JUST LIKE FAMILY, a project of Shared History, explores the lives of African American women who raised white children from the point of view of the adult white children and their biological counterparts—the adult children of these women. The book and film THE HELP have inspired many white people to remember their childhood attachments to African American women who worked as maids for their families. Many who were raised by these women maintained or continue to maintain emotional connections with them. JUST LIKE FAMILY is a blog that will provide articles about the issues of these connections, narratives of the memories of individuals as well as video interviews of family members. Please join the conversation by providing your comments.
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Felicia included this part just for me – Tomaca (Govan) – but I thought I would include it because it serves as a message to everyone that we are not quite so very distant from each other and we just never know…. : )
My connection to the Govans:
The Govans of Bamberg, County, South Carolina, who are connected to Woodlands Plantation, include both Black and white people. I descend from Govans who were from Orangeburg, SC, across the Edisto River from Woodlands. They married into the family of Roach, whose son-in-law was William Gilmore Simms. A list of freedman at Woodlands after the Civil War include a Jacob Govan and Dina Govan. Jacob Govan is part of a list of slaves receiving shoes and cloth at Woodlands in 1846. Jacob Govan and wife Venus are listed in the 1870 Midway, South Carolina, census, the first US Federal Census that listed African American by name. William Govan, Romeo Govan, and W. Govan (listed as 60, mulatto) also appear in later population censes of the Midway section. Many white and black Govans still live in the Midway section of South Carolina.