Fashion Stylist | Creative Type | Blogger

C. WhiteI’m C. Rae White and this blog is an eclectic mix of my various interests and creativity. I’ve been a fashion fanatic since childhood and started runway modeling, coordinating clothing and fashion shows as a teenager. I’ve worked with a modeling agency, been a fashion stylist and a personal shopper. I currently enjoy creating fashion sets and product collections here. Check out my blog fashion posts hereI’m a creative who loves art and jewelry making. I’ve also made patterns and color palettes on colourlovers.com. Check out my art related posts here.

I began blogging in 2005 on MSN Spaces as an outlet for creative and thoughtful self-expression. My initial blog content featured technology innovation, fashion and beauty trends, interesting people, places and things. I’ve been blogging on WordPress.com since October of 2010 and my content largely remains the same.

Proud Detroiter

I’m a proud 6th generation Detroiter. My maternal Binga ancestors settled in Detroit in the early 1840’s. I’m a Detroit Snob, I Love My City. I’m cognizant of the longstanding issues plaguing my beloved hometown and I’m hurt and saddened by the ruin porn (photography) and pervasive negativity across the Internet regarding Detroit. My purpose is to highlight the positive, restorative, innovative and fun things happening around town. Check out my Detroit category here.

My Background

I am African, Indigenous to America, and Western European.

My African ancestors primarily come from Ivory Coast/Ghana and Cameroon/Congo, with traces in Nigeria, Senegal and Benin/Togo. My maternal Binga ancestors were most likely initially enslaved in Virginia for generations and then offspring were sold or taken into Kentucky sometime during the mid to late 1780’s. I am aware of two plantation owners who held my ancestors, but only one has been confirmed. My maternal 3rd great grandfather, William W. Binga, was born a slave in Greenupsburg, Greenup County, Kentucky in 1817. Also, my paternal great grandfather, George H. White, was born in Greenupsburg, Greenup County, Kentucky in 1855 and was possibly a mulatto slave, but there were free Negroes living there also. George shows up in the 1870 Kentucky Census as a 15 year old house servant living with a white couple.

My original indigenous paternal ancestors were Egypto-Nubian (Manding, Mandinka, Mandingo) Africans who settled in southern Mexico at La Venta between 1400 & 1200 BCE. My direct ancestors lived at Lake Chapala, Mexico in the land of the Olmecs or Xi People. Much later, the Mayan’s encroached upon their land and they were pressed into the Mayan army. When the Aztecs came to conquer the Mayans my ancestors chose to fight with them, subsequently rising through the Aztec ranks. Later, my ancestors came out of Mexico on a northeastern migration in 992 AD as Lenne/i Lenape (Original Man). They settled into their first permanent village at Crystal River Florida and were known as the Mound Builders. Later, they were also part of the Fort Ancient culture, subsequently becoming Shawnee (Kispoko Sept), from which all Shawnee chiefs emerged. My known indigenous ancestors are Ella Thompson – Elam (paternal great Grandmother) and Grace Viola Elam – White (Paternal Grandmother). My father’s family (both sides) ended up living in Portsmouth, Scioto OH and Troy, Miami OH.

My European roots are primarily in Europe West, Ireland and Scandinavia, with traces in Great Britain and the Iberian Peninsula. I don’t know much about my Western European roots, but I suspect some of it comes from chattel slavery rape and the mixing of Europeans (primarily French) with Shawnee natives; and racial mixing of my maternal Cotillier family line.

My maternal 3rd great grandfather, William W. Binga married an orphaned Irish girl named Adelphia Seymour. She later claimed to have found her birth family, declaring she was a member of the New York State Powers family. I suspect that William married a white woman (in 1844) to secure the freedom of his children, due to his fugitive slave status (1836 until 1865) living and conducting business openly in Detroit, MI.

I supposedly have maternal Cotillier French and Afro/Portuguese ancestors, but none of that family tree information has been substantiated. What is documented about the beginnings of my branch the Cotillier family is is as follows:

“On the website, Virtual Jamestown the Cotillier family begins with a free white woman Katherine Jewell-Pond born about 1639 who had 3 illegitimate mulatto children, by an unknown black man, called by the surname Cattilla including Mary born 1669, William born on 3/6/1670 (the date of his indenture) and Matthew (my direct ancestor) born 1672.”

The Courtillier Family Tree states that Abram Catillier, a free Negro of Jamestown Virginia, born 1652 was the father of Katherine Jewell-Pond’s three mulatto children. I find this information a bit disconcerting, because Katherine had her first mulatto child when she was about 30 and Abram Catillier was a 17 year old teenager in 1669.

Family Researcher

I’m a descendant of the Underground Railroad. My Binga ancestors escaped slavery from Newport (now Covington), Campbell County, Kentucky in 1836 (Africa, Virginia, Kentucky, Amherstburg OT, Chatham/Kent OT and other parts of Canada, Detroit, Saginaw, Howell, Pontiac and other parts of Michigan, St. Paul & Minneapolis MN, Cincinnati OH, Chicago IL, Harlem NY and more). Some of our family surnames are Binga, Cotillier, Robinson, McCowan, Winchester, Dandridge, Ford, Smith, Scott, Palmer, Dismond, Atkins, Hughes, Nash, Bowles, Williams, White, Marshall, Margolin, Coleman, Wright and many more. I’ve written articles about a few family members and the history connected to those individuals. I continue to be fascinated and amazed by my Binga ancestors, check out my Family Research category here.

Several of my cousins (maternal side) conducted research on the Courtillier, Cotillier, Cotellier, Catillier, Catillia, Catilla, Cotillia, Cutillo, Kerteller, etc… branch of our family (Paris France, Africa, Portugal, Quebec CA, Jamestown through to Richmond VA, Detroit MI, Saginaw and other parts of MI, Chicago IL, Ohio, Altadena and other parts of CA). Some of our family surnames are Berry, Epps, Combs, Francis, Stewart and many more. Also, the Cutillo surname is on the Melungeon list.

Thanks for stopping by!

36 Responses to About

  1. freedom says:

    Cool – don’t ever change, girly. Peace.

  2. C. Rae White says:

    I’m good! It seems as though things are always changing around here!!

  3. perceptionshapes says:

    You have a vibrant eye and being; I sense it throughout your page. Thank you for the connection and stopping by.

  4. Love your blog C. Rae! Only just stumbled upon it & already I’m addicted – I have major passions for fashion, art & creativity so your blog is heavenly for me! 🙂 Excited to read & see more of your posts & love the positive attitude you write with!

    Stay stylish 😉

    The Image Mistress, xoxo

  5. Team Oyeniyi says:

    Very interesting – I’ll be back! 🙂

  6. Liza Vassallo says:

    How do you like wordpress in comparison to MSN spaces? I was on the same boat but I like the freedom and sophistication of tools here.

    • C. Rae White says:

      Well, I like both. Spaces was fun because I could be creative with the home page, always changing the banner with my own graphic creations, placing videos, games, music and other stuff on the home page as well. Here at WordPress, I’ve had to step it up by doing a lot more writing. In the future I hope to improve and do more with my blog.

  7. C. Rae, thanks for the follow. It’s so great to meet another local blogger. I look forward to browsing more of your sight!

  8. C. Rae White says:

    Thanks sooo much! I greatly enjoy reading the wonderful posts on your blog.

  9. Becky J. says:

    Thank you for visiting carefreecomposition.com. I appreciate the blog like!

  10. Such an awesome bio! I’m interested in researching my family tree but haven’t a clue how to get started; any advice? 🙂

    • C. Rae White says:

      Thanks and I appreciate you stopping by! All you need to do make a list of names. Finding family members will be easier if you have birth dates and states and cities of residence. Start with the free service FamilySearch.org to find census, marriage, death and other information. Good hunting!

  11. mamaproud says:

    I love design. Not so up on fashion but enjoy a good layout. I’m also from SoCal… Pasadena/Altadena. Learning how to live in the midwest. Will keep your blog handy for tips on fashion and the like.

    • C. Rae White says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by! I also love art and design and it looks like you have lots of interesting posts along those lines. Welcome to the midwest, I’m sure you already have a heavy coat and tall boots for those cold, windy and snowy days (weeks & months teehee). The weather here can be a big challenge, especially if you live anywhere near the Great Lakes.

  12. Nice how you got your site lookin all festive. Happy New Year, sista!

  13. Chanele says:

    Hey girl – as I love and follow your blog posts, I decided to nominated you as one of my inspiring bloggers Visit http://globalpremiere.wordpress.com/2012/12/31/very-inspiring-blogger-award

    Hope you like it.

  14. Hey! It’s Cameron from Threads. I nominated you for a Blogger Award! Thanks for supporting me! (:

  15. well, hello there…I see you still been able to keep your blog up to date. I’m still around just busy. Well, I gotta go, I check back on some of your posts real soon. Til then, ciao!

  16. What up sista! It’s been awhile…I hope all is well with you. You and yours are not affected by that Flint mess are you? Peace

    • C. Rae White says:

      Greetings Chocolate!! I’m blessed and everything is well. I hope things are well with you and yours. We’ll find out soon enough if Detroit school aged children are lead infected after the results of recent tests are released. Meanwhile, there is a group that is organizing state wide circulation of an approved petition to recall Gov. Schnider.

  17. How is the D? Have you gotten back the any results from the water testing? I hope your water is safe to drink and such. Lemme know what’s happening. Take care.

  18. Just came to wish you a Happy New Year!

  19. Thanks as always for your words of encouragement and support and right back atcha. I know you doing big things in Detroit, whichyobadself! Quck question, did you get an email from me about a book about I wanted to recommend you to read? I sent it about a month ago. I can resend it if you didn’t get it or it went to your junk mail folder. Lemme know. Peace.

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