Barnes was 30 years old when he married his 12 year old child bride, Janie.  He’s not home all the time because of his job, a Porter on the train. I wonder if his borders were his wife’s relatives.  Finally, why did he move so far from his mom. Rocky Mount is 45 minutes via car and longer via mule and buggy. Elijah also had a daughter named Nettie.  This must be a special name in our family that perhaps was passed down from generation to generation.

By 1910, Anna was living beside her daughter Sallie. Both women were widows living in Fremont.

1910 Census for Anna and Sallie Barnes

On March 2, 1914, Anna Barnes died in Fremont, NC. Her death certificate stated that she was 92 years old but if you review the census from 1870 - 1910 her age varied. Her daughter Trecy (Trecinda) Barnes was the informer for the death certificate. Trecy stated that Anna was born in Wilson County but she lived most of her life in Fremont which is in Wayne County.  Perhaps Anna wanted to get away from her former life in Wilson. 

Besides discovering where Anna was born, I discovered her parents names: Robert and Charity Stancil. Charity, another name that runs in our Barnes family, was the Black Creek Indian. I still have not found Anna's connection to Native Americans besides oral history. I seriously would like to find out how did Anna acquire her land because  maybe the two are tied. Was it through her Black Creek heritage because the 5 civilized tribes: Creeks, Cherokees, Chickasaw, Seminoles, Choctaws provided reparations to some of their slaves. 

Anna Barnes Death Certificate

In Anna's Will dated 1906, she left her land to Sallie, Elijah and Treacy. She also left personal property such as a clothes basket, straw bonnet and an iron to her granddaughter Jane Woodward and a trunk to her granddaughter Emma Barnes. The same Emma Barnes who I mentioned earlier in this post. Emma was 16 when Anna died.

Anna's Will  

Trecinda Barnes 5/1849 - 10/15/1929 

According to her death certificate, Trecinda's father was Peter Barnes not Bob Barnes. Interesting enough Trecinda was the mother of 6 children but in her Will dated 10/22/1928, she left all her belongs to her daughter Jane Barnes Woodard. 

Trecinda Barnes Death Certificate

Trecinda Barnes' Will

Elijah Barnes (1854-?) married Janie and possibly a second wife named Julia.

It's not clear if Elijah was twice married because of the clarity of handwriting, but after 1910, I could not find a Elijah on the census. If he died before 1913, then there is no death certificate. By 1920, Elijah's widow and the youngest children are living in Baltimore, MD. He was the father of the following children:

1900 Census for Elijah Barnes and Family

Sallie Barnes (1860 - 7/28/1930) married Isiah Barnes and according to the 1900 census she gave birth to 15 children including the following:

On Sallie's death certificate, her father's name is Peter Barnes. 

Sallie Barnes Death Certificate

My analysis: 

I have lots of questions; such as how did Aunt Emma know that Bob went to Durham and then "down South"?  How did the family keep in touch with him during slavery times? Perhaps, one day Bob's mystery will be solved and then, I will dedicate a post to him. 

Wilson county was formed in 1855 and it was formed from Edgecombe, Johnston, Nash and Wayne Counties. If Anna was born around 1822; she wasn't born in Wilson but perhaps she was born in the area that was originally Edgecombe or Nash county. I say that because her daughter Trecinda settled in Wilson and her son Elijah moved to Rocky Mount which is located in both Nash and Edgecombe counties.  

I believe that Anna's husband name was Peter and not Bob and if I could find Elijah's death certificate it might confirm my assumption since two of the 3 children lists the father's name as Peter.  I don't know what Anna's real name was but I believe it was Anica.  I also wonder if Anna was an only child and if her death certificate was correct. Finally who was Anna's slaveowner...the Barnes or the Stancils?


1870 Census Place: Holden, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: M593_1165; Page: 131A; Image: 265; Family History Library Film: 552664.

1870 Census Place: Nahunta, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: M593_1165; Page: 171B; Image: 346; Family History Library Film: 552664.

1880 Census Place: Fremont, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: 986; Family History
Film: 1254986; Page: 650D; Enumeration District: 301; Image: 0886.

1900 Census Place: Fremont, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: 1223; Page: 13B; Enumeration District: 0108; FHL microfilm: 1241223.

1900 Census Place: Rocky Mount, Nash, North Carolina; Roll: 1208; Page: 26A; Enumeration District: 0064; FHL microfilm: 1241208.

1910 Census Place: Nahunta, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: T624_1137; Page: 8A; Enumeration District: 0113; FHL microfilm: 1375150.

North Carolina, Death Certificates, 1909-1975 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2007.

North Carolina State Board of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics. North Carolina Death Certificates. Microfilm S.123. Rolls 19-242, 280, 313-682, 1040-1297. North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, North Carolina.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: #35 – Mark Green

Mark Green was my maternal Great-Great-Uncle who was the brother of Classie Green McCall, my Great-Great-Grandmother.

Mark was born around 1844 in Pitt County, North Carolina. However, it appears that he lived most of his life in the Nahunta area which is in Wayne County, North Carolina. He married Ann Roundtree who was the daughter of Thomas and Fannie Roundtree.  I could not find their cohabitation record which is a document that tells how long former slaves had been living together as a married couple. Mark and Ann were probably slaves in one of the surrounding counties where the cohabitation records were destroyed such as Greene County. They were the parents of Sallie (1870-9/8/1938), Joseph (1872-?), Ceasar (1874-3/14/1948), Albert (1876-?), Willie (5/1878-4/29/1948), Fannie (1886-?) and Nelley (8/1887-?).

Throughout the Censuses from 1870-1920, I have never seen any additional family members, besides their children and Mark's brother Joseph, listed in Mark’s house. Therefore I was very surprised when I came across a few listings in the Goldsboro North Carolina Messenger newspaper where Mark paid pauper fees for his brother and his mother, unfortunately, their names were not listed. I assume that the brother was Joseph however, it could had been a fee for another brother.  If not, why was Mark paying a fee for his brother who lived in Mark’s home. I don’t understand how the “poorhouse” fees worked. But apparently, the fee was paid every month. But what about his mother? His mother was ALIVE but she was living in the “poorhouse?” Why wasn’t she living with my ancestor, her daughter Classie or her son Mark. I have no information on Mark and Classie's parents and this is the first "tidbit" that I have on his mother. These news articles leaves me with more questions than answers. 

Excerpt from the Goldsboro Messenger newspaper - Thursday, June 20, 1878

Excerpt from Goldsboro Messenger newspaper - Monday, Nov. 18, 1878

Ann Green died on January 22, 1929 Fremont, North Carolina. She was buried at Daniels Quarter Graveyard aka Cemetery. If Mark and the rest of his family were buried at the same cemetery, then sadly I can't visit their graves because the cemetery no longer exist and the graves were moved and its questionable where the graves have been moved to.

Death certificate for Ann Roundtree Green
I don’t know when Mark died but it was after 1920 and before his wife died in 1929. It’s a mystery why I can’t find his death certificate because on paper, Mark appeared to be well known in the community. For instance, Mark’s is mention in a book as the Justice of Peace for Fremont, North Carolina. On the 1870 and 1880 census, Mark was described as a Farm Laborer but perhaps Mark had multiple jobs because I found a few documents that listed him as the mayor, and if it had not been for these documents and my mom’s recollection; I possibly would had never known about Uncle Mark's standing in the community. To me, that is quite an feat for a former slave.

Excerpt from The Heritage of Wayne County North Carolina, 1982

My mom recalls hearing that Mark’s brother Joseph was handicapped. In fact, on the 1870 census, Joseph was described as “dum” but Joseph was probably mentally disabled. Family history also stated that Mark’s wife, Ann, would beat Joseph. It appears that Joseph had a hard life. Its ironic that the 1870 census looks like the 1920 census with the same four members (Mark, Ann, their daughter Sallie and Joseph) that were living together in 1870 are still living together as a family in 1920… 50 years later. 

1870 Census for Mark Green's family

1920 Census for Mark Green and family

I still have a lot of questions regarding Mark and his brother Joseph such as when did Joseph die and what cause his death? I also would like to know what became of Joseph and Mark’s parents, my great-great-great grandparents. If they were born in Pitt County, exactly how did the family arrive in Wayne County, North Carolina. If anyone, can provide more information about Uncle Mark don’t hesitate to contact me.

Thanks for stopping by!


The Heritage of Wayne County, North Carolina, 1982/the Wayne County Historical Association, Inc. et al;pg. 39. North Carolina, Death Certificates, 1909-1975, North Carolina Death Certificates. Microfilm S.123. Rolls 19-242, 280, 313-682, 1040-1297. North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, North Carolina.
1870 Census Place: Nahunta, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: M593_1165; Page: 159B; Image: 322; Family History Library Film: 552664.
1880 Census Place: Nahunta, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: 986; Family History Film: 1254986; Page: 663A; Enumeration District: 301; Image: 0913.
1920 Census Place: Great Swamp, Wayne, North Carolina; Roll: T625_1328; Page: 12B; Enumeration District: 118; Image: 899.