Conclusion & Future Research

In researching William Carter's life and his family, there were definite roadblocks and a sense of blockage in terms of finding about who he was. And although a mispelling or two may seem insignificant, at a time period where black erasure was common, it is evident that the mistake is a result of its time. 

And although the research showed only a glimpse into Carter's life there were many unanswered questions. Firstly, who was George Harrison and what was his relation to William Carter. The census reveals him to be about 10 years of age and his parents birthplace to be Virginia and D.C. As well as having been in attendance of school for five years and was able to read and write. [1] So why was he living with William and his wife? 

And unable to confirm his death record, he likely died around the year 1918 when looking at land records and census. There is an appearance of William H. Carter in the Table of Tracts of Land in 1918, but in the land deed record where the land was transferred from Matilda Carter et al to the Scotts there is no mention of his name, yet Mary and her husband are present in union with their mother. [2] 

It was interesting to trace a bit of William Carter's life in pertaining to where he lived and with who and the type of community he was around. To my understanding, black education at the time was a difficult task for many when there was an active opposition to their funding and due to segregation, yet Carter was able to find a community where his daughter was likely able to receive an education. [3] If anything, it would be interesting to research more into who Eben E. Mason was and how involved he was in the life of Carter and his neighbors in Fort Belvoir.

[1] Year: 1900; Census Place: MT Vernon, Fairfax, Virginia; Roll: 1707; Page: 7; Enumeration District: 0021
[2] Land Deed, 1918, Fairfax Circuit Court Historic Records Center, Deed Book I-8: 528, 529, Fairfax, Virginia.
[3] A History of Education For Black Students in Fairfax County Prior to 1954. by Evelyn Darnell Russell-Porte Dissertation submitted to the faculty of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of DOCTOR OF EDUCATION, July 19, 2000

By Jeffrey Herrera

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