Was James Roper lucky to be born a mulatto and the only child of his father?
Let me introduce you to James Roper who was born 12 May 1783 in Jefferson County, Virginia. James died 8 Dec 1867 in Jefferson County, Virginia. His father is Nickolas Roper who was born 22 Jan 1739 in Suffolk, England. Nicholas died 13 Jan 1817 in Jefferson County, Virginia. James’ mother was a slave owned by Nicholas Roper. We do not know her name.
An interesting fact about James Roper, he is the only known and illegitimate son of Nicholas Roper. He freed his mulatto son at the age of 11, who becomes the largest landowner in Jefferson County, Virginia, which is now West Virginia. (Jefferson County becomes Jefferson County in 1801, and the state becomes West Virginia in June 1863. Nicholas also gave James a 99-year lease on all his holdings. So what that also means is James becomes a slave owner as well, just like his father. Was James, born as a slave-lucky? He is freed and inherits land and becomes well respected. Hmmm…
My connection to the Roper’s is three of my 2x great grandmother Mary Catherine Goens/Goings/Goins siblings married three of James Roper’s grandchildren.
Visit the website to see a photo of James, his emancipation paper, deeds for the buying and selling land, etc.: http://nicholasroper.com/index.html The website was developed by distance cousins Jacqueline Milburn and Judy Meade.