Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Caswell County Board of Commissioners

Board of Commissioners
Caswell County, North Carolina

The Milton Chronicle, 14 October 1869
In 2018 we commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Caswell County Board of Commissioners. Pursuant to the North Carolina Constitution of 1868 the executive authority of North Carolina's counties was shifted from the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions to the newly created board of commissioners. Initially, the commissioners were appointed, but eventually commissioners were elected.

Here we hope to list all the Commissioners who served Caswell County and eventually to publish a short biography of each.

Adams, William W. (c.1813-aft.1868)
Aldridge, Bobby Franklin (1936-
Aldridge, George Irvin (1934-
Aldridge, William Preston (1883-1941)
Allen, James W. (1834-

Allison, Edgar Archibald (1879-1955)
Allison, Joseph Carrithers (1837-1916)
Andrews, Bruce (not confirmed)
Barnwell, John Shelby (1823-1896)
Battle, Erik Donnell

Battle, Mel Ott (1945-
Blackwell, Faiger Megra (1955-
Blackwell, James Yancey (Jr.) (1928-
Blackwell, Rev. John Henry (1949-2016)
Boswell, Antiochus (1812-1885)

Brandon, Henry Field (1831-1900)
Burton, John Drewry (1877-1936)
Bowe, William B. (1808-1880)
Briggs, William Robert (1910-1974)
Burton, John Richard (1845-1921)

Butler Eugene Stokes (1899-1973)
Carey, Wilson (1831-1905)
Carter, George Rosser (1910-1996)
Carter, Andrew Sterling (1994-
Carter, Edward Willis (1866-1951)

Carter, William (Bill) Edward (1951-
Chandler, George Allen (1854-1905)
Cook, William Preston (1888-1970)
Corbett, John Wesley (1837-1901)
Covington, Edward Green (1827-1916)

Covington, Samuel Thomas(1839-1912)
Covington, William Green(1849-1924)
Dabbs, Arthur Pinnix(1891-1961)
Farrish, Thomas J. [possibly Thomas Williamson Farrish]
Foster, John David Blackwell (1935-

Gatewood, Maud Florance (1934-2004)
Gatewood, William Henry (1821-1900)
Graves, Barzillai Shuford (1854-1942)
Graves, Calvin (1804-1877)
Griffith, Jesse C. (c.1821-

Gwynn, Lyttleton Ayers (1853-1936)
Hall, Nathaniel (Nate) (c.1948-
Hamlett, Larry Gene (1956-
Hamlett, Linwood (Sam) Harold (1919-2011)
Harrison, Samuel Satterwhite (1818-1885)

Harvey, John S.
Hatchett, Thomas Henry (Jr.) (1864-1938)
Herndon, George
Herndon, John Edward
Hodges, James M.

Hodnett, Philip
Hooper, Emery McCormick
Hooper, Jack William
Howard, Cary Allen (Jr.)
Jeffries, Jeremiah

Jones, Richard H.
Jones, Thaddeus Cornelius
Jones, Yancey (1868-1880)
King, Cary Howard
Lea, Thomas Lewis (Jr.)

Leath, Daniel Otis
Lipscomb, John J.
Lucas, Cathy Walker
Mason, William Morris
Massey, Lynn Walker

McVey, Ricky Gordon
Mebane, Giles
Mebane, DeBerniere Yancey
Miles, William Weldon
Moorefield, William Conway (1988-1992; Chairman 1991)

Murphy, Charles Franklin (1964-1976; Chairman 1974-1975)
Myers, George Julian
Newman, Anderson Banks
Newman, Samuel Pinkney
O'Ferrall, James W.

Oliver, George Washington
Oliver, Monroe
Osborne, R. Hinton
Owen, David Jasper
Phelps, Henry J.

Pinnix, Dr. Jackson Graves
Pointer, William Wallace
Richmond, Nathaniel Monford
Roan, Felix (1988)(unconfirmed)
Roan, Dr. Nathaniel Moore (Chairman)

Roan, Robert Liston (not confirmed)
Rogers, Clyde Banks
Rowland, Claude Bennett
Satterfield, Lynn Banks (Chairman)
Satterfield, Gordon Graham

Slade, John W.
Smith, Grant
Smith, Jerry
Smith, John Robert
Somers, Peter Mack

Steed, Thomas Edward
Stephens, Dr. William G.
Swann, Arthur Delbert
Taylor, William Nathaniel
Thomas, Walter Lea

Travis, Kenneth Dwight (Chairman)
Vernon, Clay Hester (III)
Walker, David Preston
Walker, George Weldon (Jr.)
Walker, Robert L.

Walters, Charles Sidney
Walters, John F.
Ward, George William (Jr.)
Warren, John Lewis
Warren, Patricia Bynum

Watlington, Oscar Bryant (Jr.)
Watlington, Harvey Wilson
Watlington, John Kinder
White, James Worsham
Wiley, Robert Victor (1911-2005; elected 1973 (served for eight years)

Williams, George T.
Williams, James Monroe
Williams, William Kinch
Williamson, Norris Kent (replaced Erik Battle)
Womack, Thomas Pancoast (1861-1916)

Woods, John (Jack) Burton
Worsham, Thomas Dandridge
Wrenn, Richard David
Yarbrough, John B.

Bowe, W. B.
Jones, Yancey
Mason, Morris
Mebane, Giles
Roan, Dr. N. M. (Chairman)

1886-1888 (possibly longer)
Allen, J. W.
Corbett, J. W.
Gatewood, W. H.
Howard, C. A.
Pinnix, Dr. J. G.
Note: Felix Roan served as Clerk of the Board of Commissioners

Caswell County Board of Commissioners (July 1888)

Dr. Pinnix, Chairman [Dr. Jackson Graves Pinnix]
J. W. Allen [James W. Allen]
W. H. Gatewood [William Henry Gatewood]
C. A. Howard [Cary Allen Howard, Jr.]
J. W. Corbitt [John Wesley Corbett]

The above were described as being at a county commissioners session held Monday and Tuesday, July 2nd and 3rd, 1888.

Source: The Caswell News (Yanceyville, North Carolina), 11 July 1888, Wednesday, Page 3.

Burton, J. R. (Hightowers)
Lea, Capt. T. L. (Hamer)
Mills, W. W. (Stoney Creek)
Walters, J. F. (Blanch)
Worsham, T. D. (Locust Hill)

Clerk to the Board

Roan, Felix
Seamster, Paula
Smith, Wanda P.

Last Revised: 29 December 2019


Adams, William W. (c.1813-aft.1868)

It appears that a William W. Adams was born c.1813 in Caswell County, North Carolina. If he served as a member of the Caswell County Board of Commissioners, he lived until at least 1868. In 1842, he married Mary (Polly) Evans Womack, widow of John G. Womack, who died 1830. The couple had at least one child, Hannibal A. Adams (1843-1917), who may have been postmaster at Fitch, Caswell County, North Carolina.

1850 United States Federal Census
Name: William W Adams
Age: 37
Birth Year: abt 1813
Birthplace: North Carolina
Home in 1850: Caswell, North Carolina, USA
Gender: Male
Family Number: 345
Household Members:
Name Age
William W Adams 37
Mary P Adams 46
Hanibal Adams 7
Louisa Jackson 9

Aldridge, Bobby Franklin (1936- )

North Carolina Birth Index, 1800-2000
Name: Bobbie Franklin Aldridge
Date of Birth: 27 Sep 1936
Gender: Male
Race: White
Birth County: Caswell
Parent1 Name: Carlton Huist Aldridge
Parent2 Name: Martha Edna Frances Rudd Aldridge

Butler, Eugene Stokes (1899-1973)

Reidsville -- Eugene Stokes Butler, 73, of Rt. 1, Reidsville [physically in Caswell County], died unexpectedly this morning at 2:45 o'clock in a Reidsville hospital following several years of declining health.

A native of Caswell County, he was the son of the late Mack Neal and Martha Francis Butler, and the husband of the late Florence Saunders Butler who died in 1965. He was a prominent farmer and civic leader of the Camp Springs Community in Caswell County, former chairman of the Caswell County Board of Commissioners and former member of the Caswell County Board of Education. He was a member of Camp Springs United Methodist Church, and a member of the Caswell Brotherhood Masonic Lodge No. 11 A.F. & A.M.

Survivors include two sons, Connie Mach (Tony) Butler of the home, Melvin C. Butler of Rt. 1, Reidsville; nine daughters, Mrs. Wilbert Paschall and Mrs. Frances B. Page, both of Rt. 1, Reidsville, Mrs. Freeman Somers Sr., and Mrs Robert Swift, both of Rt. 2, Elon College, Mrs Boyd Parker of Asheboro, Mrs. Wilbert Aldridge of Rt. 3, Burlington, Mrs. William Compton of Burlington, and Mrs. Jerry Rudd of Miami, Fla.; 25 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

Final rites will be held Saturday afternoon at 3 o'clock at Camp Springs United Methodist Church. The Rev. Allen C. Ridenour, pastor, will officiate. Masonic graveside rites will be held at the church cemetery by Caswell Brotherhood Lodge No. 11 A.F. & A.M. following the service.

The body will remain at Strickland Funeral Home in Burlington until taken to the church 30 minutes prior to the service. Visitation will begin Friday morning at 10 o'clock. The family will be at the funeral home Friday night from 7 to 9 o'clock.

The Daily Times-News (Burlington, North Carolina), 3 May 1973, Thursday, Page 12.

Note that two children died very young, and are not mentioned in the obituary: Eugene M. Butler (1920-1920); and Eugene Stokes Butler, Jr. (1933-1934).

1. Elijah Butler m. Linsey Unknown
2. John Thomas Butler m. Martha Carolina Parker
3. Mack Neal Butler m. Martha Susan Francis
4. Eugene Stokes Butler m. Florence Iona Saunders

After the Civil War, the North Carolina Constitution of 1868 gave citizens more input into electing their local leaders. Citizens were given the power to elect the sheriff, coroner, register of deeds, clerk of court, surveyor and treasurer, as well as the newly created board of commissioners. Commissioners replaced the appointed justices of the peace and were given full financial responsibility for the county, which included adopting the budget and setting the property tax rate. Today, citizens still elect the commissioners, sheriff, register of deeds and clerk of court, although the court system is now a function of state government. Counties remain an arm of state government and carry out the many services that are mandated by the state and federal governments.

Pursuant to the North Carolina Constitution of 1868 the executive authority of North Carolina's counties was shifted from the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions to the newly created board of commissioners. Initially, the commissioners were appointed, but eventually commissioners were elected.

Through its board of commissioners, the county exercises its powers and discharges its responsibilities. North Carolina General Statute 153A-12 states that "except as otherwise directed by law, each power, right, duty, function, privilege and immunity of the corporation [i.e., the county] shall be exercised by the board of commissioners."

All county commissioners are elected at the same time as members of the General Assembly and other state officers, in elections held in the month of November in even-numbered years. Because boards have staggered four-year terms and two-year terms, about half of the state's county commissioners are elected at each general election. Newly elected commissioners take office on the first Monday in December following their election. There is no requirement that a person be nominated as the candidate of a political party in order to run for the office of county commissioner.

In all but a few counties, the chairman of the board of commissioners is selected by the board itself. The board also choose a vice-chairman to act in the absence or disability of the chairman. In most counties, the chairman serves as long as he or she is reelected and retains the confidence of his or her colleagues. In others, the member who receives the most votes during the elction is designated the chairman. In still others, the chairmanship rotates among the members.

The chairman of the board presides at all meetings. By law, this official has the right and the duty to vote on all questions before the board unless excused by a standing rule of the board or by consent of the other board members. The chair is generally recognized by law as the chief executive officer of the county. He or she can call special meetings of the board, and can also declare states of emergency under the state laws governing riots and civil disorders.

The clerk of the board of commissioners keeps the minute and ordinance books, and has a wide variety of miscellaneous duties directly related to official actions of the board. Most boards designate a county official or employee to act as clerk to the board. The clerk is appointed directly by the board and serves as its pleasure.

The board of commissioners also appoint a county attorney, who serves as the board's legal adviser. The exact nature of the county attorney's duties varies from county to county, as does the amount and method of her or his compensation. A few counties have established a full-time position of county attorney, and in those counties the county attorney may provide legal services to nearly all county agencies (except the board of education, which always employs its own attorney). The county attorney is not appointed to a definite term, but rather serves at the pleasure of the board.

The board is required by law to hold at least one meeting each month, on any day of the month and at any public place within the county. Special board meetings may be called by the chairman or by a majority of the other board members. A special meeting must be called by written notice stating time, place, and subjects to be considered. Unless all members attend or sign a written waiver, only business related to the subjects stated in the notice may be transacted at a special meeting.

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