My name is Tom McKnight, researching the African American Napier'. My Great Grandmother, Sophia Napier married my Great Grandfather Rev. Fred W. Watkins, Tuscumbia Alabama.
One of her legacies is that she was the Keller family cook when Helen Keller was a child in Tuscumbia Alabama.
Great Grandmother's mother, Chaney (not Jenny) Napier (my Great Great Grandmother) was a slave on the JWS Napier plantation of Marengo County AL and subsequently relocated to the Dr. J.S Napier plantation in Lawrence County, AL.
Dr. Napier relinquished a Revenue Commissioner's post in Lawrence County and moved to Franklin County AL ca. 1852. Thereafter he moved to Waco (McLennon County)ca 1866. There was a Tom Napier, my Uncle who also moved to Waco TX and married a Hattie (Harriet) Williams.
As already mentioned, Great Grandmother Sophia was the Helen Keller family cook at Tuscumbia's Ivy Green homestead when Helen Keller was a child. Tom was also a cook and his son, Robert Earle Napier also became a cook. Grateful to know if this mail may help connect my family tree dots as I am sure the European Napier' may have some slave registers that would help me positon and track my ancestors origins and movement.
Though my Napier family lineage has its origins beginning with Elias Napier (Dickson County TN), hence, I am sure that there is a Tennessee connection that moved to Alabama and points beyond. Important Napier first names, as they tend to repeat themselves include the following: These would basically be children of Great Great Grandmother Chaney Napier:
Thomas (Tom) Napier
Sophia (Sofey) Napier
Kitty (Catherine or Kate) Napier
In closing, I have a feeling that GGM Sophie Napier was named in honor of another Sophia Napier probably from TN before family members migrated further south to Alabama and points beyond. Most appreciative for your consideration and advice.
After Emancipation, Francis married John Nance, Courtland AL and they had a son they named Johnson.
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Best regards and have a blessed day.