Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Issac "Tooke" Jefferson

This is in memory of Issac "Tooke" Jefferson, my paternal gg-grandfather.

He was born a slave in Louisiana in around 1850. He was the son of Betsy Taylor also a former slave originally from Darlington, South Carolina. (*Newly updated information-They were owned by Henry Marshall & his wife Maria Taylor Marshall. Accordingly to an inventory sheet at the time of Henry's death in 1864, Issac was valued at $1700 at the age of 16 yrs old while his mother, Betsey Taylor was valued at $1100 at the age of 47. On the document, Issac's complexion was listed as "cooper" while his mother's was listed as "black."

His father is rumored to have been a white man and former Master of his mother Betsy Taylor but I have not yet determined who that was. As well, at present, I do not know where he got the name Jefferson since his mother wore the name, Taylor. I'm not sure if her name came from a subsequent marriage or not. However, his owner Henry Marshall's wife Maria Taylor Marshall's father was named Thomas Jefferson Taylor and he did will slaves to his daughter.

What I do know about Issac, "Tooke" Jefferson is that he was a strong black man. He was 15 years old at the time slavery ended and bound and determined to live the rest of his life to its fullest.

He started by marrying the beautiful young Jane Brayboy, the daughter of Jim (*newly corrrected info) and Phoebe Brayboy also former slaves of african/native american heritage and also originally from South Carolina. Mrs. Jane Brayboy Jefferson was a midwife and helped bring into the world many bouncing babies for both african american and white families.

Grandpa Issac Jefferson was in the farming industry. He owned many acres of land and thrived in his business especially amongst african americans. As well, he had a brilliant mind. He served as a Judge during reconstuction. This began a long legacy that has continued throughout the generations as they are many of his seed past and present that have choosen the field of law as their profession.

The Jeffersons were also Christian people. They worhipped God and gave thanks continually for their many blessings including their new found freedom. They were good and faithful servants and when the Lord said, "Be fruitful and multiply,", they listened. Issac and Jane had 12 children, they include, Margaret, Sallie, Cornelia, Charlotte, Ella, Mary, Henry, Pearley, Isaac, Rufus, Willie and Chestnut Jefferson.

So in honor of Black history Month 2008, I salute you grandfather for being a great husband, father, christian and role model for generations to come.

No comments: