My name Is Mickey Carter, I'm going to add something here that is
information given to me about the Chavis Family. The reason why they
migrated was to find work, they worked cutting trees until the work ran out,
by that time they found themselves in Florida.
THE CHAVIS FAMILY, THEIR MIGRATION AND THE CROATAN
The migration of Cain and Isabella Carter Chavis' family begain sometime
after 1891 from Robeson County NC. The couples first child, Rufus
Doc(D.R.) was born around 1884 in NC. While still in NC. records show their
second son Thomas David was born about 1886, their two daugthers, Mary L.
thrid born around 1888 and fourth born Frances A. (Teal) around 1890.
Their fifth child, Stephen M. born about 1891. By about 1895 the family had
journeyed as far as Fitzgerald, Georgia where their sixth child, a boy Troy R.
was born. In 1898 their seventh child, Annie Bell was born. Still in Georgia,
Lola Bell, number eight, was born around 1899.
What has been the most interesting discovery while tracing the family's
history was that Cain and Isabella with their eight children in June 1900
were listed on the Indian Population Census in Crenshaw County, Alabama
as Croatan Indians? They had for what ever reason left their homeland of
Robeson County, NC. and were in search of a new home. While in Alabama
the ninth child, Kenneth and tenth child George were born. By May 1910 the
family had arrived in Florida, living in Pine Level, Santa Rosa County.
Kenneth is shown to be eight, which would mean he was born around 1902,
other records indicate 1904. George is listed as six years old, placeing his year
of birth around 1904. The eleventh and last child born was William Oscar.
There is some discrepancy in the records in that he was supposedly born
around 1909 in Andulusia, Alabama, but he is not listed on the 1910 census
when the family is in Florida.
On October 26, 1914, Cain and Isabella filed court documents at the Santa
Rosa County, Florida, clerk of the court,Book E, Page 330, in reference to
exempting property as a homestead. The land consisted of 80 acres located in
section 20 in Township 5 North, of range 29 West, Santa Rosa County,
Florida. Cain was a farmer and obviously with eleven children Isabella was a
very busy homemaker.
Cain and Isabella are buried in the Cora Cemetery in Jay, Florida. Cain lived
to be around 67 years old Cain died on April 19, 1923. Isabella lived to be
around 88 years old. Isabella died August 16, 1948. At the time of her death
she was living with her son Kenneth at 1115 E. Jordan Street, Pensacola,
Escambia County Florida.
If only we could have gotten an oral history of their lives. The stories about
their migration across several states to find a new home, reasons for leaving
Robeson County and leaving their Indian heritage behind, Struggles of a
large family and how they lived each day? Even without the Chavis oral
history, the documented history leads us to believe they lived very full,
challenging and eventful lives!
This was submitted to me by Steven and Cherie Gurley members of the Cain
and Isabella Carter Chavis Family
Neil "Chavis" Smith and Levoghn Chavis, children of Thomas David Chavis
and Bertha Mae "Nowling" Chavis
Betty Mitchell Busch, daugther of Dorothy Mae "Chavis" Mitchell
Dorothy is the daugther of Thomas David Chavis and Bertha Mae Nohling