Tuesday, April 4, 2017

#AtoZChallenge - D is for DUNSTON

D is for DUNSTON!
Today is Day 4 of the A-Z Challenge, and I'm dedicating it to my DUNSTON ancestors, of Franklin County, NC. Everything I know about my Dunstons has come through my research; I've never met any of my relatives from this branch.

The Dunstons were free people of color, who are said to have descended from one Patience Dunston, who is mentioned in Paul Heinegg's book, Free African Americans of Virginia, North Carolina, and Maryland. 

Because I am away from home, and from my regular computer, I'm going to cheat a little here by sharing an link to the page in Heinegg's book:  http://www.freeafricanamericans.com/Driggers_Dutchfield.htm



So, this is my line of descent from Patience DUNSTAN. I have done significant research on this line, but it mostly amounts to names and dates, with a few apprentice bonds, bastardy bonds, and military records here and there. I've met some other Dunston descendants from the area, but so far none of us are matching each other on DNA, and we have different names on our trees, so I guess not all Dunstons are connected, as we'd previously thought.

To make matters a bit confusing, I also descend from another line of Franklin County DUNSTONS! This is because my second great-grandfather, Wilson "Wills" Dunston, married another Dunston, Laura, who was the daughter of Simon Dunston and Susan REED. Here's that line:


The only photo I've ever seen of one of my direct Dunston ancestors is this one of my 3x ggrandmother, Laura Dunston. I've had it restored, but I don't have a copy of that with me (on vacation). I will update the photo on a later date. :)
Laura Dunston (June 17, 1846 - March 28, 1920)

From an article written by Maury York for the Tar River Roots publication, I have this excerpt:
"As in other areas of eastern North Carolina, most free blacks in Franklin County worked on farms, but few owned land.
Farmers in 1850 included members of the Anderson, Dunce, Dunston, Fog and Mitchell families.
Quite a few craftsmen, however, contributed to the local economy.
These included carpenters Leonidas Anderson, Henry and James Dunston, and John Fog. John Mitchell built coaches, and several members of the Dunston family worked as blacksmiths."
I've also been told that Simon Dunston was responsible for a lot of the stonework found in the city of Raleigh, NC but I haven't further researched this.
I may add more to this post, but for now that's all, folks!

Renate

Source info: 
Heinegg, Paul. Free African Americans of Maryland and Delaware from the Colonial Period to 1810. Baltimore, MD, USA: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2000.

York, Maury http://www.louisburg.edu/tarrivercenter/freeblacks.html Published in the Franklin Times newspaper, August 15, 2013.



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