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Re: 54th Mass History
In Response To: Re: 54th Mass History ()


Hello to you too. It is good to be seen. Yes, Nelson Adams, a free black man made the trip to Readville and volunteered to serve in the 54th. He, and several free blacks made it from Illinois. The quota for the 54th was filled, so Nelson and the overflow were formed into the 55th. See the below link to: Illinois U. S. Colored Troops Civil War Military Service 1861-1865

Nelson's mother and siblings were kidnapped from Illinois in 1842 and sold into slavery. This was the same year, 1842, that my great grandfather, born 1833, was deeded as a gift, along with his brother and sister in Copiah County, Mississippi.

Nelson, the oldest, armed with a shotgun, approached a man in Illinois demanding to know what happened to his mother and the children. Nelson and another man were arrested. They were tried, found guilty, and sentenced to Illinois State Penitentiary in Alton, Illinois. Nelson's father, who was not with Nelson at the time of the incident, was arrested and also sent to the prison.

A former slave, Lewis Adams, was interviewed in 1928-1930. Lewis stated he was born 1824 in Illinois, kidnapped, and taken to Texas with his mother and brothers by a man named Bob Kuykendall. Lewis was sold a couple of times and ended up in Copiah County, Mississippi.

Nelson Adams' mother and siblings were kidnapped by Lewis Kuykendall and his sons John and Bob. John Crenshaw was also involved and he stood trial in Illinois for the kidnapping.

I went to Springfield, Illinois and did some research. There is still a lot of work to do. I lost track of Nelson after he was mustered out in South Carolina in 1865. Some of the troops were taken by ship to Boston where they were dismissed, while others enlisted in a cavalry unit and went out west.

Ed Adams

Messages In This Thread

54th Mass History
Re: 54th Mass History
Re: 54th Mass History
Re: 54th Mass History

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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