This is a copy of an actual slave record from 1853 for an infant girl named on the document as “Little Hannah.” The document states that on December 31, 1853 she was part of the estate of Thomas Bransford with a value of $90.
In Joy Medley Lyons book “Making Their Mark”: there is this interesting end note that read:
“Inventory and Sales, December 31, 1853, Book 7, Page 172, Barren County Clerk, Glasgow, KY. A child described as “Little Hannah” was also listed on the Bransford’s inventory of slaves. It is probable that this was Nick Bransford’s daughter, Hannah, who would have been an infant around this period of time. The identity of her mother is unknown.”
The copy of the document was sent to me by Sandra Gorin, a professional genealogist, who runs Gorin Genealogical Publishing http://www.gensoup.org/gorin/ She writes:
Attached is the document Joy referred to in her book. A couple of possibilities. Normally, they listed the mother with the child so you’d know! But there is no “Big Hannah” listed. I checked and found no birth or death records on any of these Bransford slaves – there was a short time when records were kept prior to the official birth and death certificates (1911) – but no luck on these. One more thing which might be a clue. On 26 May 1876 Hannah Bransford married William Garvin, the cave guide, in Edmonson Co. 16
was shown as age 16; he 25. If she was 16 in 1876, it means she was born ca 1860 give or take. If this was “little Hannah”, she was born 7 years after the distribution of Thomas Bransford’s slaves. But most didn’t know their actual age. Names were used and re-used for slaves which makes it harder.
Franklin Gorin was the owner of Mammoth Cave for a brief period from 1838 until it was purchased a little over a year later by Dr. John Croghan. He is sometimes a person lost in the shuffle when looking at the history of Mammoth Cave, but he must be credited with recognizing the potential for tourism at the cave, and he is also responsible bringing the slaves Stephen Bishop, Materson Bransford, and Nick Bransford to Mammoth Cave. About herself, Sandra Gorin writes:
My daughters are kin to Franklin, I am a Gorin by marriage. Their ancestor was the brother of Franklin’s father, John Gorin, who founded Glasgow. We came here 24 years ago because we had fallen in love with Glasgow and I am a researcher and author. Now I have such a limited time to work on the Gorin family since I’m helping others find their ancestors.