FREE AFRICAN AMERICANS
Including the family histories of more than 80% of those counted
as "all other free persons" in the 1790 and 1800 census
Winner: North Carolina Genealogical Society
Award of Excellence in Publishing
The American Society of Genealogists'
Donald Lines Jacobus Award
A hard copy of this book can be purchased from the publisher:
Copyright by Paul Heinegg 2005
All Rights Reserved
Dedicated to the memory of
Katherine Kee Phillips,
a descendant of the
James, Peters, Tann, and Walden Families
This project was made possible by the generous policy of the Library of Virginia which loaned me microfilm copies of most of the colonial court order books on interlibrary loan in cooperation with the Montgomery County-Norristown, Pennsylvania Public Library.
The librarians at the North Carolina State Library did hours of research for me - far in excess of what is normally expected.
The Registers of Deeds and County Clerks of dozens of North Carolina and Virginia counties sent me copies of hundreds of deeds and wills. In particular the Northampton County, Virginia court clerk photocopied over three hundred pages of the indexes to court records, the court records themselves, and lists of tithables.
The staff of the North Carolina State Archives helped me locate the colonial tax lists. Jonathan Butcher abstracted for me the most important of these, the Bertie and Granville Lists.
I would also like to thank those who have transcribed so many of the microfilm and manuscript records of North Carolina and Virginia: Weynette Parks Haun and Ruth and Sam Sparacio.
Edmund Morgan's book, American Slavery, American Freedom, and Joseph Douglas Deal's doctoral thesis, Race and Class in Colonial Virginia, most influenced my thinking on colonial Virginia history and made me aware of the possibilities for research in Virginia.
Virginia Easley DeMarce shared with me her extensive references for her work, Verry Slitly Mixt, which was published as a series of articles in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly.
G.C. Waldrep shared his extensive research of mixed-race Southside Virginia and North Carolina families.
Robert A. Jackson sent me photocopies of Pettiford and Bibby family letters and let me use his microfilm copy of North Carolina Marriage Bonds. Roger A. Peterson sent me photocopies of Owen County, Indiana court records, and Coy D. Roberts of Bloomington, Indiana sent me photocopies of Orange County, Indiana free papers. Forest Hazel shared Jeffries family court records, and Douglas Paterson shared Robins and Pinn family records. Doris Stone sent me photocopies of many of the Surry County, Virginia Free Negro records. Scott Wilds shared Darlington District, South Carolina records, and William and Carolyn Adams shared court records for the Beckett family.
ABBREVIATIONS AND NOTES ON THE TEXT
North Carolina Archives stack file number
Journal of Negro History
Loose papers at the county courthouse
Microfilm of the Revolutionary War pension files at the National Archives
Maryland Hall of Records
North Carolina Genealogical Society Journal
North Carolina Historical Review
Order book for the county court of pleas and quarter sessions
Personal Property Tax Lists on microfilm at the Library of Virgina
Secretary of State records at the North Carolina Archives
Treasurer and Controller's files at the North Carolina State Archives
VA:, NC:, etc.
Federal census records for the state. Page number is for the printed version of the census in 1790 and the microfilm of the original for all other years.
Virginia Magazine of History
Wills, etc. Orders
Sources are referenced in square brackets within the text in abbreviated format. The full citations are in the list of sources at the end of the book.
Arabic numbers indicate the position of each biography within a family history, similar to the Record System. Superscripts after first names indicate the order of birth of individuals with the same first name.
Lower case Roman numerals identify a person's children by birth order. A question mark before the name of a person in a child-list indicates that they are included in the list by best guess based on the available information.
Free African Americans are identified by printing their family names in bold except in their own family history.
The author will answer inquiries on any families.
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