Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #49

Couple: Eleanor Brokenbery and Ulysses Robinson

Date of Wedding: April 17, 1949

Place: Home of bride's mother (Big Bethel, VA)

Officiant: Rev. J.D. Adkinson

Fun facts

The house was decorated with spring flowers, carnations, and potted plants.

The bride wore a navy blue dress with matching accessories.

The bride carried a bouquet of Gardenias.

The couple married on Easter Sunday.


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Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #48

Couple: Nicole Eason and Devon Melvin

Date of Wedding:  May 3, 2005

Place:    Wake County Courthouse (Raleigh, NC)

Officiants: Wake County Justice of the Peace

Fun facts

The couple met in 2004.

One of the first things the groom told the bride was that she was going to be his wife. The bride did not take kindly to that declaration.  

The couple dated for 8 months.

One day they woke up and decided to get married.  They didn't have rings or family present.  Two strangers who were also getting married that day served as their witnesses and signed their marriage certificate.  The bride and groom returned the favor for that couple as well.  They testify that it does not require a traditional wedding to have a strong marriage.

The couple purchased their first home six months after marrying and they had the first child 1.5 years later.

The groom supported the bride while she completed nursing school.

The couple are the proud parents of two daughters, Genesis and Karma.

The bride and groom are convinced that they are soul mates because of their spiritual connections and ability to often communicate without words.

They are best friends and 90 percent of the time, if you see one of them, you will see both of them.

They couple loves to travel on cruises and are headed to Bermuda soon.

The couple continues to shower together after 13 years and the groom tucks the bride into bed every night.

Both partners are humanitarians; they try to quietly empower others financially, emotionally, etc.

The groom's nickname for his bride is Bunny.  The groom did not know that the nickname of the bride's father was Rabbit.


Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #45

Couple: Tia Rowland and Terry Webb

Date of Wedding:  April 18, 2015

Place: Princeton Church of God (Princeton, NC)

Officiant: Pastor Barbara Vinson

Fun facts

The couple picked three wedding dates and put them in a hat.  The date randomly selected became their wedding date.

The bride and groom first met as children when the groom's aunt married the bride's uncle.  The groom was 10 years old at the time and the bride was 6 years old.  They started dating 17 years after that first meeting.

Both the bride and groom come from large families so they had a wedding party of 22 excluding parents, grandparents, hostesses, and ushers.

The couple has three young men ages 12, 16, and 21.

During the wedding ceremony the couple took a moment to salute the bride's deceased father by having his formal military jacket (dress blue jacket) brought into the sanctuary.  See the picture below.



Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #36

Couple: Carolyn Watson and Andrew Young

Date of Wedding:  March 28, 1996

Place: Home of U.S. Ambassador to South Africa James Joseph (Cape Town, South Africa)

Officiant: Reverend McKinley Young (head of AME Church in South Africa)

Fun facts

Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu gave a blessing after the ceremony.

The couple honeymooned at the Sun City gambling resort, the Kruger National Park Game Reserve, and Victoria Falls.

The bride wore an off-shoulder eggshell-colored lace caftan designed by Dali Tambo, son of African National Congress leader Oliver Tambo.

The couple took their vows again in the United States two months after their South African wedding ceremony.

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Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #35

Couple: Charlotte Tomlinson and Richmond Sanders

Date of Wedding:  1850

Place: Smithfield, NC

Officiant: Couple jumped the broom since enslaved people could not legally marry.

Fun facts

The groom was born around 1825 and the bride was born around 1831.  They lived on different slave plantations.

They began acting as husband and wife in 1850.

After Emancipation, the couple went to their local courthouse to make their marriage legal.  They appeared before the Clerk of Court in Johnston County, NC on March 10, 1866.

The couple had 5 children before Emancipation and 5 children after Emancipation.

By 1879, the couple had amassed over 100 acres of land on the very property where the groom had been enslaved.


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Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #24

Couple: Mary Louise Terrell and Dr. Leon Algernon Tancil

Date of Wedding:  June 27, 1923

Place: Freedmen’s Hospital (Washington, D.C.)

Officiant: Reverend D. R. River

Fun facts

The bride was a teacher in the Washington, D.C. public schools. 

The couple married at Freedmen’s Hospital so that the bride’s sick father, Judge Robert Terrell, could witness the ceremony.

The couple had a wedding reception immediately following their ceremony at the home of the bride’s parents.

The bride was the adopted daughter and biological niece of Mary Church Terrell.

The couple received congratulatory messages about their nuptials from leading black Americans including W.E.B. DuBois.


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Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #21

Couple: Willie Mays and Mae Louise Allen

Date of Wedding:  November 27, 1971

Place: Judge’s Chambers, Mexico City, Mexico

Officiant:Judge José Ignacio Fernandez

Fun facts

In 1952, the bride’s mother met Willie Mays and requested an autograph for her 13-year-old daughter (the bride) who was at home.

The bride’s white lace gown had an A-line skirt and high empire waist.  The floor-length dress had a scooped neckline and featured short puff sleeves.  She also wore a white lace mantilla.

The 15-minute ceremony was conducted in Spanish with an interpreter.

The groom designed the engagement and wedding rings himself.

Wedding guests enjoyed a dinner at the Fiesta Palace Hotel restaurant.  

The couple honeymooned in Acapulco.

The bride graduated from the University of Pittsburgh and Howard University and was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

The groom played Major League Baseball for 22 seasons.

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Celebrating Black Brides: Profile #17

Couple: Kellie Carter and Nathaniel Jackson

Date of Wedding:  May 28, 2005

Place: First Metropolitan Church (Houston, TX)

Officiant: Rev. John D. Olgetree

Fun facts

The couple's wedding reception was in the backyard of the bride's parents' home.  The groom had proposed in that yard  on July 4.

The couple met as children.  The future bride was 8 years old and the future groom was 10 years old.  They met in church and their families have always been close.

The couple had a long-distance relationship for their entire 3-year courtship: Colorado and Washington, D.C. and then Texas and New York.  They were also long-distance for the first four years of their marriage (North Dakota and New York City).

The couple endured their long-distance relationship BEFORE Skype, video chat, etc. became popular.  The groom was deployed six weeks after his wedding so he handwrote his bride letters every day for months.  The bride has kept those letters.

The groom deployed again when the couple was expecting their first child, so he wrote a letter to his wife and a letter to his unborn child every day of his deployment.  The letters are in their son’s baby book.