A Brief Family History
"We celebrate your yesterday, and We reach with you toward tomorrow"
Born into slavery, Peter Jones, Jackson’s grandfather “was one of the house slaves who took care of the house and served the people.” He was emancipated at the age of nine. Following emancipation, he bought 100 acres of land in Oconee County, South Carolina, that remained in the family for many generations. Jackson recalled her family’s estate as:
“Rich with marvelous forestry...the trees were in great demand because they were unusual trees. I don’t know what kind, but they were certainly very expensive and people who bought them had to pay a high price for the cost of those trees.”
He also farmed the land that he bought with most of his children pursuing farming as well. “Farming was a way of life in the early days,” Jackson noted. In total, her grandparents had six sons and three daughters – nine children in total.
While many of “the other brothers and sisters stayed,” Hazel’s father, Charlie Jones, left to become a tenant farmer before purchasing his own home.
After completing the 8th grade, which was equivalent to a high school education today, Hazel’s father, Charlie Jones, left the family home as many of “the other brothers and sisters [had] stayed.” For most of her early childhood, her family worked as tenant farmers. A home was purchased during this span of time but was lost “somehow in some fashion.”