James McKissic, Wilson Woods: From Bill of Sale to Prosperous Land Owner
Play • 40 min

James McKissic shares the legacy of his great great-great-grandfather, Wilson Woods, who was born into slavery in Meigs County, Tennessee during the 1820's. Wilson's mother was a slave named Mary, his father was also his owner. When Mr. Mckissic's mother shared his ancestor's 1862 bill of sale (between his two white half brothers), with James, he shared it with the National Museum of African American History which began a whole sequence of activities including a Washington Post article and being featured on the Historically Black podcast. Wilson's legacy includes the family farm which is still in the family today.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. article about Wilson Woods: https://www.theroot.com/tracing-your-roots-were-slaves-surnames-like-brands-1796141007

Washington Post, A Hunt for His Slave Ancestor's Bill of Sale Unearthed a Surprising History: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/arts-and-entertainment/wp/2016/10/03/a-hunt-for-his-slave-ancestors-original-bill-of-sale-unearthed-a-surprising-history/

Historically Black podcast about Wilson Woods:  https://www.apmreports.org/episode/2016/10/03/historically-black-slave-bill-of-sale

Washington Post article:

Chattanooga Times Free Press, New -found relatives gather after slave genealogy project helps them find their roots: https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/life/entertainment/story/2017/may/19/shaking-family-tree-new-found-relatives-gathe/428934/

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