Caswell County Genealogy

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James, Reverend John Joshua

Male 1814 - 1892  (77 years)

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  • Name James, John Joshua 
    Title Reverend 
    Birth 30 Nov 1814  Halifax County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Reference Number 22614 
    Death 6 Apr 1892  Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Burial First Baptist Church of Yanceyville, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I22184  Caswell County
    Last Modified 24 Feb 2024 

    Father Living 
    Relationship natural 
    Family ID F9716  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Mangum, Mary Lucy,   b. 17 Feb 1833, Hillsborough, Orange County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this locationd. 8 Jul 1904, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location (Age 71 years) 
    Marriage 9 Apr 1856  Wake County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Reference Number 279263 
    • Hillsborough Recorder, 23 April 1856 (Vol XXXVI # 1835)
      Married - Rev. J. J. James, editor of the Biblical Recorder,
      to Mary L. (Mangum), daughter of late Priestely H Mangum, near
      Wake Forest College, Wednesday 9th inst [April 1856] by Rev. Jas. S. Purify.
     1. James, Rebecca,   b. Abt 1860, Raleigh, Wake County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this locationd. 4 Aug 1928, Raleigh, Wake County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location (Age ~ 68 years)  [Father: natural]  [Mother: natural]
     2. James, John Mangum,   b. 17 May 1863, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this locationd. 10 Apr 1914, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location (Age 50 years)  [Father: natural]  [Mother: natural]
     3. James, Alice,   b. 2 Jun 1865, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this locationd. 9 Mar 1947 (Age 81 years)  [Father: natural]  [Mother: natural]
     4. James, Leonard,   b. Abt 1869, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  [Father: natural]  [Mother: natural]
     5. James, Frank S.,   b. 14 Dec 1872, Raleigh, Wake County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this locationd. 19 Aug 1932, Danville, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location (Age 59 years)  [Father: natural]  [Mother: natural]
    Family ID F9715  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 24 Feb 2024 

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBirth - 30 Nov 1814 - Halifax County, Virginia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarriage - 9 Apr 1856 - Wake County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDeath - 6 Apr 1892 - Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBurial - - First Baptist Church of Yanceyville, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Documents
    1862 Letter Page #1
    1862 Letter Page #1
    1862 Letter Page #2
    1862 Letter Page #2

    Rev. Joshua John James Death. The Biblical Recorder (Raleigh, NC), 27 April 1892
    Rev. Joshua John James Death. The Biblical Recorder (Raleigh, NC), 27 April 1892

  • Notes 
    • Reverend John Joshua James (1814-1892)

      Rev. J. J. James (1814-1892)

      (for larger image, click on photograph)

      Find A Grave Memorial

      That J. J. James is the husband of Mary Mangum James had not been confirmed and was based solely upon gravestones found in the First Baptist Church of Yanceyville (Caswell County, North Carolina) cemetery. This also was the case with respect to those shown as the children of J. J. James and Mary Mangum James. However, the obituary of Frank S. James supports the relationships shown herein. Also, a Mangum family member has provided Bible records that confirm the marriage between J. J. James and Mary Lucy Mangum.

      Note that there is some uncertainty as to what "J. J." represents. His name is seen as Joseph in one census and John in another. Thus, the name could be John Joseph or Joseph John or contain another name beginning with "J." Note that he named a son John Mangum James. The consensus appears to be John Joshua James.

      However, his 1892 obituary in "The Biblical Recorder" (Raleigh, NC; 27 April 1892) referred to him as "Rev. Joshua John James."

      Apparently was the Corresponding Secretary at the 1848 North Carolina Baptist State Convention at Rockford, Surry County, North Carolina (September 12, 2017). Source: Carolina Watchman (Salisbury, North Carolina), 26 October 1848, Thursday, Page 2. The full article will be found below.

      Trinity Baptist Church historical sketch from Caswell County Historical Association (CCHA):

      In 1840, some residents of southwestern Caswell County left the Yanceyville Baptist Church (Yanceyville, North Carolina) to from the Trinity Baptist Church, which was nearer their homes. Members also came from Wolf Island, Lick Fork, Dan River, Pleasant Grove, and other churches. William Pleasants was the first pastor; Calvin Graves, the first clerk; and Alexis Howard, the first treasurer. Alexis Howard, William Dupree, and John Stamps were elected deacons. Azariah Graves, Alexis Howard, and William Slade were trustees of the church property. Calvin Graves, William Dupree, and Alexis Howard were delegates to the Association held 1840 in Yanceyville. R. W. Lawson offered a site for church and school. In 1842, Zachariah Neal from Bethesda Presbyterian Church joined Trinity Baptist Church and applied for a license to preach, which he received in the fall of 1842.

      Also in the fall of 1842, Trinity, in association with the Yanceyville Baptist Church, called John Joshua James as pastor. The Association was held at Trinity in 1843, and a revival was held in connection with the Association that lasted twenty days. At this time, Judge Thomas Settle made a profession and joined the church on August 13, 1843. About this time, Hosea McNeil made a motion to organize a church at Sycamore Grove near Major Kerr's home. The name of this church eventually was changed to Kerr's Chapel Baptist Church. In 1844, the Milton Baptist Church was organized as an arm of the Yanceyville Baptist Church, and Reverend John Joshua James served three churches. At this time, Thomas Settle was Reverend John Joshua James's assistant and held services at Trinity Baptist Church each month.

      The first Sunday School organized in this section of the state was at Trinity 10 April 1844, with twelve officers and teachers and forty pupils. Many slaves were members of Trinity Baptist Church.

      The Milton Female Institute under the joint control of our Baptist Associations, the Beulah and Flat River in North Carolina and the Roanoke and Dan River in Virginia, was chartered the day before Christmas by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1844. This was a landmark academy for the Baptists, because beginning with it, in the next fourteen years, they founded and maintained more than a dozen such academies, one or more in every section of the state. The trustees, not all of whom were Baptists, named in the act of the legislature was, among many others, Joshua J. James and his relative (by marriage) Willie P. Mangum. A number of the trustees lived outside Caswell County, but they helped establish and support the Milton school. The institute opened on January 1, 1845. In 1849 the charter of the Milton Female Institute was amended to establish a male classical institute in Milton, too. This became the Beulah Baptist Male Institute but it was moved in the summer of 1857 to the centrally located town of Madison, merging the school with another one of the same denomination that was already there.

      Source: When the Past Refused to Die: A History of Caswell County North Carolina 1777-1977, William S. Powell (1977) at 368-369.

      In 1844, the Biblical Recorder wrote:

      "The arm or branch of the Baptist Church of Yanceyville, located in Milton, N.C. was constituted into a separate and independent church on the Saturday before the fifth Sunday in the last month (June 1844) by the Presbytery of the Beulah Association. Elder S. Pleasant acted as Moderator. The examination was conducted by Elder G. W. Purefoy assisted by other members of the Presbytery. The right hand of fellowship was given by the Moderator and the charge to members by Elder J. Bradley of Virginia, late president of Newton College. Concluding prayer by Elder E. Dodson.

      "On Sunday the Communion was administered to about thirty communicants. The sermons on both days were very solemn and interesting, and were attended by a crowded audience on Sunday. The building occupied by the new church is a neat little house, sufficiently large and well arranged, with a good bell; and the prospects of building a good church is promising. Elder Joshua J. James is pastor."

      Source: Milton Baptist Church (Caswell County, North Carolina).

      Caswell County Attendees at North Carolina Baptist State Convention: Calvin Graves, Nathaniel Jones Palmer, Reverend John Joshua James. Note that the next meeting was to be held in Milton, Caswell County, North Carolina.

      Carolina Watchman (Salisbury, North Carolina), 26 October 1848, Thursday, Page 2.

      The Papers of Willie P. Mangum. Vol. 5, 1847-1894,

      Page 208, "...Is a Circular Oxford Female College (May 1851)"...this printed circular states that "this institution is located at Oxford, Granville County...." "Oxford Female College was established by the Baptist in 1851 but because of debts it was sold to J. H. Mills in 1859."

      Page 210, "By order of the Board. J. J. James, President."

      At the bottom of page 210, (20), J. J. James married Mary L. Mangum, the daughter of Priestly H. Mangum. For several years James was editor of the the Biblical Recorder. Weeks, "Willie Person Mangum, Jr.," Biog. Hist. of N.C. V, 258

      He became editor of the Biblical Recorder in 1854.

      Ironically, a delegate to the May 1867 meeting of the North Carolina Baptist State Convention, Rev. J. J. James, said, "We shall have a mighty struggle in this Southern country with the Catholics. No denomination can consistently oppose the Catholics but the Baptists. All others are founded, in part, on tradition." Religious Herald, 30 May 1867, 2.

      Thomas Meredith (1795-1850) was arguably the most important leader among North Carolina Baptists during the first half of the nineteenth century. During his almost thirty years in North Carolina, Meredith pastored two churches on the East Coast, assisted in the formation of the state convention in 1830, and helped charter Wake Forest College in 1834. Despite these accomplishments, perhaps Meredith’s most important contribution to North Carolina Baptists was the Biblical Recorder, the religious periodical he founded in 1834 and edited for over fifteen years. The periodical served the Baptists of North Carolina (and for a time South Carolina) as an unofficial denominational organ, shaping Baptist theology, piety, and identity, as well as fostering interchurch cooperation.

      That the following letter was authored by the John Joshua James of this entry has not been confirmed:

      1862 Slave Letter
      December 24, 1862
      Messrs. McGee & Williams

      Dear Sirs:

      I drop you a line about the negroes I now have in Raleigh, which you will oblige me by arranging as follows: Armstead can go on as heretofore per monthly payments. It seems that he ought to return $15 per month instead of $12 as money is less valuable and more easily made. The price of negro hire however should determine what is right for him to pay. I think it best for you to let Friday keep Millie and the three girls now with her if he will pay their hire monthly until I make a more permanent arrangement. For more than one reason I do not wish to hire them out by the year. Friday wanted me to make an arrangement with him shen I was down but I declined to make any.

      In case it should become necessary for me to remove them out of the way of the Yankees, I don't wish any hinderance and should you judge such a measure judicious at any future time please let me know know but say nothing to Friday or any of the others about it as I have not much confidence in his fidelity.

      I thought Calvin Rogers hired the oldest girl the past year, but it turns out that Friday really hired her and her mother and two little ones. The notes for this year's hire I left with you. When paid you can remit by check the price of the woman and her three children per month you can fix according to the hire of other negroes. If Friday won't take them and pay monthly, please let me know and I will make other arrangements.

      Let the negroes know that I put them under your control. See if they are well clad. I got all my furniture with but little damage. Glass and crockery not broken at all.

      I am glad to hear that the Yankees who threaten Goldsboro have take the back track.

      With the compliments of the season I remain as ever,

      Yours Truly,

      J. J. James

      PS If Mr Williams is as I suppose from home, Mr. McGee will be so good as to attend to the above. Enclosed is a note for Mr. Jas. King which please hand him or his father first opportunity. If Mr. J. King applies please hand him five dollars for me and charge to my account and oblige. JJJ

      Yanceyville Baptists Have New Building

      Baptists of Yanceyville entered their new church building for the first time on March 25 [1951], Easter Sunday. The structure is one of which the congregation is justly proud. It is of red brick veneer construction. The auditorium, with extra chairs, can seat 500 people, and under it is a full basement recreation room.

      The educational part of the building is of two-story construction and contains departments for each of the Sunday school divisions, including a nursery. The educational unit can acommodate 500 people. Connecting with the recreation room is a fully equipped kitchen. Some 250 persons can be served at one time in the recreation dining room.

      All windows in the building were donated as memorials, as were a goodly number of the pews, pulpit stand, table, and desk for pastor's study.

      The young people's department is to be named in honor of the Poteat family. The Poteat children and grandchildren made substantial donations for this purpose. (Dr. William Louis Poteat, Dr. Edwin McNeill Poteat, and Miss Ida Poteat, all so well known among Baptists, were reared in the old home at Yanceyvill.)

      The First Baptist Church of Winston-Salem gave $1,000 in honor of Dr. H. A. Brown, who was ordained in Yanceyville Church. The pastor's study is being named in his honor.

      Many members made great sacrifices to effect the completion of the new building, so many that it would be impossible to name them all. A few who can be named for special services are the pastor, W. T. Baucom, who made untiring efforts to raise money; E. O. Foster, chairman of the building committee, who gave hours of labor and sacrifice in keeping the construction going; and A. H. Motz, who handled the money faithfully and conscientiously from the beginning in the completion of the program.

      The Yanceyville Church has an interesting history. From an article written by R. S. Graves [Robert Sterling Graves], which appeared in the Caswell Messenger on June 24, 1926, we learn that the church was organized in 1840 and the first building was erected in 1841 on a lot donated by Col. Thomas Graves of Georgia, probably a former resident of Caswell County. The deed, dated 1839, was made to the first trustees, Thomas W. Graves, Jeremiah Graves, Phillip Hodnett, and Calvin Graves.

      Members of the church were formerly connected with a church known as Country Line Church, situated in the same general vicinity. There were arguments as to church doctrines and policies affecting missionary work, ministerial education, etc., and the congretation was divided.

      Among the early pastors, prior to the Civil War, was Mr. Tobey, an able preacher and scholarly gentleman. His wife was buried in the church cemetery. Mr. Mason, who was pastor in 1860 and some years after, married and baptized most of the parents of the present generation. He baptized both white and colored members, as both races belonged to the same church.

      Like many of the churches of that time, the building originally had galleries at the side and to the rear and the colored members, all slaves, worshipped in the galleries. During the pastorate of Mr. Murchison 1911-1918, the galleries were taken down, the building was remodeled, and a large Sunday school room erected, almost doubling the seating capacity.

      Among the former pastors named by Mr. Graves [Robert Sterling Graves] are: F. H. Jones, J. J. James, J. R. Jones, Mr. Chappell, C. A. G. Thomas, S. B. Wilson, O. A. Keller, D. W. Overby, M. C. Murchison, J. A. Hackney, R. W. Prevost, and C. W. Hood, who was pastor at the time the article was written [24 June 1926]. Mr. Hood resigned in December, 1927, and the next June P. T. Worrell was called. He served until May, 1944, and in December, 1944, the present pastor, W. H. Baucom, was called. He began his work in 1945. The plans for a new building were first projected about 1940, but the fund grew slowly at first. Mr. Baucom worked energetically at increasing the fund, and by the end of 1950 there was $42,185.00 on hand. Work was begun in March 1950, and completed in time for the first service on March 25, 1951. Total cost of the building, including $15,000 borrowed and labor and material donated, is estimated at $72,000.

      R. S. Graves, who wrote the article about the early history of the church, served as clerk from May 1897, until January, 1935. P. F. Sutton succeeded him and served until January, 1946. Since that time S. H. Abell has been clerk.

      Source: Article dated 19 May 1951 (may have been published in the Biblical Recorder).

      North Carolina Baptist State Convention: 1848

      This body assembled at Rockford, Surry County, N.C., on Thursday the 12th instant [October 12, 1848], and adjourned on the Monday following. The Hon. Alfred Dockery of Richmond County, was re-elected President; Rev. D. S. Williams, Hon. Calvin Graves and Dr. G. C. Moore, Vice Presidents; N. J. Palmer, of Milton, Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary.

      A numerous delegation were in attendance from different parts of the State, and much harmony and good feeling characterized its deliberations. The next session is to be held in Oxford, N. C., commencing on Thursday before the third Sabbath in October, 1849.

      Among other measures adopted, was a resolution recommending the establishment of a Male and Female Classical Institute in the town of Rockford, which was followed by a meeting of the citizens and friends of the object, and the appointment of a Board of Trustees, composed of the most respectable citizens in that section of the State. Much interest was manifested in the enterprise.

      A resolution was adopted requesting the members representing the county of Surry in the ensuing Legislature to procure a charter for the Institution. A general meeting of the Board is to be held in Rockford on the 17th of November, to adopt measures to carry the School into operation, by employment of competent instructors, &c.

      Rev. William Jones was appointed General Agent of the Convention.

      The following appointments for the ensuing year, made by the Board of the Convention, were approved.

      Rev. Elias Dodson, Missionary for the Beulah Association. Rev. Richard Jacks, for the Liberty Association. Rev. Samuel P. Smith for the Briar Creek Association, Rev. John Robertson to the counties of Rockingham, Guilford, Stokes and Surry. Rev. N. A. Purify to the towns of Salisbury, Mocksville, Lexington, and Statesville. Rev. J. J. James, Greensborough station.

      Other appointments will probably be made at the meeting of the Board to be held in Milton, N.C., on Friday the 24th of November next.

      Carolina Watchman (Salisbury, North Carolina), 26 October 1848, Thursday, Page 2.

      Those Mentioned with Caswell County Connections

      Calvin Graves
      N. J. Palmer
      Elias Dodson
      J. J. James

      1860 United States Federal Census
      Name: J J James
      Age in 1860: 45
      Birth Year: abt 1815
      Birthplace: Virginia
      Home in 1860: Raleigh, Wake, North Carolina
      Gender: Male
      Post Office: Raleigh
      Occupation: Editor and Minister
      Value of Real Estate: $6,000
      Value of Personal Property: $11,000
      Household Members: Name Age
      J J James 45
      Mary James 26
      Rebecca James (one month old)

      1870 United States Federal Census
      Name: Joshua James
      Estimated Birth Year: abt 1815
      Age in 1870: 55
      Birthplace: Virginia
      Home in 1870: Dan River, Caswell, North Carolina
      Race: White
      Gender: Male
      Post Office: Yanceyville
      Household Members: Name Age
      Joshua James 55
      Mary James 37
      Rebecca James 10
      John James 7
      Anny James 4
      Lin James 1

      1880 United States Federal Census
      Name: John James
      Home in 1880: Dan River, Caswell, North Carolina
      Age: 65
      Estimated Birth Year: abt 1815
      Birthplace: Virginia
      Relation to Head of Household: Self (Head)
      Spouse's Name: Mary
      Father's birthplace: Virginia
      Mother's birthplace: Virginia
      Occupation: Farmer
      Marital Status: Married
      Race: White
      Gender: Male
      Household Members: Name Age
      John James 65
      Mary James 46
      Bebecka James 19
      John James 17
      Annie James 12
      Leonard James 11
      Frank James 7
      Annie Bowe 60