finding your roots

The Knight Family Legacy

Peggy Parks Miller March 5, 2012

The story has it’s origins with the Knight family as plantation owners in Georgia in the early 1800s and traces their descendants for more than two centuries through available historical documents. To provide a complete historical account, our journey will take a candid view of the Knight family’s legacy from buying and selling slaves to a forbidden love that would transcend all class and racial barriers.

This story will cover the love, life and descendants of Retired Confederate Lieutenant Colonel John Knight and his union with his mulatto slave, Violet Perkerson Knight. John Knight’s role in the Civil War with the 41st Georgia Infantry Regiment, wounds he sustained at the Battle of Perryville, and his Prisoner of War status at the Battle of Vicksburg will also be examined. In one report filed by then “Major Knight” John Knight, he described in his own words the heat of battle in one of the most costliest wars in terms of human life in American History.

When John Knight left a Nuncupative Will on his deathbed leaving his plantation and estate to Violet Knight and their African American descendants, it would set off a court case of historical proportion. The court testimony will detail the quest by real and alleged creditors to stake their claim on the estate’s assets while John and Violet Knight’s son, Jacob C. Knight, did everything in his power to ensure his father’s deathbed wishes were carried out.

This story is told through the use of court documents, testimony, and other available historical documents. Slavery, a forbidden love, the Civil War, tragedy, death, and unprecedented court battle for control of the Knight estate by heirs and “a compromise….”

This story has it all.

I submit this book for your consideration for participation in one of your programs.

Peggy Parks Miller
Belleville, IL

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About the Series

The basic drive to discover who we are and where we come from is at the core of the new 10-part PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., the 12th series from Professor Gates, the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor at Harvard University and director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research. Filmed on location across the United States, the series premieres nationally Sundays, March 25 – May 20 at 8 pm ET on PBS (check local listings).

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