Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A former slave at Boston Hill

A rabbit who wishes to remain anonymous pointed out that yours truly had overlooked an unassuming little cemetery near Oviedo's town hall up in Seminole County.

Boston Hill Cemetery is on Alexandria Boulevard, and has only a little wooden sign near the entrance.

According to the cemetery records, the earliest burial here was a 5-month-old infant named Lucille Allen, who died 20 April 1924. Unfortunately, I was unable to find any more information on her.

The second oldest burial here was a Clascow [sic] Robinson (1857-1926), "age 69."

That first name was unusual, so I tried several variant spelling when I began searching federal census records.

I successfully located Mr. Robinson in Oviedo in both 1910 and 1920, though his name was spelled both times as GLASCO. They indicate he was a black man, give his birthplace as South Carolina, and show he worked first as a cooper at a turpentine factory and later as a laborer on a truck farm.

I couldn't find anything beyond 1910, though.

He *may* have been the Glasgow [sic] Robinson, age 20, who was listed as a black farm laborer in Walterboro, South Carolina, in 1870--though, the cemetery record would indicate "our" fellow would have only been 13 years old at the time.

There also *may* be a connection to a Glasgow [sic] Robinson, age 49, who was listed as a black farmer in Grahamville, South Carolina, in 1870--though that man only had two daughters living in his household that year.

The case of the Boston Hill freedman serves as only the latest example of the difficulty in tracing the roots of former slaves we rabbits have encountered in this little corner of heaven.

I welcome any additional information ye readers may be able to uncover!

*1870 Census, Grahamville, Beaufort County, South Carolina, page 84b.
*1870 Census, Walterboro, Colleton County, South Carolina, page 43a.
*1910 Census, Oviedo, Orange County, Florida, page 151a.
*1920 Census, Oviedo, Seminole County, Florida, page 246b.

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