Flowers

Ginny's mother is Evelyn Gertrude Flowers. She says her family came from Fremont, a town a few miles north of Goldsboro in northern Wayne County, North Carolina.

There is a large and well known Flowers family in eastern North Carolina, and the genealogy of this family is thoroughly documented. The family originated in southeastern Virginia and moved to Wayne and neighboring counties before the Revolution. I assumed Ginny would have a clear descent from this family, but she does not.

7 Sarah Flowers, Sr. was most likely born around 1770. I believe she was the widow of the William Flowers who appears on the 1810 census in Duplin County, North Carolina; if so, she had a young son and two young daughters at that time. Apparently William Flowers died within a few years; the 1820 census returns for Duplin show Sally Flowers with the son only. She is listed on the 1830 census for Wayne County, aged 60-70, living in a household whose only other member is a male in his 20s. In 1840 she appears to be living with Sarah, Jr. Apparently she had died by 1850.

6 Sarah (Sally) Flowers, Jr. was born about 1792 in Virginia, not North Carolina, according to the 1850 census. She also appears on the 1830 census for Wayne County, aged 30-40, in a household with three children. She was probably daughter of Sarah Sr., or possibly her daughter-in-law. In 1840 she appears as Sally Flowers; her household includes five children, three of them under the age of five, plus a woman aged 60-70, probably Sarah Sr. There is no sign of a husband in either 1830 or 1840; given the youth of her children it seems almost certain that Sally Flowers was never married. In the 1850s Sally's family was living in Fremont, where the principal employer was a distillery owned by W.W. Barnes. In 1854, Sally's daughter Matilda married Robert Howell, a cooper at the distillery, in a ceremony held in Sally's house. Matilda's daughter Barbara Flowers, born three years earlier, might have been the flower girl, and Matilda's younger sister Penelope, then 19, might have been maid of honor. In addition to Matilda and Penelope, she seems to have had an older daughter Polly, who was absent in 1850 but rejoined the family in 1860. (Sally also had three boys in her house in 1840, but if any survived they had left by 1850 and we know nothing of them.) Sally continued to appear as head of the Flowers household in 1860 and in 1870, listing her birthplace as Virginia each time. She was 78 in 1870 and did not live to the next census.

5 Penelope (Penny) Flowers was born about 1835. We have no idea who her father was. She was never married, but she had at least five children. It appears that around 1852, when she was about 17, she began a relationship with Jesse Charles Rose, who was then about 21. He was from Nash County and had come to Fremont to work as an overseer at the distillery. They had two sons John and William, born in 1853 and 1856, respectively. Penelope then broke up with Rose and started a new relationship with Peter Parks. Her son Dallas was born in 1859 and daughters Susan and Ida in 1862 and 1866, respectively. On August 9, 1861, Penny went to the county courthouse and secured what was called a bastardy bond, in which she swore that Jesse Charles Rose was a father to her children. The purpose of the bastardy bond was to secure his children's right to support from Rose, if anything should happen to Penny while they were still minors. It appears that Penny was forced to secure the bond because Rose was about to marry Delphia Barnes and leave the community. (Jesse and Delphia had eleven children and Rose went on to become a pillar of the community, serving as an elder in the Free Will Baptist Church. Genealogies of the Rose family do not mention his relationship to Penelope Flowers.) On August 18, 1866, Penny stated on Ida's birth certificate that she had been living with Parks for eight years. Apparently he left soon after; the 1870 census shows him farming with several other family members, and Penny had no more children that we know of after 1866. By 1870 Penny, her mother Sally, and her older sister Polly (who also had several children and no husband) had left Fremont for a farm in the Great Swamp township a few miles away in northwestern Wayne County. They were still there in 1880, although Sally had died. In 1910, Penny Flowers was still alive and head of household in Wayne County, living with her daughter Susan and two grandchilden.

4 Andrew Dallas Flowers, who was probably the only son of Penelope Flowers and Peter Parks, was born in Fremont on August 18, 1859. He was known by his middle name Dallas all his life. Sometime around 1884 he married Ellen Ward, a daughter of Richard Ward of Fremont. I don't know what happened then. Family tradition is that Dallas and Ellen lived for a time near Semora in Caswell County northwest of Durham. Dallas worked as a supervisor for the Atlantic and Danville Railroad, which ran through Semora on its way from Norfolk to Danville. In 1900, Dallas was the station master for the A&D at Milton, also in Caswell County. Later he was apparently at Boydton, Virginia, because his son Enoch's obituary says Enoch "attended schools in Caswell Co, NC and Boydton." By 1910 they were in Lawrenceville, Virginia, another A&D stop, with six children. Dallas died in Lawrenceville December 13, 1934.

3 Enoch Dorron Flowers, Sr. was born in Semora, North Carolina (according to Evelyn's recollection) on December 5, 1888. He married Elizabeth Leigh Michael on September 4, 1911. The marriage was in Halifax, North Carolina, strongly suggesting that Enoch and Bessie Leigh had eloped across the state line. They had a daughter, Evelyn, and a son, Enoch Dorron Jr. A third child, Dorothy, died as an infant. Enoch worked for the Atlantic and Danville, which sent him at least twice to Norfolk. He was in Norfolk when Evelyn was born in 1913, but the family was back in Lawrenceville, living with Bessie Leigh's parents, in 1920. In 1930 they were again in Norfolk, with Enoch describing himself as Chief Clerk of the railroad. Sometime in the late 1930s he moved to Richmond and took a job with the Southern Railroad. Enoch was always active in the Masonic organization, and he rose through the Masonic hierarchy to become Grand Master of Virginia in 1950. After his retirement from the Southern Railroad in 1948, Enoch returned to Lawrenceville as station master for the A&D. He and Bessie Leigh lived at 410 Park Street in Lawrenceville, and Enoch died there on December 12, 1952.

2 Evelyn Gertrude Flowers, Ginny's mother and the oldest child of Enoch and Bessie Leigh Flowers, was born in Norfolk July 19, 1913. She graduated from Maury High School, also in Norfolk, in 1930. She married William A. Bowers in Richmond September 14, 1941. For many years she worked as the secretary to the the editor of the Virginia Methodist Advocate. She retired in 1976.