|Dry Fork Genealogy
This is a work in progress. Updates will be made as the work is completed. The research work for the early Dry Fork history and genealogy generated a large amount of information. Information through census, deeds, wills, marriage records, etc. was vast and included data useful to other researchers. This is an attempt to make all information found through this project available on-line for families searching their roots or for historians trying to make connections in their research. It may take some time to complete, as there are hundreds of pages of primary documents to pull information out of.
It took time to find a program and figure out how that program would aid us in this quest to put information on line. The Reunion program allows you to search by surname and is a wonderful family history program. The Reunion program will also allow you to list non-related people. Our problem came when we wanted to put on line the various slave lists I found in different primary documents. Slaves did not necessarily have "last names". The solution came when I decided to give them a last name. Individual slaves are listed under the last name field as "Slave of Alexander Saunders" or "Slave of George Ferguson" with their first name. Now you can view those names by clicking on the "S" of the surname index.
This does not mean the individual slave took their master's surname after emancipation just where that person was listed in a particular document at a specific time. If the document states where the individual was placed by will or division of slaves or sale I have listed that information in the occupation field (example, "became a slave of John Ingles Saunders 1852," etc.) I've tried to list all the information I could gather about the slave through the documents. If ages were given in an appraisement I entered a year of birth, if listed as "Tom's son or daughter" I put their father's name as a Tom, Slave of --------.
Most slave records are from Franklin County Virginia in this list though some are from Monroe County VA (now WV). I have taken the liberty to enhance that by putting for example "slave in Franklin County, 1852" in the notes because I really cannot verify where the individual was born or where the individual ended up without documented proof. My suggestion is if you are looking for a particular person, and specifically you are aware the individual was from Franklin County check the "slave of" surname lists for their first name ignoring the "slave of " last name and follow from there. (Yes, it is a needle in a haystack research and I sympathize but if you find them it is worth the effort.)
Since most slave family history is gathered through slave ownership or plantation records, I have included what I have of the owner's family history. If the slave was deeded or willed to a female family member and she has a different surname that becomes very important to locate an ancestor to the time of emancipation. If for example you know your ancestor was a slave of a Calloway family, check the surname Calloway in this list. I've tried to cross-reference the slave lists to the specific owners.
I have given the source documents or locations of the information listed. Unfortunately this does not encompass all the slaves listed in the records of Franklin County Virginia! Only family names gathered through Dry Fork research. I also cannot verify the information in the document as being the complete true history of the individual. That takes further research in some cases to prove the primary document. An example would be two slaves named "Mary" of the same slave owner's family listed in the appraisement but not in the division of slaves. Determining if there was only one slave or two is up to the researcher to prove with other documents. I can only verify to this point what I found in the documents that I have as it was written.
For privacy reasons current information on descendants only lists their name. If a person is living no vital date or location information is given.
If you have any comments, queries or questions, corrections, or specific additions you'd like to see added etc. I would love to hear from you. You can contact me, Denise Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org