Treasure Chest Thursday: Another Stuart Paternity Proved

For just $5 bucks to the Louisiana Vital Records department, another piece of my family’s lore has gone from hearsay to verified heredity.

My cousins Monique and Renee learned about their slave and master ancestors, Tempy Burton and Col. W.R. Stuart, the same way I did – through family stories. The above death certificate confirms their oral history.  It documents that Tempy Burton and William R. Stuart are the parents of Alfred Burton Stuart, my great-uncle.   Tempy was a slave to Col. Stuart and his wife Elizabeth  when Alfred was born in 1860.  This made the colonel’s first child with Tempy his property as well. His last child with Tempy, my great-grandmother Josephine would escape this fate since she was born after the Civil War and the official abolition of slavery.

Monique and I, Tempy and the colonel’s descendants from their oldest and youngest children, were actually chilling on Monique’s deck while our daughters splashed in her pool when this proof arrived in the mail.  But we were having such a good time soaking up the summer day that we never bothered to check the mailbox.

Vital records (and family stories) are a beautiful thing.

What family lore are you trying to back up with documentation?  One of these days I’ll try to see if there is any truth to our royal Stuart blood rumor.

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6 thoughts on “Treasure Chest Thursday: Another Stuart Paternity Proved

  1. Wow. How many children did they have together, over how many years? If the children knew he was their father – did he treat them like his own children, or act in some way like a father to them? And what does this mean for how Tempy felt about him – did they love each other, like Morgan Freeman discovered of his ancestors, was it coercion, or something in between? Is there a clue in that he gave them his name, or was that just common for these situations? So fascinating!

  2. Those are all of the same questions I have myself, Aud. Don’t know if I’ll ever find the answers, but I’m definitely going to try!

  3. Dionne,

    Great post. I love the part, where you guys are sitting by the pool, while the key to another piece of your genealogy puzzle sits in the mailbox! Priceless! Great job connecting the dots.


  4. Great Blog Dionne! And it is so cool to see the official documents…. congrats on another awesome find!

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