William Waff & Willie Traynham

William Benbury Waff 1853 – 1933 | his parents
& 1882 Willie LeGrand Traynham 1862 – 1954 | her parents
Of Edenton and Winton NC

This is my working hypothesis – the way I see it as of this moment!!

This man was a g-uncle to my Aunt Lily Smith Parker.

William Benbury Waff (13 Nov 1853 Edenton NC – 11 Jan 1933 Winton NC) attended school in Edenton, then Reynoldson Male Institute. He taught a year in Virginia. Then he graduated 1880 Wake ForestCollege where he was the recipient of the Latin Medal. He spent two years teaching in Davidson County and one year at Washington, NC where he met his wife.
married 21 Dec 1882 Willie LeGrand Traynham 14 Dec 1862 – 18 Nov 1954

He had moved to Reynoldson in 1883 and taught with his brother T E Waff, at Reynoldson institute.
Pastor of Reynoldson Baptist Church 1884 – 1907 [also pastor of Gatesville, Ariel, Cool Spring, Beulah, Middle Swamp, Ballad’s Bridge, and Great Fork Churches]
When T E Waff decided to move to Brunswick, Georgia he sold the school to his brother William.

Student body of Reynoldson during the 1890’s


Owned and operated Reynoldson Institute 1887 – 1905 when he sold it to Gates County for use as a public school

1907- he moved to Murfreesboro NC for eight years pastor at Meherrin, Conway, Severn and Margarettsville Churches.
Then moved to the Jonesboro field and then to Pittsboro. In 1922 moved to Mocksville for ten years.
He returned in Dec 1931 to eastern North Carolina to live in Winton NC.

Children of William Benbury Waff & Willie LeGrand Traynham:
1. Ruth Waff
2. Charles Manly Waff
married Elizabeth Beale of Franklin VA
a. Charles Manly Waff Jr. 16 Dec 1913 Norfolk VA –
i. William Burns Waff
married Ellen Coutts has family Bible
live, currently, in Connecticut (formerly Maryland)
ii. Craig Beale Waff
currently in Ohio.
b. Milton Beale Waff 6 Mar 1918 Norfolk VA –
never married
3. Mary [Mamie] Waff
married Whitley
4. Jessie Waff [as 2nd wife] lived Ahoskie
married 1934 John Andrew Northcott 10 Dec 1871 – 7 Oct 1943 Winton NC

Willie T & Willie B Waff

their home in Gates Co
their family

Ref: “Family Records as compiled by Emily Waff Bailey and Mary Elizabeth Waff Staples.”
“Pride of the Past, Hope for the Future, Piney Grove-Reynoldson Baptist Church 1827-1977” by Edith H Freeman Seiling
see also “History of Reynoldson Institute” by Lillie Waff Smith 1916


John Andrew Northcott ca 1939
10 Dec 1871 – 7 Oct 1943
Register of Deeds, Hertford Co, NC
he was the son of Andrew James Northcott and Roberta [Bertie] Freeman of Winton, NC
he married 1st 1892 Mamie Lassiter 1874-23 Dec 1930
dau of William J Lassiter and Imogene Womble
their children were Loula I April 1894; Helena C Nov 1895; John Jr Oct 1897; Thornton D Oct 1899.
he married 2nd 1934 Jessie Waff dau of Willie Traynham Waff

7 thoughts on “William Waff & Willie Traynham”

  1. My name is Nina Michael Traynham, daughter of Michael Lawrence Traynham. Idk if this is the right information I’m looking up but was very curious about my last name and my family from my father’s side. All I know is that from my father’s side we are Scandinavian and have family in Scotland and Ireland as well. My birth mother is Cuban and Spaniard. If someone can get a hold of me if this is my family I would truly appreciate it. (561)222-9837

  2. I’m happy to find your information, which I believe is a match to William Benbury Waff. I recently received writings dated 1929 of my grandfather, Clarence Horton Poe, Moncure, NC, in which he recounts in August 5, 1915 in Moncure NC, ‘a good man, Rev A.T. Howell, assisting our good friend Rev W.B. Waff in a revival meeting’. C.H. Poe made a profession of faith that day and was baptized by Rev. W.B. Waff on the banks of Old Gold Mine Branch, west of Moncure, on Sep 5, 1915.

  3. Forgot to say that I was in the fifth generation in the Waff/Whitley family alive at the same time and have fond memories of Grandmother (Willie T. Waff) and all her children. We called my actual grandmother (Mary Mamie Waff) Na Na.

  4. I was delighted to happen upon your website. I had never pursued my genealogy beyond what I already knew, or thought I knew. I did a google search on myself to see what the internet has on me.

    Willie Traynham Waff was my great-grandmother. My father, Horace Benjamin Whitley, son of Mary (Mamie) Waff, my grandmother. I suppose we are distant relatives, though I couldn’t trace the lineage. Born 1943, I am very familiar with the names and places on your website. I have a lot of family pictures from my lifetime, as well as many going back to people I never knew, some labelled, some not. Thank you for this page. If I could contribute in any way, please let me know.

    1. Hello distant cousin! William Benbury Waff and Willie Legrande Traynham are my great-great-grandparents through my father’s side of the family. My dad’s name is William Burns Waff.

    2. Hello Philip,
      My Mother & Horace were 1st cousins. I have a picture of your Mom (my Great Aunt Mamie) & her siblings and your Dad (and his siblings along with my Mom) at Willie’s 90th birthday party. In 2014 I sent copies to your Aunt Elizabeth but have not heard back. Is she still living? Do you know how I can reach her daughters?
      Your 3rd cousin, Cat

    3. Hello Philip,
      My Mother & Horace were 1st cousins. I have a picture of your Mom (my Great Aunt Mamie) & her siblings and your Dad (and his siblings along with my Mom) at Willie’s 90th birthday party. In 2014 I sent copies to your Aunt Elizabeth. I researched the internet and now know she has passed away. Regards,
      Your 3rd cousin, Cat

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