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 POWHATAN COUNTY, VIRGINIA

LARGEST SLAVEHOLDERS FROM 1860 SLAVE CENSUS SCHEDULES

and

SURNAME MATCHES FOR AFRICAN AMERICANS ON 1870 CENSUS

 

Transcribed by Tom Blake, August 2003

 

PURPOSE. Published information giving names of slaveholders and numbers of slaves held is almost non-existent. It is possible to locate an ancestor on a U.S. census for 1860 or earlier and not realize that ancestor was also listed as a slaveholder on the slave schedules, because published indexes almost always do not include the slave census. 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 would have been counted 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 the largest holders will enable naming of the holders of the most slaves with the least amount of transcription work. Surname matching of slaveholders with 1870 African Americans is intended merely as suggesting another possibility for further research by those seeking to make connections between slaves and holders.

 

SOURCES. The 1860 U.S. Census Slave Schedules for Powhatan County, Virginia (NARA microfilm series M653, Roll 1395) reportedly includes a total of 5,403 slaves. This transcription includes 76 slaveholders who held 20 or more slaves in Powhatan County, accounting for 2,879 slaves, or about 53% of the County total. The rest of the slaves in the County were held by a total of 299 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 Powhatan County, the number of slaves they held in the County and the first page number on which they were listed. The page numbers used are the numbers rubber stamped in the upper right corner of every other page of the census, with the intervening pages being reported here with a B added to the number of the preceding page. No local districts were shown on the enumeration. 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.

 

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 Virginia in 1860 there were 641 farms of 1,000 acres or more, the largest size category enumerated in the census, and another 2,882 farms of 500-999 acres. Linking names of plantations in this County with the names of the large holders on this list 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, out of a total of 3,950,546 slaves, and the transcriber, though not specifically looking for such named slaves, did not notice any such information while doing this transcription. 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 Powhatan County population included 2,580 whites, 409 “free colored” and 5,403 slaves. By the 1870 census, the white population had stayed about the same at 2,552, while the “colored” population had decreased about 12 % to 5,115. (As a side note, by 1960, 100 years later, the County was listed as having 4,071 whites, about a 58% increase, while the 1960 total of 2,674 “Negroes”was only about half of what the colored population had been 100 years before.) In comparing census data for different years, the transcriber was not aware of any relevant changes to County boundaries.

 

Where did the freed slaves go if they did not stay in the same County? Between 1860 and 1870, the Virginia colored population declined by about 36,000, to approximately 513,000, a 6.5% decrease. Two Virginia Counties that showed a significant increase in colored population between 1860 and 1870 were Henrico, with an increase of over 7,000, and Norfolk, with an increase of over 10,000. States that saw significant increases in colored population during that time, and were therefore possible places of relocation for colored persons from Powhatan County, included the following: Georgia, up 80,000 (17%); Texas, up 70,000 (38%); Alabama, up 37,000 (8%); Florida, up 29,000 (46%); North Carolina, up 38,000 (8%); Ohio, up 26,000 (70%); Indiana, up 25,000 (127%); and Kansas up from 265 to 17,000 (6,400%).

 

SLAVEHOLDER LIST:

 

ARCHER, Robt. P., 44 slaves, page 570B

BALL, Isham, 28 slaves, page 539

BARLEY, James, 20 slaves, page 554B

BARR, Robert, 20 slaves, page 551B

BAUGH, Ed. H., 23 slaves, page 564B

BRADLEY, Geo. T., 25 slaves, page 563

BROWN, Daniel H., 22 slaves, page 545B

BROWN, Daniel, 30 slaves, page 545

BURWELL, Blair, 92 slaves, page 544

CLEGG, Hilary, 31 slaves, page 556

COCKE, John B., 34 slaves, page 556B

COCKE, Philip St. Geo., 125 slaves, page 561B

COCKE, T. L. P., 25 slaves, page 546

COLEMAN, John, 22 slaves, page 547

COX?, Albert H.?, 24 slaves, page 557

CROWDER, Merdith, 25 slaves, page 568

CRUMP, Wd? Wm. Crump, 26 slaves, page 542

DABNEY, Robert, 53 slaves, page 559

DABNEY, Wm. Pope, 55 slaves, page 561

DEPP, Gustavus, 30 slaves, page 568B

DORSET, Samuel, 21 slaves, page 558

EANES, Wm. O., 20 slaves, page 564B

FINCH, Jas. M., 61 slaves, page 540B

FRAZIER, Albert, 25 slaves, page 545

GEE, Charles C., 53 slaves, page 571B

GILLIAM, Catherine, 56 slaves, page 555B

GOODMAN, Meriwether, 62 slaves, page 541

HARRIS, Henry P., 22 slaves, page 544B

HARRIS, Hilary, 51 slaves, page 549

HARRIS, James M., 43 slaves, page 557B

HARRIS, John B., 59 slaves, page 549

HASKINS?, R. & P. L., 23 slaves, page 551

HATCHER, Danl., 48 slaves, page 565B

HOBSON, Jno. H., 26 slaves, page 543

HOBSON, Mrs. M., Jos.? V. Hobson Exc of, 22 slaves, page 543

HOBSON, Virginia, 44 slaves, page 548

HOLMAN, John H., 23 slaves, page 571B

HOSKINS?, R. & J., 28 slaves, page 552B

HURT, John B., 29 slaves, page 541

JETER,John, 47 slaves, page 543B

JONES, R. T., 28 slaves, page 563B

LAPRADE, D., 29 slaves, page 567B

LEIGH, E. G., 23 slaves, page 549B

LIGON, Jos. S., 25 slaves, page 563

LIGON?, Wm., 21 slaves, page 552

MAXEY, Bennet, 26 slaves, page 565

MCCAW, Matilda, 26 slaves, page 568

MCLAURINE, Lewis, 34 slaves, page 541B

MICHAUX, Jacob, 35 slaves, page 570

MICHAUX, Miller, 29 slaves, page 570B

MICHAUX, Wm. W., 182 slaves, page 569

MOORE, Robert, 23 slaves, page 546B

MORRISON, Mary G., 27 slaves, page 551

NOBLE, John E., 20 slaves, page 557B

OLD, William, 40 slaves, page 552B

OLD, Wm., 26 slaves, page 552

PALMORE, Benjamin, 21 slaves, page 545B

PALMORE, Judith, 35 slaves, page 546

PORTER, Geo. A., 27 slaves, page 553B

ROYALL, Wm. E., 25 slaves, page 557

SCOTT, Edward Sr., 43 slaves, page 553

SCOTT, Edwrad Jr., 45 slaves, page 553

SELDEN, Charles, 48 slaves, page 558

SELDEN, Miles C.?, 126 slaves, page 560B, 561 & 562B

SKELTON, Dr. John, 47 slaves, page 550

SKIPWORTH, Mary, 38 slaves, page 540B

SPEARS, Thomas A., 22 slaves, page 550

SUBLETT, Jno., 23 slaves, page 561

SWANN, Geo., 25 slaves, page 545B

TALLY?, Madison, 22 slaves, page 555

TATUM, Wm. P., 30 slaves, page 543

THRIFT, Robert, 26 slaves, page 560B, 561 & 563

TURPIN, Wm. A., 62 slaves, page 555

WATKINS, Wm. M., 20 slaves, page 559

WHITLOCK, James M., 35 slaves, page 547B

WINFREE, William, 48 slaves, page 554

 

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)

 

ARCHER, 358, 98, 13, 139, 97, 13

BALL, 797, 207, 0, 297, 205, 0

BARLEY, 79, 13, 0, 25, 13, 0

BARR, 190, 3, 0, 17, 3, 0

BAUGH, 151, 34, 0, 46, 34, 0

BRADLEY, 1305, 113, 3, 219, 112, 3

BROWN, 27013, 3601, 78, 6106, 3513, 77

BURWELL, 238, 135, 0, 147, 129, 0

CLEGG, 47, 2, 0, 2, 2, 0

COCKE, 37, 9, 0, 13, 9, 0

COLEMAN, 4329, 932, 7, 1515, 922, 7

COX?, 2288, 370, 16, 559, 355, 16

CROWDER, 253, 38, 2, 68, 38, 2

CRUMP, 515, 168, 6, 221, 167, 6

DABNEY, 337, 219, 1, 255, 219, 1

DEPP, 35, 1, 0, 8, 1, 0

DORSET, 9, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0

EANES, 17, 6, 0, 8, 6, 0

FINCH, 231, 19, 0, 30, 19, 0

FRAZIER, 967, 84, 0, 159, 82, 0

GEE, 296, 82, 0, 116, 82, 0

GILLIAM, 311, 131, 3, 139, 130, 3

GOODMAN, 458, 76, 3, 113, 62, 3

HARRIS, 11315, 1877, 74, 2995, 1847, 74

HASKINS?, 353, 150, 1, 187, 148, 1

HATCHER, 397, 106, 0, 129, 104, 0

HOBSON, 299, 100, 14, 131, 100, 14

HOLMAN, 278, 28, 3, 48, 28, 3

HOSKINS?, 158, 25, 1, 47, 24, 1

HURT, 398, 896, 0, 121, 84, 09

JETER, 313, 96, 0, 104, 96, 0

JONES, 27193, 3894, 38, 6648, 3807, 38

LAPRADE, 5, 0, 0, 1, 0, 0

LEIGH, 145, 60, 0, 69, 58, 0

LIGON, 137, 50, 14, 63, 50, 14

MAXEY, 140, 7, 0, 19, 7, 0

MCCAW, 28, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0

MCLAURINE, 7, 0, 0, 4, 0, 0

MICHAUX, 33, 20, 8, 20, 20, 8

MOORE, 8698, 722, 0, 1434, 697, 0

MORRISON, 751, 59, 0, 119, 57, 0

NOBLE, 268, 17, 0, 41, 15, 0

OLD, 76, 22, 1, 27, 22, 1

PALMORE, 52, 9, 3, 13, 9, 3

PORTER, 2334, 196, 2, 375, 193, 2

ROYALL, 39, 24, 0, 28, 24, 0

SCOTT, 8407, 1609, 20, 2560, 1588, 0

SELDEN, 51, 29, 0, 36, 29, 0

SKELTON, 39, 5, 0, 7, 5, 0

SKIPWORTH, 9, 3, 1, 3, 3, 1

SPEARS, 326, 39, 0, 68, 38, 0

SUBLETT, 44, 5, 2, 7, 5, 2

SWANN, 179, 38, 3, 52, 36, 3

TALLY?, 194, 18, 0, 38, 18, 0

TATUM, 273, 29, 0, 54, 29, 0

THRIFT, 14, 3, 0, 5, 3, 0

TURPIN, 143, 41, 0, 51, 41, 0

WATKINS, 2226, 509, 8, 764, 504, 8

WHITLOCK, 121, 17, 1, 37, 17, 1

WINFREE, 44, 34, 1, 36, 34, 1

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