Warren C. Coleman Lived in Downtown Concord
By Norman McCullough
On April 25, 2021, Paul Brandon Barringer II, a 69-year-old white man, came to Concord North Carolina to meet his Black family. This was an historic occasion wherein members of his Black family (descendants of Roxana Coleman) came to the Allen T. Small Family Center to meet Paul Barringer II and greet him because his (Paul's) family was tied to their family. Specifically, Paul Barringer II, now living in Norwich Connecticut, is the great grandson of Paul Brandon Barringer. Barringer was the son of General Rufus Barringer. Paul's II great grandfather was a racist of the highest order, but Rufus Barringer was the father of Thomas and Warren C. Coleman and, their mother was Roxana Coleman, former slave. Paul Grandon Barringer also became the President of Virginia Tech.
Based on the arrival of Paul Barringer II in April, after visiting Mount Pleasant with him, I learned that pioneer John Paul Barringer came to America in the early 1700's from Germany. He was an indentured servant and later moved to Mount Pleasant where he was able to acquire (take) thousands of acres of land for his family and their descendants.
Many of the family members and neighbors owned Black slaves (including Daniel Coleman - Warren's master). These early settlers owned Black slaves and they benefitted greatly from the toll of those slaves. I also discovered that Warren and his family (including Thomas, Roxana, Rufus and later his stepfather lived on Union Street where the Cannon library now stands.
Warren later opened his multi-purpose grocery store on Union St, and he lived with his wife, Jane, in a 4 bed-room house on Church and Cabarrus Street. In other words, one cannot, or should not speak about the development of Downtown Concord without including the life and legacy of Warren C. Coleman.
Paul Barringer II is planning on returning to Concord in mid-July to again greet and mingle with his Black family. His purpose is to make certain that the descendants of the Coleman family are respected and that the remnants of slavery like the Jefferson Davis Marker is permanently excluded from the property previously occupied by the slaves held by people in the City of Concord.
Norman J. McCullough, Sr. is a retired college instructor and an author of WarrenClayColeman.com. He is also a trustee of Price Memorial AME Zion church. He can be reached at: email@example.com.