Joy, after posting the info on Henry Manuel sons George, Henry and Brittian, I found the original copies of the article on Uncle Billie Whitley being 112 years old that was first published in our local papers and was picked up by the Atlanta Constitution. I will place all three news paper articles on the bottom of this page. I posted that the first article talked of "Uncle Billie's" father-in-law Henry Manuel but I was wrong on that.
The 1830 Montgomery Co. NC census list Brittain Manuel ; one male between 20 and 30, with a wife the same. Also they have two females less than 5 years. In the 1840 census Brittain is between 30 and 40 with a son less than 10. He also has four females. two less than 5 years and two between 10 and 15. No wife listed. Brittain does not appear in the 1850 census of Stanly Co. NC. This shows that Brittain lost his wife between 1830 and 1840.
I got the name Susan Mitchell from the Daughters of Republic of Texas, Volume 1
page 182. The 1840 Stanly Co. NC deed (that I have a copy) from Mathias Mitchellstates"for love and affection that I have for Brittian Manuel" This seems to me to go along with the DRT book. By that I would think that Susan was the (late) daughter of Mathias Mitchell ( age at least 70 per census) that was giving his property to his son-in- law (and grandchildren)to provide for him in his old age. This happened quite often. There are many mistakes in the DRT article, 1st. Henry Manuel Senior the father of Brittain Manuel is listed in the 1800 Montgomery Co. Census as over 45 years therefore born before 1755. He was not killed at Cowpens. The battle of Cowpens was fought 17 Jan 1781. No one killed at the battle of Cowpens on 17 Jan 1781 had a son born in 1802.2nd. "Nickname Brittain " ? Who records a nickname of a child?Where was it recorded or used that a nickname was ever put on paper ? This is all nonsense besides Brittain was born 1802. 3rd. I have no idea where the initials A. E. came from. His name is Brittain Manuel on a Deed, on the Census and on the tax records. I have never seen the use of A.E. Manuel.
I hope this helps. John H. Burleson Stanly Co. NC
Published Daily and Weekly ---- Atlanta Georgia July 15, 1887
Mr. J.J. Flynn, General Eastern Agent 23 Park Row, New York City
At Rocky River Springs, Stanly County, NC
Between Two or Three Thousands People present-----a Man Who is 112 old
And Who Saw the Soldiers of the Revolution
The celebration of the Fourth of July at this watering place was the most remarkable, perhaps, of any held in the United States.Mr. O. Austin, of Monroe, was the master of ceremonies, and faithfully discharged the duties of the position.
At 11 O'clock, a procession was formed in front of the large hotel, and was trilled by the music of a brass band, moved toward the springs with solemn martial tread. at the head of this processionas a tribute of respect to decrepidage, was placed Mr. William Whitley, of Stanly County, NC an octogenarian chief centenarian hero, a venerable patriarch of the revolution. The old man's step was weak and tottering, his form bowed with the weight of centuries and head white with the snows of over three times thirty winters.
The master of ceremonies rose and introduced Rev. C. H. Martin. This speaker had made a special visit at the old man home, having learned from Mr. Whitley and his neighbors some interesting facts concerning what the old man had seen and knew of the revolution, by request stood up to speak in the old man's shoes. He selected as a subject "The Experience of a Patriarch" William Whitley, of Stanly, the oldest man perhaps in the United States, being 112 years of age. He proposed to consider the subject from a fourfold point of view. First, the patriarch's character:Second, his age: Third, his experience of the revolution: fourth, his message. As to how the writer handled the subject, whether badly or well, is not for him but othersto say. We therefore, leave the speech, presenting only the skeleton hereinbefore set fourth. We will however as a writer, state some facts connected with the old man's history, which may be of general or universal interest. That William Whitley is 112 years old at the lowest calculation is capable of being demonstrated by circumstantial and historical proof.
In the first place, his character among his neighbors is spotless and unsullied. Foul mouthed and loud roaring calumny has never dared to breathe a whisper of suspicion against his good name. His neighbors have always regarded him as the soul of honor, integrity and trust. This old man with such a spotless and unsullied reputation alleges, and always during his life alleged, that when a boy he saw the light horse of the revolution, saw the soldiers with gleaming swords and glittering guns.This is no new thing, but has been handed down from sire to son and has been lodged in the memory of his neighbors from generation to generation. The bible which contains a record of the old mans age, was carried west by some of his family, and we have therefore, to get to his age by other circumstance. But what year was the soldiers of the revolution in North Carolina? Here history will come to our relief and pour a flood of light on the subject. The soldiers of the revolution, according to A.M. Stephens, were in North Carolina in 1780 and 1781. Let us take that date that would make him the younger.
Suppose then it was in 1781, then it follows that in the year 1881, Mr. Whitley was one hundred years old.But from 81 to 87 is six years, and this added makes 106. But, if 1781 he was large enough to remember events, he must have been at that time at least six years old. This added to 106 makes 112.Now subtract 112 from 1887 and we shall have 1775, as the date of Mr Whitley's birth. Now this historical demonstration corresponds exactly with what his neighbors have always said. Some of his neighbors who are now old, white-headed men, say they remember having heard their grandfathers say that Mr. Whitley was born in 1775. But there is other corroborative testimony. He was thirty three years old where he was married in 1808, and since that time there have been seventy nine years. Now, add seventy nine and thirty three together and we have his age as 112. There is still other evidence that tends to strengthens this position.
The old man when he had lost all his teeth began to cut a third set, and now has five teeth on his upper jaw, cut within the last three years. Nature does not provide a third set of teeth, for any but those who has extreme old age.
Some have surmised, however, the soldiers he saw belonged to the war of 1812. Now Mr. Whitley has lived in Stanly county all of his life, it is the historical fact that the seat of war in that conflict was in Canada and the north all the time till just before the end of hostilities, when it was removed to New Orleans LA. The British sent a fleet with 12,000 men, under Packingham to the mouth of the Mississippi, and Gen. Jackson constructed breastworks of cotton bales, defeated him then and there most gloriously shooting down 2,000 Britons on the field and he himself only losing 7 killed and 6 wounded. Thus then it doth appear in the light of history, that the soldiers of that war were never in North Carolina at all, but first were in Canada then afterwards at new Orleans when it closed. Hence it follows conclusively that Mr. Whitley did not see " them soldiers" in 1812.
Here there is a man in Stanly County who was born a British subject of King George the third, and has lived in Stanly County during the administrations of all the Presidents of the United States government from George Washington to Grover Cleveland, the present incumbent of the White House, the wise executive of our nation. He was here before the United States government had a distinct organization He has in his possession a flint and steel musket which was obtained from a Mr. Castles of Stanly, who was a soldier of the Revolution, saw Cornwallis at Yorktown offer his sword to Washington, and heard the father of his country say to the British nobleman, " Sir, you areworthy to keep your sword"
This musket was stacked at the surrender, and Mr. Castles brought it directly from Yorktown to Stanly. It has upon it's stock a scar received at the battle of Yorktown, Mr. Whitley bought the gun the year he was married in 1808. He has therefore, had in his possession for seventy-five years.
At the conclusion of the first speaker's remarks, the old revolutionary musket, well charged with powder was brought forward and that venerable patriarch of revolutionary fame fired it off before all the people. Then three cheers were proposed for the old man, and such a shout arose from the people as made the hills and welkin ring.
We do not suppose there was in all the United States such a celebration as this- a celebration in which a man who is at least one hundred and twelve years old and who saw the soldiers of the revolution, fired with his own hands a musket used in the battle of Yorktown and obtained from the revolutionary soldier who saw Lord Cornwallis offer his sword to the father of his country and heard the noble magnanimousWashington say to the conquered, but brave Briton: " sir, you are worthy of your sword"
Very truly,C.H. Martin
Mount Sylvan, Texas
July 30, 1887
Mr. William Whitley: My dear sir:I noticed today an article published in the Atlanta Constitution, August 26, 1887 of your being an old reliable citizen of Stanly County, N.C., and that one Castles gave you a British musket.Stanly County, N.C., is the nativity of my family of Castles who emigrated from there in 1832.My grandfather, William Castles' wife, was a Burlison, they both died in Choctaw County, Mississippi, some 15 years ago.My father, Isaac Castles, left your county or I believe he had lived a while in Montgomery County, and he, too, came to Mississippi with one George Manuel.Pa and Manuel emigrated to Texas in 1850, both are now dead.I have a certificate in my possession from citizen of Montgomery County, N.C., of Pa's good standing as a citizen.Their names are D. Kendell, Howard Hoarne, Palmer Greene, Adderton and McLester.These names I believe are from Montgomery County, N.C.
The constitution says that one Castle gave you a British musket, I believe.I would like to know which Castle it was.My great-grandfather Castle was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, and was cut down and left for dead, by the light horse cavalry of the British troops, but he recovered.As I do not recollect his given name you may know and can tell me also where he was buried,his age, at his death, and many other valuable ideas.I have kinfolks over there yet, but do not recollect their names.They did not live in Stanly County.Our set of Castles were Methodist and are scatter from your county to California.I think some of my kinfolks name is Hatley.Did the Castle you knew have any brothers and, if so, how many?If you have a newspaper published in your county and you furnish the editor with this letter he will be glad to publish it.
I was over in Choctaw County, Mississippi, a short time ago, and saw the mate to the old British musket you have.My great-grandfather Castle brought it from the War of 1776, and his son William has killed 50 deer, in one season,with one flint.That was in an early day, in Mississippi, before the war between the states.I have been a citizen of Texas for 38 years.Any of your friends who desires to correspond with me about Texas have permission.I am a Granger, a Methodist, a member of the Farmer's Alliance, the last name order will be in your county soon, join it, it is good.Read, answer and furnish, this letter to some valuable newspaper in your county.The publisher will send me one copy.
Very respectfully,John M. Castles
Locust Level,Stanly County,North Carolina
Mr. John Castle
In answer to your kind letter, I make the following reply. Your great grandfather was named Thomas Castle. He had one brother, John, and they were both soldiers in the Revolutionary War.
Thomas Castles had three sons, John, James and William. He (William Castle) married Rachel Burlison, daughter of Issac Burlison. Thomas Castles died of old age, and was buried at the Castles graveyard, not far from Gold Hill.
John Castles had two sons, Jimmie and Jack. I have the John Castles musket that he brought back from the war of1776. To all who may read this letter, I was 112 years old last December.
George and Rebecca Whitley were my father and mother. My mother was a Huneycutta daughter of Ambrose Huneycutt. My great grandfather Huneycutt had two sons that I recollect.