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Rhoda Pierce/Peirce/Pearce - Born about 1820, probably Eastern NC

Replies: 12

Re: Rhoda Pierce/Peirce/Pearce - Born about 1820, probably Eastern NC

Posted: 11 Jul 2013 3:28PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Pierce, Pearce, Peirce, Moore, Keys, Keyes, Keese, Kee, Key, Keeyse, Keis

I'm really enjoying reading your posts and learning more about the way society operated in Eastern NC. I read in Paul Heinegg's book that slaves were not permitted to legally marry, but were allowed to cohabitate. Based on upon this premise, I believed that if I found marriage licenses for my family members prior to emancipation, and they were listed in the Federal census, these were indeed free people of color.

I know in theory that the census is only supposed to count a person at their place of residence. However, as I reviewed census records for Beaufort County in 1850 for every person surnamed Keys, I found that apprenticed and/or bonded children were often counted at their family residences and at the residences where they worked. I also notice that both the parents may be called Mulatto, but the children may be called Black; I have come to disregard this information to a degree, because it was probably a function of appearance (complexion, hair color/texture, facial features) and perception (my 2GGpa was categorized differently many times over his 100+ year lifespan) versus strict application of the 3/4, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8 rules used in other slave states. My 2GGpa was very fair in complexion with straight hair, according to his family and my grandmother who married into the family.

I will keep plugging away online, but I may not be able to get to the court documents you recommend until I visit NC next spring or summer. I am working on determining whether Washington Keys was my 2GGpa's brother and trying to definitively rule out the Mulatto Rhoda Pierce.

SubjectAuthorDate Posted
KimDorineFati... 9 Jul 2013 7:05PM GMT 
CJROBERTS 10 Jul 2013 5:01AM GMT 
KimDorineFati... 10 Jul 2013 5:55AM GMT 
KimDorineFati... 10 Jul 2013 2:34PM GMT 
CJROBERTS 10 Jul 2013 6:11PM GMT 
KimDorineFati... 10 Jul 2013 8:01PM GMT 
CJROBERTS 11 Jul 2013 6:50PM GMT 
KimDorineFati... 11 Jul 2013 9:28PM GMT 
francis1611 11 Jul 2013 10:26PM GMT 
CJROBERTS 12 Jul 2013 12:14AM GMT 
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