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THOMAS COUNTY, GEORGIA

LARGEST SLAVEHOLDERS FROM 1860 SLAVE CENSUS SCHEDULES

and

SURNAME MATCHES FOR AFRICAN AMERICANS ON 1870 CENSUS

Transcribed by Tom Blake, February, 2002

PURPOSE. Published information giving names of slaveholders and numbers of slaves held in Thomas County, Georgia, in 1860, is either non-existent or not readily available. It is possible to locate a free person on the Thomas County, Georgia census for 1860 and not know whether that person was also listed as a slaveholder on the slave census, because published indexes almost always do not include the slave census.

Those who have found a free ancestor on the 1860 Thomas County, Georgia census can check this list to learn if their ancestor was one of the larger slaveholders in the County. If the ancestor is not on this list, the 1860 slave census microfilm can be viewed to find out whether the ancestor was a holder of a fewer number of slaves or not a slaveholder at all. Whether or not the ancestor is found to have been a slaveholder, a viewing of the slave census will provide an informed sense of the extent of slavery in the ancestral County, particularly for those who have never viewed a slave census. An ancestor not shown to hold slaves on the 1860 slave census could have held slaves on an earlier census, so those films can be checked also. In 1850, the slave census was also separate from the free census, but in earlier years it was a part of the free census.

African American descendants of persons who were enslaved in Thomas County, Georgia in 1860, if they have an idea of the surname of the slaveholder, can check this list for the surname. If the surname is found, they can then view the microfilm for the details listed regarding the sex, age and color of the slaves. If the surname is not on this list, the microfilm can be viewed to see if there were smaller slaveholders with that surname. To check a master surname list for other States and Counties, return to Home and Links Page.

The information on surname matches of 1870 African Americans and 1860 slaveholders is intended merely to provide data for consideration by those seeking to make connections between slaveholders and former slaves. Particularly in the case of these larger slaveholders, the data seems to show in general not many freed slaves in 1870 were using the surname of their 1860 slaveholder. However, the data should be checked for the particular surname to see the extent of the matching.

The last U.S. census slave schedules were enumerated by County in 1860 and included 393,975 named persons holding 3,950,546 unnamed slaves, or an average of about ten slaves per holder. The actual number of slaveholders may be slightly lower because some large holders held slaves in more than one County and they would have been counted as a separate slaveholder in each County. Excluding slaves, the 1860 U.S. population was 27,167,529, with about 1 in 70 being a slaveholder. It is estimated by this transcriber that in 1860, slaveholders of 200 or more slaves, while constituting less than 1 % of the total number of U.S. slaveholders, or 1 out of 7,000 free persons, held 20-30% of the total number of slaves in the U.S. The process of publication of slaveholder names beginning with larger slaveholders will enable naming of the holders of the most slaves with the least amount of transcription work.

SOURCES. The 1860 U.S. Census Slave Schedules for Thomas County, Georgia (NARA microfilm series M653, Roll 152) reportedly includes a total of 6,244 slaves. This transcription includes 96 slaveholders who held 20 or more slaves in Thomas County, accounting for 4,242 slaves, or 68% of the County total. The rest of the slaves in the County were held by a total of 307 slaveholders, and those slaveholders have not been included here. Due to variable film quality, handwriting interpretation questions and inconsistent counting and page numbering methods used by the census enumerators, interested researchers should view the source film personally to verify or modify the information in this transcription for their own purposes. Census data for 1860 was obtained from the Historical United States Census Data Browser, which is a very detailed, searchable and highly recommended database that can found at http://fisher.lib.virginia.edu/census/ . Census data on African Americans in the 1870 census was obtained using Heritage Quest's CD "African-Americans in the 1870 U.S. Federal Census", available through Heritage Quest at http://www.heritagequest.com/ .

FORMAT. This transcription lists the names of those largest slaveholders in the County, the number of slaves they held and the first census page on which they were listed. The page numbers used are the rubber stamped numbers in the upper right corner of every set of two pages, with the previous stamped number and a "B" being used to designate the pages without a stamped number. Unfortunately, the census for Thomas County was filmed in reverse order, starting from the last page and moving to the first page; however, each individual slave was numbered, which helps in tracking the counts. The space for the name of one holder of 25 slaves, on page 144B, was left blank. Following the holder list is a separate list of the surnames of the holders with information on numbers of African Americans on the 1870 census who were enumerated with the same surname. The term "County" is used to describe the main subdivisions of the State by which the census was enumerated.

TERMINOLOGY. Though the census schedules speak in terms of "slave owners", the transcriber has chosen to use the term "slaveholder" rather than "slave owner", so that questions of justice and legality of claims of ownership need not be addressed in this transcription. Racially related terms such as African American, black, mulatto and colored are used as in the source or at the time of the source, with African American being used otherwise.

PLANTATION NAMES. Plantation names were not shown on the census. Using plantation names to locate ancestors can be difficult because the name of a plantation may have been changed through the years and because the sizeable number of large farms must have resulted in lots of duplication of plantation names. In Georgia in 1860 there were 482 farms of 1,000 acres or more, the largest size category enumerated in the census, and another 1,359 farms of 500-999 acres. Linking names of plantations in this County with the names of the large holders on this list should not be a difficult research task, but it is beyond the scope of this transcription.

FORMER SLAVES. The 1860 U.S. Census was the last U.S. census showing slaves and slaveholders. Slaves were enumerated in 1860 without giving their names, only their sex and age and indication of any handicaps, such as deaf or blind Slaves 100 years of age or older were supposed to be named on the 1860 slave schedule, but there were only 1,570 slaves of such age enumerated, and, though not specifically searching for such slaves, the transcriber noticed none in this County for the holders transcribed, except for 100 year old male Andrew, held by Thos. Adams on page 1409, and 105 year old female Rachel, born in Maryland and held by K. Braswell on page 140. Freed slaves, if listed in the next census, in 1870, would have been reported with their full name, including surname. Some of these former slaves may have been using the surname of their 1860 slaveholder at the time of the 1870 census and they may have still been living in the same State or County. Before presuming an African American was a slave on the 1860 census, the free census for 1860 should be checked, as almost 11% of African Americans were enumerated as free in 1860, with about half of those living in the southern States. Estimates of the number of former slaves who used the surname of a former owner in 1870, vary widely and from region to region. If an African American ancestor with one of these surnames is found on the 1870 census, then making the link to finding that ancestor as a slave requires advanced research techniques involving all obtainable records of the holder.

MIGRATION OF FORMER SLAVES: According to U.S. Census data, the 1860 Thomas County population included 4,488 whites, 34 "free colored" and 6,244 slaves. By the 1870 census, the white population had increased about 37% to 6160, while the "colored" population increased about 33% to 8,363. (As a side note, by 1960, 100 years later, the County was listed as having 20,117 whites, about four and a half times more than in 1860, while the 1960 total of 14,189 "Negroes"was about two and a quarter times more than what the colored population had been 100 years before.) It should be noted however, that in comparing census data for 1870 and 1960, the transcriber did not take into consideration any relevant changes in county boundaries.

Where did the freed slaves go if they did not stay in Thomas County? Chatham County saw an increase in colored population of almost two thirds between 1860 and 1870, so obviously that is where many freed slaves went. Other Georgia Counties showing significant increases include Fulton, Houston and Richmond. Between 1860 and 1870, the Georgia colored population increased by 80,000, to 545,000, a 17% increase. Where did freed Georgia slaves go if they did not stay in Georgia? States that saw significant increases in colored population during that time, and were therefore more likely possible places of relocation for colored persons from Thomas County, included the following: Texas, up 70,000 (38%); Alabama, up 37,000 (8%); North Carolina, up 31,000 (8%); Florida, up 27,000 (41%); Ohio, up 26,000 (70%); Indiana, up 25,000 (127%); and Kansas up from 265 to 17,000 (6,400%).

SLAVEHOLDER LIST:

ADAMS, Thos., 64 slaves, page 149

ALEXANDER, J. R., 20 slaves, page 150

ALEXANDER, J. A., 20 slaves, page 136B

ANDERSON, M., 24 slaves, page 158

ATKINSON, M., 35 slaves, page 138

BIVAN, G., 47 slaves, page 146

BLACKSHEAR, H., 38 slaves, page 139B

BLACKSHEAR, T. E. for another, 111 slaves, page 139B

BLACKSHEAR, T. E., 44 slaves, page 140B

BLEWITT, C.? W., 33 slaves, page 145

BRASTRUE?, Kindred, 20 slaves, page 166B

BRASWELL, K., 81 slaves, page 140

BROWNING, J. C., 33 slaves, page 142

BRUCE, B. J., 33 slaves, page 1132

BRYAN, E., 30 slaves, page 165B

BURCH, R. S., 22 slaves, page 157B

BURTON, J. R., 21 slaves, page 150B

CARSWELL, A. B., 75 slaves, page 161

DEKLE, Leb, 31 slaves, page 167

DIXON, C., 31 slaves, page 155B

EDWARDS, J. Q., 24 slaves, page 158B

EVANS, J. R.?, 73 slaves, page 162B

EVERITT, A. F., 31 slaves, page 154

EVERITT, J. B., 30 slaves, page 153B

EVERITT, J. J., 54 slaves, page 153

FUTCH, John, 23 slaves, page 164

GORDON, Est. J. C.?, 202 slaves, page 132

HADLEY, S. D., 50 slaves, page 160B

HADLEY, S. D. for others, 89 slaves, page 160

HALL, B. D., 20 slaves, page 146B

HAMMONS, H. 23 slaves, page 168

HARDAWAY, R. H. for another?, 26 slaves, page 165

HAYES, Mary, 37 slaves, page 143

HAYS, Jas. T., 99 slaves, page 148

HAYS, Wm. E., 31 slaves, page 142B

HEARD, Wm. J., 22 slaves, page 147

HEATH, R. W., 55 slaves, page 165

HOLLAND, E., 22 slaves, page 162

HORN, L.? A., 23 slaves, page 137

HOWEL, J. C., 24 slaves, page 149

HURST, J. J. for another, 61 slaves, page 134

IRWIN, M., 92 slaves, page 135B

IVY, Robt., 27 slaves, page 136B

JONES, E. A., 88 slaves, page 141B

JONES, Thos., 55 slaves, page 156B

LANE, J. A., 53 slaves, page 158

LAWTON, A. B., 69 slaves, page 152

LINTON, B. F., 36 slaves, page 152B

LINTON, Moses, 79 slaves, page 152B

MADOX, J. J., 21 slaves, page 133B

MASH?, J. J., 42 slaves, page 140B

MASSEY, J., 23 slaves, page 155B

MCCAN, J. 26 slaves, page 158

MCINTYRE, A. T., 84 slaves, page 135

MCLEAN, C. C., 35 slaves, page 155

MCMILLAN, A., 59 slaves, page 159B

MERCER, John for another, 33 slaves, page 161B

MILLER, J., 20 slaves, page 136B

MITCHELL, G. W., 20 slaves, page 167B

MITCHELL, J. W., 59 slaves, page 157

MITCHELL, T. C., 120 slaves, page 1133

MITCHELL, Thos. G., 22 slaves, page 149B

MUNROE, M., 31 slaves, page 143

NEAL, Elijah, 41 slaves, page 154

NEELY, J. S., 39 slaves, page 156

PARKMAN?, N., 63 slaves, page 159

PARTAIN, E., 23 slaves, page 151

PEUGH, Thos., 23V45B

PRATT, J. W., 87 slaves, page 133B

RAINES, R., 61 slaves, page 138

REY, Duncan, 29 slaves, page 135B

REYNOLDS, Wm. H., 61 slaves, page 130

ROBERTS, Est. D., 41 slaves, page 151

RODENBERRY, R., 31 slaves, page 166B

SEWARD, Jas. L., 64 slaves, page 130B

SLATER, John, 50 slaves, page 144

SMITH, S. A., 22 slaves, page 168B

STEEL, Thos., 30 slaves, page 148B

STEGALL, Wm., 31 slaves, page 147

STONE, B. J. & four? Others, 21 slaves, page 156

SWIFT, S. 40 slaves, page 164B

TERRIL, J. S., 25 slaves, page 144B

THOMPSON, E., 25 slaves, page 145

TILMON, C., 20 slaves, page 152

TURNER, Jas., 38 slaves, page 150B

VANN, A., 24 slaves, page 146

WALKER?, E.? & John, 49 slaves, page 166

WINN, E., 47 slaves, page 145B

WRIGHT, R. S., 23 slaves, page 138

WYCKE, Littleton, 35 slaves, page 150

WYCKE, T. C., 44 slaves, page 154B

WYCKE, T.? H., 54 slaves, page 142

YOUNG, E. J., 31 slaves, page 136

YOUNG, John for another, 85 slaves, page 137B

YOUNG, T., 34 slaves, page 134B

YOUNG, Wm. J., 25 slaves, page 136B

SURNAME MATCHES AMONG AFRICAN AMERICANS ON 1870 CENSUS:

(exact surname spellings only are reported, no spelling variations or soundex)

(SURNAME, # in US, in State, in County, born in State, born and living in State, born in State and living in County)

ADAMS, 4295, 548, 21, 616, 434, 18

ALEXANDER, 3460, 313, 7, 351, 234, 6

ANDERSON, 8123, 722, 7, 807, 591, 5

ATKINSON, 465, 44, 12, 46, 31, 8

BIVAN, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0

BLACKSHEAR, 123, 85, 14, 91, 80, 111

BLEWITT, 43, 0, 0, 1, 0, 0

BRASTRUE?, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0

BRASWELL, 98, 37, 4, 35, 34, 3

BROWNING, 252, 36, 3, 46, 31, 2

BRUCE, 514, 33, 1, 32, 24, 1

BRYAN, 1098, 158, 4, 176, 129, 3

BURCH, 192, 51, 0, 47, 42, 0

BURTON, 1530, 136, 0, 155, 120, 0

CARSWELL, 92, 89, 0, 86, 85, 0

DEKLE, 13, 10, 1, 10, 9, 1

DIXON, 1757, 174, 3, 198, 143, 3

EDWARDS, 3741, 379, 2, 431, 316, 1

EVANS, 3275, 428, 2, 491, 377, 1

EVERITT, 44, 1, 1, 5, 1, 1

FUTCH, 30, 14, 8, 15, 14, 8

GORDON, 1952, 245, 0, 259., 198, 0

HADLEY, 147, 37, 28, 42, 35, 26

HALL, 5875, 642, 11, 693, 513, 6

HAMMONS, 72, 4, 0, 5, 2, 0

HARDAWAY, 124, 37, 0, 39, 32, 0

HAYES, 561, 48, 4, 60, 43, 3

HAYS, 1315, 85, 3, 109, 60, 3

HEARD, 357, 205, 4, 212, 183, 4

HEATH, 371, 71, 1, 91, 66, 1

HOLLAND, 1301, 143, 4, 162, 114, 3

HORN, 379, 68, 7, 84, 61, 5

HOWEL, 140, 17, 0, 16, 12, 0

HURST, 159, 19, 3, 24, 14, 3

IRWIN, 278, 62, 2, 64, 51, 1

IVY, 224, 50, 0, 60, 50, 0

JONES, 27193, 2842, 46, 31555, 2331, 37

LANE, 1402, 178, 1, 193, 148, 1

LAWTON, 149, 47, 0, 41, 37, 0

LINTON, 86, 19, 4, 18, 16, 2

MADOX, 15, 4, 0, 6, 4, 0

MASH?, 37, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1

MASSEY, 509, 57, 2, 55, 47, 0

MCCAN, 46, 2, 0, 1, 1, 0

MCINTYRE, 139, 9, 3, 12, 7, 3

MCLEAN, 446, 17, 0, 28, 15, 0

MCMILLAN, 367, 20, 1, 22, 12, 0

MERCER, 239, 48, 0, 45, 41, 0

MILLER, 6577, 557, 8, 602, 446, 6

MITCHELL, 4089, 515, 66, 552, 409, 57

MUNROE, 206, 18, 0, 25, 16, 0

NEAL, 1145, 172, 1, 184, 143, 1

NEELY, 274, 26, 3, 27, 16, 1

PARKMAN?, 22, 4, 0, 3, 3, 0

PARTAIN, 2, 0, 0, 2, 0, 0

PEUGH, 1, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0

PRATT, 418, 24, 0, 30, 18, 0

RAINES, 106, 43, 3, 46, 40, 3

REY, 34, 3, 0, 3, 3, 0

REYNOLDS, 1197, 164, 5, 191, 133, 5

ROBERTS, 3309, 5652, 1, 595, 483, 0

RODENBERRY, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0

SEWARD, 96, 8, 1, 5, 5, 0

SLATER, 226, 21, 4, 25, 19, 3

SMITH, 29087, 2625, 28, 2979, 2200, 21

STEEL, 335, 26, 4, 24, 20, 0

STEGALL, 31, 5, 2, 5, 3, 1

STONE, 1070, 102, 1, 119, 91, 1

SWIFT, 187, 38, 0, 43, 33, 0

TERRIL, 37, 3, 0, 3, 3, 0

THOMPSON, 8826, 649, 13, 723, 505, 12

TILMON, 12, 2, 2, 3, 2, 2

TURNER, 5742, 506, 6, 627, 420, 5

VANN, 180, 7, 1, 13, 6, 1

WALKER?, 8492, 199, 13, 1317, 997, 9

WINN, 691, 130, 6, 127, 109, 5

WRIGHT, 5428, 670, 11, 765, 580, 7

WYCKE, 1, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0

YOUNG, 6185, 540, 19, 611, 425, 14

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