Fourth Generation Inclusive

Historical Documents of Genealogical Interest to Researchers of North Carolina's Free People of Color

They built a school for themselves.

Prior to 1835 these people claim to have attended the schools of the whites. In 1859 they built a school for themselves, which was taught by Alvin Manuel, a Croatan. After the War they were given a public school in this community, but the effort to force the attendance of children of negro blood in this school brought on friction and finally resulted in the withdrawal of county support and disrupted the school.

From George E. Butler, “The Croatan Indians of Sampson County, North Carolina. Their Origin and Racial Status. A Plea for Separate Schools,” (1916).

Michael Alvin Manuel was born about 1837 in Sampson County and died in 1922 in Wayne County.

In the 1850 census of Northern District, Sampson County: Michael Manuel, 63, cooper; wife Fereby, 49; and children Gideon, 19, Cintilla, 16, Drusilla, 15, Michael, 13, Eden, 11, John, 9, William, 7, Enoch, 4, and Nancy, 1; all described as mulatto.

Jordan Harris and sons, Lewis and Andrew.

ImageImageImageJordan Harris (1822-1916) and his sons Lewis Harris (1852-1931) and Andrew Harris (1854-1932) of Wilkes County.

For more about the Harris family, see

Photos found at 

He has a free wife near Stantonsburg.

$50 Reward. RAN AWAY from the subscriber about 6 years ago, a negro man named JACOB. He is about 35 years of age, 5 feet 6 or 7 inches high, about the common color, tolerably active, has narrow feet, and a small scar over one of his eyes. It is probably he has altered his name, as he frequently passes from Stantonsburg to Newbern. He has a free wife by the name of Rancy Artis, living near Stantonsburg, & it is likely he attempts to pass for a free man. The above reward will be given to any person who shall deliver said Negro to me, living five miles about Stantonsburg, or confine him in Jail, so that I get him again. All masters of vessels are forwarned carrying him off. JOEL NEWSOM.  Wayne county, Aug. 7

Raleigh Register and North Carolina Weekly Advertiser, 19 November 1824.

Onslow County Apprentices, 1828-1833.

Durant Dove and Willis Dove were bound to James Mills in 1828.

In the 1850 census of Upper Richlands, Onslow County, Durant Dove, 40, mulatto, wife Anny and children Margarett Ann, Eliza Jane, Wm., Julia, Nancy, Durant, Edward, Mandy, Joshua, and Henry.

Durant Henderson and Willis Henderson were bound to James Mills in 1829.

Jacob [no last name] was bound to John Langley in 1829.

Silas White, son of Esther White, was bound to Jesse Sandlin in 1830.

Jesse Holly was bound to Phenehas Rouse in 1832.

Tom Hammonds was bound to Leroy Hammonds in 1832.

In the 1850 census of Half Moon, Onslow County: Thos. Hammonds, 55, farmer, wife Sena, 55, Susan Hammonds, 35, Thomas Hammonds, 24, Seana Littleton, 14, and Marthy White, 13. Thomas the elder reported $800 personal property. [Sidenote: if Thomas were the son of Thomas and Sena Hammonds, a married couple, upon what basis was he bound out?]

Edward Griffith and Sarah Griffith were bound to David Jarman in 1833.

This is possibly the Edward Griffith listed in the 1840 census of South Side of Neuse River, Craven County, as the head of a household of three free people of color.

Her husband was a pensioner.

State of North Carolina, County of Granville

On this fourth day of February One thousand eight hundred and fifty six before the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions held within and for the County and State aforesaid, personally appeared Mrs. Tabitha Pettiford aged Sixty eight years a resident near Oxford in the County of Granville in the State of North Carolina who being duly Sworn according to law doth on her oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the provision made by the Act of Congress passed on the third day of February A.D. 1853 granting pensions to widows of persons who Served during the Revolutionary War that she is the widow of George Pettiford deceased who was a Private in the North Carolina Continental line in the War of the Revolution that her said husband was a Pensioner of the United States under the act of March 18th A.D. 1818 at the rate of Ninety six dollars per annum which was paid to him at the agency in Fayettville in the State of North Carolina she further states that she was married to the said George Pettiford in Granville County in the Tenth day of May 1837 by one John Mallory a Minister of the Gospel and that her name before her said marriage was Tabitha Johnson that her said husband died at his residence in the County of Granville in the State of North Carolina on the Fifth day of February in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty three that She was not married to the said George Pettiford prior to the second day of January eighteen hundred but at the time above stated she further stated that there is a Public record of her marriage and that there is no Private record of her marriage and further declares that she is now a widow and has not married since his death that she cannot file herewith her husband’s original certificate of pension from the fact that it was sent to the office of the 3d addition of the treasury to which she refers in support of this her claim.

She hereby appoints J. C. Codner of Smithfield North Carolina (irrevocably) her true and lawful attorney to prosecute this her claim for pension to receive the certificate when issued and to do all other acts necessary and proper in the premises.       Tabitha X Pettiford

L. A. Paschall Ch’mn of Granville County Court

From the file of George Pettiford, Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files, National Archives and Records Administration.

In the 1850 census of Oxford, Granville County: George Petterford, age 106, and wife Tobitha, 47. Next door, Edmond Pettyford, 50, and wife Rebecca, 52.

George Pettiford married Taby Johnson, 1 May 1837, in Granville County. Edmond Pettiford was bondsman, and G.C. Wiggins witnessed.