Thursday, July 26, 2012

Update on Bazil Jenkins, Free Man of Color

A Deed of Emancipation in Livingston County has provided a little more information on Bazil Jenkins, a free man of color. Livingston County Court Order Book K, pages 88-89, dated 7 August 1849 contains the following entry:

"It is ordered that the clerk of this Court Issue to the said Minta Jenkins (who is ascertained to be ... aged Thirty Seven years, about five feet & a half inches high, yellow Complexion, no scars, a Certificate of her freedom ..."

The 1860 Livingston County Mortality Schedule on shows that Araminta Jenkins died of consumption in January 1860.

A couple of tombstones in Smithland Cemetery are intriguing and hint at more information on Bazil Jenkins.

The first one is for Alsey Jenkins with the date of Novr. 1st 1835. The stone is broken and it is unknown if this is her death date or not.

Beside Alsey's tombstone is one for Lyda Jenkins. It states she died June 30th 1842, Aged 57 years. There is a long, partially illegible inscription and, below the inscription is this: "Erected by her son Bazil" It is unusual for a slave woman to have a tombstone at this time and we know she must have been a slave as Bazil was born a slave. If his mother had been free, Bazil would have been free also.

Now, if we could just find out what happened to Bazil Jenkins after his marriage in 1866 Pope County, Illinois.

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