About the Collection

The Emily Clarkson Ball Grainger Family Papers, 1839-1962 (bulk 1926-1950) collection contains two letters sent to William Clarkson in 1839 and 1842.  

Alexander Ketsall Ball (1883-1958) was born in Cordesville, S.C. and lived in Virginia and North Carolina. His wife Emily Heyward Clarkson (1889-1968) was the daughter of Emily Barnwell Heyward (1855-1928) and Alexander Garden Clarkson (1854-1924), son of William Clarkson (1807-1858), a Richland District, S.C. plantation owner whose enslaved persons were ministered to by Rev. N.B. Screven at a chapel established on Clarkson land called Wateree (a church later to be known as Zion, in Eastover). Alexander Garden Clarkson (1854-1924) was also the father of Willian Anderson Clarkson (1886-1930), an attorney of Columbia (S.C.) who received a citation for bravery during his military service in Europe in World War I. Alexander Ketsall Ball (1883-1958) was the father of Isaac Rhett Ball (b. 1912), Alexander Ketsall Ball, Jr. (b. 1913), Emily Clarkson Ball (b. 1916), Garden Clarkson Ball (b. 1920), and Nathaniel Heyward Ball (1920-1944), who was killed in action in the Philippines during World War II. A relative of Alexander Ketsall Ball, Jane Ball (b. 1823), daughter of Isaac Ball and Elizabeth G. Poyas, married John Gibbes Shoolbred (1821-1842). Emily Clarkson Ball (b. 1916) was dean of women at Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia. She married Rev. John Cameron Grainger in 1948.  

 The first letter in the collection is written by Reverend Napoleon B. Screven requesting William Clarkson to convey “Christian exhortation” to his enslaved persons as well as the inability to sell the wife of an enslaved man. The second letter is composed of two torn letters written by Reverend Richard Johnson and M. Johnson discussing better accommodations for the “coloured people” of the parish.

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