by AUDREY CREEL / December 23, 2020
©Audrey Creel, 2020 (All rights reserved.)
Benj. Maney was born in approximately 1820 in Tennessee.[i] It is unknown where Benj was enslaved prior to emancipation. Dr. James Maney is the only member of the Maney family to have enslaved a man approximately Benj’s age in 1860.[ii] Benj Maney likely was enslaved on the Maney plantation (present day Oaklands Mansion) along with his inferred wife, Sylvia Maney.[iii] David Maney also enslaved a man slightly younger than Benj. Maney in 1860, so it is possible that Benj was enslaved by David Maney, and his age was listed incorrectly.[iv]
There is very little information known about Benj. Maney after the Civil War. It appears that Benj. Maney likely married Sylvia Maney following the Civil War. There is no known marriage record between Benj and Sylvia, so it is also possible that they never legally married. In 1870, Benj and Sylvia lived in Murfreesboro, Tennessee with three children: Benj., Luke, and Jacob.[v] Benj worked as a farm laborer in Tennessee, though it is unknown by whom he was employed. [vi] Benj likely died shortly after 1870 as he does not appear in any further census records. It is unknown when or how Benj died.
[i] United States Census, “Maney, Benj.,” 1870 United States Census, 1870, accessed December 21, 2020 from ancestry.com database, https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/7163/images/4275524_00058?treeid=&personid=&hintid=&queryId=e9474401ca41c3516586118be68b97f3&usePUB=true&_phsrc=Kxs369&_phstart=successSource&usePUBJs=true&_ga=2.169902505.882264017.1599938151-1700215809.1599080803&pId=7435418.
[ii] United States Census, “James Manny,” 1860 United States Census – Slave Schedule, 1860, accessed December 21, 2020 from ancestry.com database, https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/7668/images/tnm653_1285-0152?treeid=&personid=&rc=&usePUB=true&_phsrc=iaY492&_phstart=successSource&pId=92227684.
[iii] Bill of Sale, “Joseph Spence To: Bill of Sale James Maney,” September 21, 1859, from Oaklands Mansion archives.
[iv] United States Census, “D.D. Many,” 1860 United States Census – Slave Schedule, 1860, accessed December 21, 2020 from familysearch.org database, https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-9BSD-FR2?cc=3161105&personaUrl=%2Fark%3A%2F61903%2F1%3A1%3AWKT5-VW6Z.
[v] United States Census, “Maney, Benj.,” 1870 United States Census.
[vi] United States Census, “Maney, Benj.,” 1870 United States Census.