In Search Of Rodger

Table of Contents

Title Page
Table of Contents
Text Item
Descendant Fan Tree of Maricay Midyett
Descendant Fan Tree of David Midyett
Register Report of Maricay Midyett
Descendant Fan Tree of Wm.Rodger Smith
Register Report of Wm.Rodger Smith
Register Report of Anson Gibbs
Register Report of Tamer McCotter
Descendant Tree of Henry Moses Smith
Descendant Tree of Moses Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of Odel Smith
Descendant Tree of Zulener Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of Eula Mae Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of Gertrude Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of Helen Elizabeth Smith
Descendant Tree of Indiana Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of William Roger Smith
Descendant Tree of Annie Marie Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of Lodica Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of Brevia Smith
Descendant Fan Tree of Geneva Smith



The "In Search of Rodger 1710-2006" book, got started in 1992
at the 1991 family reunion, when I asked Aunt Nana why the
family history was so short?
Indiana Jones was my aunt, she asked me to help do the family
history for the next family reunion. For as long as I could remember
Aunt Nana, had been doing the family genealogy
for the Family reunions. So I agreed to do some research,,
since I was retired and had some time between my fishing trips.
Little did I know at the time that it would end up being
a eleven year journey, that is eleven years and counting.
I started out trying to find out who my great grandfather and mother were?
Were they enslaved? or were they free? The answer to these and other
question has lead me on a eleven plus year genealogy journey.
I have been to every Courthouse, library, and college within a six county radius,
Hyde, Craven, and Pamlico counties. Also Lenior, Beaufort, and Carteret
counties. In Hyde County where my family was first found.
I walked on the same dirt roads and fields they slaved in. I went to the
slaveholders homes and checked their personal files on micro film, and
the court archives. I trace them through the census, Bill of sales, Wills, Deeds
and other court papers. I looked in every nook and cranny I could
think of. Some times it drove me to tears, but I kept on looking,
I kept on searching. I had to know the answer to all my questions,
and the more I learned the more I wanted to know. How much did they
sell for? Who brought them? How old were they? Who were their
parents? Where in Africa, and from what tribe did they come from?
What was the name of the slave ship, and who owned it? And on an
on an on. As you can see this can go on and on until it becomes a complete
obsession, all consuming. I'm sure you have realized by now it can be
very expensive. I have not bothered to even try to add up the cost,
but I know it's in the thousands. Thank God for the computer and the internet,
without them I could not have found as much information as I have.
I have to also thank God that our ancestors were so valuable,
the slaveholders kept very good records of their property.
Every transaction was well documented, all nice and legal.
As I was looking at the old records I would be hoping that the owner
of my family would sale them or put them in their Wills,
because then they would be listed by names and some times age,
and if I was lucky their would be a description of them. How tall,
weight, complexion etc.., It was at these times that I would pause
at the micro film page and visualize my ancestor, and who in the
family they would look like. These were the most tearful times,

it was at these times that I knew why I was doing the research,
and that it would never end. I could not stop until
I brought them back to life, each and everyone of my family.
My finding them and telling the family about them gave them new life,
it made them real. They were no longer lost in the dusty pages of history,
now their story could be told. Now their children, children,
children will know them, and their stories.

My search for Rodger has lead others to research their families roots.
I hope it will be an inspiration to you to start your search.
Your family is waiting to be discovered by you.
Good hunting!!!!

Bill Smith


 The year was about 1710, some where is South America, Maricay was
born. Maricay is the oldest one of our relative that I have been
able to trace so far. In my search for Rodger Smith's father and mother,
I discovered that David Pain/Midyett was Rodger Smith father, and Louisa
O'Neal/Credle was his mother. David Pain/Midyett parents was America and Kitty
Midyett. America was called America because he was born on the fourth
of July, in 1776. This was the year and date that the United States
was formed.

America father was Charles Midyett, his mother was Elizabeth Jennett
she was said to have been on the English slave ship "Good Intent". In
1767 the Good Intent carrying about 300 Africans was shipwreck off
of Cape Hatteras. The Name of the captain of the ship was "Capt. Copland"
The ship's Human cargo ended up in Hyde Co. NC. Elizabeth
was trace to this ship. I believe that other members of our family
also came from that ship.

As of now I have yet to find our where in Africa the ship came from,
but my search continues.

Charles mother and father was Hannah and Maricay Midyett. Maricay
was a mestizo (a Indian) from a place in Venezuela called Maracay. He
probably belonged to one of the hunting and gathering tribes of that
area. Maricay and Hannah was freed by Daniel Midyett in 1808. They
are the first members of our family to be free that I could find documents

The second oldest of our relative that I was able to trace was Tamer
She was born about 1760, 16 years before the thirteen Colony declared
their independence from England and 27 years before the declaration
of Independence as signed. Tamer was born in Hyde Co. North Carolina,
she was owned by the William Gibbs family of Engelhard NC. She was
first found in Black beard the pirate, chart book, called Teach's book. All
of the names of the Gibbs family, along with their birth and death
records were keep there. The names of the black people they owned
were keep there also. The records said that Tamer was born August
18, 1770. I believed when She was about 30 years old she was sold
to Archibald McCotter. In 1800 her son Samuel was born in North Craven
Co. or Pamlico Co.(Pamlico Co. did not become a county until 1872). We
next find Tamer in the last will and testament of Archibald McCotter, where
he leaves her to his son Burney McCotter is 1833. The last documented
proof of Tamer is on the l870 census. She is living with her son Samuel
McCotter, he was 70 years old and Tamer was 110 years old. Samuel
was the father of Oscar McCotter, Oscar McCotter was the father of
Rachel McCotter, Rachel Married William Adam Gibbs. Their first child
was William Gibbs or Willie Gibbs the name he was better known by. Willie
Gibbs married Indiana Moore, their last child was Ida Mae Gibbs, who
married Henry Moses Smith.

Henry Moses Smith father was Wm. Rodger O'Neal/Smith, his mother was
Mahalia Selby/Greene, Mahalia father was Elijah "Lizy" Greene and her mother was
Tamer Greene. Rodger O'Neal/Smith father was David Pain/Midyett his mother was
Louisa O'Neal/Credle. Aunt Louisa says that her mother wanted to name her
Ola but her father wanted her named after his mother Louisa. She
says that her mother had one brother name Larry Green, her mother told her
that when she was about 3 years old and her brother was 2, years old. Her
mother died, and her father had remarried. His new wife was mistreating
her and her brother so a rich white lady took them and raised them.

Aunt Louisa says her mother came from Beaufort in Carteret Co. I
was unable to document this, but we first fine documented proof of
Rodger and Mahalia on their marriage license 1873, and the
1880- census of Hyde Co. in Swan Quarter
township. They had 3 children, Inna who was 5 years old Moses was
3, and Rosella was 5 months old. According to the census Rodger was
30 years old and Mahalia was 22, both Roger and Mahalia parents were
born in North Carolina.


After the Civil War was over, some time in the late 1860's. Old man
Jacob McCotter needed farm hands to work his farms, so he hired a
large boat to bring some of our ancestors from Hyde Co. this boat
landed in Lowland. Rodger and his family migrated to Pamlico Co. in
the early 1880's. They also came by boat and landed in Lowland.

The roads were not improved as they are today. They would walk miles
and miles on dirt, sand and muddy roads. Their pilgrimage sometimes
took weeks it required three days for them to travel the distance that
we now commonly make in three hours. When the members of our family
decided to move to Pamlico Co. they would meet at some stated time
and place and travel together. Some had mules and carts, some had
none. All could not ride, they would put all their belonging in their
carts, along with food for themselves and their animals, only the
driver would ride. Sometimes when a person had become unable to walk
without rest, he or she was persuaded to get up and ride. The driver
would dismount and walk. Often when the Carvan had hiked about thirty
miles, or a days journey, and they were not near some village, town
or other public place, they would camp out on the roadside that night,
eat and sleep until the next morning. Everyone did not sleep at
the same time, some kept watch while the others slept.

Like the self sufficient pioneers who settled this country, our families
built their homes, made their clothes, planted and harvested crops,
and proved for their every need. Resorting to the general store only
for things that couldn't be produced at home. In contrast with todays
prices, most food could be brought for pennies, like flour, lard, and
meat, costing three, five and seven cents a pound respectively. This
money was made by working cleaning white people homes or toiling
in the cotton fields. For forty or fifty cents a day, those meager
wages along with the money received from selling farm produce, made
up the family total income, just enough to pay bills.

Aunt Louisa said, "That plenty of work and little play was the motto
by which they lived by." She would rise at the crack of dawn, do
her chores and then trot off to school, if it was in session, since
it lasted only two months of the summer and two months in the winter.
The schools were one room school houses, crudely finisher and heated
with wood burning stove.

They worked on the area farms, clearing farm land digging drainage
canals and in the lumber camps. They worked heard from sun up to
sunset and saved what they could so that they could buy land and build
their homes.

Rodger and Mahalia last child was Aunt Louisa, she was born in 1896
on the Abbott farm, Dr. Delon Henry Abbott was a former union army surgeon
who founded Venemere in the 1870"S. He purchased 3000 acres of
farm and timber land. He was called a carpet bagger, by the Pamlico
Co. natives. He entered politics on a larger scope He became a member
of the NC General Assembly, serving as Senator for the Second Senatorial
District for two years, 1895-1897.
Dr. Abbott owned the steam powered saw mill across the
river at Vanemere and the men would string their logs together and
float them across the river from "The lumber landing" to the saw mill.

Rodger Smith purchased 3, acres of land from Stephen and Georgeann
Credle for $ 55,00 on November 18, 1902. Rodger and his oldest son
Henry Moses built their first home on this land. It was a 3, room
house consisting of a sitting room with 1, bed that Rodger and Mahalia
used and one bedroom with two beds where the girls sleep, and the
loft were the boys slept. The kitchen was separated from the house. Rodger
and Mahalia had 13 children (10 lived). By the 1910 census only 6,
of their children were still alive. Rodger had died some time between
1902, and 1910. The precise date can not be determined from existing
records, because birth and death records were not keep in North Carolina
until, 1914. The 1910 census shows Mahalia as the head of the house
hold, she had 4, children living at home Abbie, William, Louisa, and
John and his wife Fanny Kenyan.

Moses had married his first wife Ann Eliza Ballance, the daughter of James
Edward T. Ballance, and Joanna Clark or (Grandma Jo the name she was
known by). Joanna was the daughter of Spencer Clark and Sally Clark. Edward
Ballance was the son of Benjamin and Grace Ballance of Hyde Co. Moses
and Ann Eliza had 5, children Mitchel, Moses, Odell, Benjamin, and
Zulener. Ann Eliza died one day before her 34, birthday August 17,
1914. This left Moses a widower with 3, children with ages ranging
from 3, to 9 years old. Ann Eliza told her husband Moses, he should
marry the girl that they had working for them if anything was to happen
to her, she felt that she would make him a good wife and mother for
his children. That girl was 20 years younger then he was , her name
was Ida Mae Gibbs.

Moses married Ida Mae Gibbs on Oct. 3, 1914. Moses was to busy
working to apply for his marriage license so he had his bother John
to apply for it for him. This was not unusual because James Linton
applied for his license to marry Ann Eliza in 1897. They were married
by Adam O'Neal at Missionary Baptist Church in Mesic North Carolina. The
witnesses present at the marriage were Edward Ballance, W.H.Credle,
and B. Fortisque.

When Moses married Ida Mae they were married by W.K. Jones a Justice
of the Peace, at the Missionary Baptist Church in Mesic North Carolina. The
witnesses were Joshua Jones and Roy Carvan. Moses and Ida Mae had
11, children. Eula Mae, Gertrude, Helen Elizabeth, Indiana, (William
Rodger who died before his first birthday). William Rodger, Annie Marie,
Lodica, Brevia Lee, (Correatha who died before her 4, birthday during
the 1919 flu epidemic). and Geneva. Ida Mae died on Dec. 27, 1944,
2 days after Christmas and Moses died April 22, 1949 five years later.

When it came to moving about, ones own two feet were the surest way
of getting there. Sun shining brightly or raining or snowing our
people walked. Teams of oxen were their first means of transportation,
but as time passed, almost every family had a mule and cart.

Improper care of farm animals, neglecting chores, or quarreling with
your brothers or sisters, was a sure way to get a whipping, with a
belt or a swish (small tree limb), and oh!! boy if you disrespect
your elders, by talking back or voicing your opinion you would find
yourself getting up off the floor.

During the 1890's and early 1900's Rev. Burrus was the only black
person registered to vote in Pamlico County. This was attributed
to the fact that he was the only black person able to pass the extremely
stiff and unfair literacy tests for voting.


There has always been free blacks living in New Bern, dating all the
way back to Colonial days. The 1850 census of Craven and Pamlico
Counties, indicates that approximately (1,536) free blacks lived in
this area.

In March of 1862, many of the blacks in eastern North Carolina anticipated
that a great change was about to occur in their lives. Rumors had
reached them from Roanoke Island that the Yankee soldiers were coming
to set them free. Union forces under General Ambrose E. Burnside
had indeed landed a Roanoke Island only a month before and were then
in route to New Bern. In the spring of 1862, black refugees who came
into federal lines in North Carolina did not yet enjoy the legal
status of freemen, but it was the policy of many union commanders,
including General Burnside, to provide refuge for blacks who fled
to territory held by the Union Army, and to used many of them as laborers.
Although, the Emancipation Proclamation was still month in the future, a policy
of treating escaped blacks as freemen had already been effectuated
by the Union Army. As the war continued, additional United States
Officer in the south began safeguarding the freedom of fugitive blacks
and utilizing their labor. Some did this as a war measure to aid
the Union effort, others because they felt that human bondage was
morally wrong. After a brief battle with confederate defenders, the
federal seized New Bern, and on March 14th 1862, the blacks in the
area turned out to greet their liberators with shouts of jubilation.

According to the James, annual report of the superintendent of Negro
affairs in NC. 1864, there were 8,591, freemen (blacks) living in
federally occupied New Bern North Carolina. One year later in January
1865, there was 10,782, and by the end of the Civil War there were
350,000 freed blacks living in North Carolina.

In 1866 blacks were required to register there marriages, if one or
both of the partner were a former slave. They started coming into
the Craven County court house, on June 2, 1866 Thur August 31, 1866.


had been living together as husband and wife for three years
on August 27, 1866.

SAMUEL Mc COTTER & ROSE JONES: Stated that they
had been living together as husband and wife for one year, on August 30, 1866


DAVID MIDGETT Was found on the 1870 census listed as DAVID PAIN.
RODGER SMITH When he got married in 1873 listed himself as
LOUISA O'NEAL is listed on the 1880 census as LOUISA CREDLE.
Her daughter LUCRETIA also became a LUCRETIA CREDLE.


MARICAY MIDYETT: Was owned by Thomas Midyett who left him and his
wife Hannah to his wife Bethaney. Bethaney Midyett gave them to Daniel
Midyett Who freed them in 1808.

CHARLES MIDYETT: The son of Maricay was owned by Bethany Midyett
who gave him to her son Banister Midyett.

AMERICA MIDYETT: The son of Charles Midyett was owned by Banister
Midyett America Midyett Sr. died in about 1849 and is buried in the
Nathan O'Neal Cemetery at Mount Pleasant (Hyde Co. NC.)

DAVID PAIN/MIDYETT: The son of America Midyett was
owned by Banister Midyett.

WM. RODGER O'NEAL/SMITH: The son of David Midyett was
owned by Peter Spencer.

MAHALIA SELBY/GREENE: The wife of Rodger Smith was owned
by Calib Spencer
who died in 1859, the blacks he owned was divide among his heirs. Mahalia
was valued at $ 250.00 and given to Peter Spencer.

TAMER McCOTTER: Was owned by William Gibbs who sold her to Archibald
McCotter. In 1833 she was left to Burney McCotter by his father Archibald. Archibald
and Burney are the Great grand father and grandfather of Dr. St. Elmo
McCotter.(of Bayboro).

SAMUEL McCOTTER: The son of Tamer was owned by Archibald McCotter.

ANSON GIBBS: Was owned by Benjamin M. Gibbs, In 1859 he left him
to his four youngest children.

ADAM GIBBS: The son of Anson was owned by Benjamin M. Gibbs who left
him to his son William H. Gibbs.

LORY SLADE: Was owned by John Bell who left her to Henry Slade and
Asa P.Slade in 1846. In 1856 Henry died and left her to be sold
to pay his debts. On May 16, 1856 she was sold at Public auction
in Sladville NC. to Asa P. Slade, for $ 674.00.

JO ANNA WARNER: the daughter of Lory Slade was owned by John Bell
who left her to Sarah and Mary Moore, in 1846

SPENCER CLARK: The son of Keizah Eborn was owned by William Clark,
who died in 1806, and left him to his daughter Polly Clark.






MOSES JR.: was born in 1905 and died in 1991. He married Daisy Ollison
in 1925, they had 5, children Marie, Mary Eliza, William Bradford,
Mahue, and Billy

Moses was a fisherman, he owned a commercial fishing boat. He also
was a farm foreman, and the first black deputy sheriff at Faison beach
in Oriental. Moses and Daisy were married for 66 years until his
death in 1991. They had 21 grand children, 40 great grand children
and one great great grandchild.

ODELL: was born in 1907 and died in 1956. He was married to Ida
Mae Jarvis in 1929, Odell was one of the first blacks to owned an
automobile in Pamlico Co. He lived in New Bern, it has been said that
he was a bootlegger and owned lots of land. He had one son Mack.

ZULENER: was born in 1911, she married Sulton Credle when she was
16 years old in 1927, they had 4 children, Otis Lee (died in early
childhood). William Earl, Wadell, and Verna. Zulener and Sulton were
married for 54 years until his death in 1986. They have 18 grand
children 27 great grand children and ? great great grand children.
Zulener and Sulton both worked and retired from Cherry Point Marine

After the death of Ann Eliza Henry Moses married Ida Mae Gibbs on October
3, 1914, he was 38 years old and Ida Mae was 18 years old. She was
the same age as Moses baby sister, Louisa. Ida Mae was the daughter
of Willie Gibbs and Indiana Moore, who was the daughter of James Grimes
Moore and Joanna Warner.


EULA MAE: was born in 1918 and died in 1980 she was the first of
Moses Smith children to finish college, she decided to go to New York
City in 1939. She was later followed by her sister Lodica, Brevia,
and Annie Marie. She attended Bible college and became a Evangelist
and traveled to Egypt, Jerusalem, and Africa. She Married Iron Clad
Oliver who was 10 years her senior, in 1948 at Mount Olive Baptist
Church in New York City. They had one child Gwendolyn who they adopted
as an infant. Eula and Iron Clad were married for 32 years until
her death in 1980. Iron Clad died 12 years later in 1992.

GERTRUDE: was born on the 4th of July in 1919, She died in 2002,
she was named after her mother sister Annie Gertrude Gibbs.
She married Walter Rhodes
when she was 19 years old and moved to New Bern, because she could
n't stand living in the country (Mesic). They had one child Audrey
and moved to New York City when Audrey was 3 years old. Gertrude
worked at Metropolitan Hospital in N.Y.C. until she retired, she has
3 grand children.

HELEN ELIZABETH: was born in 1921 and died in 1990. She married
James Jones in 1940. They had two children Correatha(who was named
after her mother's sister who died at the age of four). and Ida Mae(who
was named after her mother's mother). Helen and James was married
for 43 years until his death in 1983. They had 3, grand children. Aunt
Helen was also an Ceramic Artist.

INDIANA: was born in 1923 she died in 2001, she was named after her grandmother Indiana
Moore Gibbs. She married Felix Jones in 1942 at the age of 19. They
celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 1992. They was married
for 51 years, until Felix death in January 1994. They had 7, children,
Ray Felix(who died at the age of 27, from leukemia), Isabella, Hilda
Gray, Tony, Valarie, Rodney Lewellyn, and Theron. Indiana and Felix
opened the first black owned business in Mesic NC. in 1949 "Tonny
Inn". Indiana went back to school at the age of 68 and received her
G.E.D. in 1990.

WILLIAM ROGER: was born in 1924, he was name after his grandfather
Wm. Roger and his great grandfather Wm Roger. And his mother father
was named William, He married Flossie Smith in 1946 they had twins
that were (Still born), Carvin, and Samuel Lee. They celebrated their
48th anniversary this year. William Roger worked at the Cherry Point
Marine Base for 42 years, and retired in 1989. He open a store to
serve his community of Mesic. He also is serving as a Alderman for
the town of Mesic NC. William Roger had 2 other children Helen Rose
and Ellin Burnice, 6 grand children and 7 great grand children.

ANNIE MARIE: was born in 1925, she was named after her aunt Annie
Gertrude Gibbs, her mother sister. She had a son by Lewis Hatten
in 1942 "Sonny" William, and in 1946 she married Eugene Bracey. After
her father death in 1949 she moved to New York City. This was after
she kill a rattle snake , that was about 8ft long in the garden. While
in New York she became a Missionary at Bethel Way of The Cross Church,
and help to take the church from a store front to a building capable
of holding 500 worshipers. She worked at Presbyterian Hospital Medical
Center for 39 years before retiring in 1988, and returned to North
Carolina to live. She is helping to build another church here in
New Bern since she returned "Blessed Hope Way of The Cross Church". She
has 5, grand children and 6, great grand children.

LODICA: was born in 1927, she died in 1991 she married Leon Owens
in 1950 they had one child Marlyn. Lodica had followed her sister
Eula to New York in 1946, and went to Apex Beauty school and became
a beautician. she worked as a beautician for her sister Eula in her
beauty shops on 113th street and on 116th street in New York. She
later returned to school and in June of 1974 she received a Bachelor
of Arts Degree in early childhood Education from Fordham University
she worked as a beautician and taught elementary Education at Public
School 76, in the Bronx N.Y. until her death in 1991. She had 4 grand

BREVIA: was born in 1928 she died in2001, she married Thad Jones in 1945. They had
two children Deborah and Steve. She followed her sister Eula to New
York in 1946, She had an apartment on 127th street and Lenox Avenue. I
uses to sit in her window and witch all the beautiful people of Harlem
go strolling by. For a child from a small Town in North Carolina
(Mesic) it made a lasting impression. Brevia also became a beautician
and a milliner (hat maker). She would make the most beautiful feather
hats I have ever seen. Thad died in 1988. They have 3 grand children.

GENEVA: was born in 1933 she attended North Carolina Central university. She
has one child Cynthia. Geneva was working as an admission clerk at
Queen General Hospital in New York City. When her sister Lodica
persuaded her to finish her college education. Geneva attended
Fordham University along with her sister Lodica, and
they Both received their Bachelor of Art degrees in 1974.

Geneva went on to get her Master in Health Care Administration on
October 4, 1978, at Long Island University. She became an administrator
at Queens General Hospital, where she Began as a admission clerk.

Today Geneva is at Bellevue Hospital. She is an associate director
of 911 E.M.S. Departments. She also works with the State of New York
to improve the 110, Voluntarily and Commercial ambulance services
though out the New York region. Her position requires her to spend
a great deal of time in Albany, and to have a good working relationship
with the New York State Legislature.


ROSELLA: was born in 1875. She married James O'Neal on March 5,
1889 at her father home. The ceremony was performed by Rev. Adam
O'Neal, she was 24 years old. Her husband was the son of Rev. O'Neal.

MARTHA: was born in 1880 in Hyde Co. she married Purdee Midyett in
1904, and they had 10, children. Purdee Jr. Thurman, Earnest, Charles,
Della, Stelly, Lillie, Hattie, Addie, Bertie,

ABBIE: was born in 1888. She had 9, children. Norma, Dallas, Clyde,
Winston, Olivia, Rosella, Agustusa, Albert, Clarence.

JOHN: was born in 1891 he married Fanny Kenyan in 1909. They had
3, children. Cliff, Cadella, and Grace. Grace died in 1919 during
the flu epidemic, she was less than 5, years old. John and Fanny
had 5, grand children and 11, great grand children and one great,
great, grandchild.

WILLIAM: was born in 1892. He married Julia Credle in 1915.
They had 2 children Mark Cory(still born), and Willie Marie. William
had another child by Annie G. Gibbs, John Oliver Smith.

LOUISA: Wm. Rodger and Mahalia last child was Aunt Louisa, She married
Elijah Credle on May 25, 1915. They had 3, children Carrie Mae, Lula
Mae, and Leroy. I remember when Aunt Louisa and Elijah Credle had
a store on the corner of Park Ave and Highway 304. I would walk to
the store with my nickels burning a hole in my hands. But when I
returned I was the Happiest little boy in Mesic, with enough candy to last
all day.


Aunt Zulener has been telling a story for years, that was told to
her by her grandmother Joanna. During slavery time when she was a
little girl, Joanna said that her sister Hester Ann, was sold away
from her and she didn't see her again until they were grown women
with children of their own. I have keep this story in mind during
my search, hoping that it would be a clue to finding other members
of our family. I discovered that the story was indeed true and the
facts had not changed over the years.

On December 26, 1846 George A. Selby Partition the court of Pleas
& Quarter to divide and partition between him and his wife Arbella
and Orpah Neal certain slaves. The couple was getting a divorce and
wanted to divide up there property. Hester Ann, along with Lydia,
Leroy, Zion, Francis Ann, Arbella, Kit, John, Thomas, James, Jack,
Ann, and Mary. were valued at $ 3841.00 and went to Oprah Neal. The
second lot consisting of her mother Sally and her father Spencer Clark,
along with Hawkins, William, John, Becton, Jane, Nancy, Eliza, Betty,
Martha, Olivia, Harriet, Caswell, Daniel, William, and Hetty, valued
at $ 3,870.00 went to George A. Selby.

The above facts were found in the court records of Hyde Co. 1847.
Spencer Clark was first owned by William Clark who left him to his
daughter Polly Clark in 1806, sometime between 1806 and 1846 Polly
sold him to George Selby. Spencer and Sally were the parents of Joanna
Clark. Joanna married Edward T. Ballance, and named three of her
children after the black people that were held in bondage with her
parents. Daniel Thomas Ann, and Eliza, "Ann" was Joanna . Joanna
named one of her daughters Ann Eliza. Who was Eliza? Was she Joanna
Sister, who was Daniel and Thomas? Were they brothers? Or grandparents? We
have no way of knowing for sure, what every may be the case we know
that they were held in bondage along with her mother and father, Sally
and Spencer Clark. This is just one of the stories that have been
pass down by our ancestors, it's just a part of our family history. That
has been kept by our parents, grandparents and great, grandparents. The
goal of this book is to record and to preserve this history.

There's another story that has been told for years by Aunt Indiana.
This story was told to her by her great grandmother Joanna Moore,
she was called grandma Jo by her grand children. Grandma Jo told
her about how they use to pray for their freedom, but they couldn't
let the people that owned them see them or hear them. So they would
put their heads down into a big iron pot that they use to wash clothes,
and pray and pray and pray.

When grandma Anna was about 12, years old she says that her brother
Willis was sold away and she didn't see him again until she was a
woman and free. She said the only way that she knew him was by a
scar he had when he was a little boy.

This is another story that time had not change the facts. I did fine
Joanna when she was a little girl, She was with her mother Lory Slade
and her brothers and sisters, and Willis was there, he was to be sold. They
were in the last Will and Testament of John Bell. He was leaving
Lory and her children Seith, Oliver, Plesant, Noah, and Mary, to Henry
Slade and Asa P. Slade. Harriet her two children little Lory and
Jane, along with Caroline and little Joe went to Theopilus M. Bell. Joanna
was to go to Mary and Sarah Moore. Her brother Willis was to be sold
when the term on his lone to Theo M. Bell expired. There are many
more stories like the two that were told here Grasps them savior
them and cherish them because they tell the history of our family
struggle to survive the yoke of bondage.

Aunt Louisa is the last living child of Wm. Rodger and Mahalia. She
was 98 years old her last birthday (Jan. 25 1994) She died in 1994. Most of the family
oral history was provided by her. She was our last link to our ancestors.


That was the cry that was heard on Plantations, from one end of Hyde County
to the other, and from every little Town, from Swan Quarter to LakeLanding. That
was the cry that came from people praying not just for themselves,
but for THEIR CHILDREN AND THEIR CHILDREN, CHILDREN for all those who would follow them. We are that better day they hope for, we are the children they prayed for. They worked their fingers to the bones to give us a better day. They shaded blood sweated and tears, so that their children could do better. We come from a very strong and proud people, they never gave up, and they never gave in. KEEP THE FAITH CHILDREN!!!

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