AfriGeneas Military Research Forum
How did he get to Jackson Co., AL?
I am researching the ancestors and descendants of Orange Martin, born Mar 1841, in Jackson Co., AL.
Orange and his wife, Lizzie, were slaves in Desha County, AR, where they lived until around 1905. Their first two children were born in Desha County before Orange's service in the Civil War.
I found Orange's service record in the United States Colored Troops at Ancestry. From his service record summary I found online, I knew that he served in the 17th US Colored Infantry, Company I. He went in as a private - he was a company musician - and later, through Order of the Secretary of Defense, he served in the 42nd US Colored Infantry. He mustered out on 31 Jan 1866, and his rank then was corporal.
But I thought he joined up at Little Rock or Memphis, both of which were fairly accessible in terms of travel from Desha County. He didn't.
His enlistment form says he enlisted on 21 Nov 1863 at Stevenson, Alabama. It also says he was born in Jackson County, Alabama. His occupation is listed as "farmer."
Stevenson, AL is in Jackson County. Now I have to wonder. . .did he go home to see his folks before he signed up? Just in case. . .
And if he did, how did he do that? In 1863, unless the US Army provided the transportation, for Orange Martin to just walk off the planation in Desha County and head out for Alabama would likely have made him a runaway slave.
I cannot find any answers to this question - the "how" of the situation online - and it wasn't covered in my American history courses aeons ago when I was in school.
Does anyone else have any insight?
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