Posts tagged ‘South Carolina’

April 14, 2012

Is Levina or Lavicy Our James’s Mother?

While looking through old Cincinnati directories, I came across an 1819 entry for Mrs. Lavicy Wakefield living in Cincinnati on Second Street between Sycamore and Broadway. I do not know much about Lavicy other than what I have found in this directory.

1819 Farnsworth Cincinnati Directory 151

It is possible that this is the mother of James Wakefield, b. 1803 in SC? There is a probate entry from 1819 that states James Wakefield, 16, chooses mother Levina Wakefield, guardian.

Abstracts of Book 1 & Book A Probate Record 1791 – 1826 – OH – Hamilton County

Could Levina and Lavicy be the same person? Is this our James Wakefield? There is a good chance it is our James Wakefield as I suspect he was in Cincinnati by this time and he would have been 16 in 1819. Why was he choosing his mother as guardian? Was his mother and father divorcing? I doubt it. Was his father deceased? Possibly. Not really sure what to make of these entries and if they are related.

March 17, 2012

The Lost Shirley Family Cemetery

From my notes during a research trip to South Carolina a few years ago.

According to a brief reference to the family cemetery in my research material, I set out Tuesday morning to try and locate the cemetery. The cemetery is located on what was an old Shirley family farm behind what once was the house that was on the property. The farm was located on Branyon road just west of the Keowee Church and resides about 1 mile south of the church.

I spoke with a few homeowners in the area and a couple of them remember the cemtery being there but were unsure where it was located. After about an hour of talking to homeowners in the area and searching the property I finally found the cemetery after finding a chain link fence with a gate that was obscured by hay bails. In the cemetery I found several headstones but they were in very, very poor condition. Only one, Nathaniel Shirley, was in good shape and could be read. It was great to find it but any hopes of learning more about the family members buried there is long gone.

September 13, 2009

1776 $5 bill signed by James Wakefield

While living in South Bend, Indiana, I had the opportunity to purchase a $5 colonial bill bearing the signature of James Wakefield. With financial assistance from my uncle, Jeff Wakefield, and my mother, Sally (Wakefield) Meziere, I was able to purchase the December 26, 1776 South Carolina bill for our Wakefield collection. The bill is in mint condition and bears the signature of just James Wakefield. Since it takes five signatures for a bill to be fully issued this bill never made it into circulation.

While investigating the authenticity of the bill I came across the University of Notre Dame’s website on colonial currency. The website discusses the Wakefield signed bills and shows several examples of bills in various denominations. I met with the Louis Jordan, the director of the Department of Special Collections at Notre Dame, and he personally verified the authenticity of the bill and stated that it was in exceptional condition.

Our Wakefield Bill’s Front

Our Wakefield Bill’s Back


Needless to say this is a prized piece of our Wakefield collection and one that will be cherished for years to come. More information on James Wakefield to come in future posts.

September 11, 2009

Accidental Death of James Wakefield in 1876

This article is from the Thursday, October 26, 1876 edition of the Vevay Reveille.

James Wakefield was born January 15, 1803 in South Carolina and died, apparently, on October 21, 1876 at the age of 73. He married Elizabeth Ann Jones sometime prior to 1827 in the state of Ohio and migrated to Switzerland County, IN in the 1840s. James and Eliza were the parents of Robert Washington, Jacob J., Rebecca Ann, Evaline A., and Thomas T. Wakefield.