Surname Study – Vinson – Halifax County, NC – Part 5

Surname Saturday
Howell/Vinson
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.After completing looking at the census records in a Surname Study, I like to look at Death records, particularly death certificates. They are usually accurate about the death date for an individual. Often, they contain accurate information on the current spouse. Occasionally, they include the names of parents, and least reliable the birthdate of the individual. On birthdates, I think the month and day are usually accurate but the year can be way off.

North Carolina Death Certificates, 1909-1976


Birth, Marriage & Death Collection
To continue working on my Vinson Study, I decided to search Ancestry.Com’s search All Collections for people surnamed “Vinson” and any event in “Halifax County, North Carolina.” The results included 897 records. Then I selected Birth/Marriage/Death records (476 records), then Death, Burial, Cemetery & Obituaries which brought the number down to 171 records. Finally, I selected “North Carolina Death Certificates 1909-1976,” which yielded 36 records. For this study, I was only interested in white people born before 1880. Ancestry allows you to select for Race, so I decided to enter white. That query which yielded 23 records. Luckily, the results provide the birthdate so I can ignore individuals whose births were after 1880. The result was only 7 Records.

Record = Theodora Garret Vinson – 14 Feb 1859–28 Dec 1918.
I do not have Theodora in my tree or research yet. She was widowed and there is nothing on the record indicating who she was married to. I decided to add her to my tree as an unrelated individual. I’m sure that Theodora will show up elsewhere.

Record = Mortha A Vinson – 25 Mar 1829–10 Nov 1913.
This record is for Martha A. Vinson, (nee Smith). My files had her birth, death, and burial information previously.

Record = Thomas L Vinson – 1854-18 Feb 1923
My records had Thomas L. Vinson’s birth, death, and burial information previously.

Record = William Jaseon Vinson – 1860-1 Apr 1937
My looking at the name suggests to me his name was William Gastin Vinson. I will definately need to find his middle name written elsewhere to feel confident regarding his middle name.

 Record = Mrs. Susie Vinson – 18 Aug 1862-23 Oct 1939
The Widow Susie Vinson’s spouse was John Vinson. I have several other John Vinson’s in my records. However, I can’t associate Susie to any of them. As such, I’ve created a new unrelated tree for Susie and John in my database.

Record = Benjamin Hunter Vinson – 20 Feb 1875 – 21 Jul 1966
This record was a treasure trove of information. I learned B. H. Vinson’s name is Benjamin Hunter Vinson. I also learned that his father first name was John; I’ve long had it as J. Robert Vinson. I also learned his mother was Leah Hunter. I also learned the day and month of his birth. For the year, previously, I had his birth year as being between 1873 and 1874. Considering his birthday was in February, that would indicate that earlier census records suggest he was born in 1874, however his death certificate states the birth year of 1875. I’ve decided to split his birth into two separate facts, one in 1874 (based upon census records) and one in 1875 based on his death certificate.

Record = Emmitt Vinson – 19 Feb 1877- 20 May 1972
This record provided more previously unknown information. I learned Emmitt’s birth, death, and burial dates and locations. I also learned his mother’s maiden name, Leah Nicholson Hunter.

Conclusion

Although several of the records I found regarding the Vinson’s in the Death Certificate records didn’t shine any new information onto my tree, however, several other documents helped greatly. Ancestry has many more death records that can be searched; however, they appear to be indexes and not actual documents, so I’ll continue on with my study. Next time, I will look at the marriage records for the Vinson family of Halifax County, North Carolina.


Surname Study – Vinson – Halifax County, NC – Part 4

Surname Saturday
Howell/Vinson
By Don Taylor

During Part 3 of this study, I examined the Vinson family of Halifax County, North Carolina during the 1850 Census. This week I step back to the 1840 Census.

1840 Census

The 1840 Census contained the name of the head of the household, the location of the home in 1840, and the number of individuals in the household in various age groups. A search for Vinson in Halifax County, North Carolina yielded four Vinson families. Based upon my research of the 1850 through 1880 Censuses, I would expect to find the following individuals

  • A household that includes Elizabeth Vinson (age 55) and would including 23-year-old John and 15-year-old Nancy.
  • A household that included Robert Vinson (age between 10 and 16).
  • A household that included Littleberry Vinson (age 24 or 25).

Burket Vinson

The Burket Vinson family consists of three males and two females. It is the only family that fits the Elizabeth Vinson family line.

  • 1 Male 60 to 69         Burkett Vinson
  • 1 Male 20 to 29         John Vinson (Age 23)
  • 1 Male 15 to 19         <unknown>
  • 1 Female 50 to 59     Elizabeth Vinson (age 55)
  • 1 Female 15 thru 19 Nancy Vinson (age 15)

It is possible that Robert is that male from 15 to 19.

Peter Vinson

The Peter Vinson family consists of three males and two females.

  • 1 Male 40 to 49         Assumed to be Peter Vinson
  • 1 Male 10 to 14         Possibly Robert, age 10 to 16.
  • 1 Male 5 to 9              unk
  • 1 Female 30 to 39     Presumed to be Peter Vinson’s wife.
  • 1 Female 5 to 9          unk

Laban Vinson

The Laban Vinson family consists of three males and four females

  • 1 Male 70 to 79         Assumed to be Laban Vinson
  • 1 Male 15 to 19         Possibly Robert, age 10 to 16.
  • 1 Male 5 to 9
  • 2 Females 50 to 59    1 is presumed to be Laban’s wife.
  • 1 Female 15 to 19
  • 1 Female 10 to 14

It is possible that Robert Vinson, Age 10 to 16, is the male shown above.

Robert Vinson

The Robert Vinson family consists of two males and two females.

  • 1 Male 50 to 59         Assumed to be Robert Vinson
  • 1 Male 20 to 29         Possibly 23 year old John
  • 1 Female 50 to 59     Possibly 55 year-old Elizabeth
  • 1 Female 15 to 19.    Possibly 15 year old Nancy

It is also possible that Littleberry, age 24 or 25 is the Male 20 to 29 identified in the Census.

Conclusion

None of the 1850 Census households can be traced with certainty as being one of the 1840 Census households. This is disappointing but not unexpected. With that decision, I feel confident I must find some other kinds of documents to determine the family units of the Vinson families of Halifax County, North Carolina. The 55-year-old Elizabeth could be the wife of Burkett or Robert.

I believe I have exhausted the Census records for now, so I must continue my study using alternate (non Census) records. The ultimate purpose of the census work for this study was to know enough about the families involved so that Birth, Marriage, and Death Records will have a context and make sense.

Vinson Families in Halifax County 1850 thru 1880.

  • Elizabeth Vinson       (b. 1784-1785)
  • John Vinson                (b. 1816-1817)
  • + Lenora [Vinson]   (b. 1817-1818)
    • Virginia Vinson          (b. 1844-1846)
    • Elizabeth Vinson       (b. 1846-1847)
    • Susan Vinson             (b. 1847-1849)
  • + Ellenor [Vinson]    (b. 1824-1825)
    • James W. Vinson        (b. 1851-1852)
    • Benjamin I. Vinson    (b. 1854-1855)
    • Joseph Burkhead Vinson       (b. 1857-1858)
    • Ellen B. Vinson           (B. 1860-1861)
  • Nancy Vinson                       (b. 1824-1825)

 

  •  Robert Vinson (b. 1824-1830)
  • + Martha, [Vinson] (b. 1828-1829)
    • John H. Vinson           (b. 1850-1851)
    • Thomas L Vinson       (b. 1853-1854)
    • Albert L. Vinson         (b. 1855-1856)
    • Turner Vinson           (b. 1858-1859)
    • Laura E “Lizzie” Vinson (b. 1865-1866)

 

  • Littleberry Vinson      (b. 1815-1816)
  • + Fannie [Vinson]     (b. 1820-1821)
    • Laura Vinson (b. 1845-1846)
    • J. Robert Vinson (b. 1847-1848)
    • + L. N. Vinson (b. 1853-1854)
      • C.R. Vinson, (b. 1871-1872)
      • Fannie Vinson, (b. 1872-1873)
      • B. H. Vinson, (b. 1873-1874)
      • Emmett Vinson, (b. 1876-1877)
  • + Elizabeth [Vinson]   (b. 1815-1816)
    • Littleberry Vinson (b. 1857-1858)
    • William Vinson (b. 1859)

 

 

 

 

 

Surname Study – Vinson – Halifax County, NC – Part 2

Surname Saturday
Howell/Vinson
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.During Part 1 of this study, I followed the Vinson family through the 1880 and 1870 Census records. In doing so, I established four Vinson family units in Halifax County during the 1880 Census.

1870-1880 Family Units

Looking at the 1870 and 1880 Censuses together I previously identified the following families:

Widow Elizabeth Vinson (b. 1815-1817)

  • Littleburg Vinson (b. 1857-1858) Married J. D. Unknown (b. 1858-1859)
    • Unnamed Vinson girl (b. 1879 – d. April 1880)
  • William G. Vinson (b. 1858-1959)

J. Robert Vinson (b. 1847-1848) – Wife, L. N. Vinson (b. 1853-1854)

  • R. Vinson, (b. 1871-1872)
  • Fannie Vinson, (b. 1872-1873)
  • H. Vinson, (b. 1873-1874)
  • Emmett Vinson, (b. 1876-1877)

Robert Vinson (b. 1824-1825) – Wife, Martha, (b. 1828-1829)

  • John H. Vinson (b. 1850-1851)
  • Thomas L, (b. 1853-1854)
  • Albert L. Age 14 (b. 1855-1856)
  • Laura E “Lizzie” Vinson (b. 1865-1866)

Littlebury Geo Vinson (b. 1815-1816)

1860 Census

The 1860 Census again shows the names of individuals in a household; however, it does not provide relationships.  The following individuals were identified, the relationships are either guessed by me or come from subsequent Census records:

Littleberry Vinson

Halifax County, North Carolina.

There were three Vinson families during the 1860 Census.  The Elizabeth Vinson of the 1870 Census is with Littleberry Vinson during the 1860 Census. This seemed extremely strange to me.  Upon further investigation, it appears that the Littlebury and Elizabeth Vinson were enumerated on two separate pages during the 1870 Census and were not noted as such.  That suggests that Littlebury of the 1870 Census was still with his wife and children and Elizabeth was not widowed until after 1860. With that in mind I have consolidated the Littleberry (b. 1815-1816) entries.  The 1860 Census adds two more children to the Littleberry and Elizabeth Vinson family.

A second connection is also apparent from the 1860 Census.  Robert Vinson, age 12 appears to be the same person as J. Robert Vinson of the 1870 Census.

Littleberry Vinson      44        Connected
+ Elizabeth Vinson        44

  •             Laura Vinson             14        New
  •             Robert Vinson             12        Connected
  •             Littleberry Vinson      2
  •             William Vinson          11/12

Robert Vinson


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The Robert Vinson Family adds Turner Vinson as a youth.  It appears that Turner may have died before 1870. Another interesting entry for the family is that a Susan Wilson is living with them. Her age is 22 and she is a seamstress.  Her relationship is unknown. She might be old enough to be a sister of Robert. Hopefully, the 1850 Census will shed light on her place in the family. The Robert Vinson family unit is:

Robert Vinson (b. 1824-1825)
+ Martha, (b. 1828-1829)

  • John H. Vinson     (b. 1850-1851)
  • Thomas L,             (b. 1853-1854)
  • Albert L. Vinson   (b. 1855-1856)
  • Turner Vinson   (b. 1858-1859) – New
  • Laura E “Lizzie” Vinson (b. 1865-1866)

John Vinson

This family group is the really important group for my research. John Vinson is my wife’s 2nd great-grandfather. None of the individuals in this 1860 Census appear in the 1870 or 1880 Census records for the Vinson surname in Halifax County, North Carolina.  The 1860 Census indicates the following:

John Vinson                43
+ Ellenior Vinson          35

  • Virginia Vinson          14
  • Elizabeth Vinson       13
  • Susan Vinson             12
  • James Vinson             8
  • Benja Vinson              5
  • Barkhead Vinson       2

Elizabeth Vinson       75

This family unit appears to be a husband, wife, six children, and John’s mother. The question is where are they in the 1870 and 1880 Censuses?

The family unit is “Vincent” in the 1870 Census. The 1870 Census shows the head of the household is Leanora living with five children,

  • Elizabeth, Age 23
  • James W., Age 17
  • Benjamin I, Age 14
  • Joseph B., Age 12
  • Ellen B., Age 9.

With that in mind, the new John Vinson/Vincent family consists of

John Vinson              (b. 1816-1817)
+ Ellenior/Lenora [Vinson]  (b. 1824-1825)

  •             Virginia Vinson       (b. 1845-1846)
  •             Elizabeth Vinson     (b. 1846-1847)
  •             Susan Vinson           (b. 1847-1848)
  •             James W. Vinson     (b. 1851-1852)
  •             Benjamin I. Vinson (b. 1854-1855)
  •             Joseph Barkhead Vinson   (b. 1857-1858)
  •            Ellen B. Vinson        (B. 1860-1861) (from 1870 Census

(It is also likely that John is the son of Elizabeth [Vinson]. I will pencil that in for now.)

Elizabeth Vinson     (b. 1784-1785)

Conclusion

I was able to reduce the Vinson Family lines in Halifax County from four to three in the 1860 Census.  My wife’s Elizabeth/John/Susan Vinson line (bolded below), A Robert Vinson line. Robert is the correct age to potentially be a brother to John. Thirdly, a Littleberry Vinson line which is also potentially a brother to John.  Next time, I’ll roll the 1850 Census into the study.

Vinson Families in Halifax County 1860 thru 1880.

Elizabeth Vinson     (b. 1784-1785)

  • John Vinson              (b. 1816-1817)
    + Ellenior/Lenora [Vinson]  (b. 1824-1825)

    • Virginia Vinson          (b. 1845-1846)
    • Elizabeth Vinson       (b. 1846-1847)
    • Susan Vinson           (b. 1847-1848)
    • James W. Vinson        (b. 1851-1852)
    • Benjamin I. Vinson    (b. 1854-1855)
    • Joseph Barkhead Vinson       (b. 1857-1858)
    • Ellen B. Vinson           (B. 1860-1861)

 

  •  Robert Vinson (b. 1824-1825)
    +Martha, [Vinson] (b. 1828-1829)

    • John H. Vinson           (b. 1850-1851)
    • Thomas L Vinson       (b. 1853-1854)
    • Albert L. Vinson         (b. 1855-1856)
    • Turner Vinson           (b. 1858-1859)
    • Laura E “Lizzie” Vinson (b. 1865-1866)

 

  • Littleberry Vinson      (b. 1815-1816)
    + Elizabeth [Vinson]   (b. 1815-1816)
  • Laura Vinson (b. 1845-1846)
  • J. Robert Vinson (b. 1847-1848)
    + L. N. Vinson (b. 1853-1854)

    • C.R. Vinson, (b. 1871-1872)
    • Fannie Vinson, (b. 1872-1873)
    • B. H. Vinson, (b. 1873-1874)
    • Emmett Vinson, (b. 1876-1877)
  • Littleberry Vinson (b. 1857-1858)
  • William Vinson (b. 1859)


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Amanuensis the Easy Way

Amanuensis Monday
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.A few years ago, I wrote a post about my wife’s 4th great-grandfather, Lewis Bryan (1755-1830) and that he had purchased his land from Robert Bryan. That post received several comments. One included a clue from Gloria Knight who said, “I have found where a “Patent” was issued on 10 Dec 1760 to a Robert Bryan. Source: Halifax County N.C. Land Grants – Secretary of State – Land Grants Record Books 1693-1960. Grant # was 82; File # 14. 520 acres on Conotoe Creek.”

I had meant to find that reference and incorporate it into my information regarding Robert Bryan. I just hadn’t gotten around to it. Her comment/clue reminded me of three significant resources matters.

Networking

So many of us want to be self-sufficient we tend to forget many researchers have been there before and we can and should build upon their work. For example, Gloria’s clue provided enough information that I could easily, and quickly build upon her work. Not just accept what she said but use it as a hint as a beginning point. I know that professional genealogists want every source to be quoted in a fashion identified in Evidence Explained. Sure, that is THE standard for citing sources.  However, rather than getting all twisted around the citation standards, I am most interested in having enough information about the source that I can find it for myself. In this case, a Google search for Gloria’s clue, “Halifax County N.C. Land Grants ” brought me immediately to North Carolina Land Grant Images and Data. Seeing Search Query on the page, I searched for Name: “Bryan” and County: Halifax. Six entries were returned, one the 520 Acres of Robert Bryan.  The page also had a link to an image in Book 14, Pages 114-115. There it was, an image of the original patent book. The key to me is Gloria had provided enough information regarding her source that I was able to find the source in less than a minute myself. To me that is the ultimate reason for citations and building upon or confirming her research is the ultimate purpose of networking.

Wikipedia

I knew from previous research with this family line that Martin County was previously Halifax County.  There are many sites to learn that kind of information. However, I have found that Wikipedia is possibly the best and easiest way to confirm such information. On Wikipedia, just search <NAME> County, <STATE> and you get the appropriate wiki page.  In this case. I entered “Martin County, North Carolina” In the History section of the page returned said,

The county was formed in 1774 from the southeastern part of Halifax County and the western part of Tyrrell County.

I could have just as easily gone to the Halifax County, North Carolina page and learned that,

In 1774 the southeastern part of Halifax County was combined with part of Tyrrell County to form Martin County.

I think every county page on Wikipedia has a “History” section. I find that the County entries in Wikipedia to be a great asset. Besides quick history, there is a Communities section which shows the cities, towns, unincorporated communities, and townships within the county. Great information to have handy when reviewing Census and other records. I can be a real help in understanding that an incorporated community in your genealogy is near town that may have been their post office which may have been in a township.  So, when you see the names change in different documents, you can understand that your ancestors may have been in the same place even though multiple names were used.

Google

Finally, I wanted to transcribe the patent information from the document. I’ll admit, I don’t like transcribing 18th century handwriting very much. I mean, I can do it, I just don’t like doing it. In this case, I could easily read the document started out “Robert Bryan Five hundred and twenty acres.” A Google search of those exact words led to one result. A quick review of the result showed it was a transcript of the document I wanted to transcribe. Dated the 10th day of December 1760.  Then, rather than transcribe the original text, all I needed to do is to read the transcription and see if I agreed with the transcription.  Much faster – much easier. Then, I added the transcript to my source documents identifying it:

Transcription by <Unknown>  found on site, BMGEN.COM
“Genealogy data relating to the Brian and Mitchell families.”

So, I have my copy of the original image, and I have my source for that image documented. I also have a transcription of the information, confirmed and reviewed by me. I am good with that and can move on to the next project.

Transcription

Transcription by <Unknown> found on site, BMGEN.COM

ROBERT BRYAN five hundred and twenty acres of land in Halifax County.

Beginning at a Pine, his corner on Conneto Swamp running thence up said swamp to a Maple at the mouth of Wild Cat Branch; then up said branch to a Poplar in said branch; then W 62 poles to a Red Oak; then S 160 poles to a Pine; then W 40 poles to two Sweet Gums in a branch; then S 280 poles to a Pine; then W 88 poles to a pine in MOSES HORN’s line; then along his line S 23 E 174 poles to a White Oak, his corner on Conneto Creek; then down said creek to a Pine, JOHN HORN’s corner on said creek; then along his line N 17 E 142 poles to a Pine, his corner in said BRYAN’s line; then along his line W 16 poles to a Pine, his corner; then along his line N 270 poles to a Pine, his corner on a branch; then down the branch, his line, to the first station.

Dated 10th day of December, 1760

Conclusion

  1. Pay attention to hints from anywhere – check them out for yourself.
  2. The North Carolina Land Grant site is an awesome resource. Be sure to include it in your resources.
  3. Don’t forget Wikipedia County searches can be helpful.
  4. Check Google (or Bing or Yahoo) to see if the words you want transcribed  have already been transcribed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vinson/Vincent line of Halifax, NN

Researching the Vinson/Vincent line of Halifax, North Carolina

Howell-Darling-2017 Research
Howell/Vinson/Vincent Line
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.

Getting to know ancestors that lived before 1850 is always difficult. The census records before 1880 do not include relationships and census records before 1850 only include the name of the head of the household. Because of that, it is really difficult to know all the names and to learn all the relationships. It isn’t a wall, but certainly researching families before 1850 can feel like a closed road.  For me, my wife’s third great-grandfather, Burkett Vinson is such a person.  He shows up once in the 1840 Census with a small household of five individuals. After a frustrating time trying to find more about him, I decided to do a name/location study regarding his surname in his location. Such a study can help associate people into relationships and can help reduce errors.

Using Family Search, I searched the 1850 Census for surname Vinson in Halifax, North Carolina. The system returned six results from two families. Both were new to my research:

  • Littleberry Vinson, Age 34, his apparent wife, an apparent daughter, Laura, and an apparent son Robert.[i]
  • Robert Vinson, Age 30, and his apparent wife, Martha.[ii]

Next, I enter the information into my software, (I currently use Family Tree Maker 3.1.) documenting my sources very carefully.

Besides the obvious family units I’ve discovered, it was also interesting to learn many of the little nuances of the individual’s lives. For example, Littleberry Vinson distinguished himself in testing at Brinkleyville Academy in 1831[iii]. He became a lawyer. Then, in 1840, he toasted vice presidential candidate John Tyler for devotion to Republican principals and support of the Constitution. That article’s use of “Esqr.” confirms that Littleberry was a lawyer. His toast suggests his political affiliation indicating that Littleberry Vinson was likely a Whig.[iv] (Harrison and Tyler ran on a Whig party ticket. Also, today’s Republican Party wasn’t established until 1854.)

Unfortunately, my experience researching this family is that Vincent and Vinson were used interchangeably depending upon the ear of the person hearing the name. Sadly, a search for “Vincent” yielded another 13 results and three new previously unknown households.

  • John Vincent, Age 32, with his apparent wife, Leonora, and three daughters, Virginia, Elizabeth, and Susan. Also in the household is a 30-year-ood Eliza Beasley. (These were my wife’s ancestor family. John is my wife’s 2nd great-grandfather and Susan is her great-grandmother.) [v]
  • Elizabeth Vincent, Age 64 with a 25-year-old Nancy Vincent in the household.  (This would be the wife and daughter of the deceased Burkett Vinson.)[vi]

New Households:

  • Michael Vincent, age 27, his apparent wife and an apparent son, Walter.[vii]
  • James Vincent, Age 19 & John Vincent, Age 16[viii]
  • Phil Vincent in the household of James Snow.[ix]

Of course, all the “apparent” relationships above are guesses. I’ll add that, because of the ages, I’ll guess that James and John (ages 19 & 16) were brothers.

Next, I need to expand upon these Vincent families and understand how they fit into the larger picture.


Endnotes

[i] 1850 Census (FS), 1850 Census – Littleberry Vinson – Halifax, North Carolina. See: 1850 Census – Lettleberry Vinson – Halifax, North Carolina.pdf. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M4BC-343.

[ii] 1850 Census (FS), 1850 Census – Robert Vinson – Halifax, North Carolina. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M4BC-XH3.

[iii] Roanoke Advocate (Halifax, NC) · 1831-11-24 · Page 2 – Various Vinsons achieve honors (Newspapers.com)

[iv] Roanoke Advocate and States Rights Banner  ((Halifax, NC), ), Newspapers.Com, 1840-07-29 · Page 4 – Volunteer Toasts – Littleberry Vinson

[v] 1850 Census (FS), 1850 Census – John Vincent – Halifax, North Carolina. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M4BC-QTG.

[vi] 1850 Census (FS), 1850 Census – Elizabeth Vincent – Halifax, North Carolina. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M4BC-QTB.

[vii] 1850 Census (FS), 1850 Census – Michael Vincent – Halifax, North Carolina. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M4BH-BDY.

[viii] 1850 Census (FS), 1850 Census – James Vincent – Halifax, North Carolina. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M4BC-QZ7.

[ix] 1850 Census (FS), 1850 Census – Phil Vincent – Halifax, North Carolina. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M4BC-NTY.