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AfriGeneas States Research Forum

[AL] Henry, a man who once lived in Marion County

Hello! Rather than looking for information, I have some information that might be of use to someone on this forum.

We have a family story that goes like this:

A young African American named Henry stayed with Matthew and Sarah Emerson at some time. He slept underneath their bed (trundle?). He grew up to be a very large man and became a blacksmith. Henry visited Matthew and Sarah after he was an adult, either at Shottsville, AL, or near Single Springs, AL, (both of which are in Marion County, AL).

I'm guessing, from the dates that we have for Matthew and Sarah, that this could have occurred between 1863 (Sarah would be 20) and 1912 (the year Matthew died).

And that's it. I wish I knew more. Here's a little background on Matthew and Sarah, for what it's worth.

Matthew L. (Little, Liddel, or Littleton) Emerson, born in Lawrence County, AL, to George Emerson (born VA around 1790) and Esther Robinson Emerson (born SC around 1800). We think both families came to Alabama via Tennessee. The Emersons were probably of English descent and the Robinsons of Irish descent. At least in TN and AL, the Emersons do not appear to be slave holders. Some of the Robinsons were slave holders.

Sarah Ann Scott was born in either Alabama or South Carolina to Peter Martin Scott (born NC or TN around 1800) and Jane Williams (born SC or TN around 1805). From DNA tests, we find that at least the paternal side of the Scott family were Native Americans. Jane Williams was half Welsh and half Cherokee (her father was an early missionary to the Native Americans in the colonies). Neither the Scotts nor the Williams were slave holders, to my knowledge. The Scotts fought for the North during the Civil War.

Another little tidbit: Matthew and Sarah adopted a little girl who was a couple of years older than their oldest biological child. Her name was Nancy, her mother was ? Cole, and her father's first name was Dave. She was born in MS, and family tradition says that Nancy's mother "walked a long way" to bring Nancy to Matthew and Sarah. There was a rumor at the time that Nancy was actually Matthew's biological daughter, but I don't know if it is true or not. The point of relaying this information is that Matthew and Sarah seemed to be open to caring for other children. I don't know if this was just their personality, or if there was an actual family connection or obligation that needed to be recognized.

I really hope that this helps someone! If it does and you feel like corresponding, I'd love to hear from you. I would be even more thrilled if we find a family relationship between Henry and Matthew and Sarah. More mysteries solved!

Best wishes,
Jessie Emerson


18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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