Ezekiel and Patsy


During the eighteen hundredths, America was still in the early stages of being built out. Its vastness afforded its considerably tiny population the luxury of owning many acres of land. Thereby, for neighbors to live several miles from one another was a normal way of life. However, their connection and what they had in common, made them a closer nit people than what people are today. One example of that is that, even though Ezekiel came from Rowan County, North Carolina and John Coe from Surry. John was related to Ezekiel and his father by marriage. But to say that John and Ezekiel’s father were friends or ever interacted, would probably be like making a mountain out of a molehill. The two men simply were as different as night is to day. Therefore it’s believed that, when Ezekiel and John Coe first met, neither were aware of what they had in common. Patsy’s relationship to John Coe was even less noted, than that of Ezekiel. In fact it remained a secret for almost two hundred years.

The only known description of her is that, she was a pretty, and very light complexion little woman. Unlike Ezekiel, she really was a slave, and her mother and mother’s mother and father were also slaves. Prior to her arrival to Kentucky, she and her family were the property of a family named Glen. When John Coe took possession of her, she was thereafter considered to be his slave. But the truth of the matter is that, she wasn’t. He didn’t buy her and only he and a few others knew why she was there.

The Coes and the Glens’ relationship dates back to when, the two families were neighbors in Surry County, North Carolina. A marriage or two, further enhanced their relationship. Which made them blood kin? One might say, as their family, as well as families of others grew, they longed for land of their own. As a result of their wants and needs, many families left Surry and ¬†Rowan Counties in north Carolina and headed for places like Wilson and Overton Counties in Tennessee, and Monroe and Cumberland Counties in Kentucky. John Coe was one of those people and his departure occurred in 1810. Another noteworthy departure took place somewhere around the year 1817. It was when a man named Thompson Glen moved to Wilson County, Tennessee with his family and the slaves he owned (Patsy’s mother, whose name was Sukey, was amongst them). Another person, who is certain to have been one of the members of his party, was John Coe’s brother, Timothy. While in Wilson, it’s believed that Timothy Coe resided with Thompson Glen up until 1820. However, the events of that year, would leave a reasonable person scratching their head for answers. In that year, Timothy Coe purchased a tract of land adjoining that of Thompson Glen. Which wasn’t anything out of the normal? But what was, is that if he ever lived on the property he brought. It appeared that he didn’t live on it for long. What made Timothy Coe’s situation even the stranger still, is that his name appeared on the 1820 and 1821 Tax List of Monroe County, Kentucky. During that same period in time, Sukey gave birth to Patsy. Those several events by themselves seem meaningless. But when added together, they lead one to believe that Timothy Coe was Patsy’s father. And even though, the 1821 tax list was the last known record of Timothy Coe in Monroe County, Kentucky, it’s believed that he was there in 1840 when Patsy arrived in that same place.

Timothy Coe had several family members in Monroe County, and his brother John lived in the adjoining county of ¬†Cumberland. So his transition there was probably without any complications. Patsy on the other hand was a complete stranger, and her reason for being there was due to a series of misfortunes. Patsy’s previous owner, Thompson Glen died in 1822.

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