Mack Daniel Coley was born in 1866 in northern Wayne County. He graduated from Hampton Institute’s preparatory division in 1890, then received a bachelor’s degree from Lincoln in 1895. He returned to North Carolina shortly after and, in November 1896, married fellow Hampton graduate Hattie B. Wynn, daughter of Charles W. and Frances Aldridge Winn.
M.D. Coley’s remarkable career as educator — and lawyer — was chronicled in Arthur Bunyan Caldwell’s History of the American Negro and His Institutions (1921):
[Sidenote: Mack Coley appears in the 1870 census of Wayne Coley in a household headed by Winney Coley. At age 61, she is too old to have been his mother (never mind the bad information posted on a dozen family trees on Ancestry.com.) Grandmother, perhaps? If so, how do the Yelvertons mentioned above fit? Winnie Coley is not kin, but she was the mother of children by Napoleon Hagans and Adam T. Artis. Stay tuned.]