AfriGeneas Slave Research Forum
Willis BLACKWELL VA>SC>KS
While looking at old newspapers, I came across an article called, "The Oldest Man in Kansas" about Willis BLACKWELL who reportedly "was born a slave on the plantation of William RUSSELL in Fauquier County, VA, November 20, 1775." He lived there as a house servant until 1805 when sold to Thomas McCLURE of Chester, SC for $450. He remained in Chester until the "great exodus to Kansas in 1877" when he took up eighty acres of excellent land eighteen miles north of Great Bend, [KS]... . He has outlived all his children and "is living with a great-grandneice." . . .He was a delegate to the First "Republican State Convention" of South Carolina after emancipation."
There is more information in the lengthy article and the article also includes a drawing of Mr. Blackwell seated holding his hat and a cane. This article appears in the St. Louis Daily Globe-Democrat, Monday morning 29 Aug 1887.