The Yeldell Family (Through My Eyes)

{April 3, 2012}   Help!

This journey started out to see how large my family is.  To do that I needed to find out more about the original Yeldell my grandfather Jefferson.  During my research I have switched some but my goals are pretty much the same.  For example, I still want to know how big we are but in doing that I now have to try and connect all of these Yeldell’s that I didn’t know existed.  With that being said I need all of the new Yeldell’s and names associated with Yeldell’s help.  I am just going to say everything that I know so far and if you have ANY CLUE or ANY INFORMATION please contact me.  Here we go:

Martha Brooks:

She is my first problem.  I was given information and I confirmed that there were two more children that may be hers.  Dave and Priscilla.  They were sold with her in 1857 to Lemuel Brooks.  It is highly possible they were sold to him as a family.  I don’t see them in the census because by the time the slaves are freed they were old enough to live on their own.  It is also possible they died and there is no record of it.  This puts the number of biological children by Martha to 9.  Now this is not unexpected.  In fact it seems more reasonable since Martha was considered a breeder. For those that don’t know what breeder means Slave breeding was the mating of black men and women in order to produce children who can be sold on the slave market.  Slave owners considered it no different from breeding dogs, horses, cows or any other animals so they will give birth to young which can be marketed.  This could be why the name changed from Brooks to Yeldell.  Given the fact that she belonged to the Brooks family and if we judge them by his methods of how he treated people on what he did to Charles Sumner on the Senate floor, I would have changed my name too. I also must mention that during that time former slaves were allowed to change there last names to something different than there former masters.  I also don’t know who her husband was.  Not knowing the husband name could also be why the name change.  What I do know is that she never changed hers just her children. Another issue is that she probably had a child at 40 and named her Martha after herself.  Young Martha was had in the mid to late 1870s so she was six when I first saw her in the 1880 Census.   The 1890 Census was burned so I wouldn’t see her again until the 1900 Census but by that time she has probably married and that’s right you guessed it her name is no longer Yeldell.  I think it is safe to say that Martha had 6 boys and 3 girls.  There names from oldest to youngest: Dave, Priscilla, Rebecca, David and Robert (twins) Peter (our great grandfather), Thomas and George (twins) and Martha. Final issue on this end; you know the saying “never the paths shall cross” or something like that well the Census shows they all lived around each other (all meaning my great and great, great grandparents) but the Yeldell families (the white or black) did not seem to cross paths with them.

Next: Peter Yeldell

This is my great granddaddy and Jefferson Yeldell’s father.  After the 1910 Census he disappears which seems to be the norm for this family. I am assuming he died between then and 1915.  I say that because South Carolina started to record deaths and give death certificates as of 1915. Now sure they may not have done it for all blacks but they did for some and as the years went on it got better.  But with him I have a feeling there is something more.  Maybe in some kind of paper about him. I just have no clue on how to go about finding it.

Then there is Mrs. J Holloway-Adams.  This is my great great grandmother and Katie’s (Jefferson’s mom) mother.  I say “J” because I don’t know her first name not only is it illegible (sp) on the census record when you look at a different one it is a different name.  So I have no clue about her except that she is my great great grandmother. I know that she shows up beside katie’s dad on each census but her name is different. It is possible that it is not the same woman but then I don’t have a death certificate and if I did I wouldn’t know who it was.  I mean I am still searching I may luck up as Ezra (katie’s father) being the informant on the certificate but that is a long shot.

In my research I have learned several different surnames and with that being said I believe everybody in Edgefield is related. You can mention Ryan, Kemp, Senior and Peterson and you betta bet some how they are related.  Well the thing about the Peterson and Senior side is I think they are Indian.  I mean I can find out about my grandmother’s side a little easier (pinching my fingers real close together) but after finding my great, great grandparents name only they disappear.  We complain about black folk history and trying to trace our roots but try your hand at Native American.

In a nutshell the names I am researching

Ezra Adams – father to Katie Yeldell (my grand daddy’s mother)
J Holloway – mother to Katie Yeldell (my grand daddy’s mother)
Martha Brooks – mother to Peter Yeldell (my grand daddy’s father)
Enoch Peterson – father to Lula Peterson (my grandmother’s mother)
Anne Sheppard – mother to Lula Peterson (my grandmother’s mother)
Johnnie Senior (possible Native American) – father to Johnnie Senior (my grandmother’s father)
Jane Williams (possible Native American) – mother to Johnnie Senior (my grandmother’s father)

So, there is my dilemma the quick version. If you are associated with the names or if you recognize anything please send me a message and I will get back to you immediately.  Until Next Time…


et cetera