Paul Hargrave was born about 1871 in Virginia, and lived most of his life in Matoaca, and was in fellowship with Matoaca Gospel Hall. He was self-employed as a florist, and in the early 1950's he was noted as the only Black person living in Matoaca, and he was well-liked by everyone. There is dispute on his birth year, as well as the spelling of his last name, and the identity of his father. His mother's name was Cassandra. He never married.