AfriGeneas World Research Forum
Re: Tracing Persons Passing for White
In Response To: Re: Tracing Persons Passing for White ()
We recently discovered that my husband's grandmother had "passed". We had no idea that there was any African heritage in my husband's background. He and his deceased mother appear like very pale European's with blue eyes. Everyone that could, if they would, answer any questions is long dead. Most of his grandmother's relatives that appear European in the old photographs but his grandmother tended to scissor out anyone in a photo that she wanted to erase (ex-husbands etc.) so we don't know who is missing from those scalloped edges. Some of them change their racial designation over the years in the censuses from black to mulatto and then to white. My husband's grandmother appears in no census after she reached age 15 where she was listed as mulatto. Her mother is listed as mulatto and her grandmother as both black and mulatto depending on the census. I would love any advice on how to trace surnames of people of mixed background. My husband had been told all the other relatives were dead by 1910. Should I look for planatation owners of the same name? Is there a convention for the surnames of former slaves? Some of his people appear in some of the censuses as early as 1840 as free mulatto people in New Orleans. At least one was born on a plantation but is listed on the inventory as a mulatto. I even find some listed as born in France but listing themselves as mulattos or black. Any suggestions on where to start would be greatly appreciated.
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