When Frances Seaberry Artis died in 1878, Adam Artis was left with no fewer than 11 children under the age of 18. Despite this brood, his relative wealth made him an attractive widower. He soon remarried, and he didn’t have to go far to do it. In November 1880, less than a year after his daughter Louvicey wed John W. Aldridge, Adam Artis married John’s sister, Amanda A. Aldridge.
Adam and Amanda Aldridge Artis’ children included:
Louetta Artis, born 1881, seems to have died in young adulthood. No record of any marriage has been found.
Robert Elder Artis, born 1883, was probably named after his maternal grandfather, Robert Aldridge. He was farmer in the Pikeville area of northern Wayne County and married three times, to Christana Simmons, Malinda Applewhite and Amanda Long. His children included Eva Mae, Robert Arzell, Mabel Irene, Challie, Adam, Edgar Lee, Etta Christine, Georgia, Nora and Maggie Artis.
Columbus Estell Artis, born 1886, was called “C.E.” For 30 years, he operated a funeral home in Wilson NC and was counted among the most prosperous of the town’s African-American citizens. He married twice, to Ada Diana Adams and Ruby Barber, and had at least one child, Naomi.
Josephine Artis, born 1887, was the longest and last living of all of Adam’s children. She married Solomon Sherrod in 1907 and settled in Wilson in the 1920s. Their children were: Booker T. Sherrod, Alliner Sherrod Davis, Jarvis Estelle Sherrod, Doretta Elizabeth Sherrod Davis, Leonard Oscar Sherrod, Minnie Bell Sherrod Parker, Solomon Conton Sherrod Jr., Harriet Sherrod, Amanda Bell Sherrod, Flora Annie Lee Sherrod Simms, Beulah Olivia Sherrod Williams and Elmer Lee Sherrod. Josephine Sherrod died 8 April 1988, a month before her 101st birthday.
June Scott Artis, born 1889, farmed in the Stantonsburg area of Wilson County, not far from his father’s lands near Eureka, Wayne County. He married Ethel Pearl Becton and had four children, James Brody Artis, Edgar Joel Artis, Amanda Bell Artis Jones, and Gladys L. Artis. June Scott died in June 1973, less than three months after his brother C.E.
Lillie Beatrice Artis, born 1891, married three times in her short life — to Celebus Thompson, McDaniel Whitley and Chester Pridgen. Her children included Genetta Thompson, Wheeler Thompson, Columbus Whitley, Sampson Whitley, Floyd Marvin Whitley, Walter Andrew Whitley, Robert Whitley, William Jessie Whitley, Wilhelmena Pridgen and Mildred Beatrice Pridgen. Lillie died in 1935 of heart issues complicated by pregnancy.
Henry J.B. Artis, born 1894, married Laurina House. His father Adam is buried in a small plot on land still owned by J.B.’s descendants. His children were Lillie Odessa Artis Baker, Julius House Artis, Roosevelt Artis, Columbus Estelle Artis II, Henry J.B. Artis Jr., Esther Artis Bunch, Jesse C. Artis, Mae H. Artis, Dorena Artis, and James Lacey Artis. J.B., too, died in 1973, a month before his brother C.E.
Annie Deliah Artis, born 1897, married Wiley Hodges, then William Sauls. She had no known children and died in 1957.
Amanda Aldridge Artis died a few days after the birth of daughter Amanda Alberta Artis in 1899. Josephine Artis Sherrod, then about 12, told me that she discovered her mother’s lifeless body. John and Louvicey Artis Aldridge — the child’s uncle in one direction and half-sister in another — took in the infant to rear with their large brood. Alberta married James W. Cooper and had several children. She died in Wilson NC in 1985.