Huffords and slavery in the U.S.A.

First, few HUFFORD descendants held people as slaves.

Second, some HUFFORD descendants did hold people as slaves.

Third, at least two HUFFORD descendants were born into slavery.

That set of realities will shock many Hufford descendants who are generations deep in the Brethren Church. The German Baptist Brethren, also known as the Dunkers, also known as the Church of the Brethren, began in Germany in 1708. Like the Mennonites and the Quakers, the Brethren are Anabaptists and pacifists. And, like the Mennonites and the Quakers, the Brethren strongly opposed slavery. "Throughout their history, the church strongly opposed slavery and barred members from holding slaves. Particularly in Maryland, some African Americans joined the church. In 1835, delegates at the annual meeting debated and affirmed that membership should be the same for people regardless of color."

What is below is from the Church of the Brethren web site. Exact page is HERE. This was the Brethren response to slavery:

What did the Dunkers believe concerning slavery, at the official denominational level? Since the Dunkers or Brethren had migrated from Pennsylvania into a few southern States (Maryland, Virginia) with significant slave populations, the issue of slavery would inevitably confront them denominationally at their Annual Conference. The earliest record of an official mention was in their Annual Conference minutes for 1797, held at Blackwater, Virginia: “It was considered good, and also concluded unanimously, that no brother or sister should have negroes as slaves; and in case a brother or sister had such he or she was to set them free.” This had the effect of barring members from Communion and even disfellowshipping those who persisted in retaining slaves. Again the issue was similarly reflected in the minutes of the 1813 Conference held at Coventry, Pennsylvania.

But how did the Dunkers feel about having slaves or negroes in full membership status? The first mention is found in the 1835 Conference minutes from Cumberland County, Pennsylvania: “It is considered, that inasmuch as the gospel is to be preached to all nations and races, and if they come as repentant sinners, believing in the gospel of Jesus Christ, and apply for baptism, we could not confidently refuse them.

Should members “hire” slaves from slaveholders, thus evading any ruling concerning ownership while still enjoying the benefits of their labor? It was a very common practice in slave States for people to hire slaves from their masters under a contractual agreement: so many slaves, for so much work, for such a period of time. Questions regarding slavery or related matters repeatedly came to the Dunker or Brethren Annual Conference for consideration, but one of the more definitive pronouncements is found in the minutes of the 1855 Conference held at Linville Creek, Virginia: “We, the Brethren of Augusta, Upper and Lower Rockingham, Shenandoah, and Hardy counties having in general council meeting assembled at the church on Linville Creek; and having under consideration the following questions concerning those Brethren holding slaves at this time and who have not complied with the requisition of Annual Meeting of 1854, conclude: That they make speedy preparation to liberate them either by emancipation or by will, that this evil may be banished from among us, as we look upon slavery as dangerous to be tolerated in the church; it is tending to create disunion in the Brotherhood, and is a great injury to the cause of Christ and the progress of the church. So unitedly we exhort our brethren humbly, yet earnestly and lovingly, to clear themselves of slavery, and that they may not fail and come short of the glory of God, at the great and notable day of the Lord. Furthermore, concerning Brethren who hire a slave or slaves, and paying wages to their owners, we do not approve of it. The same is attended with evil which is combined with slavery. It is taking hold of the same evil which we cannot encourage, and should be banished and put from among us, and cannot be tolerated in the church.

Long before cannons sounded in Charleston harbor, the Dunkers repeatedly gave clear and unambiguous official statements regarding their beliefs over the issue of slavery. It was an “evil” that could not be “tolerated in the church” because the “gospel of Jesus Christ was to be preached in all nations to all races.”

Quotes within the above are from the Rev. Freeman Ankrum's 1962 book Sidelights of Brethren History, published by the Brethren Press, Elgin, IL.

Hans Jorich HOFFART and his wife (Anna Margaretha MOST) joined the Brethren Church in Europe. (Information is from Martin Grove Brumbaugh's 1899 book A History of the German Baptist Brethren, published by Brethren Publishing House, Mount Morris, IL; reprinted 1961.) On 15-Sep-1729, Hans Jorich Hoffart arrived in Philadelphia with his wife, their son Christian (b. 1716), and their daughter Anna Margaretha (b. abt 1720). A few months later, Hans Jorich's daughter Anna Christina (b. 1706) arrived in Philadelphia; she and her husband (Johann Casper CREAGER) had delayed departure because Anna Christina was pregnant with her first child, who was born 5-Sep-1729. (Hans Jorich and his family traveled to Philadelphia with Alexander Mack, the first minister for the Brethren.)

Before explaining who were the two known HUFFORD descendants born into slavery, there will need to be a foundation laid:

  • Hans Jorich's daughter Anna Christina had a son Conrad CREAGER, born in 1735, in Oley Hills, Montgomery Co., Pennsylvania. Conrad married Anna Marie EADER. Census records and Conrad's will clearly show that Conrad Creager held slaves. The 1800 census of Liberty, Frederick Co., Maryland shows Conrad's household having four slaves in addition to the six persons described as "free and white." Sex and ages of the persons enslaved is unknown. Conrad's will (dated October 13, 1807) says this: "Having give[n] to my son Henry [the] Negro Mace, I now bequeath my slave Dick to my son Daniel as a slave. I give and bequeath to my beloved wife Mary [Anna Marie] my slave Polly." In other words, in October 1807, there were at least three people held as slaves in Conrad's household: a man named "Mace," a man named "Dick," and a woman named "Polly."
  • Conrad and his wife Anna Marie had a daughter Elizabeth CREAGER, born in 1769 and christened in the St. Peter Rocky Hill Lutheran Church in Woodsboro, Frederick County, Maryland, on July 1, 1769. (Although Brethren officially did not practice infant baptism, in the early years, it was not uncommon for Brethren to baptize infants and affiliate with other community churches.) In 1788, Elizabeth married John Jacob LINK; Elizabeth and John Jacob grew up on neighboring farms. Before 1795, they moved to Jefferson County, Virginia (now West Virginia), and before 1803 they moved to Bourbon County, Kentucky. According to the 1820 census and the 1840 census, John Jacob Link held slaves. In 1820, he held two slaves: a man between the ages of 14 and 25, and a woman between the ages of 26 and 44. In 1840, he held four slaves: 1 male under 10; 1 male 10-23; 1 male 36-54; 1 female 10-23.
  • In 1805, Elizabeth CREAGER and John Jacob LINK had a son born: Enoch LINK. Enoch was a great-great-grandson of Hans Jorich HOFFART. Enoch married his 3rd cousin, Susan HUFFORD, another great-great-grandchild of Hans Jorich HOFFART. Enoch's wife Susan bore him no children. Enoch was born in 1805; his wife was born in about 1815. When they married is unknown, but they were married by the 1850 census. It is unlikely that they married before Susan was 20, which suggests they married between 1835 and 1850.

A few years before or after Enoch Link's marriage to Susan, an enslaved woman gave birth to Enoch's daughter. The child was born in about 1842 and named "Sallie" or "Sally." Almost certainly, she was born in Scott Co., Kentucky, on land owned by Enoch or his family. With America's system of slavery, Sally was born as a slave.

It is reasonable to guess that by 1842, this group of HUFFORD descendants no longer had any connection to the Brethren Church.

By 1870, Sally was a free woman, thanks to the Civil War, and she was living in her father's household, carrying his name. Below is a snippit from the 1870 census for Newtown Precinct # 8, Scott Co., Kentucky (Georgetown post office); June 23, 1870; page # 52, beginning at line 30, with Enoch LINK listed as head of household:
CLICK for large size image
The census taker had some cross-outs. One cross-out (initially having listed the last name as "Enoch" and then changing it to "Link") is insignificant. However, five cross-outs are of interest and will be explained later.

After the census taker's correction of last name, line 30 has the following information:
LINK, Enoch, age 64, male, white, Farmer.

The straight line under "Link" at the front of the next six names was census notation to mean that the person's last name was the same as the name above.

Thus, the information on line 31 is this:
LINK, Susan, age 54, female, white, Keeping house.

Lines 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, and 36 are the keys to the puzzle. The names are as follow:
LINK, Sullie (poor handwriting for "Sallie"), age 29, white, female, Keeping house.
LINK, Jeff, age 6, male, white.
LINK, Charles, age 4, male, white.
LINK, Boon, age 2, male, white.
LINK, Lizzie, age 7 months, (incorrectly coded as male, despite obvious female name), white.

The final three lines in that household are the following:
BROWN, Delia, age 15, male (name indicates female), black, Domestic Servant.
WILLIS, James, age 13, male, black, Farming.
BROWN, John, age 13, male, black, Farming.

Here were the census taker's options for color:

Color.--White (W.), Black (B.), Mulatto (M.), Chinese (C.), Indian (I.)

Look back at the 1870 census image for Sallie, Jeff, Charles, Boon, and Lizzie. The census taker initially marked "M" in each case. Then, there is a heavy mark-over of "W." In other words, Sallie, Jeff, Charles, Boon, and Lizzie initially were reported as "mulatto," but then changed to "white." And all five, of course, are carrying the family name of the white, male head of household. (Later records show that the four children were Sally's children by Benjamin BISHOP, a white man born in about 1820 in Kentucky.)

Additionally, consider that there were three in the household who were not given the name LINK -- the domestic servant and the two young farmhands. In other words, it was not a case of the census taker simply assigning all in the household the same last name as the head-of-household. And, consider Sallie's description: "Keeping house." She was not listed as a "domestic servant," as was one woman in the household; rather, Sallie was listed as "Keeping house." That phrase alone indicates that she was a part of the family, and not a "domestic servant."

Both Sally and her oldest son, Jeff, had been born into slavery. Jeff, actually Jefferson C. BISHOP, was born January 23, 1864, in Scott Co., Kentucky. Although President Lincoln had issued two Emancipation Proclamations (Sept. 1862 and Jan. 1863), neither dealt with slaves in the border states of Kentucky, Missouri, Maryland, or Delaware. Sally and her son Jefferson (Enoch's grandson) were born into slavery and remained so until April 9, 1865, when Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered his army at Appomattox.

Thus, two HUFFORD descendants were born into slavery: Sally and her son Jefferson.

Sally is found in her father's list of slaves on the 1860 Slave Schedule, District 2, Scott Co., KY:

The above images, cut and re-sized to allow for showing the important parts of a census page. Listed are three slave owners: Eli HUFFARD, Mary Ann HUFFARD, and Enoch LINK.
Eli Huffard was the paternal half-uncle of Enoch's wife. Mary Ann Hufford was the never-married paternal half-aunt of Enoch's wife. Eli and Mary Ann also were HUFFORD cousins of Enoch Link. Here is a list of the nine people whom Enoch held as slaves:

female, 40, black
female, 17, mulatto (The "17" could also be "19.")
male, 14, black
female, 10, black
male, 6, black
female, 4, black
male, 3, black
male, 3, black
male, 1, black

Sally was the 17- or 19-year-old mulatto female on that list.

Below is a list of Sally's father's slaves on the 1850 slave schedule for District 1, Scott Co., Kentucky, with Sally showing as seven years old:
30-year-old male, mulatto
14-year-old female, black
12-year-old female, mulatto
7-year-old female, mulatto
4-year-old male, black

CREDITS: Genealogist Sandra G. Craighead is to be credited with the above research and analysis which she did before 2000. She shared the results with some of the descendants of Sally's daughter Elizabeth, who shared it among themselves. Then, in March 2008, a great-great-grandson of Sally posted the information online, HERE, at the genforum LINK family forum.

Who was Sally's mother? All that is known is that she was a woman held as a slave sometime around 1840. According to the 1840 slave schedule for Bourbon Co., Kentucky, Enoch Link held six people as slaves in 1840, when Enoch would have been about 35:
1 male under 10
1 male from 10 to 23
2 females under 10
2 females from 10 to 23

Enoch lived in a family situation where other family members also held slaves. It's possible that Sally's mother was enslaved by one of Enoch's relatives.

Another possibility is that Sally's mother was the 40-year-old woman with whom Sally was listed on the 1860 slave schedule. The 1860 listing could be a family grouping, with all the children of one 40-year-old woman.

All four of Sally's children were fathered by Benjamin BISHOP. According to oral history, Sally and Benjamin had attempted to live openly as husband and wife after the Civil War, but they were not allowed to do so because Benjamin was "white" and Sally was "mulatto."

By 1870, Benjamin had disappeared from the records and is presumed dead. In 1872, Sally's father died. Sally was listed on the 1880 census as Sally WILLIAMS. She was by then living with Peter Williams, although both were noted as "single" on the census. Below are snippits from that census:

1880 U.S. Census; Bourbon Co., KY; June 18, 1880; page 40; Enumeration District 16. Sallie is on line 9. She was listed as a servant in the George ASHURST household. (Ashurst's wife was born Martha "Mattie" AKER.) With Sallie were her son Boon/e and her daughter "Lizzie" (Elizabeth). All three were listed as "B" for "black." (Recall that in 1870 they were listed first as "M" for "mulatto" and then "W" for "white.") Sallie reported both her father and mother as born in Kentucky.

Sallie's son Charles is listed in the household just above Sallie; listed as Charles BISHOP, age 14 and "B" for "black." The household Charles was living in was headed by 62-year-old Rebecca AKER, the mother of George Ashurst's wife.

Sallie's son Jefferson was living a little farther from her, but still in Bourbon County:
1880 U.S. Census; District 17, Paris, Bourbon Co., Kentucky; Enumeration District 17, page 23, line 33; June 15, 1880. He was living as a boarder in the household of 80-year-old Lloyd JAMES, a man born in Maryland and noted as "B" for "black." Jefferson is listed as "Jeff BISHOP," age 16, working as a laborer, born in Kentucky of Kentucky-born parents, and noted as "M" for "mulatto."

Reportedly, Sallie died of tuberculosis in 1883. Sallie's pedigree and deceased descendants can be found HERE, with a search for "Sally Link." (In early 2018, problems with the rootsweb service are such that one must used the "Advanced Search" feature.)

In 1900, Sallie's children (HUFFORD descendants, every one) were here:

  • Jefferson BISHOP: a corporal in the U.S. Navy, Co. H, 48th Infantry Regt; stationed in the Philippines Islands. He listed his hometown as Paris, KY, and his home address as 7th street, the same street where his brother Charles lived.
  • Charles W. BISHOP: a fireman, living with his wife and two sons, in Paris, Bourbon Co., KY.
  • Boone BISHOP: not found on the 1900 census; however, in November 1899, in Paris, Bourbon Co., KY, he married Elizabeth "Bettie" DAVIS. That information is found in "A Partial Listing of the Marriage Register of Colored Persons in Bourbon Co., KY, 1866 - 1920," found HERE. (Boone was a farmer, working on land owned by others.)
  • Elizabeth "Lizzie" BISHOP, Mrs. John Henry GRANT: a minister's wife and the mother of two little boys, living in Frankfort, Franklin Co., Kentucky.

By 1900, the same four children who were "white" in 1870 were "black." Regardless of how they were labeled on any form, all were descendants of Hans Jorich HOFFART and Anna Margaretha MOST, two Germans who came to America in 1729.

Possibility that Enoch Link fathered a 2nd child with an enslaved woman:

There is another record regarding Enoch Link that indicates the possibility that Enoch Link fathered a second child with an enslaved woman. The record is from "Kentucky Birth Records, 1852-1910," and it shows that there was a child named Frank, born alive in December 1853 in Scott County, Kentucky. The child was listed as having an "owner" rather than a "father." Owner was listed as Enoch Link. No mother was named; child was listed as "mulatto." The "resident of parent" was listed as Scott County.

There's no doubt that the Enoch Link in that record is the same Enoch Link discussed above. Enoch was living in Scott County in both 1850 and 1860. The 1860 Slave Schedule for Scott County (shown above) shows Enoch holding one 40-year-old woman. What happened to Frank is not known.

The record is shown, in reduced size, and with all extra names remove from the page. The only other name left is the name of Enoch Smith Hufford, born nine months before Frank. IF Frank was the son of Enoch Link, the two babies were 1st cousins, once-removed. Enoch S. Hufford's information is on the top line; he was born in March 1853. Frank, whose owner was Enoch Link, in on the bottom line; he was born in December 1853.

First image shows the listings across the two pages, with the black line in the middle being the fold of the pages at the book binding. Click on the image to see a larger size:
CLICK to see large size.

Second image is the left-hand page. It has these columns: Date of Birth; Name; Sex; Condition; Place of Birth; and Name of Father or Owner of Child. For Enoch (child on the top line), under the father/owner column it says, "John H. Hufford, Fath." For Frank (child on the bottom line), under father/owner it says, "Enoch Link (")." The ditto marks in parentheses are to ditto the the line above (omitted here) which had the word "Owner." Click on the image to see a larger size:
CLICK to see large size.

Third image is the right-hand page. It has these columns: Maiden name of Mother; Color of Child (White, Mulatto, Black); Residence of Parent. The maiden name is given for the mother of the child Enoch: Sarah E. Simmons. For the child Frank, no mother's name is given, and the child is listed as "Mulatto." Click on the image to see a larger size:
CLICK to see large size.

Below is information about other HUFFORDs who held slaves. However, in fairness to the HUFFORD family, it should be noted that many HUFFORD descendants were in the Union Army during the Civil War, fighting against slavery, and some of them died from their service. HERE is information about those HUFFORD descendants known to have served in the Union Army during the Civil War.

Other HUFFORDs who held slaves:


Barbara was the 76-year-old widow of Daniel Hoffart, son of Christian. Barbara also was Enoch Link's wife's widowed step-grandmother. Barbara is listed just below Enoch on the 1850 Slave Schedule.

From the 1850 Slave Schedule for District 1, Scott Co., Kentucky:

  • male, 40, black
  • female, 14, black
  • male, 10, black

Elizabeth HUFFORD

Elizabeth was the widow of Joseph Hufford, Jr., who was the son of Joseph Hufford b. 1785, who was the son of Daniel Hoffart. Joseph Hufford Jr.'s mother was Mary Link, the sister of Enoch Link.

From the 1850 Slave Schedule for District 1, Woodford Co., Kentucky:

  • male, 58, black
  • female, 14, black

From the 1860 Slave Schedule for Clay Twp., Lafayette Co., Missouri:

  • male, 17, black


John was the son of Daniel Hoffart. He was a blacksmith.

From the 1850 Slave Schedule for District 2, Harrison Co., KY:

  • female, 50, black
  • male, 20, black
  • female, 15, black
  • female, 14, black
  • male, 11, black


James was the son of John and the grandson of Daniel Hoffart

From the 1860 Slave Schedule for Peno, Pike Co., Missouri:

  • female, 52, black
  • male, 38, black
  • male, 36, black
  • male, 22, black
  • female, 22, black
  • male, 19, black
  • female, 10, black
  • male, 6, black
  • male, 4, black
  • female, 3, black
  • female, 1, black

Under the column for "number manumitted," it reports "2."


John Harvey Hufford was the son of Jacob H. Hufford and the grandson of Daniel Hoffart. John Harvey's mother was Mary LINK, the sister of Enoch Link. (Mary Link first married Joseph Hufford Sr.; after he died, she married his brother Jacob.)

From the 1850 Slave Schedule for District 1, Scott Co., KY:

  • female, 12, black

David Jacob LINK

David was the son of Israel E. LINK and Elizabeth C. HUFFORD. David's father descended from Anna Christina HOFFART (b. 1706); David's mother descended from Christian HOFFART (b. 1716) (through Christian's son Daniel). David served in the Confederate Army during the U.S. Civil War.

From the 1860 Slave Schedule for Carroll Township, Platte Co., Missouri:

  • female, 22, black
  • female, 3, black
  • male, 2, black


Eli was the son of Elizabeth CREAGER, who was the granddaughter of Anna Christina HOFFART (b. 1706), who was the daughter of Hans Jorich HOFFART.

From the 1860 Slave Schedule for Versailles, Woodford Co., Kentucky:

  • male, 50, black
  • female, 11, black
  • male, 9, black
  • male, 6, black
  • female, 4, black

Israel E. LINK

Israel was the son of Elizabeth CREAGER, who was the granddaughter of Anna Christina HOFFART (b. 1706), who was the daughter of Hans Jorich HOFFART.

From the 1860 Slave Schedule for Versailles, Woodford Co., Kentucky:

  • male, 50, black
  • female, 23, black
  • male, 20, black
  • male, 4, black
  • male, 2, mulatto

Catherine PAYNE

Catherine was the daughter of John STONE and Deborah HUFFORD, who was the daughter of Daniel, who was the son of Christian b. 1716 in Schwaigern.

From the 1860 Slave Schedule for Versailles, Woodford Co., Kentucky:

  • female, 40, black

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Alice is a member of the D.C. Bar.
She does genealogical research for the same reason some women do needlepoint
-- purely for pleasure.