African American Families of Virginia's Eastern Shore  

Dear Visitors,

Our collection of family data and photos for Eastern Shore African American Families is very small. This area of our site is far from finished--it's barely begun. We will be most grateful for any additions that you can provide. If you have photos, data, family stories, references for a bibliography, or other material that you are willing to share, please contact Barbara Cox at Thank you very much!


The records and resources that researchers use to study the family histories of African Americans on the Eastern Shore and elsewhere are much scarcer than those for white families, particularly prior to 1860. African-American family research must necessarily be creative and persistent. Where there are no marriage records, census records, and other sources, you may need to turn to family sources for long-saved letters, oral histories later written, or long-forgotten local archives. 

Where the contributors of material on this site have indicated a source for their information, we recommend that you examine the original documents and confirm the information or the conclusions drawn whenever possible. Where contributors have not provided their information source, we suggest that you use the material as clues that will help you search, rather than as definitive data.

As this collection grows, we hope to add material that will be helpful to you in your search, including potential sources of data, some indications of how to interpret or what to do with information when you find it, and researchers who might be of assistance.

Descendants of Peter BECKETT



As you can see, so far we have but a few pages of records and research tools specific to African-American history on the Eastern Shore. We hope you will help us expand what we have started.

Eastern Shore African-American Soldiers of the Civil War
Some Eastern Shore soldiers of the United States Colored Troops are included in the Special 1890 Census Schedules for Northampton and Accomack Counties. These schedules are linked here.

Runaway Slaves

Exhibit at Kerr Place



For the past twenty and more years, Frances Bibbins Latimer, Eastern Shore researcher, author, and publisher, has concentrated on learning, documenting, and sharing the history of African-American families on the Shore. She is a wealth of knowledge, meticulous and objective in her research, and generous to a fault. If you have a question related to your research in African-American Eastern Shore history, you may post your question by clicking here [posting page to be added]. Your query will be posted for others to see and respond to, and a copy will also be sent direct to Mrs. Latimer. If you prefer to contact her direct, check there web site HickoryHouse.

Web site copyright 1996-2005 by Barbara Cox.  Page updated May 22, 2005
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