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Clinton County

African American rural settlements documented: 0

In Clinton County, there was no substantial black population until after the 1870s, with an African Methodist Episcopal Church established about 1890.

The county was formed in 1830. According to the 1830 census, there was one free person of color that year; by the 1840 census that number had increased to 9.  As of 1850, however, there was only one black landowner, whose real estate was valued at $200. Some of the early settlers included the Adams and Bria families from Pennsylvania and the Copleys from North Carolina, who moved on to Cass County, Michigan by 1860. According to the 1870 census, the Lewis family from Virginia, the Carter family from Alabama and the Cambridge family from Kentucky had settled within the county. 


Ancestry.com. "U.S. Federal Census 1820-1870," accessed June 20, 2014.

Crenshaw, Gwen compiler. “Indiana African American Survey of Historic Sites and Structures,”  Library Collection, Indiana Landmarks State Headquarters, Indianapolis, 1994.

Heller, Herbert Lynn. "Negro Education in Indiana from 1816 to 1860." PhD dissertation, Indiana University, 1951.

Audrey C. Werle “Research Notes on Indiana African American History, M 792, William Henry Smith Memorial Library, Indiana Historical Society, Indianapolis, Indiana.

By Dona Stokes-Lucas, July 18, 2014