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CHAPTER 2 MRS. JENNIE I. COLEMAN'S INTRODUCTION TO THE HISTORY OF THE ROBERT COLEMAN FAMILY It is difficult indeed to know how best to arrange and present the history of a family which first came to Virginia as early as 1652. Of all the wealth of material rediscovered by the efforts of many, covering a period of over three hundred years, by far the best was the Diary of Mrs. Jennie I. Coleman. She was truly devoted to a study of family history. By far, she has left the most valuable contribution in original form. To Misses Julia and Mary Faucette, Mrs. Coleman was "Aunt Jennie," for she was a sister of their mother. To the remainder of us, she is "Cousin Jennie." The terms are used interchangeably in this Book. Mrs. Etta Rosson, by permission of the owners of the original manuscript, made the typewritten copy of the original manuscript. Cousins Julia and Mary Faucette have made an incomparable contribu- tion by the preservation of this Diary. Cousin Etta Rosson has done likewise by copying it for us. Immediately following will appear Mrs. Coleman's writings as to the general history of the Coleman family. For those interested in the details of their family lines, we shall include the entire Diary at a later point, referring extensively to the Colemans, Feasters, Moberleys, Colvins, Stevensons, and Yongues. FROM THE DIARY OF MRS. JENNIE I. COLEMAN Feasterville, S. C. Dec. 3d, 1905 Here in the home of my grandfather, Henry A. Coleman, my father, John A. F. Coleman, now my home, and which in time will be the home of my son and only child, John Albert Feaster Coleman, I begin writing some of the history of our family as I know it, with the hope that it will be of interest and a great pleasure to my boy and others of the family when I am gone. Young people do not feel much interest in family history, and old people do not often take the trouble to write down what they know. Consequently, so much is lost to me that I now long to know. While my - 34 - . THE ROBERT COLEMAN FAMILY grandparents were living here in this old home, I could have learned so much, but with the usual thoughtlessness of youth, I didn't know what I.htm#N000702">I was losing. I did take an interest in family history then, and have treasured up in my mind many things I heard them and other old people tell. But much of it lacks something that I very much want to know. They never recorded anything. My father, not a great deal. I have wanted to write what I know a long time, but kept putting it off. Again, I hope this may be of interest to you, John, and others who care for such history, and I want you to keep on with the record. I will begin first with the Colemans. They came from Wales to Virginia. I do not know how long ago. They moved into North Carolina, Halifax County, from which they came to this neighborhood in 1775. There was a large family of them, but I know of only three brothers, Robert, William, and Charles. They soon acquired large tracts of land. Robert, I imagine, was the eldest, and he bought up land that had been granted by King George in 1772 to William Mazyck, also to Joseph Verree, and John Winn, on the headwaters of Beaver Creek. He settled on uncleared land in a quarter of a mile of this home, and lived and died within a mile of the first settlement. He must have had money to have so soon acquired the large area around him. He must have been a man of strong character, and industrious, thrifty habits. His descendants generally have these characteristics, preferring a plain style of living, abhorring show of any kind. He was a Major in the British Army [we have found no documentary proof of this], and I do not know whether he changed before the close of the Revolution. His sons were Whigs. We have a coat of his, in good state of preservation, homespun woven, and made over a hundred years ago. Robert Coleman was born about 1745, and his wife, Elizabeth Roe, was born in I747. They had several children when they came to this State, David Roe Coleman the eldest. As I said, there was a large family of the Colemans, and also the Roes. All settled near here. They found the Wagners, Beams and Mobleys already settled on Beaver Creek. There was intermarriage with these families, which makes me a descendant of them all. The Wagners came from Holland, the Beams from Germany, the Mobleys from England. They were all settled near together on Beaver Creek, several miles below where Robert Coleman settled. They had been here for some time, and had endured the hard life of first settlers, such as Indian foes to dread and conquer. Hans Wagoner had eight daughters, no sons, so a fort, called Fort Wagoner, was built of - 35 - . THE ROBERT COLEMAN FAMILY hewn whiteoak logs, 12 inches square, with a stone wall and deep ditch around it, and the Wagoners lived in the fort because there were no sons to protect this family, and when in danger of Indians, the neighbors gathered in his home for safety and protection for all. There are signs of the ditch around this yet. Must have been made in early part of the 18th century. I have been told that the Mobleys settled there about 1735. Later on, the Hamptons came and tried to run these first settlers off. The Mobleys lived on Poplar Ridge, the Beams, Hickory Flat. The Wagoners just above them on Reedy Branch, in Fort Wagoner. The Hamptons ran the Mobleys off their land. The Beams and Wagoners would not run, and got a grant from King George. Hans Wagoner and wife, Elizabeth Johnson (from Scotland), are buried near where they lived. Sam Mobley married their daughter, Mary, and continued to live on Poplar Ridge (where they are buried). All these old settlements are obliterated and the graves unmarked. (The above was told me by Cousin Trez Feaster) . The Mayos also lived neighbors to the Beams, and they intermarried. I do not know their nationality. Robert Coleman married Elizabeth Roe. Their children: David Roe, 1st son, born in Halifax County, NC, May 19, 1765. John Roe, 2nd son, born in Halifax County, NC, April 2, 1768. Robert Roe, 3rd son, born in Halifax County, NC, February 1, 1769. Wiley Roe, 4th son, born in Halifax County, NC, October 27, 1771. Allen Roe, 5th son, born in Halifax County, NC, November 7, 1773. Griffen Roe, 6th son, born in Fairfield County, SC, May 20, 1775 William Roe, 7th son, born in Fairfield County, SC, March 6, 1776. Sarah Roe, 1st daughter, born in Fairfield County, SC, November 8, 1778. Elizabeth Roe, 2nd daughter, born in Fairfield County, SC, September 8, 1780. Solomon Roe, 8th son, born in Fairfield County, SC, October 29, 1783. - 36 - . THE ROBERT COLEMAN FAMILY Francis Roe, 9th son, born in Fairfield County, SC, July 12, 1786. Zerebable Roe, 10th son, born in Fairfield County, SC, November 28, 1789. Henry Jonathan Roe, 11th son, born in Fairfield County, SC, June 22,1793. Ancil Roe, 12th son, born in Fairfield County, SC, April 22, 1796. Of this large family, three died infants. John, Griffen, William, Francis, and the two sisters went West, first to Greene County, Ala- bama. I know nothing at all about their descendants, except that they went on to Mississippi and Texas. David, Robert, Wiley, Allen, Solo- mon and Henry Jonathan lived and died near by, all marrying and rearing rather large families. Robert Coleman and his wife, Elizabeth, are buried very near where they lived, at what is known as the "Coleman" graveyard. Their small children were the first to be buried there (lie at the foot of parents graves). The first house they built, as near as I can locate it, was on the hill near the Rocky Knoll, above Bonny's Fork Branch. I've heard my grandfather say that when they reached the place to camp (on getting to where they settled) a large chip was cut from a hickory tree, and bread was baked on it for their supper. The fields then cleared have been cultivated most of the time since, and yield fairly good crops. They built another home half mile south of the graveyard; all trace of that is gone. I know living persons, tho, who have been in the last house-Cousins Elitia Coleman Jeffares and Julia Feaster Coleman say they have been in it. I think some parts of it were used in building a home for Cousin David Roe Feaster. Nine years ago we put up a small monument to mark the graves of these two pioneer ancestors, Robert Coleman and Elizabeth Roe. 'Twas paid for by small contributions from many of their descendants to the 7th generation, and from 14 states. I am exceedingly glad that tis done, for I think they deserve to be so remembered. Only one, David Roe, of their grown sons was buried with them. The others who died in this state are buried in family burying grounds near their homes, except Henry Jonathan, who is buried in the Feaster Cemetery by his wife, Polly Feaster. As I said, I've heard of only two brothers of Robert Coleman, and can trace back to them all very well. There was a large family of them, tho', and I see in an old list of Mobley names that several Coleman men and - 37 - . THE ROBERT COLEMAN FAMILY women married Mobleys. I feel sure these were brothers and sisters of Robert Coleman. His brother, Charles, married Polly Mobley. William married Nancy Butler. I will later on tell of their descendants. Francis married Margaret Mobley. OBITUARY OF MRS. JENNIE I. COLEMAN ( 1938) MRS. E. W. COLEMAN Chester, July 9. Funeral services were conducted at the Feasterville Universalist Church Thursday afternoon for Mrs. Jennie I. Coleman, 81, widow of E. W. Coleman, and oldest daughter of the late John A. F. Coleman and Julia Stevenson, who died at the home of her sister, Mrs. Mary Coleman Faucette in Feasterville community late Wednesday. The services were conducted by the pastor. Interment followed in the Coleman burying ground. Six nephews were active pallbearers. Survivors include a step-son, Roe Coleman, Jr. and a granddaughter, Lola Marsh Coleman, both of Winnsboro; one sister, Mrs. Mary C. Faucette; one brother H. D. Coleman, both of the Shelton community and a number of nephews and nieces. Her husband, E. W. Coleman, died in 1917. She was born in the old Coleman homestead. She was a member of the Feasterville Universalist Church.
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