Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Caswell County Historical Association: Presidents

CCHA History: Presidents

On March 28, 1956, twenty-four interested people met in the Agriculture Building in Yanceyville to discuss organizing a historical association for Caswell County. Were you alive then?

The stated purpose of the organization would be to “do all in its power to collect and preserve the available historical material connected with the history of Caswell County.”

Miss Anne Yancey (Annie) Gwynn was named chairperson of the group. At the next meeting she was elected president, with:

James Yancey Blackwell vice president

Mrs. John Yancey Gatewood second vice president (Maud Gatewood’s mother),

Ben Miles third vice president

Mrs. Alice W. Smith secretary and

James Ezekiel (Zeke) Anderson treasurer (Sallie Anderson’s husband).

There is much more on the CCHA’s history, but in this post we wanted to share a list of CCHA Presidents:

1. Anne Yancey (Annie) Gwynn (1891-1985)
2. Carolyn McLin Moore Upchurch Thomas (1915-2006)
3. Mary Yarbrough McAden Satterfield (1911-2003)
4. James Ezekiel Anderson (1914-2005) (elected but could not serve)
5. Mrs. Arthur Smith (not further identified)

6. Stephen Edward (Steve) Walker (1923-2004)
7. John Burch Blaylock (1909-1995)
8. Mary Skipwith Brown (1905-1995)
9. Mary Yarbrough McAden Satterfield (1911-2003) (served six months)
10. Sallie Banks Newman (1893-1993)

11. Millard Quentin Plumblee (1906-1987)
12. Florence Anne Taylor Daniel
13. James L. Ray, Jr. (not further identified; but apparently President on May 12, 1999)
14. Elizabeth Pierce Parker McPherson (1920-2019)
15. Karen Duzan Oestreicher

16. Sallie Gibson Smith
17. James C. (Jim) Hilton, Jr.
18. Jeff Nidle

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Caswell County, North Carolina: Top "50" List

Top "50"

Below, as determined by input to the Caswell County Historical Association, are the top fifty events relating to Caswell County, North Carolina. The order is approximately chronological:

1. Caswell County founded 1777
2. Leasburg established as first county seat

3. Milton established 1796

4. President George Washington slept at the Dudley Gatewood house 1791

5. Person County carved from Caswell County 1792
6. County seat moved to Caswell Courthouse (became Yanceyville)

Thursday, December 26, 2019

2020 Membership Drive: Caswell County Historical Association

On January 1, 2020, the Caswell County Historical Association (CCHA) will launch a drive to retain existing members and to attract new members.

Why stay or join?

CCHA Membership Benefits Include:

Newsletter published quarterly (four issues/year)
Free Museum admission
10% off price of items sold at Museum
One hour free research
$15 (instead of $25) for additional fixed-fee research
10% off additional hourly-rate research
Access to the Members-Only Area of the CCHA website

Not enough? Just consider the effort that goes into the following:

CCHA Website

Caswell County Genealogy

Caswell County Photograph Collection

CCHA Weblog

CCHA on Facebook

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

North Carolina Troops, 1861-1865

North Carolina Troops, 1861-1865: A Roster, Volume 20: Generals, Staff, and Militia. Edited by Matthew M. Brown and Michael W. Coffey. (Raleigh: N.C. Office of Archives and History, 2017. Preface, introduction, essays, rosters, illustrations, notes, index. 526 pages ($50.00).

Now in its fifty-first year and twentieth volume, "North Carolina Troops, 1861-1865: A Roster" continues to chronicle the service of North Carolinians in the American Civil War. This half-century-long project has so far documented all of the Confederate artillery, cavalry, and infantry units raised by the Old North State during the years of conflict, including the Cherokee warriors of Thomas's Legion and the Junior and Senior Reserves. This current volume turns attention to some well-known and some little-known players in the struggle.

The first few pages of Volume 20 detail the service of the thirty-six Confederate generals from North Carolina, many of whom are well known. No fewer than eleven have had at least one biography written, and others are recounted in histories of the units they commanded or studies of battles or campaigns in which they participated.

The much larger, and more important, sections of this volume showcase army staff officers, unassigned enlistees, and a portion of the North Carolina Militia. Staff officers are men who worked behind the scenes to ensure that the army ran as smoothly, efficiently, and effectively as possible. Their work may go unrecognized, but it is the backbone of any military organization. The areas in which these officers served include commissary staff, chaplains, engineers, medical staff, ordnance, provost, quartermaster, signal corps, and more. In the higher echelon, staff officers served the field generals directly as adjutant general staff or aides-de-camp. All these positions were extremely important, if often overlooked. The introductory section detailing how military staff functioned efficiently outlines for readers how a min-nineteenth-century army was organized.

Unassigned enlistees comprise a very small but interesting segment of this volume. These men enlisted for service but were never assigned to a unit. Reasons vary, but include men being physically unfit for combat, others captured in their camp of instruction before being assigned, and yet others captured in hospitals while convalescing from illness or injury. The list, though small, is significant for researchers and genealogists.

The bulk of this volume deals with the generals and staff, as well as Regiments 1-61 of the North Carolina Militia. The volume's most valuable contribution by far is the 137-page history of the North Carolina Militia. This part of North Carolina's Civil War story can be extremely confusing, especially for researchers with little background in the structure of North Carolina's military forces during the war. Coeditor Michael W. Coffey is to be commended for writing a history of the North Carolina Militia that is clear, concise, and easy to understand. This section of the volume could stand alone as in individual history and should serve to help untangle the intricate web of militia, volunteers, and state units that existed early in the war.

Researchers, genealogists, and series enthusiasts will find much to like about this latest volume of the "North Carolina Troops" series. But this important work is not yet complete. Still to come are volumes on the remainder of the North Carolina Militia, Navy and Marine personnel, North Carolina Union Volunteers, and United States Colored Troops. Once finished, the series will truly represent all North Carolinians who served in any capacity during our nation's darkest hour. If this volume is any indication, the series is in good hands with coeditors Brown and Coffey.

Source: Book Review by Andrew Suppstadt (N. C. Division of State Historic Sites) in The North Carolina Historical Review, Volume XCV, Number 3, July 2018.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Johnny Gunn's "Hut" in Yanceyville, North Carolina

Johnny Gunn's Hut

The parents of teenagers in Yanceyville decided that having children driving on Old 86 to Danville could be dangerous and organized the group of their children into what became known as the Hut Hoppers. Dorothy Zimmerman came to instruct us in waltz and foxtrot. We gathered Saturday nights and danced the the night away. Johnny Green [Johnny Gunn, Jr.] was a "dancing fool" and a "smooth operator." It was a joyous time in my memory.

Source: Nancy Page Dunn 10 December 2019 Post to the Caswell County Historical Association Facebook Page.

The "Hut" also was used by the local Boy Scout Troop #18.

Photograph Date: Late 1950s. Left-to-right: Wayne Moore; Jim Upchurch; Jim Rice; Danny Carlton; and Gordon Satterfield. Obscured scout in rear has not been identified.

Sunday, December 01, 2019

Ancestry.com Caswell County Birth Database Corrupt

Ancestry.com Caswell County Birth Database Corrupt

The Ancestry.com North Carolina Birth Index, 1800-2000 database has a serious coding problem that Ancestry.com refuses to address. I brought this to their attention several years ago and continue to inform them of the need to correct the corrupt database, all without success. Thus, until this is resolved, be wary of any search of this database that shows Catawba County as the county of birth. The person may really have been born in Caswell County. Look at the actual record and check the township. If you see the following abbreviations, the birth county is Caswell: P (Pelham); DR (Dan River); M (Milton); LH (Locust Hill); Y (Yanceyville); L (Leasburg); SC (Stoney Creek); A (Anderson); and HT (Hightowers).

The Caswell County coverage in the North Carolina Birth Index is divided into three sections:

Roll Number: NCVR_B_CO20_66001

Roll Number: NCVR_B_CO20_66002

Roll Number: NCVR_B_CO20_68001

The Catawba County coverage in the North Carolina Birth Index is divided into four sections:

Roll Number: NCVR_B_CO21_66001

Roll Number: NCVR_B_CO21_66002

Roll Number: NCVR_B_CO21_68003

Various [Delayed Birth Records]
Roll Number: NCVR_B_CO21_68001

The problem for those researching Caswell County (CO 20) apparently is in the 1913-1956 period. When you go to Roll Number NCVR_B_CO20_66001 (see above under Caswell County) you are taken to the Catawba County births index.

The problem for those researching Catawba County (CO 21) apparently is in the 1960-1979 period. When you go to Roll Number NCVR_B_CO21_68003 (see above under Catawba County) you are taken to the Caswell County births index.

Some records obviously have been incorrectly indexed either by Ancestry.com or by the North Carolina State Archives.