Sunday’s Obituary: Dorcas Elizabeth Carter

Sunday’s Obituary – if you have obituaries of family members and ancestors, consider posting them along with other information about that person as part of Sunday’s Obituary. This is an ongoing series developed by Leslie Ann at Ancestors Live Here.
Obituary as posted in the Sun Journal, New Bern, North Carolina
Dorcas Elizabeth Carter, 96, passed away peacefully on Saturday, June 26, 2009, at Commonwealth Assisted Living in Hampton, Virginia.

Dorcas was the only daughter of five children born in New Bern to Sylvester W. and Olivia Martin Carter. After graduating from West Street High School, “Honey” as she was affectionately called, continued her education at State Normal School, Elizabeth City. She earned her BS degree in Elementary Education from Winston Salem Teachers College and Master’s degree in Elementary Education from Boston University. With 39 years of distinctive service, she retired from F. R. Danyus School in New Bern.

She was a lifetime and dedicated member of St Peter’s A.M.E. Zion Church, serving in many capacities. Her ability to console and mentor others was shared freely, including her services as a Gray Lady at Craven County Hospital. Dorcas was an avid historian of local events. In 2001, she was interviewed by The News & Observer to give her account of the Great Fire of 1922. She was also the source of ancestral information regarding her family on Portsmouth Island in the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

Preceded in death by her brothers, Caswell, Robert and Sylvester, Honey leaves to cherish her loving memory a brother and sister-in-law, James “Rudy” and Celestine Carter (Hampton, VA); sisters-in-law, Mary G. Carter (Raleigh ) and Ruth P. Carter (Riverside, Calif.); seven nieces, three nephews and many great nieces, great nephews, cousins, neighbors and friends.

A graveside service will be held at noon on Thursday, July 2, 2009, at Evergreen Cemetery with the Rev. Joseph C. George officiating. Viewing will be held from noon to 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 1, 2009, and family visitation and viewing will be held from 10 a.m. to 11:40 a.m. Thursday, July 2, 2009, at Rivers-Morgan Funeral Home, Inc., 701 West Street, New Bern.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be made to St. Peter’s A.M.E. Zion Church, 617 Queen Street, New Bern, North Carolina.
Arrangements are by Rivers-Morgan Funeral Home, Inc.

According to my family tree on ancestry Ms. Dorcas Elizabeth Carter would be the stepdaughter of  my 1st cousin 2x removed.  

Treasure Chest Thursday:The Unexpected

Yesterdays post was a post about Wordless Wednesday where I posted about High School of Commerce, Worcester, MA and posted a picture of my Great Uncle, Wendell Culley.  Check out the post….(Wordless Wednesday 8/10/2011).

I ordered the 1925 School Year Book of High School of Commerce so that I could get a good scan of the pictures that my Great Uncle was in, and so that I could have an original copy of the Annual..(What Value!).  Well when I opened the book it had a very strong odor to it, as if it had been kept in a dark, damp room.  So as I went page by page reading and looking at each picture, I noticed that there were no African Americans that attended the school, or at least not from Wendell’s 1925 graduating class.  Almost at the center of the book a photo fell out.  It was a picture of a young girl that most likely attended the school, and probably had been the prior owner of the school annual.  (I thought, “I will keep this.”  Why not?”)

Photo Found in 1925 Commerce Annual

Then as I went through the annual, I decided to scan the one’s that had Wendell in them.  He did not take a  solo picture as I have been told, he did not like taking pictures…but he did with his School Band and Cross Country Team.

Wendell P Culley
Only Black in Band
Wendell P Culley
Back row & Center
Wendell P Culley
Back Row, Far Left

Then as I was going through the pages of the annual and a portion of the Commerce High School newspaper that had been folded up fell out.    I had pages 7-18.  So as I started reading “The Mercury” Newspaper, I came across two items that interested me.  One was a “Funnies by Funny Commerce Artists,” and an article that listed Wendell Cully as the leader of the Commerce High School Band, a fact that I had no way of knowing.

Black Face Character in “The Mercury” Newspaper at Commerce HS 1925

This cartoon I didn’t get at first until I read it to my daughter, and then I was like, “Oh, I get it now!”  This was 1925, and the ideas and the stereotypes of who and what Black People (Negroes, Coloreds) were are evident in this clipping by a student.  Now it makes me wonder why my Great Uncle did not have his Graduating Class Picture taken for the year book.  I also wondered how he felt being the only Black in his school, and if he had to deal with racism while he was there.

I knew Wendell Culley was a leader and before his time and here is insight by the clipping below, which I find to be a treasure.

Wendell Cully listed as Leader, Solo Cornet in Commerce H.S. Band, 1925

I knew Wendell played the Cornet, but he is known for his trumpet.  Wow!  I tell you, if you listen to your impulses while researching your family history, your Ancestors will guide you and speak to you.

The material, both written and photographic on these pages is the copyright of Yvette Porter Moore unless stated. Material on this site may be used for personal reference only. If you wish to use any of the material on this site for other means, please seek the written permission of Yvette Porter Moore
© 2010-2011

Talented Tuesday: Christine Gilliard Culley

Christine G. Culley
Photo by DeLaigle, (Harlem)
I am highlighting Christine G. Culley, who is the daughter of the trumpet player, Wendell Phillip Culley.  Christine was born January 3, 1930 in Manhattan, New York and died September 1, 2009.  
I went to New York June 8, 2010, and had not realized she died.  She had become a recluse, and frankly had no contact with any surviving family members of her generation or after.  I thought I would go to Harlem and get the stories about her father, who happened to play for Count Basie in the 50’s, Cab Calloway, Lionel Hampton, and appeared in over 200 recordings of some of the great artists and musicians.
Christine was born, grew up, took care of her mother Violet, and grew old in the same apartment her parents got married in.  She remained in that home for 79 years.  My trip to her apartment in Harlem was not necessarily successful as she had passed but I was able to get in touch with the owner, who in turn connected me with Christine’s friend, that handled her final affairs.  
The connection to Christine’s friend (Karen) gave me some answers as to who Christine was.  Christine was my mother’s first cousin, and they grew up together, and were probably pretty close until my mother and grandmother moved to Los Angeles, CA.  
Karen was most helpful in giving me what she had regarding Christine.  All of Christine’s things were donated to thrift stores, and organizations that Christine was interested in.  What Karen did have that was somewhat of a consolation, was photo’s of paintings that Christine did.  Christine was a Teacher at New York University (NYU) for many years and had many of her art pieces.  I have been on a hunt for them, and was able to recover four paintings, that I hope one day, will find their place in the homes of our relatives.
I am only posting a few of her paintings below:
Abstract Painting by Christine G. Culley
(Recovered & in my home) 1970
Painting sold in an Auction
by Christine G. Culley

The material, both written and photographic on these pages is the copyright of Yvette Porter Moore unless stated. Material on this site may be used for personal reference only. If you wish to use any of the material on this site for other means, please seek the written permission of Yvette Porter Moore
© 2010-2011

Daily Journal: Cully Family Genealogy

Edgecombe, Sugar Hill, NY APT building Grandparents lived  in 1920’s

Today took a very interesting and a welcoming change in my Research, Writing, and Blogging.

I have finally realized I cannot do another thing until I organize my years of printing and saving documents.

Over the next few months, I am going to be organizing, sorting, scanning, filing, all of my Family Research information.  I have been researching the Cully Family since 2004 electronically and have not done the documentation required to keep up with the material or at least share it with individuals such as Debra Newton-Carter and Michaud Robinson who have interest in my papers as we both have family connections.

I have been doing Family  Search and Research in general since I was 18 years old in 1986.  I did not know there was a name for it until the year 2000. 

Since I have been researching the Cully Family, my Goal is to write two books within the next few years.  They are: The Cully Family: An African American Story and Embraced Identity.

I want to personally thank Debra Newton-Carter of In Black and White: Cross-Cultural Genealogy.  She has agreed to help with some of the documents and put them in some type of order so that I may focus more on my writing.

© Yvette Porter Moore-All Rights Reserved

Family Connections

Johnny, Ermalinda, Herlinda, Tori

I am taking the Weekend off to spend some time with my Mother Ermalinda Espinoza, my daughter Victoria, and my siblings Johnny and Herlinda Mitchell.  We will be in the Long Beach, CA area…

Johnny, Me, Ermalinda, Herlinda

© Yvette Porter Moore-All Rights Reserved