So how did she come about the last name of Pool? As far as one can tell, this too was a strange occurrence. But what is known is that, Catherine had been going by the last name of Pool as early as 1816. Her uncle, a man named George Locke who died somewhere around that time, made reference to her in his will by that last name, as his niece and her mother, Mary Barkley as his sister. However, if Catherine was born after Mary Barkley’s husband died, and she was using the last name Pool in 1816, it could only mean one of two things. Either she was going by her and her natural father’s last name or she was married. It’s almost certain that the later was the case, and her marriage would have had to taken place prior to her becoming a teenager. This is a troubling thought, because such a thing at such a tender age could have happened only through the consent and blessing of a parent or guardian.
In the mind of some, Catherine’s marriage was arranged by her mother, Mary Barkley. And it was an attempt by her to shield her two white sons from a bit of the shame and embarrassment that she brought upon their family. Still, one would have to wonder, who would be so inclined to marry a child. To learn his identity was no easy task. An actual search on just about every male in Rowan County, North Carolina who possessed the last name Pool had to be conducted. In this effort, the name Elihu Pool stood out. The reason he had become the primary focus of this search had everything to do with the way his marriage had been recorded, which seemed to play right into the life of Catherine. The recording of his marriage lacked the name of his bride and that of a witness, and the date was displayed as “xx xxx 181x.”
A look further into his affairs revealed, that he and his wife had two children. A daughter named Margaret, whose date of birth could not be determined, and a son named Elihu who was born in 1819. Unfortunately, the elder Elihu Pool died the same year that his son was born, leaving his wife alone to raise their two young children. Aside from the lost of her husband, a big concern of the widow Pool had to have been the Rowan County court’s decision in which, Elihu Pool’s estate would become the property of his two minor children, whom they deemed as his true heirs at law. Nevertheless, the court didn’t just simply overlook his widow. It decided that a year’s provisions are taken out of the estate for her to live on and provide for her children.