Search Results for reuben hatter

Reuben and Elizabeth Hatter

Miss Christian Blackburn, Charles Town, VA emancipated 9 persons and Mr. Lemon was hired to conduct the emigrants to Norfolk via Alexandria, the names were: Andrew and Priscilla Green and 5 children, Lydia Carroll, other names-Young, Anderson, Crockett, Reuben and Elizabeth Hatter. The husbands of two of the women were ransomed at the expense of eight hundred dollars, that they might accompany their wives to Liberia. For Reuben, she gave $450, to her sisters brother-in-law, Samuel Walter Washington and for Andrew, $350. Those liberated, were generally well supplied with the articles most necessary for their comfort during the voyage, and their subsequent settlement; and some had been mainly prepared by instruction, for usefulness in the colony.

One of the females (Elizabeth) sent out by Miss Blackburn, had a pretty good library, infant school boards, spelling & reading books, and it is believed, that on her arrival, she may open a small school to her advantage.  Reuben found he was happiest while sailing on the Carolinian and helped out whenever possible, learning and earning his sea legs. After arriving in Liberia he was not happy  farming, he was not  trained for that kind of work. It was shortly after he settled Elizabeth into a house and set her school up for her that he wandered back down to the docks. He heard that a new ship had arrived and so he hired himself out to become a steward on that very vessel that had transported freed slaves to Liberia and would be returning with goods from Monrovia to the Americas. Reuben followed his passion, but he left a wife who stumbled along with lonely days and months waiting his return. Elizabeth took in a border that she taught to read and write in exchange for help around the house and for the company.  She did enjoy teaching everyone who would attend her classes but life without her husband and family was indeed lonely and very hard. Reading her letters one can just feel her pain of feeling abandoned and of the loneliness.

On one of Reuben’s trips to Liberia in early of 1836, he found his wife had fallen ill and died all alone. Sadden by the news, Reuben  returned to the States and disappeared into Pennsylvania.

We still might still find him…

 

Reuben Hatter Pass papers

This was a certificate of freedom-shore pass for Reuben Hatter.It states that he was of 5’6 ¾” inches tall, has black wooly hair, Light Sambo complexion, dark eyes and a scar on the base of his left hand

1  Emigrants Database, Virginia Emigrants to Liberia, Virginia Center for Digital History, University of Virginia (/liberia/index.phpage=Resources&section=Search%20Emigrants)

Hatter Family

 

The earliest Hatter found so far is Frances Hatter b.1735, he was originally from the West coast of Africa. Our largest DNA concentration is from Benin/Togo.Frances Hatter freed after the death of John and Elizabeth Ariss, along with Charlotte  and Sarah. All slaves of this 1700 group maintain the name of Hatter Slaves.

We found that Charlotte by the time she was freed, had four sons John, Reuben, George, and James. James and Reuben had been sold to Samuel Walter Washington, who in turn reluctantly sold Reuben to Christian Blackburn, who sent him and his wife Elizabeth after manumitting both to Liberia. click here for more on them in Liberia.Reuben Hatter

James was a jack of all trades and ensured his position by being efficient and hard working.He jumped the broom with Matilda and they had numerous child but we can only speak on George b. 1818 and Franklin b 1820.

The Hatter Family Video by Joyceann Gray

This video was taped and produced  by Jim Surkamp, September 2014 in the Perry Room at the Charles Town Library in West Virginia. This is second of three video parts to this Family story. You can view part one about  Elizabeth and Reuben Hatter  I felt it was important to get on tape as much of our family’s story as much as I had uncovered. Other  historical video’s produced by Jim Surkamp can be viewed at Hamilton Hatter’s  tense hometown part one and Hamilton Hatter  part two.   Future video’s will be specifically dedicated to the lives and legacy of our ancestors as we feature other members. If you the viewer have any information to add or feel a correction is needed for any portion, please do not hesitate to contact me. Thank you for viewing and please pass this knowledge on to other family members. Joyceann Gray

The Hatter Brothers -George

Through wills, property inventories and other family papers, we found that John Ariss (notable Architect) and Samuel Walter Washington (a brother of George Washington) owned and shared Hatter slaves. Additionally, by 1830 emancipation records verify the enslavement of some of the Hatter’s in the wills of John Ariss and his wife Elizabeth.  

Reuben and James Hatter were brothers and slaves on Samuel Walter Washington’s plantation outside of Charles Town, Jefferson County, VA in 1801. Their mother was Charlotte, the mistresses’ lady in waiting for Elizabeth Ariss and who was freed along with her sister Sarah the housekeeper and their father Francis in 1802-3. According to the will and Deeds of Freedom from John Ariss files, they were to be granted their freedom only after the death of his wife.

James Hatter, being fair in appearance and intelligent was raised up to be a houseman.  James was allowed to marry and a number of children were born to James and Matilda, but sadly some of the children were sold to other plantations.

Something happened for later we find James working and living near the Dickerson Furnace at Malden Salt Mines in Kanawha Valley.

Samuel Walter Washington (brother of Geroge Washington) reluctantly sold Reuben Hatter to Christian Blackburn, who in turn emancipated him on the condition he leaves for Liberia along with his wife, Elizabeth.

 

 

 Those Who Came Before Us...The Hatter's

This picture is of the home of George and Nancy Hatter. 

Taken during the Annual Homecoming in Buxton 4 Sep, 2014

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA   

George Hatter


Folklore has George refusing to continue living as a slave, so shortly after turning about 16 he escaped. The Sheriff caught him, and George was returned to receive a  severe  whipping and hard labor. Upon hearing that he and the others who had fallen in such disfavor of the plantation owner were to be sold off to the slave trader from New Orleans. George began to plot his next escape.

Another version of this tale had George as a favorite of his mistress Mrs. Samuel Washington, and it was she who aided him in his flight. She provided a horse, provisions and instructions to hide by day travel by night and always follow the North Star. There was a large bounty out for young George.
Thankfully, George did make it to Pennsylvania assisted by the Underground Railroad; Free Blacks and Quakers. There he married a beauty Mary Baker, from Liverpool, England. With her help in short order, he began to read and write. In studying hard, he excelled and became quite the orator speaking out against slavery. But it became apparent he was not safe, so they headed further north to Niagara area in Canada. In 1849, learning of the Elgin Settlement George and Mary prepared to move to Buxton. They finally arrived in 1850.The Hatter’s accumulated five hundred acres and had five children. George would become  known as an outspoken abolitionist and many in the settlement sought his counsel for his opinion was highly respected. Notables such John Brown (Harper’s Ferry) would travel far to speak with him and others in Chatham-Kent on a number of occasions to discuss many issues concerning establishing a free state.  
DSC_3205 George along with many other pillars of the Buxton Settlement declined to participate in the erratic schemes of John Brown.

George Walter Hatter lived until almost 70, dying from injuries he suffered in a fall from the roof of his home 1888.

Our conversation: Black Rug and White Rug

There came a time when Descendants from both sides of the slavery era came together. Came together to share, talk and massage the pain. Pain for Sarah, who has to live with the embarrassment of finding out her family were enslavers and not very nice about it at all. Enslaving our families; that is Monique and mine.  So Sarah walks with that heavy yoke  as she tries to make sense of how and why her ancestors could participate in such human degradation.Monique and I walk with a certain sadness and stifled anger, trying to understand what our people went through and how could one person treat another in such a manner.

So we talk and cry and talk some more and here is once such conversation:

BLACK RUG/WHITE RUG; A DIALOGUE AMONG THREE LINKED ANCESTORS

By Joyceann Gray, Sarah Brown, and Monique Hopkins

Joyceann Gray, Monique Crippen-Hopkins and Sarah Brown are “linked through slavery”. Joyceann and Monique’s ancestors were enslaved by Sarah’s ancestors, the Washington family. When Sarah published her most recent post, about her connection with Monique’s family, Joyceann spoke out about her feelings about the piece. The three of them decided that the Facebook dialogue that followed was important, and would be valuable as a post of its own.

Read Joyeann’s blog for her full story:  https://jgraydiscovery.com/

Read Monique’s blog for her full story: http://genealogybreakingdownthewalls.blogspot.com/

Joyceann Gray

 Joyceann Gray writes:

There are a few who are in a delicate position being a direct descendant of slaveholders and wanting to give what you can of slave history and family connection to descendants of those enslaved by your families. You are in possession of access to all your family papers which affords you a glimpse into your ancestors’ thought processes, emotions, and desires.

The descendants of those enslaved, can only guess what our people thought or felt. We are desperate for any tidbit of information about our ancestors. The norm was to account for our people by number, not by name, and it was very rare to find a surname. But we have a responsibility to record what we can find of our ancestors and their histories. To tell their stories and as much as possible ensures that when others write about them the facts and impressions are correct and in keeping with the truth. We have a responsibility to them to never let their pain and struggles be forgotten and to ensure their legacy lives on!

 Sarah Brown adds:

me and Denise

When I wrote my last blog piece, Part Two of my series “Redrawing A Community – A Washington Descendant’s Journey ( “People” -The Thompsons), athttp://linkedthroughslavery.com/2015/03/18/redrawing-a-community-a-washington-descendants-journey-part-two-people-the-thompsons/  – I included a photograph of Solomon Thompson that was provided by Monique Crippen-Hopkins, his 3x great-granddaughter. I described what I saw in his expression. As linked descendants, the three of us have been talking to each other through Facebook, and by phone occasionally. Since I was writing Part Two about Monique’s family, I sent her a final draft to review, but Joyceann saw it for the first time on the Bittersweet site.

Joyceann was troubled by my comments, and sent me some of her own. This started a discussion among the three of us that was sometimes difficult and emotional. In the end we were all glad that Joyceann didn’t shy away from expressing her frustration. Since our talk reflects the difficult work that Coming To The Table is committed to, we decided to edit it slightly and post it here.

Monique Crippen-Hopkins

Our dialogue brought home one of the pitfalls of writing about slaveholding as a descendant of slaveholders. Attention must be paid to acknowledging the pain inflicted by our families, in words on the page; assuming that the reader knows that the writer is aware of the specifics of abuse may not be enough. History demands a clear retelling of the dark side of the story, and a missed opportunity to do so can undermine establishing the truth.

 Dialogue among Sarah Brown and Joyceann Gray and Monique Crippen-Hopkins

(Sarah wrote in her post, about the picture of Solomon Thompson: 

From my contemporary perspective he seems sad or wary, or possibly just unaccustomed to being photographed. His undirected stare might be the common expression of a servant who has learned to be both present and absent, without being able to freely choose either.”

Joyceann starts a dialogue by commenting on that paragraph.)

 Joyceann: From your perspective you did a good job of guessing, but you didn’t remark on the pain that he had to have felt or the bad he must have seen and endured!! From my understanding of his history, troubles and struggles, all of which were much more than you or I could ever imagine!

 Sarah: I guess I thought that was implied – that he had to be both present and absent, which is pretty much impossible. My whole project is an attempt to address the pain inflicted by my family, but what I hear from you is that I should stress the pain endured more clearly.

 Joyceann: Stand on a black rug you really see and feel much differently than standing on a white rug… We feel through the ages what we as a people and in cases individuals felt as they went through their daily struggles, I often have nightmares about the struggle of my Indian heritage, my people and their losses. Not sure what directly; but something bad had to have happen for the dreams are intense.. I have evidence in another part of my family where the husband tried to buy his wife and children, but he was only allowed to buy his wife and a daughter. He had to leave the four boys in slavery.

When he paid the cost for wife and daughter he was forced to leave the state… so can we imagine the pain and agony there??? Nope, as a mother and grandmother I can’t and really don’t want to.

Sarah: It’s a good comment, Joyceann. The next post will have more details also. I’m thinking that the word “servant” should be in quotes, since it was a euphemism.

 Joyceann: Coming from an elite and intellectual standpoint we have to be careful to not assume or think things are implied….We weren’t servants… servants had options. We only had two options in most cases; do as told or suffer dire consequences

Sarah: Of course he wasn’t <a servant>, although the white families used that term. I shouldn’t assume that readers know the way I’m using it, though. I was saying that he shared a common expression of people regarded as servants – a class thing as well. They had to stand by and pretend to be invisible, and that’s the expression I saw. I don’t see him as only a victim, though – he seems to be conveying a dignity that refuses that classification, although he was robbed of choices in his life.

Joyceann: But he was a victim through and through caught up in a vicious cycle of horrendous cruelty!

Sarah: It’s not easy to write about the black experience as a white person. I tend to feel that I’m writing about the human experience in general. I don’t want to sound only like an elite intellectual. I do use my own voice, though, since anything else wouldn’t be genuine. I would really like it if you added these comments to the blog page – it’s a good conversation.

Yes, all those enslaved were victims of horrendous cruelty. Gosh – there is no way I’m downplaying that! I’m talking about what I see in his eyes – he’s a complex human being rather than JUST a victim.

Joyceann: True but I see more pain I think than you do, I see a man that has endured and seen too much! I see a man that has survived and has YET to really live.

This picture of Solomon Thompson is from Monique Crippen-Hopkins' family collection. Date unknown.

 Sarah: It’s a great comment, and I see exactly what you mean. I see that pain. But I chose to write about him as transcending that pain as much as possible. I see him as wearing a kind of mask. Truth be told, I never expected to see an actual photograph of someone enslaved by my family. His dignity and cautious expression really stand out to me – to me, he’s masking his pain.

Joyceann: His eyes are not masking the pain! It is all in the eyes!!

I really enjoy the fact you are conscious of your heritage and of the pain but we have to tread lightly when your ancestors dealt with my ancestors as if they were cattle or horses… and whenever they spoke of freeing their property there was always a condition that had to be met first. For instance George Washington lamented over freeing the slaves, so he waits until he’s almost dead to say oh yeah free my slaves AFTER I die and only then can they be freed AFTER my wife dies too! Now what kind of mental anguish is that, what a torn and conflicted humanitarian he was…Yes?

At least your ancestor Bushrod Washington said flatly; hell no to freeing slaves! Samuel Washington George’s brother didn’t even want to sell Reuben Hatter to his sister-in-law Christian Blackburn!!It took his wife’s badgering him to get him to do it! And even then he made her pay top dollar too!

So Sarah what I’m attempting to do is to get you to see another view of all the “Solomons” of those times…have you ever found a photo of a person who’s been enslaved; smiling?!

Sarah: Joyceann, I’m writing about all of that. I hope that you see that what I’m doing is an attempt to address all of these injustices. I’m going to send you a copy of an article I wrote a few years ago. It was supposed to be published in a journal called Race/Ethnicity, but the journal went under before it came out, so it was never published. It’s important to me that you know my personal perspective. We have to get know each other better, I think. I see that you feel I don’t know how these people suffered, and that I’m downplaying that. If that’s the impression I’ve given, then I want to correct it.

Joyceann: No not downplaying at all. Let me try saying that another way. When looking at old photos of enslaved folks: When you see an uplifted chin you see pride, I see pain with stubborn refusal to give in.

I see at least I felt you were seeing through ” rose” colored glasses so to speak, you were elevating when in fact we need to stand low? Make sense?

I’d love to read your work I’ll do that while we’re on our road trip back home!

Sarah: Yes! It’s the stubborn refusal to give in that I see in the foreground.

Joyceann: Now you got it!!

Sarah: That’s what I was trying to say, but I guess I didn’t say it. Thanks for pointing that out.

Joyceann: Are you ok with our discussion?

Sarah: Yes! It’s kind of painful, but I love that you’ve told me how you really feel. I understand that I left out the chance to comment on the cruelty of Solomon’s situation. But I do want to know that you hear me, too. And I see that Monique is commenting now – great….

Joyceann: It’s hard to write someone else’s story.

Oct3_6_2

 (Monique Crippen-Hopkins enters the conversation)

Monique: Yes, that is true, I’m having a hard time writing my ancestors’ story….I’ve been trying to figure out how to do it to give them the honor they deserve.

Sarah: The only way I can write it is to write what I’m experiencing personally – the journey I’m taking myself. So I write about what I see in the picture, my communication with the two of you, and how I feel about my own family.

Monique: I’ve just been reading the comments; it’s a lot to take in, because what is being written is about my family that has come alive to me, and a very painful experience at that. Some of it may come across as just a story to others, but that is my family. I can actually feel for these people and for my grandparents!

I don’t have any real comments…I was just taking it in.

Sarah: Our stories intersect, and I want to honor both of your families without taking over your own stories. I’ve very conscious of my responsibility there.

Joyceann: True but our intersection is only up to the civil war ending when the Washingtons and other slaveholders were forced to free their slaves. Now did the Washingtons work with their formers slaves to help with their transition? Train them? Give them the land to work? Then till now we didn’t have a relationship. We have come together again now as we try to piece things together and make amends….

Sarah: I’m researching what happened at Claymont after emancipation. I’d like to think that my family tried to help those they enslaved, but I think it was the other way around – some of the Thompsons and others stuck around and worked for what was probably hardly any pay.

(to Joyceann) I’m thinking about your comment about how hard it is to write someone else’s story. It’s ironic – what I’m trying to do is tell the full story about my family. So many people have written about George and all as patriots, but not as slaveholders. I think my job is to correct that.

Joyceann: I hear you louder than I’ve been able to express, I do indeed understand also why you are doing this… I’m just playing devil’s advocate here somewhat trying to help you be careful in how you relay others’ history. I am excited to know you are going to tackle writing the hard truth of your ancestors… That will be a bestseller.

Monique: No, just seeing all of this became a little emotional because it made me see and think about some things I never really thought of before.

Sarah: Yeah….wow. This is such a raw subject and that’s why we have to talk about it. Thanks Joyceann!

Monique: Thank you Cousin Joyceann! You have a lot of insight.

Joyceann: So yes it’s a raw discussion but I’m so glad we are not running from it!!

Sarah: When I got the archive with all our wills I felt that someone had to address the wrongs my ancestors had committed. And they were many. Connecting with the two of you allows me to make baby steps toward that goal. You’ve allowed me in – thank you so much!

Joyceann: And by writing your story SARAH you will indeed be helping a lot of people to heal and move on, someone needs to acknowledge the real story !

Sarah: Can I tell you both that I’ve got tears in my eyes? None of us asked for what our families gave us, and we’re all working on making sense of it. I’m so grateful we can do this, raw or not.

Monique: Yes, that’s what this is all about…taking those steps, it’s a lot and we can only try to move on, we will never be able to correct what our ancestors did, we can only help some people move on. What’s done can’t be undone we can only try to help others to heal

Great job both of you in this conversation!!      Thank you because you have given me food for thought.

Site Title

“Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.” — Maya Angelou

People's Court

See, what had happened was...

Mississippi Ancestors

Beverly A Harper Research Blog

victori7's Blog

A great WordPress.com site

Majic 102.1

Houston, R&B, Soul, Radio, Texas, KMJQ

Gathering Family Untangling Roots

From Texas To The Carolinas, A Never Ending Search For My Ancestors

J.Gray Discovery Photos

www.jgraydiscovery.com

BitterSweet

Linked Through Slavery

Breaking down the walls

The greatest WordPress.com site in all the land!

%d bloggers like this: