Enslaved People, Maternal Kin, North Carolina, Other Documents

How we came to be McNeelys.


Rowan County, North Carolina, 1819. Widow Elizabeth Kilpatrick is close to death. Her daughter Mary is to receive “one feather bed and all my beds clothing of every kind, all my dresser furniture, my chest, one pot, one dutch oven, one pot rack” and “my negro girl named Lucinda.”

Don’t forget Lucinda. She’s my great-great-great-grandmother, and you’ll see her again. And Juda? In paragraph 5? Probably Lucinda’s mother. “All her children (not disposed of)” suggests that Dave, who went to Robert Kilpatrick, and Lucinda, were Juda’s disposed-of children. Who were the others?


Rowan County, North Carolina, 1834. Mary Kilpatrick files a deed for the sale of “one negro woman named Lucinda aged about twenty years one negro child named Alice aged three years and one negro child named John aged between one and two years,” plus a few other sundries to Samuel and John W. McNeely, who are father and son. This is the Lucinda that Mary Kilpatrick inherited from her mother in 1819. Remember John Wilson McNeely. You’ll see him again, too.


Rowan County, North Carolina, 1843. Samuel McNeely‘s will. To his beloved son John W. McNeely, he leaves “a negro woman named Lucinda and all her offspring.” Lucinda, then, may have been the only slave Samuel ever bought, and she returned his investment handsomely.

One of Lucinda’s offspring was Henry W. McNeely, whose father was the very John W. McNeely who owned him.  Henry, my grandmother Margaret Colvert Allen‘s maternal grandfather, was born in 1841 in western Rowan County and died in Statesville, North Carolina, in 1906.