Wilcox County Black History


Growth Chart of Wilcox County's Slave & Black Population 1820-1880

Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations. Scroll down or use the "find" function of your browser to search for Wilcox County references.


The first recorded white resident to live in the area was Joseph Gee, a planter from Halifax, North Carolina, who came in 1816, established a plantation, and named the place for himself. Upon his death in 1824, he left 47 black slaves. Two of his North Carolina nephews, Sterling and Charles Gee, came to Alabama in the hopes of inheriting his estate. During the legal maneuverings, Sterling inherited a family estate back home and returned to live there. Charles became manager of the Gee's Bend plantation. Some people say the Bend accommodated a slave trading operation for the Gees between Alabama and North Carolina.

More about Gees Bend:

TENANT FARMERS. Documenting America - online exhibit of FSA B&W photographs. Photographer: Arthur Rothstein. Gee's Bend, Alabama, February and April 1937, Resettlement Administration, Lot 1616.

AP news story about the resumption of ferry service that also includes some history and background of Gees Bend. From the Nando Times, Jan. 1996.

Gee's Bend: Songs from Beyond the River. The companion site to Alabama Public Radio's radio-documentary.

Crossing Over. Pullitzer Prize-winning feature article written by J.R. Moehringer of the Los Angeles Times, Aug. 22, 1999. 


More about Snow Hill:

Twenty-Five Years in the Black Belt. Wilcox County at the turn of the century. The electronic edition of the autobiography of W.J. Edwards, founder of the Snow Hill Institute, a school for the education of Negro students.

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Black Families of Alabama's Black Belt