Jemima Smith Estate Appraisal, Scott County, KY 1858 – Releasing: Easter, Amos, Rachael and Jane

This Smith family is not related to my family. However, because four enslaved children were named in this estate inventory, with ages given, and the inventory is dated January 1858 in Scott County, Kentucky, perhaps their descendants will be able to find additional information about their ancestors.

Jemima Smith likely died sometime in 1857. She appears as the widowed head of a large household in Scott County, Kentucky in 1850:

Smith Family, 1850 in Scott County, KY
Source: FamilySearch

Jemima Smith, 59, born VA
John E., 26, born KY
Thomas J., 24, born KY
Mary, 22, born KY
Martha, 19, born KY
Sarah, 17, born KY
James L., 15, born KY
Louisa J., 4, born KY

My guess would be that Thomas and Mary are married and Louisa J. is their daughter and that John, Thomas, Martha, Sarah and James are all children of Jemima Smith.

The 1850 slave schedule includes Jemima Smith.

Five females are listed and one male. The two oldest females, aged 24 and 50, are not included in the appraisal of Jemima’s estate. It may well be that the 24 year old was the mother of the four children.

Scott County, KY WB N:7-8
Source: FamilySearch

The only portion of Jemima’s estate inventory of importance here is the top of the list:

One negro girl named Easter, 14 years, $750
One negro boy named Amos, 13 years, $600
One negro girl named Rachael, 12 years, $500
One negro girl named Jane, 10 years, $500

Jane’s birth is actually recorded, at least the month and year, in the 1850 slave schedule as she is almost certainly the two month old female enumerated. The schedule was recorded on 7 August 1850, so Jane would have been born in June 1850.

Lastly, here are the entries for Jemima Smith in the tax lists from 1850 until her death. The last 4 columns record #slaves over 16, total number of slaves, total value of slaves and #horses.


Not found in 1852, 1853 or 1854.


Not found in 1856 or1857.


Her estate was settled in December 1860 with heirs listed:

Scott County, KY WB N:462
Source: FamilySearch

A search of court records and land deeds might shed more light on what happened to the two enslaved females ages 24 and 50 who were enumerated in the 1850 census and provide further clues about Easter, Amos, Rachael and Jane.


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