Births Deaths Marriages, Uncategorized

1976? Or 2000?

When Effie Mae Smith was born in Goldsboro on 6 October 1905 (or perhaps 1904), the state of North Carolina did not require birth certificates. Years later, however, she found she needed one, applied, and her so-called “delayed” certificate was filed with the Wayne County register of deeds.

On 16 November 1921, Effie May Smith married Frank W. Stanfield in Greensboro, North Carolina. Their marriage license clearly names her parents, Isham Smith and Nancy Henderson Smith Diggs.

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Frank was a World War I veteran. He died in 1935 and is buried in a Cypress Hill National Cemetery in Brooklyn, New York.  Beside his stone is one that reads: EFFIE M., HIS WIFE Oct 6 1904 Dec 27 1978. This certainly appears to be Effie Mae Smith Stanfield.

Effie Stanfield marker

Further, the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) lists Effie M. Stanfield, Social Security number xxx-xx-8462, born 10/6/1905, died 12/27/1976, last address in Brooklyn, zip code.


There’s this: a Social Security application — Effie Mae Bridges (applied in 1952 as Effie Mae Smith), xxx-xx-9518, born 10/6/1904 in Goldsboro, North Carolina, to Isaam Smith and Nancy Henderson, died 2/15/2000. And it’s backed up by a SSDI entry for Effie M. Bridges, same birth and death dates, last address in Brooklyn 11233. What is going on here? Identity theft? If not, who in the world is buried next to Frank Stanfield???

Photo courtesy of

Births Deaths Marriages, Paternal Kin, Uncategorized

Cousin Nancy’s descendants, found.

While I was away in Mauritius, I received a thrilling message in my Ancestry mailbox. “I am still recovering from the shock of finding info on Nancy Smith,” it began.  The amazement was mutual. “Wow,” I responded. “God bless the Internet.”  The writer’s partner is the son of Bessie Lee Smith, daughter of Nancy Henderson Smith of Goldsboro, North Carolina. She promises to provide what additional information she can about this branch of my Hendersons, whose descendants have long proved elusive. I’m looking forward to the collaboration. My grandmother spoke often of her Smith cousins; how I wish she could have lived long enough to learn what had become of them.


Great-great-grandparent demographics.

Edward Cunningham Harrison and Mary Brown. Jasper Holmes and Matilda, whose maiden name is unknown. John Walker Colvert and Harriet Nicholson. Henry W. McNeely and Martha Margaret Miller. Green Taylor and Fereby Taylor. Willis Barnes and Cherry Battle. John William Aldridge and Louvicey Artis. Joseph Buckner Martin and Loudie Henderson. 

These are my 16 great-great-grandparents.

Four were born in Virginia; the remainder in North Carolina. They were born between 1817 and 1874; most in the 1840s or ’50s. All died in the state in which they were born.

Of the 13 born in the antebellum era, 11 were enslaved. One was a free man of color. Two of the enslaved were children of their owner. All of the three born after the war were born to freeborn parents.

Fourteen were of varying degrees of African descent, classified as black or mulatto. Two were white.

Hat tip to Edie Lee Harris for the exercise.