A couple of days ago, I discovered a new genealogy blog – Robyn’s blog, Reclaiming Kin. I found her through Randy’s “Best Of the Genea-Blogs” post from Sunday. Well, yesterday she posted on using court records for research and her experience of looking at records in Edgecomebe County, NC inspired my Tombstone Tuesday post of the gravesite of Kemp Plummer Battle, a resident of Edgecombe County whom owned some of my ancestors.
Well, last night Robyn emailed me stating that she had information to share regarding Kemp. We spoke on the phone last night and it turned out that she had a great discovery! The name Kemp P. Battle sounded familiar to her, so she went through some of her files and sent me a wonderful document.
Last year, while visiting the North Carolina State Archives, she’d transcribed some labor contract records from the Freedmen’s Bureau (M1909, Roll #56) which included some records of former slaves of Kemp’s. The labor contracts were for work in the two years following the Civil War and Robyn explained that some were very formal, others were very casual. In some cases, family clusters were maintained.
Among the transcription was my 4th great-grandfather, Allen Wimberly! Here is the list she provided:
Joe Battle, Henderson Dorsey, Jason Spicer, Jim Lawrence, York Lawrence, Jim McNear, Allan Wimberly, Alfred Wimberly, Joe Wimberly, Haywood Battle, Lewis Battle, Redding Battle, Norfolk Battle, Isabella Battle, Hardy Battle, Orph Battle, Jason Battle, Sarah Battle, Jerry Battle, Norfleet Dancy, & Illiad Dancey.
In addition to my own Allen Wimberly, some of these names I have seen previously in census records and county cohabitation records. I am not sure how they may connect with my own family, but I certainly need to continue to put these pieces together. I also note the name “Jim McNear” which may be a variant of my McNair surname — Allen’s daughter Mariah married Rufus McNair; and Rufus I suspect to be a slave of Dr. Augustus Harvey McNair.
I am very excited about this and during the course of our conversation, Robyn stressed the need to take advantage of local Family History Centers for access to records. While I’ve known I need to do this, I have not managed to follow-through with actually ordering any records. There are two locations in my county and they both are about 45 minutes away from me, but I’m going to have to just go! So, one of them is open the 3rd Saturday of each month, so I hereby resolve to take a field trip this Saturday to go and place an order for at least two films.
Here is my 1st list of film to work through. It may take me several months since I will probably order only two at a time, but at least I have some identified right?
|Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Original wills Ausley, Joseph – Bryan, Thoma||Film #1548856|
|Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Original wills Killibrew, John I. – Middleton, S. O.||Film #1571217|
|Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Estate records 1748-1917 Barnes, Archelaus – Battle, Joe||Film #2069673|
|Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Estate records 1748-1917 Battle, John – Bell, Bythel||Film #2069674|
|Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Estate records 1748-1917 Law, William – Mayberry, Charles||Film #2070395|
|Wills, 1663-1978; estate papers, 1748-1917 (Edgecombe County): Estate records 1748-1917 Williams, Henry – Winstead, Richard||Film #2070963|
|Will records and index, 1760-1964, with a few marriages (Jones County, NC): Index to wills 1779-1964||Film #386902|
|Will records and index, 1760-1964, with a few marriages (Jones County, NC): Wills 1760-1842||Film #19228|
|Will records and index, 1760-1964, with a few marriages (Jones County, NC): Wills 1778-1868||Film #19238 Items 1-3|
|Pre-1914 cemetery inscription survey, Columbus Co. (NC)||Film #882937 Item 11|
|Pre-1914 cemetery inscription survey, Martin Co. (NC)||Film #882938 Item 25|
|Civil actions concerning slaves and free persons of color (Craven County, North Carolina), 1775-1885||No Film # in record|
|Craven County, North Carolina, pre-Civil War slave related papers, including petitions for freedom, 1775-1861||Film 2299351 Item 2|
This will be quite intersting. Thank you Robyn for an exciting discovery and for inspiration!