Mansour Family Papers


Mansour Family Papers


Civil War--Lebanon
Family trees


Biographical/Historical Note

Betrus Dahar (B.D.) Rabil was the son of Robert Dahar and Marcia Rabil. He was born on April 1, 1883 in Hammana, Lebanon and immigrated to North Carolina in the early twentieth century along with his three brothers Frank Assad, Ameal Peter, and Michael Rabil. Ameal and Michael settled in Weldon, North Carolina, where they married Roslyn and Madeline Rabil, children of Lebanese immigrants Joseph and Bertha Rabil. Ameal and Michael ran the Rabil Brothers Department Store until Michael's death in 1981, and Michael co-owned five rental homes in Weldon with T. Allen Buck (1902-1991) and invested in B.D's property enterprises in Rocky Mount, NC. Frank Assad Rabil, the eldest brother, married Mary Hawa and settled in Weldon between 1920 and 1930.  

B.D. Rabil settled in Rocky Mount, NC, where he worked in real estate and property management. In 1907, B.D. married Beula Davis, with whom he had five children: Albert, Lester Frances, Thelma, Veronica, and Margaret. The couple divorced between 1920 and 1925. In 1926, B.D. married Susie Safy, a fellow Lebanese American, whose first husband, George Joseph Safy, had died in 1924. Susie had five children when she married B.D.: Sophie Mae Safy Rabil (1909-1987), Alice Eugene Safy Lewis (1914-1977), Sue Olga Safy (1916-1937), George Joseph Safy (1921-1944), and George Victor Safy (1924-1977).

B.D. and Beula's five children appear to have lived with their mother and their stepfather Anthony C. Striman, who married Beulah in 1930. Susie Safy's children appear to have spent time in the Epworth Orphanage in Columbia, South Carolina, where they are listed in the 1930 census before rejoining their mother and stepfather in North Carolina in the 1930s. Susie Safy and B.D. Rabil had two children together, Virginia Dell Rabil Mansour and Betrus Dahar Rabil, Jr. B.D. Rabil, Sr., passed away in 1964; Susie Safy Rabil passed away in 1969. In 1970, the North Carolina Supreme Court upheld the bequeathal of B.D. Rabil, Sr.’s real estate and personal property to his two youngest children, Virginia Mansour and B.D. Rabil, Jr, after a legal battle between them and his five older children.

Virginia Dell Rabil was born in 1927. She attended the University of North Carolina Women’s College in Greensboro, North Carolina, where she was a member of the Gamma Alpha Sorority. Virginia married Ernest Norman Mansour (1918-1983), a fellow Lebanese American. Virginia and Ernest had two children, Ernest Norman Mansour, Jr., and Edward Francis Mansour II. Ernest Norman Mansour was the child of Michael Norman Mansour and Nellie Heeden Mansour. Michael Mansour settled in Goldsboro, North Carolina, where he opened and operated Mansour’s Department Store (later renamed Hub Department Store). Nell Hedeen was the daughter of Lebanese immigrants Cater and Herley Heeden, who owned a dry-goods business in Rock Hill, South Carolina, before moving to North Carolina. Nell's brother, Ernest Heeden, served in World War I and married Alice Saleeby. William Hedeen, her other brother, was a writer who married Essie Joseph Heeden. 

B.D., Jr. was born on July 4, 1929 to Susie and B.D. Rabil in Rocky Mount, NC. He attended the Edwards Military Institute in Salemburg, NC, and served in World War II.Upon his return to Rocky Mount, B.D., Jr. joined the real estate business. He was inducted into the Rocky Mount Bowling Association Hall of Fame in 1988. He married Elsie Asad Rabil in 1962, with whom he had three children: Richard J. Rabil, Robert Joseph Rabil, Sr., and Cynthia Rabil Williams. B.D. Rabil, Jr., passed away in 2004. 

Scope/Content Note

This collection contains materials related to the Mansour and Rabil families. The bulk of the images and documents pertain to the branch of the Rabil family descended from Betrus Dahar Rabil and Susie Safy Rabil, as well as material documenting the Mansour and Hedeen families of North and South Carolina.

Family photographs make up most of the collection, with some photographs related to the Lebanese Civil War.


Eddie, Ernie, and Virginia Mansour


Moise A. Khayrallah Center for Lebanese Diaspora Studies


1910s-1974, undated


Processed by Khayrallah Center staff. Collection Guide content contributed by Claire A. Kempa and updated by Allison Hall, 2023 November.


The donor retains full ownership of any copyright and rights currently controlled. Nonexclusive right to authorize uses of these materials for non-commercial research, scholarly, or other educational purposes are granted to Khayrallah Center pursuant to U.S. Copyright Law. Usage of the materials for these purposes must be fully credited with the source. The user assumes full responsibility for any use of the materials.




KC 0037

Collection Tree

This collection is a part of a larger collection that has been divided into more specific collections.

Khayrallah Center Collections
Mansour Family Papers