from Millicent V. Craig
During the Great Depression in the US, President Franklin D. Roosevelt launched the Works Progress Administration, otherwise known as the WPA. Not only did it give laborers work but it initiated projects in the arts and humanities. One of those projects was aimed at preserving the history of slaves and slavery. Through a series of interviews with freed slaves or their relatives, there emerged a wealth of information that was recorded in the dialect of the southern slave. Today it would be politically incorrect to print the dialect. With a few exceptions, your editor has taken the liberty of transcribing it and passing on the valuable genealogical remembrances of one called Unka Challilie Dalton. By referring to the place names he mentions, the area in which he spent his life can be pinpointed on the map.
The Memories of a Slave
At the time of the 1934 Census in North Carolina, Unka (uncle?) Dalton was living near Anderson Scales' store in the forks of the Mayodan and Ayresville roads in Rockingham County, NC. That evening in July he was resting and complaining about the noise emanating from "The Red Wolfe Medicine Troop of Players and Wheels". This was perhaps the last of the medicine shows and like carnivals to travel the country.
Three years later, in 1937, the interviewer returned to find him living at the home of his son, Frank Dalton, and he was then 93 years of age ( born about 1844). He was born on the plantation of Master Lee Dalton who was married to Miss Matilda Steeples (Staples). Master Lee Dalton lived on Beaver Island Creek at the John Hampton Price place. Price married Miss Mollie Dalton, the daughter of Master Lee Dalton.
Unka Challilie Dalton's mother was Silvia Dalton and his father was Peter Dalton. Master Dalton owned both of them. It would appear from the report that Master Dalton may have had a biological relationship to his master. Unka Dalton's parents were buried in the cemetery reserved for colored "to the side of Stoneville". The white Daltons were buried on the old Jimmy Scales plantation. In 1937 it was owned by John Price who owned the tobacco warehouse in Madison. His tenant is Parse (parson?) Walt Hill and the plantation is five miles from Madison. Other Daltons are buried in the old Deatherage graveyard close to Stoneville. Master Lee's mother was a Deatherage.
Although President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, Unka Dalton remained on the plantation until he was about 48 years of age (c.1892). He farmed for Master Lee who was kind to him. When he left, he purchased about an acre of land in Madison, NC, built a house, married Ellen Irving of Reidsville, NC and fathered eleven children. Frank, his son, married Mattie Cardwell; one died in West VA; Cora married Henry Cardwell; Hattie married Roy Current and they are in Winston; Della married Arthur Adkins, and there was Joe and George and Perry and Nathaniel Dalton.
Unka worked as a clean-up man at the mill in Mayodan until nearly 90 years of age. He recalled that Mary Mann married Anderson Cardwell and they were buried at Mayodan. The graves contained the slaves of Miss Nancy Watkins Webster but the graves have been built over with a tract of bungalos.
Unka Dalton mentions more of the Scales and Cardwell families of whom there were hundreds in Rockingham County and in other northern North Carolina Counties. In the accompanying article, the "Marriage Bonds of Rockingham County", there is listed all of the Daltons who lived near him in Rockingham County and those who were listed in the U. S. Censuses as living in Beaver Creek Township, Stokes County. We understand that these are the recollections of a 93 year old man and as with all data, requires documentation but hope that it will prove helpful toward making family connections.
Marriage bonds are a good source of genealogical information because they were taken out in the county of the bride's residence by the prospective groom. Not in all cases did a marriage ensue and in some cases it is quite likely that the marriage took place outside the bride's county of residence. The Works Progress Administration under the administration of President Roosevelt abstracted and assembled these records. There were taken from the State Archives of North Carolina. When examined beside the North Carolina Census records of 1790-1890, they reveal additional useful information.
There were 39 Dalton marriage bonds recorded in Rockingham County between
1793 and 1868 as follows:
Anthony Dalton and Martha Scales, bond date 31 May 1867 (?son of Joseph
and Aggie Harris)
This list shows many marriages between the Daltons, Scales, Cardwell, and Price families who are mentioned in Unka Challilie's recollections. Many of the principals lived within a 15 mile radius of his home and included the towns of Mayodan, Stoneville, Madison, Reidsville. Beaver Creek Island (the site of the Dalton/Price plantation) appears to be just over the County line in Stokes County.
As evidenced in the marriage bond listings, the name Charlotte Dalton appears several times. The first notation of a Charlotte Dalton is in the 1790 Census of Rockingham County where she is head of the household, has 5 males and 6 females in the household along with 9 slaves. This may have been a tobacco plantation.
In the 1860 Census of Stokes County there is listed an A. B. Dalton, age 55, farmer, with a personal valuation of $13,000. He may well be the Absalum B. Dalton listed below in the 1870 Census of Beaver Island Township. Several Dalton children are listed as well as Mary Poindexter Dalton , age 62 and D. Toberson Dalton, age 38.
The 1870 Federal Census of Stokes County lists the following residents of Beaver Island Township and they are clustered in successive pages of the Census records. They were: Absalum B. Dalton page 110; Alex Dalton page 112; Julian Ann Dalton page 113, and Dicey Dalton page 112. One or more of this group may have been connected to Master Lee Dalton, as discussed in the preceding article.
In addition to the Daltons who were witnesses in the above marriage bond listings, several Daltons were witnesses or bondsmen at other bond applications in Rockingham County. N. Dalton who may have been Nicholas, served as a witness to 25 bond applications between 1819 and 1847 and as a bondsman, 4 times. Ewell Dalton and Leander Dalton, either singly or jointly, served as witnesses approximately 12 times between 1819 and 1836, and Leander Dalton served as bondsman during that period. In the 1870 Census Ewel Dalton was enumerated in Mayo Township. Other Dalton witnesses included; James Dalton, 1827; John Dalton, 1832; John H. Dalton 1834 and 1837; and John M. Dalton 1835.
Between 1815 and 1866, several other Daltons served as bondsmen: Samuel
Daltom, 1815; Robert Dalton and Samuel Dalton 1827; Thomas Dalton 1842;
Rufus Dalton 1860; R. J. Dalton 1856 and John Dalton, 1866. A most unusual
situation occurred in 1827 on the application of Sally Morris and Thomas
Dority. Four Daltons appear in the register; Robert and Samuel A. Dalton
are listed as bondsmen and Ewell G. and Leander Dalton are listed as witnesses.
* Finally, the above marriage of Mary H. Dalton and John Price in 1866. Mary H. Dalton may well be the "Mollie" mentioned by Unka Challilie Dalton in the preceding article and the daughter of Master Lee Dalton. Your editor also wonders whether the name "Lee" was shortened from Leander since Lee, per se, does not appear in the censuses. As with all data, documentation should follow by the user. Many residents of Rockingham and Stokes County, NC had emigrated from Virginia to take advantage of the fertile land and may indeed have come from the Pittsylvania, VA area.
compiled by Millicent V, Craig
Many of the Daltons on the following list were titled, professionals
or property owners.
The data was extracted from the Calendar of Converts, 1703-1838, Vol. I
key: ap =applied; ac =accepted
Gerrard Dalton, Gentleman, Dublin; ap. 1 Dec 1709, ac. 24 Dec.1707
The following bits of data have arrived from a variety of sources and may be helpful to someone.
Andrea Dalton, born 26 Nov 1860, baptized 2 Dec 1860 at St. Austin's R, C. Church, Grassendale Garston, Liverpool. Parents; Patrick and Susanna Dalton.
"Down a Cobbled Street: The Story of Clovelly" by Sheila Ellis. H. Dalton is mentioned on p. 28. Badger Books, Ltd. Bideford, Devon.
The name "Clovelly" reminds us that this was the home of our Sarah Stazicker in Croston, Lancashire. Sarah, a direct descendent of William and Ann Glover Dalton, will attain her 100th birthday this month, one of her goals. Sarah is in good health and welcomes hearing from her many friends at the Parish Retirement Home in Croston.
DGS member Leroy Baker of Michigan has Cliffords in his family line and writes about the father of Rosamund (Joan) Clifford in response to a DGS Journal article. Leroy states that Rosamund's father was Walter fitsPONS who changed his name to Clifford from Clifford Castle. (Rosamund was a mistress of Henry II).
There were very few Daltons in the Leicestershire Parish Registers and
the following two gentlemen may have actually been from other parishes.
Suffolk Cemetery Listings