African American Lives 2 -- Hosted by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
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Cassie Currie Kirby, my great-grandmother and my mother and aunts. Brownsville, TN and North Carolina 1800s Brownsville, TN and North Carolina My Great-Grandmother Cassie Currie Kirby told us stories of the family

My great-gandmother, Cassie Currie Kirby, died in 1993 at the age of 110. She loved her family history and told it often to those who would listen and I did.

Our journey started long ago. It was with Nancy and Harry Currie was born slaves in North Carolina, (not sure of the city). Nancy had 2 sisters and 1 brother. May (Macklin – some date associated with her of 8-5-1942) , Ida (Dec. 3. 1912?) and Rueben (They were all sold to slavery).

Nancy and Harry had a daughter, Edmonia Currie. Edmonia married Horace (born 1853, died 2-28-1895). Edmonia and Horace owned a home of their own on the (supposedly) Currie Plantation. Edmonia and Horace eventually moved to Brownsville, TN and raised their children. They often shopped in Henning, TN and even know of Alex Haley's family.

Edmonia and Horace has 20 children. Jim, Jesse, George (born 7-21-1894), Eddie, Johnny, Reuben, Cora (bord 8-3-1879), Minor, Cornelia, LeAnn, Liza, Josie, Cecil (died 6-11-1918) and Cassie (granny), (don’t have the others names, because seven of them were sold as slaves and Cassie never knew them). They lived there until Edmonia died at the age of 68 years old. No record of Horace death date.

Cassie’s husband - Fletcie Kirby (Bee-Bop) was born on January 13, 1882 at home also. His mother Margaret Drake (West Indian) and his father Christopher Kirby (Irish and Black). Fletcie had nine brothers and sisters.

Famie, Manie, Lacie, Eddie, Nicey, Will, Sanders, Mathes and Victor. Fletcie met and married Cassie on March 3, 1902. He was 19 years old. Fletcie fell in love with Cassie’s gently nature and strong womanhood. Cassie was a small and meek woman in frame, but she did not take any mess from anyone, especially Fletcie.

Cassie and Fletcie and their family lived in Brownsville, TN until they moved to Detroit, MI

Cassie and Fletcie moved to Detroit’s Black Bottom in 1927. The rest of the family soon followed. Fletcie worked at the Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan.

I have been on this quest now for over ten years, calling, emailing, searching for family members, I might have found a few of them in the Chicago, IL area. I was wondering if you could give me some tips where I can search further.

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