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The John Chavis Historical Society was founded in 1986 with the purpose of preserving the history of African Americans in general and the history of John Chavis in particular. John Chavis was one of the first teachers in North Carolina, having taught Senator Willie P. Mangum , a US diplomat, and even a governor of North Carolina, Governor Charles Manly. Please see the enclosed attachment which gives a brief history of John Chavis and the John Chavis Historical Society. However, in spite of his contributions to the state of North Carolina, he is buried in an unmarked grave in an abandoned cemetery.

We are asking your business or organization to help us raise the funds ($10,000) to restore this historic cemetery where some of North Carolina’s finest citizens have been laid to rest. Your donation is tax deductible. We also plan to have a website which will be supported by your donation. We will recognize you as a patron in our published programs. We will greatly appreciate your financial donation to this worthy cause. Please make your check payable to the John Chavis Historical Society at the address above. The categories for giving are: Contributor - $100 - $400; Donor - $500 - $900; Associate - $1,000 - $2,000; and Platinum - $3,000 - $5,000. Please indicate on the enclosed card your preference.

One of the goals of the John Chavis Historical Society has been to find the gravesite of John Chavis. Dr. George Clayton Shaw, founder of Timothy Darling Presbyterian Church and Mary Potter High School in Oxford, North Carolina states in his book John Chavis, published in 1931 that Chavis is buried in the family cemetery on the Mangum property in Bahama, N.C. As a result of expeditions to the site by the John Chavis Historical Society, we discovered in 1988 the Old Cemetery where Senator Mangum’s mother and father are buried, and we are certain that John Chavis’s grave is there. The North Carolina State University School of Forestry is in charge of the former Mangum Plantation, now called Hill Forest. The forest is named for George Watts Hill, famous banker and philanthropist of Durham, N.C. One of the Forestry students who were the Society’s guides, Bret Wallingford, was the first to discover the cemetery which was used in 1829, following the death of Senator Mangum’s mother. There are at least 35 graves,; some unmarked are the graves of slaves. We will be very grateful for your financial support.

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