"In 1832, not long after Nat Turner's rebellion, the General Assembly began to pass "black codes" to control the lives and activities of freedmen. Soon these harsh rules made Delaware "the least hospitable place in the Union for freedmen prior to the Civil War.

"A Wilmington, Delaware newspaper of 1850 noted that Delaware "has more free colored in proportion to its population than any state in the Union." White employers relied on free blacks [as well as Native Americans / Nanticoke Moors] for labor, and, like Maryland, Delaware took a coercive stance toward its free black population. An 1849 law threatened to sell free blacks into servitude for a year if they were "idle and poor" and remained unemployed. Blacks had been barred from state-aided schools as far back as 1821. In 1832, not long after Nat Turner's rebellion, the General Assembly began to pass "Black Codes" to control the lives and activities of freedmen. Soon these harsh rules made Delwaware "the least hospitable place in the Union for freedmen prior to the Civil War." The result was a migration of Delaware Blacks [and Delaware Moors] northward in the 1850's."

The Levin Soccume trial in Delaware about 1855 may have been a result of these racial policies. Levin was a storekeeper in Sussex County who sold gun paraphernalia to a cousin who was later adjudged to have a degree of African ancestry. Read about Levin Soccume HERE.

Records and/or Discussion


All links active as of 23 Jan 2012

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Vital Records of Delaware-born persons

The Delaware-to-Michigan Migration of 1855-1875 by Don Fisher


Discussions from the Mitsawokett List



American "Indian" settlements in Ohio, 1700-1829
Map of Delaware I
ndian towns & trails in Ohio

Delawares (Lenape) in Ohio

A note from Deborah Cavel-Greant 13 Mar 1999

For those who have an interest in this subject there's an excellent paper on-line called
"More Motley than Mackinaw":

From Ethnic Mixing to Ethnic Cleansing on the Frontier of the Lower Missouri, 1783-1833
by John Mack Faragher of Yale University

A couple of excerpts:

"Shawnees, Delawares, and other Algonquian-speaking peoples of the southern Great Lakes region, first emigrated to the lower Missouri River country during the 1780s. The chiefs declared that "the Americans...put us out of our lands, forming therein great settlements, extending themselves like a plague of locusts in the territories of the Ohio River. They treat us as their cruelest enemies are treated, so that today hunger and the impetuous torrent of war . . . have brought our villages to a struggle with death."

...the Spanish hoped to shore up the security of their colony by organizing an effective local militia among the Shawnee and Delaware communities. By 1787 some 1800 emigrant Indians, mostly Shawnees and Delawares, had settled in towns along the Mississippi...

...During the War of 1812 emigrant Indians fought alongside Americans against tribes allied with the British. When the Boone's Lick country of central Missouri was under siege by Osages in 1814, Governor Clark "sent out the Showoness & Delaways" to protect the frontiers."

Remembering that many of the Sussex Co. Delaware (and Kent Co too I presume) had emigrated west to Ohio in the mid 1700's it is feasible that they and their descendents would be among the group who chose to leave Ohio
for fear of the encroaching Americans - which may be why we see surnames in common in DE and then in the Ozarks.

This would take real genealogical diligence to prove - but wouldn't it be a plum!


Surnames Found in Oklahoma Cemetaries

From Michael Helton MEH1988@yahoo.com 14 Jul 2003 -- Two or three years ago as a grad student in NC I came across a volume series of books entitled Our People and Where They Rest: A Visit to 104 old cemetaries in Northeast Oklahoma by James W. Tyner and Alice Tyner Timmons. There are 9 to 11 volumes, however, I only photocopied Volume 2 where I found my surname Helton and Sisco along with Harmon and Sanders. The other volumes may contain other family names as well.I also came across a book on The History of Broome County, NY, which contains information on the Indians in that county and the history of the town of Nanticoke.

Delaware Students at Carlisle Indian School

From Michael Helton MEH1988@yahoo.com 9 Mar 2004 (and Barbara Landis blandis@epix.net)--




Durhams of Central Indiana by Laura A. Durham

American Indians in Indiana

Grants and Treaties in Indiana, 1783-1840
The Great Lakes Woodland People
(long loading)

"When Europeans first arrived along the northeastern shore of North America, they encountered Indian residents of various Woodland tribes. The map at right gives general locations of the early homelands of the Woodland People.

"As the European population grew along the Eastern coast, some Indian tribes were forced to move away from their traditional homelands. Competition among the French, British, and Indians for the fur trade resulted in conflict and warfare among the Woodland tribes causing many tribes to move north and west to escape the bloodshed.

"By the early 1700s, the area that is now Indiana and Ohio became a refuge for numerous Woodland tribes. Some, like the Delaware, Mohican, Nanticoke, Munsee, and Shawnee originally lived along the eastern coast but were gradually pushed west by the growing white population. Others, such as the Miami, Potawatomi, Kickapoo, Piankashaw, Wea, and Huron returned to their homelands in the southern Great Lakes as the conflicts over fur trade subsided. The end of the American Revolution forced the Woodland People farther west. The maps below show the impact of white settlement on the Woodland tribes in Indiana. The Indians had an impact as well; for example, many of their original villages grew into Indiana cities and towns."

Woodlands Cultures -- by Rita Kohn

"Brandishing a map of U.S. Indian reservations, exhibit developer Tricia O'Connor points to the inkless six states bordering the Ohio River. It's a big hole-not a single reservation in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, West Virginia and Kentucky. How to interpret that fact is the exhibit team's challenge. "You can say there are no Indians here," states O'Connor. "Or, you could disprove the assumption," which is what O'Connor and Ray Gonyea, the Eiteljorg's curator of Native American art and culture, are doing. Through diligent cultural sleuthing, they've managed to illuminate the rich heritage of the region's tenacious indigenous peoples, whose traditions and influence have endured through time and immense changes in a society where they are rendered nearly invisible."

Indiana 1810 "Indian" Villages

The connection between Indiana and the Delaware "Indian" communities







"The History and Genealogy of the
Native American Isolate Communities
of Kent County, Delaware, and
Surrounding Areas on the Delmarva Peninsula
and Southern New Jersey"



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