On 4 July 1902, dower laid off and partition made of Robert Aldridge‘s land as follows:
Dower — Eliza Aldridge received 53 acres on a run of Stoney Run Branch.
Lot No. 1 — Mathew W. Aldridge received 100 acres on Stoney Run and Hurricane Branches, excluding the Agustus Church and free school house lots. An interest Mathew had bought from his father was included in the described tract and the residue was valued at $200.
Lot No. 2 — George W. Aldridge received 42 acres on Stoney Run and the county road valued at $200.
Lot No. 3 — Joseph Aldridge received 53 acres on Stoney Run and the county road valued at $200.
Lot No. 4 — David Aldridge received 80 acres on Stoney Run and the county road valued at $200.
Lot No. 5 — Robert Aldridge received 41 acres on a prong of Stoney Run and the Spring Road valued at $200.
Lot No. 6 — John W. Aldridge received 50 acres on Stoney Run Branch below the mineral spring and the Spring Road valued at $285.
Lot No. 7 — Frances Locust received 33 acres on Stoney Run and the Spring Road valued at $200.
Lot No. 8 — Talitha Brewington, Hattie Brewington, Elijah Brewington, Mattie Brewington, Lundy Brewington, and Toney Brewington jointly and subject to the life estate of Joshua Brewington, received 33 acres on W&W Railroad valued at $193.
Lot No. 9 — Louetta Aldridge received 32 acres on Stoney Run Branch valued at $193.
Lot No. 10 — Lizzie Aldridge received 32 acres on the W&W Railroad and Stoney Run Branch valued at $193.
Lot No. 11 — Louetta Artis, Robert Artis, Columbus Artis, Josephine Artis, J. Scott Artis, J.B. Artis, Lillie Artis, Annie Artis and Elberta Artis, jointly and subject to the life estate of Adam Artis, received 32 acres at the mouth of a ditch on the run of Stoney Run and the railroad valued at $193.
Submitted by Sam C. Casey, Walter C. O’Berry, Ira W. Hatch.
The margins of this document contain notations and signatures acknowledging receipt of moneys due to balance the lot values, including signatures of Lizzie Aldridge, Tilithia King, J.W. Aldridge, Joseph Aldridge, Hattie Brewington, Columbus Artis, Elijah Brewington, Tony C. Brewington, Robert Aldridge, Lundia Brewington, and June Scott Artis, and Eliza Artis’ mark.
John Aldridge, owner of Lot No. 6, paid $7 each to the owners of Lots 8-11, and $57 to the Clerk of Superior Court for costs of the division.
Louetta Aldridge’s share was divided among her siblings “the owner of said amount now being dead this day Aug 22=1904.”
Robert Aldridge, my great-great-great-grandfather, was born circa 1819, probably in Duplin County NC, and died about 1899. He appears as a hireling in the 1850 census in Sampson County in the household of Calvin Simmons. By 1860, he and his wife Mary Eliza Balkcum Aldridge were living in southern Wayne County with their youngest children. His accumulation of property is something of a mystery, as his recorded deeds do not yield the acreage distributed in his estate. Bits of the land remain in family hands.
There is a Stoney Run in Wayne County today, but it courses several miles northwest of the area in which Robert Aldridge is known to have owned land. I suspect that the waterway referred to above is now known as Yellow Marsh Branch, which has been dammed to form Durhams Lake. Robert owned a brickyard in the vicinity. “Agustus Church” is now Augustus Chapel Missionary Baptist Church, and the current edifice stands on the original land as what is now 599 Durham Lake Road, Dudley. The church celebrated its 145th anniversary in 2012. The Wilmington & Weldon Railroad is now owned by Atlantic Coast Line. My best guess for the “county road” is the road now known as the Old Mount Olive Highway, which runs alongside the railroad.
Abstract of document in the file of Robert Aldridge, Estate Records, Wayne County Records, North Carolina State Archives.
Photos of Mathew Aldridge, George Aldridge and Frances “Fannie” Aldridge Locust, alias Fannie Randall, in the collection of Lisa Y. Henderson.