MS Roots

December 19, 2011

1860 Slave Schedules – SB Hathorn

Filed under: african american genealogy,Covington County, MS,Hathorn — by tmailhes @ 3:32 pm

Slaves owned by SB Hathorn - deceased

This is the listing for SB Hathorn on the 1860 Federal Census – Slave Schedule. Slaves Schedules always frustrate me. A collection of ages, gender, race and a lot of guess work on my part. I draw a conclusion and then try to track down supporting information. Thankfully, I have almost decoded this listing for SB Hathorn.

45 M Black – Randall Hathorn (sold to John McRany) found in 1870 household with Elizabeth and Ann Hathorn
40 F Black – Elizabeth / Betsy Hathorn (sold to Mary E. Hathorn) found in 1870 household with Randall and Ann Hathorn
34 F Black – Lucy (sold to Loyed Polk) found in 1870 household with Elam and Allen Hathorn
30 F Mul – Mahala Hathorn (not sold) My 3rd great-grandmother
24 M Black – Steve (sold to Thomas Pope) not found yet
16 F Black – Charity (sold to HA McLeod) not found yet
11 F Black – Jane Hathorn (sold to Mary E. Hathorn) found in 1870 household with Reddoch, Rich and Zana Hathorn; this family would take the last name Thompson by 1880; Rich and Zana were born free
11 M Black – Henry (sold to Moses Pfeifer) not found yet
8 F Black – Margaret (sold to JH Bass) not found yet
7 F Black – Ann Hathorn (sold to Mary E. Hathorn) found in 1870 household with Randall and Betsey Hathorn; possibly listed twice in census; Ann Hathorn is also listed last in the household of Isaac and Mahala Hathorn
7 F Black – Zana Hathorn (not sold) Mahala’s daughter
6 M Black – William “Bill” Hathorn (not sold) My 2nd great-grandfather
6 M Black – Jim (sold to SJ Harper Jr.) not found yet
4 F Black – Matilda Hathorn (not sold) Mahala’s daughter
x F Black – I believe this is Little Isaac as explained in the Estate Record of SB Hathorn and that F was incorrectly notated.

I’m waiting for additional film that I won’t have access to until after the holidays. There should be a case in Covington County that explains why my Hathorns couldn’t be sold. And since I’m waiting, I’ll try to track down the other slaves belonging to SB Hathorn. I’ll also begin plotting SB Hathorn’s life to locate additional information about Mahala. I once thought this journey was near impossible but I’m beginning to think that it can done.

**Please pass this along to any geneafriends researching any of the surnames listed in this post**

December 17, 2011

Estate of SB Hathorn – 2 November 1860

Filed under: african american genealogy,Covington County, MS,Hathorn — by tmailhes @ 9:13 pm

Finally, I received a roll of film of Probate Records from Marion County, MS. There was a notation in a book of abstracts of wills from Covington County stating that SB Hathorn had died intestate and that additional documentation could be found in Marion County. I was hoping for a mention of my 3rd great-grandmother, Mahala, in the documentation.
Here’s what I found:
The petition of AS Harper administrator of the Estate of SB Hathorn late of Covington County deceased; shows that his intestate died possessed of sixteen Negro slaves (Five of which cannot be sold owing to a suit pending in the chancery court of Covington County Miss, in which the title to said five Negro slaves is in controvercy [sic] (to wit;, Mahala, Zana, Bill, Matilda and Little Isaac,) leaving a balance of eleven Negro slaves…
I was so excited to find not only Mahala but there is Bill, who is my 2nd great-grandfather. I will spend this afternoon cross referencing data in the 1850 and 1860 census with the names found in the estate of SB Hathorn.
The other eleven slaves are named as follows:
Woman Betsy sold to Mary E Hathorn
Girl Jane sold to Mary E Hathorn
Man Randal sold to John McRany
Woman Lucy sold to Loyed Polk
Man Steve sold to Thomas Pope
Woman Charity sold to H A McLeod
Boy Henry sold to Moses Pfeifer
Boy Elum sold to SJ Harper
Girl Ann sold to Mary E Hathorn
Girl Margaret sold to J H Bass
Boy Jim sold to SJ Harper, Jr.

November 19, 2011

Zana Hathorn found in Lawrence County, MS

Zanie Hathorn Entry

I needed to get reorganized in my search for Mahala Hathorn. I had gotten sidetracked with other family searches and writing about genealogy. Mahala was still as she was at the beginning of the year – a labor contract with unidentified persons signed with N.C. Hathorn. So I set about this past week to review her information and revise my research plan.

Sidetracked again – a clue about Zana Hathorn. An alert on my Family Tree Maker dashboard showed that someone had linked the 1870 Census for Zana Hathorn to Zanie Hawthorne in their family tree. I tried not to click the link. I knew where this was going to lead.

A little background – Zana Hathorn was listed in the 1870 census in the home of Isaac and Mahala Hathorn. She was 17 at the time. I had been unsuccessful in finding her after this census. I also knew that in 1900, Mahala and Isaac would be the caregivers for two children – John and Anna Holloway. The three candidates for their mother were – Zana, Ann or Matilda.

Clicking the link – Zana Hathorn was listed as being married to Henry Thomas. She was found in the 1900, 1910 and 1920 census in Lawrence County. Still missing though was information about her whereabouts after 1870 to 1900. Per one of the family trees, Zana Hathorn had children prior to her marriage. I then went to the Lawrence County Enumeration of Educable Children found on Familysearch.org and found her in 1892 with 3 children – Lear, Vandy? and Willie. Willie Hathorn would become Willie Thomas. The other two are still unknown.

Making the decision – I have decided not to follow Zana for the moment. I have written her here so that I will not forget and plan to revisit her next year if I have finished with Mahala. So till next year, Miss Zana Hathorn.

August 8, 2011

Memories of Papa

I speak with my cousin Comel Hawthorn (she is a Hathorn who married a Hawthorn) about once a month to catch up about family in Prentiss, MS.  I share information that I have found on the family and more often than not she tells me that whatever I’ve found can’t possibly be right.  Today, I got her good!  She is waiting for me to send this information to her and has told me that her retired sister will  follow up on research.

The information – A Freedmen’s Bureau Contract listing our 4th great-grandmother being given one acre of land by N.C. Hathorn along with 4 other adults and 1 dependent adult.  The dependent adult was Sanco Hathorn, enslaved son of N. C. Hathorn.  The other adults all mulattoes would also take the name of Hathorn.  I told Comel about my conversation with the 3rd great-granddaughter of N.C. Hathorn and that everyone knew that Sanco was his son.  The location of N.C. Hathorn’s other enslaved children was not known.  I told her that the other children may have been those listed in the contract including our Myhalia Hathorn.

Comel was silent before saying, “I don’t know if the other children will say this, but I was always a little scared of the way that Papa looked.  His hair was what you would call wavy.  And his eyes were light colored.  Hazel, I guess we would say now.  Though I think they were green.  He had light skin lighter than your Aunt Elna who looked most like him.  We didn’t associate with White people when I was growing up so one day when a White man came over to talk to Papa about something.  I asked if that man was kin.  He looked more like Papa than anyone else.  I was told to hush up because that was a White man.  But he looked like Papa – same coloring, same hair, same eyes.  I wonder if we ain’t related to those White Hathorns?

Proof?  I don’t know if we’ll get it.  I just don’t know if there is any document out there that will tell us the reason that N.C. Hathorn chose 5 adult slaves to give an acre of land after Emancipation.

July 3, 2011

Surname Saturday – Sorting through the GRIFFITHS

When I finally uncovered my great-grandmother’s parents, I found a Griffith married to a Griffith. This week has been dedicated to sorting through the Griffiths and trying to find a filing system that will keep the two lines distinct in my mind and on paper.

Idella Griffith’s parents were Isom (Isam, Isham) GRIFFITH and Mira (Myra) GRIFFITH. Her siblings were:
Eliza m. R.A. BLOUNT; Nathan; Ophelia; Ada; Oliver; Fronie; Willie; and James (1893 – 1967) m. Hattie MCNAIR.

Contained in the orange binder is the family of Isom Griffith:
Father: Orange Griffith born in Mississippi
Mother: Icy born in Kentucky
Siblings: Elvira, Norvel, Alfred, Lucy, Milly
Griffiths of Kentucky – Searching through records for Hiram Griffith who settled in Covington County in the 1830s with his wife Icy FOUNTAIN from Caldwell Kentucky.
Freedmen’s Bureau Labor Contract – located a contract for Icy, Elvira, Alfred, Lucy, Milly and Isom bound to Milton Griffith, son of Hiram Griffith of Kentucky.

Contained in the dark blue binder is the family of Mira Griffith:
Father: Dennis Griffith born in Virginia
Mother: Eliza born in Mississippi
Siblings: Isaac; Malley; Harry; Dennis; Sarah; Elizabeth
Unable to locate family in Freedmen’s Bureau contracts. I will have to start with 1860 slave schedules.

I think that even though I have divided the two families into separate binders that I should track them together. The community of Holledays Creek, Mississippi was very small and I doubt that GRIFFITH was chosen randomly as a surname by both families.

May 16, 2011

Agreement with Freedmen made by T.L.H. Caraway

I was very excited today to have unlocked the secret system of the Freemen’s Bureau Labor Contracts located at the Central Dallas Library. I created my very own index using the index from the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. It was a time consuming process, but in the end it was all worth it. After searching through two rolls in Dallas, I was able to match Dallas #49 to Mississippi #2574. All I had to do from there was to count to the correct contract number.
Here are my results:

Agreement with Freedmen made this 7th day of September 1865 by and between T.L.H. Caraway and Jerman & his family and Amanda of Covington and State of Mississippi;…In testimony whereof the said parties have affixed their names to this agreement on the day & date aforesaid and for the purposes specified.
Names Ages Wages
Jerman 33 Food & Clothing
Marinda 30 Food & Clothing
Hariet 11 de
Amanda 21 Food & Clothing

Harriet is my 2nd great grandmother. Jerman and Marinda are my 3rd great-grandparents. I will be searching probate records for a mention of Caraway or Loflin in the surrounding counties.

May 15, 2011

Dinner with James

I was very excited this evening to have dinner with my cousin, James. It was great to be able to speak with a fellow family historian. He shared some wonderful stories with me and I could just hear my mom and grandmother saying those things. It was nice to know that they hadn’t changed from the time he knew them to the time that I knew them.

James is the grandson of my great-grandmother’s brother. He is also the nephew of my great-uncle’s wife. His father’s sister married my grandmother’s brother. I think that makes us double cousins?? We are both not sure about that.

James, however, was able to solve one mystery for me. I remembered a set of twins from my childhood. They were adults when I was born. I remember them because of their names – Big and Lil. I didn’t realize at the time that those were nicknames. I have asked older cousins in the past what their actual names were and had always gotten the same response, “I don’t remember”. James was able to tell me that they were named Rufus (Big) and Rascus (Lil). Both names are derivatives of Rucus, our uncle.

We talked about the families, about their love of laughter and their love for each other. They seemed never to grow tired of one another. We talked about hoping to pass this knowledge of the importance of kinship and laughter to our children.

April 17, 2011

2011 Genealogy Goal #2 – Mahala

My second genealogy goal this year was to take one step back past 1870 for the Hathorns, namely Mahala. I had followed her through the census with various names, a range of ages and fluctuating races. She was recorded as Haley, Holly and Mahala. Her birth year was recorded from 1830 to 1843. Sometimes, she was listed as Black and sometimes she was mulatto. But she there from 1870 to 1910 with a family that I could document.

Last week, I began preparing to research the community of Hollidays Creek as a slave owning community. I had two clues that may lead me to the former owner of Mahala and decided to follow what I had. My first clue was the chosen surname of the family – Hathorn. There were Hathorns listed in the 1860 slave schedule for the near vicinity of Hollidays Creek. My second clue was a Freedmen’s Bureau Labor contract dated 1865 between N.C. Hathorn and several freedmen. The freedmen were listed as follows:

Laborers:
Gerry – 24; Mahala – 22; Lucy – 21; Calvin – 18; Jane – 15; Rachael – 14; Bertro – 12; Ann – 11
Dependents:
Sanco – 26; Henry – 6; Willis – 5; Jack – 4; Unreadable; Easter – 1

The name Sanco stood out for me for two reasons – 1) He was listed with the children and 2) I had seen his name in my review of the 1870 census. Further research found him living in 1870 and 1880 with the family I had identified as the possible slave owners of Mahala. He was also listed in a family tree on ancestry.com. His father was named as N.C. Hathorn. I immediately contacted the owner and received the response below:

Hello. I will be happy to tell you what I know about Sanco. I am not sure of birth or death dates, so the birth date is from the census, and I have really guessed at his death. In 1870 he was living with his half brother, Samuel Baskin Hathorn and they were about the same age. In 1880, he was living with his half sister, Sarah Hathorn & husband James “Jim” Clark. These were my G Grandparents. Apparently, Sanco always knew who his father was and after the Civil War, he refused to leave. My knowledge of him comes from my grandfather, Grover Cleveland Clark, who called him what all the family called him, “Uncle Sanco”, and they knew his story. He lived in the house with them and helped with house chores and Sarah’s children. Remembering the stories my grandfather told of him, leads me to think that he was a “childlike” person. He would get mad about things and expected to go everywhere with the family and to be treated as family. Once he was not envited to a wedding and he was so mad about it. They brought him some of the wedding cake and he would not eat it. He said “I don’t want no old cold cake”. My grandfather would tell this and laugh and laugh.

I never heard anything about a girl friend or relationship, so do not know if he had children. I do not think he ever lived away from the Clarks. As with many Hathorns, he had horrible arthritis and crawled on his knees in later years, unable to walk. ( Sarah also had arthritis and was an invalid, bed-ridden for some years before her death.) They said he used two long cow leg bones for crutchs as they were the right length for him. That was one of the things my Grandfather told–Uncle Sanco would hit them with the bones if they misbehaved, so they tried to stay far enough away to avoid being “disciplined” with the bones. From all that I heard, he really loved Sarah and looked out for her.

After this email, I am now more inspired to research Mahala and our kin. I can’t make any claims now as to the relationship between Mahala and Sanco and the Hathorns and the others listed in the labor contract, but I know that it can be figured out with some work and guiding voices like this one!

April 4, 2011

Finding the Griffiths of Covington County, MS

One of my goals for this year was to complete a narrative sketch of Arthur and Idella Hathorn. They were my great-grandparents. I only have two photographs of them, but the stories of their faith and love of family have provided permanent images in my mind and heart.

Idella Griffith Hathorn was a bit of a mystery. While I knew that she was loved and praised by her daughters and granddaughter as a gentle loving woman. I knew little about her family except that she was a Griffith.

I wasn’t able to locate a family in the census that fit with the age as recorded in the 1910 census for Idella when she was a wife and mother. In the previous census, there was Ida Griffith who seemed too old and Ada Griffith who seemed too young. I wasn’t able to locate a marriage record for Arthur and Idella in Covington County. I ordered Idella’s death certificate and waited.

About two weeks ago, I received Idella’s death record. It listed her parents as Isom Griffith and Mira Smith. The informant was her husband, Arthur Hathorn. She had been listed in the 1900 census as Ida Griffith and that recorded age most closely matched the date of birth recorded on her death certificate. The Griffiths lived a few houses away from the Hathorns and I had seen that record in the census so many times!

I began mapping the Griffith family through census records and checking if any of the records had been saved by anyone else on ancestry.com. The 1900 census record for James Griffith, youngest brother of Idella, had been saved to another family tree. I contacted the owner and found my cousin, James!

We talked about Life…how it keeps going. He had always meant to get back to his small hometown to reconnect with the cousins from his childhood, but Life kept happening. He had attended my uncle’s funeral in 1968, but didn’t make it to my mother’s. He had called her “Sis” his entire life and didn’t know that she was known as Toni. We have made plans to have our families meet in the next two weeks. It will be easy since he lives only 20 minutes away! Life.

February 4, 2011

Finding Focus – Arthur and Idella Hathorn, The Beginning

One of my goals for this year is to write a narrative sketch of Arthur and Idella Hathorn, my maternal great-grandparents. Thanks to the weird north Texas winter storm, I have had four days to organize my thoughts and find focus for the project. I have decided to focus on the beginning of their lives together

The Near Beginning
1910 Federal Census, Beat 1, Jefferson Davis County, MS
Arthur Hathorn H M B 24
Married for 5 Years, Renter, Working, Own Account, Farmer
Farm Schedule #49
Idella Hathorn Wife F B 23
Married for 5 Years, 4 births, 4 children
Clara Hathorn D F B 4
Flucor Hathorn S M B 3
Irma Hathorn D F B 2
Rucus S M B 6/12

The Location
Jefferson Davis County was formed from parts of Covington and Lawrence counties in 1906. The county seat is Prentiss, MS. Prentiss is a rural agriculture community.

The Time Period 1900 – 1920
The Hathorn family would have lived in the midst of the Mississippi’s Jim Crow system and frequent epidemics. Death from disease and lynchings would be a part of life. During the first 20 years of their marriage, the Hathorns would experience WWI and the First Great Migration.

I have decided to start writing even though, there are some questions that need to be answered.
1. Who are Idella’s parents and where is she from?
2. When and where were Arthur and Idella married?
3. How old was Idella?

I have ordered Idella’s death record. Hopefully that will provide the leads to fill in the other questions quickly.

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