Charity Potts
(d. before 1840 Census)
Lenoir County, North Carolina


Charity Potts has been our family's mystery for generations and very little is known about her. She lived in a county whose court house burned and any records that survived are in private hands or State Archives. Thanks to six descendants of Robert Potts, seven descendants of Daniel Potts and four descendants of Charity, we now have autosomal evidence with 18 triangulations that she belonged to the early Lenoir County Robert Potts family. Still unknown is who her parents were.

According to our family oral history, she lived in Lenoir County, NC and had three illegitimate children by Walter Dunn, Jr. (1788-1850). Census and deeds of the time indicate Walter lived in close proximity with the early Potts families referred to on this website and Y-DNA tests confirm he was the father of Newman Potts.

Dunn & Potts by Sarah Virginia (Jennie) Jones

A family story is that she was called Chellie and later in life married a harness maker by the name of Waterberry. Her youngest son Lucius learned the trade of harness maker under his step-father.

Is this Charity in the 1830 Lenoir County Census? Neighbor Lucy Faulkner was d/o Pleasant Potts.

Charity Potts and Walter Dunns, Jr.'s three children were: Newman, Hannah and Lucius. Newman settled in Wayne County; Hannah lived in Lenoir County and Lucius settled in Jones County.

It is not known when Charity was born or died. Son Newman was born in 1819 and her last child Lucius was born in 1832. Lucius' obituary stated he was "a lad of tender years" at her death. There was a male child under the age of 10 in the home of Walter Dunn Jr in the 1840 Lenoir County census and could have been Lucius as Walter's oldest son was 18 years old at the time.

Her life was short but many of her descendants still know her name.


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