Saturday, September 22, 2007

Whatever Happened to Mary Manson?

My great-great-grandmother, Matilda Manson, had a sister, Mary, born in about 1846. [See 1850 US Census, Talbot County, Georgia]. The 1850 census is the only one in which Matilda, Mary, and their mother, Jane, appear together in the same household. In fact, it may be the only census in which Mary appears at all.

Mary next appears in a record in 1853. In that year, she was the donee of a parcel of land conveyed "with love and affection" by one Nathaniel Brown, a 60 year old white man in Taylor County, Georgia. Thereafter, Mary Manson disappears from recorded history. What happened to her?

She may have gotten married; she may have died; she may have left the state. But this is a tremendous challenge. I really want to know what happened to Mary Manson. I'm checking tax records and land records. Georgia vital records are sparse in this period.

Now there is a Mary Manson living on the large plantation at Turkey Creek in Wilkinson County. I doubt that this is the same person. Those at Turkey Creek were all slaves--Mary was a free woman of color.

So this is Mystery #1: what became of Mary Manson? I hope I can solve it!

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