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The Copeland Family

Part 2 of 4 

The next son was BENJAMIN COPELAND, who was born in 1812; He was a wagonmaker and became a farmer in his later years. He was married to FRANCES HAWKINS, b. 1822, who was the daughter of AMBROSE HAWKINS & CHINA HARWELL; FRANCES was a sister of SUSAN HAWKINS, who married, JOSEPH COPELAND. No marriage records have been found for either JOSEPH or BENJAMIN, but they apparently married the HAWKINS sisters about the same time, around 1842, judging by the ages of their oldest children. Both of these HAWKINS and HARWELL families were free people of color who appeared in the records of both Halifax and Warren at least as far back as the late 1700s, with the HAWKINS going back even further, the earliest known ancestor being SOLOMON HAWKINS, born abt. 1720, died after 1769 in Bertie County, NC. CHINA HARWELL and 2 of her siblings, SALLY & DAVID, first appeared in records in the 1790s, along with their mother, SALLY HARWELL, where it was revealed that they were illegitimate children of color when being bonded out as apprentices; in 1797, CHINA was the first of the HARWELL children bonded out, being 3 years old at the time.
BENJAMIN & FRANCES moved from Halifax to Warren County shortly after they married since all of their children were indicated in the 1860 Census to have been born in Warren County. They had at least 2 sets of twins, something that occasionally shows up in their descendants, too. Their children were:

1) PENINA COPELAND (1843-1876 Warren Co.,NC) married on Dec. 19, 1867 to JAMES THOMAS GREEN (1842-1921 Warren County, NC) and they were my 2nd great-grandparents; he was the son of WILLIAM A. GREEN & MARY POLLY GREEN, whose history is discussed under the "Story of Thomas Green, Part 2". They only had a few years together before PENNIE died, but they had 2 children, WILLIAM GREEN (b. 1869, died after 1940) and MARY FRANCES GREEN (b. 1871- d. 1899). MARY FRANCES married ON Feb. 22, 1890 in Halifax Co., to WALTER SNEED (1852-1941) son of WILLIAM M. SNEED & NANCY SNEED. JAMES T. GREEN later remarried to LOUISA MANLEY, widow of JOSEPH COPELAND.

2) MARTHA COPELAND (1845-abt 1877) married on July 12, 1865 to SOLOMON MILLS (1842-abt 1895) son of NATHAN MILLS & BETTIE DALES. After MARTHA's death, SOLOMON married 2 more times. SOLOMON & MARTHA lived in Halifax County, and had 7 children: CAROLINE MILLS (mar: on Feb. 17, 1886 to WILLIAM BENNETT RICHARDSON, son of BENNETT RICHARDSON & DORCAS ANN RICHARDSON, of Warren County); ADALINE MILLS (mar: on May 27, 1883 to ALLISON LYNCH, son of JAMES LYNCH & MARY PRYOR of Halifax Co.); ANGELINA R. MILLS (mar: on Nov. 12, 1885 to TILMAN P. LYNCH, son of JAMES LYNCH & MARY PRYOR); JOHN JOSEPH MILLS (mar: 1st on May 8, 1892 to NANCY ANN COPELAND, dau/of HESAKIAH COPELAND & NANCY RUDD; 2nd on Jan. 17, 1900 to MARTHA ANN SILVER, dau/of WILLIAM HENRY SILVER & NANCY ANN RICHARDSON); ELIJAH MILLS (mar: abt 1895, to CORNELIA _____); PATTIE MILLS (mar: on Jan. 26, 1898 to CORNELIUS LEE, son of CASWELL MATTHEWS & MARINA LEE); and MARY V. MILLS (mar: on Jan. 5, 1893 to PHILIP COPELAND, son of HESAKIAH COPELAND & NANCY RUDD).

3) MARY COPELAND (1847-bef.1900) married on Feb. 11, 1869 to RUFUS G. RICHARDSON (1844-1921 Warren Co.,NC), son of NANCY RICHARDSON. RUFUS & MARY lived first with his mother in Halifax in 1870, but moved to Warren County by 1880 where most of their family remained. Their children were: MATTHEW H. RICHARDSON (mar: 1st to MARGARET WILLIAMS, dau/of JOHN WESLEY WILLIAMS & SALLIE BOYD; 2nd ON Feb. 5, 1896 to LUCY C. BURGESS, dau/of JUNIUS & ALMYRA BURGESS); IDELLA JANE RICHARDSON (mar: on Dec. 5, 1895 to JAMES A. ALSTON, son of ALBERT A. ALSTON & ELIZABETH ALSTON); THOMAS ANN RICHARDSON (mar: on Dec. 25, 1895 to PAUL TAFT ALSTON, son of TAFT ALSTON & ANN ALSTON); RUFUS RICHARDSON, left NC early on and was living in Trenton, NJ by 1910 where he was married about 1905 to MARY R.____, of Virginia; and MARY RICHARDSON, who may have died shortly after birth, since I haven't found anything else on her.

4) JOHN WASHINGTON COPELAND (1850- bef. 1891) is one of the more confusing of the family members because it is obvious that some records have him confused with his twin brother, JAMES HARRISON COPELAND. The brothers alternated in the names they used, sometimes both using the same names, it seems. JOHN married on April 6, 1873 in Halifax to MARY ALICE RICHARDSON (1857-1944 Halifax Co.,NC) daughter of ASA & MARY RICHARDSON. They lived in Warren County, but never had any children together, and in fact, ALICE never had any children at all, even after remarrying in 1891 to WILLIAM H. COPELAND, JOHN's cousin; she outlived WILLIAM, and lived the remainder of her days with the GEORGE MILLS family in Enfield, Halifax County, NC. JOHN had apparently died sometime shortly before 1891, since his wife did remarry at that time.

5) JAMES HARRISON COPELAND (1850-bef 1900) was the twin brother of JOHN WASHINGTON COPELAND. He was also fairly elusive in records, although he was in the Census from 1850 to 1880, where he was counted twice- once with his parents in Warren county, the other in Halifax with his wife and 4 children. With the exception of one son, his children don't seem to have lived very long after adulthood. JAMES H. was 1st married to MARY RICHARDSON (1856-bef. 1894) the daughter of ROBERT RICHARDSON & NANCY RICHARDSON of Halifax County. Their children were:
JENKINS COPELAND (mar: on March 8, 1894 in Halifax to PLUMMER LEE, b. 1842/d. 1927 Halifax Co.,NC, son of WILLIAM WIGGINS LEE & LUCRETIA PERKINS; JENKINS was PLUMMER's 3rd wife, he went on to have a total of 5 wives, outliving all except his last one, HATTIE RICHARDSON, whom he married in 1918 when he was 72 years old; JENKINS & PLUMMER had no children together); LEANDER GIDEON COPELAND, lived to old age and left lots of descendants, unlike most of the rest of his siblings. He was married on Sept. 12, 1895 to DELLA RICHARDSON, daughter of JAMES NICK RICHARDSON & SALLIE NICK RICHARDSON, of Halifax Co.; ANAM COPELAND, b.1876, have found nothing on her after 1880; and ROBERT COPELAND, b. 1877, may have been a prisoner in 1900 Edgecombe County, the last record I found on him. JAMES HARRISON COPELAND married 2nd on Dec. 9, 1891 to LAURA SILVER, b. 1871, whose identity I have not been able to verify as to whether or not that was her maiden name or perhaps a married name. Whatever the case, she died probably during their child's birth who was CURLEY COPELAND, b. Sept. 6, 1895 Halifax, he committed suicide and died of a gunshot wound on Jan. 18, 1930 Halifax Co.,NC. CURLY married on Sept. 15, 1912 to ELIZA LOUISA RICHARDSON, daughter of JAMES NICK RICHARDSON & SALLIE NICK RICHARDSON.

6) MARGIANNE COPELAND (1851-1929 in Halifax Co.,NC. She married on Dec. 21, 1871 in Warren County to WILEY BURTON RICHARDSON (1850-1925 Halifax Co.), son of ASA & MARY RICHARDSON. BURTON & MARGIANNE had 10 children: SARAH RICHARDSON (mar: on Oct. 6, 1892 to JOHN HEDGEPETH, son of CELIA HEDGEPETH); ELIAS LAWRENCE RICHARDSON (mar: to AMANDA MELTON of Suffolk, VA, daughter of JOHN MELTON & SALLY LEWIS); ALVANA RICHARDSON (mar: on Dec. 28, 1892 to GORDON SOLOMON HEDGEPETH, son of NEWELL HEDGEPETH & ELIZABETH RICHARDSON; of note here is that NEWELL was the son of MARTHA COPELAND & STEPHEN HEDGEPETH); CHARLES BURTON RICHARDSON (mar: on Jan. 11 ,1907 to ANNIE B. HARPER, dau/of BURGESS HARPER & TEMPIE BLOUNT); OCTAVIA RICHARDSON (mar: on Nov. 5, 1900 to JAMES SOLOMON WILLIAMS, son of ANDERSON WILLIAMS & SARAH BURGESS of Warren County); TILMAN B. RICHARDSON (mar: on March 11, 1905 to JOSEPHINE RICHARDSON, dau/of JOHN RICHARDSON & SARAH HAWLEY of Halifax County); EDWARD RICHARDSON (mar: on Jan. 22, 1905 to SARAH ELIZA SILVER, dau/of THOMAS SILVER & BETTIE RICHARDSON, of Halifax County); DONIE RICHARDSON (mar: on Oct. 18, 1905 to DANIEL RICHARDSON, son of COFIELD RICHARDSON & ELIZA JANE RICHARDSON of Warren County); LADY VAN RICHARDSON (mar: on Dec. 27, 1905 to THOMAS ANSTEAD RICHARDSON, son of ELLEN JOANNA RICHARDSON; and MARGIE RICHARDSON (mar: on Dec. 27, 1911 to ABERNATHY B. RICHARDSON, son of ARCHABLE RICHARDSON & PATTIE FRANCES RICHARDSON.

7) BENJAMIN FRANKLIN COPELAND JR.(1855- abt 1899 Warren Co.) His nickname was BALDY, and was one of the 2nd set of COPELAND twins born to BENJAMIN & FRANCES. He was married on Dec. 23, 1876 to SALLIE RICHARDSON (1857-abt 1918) daughter of JAMES B. RICHARDSON & LUCY RICHARDSON originally of Warren Co. On Oct. 3, 1900, SALLIE remarried to WILLIAM HENRY YOUNG (1854-1917 Henderson, Vance Co.,NC) son of ROBERT YOUNG & CAROLINE THORPE of Granville County. BENJAMIN JR. & SALLIE had the following children: LUCY COPELAND; PENNY COPELAND (mar: on Jan. 15, 1896 to JAMES BENNETT RICHARDSON, son of BENNETT RICHARDSON & DORCAS ANN RICHARDSON); JENNIE COPELAND (mar: on Dec. 27, 1899 to MILES HUNTER RICHARDSON, son of JOHN & POLLIE RICHARDSON). Tragically both JENNIE & MILES died between 1905 and 1910, and left at least 2 young children, LUCY ANN & KENNIE RICHARDSON, who were raised by their Aunt PENNY COPELAND & her husband JAMES BENNETT RICHARDSON.  There also another child, JAMES "JIMMIE" RICHARDSON, who was also likely another child of JENNIE & MILES, all of whom were raised as the children of JAMES BENNETT RICHARDSON & PENNY COPELAND
.; MARY COPELAND; JAMES BENJAMIN COPELAND (mar: on Dec. 27, 1905 to MARY JANE RICHARDSON, dau/of HARDY RICHARDSON & MATILDA MILLS); LOUISA COPELAND (mar: on Nov. 19, 1902 to FED EVANS, son of WILLIAM EVANS & LUCY RICHARDSON); JESSIE BELLE COPELAND (mar: Dec. 25, 1907 to WINDSOR RICHARDSON, son of THOMAS SWEPTSON RICHARDSON & ALICE HAWKINS); and AUSTIN/ALSTON COPELAND (mar: on Jan. 6, 1918 to MAHALIA RICHARDSON, dau/of SHULAS COLFAX RICHARDSON & EMMA RICHARDSON).

8) FRANCES COPELAND, who was born in 1855, was the twin sister of BENJAMIN COPELAND JR. She had a very short life, since she died by 1880, perhaps as early as 1875 after the birth of her only child, RUINA RICHARDSON. FRANCES married on March 10, 1874 to JOHN FAULCON RICHARDSON, (1855-1935 Halifax Co.,NC) the son of ASA RICHARDSON & MARY RICHARDSON. FAULCON remarried twice more within a fairly short period of time, 1st in 1880 to ELIZA JANE PETTIFORD, and 2nd to ROSANNA RICHARDSON, with whom he had 6 more children. JOHN & FRANCES' daughter, RUINA RICHARDSON, b. Sept. 1875, died June 9, 1935 Enfield, Halifax Co.,NC, married on Oct. 13, 1897 to DAVID DIXON, b. 1848 Edgecombe Co.,NC/d. 1910 Nash Co.,NC. This was DAVID's 2nd marriage, having previously been married to GINSEY BATTLE of Edgecombe Co.

9) ELISHA E. COPELAND (1857-bef. 1900) was the "quiet" member of the family as far as records go. He only appears in 3 Census records, but he did get married and many of his children married members of the WEST family which makes them even more connected to both sides of my families. He married on Nov. 22, 1879 to ELIZABETH WEST, b. 1858, daughter of MATTHEW EVANS-WEST & HARRIET ODOM of Warren County. ELIZABETH, known as LIZZIE, had previously been married to WILEY CARTER (1854-1879) who was the son of HAWKINS CARTER & ELIZABETH WIGGINS, and they had one son, HAWKINS CARTER (1876-1934) who married SARAH B. RICHARDSON, the daughter of COFIELD RICHARDSON & ELIZA JANE RICHARDSON. I haven't found LIZZIE after 1900, where she was head of household with her 7 children by ELISHA, and it was indicated that she was divorced, but I do believe that she died because her children were scattered in different households by 1910. ELISHA isn't in the 1900 census, and I do believe that he must have died about that time, especially judging by the age of the children the last one which was born in 1897. The children OF ELISHA & LIZZIE COPELAND were: GARFIELD COPELAND (mar: on Nov. 24, 1903 to MARY ALICE WEST, daughter of JOSEPH JOHN EVANS-WEST & JANE CARTER; JOSEPH was the brother of MATTHEW EVANS-WEST); MARY FRANCES COPELAND (mar: on March 23, 1903, to SOLOMON COPELAND, son of HESAKIAH COPELAND & NANCY RUDD); BETTIE COPELAND (mar: on Dec. 26, 1906 to JOHN NEWSOM, son of JACK ALSTON & FREDRICKA NEWSOM), as info, BETTIE died of tuberculosis as so many others were dying of at the time; WALTER COPELAND, (mar: on Jan. 20, 1915 to EVA RICHARDSON, daughter of LEONARD RICHARDSON & WINNIE SILVER); VAN COPELAND (mar: on June 11, 1911 to SAVANNAH WEST, daughter of JOHN LANDON WEST & PARTHENIA EVANS; as info, JOHN L. was nephew to both MATTHEW & JOSEPH JOHN EVANS-WEST); HODGIE COPELAND, b. 1897, probably died shortly after 1900; and ANNIE COPELAND-CARTER, b. 1896/d. 1972 Nash Co. (mar: on Nov. 14, 1912 to WILLIE HODGES RUDD, son of ALICE RUDD). I have put ANNIE last because of the circumstances of her story which can be better explained here. After the death of their mother, ANNIE was adopted by her half-brother, HAWKINS CARTER, where both she and her brother, WALTER, were living in 1910. They were both listed with the CARTER surnames, with WALTER listed as "COPELAND CARTER", brother, while ANNIE was listed as "daughter". ANNIE took on the CARTER surname, which was how she was thereafter known.

10) LOUISA E. COPELAND, born 1860. I haven't found anything on her after 1870. I believe that she likely died around that time.

11) VIRGINIA COPELAND, born Dec. 1864, died January 8, 1937 Portsmouth, VA, was the youngest child of BENJAMIN & FRANCES COPELAND. Married on March 5, 1880 to ALFRED EXUM COPELAND, her cousin. See his file on previous page.
 

 

 

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