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Parsons and Abbott Roll

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By a treaty of March 24, 1832, the Creek Tribe ceded to the United States all of their land east of the Mississippi River. Heads of families were entitled to tracts of land, which, if possible, were to include their improvements. In 1833 Benjamin S. Parsons and Thomas J. Abbott prepared a census of Creek Indian heads of families, which gave their names and the number of males, females, and slaves in each family. The entries were arranged by town and numbered; these numbers were used for identification in later records.

The census of 1832/1833 has come to be called the Parsons and Abbott Roll, and is the most comprehensive pre-removal document, as it was the result of a village-to-village trek on the part of the census-takers, and contains the names of all the heads of households arranged by Creek towns. The genealogical researcher who is able to locate an ancestor on this document is most fortunate, as it forms the basis for many other documents relating to Creek claims cases through the 1960’s.

While few and far between, there are some free blacks listed within this census. Many slaves gained their freedom from their Creek Tribe; once their freedom was obtained, they often received citizenship within the tribe and several are listed by name.

Parsons and Abbott Roll

Land Cession 172

Designated as Land Cession #172 in the Alabama Map, this closeup depicts the land ceded by the Creek Indians as a result of the treaty of March 24, 1832.


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