Charlie Matthews (1896-1941) my grand-father on my paternal side portrait style photo is my favorite picture. He’s well dressed and looks little prosperous. Date of photo is unknown.
He was the son of John Matthews and Amanda Allen-Matthews both of Barnwell, South Carolina. Charlie Matthews was the youngest of six (6) Children. He was born August 29, 1894 in Savannah Chatham, Georgia.
His US World War I Draft Registration Card revealed that he was living at the family home in Savannah Georgia. The 1920 Census showed that he was 23 years old. Charlie married Anna Harris; his occupation was a Tinner (roofer). This same census also showed that his home was mortgage free.
Between 1920-1922 Charlie Matthews, alongside his wife and mother joins what is known as The Great Migration. This migration is when a substantial number of African Americans moved from the Rural South to the Urban North.
In 1922, Charlie and Anna Matthews first child is born in Harlem, New York. I don’t know whether they left Savannah via Train, Boat or Bus; what I do know is that they were among the many migrants that anticipated a better future for their family. In 1941, Charlie Matthews died a Widower at 45 years old.
1920; Census Place: Savannah, Chatham, Georgia; Roll: T625_240; Page: 41B; Enumeration District: 58; Image: 1151
New York State Census, 1925