Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Milton, North Carolina, Historic District

Milton Historic District

By 1857 Milton had five tobacco factories. No fewer, than thirteen tobacco warehouses, prize houses where the raw tobacco was packed into hogsheads, and tobacco plug and smoking factories appear on the 1893 Sanborn Insurance Map. By 1925 not one remained in business and most of the buildings had disappeared. Claude Allen's Plug Tobacco Factory on the east side of Bridge-Warehouse Street is the only existing factory building. The factory is a late nineteenth century vernacular Victorian one-story frame structure now used as a barn. Across the gable-end facade is a loading dock with a shed roof, and along the south side of the building is a lean-to storage shed. The only exterior ornament is the small, decorative louvered ventilator window in the upper facade. The interior is a large, unpartitioned space with machinery, work tables, plug molds and packing crates scattered about. The factory office, a miniature version of the factory, stands in the side yard.

Source: National Register of Historic Places Inventory--Nomination Form, Milton Historic District, 27 August 1973.

Most of the large planters in the area continued throughout the nineteenth century to occupy their plantation houses on rich holdings along the Dan River and Country Line and Hyco Creeks while they speculated on Milton property. Milton functioned primarily as a market for their raw products, and the early fabric of the town is predominantly commercial, industrial, and small-scale domestic. The dominant Milton house-type of the antebellum period is the modest raised cottage, consisting of a brick story with an upper frame story containing the main entrance. Four examples of this type remain, all located on the east side of Bridge-Warehouse Street--the Wooding Place, the Oliver House, the Gordon House, and the house immediately north of the Baptist Church, which perhaps was built as the parsonage. These dwellings, which appear to date between 1840 and 1860, contrast with the more pretentious Main Street residences, and probably represent the commercial class. John Wooding, believed to be the builder of the Wooding Place, operated the town brickyard, while Field Gordon, probable builder of the Gordon House, owned a saloon in Milton. Two of the raised cottages have hip roofs; two have gable ones. The architectural trim is simple, with large windows, plain eaves and Victorian porches of varying designs, several supported on masonry piers. The interiors exhibit center-hall plans and have plastered walls, simple trim, and typical large Classical Revival mantels.

The present business district of Milton consists of a block of seven brick Victorian row stores built in the 1880s which form one of the best preserved late nineteenth century commercial districts in North Carolina. The two stores on the western end are one-story and the five easternmost buildings form a cohesive group, each two stories high, with segmental-arched windows at the upper level. Each storefront, containing a central entrance with flanking display windows and a side entrance to the upper story, is distinguished by a different combination of playful Victorian wooden ornament consisting of paneled, boxed, and chamfered pilasters, diagonally sheathed dados, and bracketted cornices. Each upper cornice is accentuated by a different brick corbel course design. Most of the stores have shed facade porches supported on plain bracketted posts which form a nearly continuous pedestrian covered walkway. The easternmost building served as the movie house, while the other stores contain small retail establishments.

Source: National Register of Historic Places Inventory--Nomination Form, Milton Historic District, 27 August 1973.

The Baptist Meeting House, which sits on a terraced site on Warehouse Street, is a two-story brick building with a pedimented facade. The verticality of the block is accentuated by the fragility of the fretwork lintel ornament of the double facade entrances and the windows, reflecting Asher Benjamin's stylized classical patterns. The interior, essentially unchanged, features a baptismal niche enframed by a handsome wooden classical proscenium arch and a rear wooden balcony supported on Doric posts. The pulpit and pews resemble in design and plasticity the idiom of Tom Day and quite possibly were executed by him. In the finest community spirit, the church was erected by the citizens of Milton, who were called to the "church raising" by a notice in the Milton Gazette and Roanoke Advertiser, dated January, 1828:

"It is requested that those who hold subscriptions for building a Baptist Meeting House in Milton will report to the Commissioners in this place the amount subscribed on or before the first Thursday in March next at which time and place all those who may wish to encourage and aid in the said building are requested to attend, especially those who are to furnish labour and materials."(Milton Gazette and Roanoke Advertiser, Vol. VL, No. 44, Feb. 28, 1828.

Source: National Register of Historic Places Inventory--Nomination Form, Milton Historic District, 27 August 1973.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Joseph Malcolm Watlington (1906-1993)

Joseph Malcolm Watlington (1906-1993)

Yanceyville - Joseph Malcolm Watlington, 87, of Route 1, Box 464, died May 10, 1993, at Annie Penn Memorial Hospital, Reidsville. Graveside service will be at 2 p.m. today at Prospect United Methodist Church, where he was a member. A native of Halifax County, Va., he was a retired contractor and vocational teacher, and a member of the Men's Bible Class at his church.

Surviving are wife, Virginia White Watlington; sons, John M. Watlington, James W. Watlington, both of Yanceyville, Reid Watlington of Poquoson, Va.; five grandchildren.

Hooper Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Photograph: 1960 Providence Baptist Church: Reverend Jenkins (left) and Joseph Malcolm Watlington (1906-1993), who built the church. Courtesy Louie Oakley.

Malcolm Watlington's crew building Providence Baptist Church (Providence, Caswell County, NC) in 1959. Courtesy Louie Oakley.
In addition to building larger structures, Malcolm Watlington also was a skilled furniture maker. Here is a hand-punched pie safe he made. Courtesy Jane Lyday Westridge.
"This corner cupboard is of very old walnut and was handmade by Malcom Watlington of Yanceyville, father of Johnny, Jim and Reid Watlington. I explained what I wanted and he built it! Afterwards, he built another for his neice. He made beautiful period furniture. He also made a tall pie safe for me with punched tin in the top doors (he did that, too) and the safe will come apart easily and fold down flat so it could be moved easily in a wagon. He was an artist!"Source: Gail Furgurson Stilwell 12 February 2014 Post to the Caswell County Historical Association Facebook Page.
Jelly safe. Courtesy Bette White McClure.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Named for Dr. Stephen Arnold Malloy, M.D.

People named for Dr. Stephen Arnold Malloy, M.D. (1872-1944) (partial list):

Eliza Malloy Slade
Annie Malloy Smith
Elvin Malloy Gunn (1916-1983)
Jack Malloy Pleasant (1923-1964)
Willie Malloy Kimbro

Willie Malloy Kimbro, Jr.
Hollis Malloy Poteat (1908-1983)
Woodrow Malloy Cook
Roy Malloy Thompson (1938-1980)
Allen Malloy Mise

Rick Malloy Mise
Lilliam Malloy Walker
Eugene Malloy Rudd
Richard Malloy Foster (1922-2008)
Richard Malloy Foster, Jr.

Myrtle Malloy Hammack
Nettie Malloy Shelton
Thomas Malloy Smith
Marvin Malloy Fowlkes
Cephus Malloy Lea

Clifton Malloy Rowland
Clarence Malloy Smith
Clarence Malloy Smith, Jr.
Joseph Malloy Gwynn
Virgie Malloy Allen

Heather Malloy Wilson
George Malloy Harris
George Malloy Shelton
George Malloy Shelton, Jr.
John Malloy Hodges

Malloy S. Guthrie
Eunice Malloy Newton
Robert Malloy Bumpass
Raymond Malloy Poteat
Willie Malloy Everett

Sandy Malloy Corbett
Houston Malloy McFarling
Malloy McKinney
Malloy Lea
Malloy Theodore Harris

Malloy Harris, Jr.
Dewey Malloy Swicegood (1930-2004)
Douglas Malloy Butts
Douglas Malloy Butts, Jr.
Samuel Malloy Mitchell

Frederick Malloy Chandler (1927-2003)
Gordon Malloy Dix
Sandy Malloy Corbett
Sandy Malloy Corbett, Jr.
Roy Malloy Willis

Roy Malloy Willis, Jr.
Minnie Malloy Griffin (1933-
Bessie Malloy Blackwell
Stephen Malloy Lunsford (1905-1992)
Morris Malloy McCann

W. Malloy Durham
Ida Malloy Stanfield
Stephem Malloy Hamlett
Kenneth Malloy Hamlett
James Malloy Chapmon

Rick Malloy Mise
Pauline Malloy Slaughter
Houston Malloy Bigelow
Houston Malloy Bigelow, Jr.
James Malloy Pyrant

Mildred Malloy Willis (1924-1986)
Stephen Edward Shelton (1923-1984)
Jean Malloy Guthrie
Sally Malloy Lea
Thomas Malloy Smith

Mildred Malloy Willis
Ackery Malloy Foster
Virginia Malloy Powell
Danny Malloy Durham
Danny Malloy Durham, Jr.

Curtis Malloy Watson
Curtis Malloy Watson, Jr.
Earl Malloy Reagan
Clyde Malloy Collie
Clyde Malloy Collie, Jr.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Caswell County Sheriff Bobby Edward Poteat (1930-1996)

Sheriff Poteat: Rough Time in Office

Bobby Edward Poteat (1930-1996) joined the Caswell County Sheriff's Office as a deputy in 1957, being hired by Sheriff Lynn Banks Williamson. In early 1966, Poteat resigned his deputy position to run for Caswell County Sheriff against his old boss, Frank Daniel, who succeeded Williamson in office. Poteat supporters cited "problems" in the sheriff's office, including in 1965 the sudden departure from the county of a deputy sheriff and the wounding in the leg of another deputy by a man supposedly his prisoner.

1966 Election Results: Bobby Poteat 2,256; Frank Daniel 1,525. This resounding defeat of Sheriff Daniel was not expected. Pelham, Purley, and Yanceyville carried the day for Bobby Poteat.

 However, Poteat was to have his own "problems" in the sheriff's office, including all his deputies walking out (striking about pay), controversy over which deputies were allowed to return, and being convicted of lying to a federal grand jury (sentenced to two years in prison).

At midnight July 1, 1976, all twelve Caswell County Sheriff Deputies walked off the job after being refused a pay raise by county commissioners.

Many of the striking deputies were allowed to return to their jobs, but not all. Included in those denied reinstatement was James Hurdle (Hurley) Webster, even though hundreds of Caswell County citizens signed a petition in support of his reinstatement.

Poteat was re-elected twice after his initial 1966 victory (1970 and 1974). However, he was defeated in 1978 and by early 1979 was in federal prison.

In 1978, Caswell County Sheriff Bobby Edward Poteat was convicted of lying to a federal grand jury August 15, 1977 when he denied taking payoffs from operators of a house of prostitution in Caswell County near the Virginia state line.

The main prosecution witnesses were Robert Taylor Bell, Harold Dowdy, Herbert Boyd, and Thomas Barker, all former owners or operators of the truck stop involved in prostitution.

Robert Taylor Bell testified that he paid Poteat $250 per week from early 1972 until October 6, 1972, when the FBI raided him and he shut down.

Bell leased the establishment to Harold Dowdy who reopened in March 1973 and testified that he agreed to pay Poteat $150 per week.

Herbert Boyd testified that he operated the place for a short time in 1974 and made one payment of $300 to Poteat.

Thomas Barker testified that he paid Poteat $300 weekly from 1975 to early 1977.

In his closing argument to the jury in the federal criminal trial of Caswell County Sheriff Bobby Edward Poteat, lead defense counsel Robert Blackwell stated: "Are you going to believe the word of prostitutes, pimps and convicted felons and convict this man who has been in law enforcement for 21 years?"

Blackwell's arguments were not successful as the jury took little time to find Poteat guilty. However, US. District Judge Glen Williams imposed a very light sentence on Poteat, including no fine. The judge stated that a fine could impose a hardship on Poteat's family.

Lawyer Blackwell stated that the verdict and sentence would be appealed. That never happened.

Poteat's indictment alleged that he perjured himself before the federal grand jury August 15, 1977, by denying he had received "a diamond ring and other monetary payoffs" from the operators of a prostitution ring at a Caswell County truck stop. The ring and other payoffs, the indictment stated, were given to the sheriff by operators of the 29 Truck Stop "to induce him to allow said operators to continue operations as a house of prostitution."

Caswell County Sheriff Resigns

Caswell County Sheriff Bobby Poteat, who has until January 5, 1979, to report to prison for a two-year term for lying to a federal grand jury, has resigned as Sheriff of Caswell County.

He was immediately replaced by J. E. Smith, Jr., who was scheduled to take office next month. Smith defeated Poteat in last May's Democratic primary.

Poteat stated in his resignation letter: "I will always cherish my years as a peace officer serving the citizens of our fine county during which time it has been my goal to provide competent, efficient and dedicated law enforcement."

Poteat's letter of resignation was presented to a special meeting of the Caswell County Board of Commissioners.

Source: Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, North Carolina), 17 November 1978, Friday, Page 10.

The reporting on the federal conviction of Caswell County Sheriff Bobby Edward Poteat is not complete. For example, not known is why he was convicted of lying to a federal grand jury and not of the underlying offense of taking bribes from a prostitution ring? One can speculate: those who paid the bribes cut a deal with the federal prosecutor: testify against Poteat and we will go lighter on you (including not pushing the bribery counts).

What did Caswell County Sheriff Bobby Poteat do to so outrage citizens of Yanceyville that they took steps to have a separate police department?

By many indications, even though he was elected three times, Bobby Poteat's years in office were a serious train wreck.

In March 1977, the Caswell County Commissioners were in favor, but talked out of, seeking legislation for a referendum to replace the Caswell County Sheriff's Department with a Caswell County Police Force. This was all about Bobby Poteat, who now had taken on the County Commissioners.

During his tenure, Caswell County Sheriff Bobby Poteat was regularly criticized by black-owned wrecker services for not being called by the Sheriff's Department even when there was a wreck only miles from their businesses.

Sheriff Bobby Poteat was from Providence, Caswell County, North Carolina, and a member of the Providence Baptist Church. He served in the Korean War and may have been married twice: Margaret Anne Murphey (1950); and Foy Ann Weadon (1984). At least two children are known. Before becoming a Caswell County Sheriff Deputy he was Dan River Township Constable.

Yanceyville Boy Scouts

Left-to-Right: Wayne Moore, Jim Upchurch, Jim Rice, Danny Carlton, Gordon Satterfield

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Sallie Wiggins Postcard 1909

 Miss May Mebane Donoho
% Mrs. E. C. Mebane
North - Elm Street
Greensboro  N.C.

Cousin Sallie Wiggins congratulations to - dear little May Mebane Donoho & hopes to _____ & know her.

June 10, '09

1. Sallie Wiggins is Sallie Henry Womack Wiggins (1864-1929), first cousin of the child's grandmother (thus being a first cousin twice removed of May Mebane Donoho.

2. May Mebane Donoho (1909-2002) is the daughter of John Tab Donoho (1860-1937) and Nannie Graves Mebane Donoho (1869-1954).

3. Mrs. E. C. Mebane is Emma Caroline Mebane Mebane (1842-1911), grandmother of the newly born May Mebane Donoho.

It may be that Nannie Graves Mebane Donoho went to be with her mother to deliver her daughter, May Mebane Donoho (who apparently never married and lived to be 92).

Friday, January 19, 2018

Justice Chevrolet Company (Yanceyville, North Carolina)

Justice Chevrolet Company (Yanceyville, NC)

Clyde Caviness Cole (1903-1969) came to Yanceyville, North Carolina, May 28, 1928, to open a Chevrolet dealership. The grand opening of Justice Chevrolet was held June 5 and 6, 1928, in the "old Tom Lea" building on the Square. Mr. Cole secured the first Chevrolet franchise ever granted to Caswell County. Whether he was the sole owner is not known, but it is believed that he had one or more investors (possibly T. E. Steed).

Click to See Larger Image

In January 1932, the Tom Lea Building burned, damaging the A. H. Motz Building and threatening the entire east end of the Square. Lost were Lea's Garage (Justice Chevrolet), Richardson's Barber Shop, and Swicegood Funeral Home. Lea apparently leased the building to Justice Chevrolet and began rebuilding immediately. The Caswell Messenger (Yanceyville, NC), January 7, 1932.

Justice Chevrolet Company reopened, having been closed since the fire of January 1932. The Caswell Messenger (Yanceyville, NC), May 11, 1933.

In 1936, Justice Chevrolet occupied a new building constructed by T. E. Steed. Where this new building was located is not known. Nor is it known when the name of the dealership was changed to Cole Chevrolet. The Caswell Messenger (Yanceyville, NC), June 4, 1936.

In 1947 Clyde Cole constructed a new Chevrolet dealership building on Hooper Street in Yanceyville (now Cole Street). This new structure was 75' by 136' and totaled 12,775 square feet including the mezzanine. Construction was brick and steel, with no posts to hinder work flow. This building was demolished a few years back.

January 19, 2018

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Caswell County Courthouse Clock Restoration

Click Plaque to See Larger Image
Those familiar with the clock restoration project report that a critical part needed to make the clock operational was being used as a door stop in the next-door home of Zeke and Sallie Anderson (The Clerk's House).

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Yanceyville United Methodist Church

Yanceyville United Methodist Church (Yanceyville, North Carolina)

1. The original church lot, where the cemetery is located, was deeded to the trustees of the Methodist Episcopal Church September 20, 1841. A solid brick church building was constructed, which later was stuccoed over.

2. In 1910, under the leadership of Reverend J. E. Blaylock, a modest frame church was erected on Main Street Extension, not far from where the parsonage was located in 1998.

3. The 1910 building was used for four years, when the congregation became dissatisfied with it. In 1915, under the pastorship of Reverend S. F. Nicks, the old original church was remodeled, and the congregation moved back.

4. During the pastorate of Reverend I. T. Poole a log church hut was built to house temporarily part of the Sunday School.

5. On April 18, 1941, the congregation voted to purchase the John O. Gunn lot on West Main Street. The lot purchased had been part of the Johnston estate, which was divided and sold at public auction in July 1940. The final service in the old church was an Easter sunrise service April 25, 1943. The new church was formally opened Sunday, May 2, 1943, with Reverend J. V. Early presiding.

Memorial windows dedicated in 1943: Thomas Oldham Jones, Cora Harrison Slade, Carrie Virginia Slade, Mary Elizabeth Graves, John F. Flintoff and Mary M. Flintoff, Dorabelle Graves Tucker, Hattie Smith Gunn, Bettie Slade Anderson, Lloyd Johnson, and R. Bruce Hatchett.

Greensboro Daily News (Greensboro, North Carolina), 29 June 1818, Saturday, Page 2:

The Durham district conference will convene in the Yanceyville Methodist church, July 2-4. The conference will open Tuesday night, with a sermon. Dinner will be served on the church grounds.

The Bee (Danville, Virginia), 27 October 1955, Thursday, Page 20:

Yanceyville, N.C. -- The Yanceyville Methodist Church will observe its Centennial here Sunday morning, it was announced today. The speaker will be the Rev. J. V. Early, former pastor who is now pastor of the First Methodist Church in Smithfield. Homecoming will be observed in conjunction with the centennial, and written invitations have been sent to former pastors and members outside the county. Those living within the county have been invited to attend but will not be sent written invitations, it was announced. Records are somewhat vague, but it would appear that steps were taken to organize the church some time during 1841, and it is definitely known that the church had been established in 1852.

The Bee (Danville, Virginia), 27 October 1955, Thursday, Page 24:

Observance Planned By Methodist Church In Yanceyville, N.C.

Yanceyville, N.C. -- Commemorating Week of Prayer and Self-Denial, a service of meditation and sacred songs will be given at Yanceyville Methodist Church tomorrow evening at 7:30 o'clock.

The service was written and will be led by Mrs Arthur Smith, assisted by a vested choir of 20 voices. Responses will be in the form of solos, duets and the full choir will sing humns that point the theme of "Faith, Hope, Love and Prayer." The central theme "The Altar of the Heart," will be dramatized by the choir.

Members of the choir are: Mrs. Bob White Wilson, Mrs. Edwith Harrington, Mrs. Zeke Anderson, Mrs. W. C. Jackson, Mrs. D. A. Clark, Mrs. Fred Stuck, Mrs. Ralph Aldridge, Miss Ellen Hahn, and Miss Rosalee McMullen, sopranos; Mrs. Lee Price, Mrs. J. D. Gwynn Jr., Miss Bettie Watlington, Miss Alice McDonald and Miss Bettie Anderson, altos; Arthur Smith and Bill Murphy, tenors, William Gunn and W. E. Niven, baritones, and Baron Neal and Emmett Brandon, basses.

The service is open to the public.