The 4th Week of Graditude of Challenge:
A Family Member
I’m thankful for all my family members. I was thinking about which person I want to write about. I choose my Great Grandfather, my father’s grandfather. I’ve written about him before.
I’m thankful for my Great Grandfather, Isaac Blakey. There’s so much I’ve discovered about him. His life has been an inspiration to me as I’m searching for my family connections.
Isaac was born into American slavery sometime between 1845 to 1847. He and his family were enslaved in Missouri. By the age of 12, Isaac was said to have ran away. About that time Isaac’s family was divided and sold. Isaac later joined the Civil War in 1863 – 1866.
As I’m searching for info on my Great Grandfather, I wonder how he did what he did? He was born a slave and later became a free man as a teenager. He fought during the Civil War and was injured while serving in April of 1864.
I believe Isaac was a smart man. Though, he couldn’t read nor write, he had some knowledge. He was applying for his Civil War pension in 1891. He had to prove who he was. He needed witness to verify who he was and about his health issues.
As I’ve read Isaac’s pension records, he had many people who vouched for him. Isaac had a bayonet wound from the war. His left leg had been a running with sores since he was wounded. By the 1890’s, Isaac was unable to do work. And at times he was confined to his bed.
I’ve read a news article about some of Blakey / White family history. After the Civil War, Isaac was able to located his family. He convinced them to move to Forest Green, Missouri. That was were the family was before the Civil War.
I believe that Isaac was a forgiving person. He asked two of his former slaveholders to speak on his behalf. They knew of Isaac as a slave. Yes, they wrote an affidavits stating who Isaac was. Isaac had a good reputation as a slave.
In 1900 Isaac received his pension. It was $6 a month. Also, he received back pay since 1891. At the time of his death, he was receiving $ 24 a month. Isaac passed on Dec 23, 1917.
So far on my search, Isaac is the only family member that has been listed as an Africa. He and his parents and some siblings were listed on a slave ad in 1858. So far, they are the only documented family member that were listed slaves.
Isaac was the only known member in his family that carried the Blakey surname. All the others including his parents, Andrew and Julia choose the White surname. Isaac was one of 12 children.
Isaac was the father of about 20 children. His first wife, Martha (Scott) Blakey gave birth to twins sons. She later passed with her son, Andrew. The other son was my Grandfather, John Blakey / Blakley.
Isaac’s second wife was Rachel, Jackson / Lephridge Blakey. She was the mother of Isaac’s 18 children. She raised my Grandfather, John. She passed in 1916.
I believe that I’ll have the opportunity to meet my ancestors who fell asleep in the LORD face to face, when the time comes. They paved the way for us. I’m thankful to be on their family lineage.
Thanks for reading.
God bless you.
S. A. Blakley