Search billions of records on

Ohio African American Obituaries

Submitted by: Lace Lynch of the

                      Multicultural Genealogical Society


Name: BOLDEN, Daniel

Date of Notice: 10 September 1918

Daniel Bolden, aged 96, one of the oldest and most highly respected colored residents of this city, was found dead on the floor of the kitchen of his home, 419 Muskingum avenue, at 11:30 a.m. Thursday morning. Apoplexy is given as the cause of his death. Mr. Bolden, despite his age, was able yo be about the streets and was in his usual health Tuesday morning.
Mr. Bolden was a native of Dresden (Ohio) but had been a resident of this city for the past 75 years. He was a prominent member of the South street M. E. church and was held in the highest respect by all who knew him.
Surviving are his widow and the following children: The Misses Carrie, Rosetta and Nellie of the home; Bert, Daniel, Louis and Edward Bolden, all of this city; Mrs. Melissa Decker, Mrs. Caroline emmen of Vicksburg, Mich.; and by three stepchildren, Mrs. Mary Cook of this city; Mrs. Eliza Walker of Trinway and Wesley Bolden of Dresden.

Zanesville Signal
Monday, September 10, 1918

Discrepancy Note: In the obituary of Lavina Bolden, his wife, Two of her daughters are listed as: Mrs. Mercy Decker of Vicksburg, Mich and Clara Ann Simmons of Battle Creek, Mich


Name: BOLDEN, Louis H. (Sr.)

Date of Notice: 17 June 1962

Louis H. Bolden, Sr., 83, of 434 Cliffwood avenue, Zanesville, Ohio died at his home at 5:30 a.m. Sunday (June 17, 1962) after a three month illness.
He was born at Vicksburg, Mich., son of Daniel and Lavina Robinson Bolden. He spent most of his life in Zanesville.
Surviving are a son, Louis Jr. of the home; two daughters, Mrs. Catherine Clinton of 511 Limestone street and Mrs. Mildred Allen of Pontiac, Mich.; two grandchildren. His wife Mary Holly died in 1950,

Burial: Woodlawn cemetery, Zanesville, Ohio


Name: BOLDEN, William H.

Date of Notice: 1908

William H. Bolden, died at the family home on Crown street (Zanesville, Ohio) at 4 o'clock Friday afternoon after an illness extending over a period of about twenty-eight months. Although he had been ill for so long a time, the end came very suddenly, his condition becoming critical about 2 o'clock, Friday afternoon.
The deceased was a well known colored barber and had been a resident for many years. He was born in Dresden in 1848 and was therefore 60 years of age. Mr. Bolden was widely known in the city and was especially popular among the colored citizens. He was forced to retire from the barber business over a year ago on account of failing health.
Mr. Bolden served during the war of the rebellion in the army of the North, and was a brave and trusted soldier. He was a member of the G. A. R., and was also prominenently identified with the colored Odd Fellows and Masonic lodges of the city. He is survived by a widow and one son, Edward C. Bolden of this city.
The funeral services will be held at 2 o'clock Sunday afternoon, and will be conducted by the Rev. John Farley.

Note: G.A.R. records state he was a Pvt. Co. E. 27th U. S. Colored Inf.


Name: BROOKS, Cary Jackson

Date of Notice: 27 April 1959
Source: Cleveland Press; Cleveland Necrology File, Reel #120.
Brooks Cary Jackson was a retired barber, an enthusiastic gardener and an active worker in Mount Pleasant Methodist Church. He was the father of Municipal Court Judge Perry B. Jackson, Mr. Jackson died yesterday of a heart attack in his home at 3227 E. 130th St. He was 81 and lived in Zanesville before moving to Cleveland in 1923. He was born in Little Washington, O. A barber for more than a half century, he operated a shop for 20 years in the Playhouse Square Area. Survivors are his wife, Ida; two sons, Judge Jackson and Rolland E. Jackson; three daughters, Mrs. Webster Estell, Mrs. Arthur Grant and Mrs. Mildred Stovail. Services will be at 1 p. m. tomorrow in Mount Pleasant. Methodist Church. Friends may call at the Boyd Funeral Home, 2165 E. 89th St.

Name: BROWN, Charles Ellis

Date of Notice: 23 August 1952
Source: Cleveland Press; Cleveland Necrology File, Reel #096.
Charles Ellis Brown. For the past 12 years, Charles Ellis Brown, 48, was a waiter in the Hotel Statler dining room. He died yesterday of a heart attack in his home, 1096 E. 97th St. Born in Zanesville, Mr. Brown came here 20 years ago. He was a member of the Mount Zion Congregational Church, the Walter's Club and the Vagabond Social Club. Mr. Brown is survived by his wife, Mrs. Evelyn R. Brown, and a son, Charles Ellis Jr.; his mother, Mary E., a brother, James S., and a sister, Mrs. Elizabeth Lett. Friends may call at the E. F. Boyd & Son Funeral Home, 2165 E. 89th St. Funeral services will be at 1:30 p. m. Tuesday with burial in Lake View Cemetery.


Name: DEMBY, Mrs. Antoinette Ricks
Date of Notice: 17 May 1957
Source: Plain Dealer; Cleveland Necrology File, Reel #104.
Notes: Mrs. Antoinette Ricks Demby, an early graduate of Oberlin College and the first Negro registered nurse in Cleveland, will be buried in Lake View Cemetery after services at 11 a.m. today in Trinity Episcopal Cathedral. She died Wednesday in a private nursing home at the age of 87. She was the wife of the retired Suffragan Bishop Edward T. Demby of the Episcopal Diocese of Arkansas. The family home is at 10519 Englewood Avenue N.E. Mrs. Demby was a graduate of Friedman Hospital Nurses' Training School in Washington. She did hospital and private duty nursing in the South. In early years after, college graduation she taught school in Nashville, Tenn. For some years after her marriage in 1902, she and her husband resided in Little Rock, Ark. They returned to Cleveland in 1934. Her husband is her only surviving relative.

Name: FIELDING, William R.

Date of Notice: 15 July 1886

Death of William R. Fielding.
William R. Fielding was known to almost every resident of Kokomo. He was a colored man, a barber by occupation, and had been a resident of the city for nearly two scores of years. Bill Fielding is dead. On Tuesday morning at 2 o’clock, after two months of indescribable suffering with dropsical trouble, the malady reached his heart. It was but a touch--and then came death. Kind hands lifted the laboring soul as high as Heaven.
William R. Fielding was born at Zanesville, Ohio, 56 years ago. He was married and was the father of two boys--Clarence and Addie, aged respectively 19 and 10 years. His wife survives him. He died at the residence of J. A. Coleman on Tuesday morning as above indicated and was taken on the same day to Zanesville for burial

Kokomo Indiana newspaper
July 15, 1886


Name: FORNEY, Alfred S.

Date of Notice: 20 April 1915

Alfred S. Forney, a former resident of this city (Zanesville, Ohio died Monday morning in Charleston, W. Va., where he made his home for a number of years.
The body will arrive here at 7:10 o'clock Tuesday morning and will be taken to the home of Mrs. John Clifford, 922 Pine street.
The Times Recorder, Zanesville, Ohio
Tuesday April 20, 1915


Name: HICKS, Turner J.
Date of Notice: Aug 20 1940
Source: Source unknown; Cleveland Necrology File, Reel #037.
Notes: Hicks: Turner J., age 85 years, husband of Nancy Hicks, brother of Albert of Xenia, O., and a number of nephews and nieces in this state; at his residence, 4807 Cedar Ave. Monday, Aug. 19. Funeral service at St. James A. M. E. Church, Thursday, Aug. 22, at 1 p. m., conducted by Rev Comez. Interment Evergreen Memorial Park. E. F. Boyd & Son funeral director.


Name: HOGAN, Linwood H.
Date of Notice: May 1 1946
Source: Source unknown; Cleveland Necrology File, Reel #038.
Notes: Hogan: Linwood H., 7020 Cedar Ave., beloved husband of Emma E., father of Leslie R., brother of Mrs. Brooks C. Jackson, Mrs. Will Colston of Zanesville, suddenly Sunday 2:45 p. m. Services Wednesday at 2 p. m., Antioch Baptist Church, E. 89th and Cedar Ave. Angelus Funeral Home in charge. Remains may be viewed at church. 11 a. m. until 2 p. m.

Name: JACKSON, Ida May

Date of Notice: Not Given

Mrs. Ida May Jackson, mother of Common Please Judge Perry B. Jackson, died yesterday morning at Highland View Hospital. She was 85. Mrs. Jackson was the wife of the late Brooks C. Jackson. She came to Cleveland in 1923 from Zanesville, O., where she was born. She had been living with a daughter. Mrs. Thelma E Estell, at 942 Herrick Road N.E. She is also survived by another son, Rolland E., two other daughters, Mrs. Doris L. Grant and Mrs. Mildred Nelson, 11 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Services will be at Mt. Pleasant Methodist Church, 12702 Abell Avenue S.E., at 1 p.m. Wednesday. In charge of arrangements is the E. F. Boyd & Son funeral home, 2169 E. 89th Street.

Name: JOHNSON, Prudence aka FISHER, Prudy

Date of Notice: 13 May 1890

Prudence Johnson, who was found dead in her bed at her home on N. Sixth street, last Saturday was the oldest native born colored person in Zanesville. She was born in a little log cabin on what is now known as River street in March, 1806.
Her parents were the servants of John McIntire, the founder of this city. The only surviving member of her family is her brother, Samuel. She and her brother Silas were reared in John McIntire's family and remained with Mrs. McIntire after the death of her husband and for several years after her marriage to Rev. David Young. In her youth Prudy was a great favorite with the young people of the city. As she grew older she became an indispensable adjunct on all sociable occasions. No wedding dinner could take place unless she had charge of the arrangements. In the sick chamber, she was indispensable. For many years she was the nurse of the town.

Later on she accepted a position with General and Mrs. Robert S. Granger of this city. The General at that time was a Captain in the Regular Army stationed at Fort Snelling, near the present site of St. Paul, Minnesota. She lived with the General's family for a number of years accompanying them to St. Peters and also to Newport barracks and to Texas, remaining in this family some fourteen years. For a number of years she was engaged on several of the Zanesville and Pittsburg, and Zanesville and Marietta and Parkersburg line of passenger steamers as chamber-maid.

For seventeen years she was with Captain Lou Myrick of the steamer "Lizzie Cassell." She was of an economical turn and saved from her earnings a comfortable competency.
The funeral services were held at 2:30 o'clock at the African M. E. church, South street. Every seat in this large church was occupied. After the usual church services Rev. Mr. Gee, a former pastor of Zion Baptist church of this city, but now pastor of the A. M. E. church at Cambridge, a warm friend of the deceased, paid a most beautiful and touching tribute to the life and character of the deceased. From the church the remains were followed by a large number of friends to Greenwood Cemetery where interment was made.

Zanesville Daily Signal, published: Zanesville, Ohio
Tuesday May 13, 1890

Note: Also known as Prudy Fisher as she was married and divorced from William Fisher.


Name: Major Margaret E. Barnes JONES

Date of Notice: 25 April 2000

Maj. Margaret E. B. Jones Dies Maj. Margaret E. B. Jones Dies Served in Black WWII Unit
Margaret E. Barnes Jones, 89, a retired Army major who served with the only battalion of African American military women sent overseas during World War II, died of congestive heart failure April 11 at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. She had lived in Alexandria since 1980.

Maj. Jones was one of 32 officers who accompanied more than 800 enlisted women to Scotland early in 1945 to work as a special wartime postal unit.
The 6888th Central Postal Directory had been formed after pressure from civil rights organizations and black newspapers forced the military to use African American women in meaningful Army jobs. The battalion's initial mission was to redirect mail addressed to killed or missing military personnel after the D-Day assault in France, which had scattered soldiers across the country.

Maj. Jones was the public relations officer for the battalion, which worked round-the-clock to clear a backlog of Christmas mail. The operation had been run by enlisted men and civilians, and it was in chaos, Army historians later recalled. A warehouse was filled with 3 million parcels alone; packages of spoiled cakes and cookies filled still another room patrolled by rats that were said to be as large as cats. Working round-the-clock, and averaging 65,000 pieces of mail a shift, the women managed to clean the place out in three months.
Assigned to a former school in Birmingham, England, and later to posts in France, the battalion was responsible for redirecting mail to more than 7 million people. Mail from home was considered vital to wartime morale, and the 6888th, which kept cards tracking each person being served, broke records for its distribution.

Maj. Jones, a native of Oberlin, Ohio, [and 1929 graduate of Oberlin High School] was among the first African American women commissioned as officers in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps. She had studied for three years at Howard University, where she later received a bachelor's degree and where her brother, Sam Barnes, was later athletic director. Sam Barnes was one of the so-called Golden 13, the first black officers commissioned in the Navy.

Federal policy during World War II was to limit participation by African Americans in the armed forces to 10 percent. When 400 women were accepted as officer candidates for the WAACS, the 40 African American women among them came to be known as "10 percenters." The military and its facilities remained segregated, for both enlisted personnel and officers, until President Harry S. Truman issued a desegregation order in 1949. African American women in training were similar in most respects to the white trainees, according to publications of the Army Center of Military History: Nearly 80 percent had attended college, and most had worked as teachers and office workers. In all, 6,520 black women served in the Army in World War II.

Maj. Jones's first post as an officer was as executive officer of a company of African American women in Kentucky. The company was assigned to clean floors and latrines in the Fort Breckinridge hospital and to work in the post laundry. It was there that she began working to secure better assignments for the women under her command. A book about the 6888th, "To Serve My Country, To Serve My Race," by Brenda L. Moore, describes similar efforts of battalion members to overcome racism and sexism to serve their country during World War II. African American women had served as nurses in previous wars, but World War II marked the first time they joined the rank-and-file service. After the war, and her graduation from Howard, Maj. Jones did graduate work in American history at the University of Minnesota. She was recalled to active duty in 1949, and placed in command of a training company at Fort Lee in Virginia. Later posts included tours doing administrative work at the engineering school at Fort Belvoir, an overseas assignment in France and as a special services officer in Kansas. She retired as chief of administration at Maison Fort in France and later accompanied her husband to a post in Germany, where she was president of an officers' wives club.
Her military honors included the Army Commendation Medal. She also received awards from the World War II Commemoration Committee, the Congressional Black Caucus, the Armed Forces Hostess Association and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

She was a volunteer with the NAACP, the Urban League, the African American Women's Club, Women in Service for America Memorial Committee, Black Women United for Action, the Armed Forces Officers Wives Club of Washington, Alfred Street Baptist Church in Alexandria and the Circle Club of the Kennedy Center.


Survivors include her husband, retired Army Maj. Everett Jones of Alexandria.

Washington Post, Washington, D.C., Tuesday, April 25, 2000, p. B7.

Name: MARCERE, Norma
Date of Notice: d. Sunday, August 22, 2004

Undaunted when spurned in her bid for a teaching job in Canton City Schools, Norma Snipes Marcere carved out a unique education career that spanned half a century and touched hundreds of inner-city children struggling to learn.

Marcere died Friday of natural causes at St. Joseph’s Care Center near Louisville, Ohio. She was 95.

“A fantastic lady,” recalled John Garner, who helped Marcere run PAX — the Project for Academic Excellence — which she had established in 1979. The Saturday school for underachieving, mostly black, inner-city elementary students grew from a $35,000 Stark County Foundation grant into one of the county’s most recognized education enrichment programs. It was a model for similar programs, such as STRIVE (Study, think, Read, Investigate, Volunteer and Excel), a program for older students that touched on social issues and personal responsibility.

“She put her whole heart and soul into education, trying to help children to learn,” said Garner. “She never got tired; seven days a week she would help them. She just kept going, even to the past couple years.”

Marcere directed PAX until 2001; it ended two years ago.

The direction of Marcere’s career was set, unwittingly, by former Canton City Schools Superintendent Jesse Mason, she maintained. After her graduation from the Kent State Normal School for teachers in 1929, she applied immediately to teach in her hometown. On the day of her interview, she recalled in her memoirs, she presented herself and her credentials to Mason, only to hear him say he would never hire a “colored” teacher while superintendent.

She took teaching and school psychology positions in Massillon (where she was that city’s first black teacher) and Akron, but never taught in Canton until she established her own programs. Her life filled two autobiographies (“Round the Dining Room Table” and “The Fences Between”) and inspired a play by the local Rainbow Repertory Co. It also inspired hundreds of youngsters, including Ceciliarose Evans, who was involved with the PAX program for a decade.

Marcere was named Junior League Woman of the Year in 1973, and received many other awards and honors for her work in education. She was married for 42 years to Percy Marcere, who died in 1971. She is survived by two children, Norma J. Snow of North Canton and Alluren (Barbara) Marcere of East Hartford, Conn.

She will be buried in St. Peter’s Cemetery on Tuesday following a service at 10 a.m. at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in North Canton. Calling hours are 4-8 p.m. Monday at Wackerly Funeral Home.

Name: PEACOCK, Thelma Green

Date of Notice: 25 July 2003

Thelma Green Peacock, 92, of Palatka, entered the sunset of life on Friday, July 25, 2003 at Orange Park Medical Center following an extended illness.
She was the daughter of Roy C. and Lavinia (Bolden) Williams and was the eldest of six children. She was born April 7, 1911 at Zanesville, Ohio.Three of her siblings (George Edward, Kenneth and Dorothy) preceded her in eternity. In the 1920s, her family moved to Chicago and later moved to Cassopolis, Mich. While residing in Chicago, she attended and graduated from the Madame C.J. Walker Beauty College. In Cassopolis, she owned and operated a beauty salon.

She was married to James Green and upon retirement, they relocated to Putnam County. Following James' demise, she married Deacon Almond Peacock, who also preceded her in eternal rest. She was a former member of Greater Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church and served faithfully at Mt. Tabor First Baptist Church until declining health precluded her.
To cherish her memories and rejoice in her transition and celebrate her homegoing are two sisters: Virginia Mae Thomas and Grace Parham, both of Chicago, Ill.; a host of nieces and nephews, including: Elaine (Melvin) Russell and Sylvia Broady; and nephews; special friends: Deacon Alonza "Al" Scott and wife, Betty Scott, Palatka; and numerous other relatives and friends.

Visitation of friends will be from 6-8 p.m. Sunday, August 3 and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Aug. 4 at the "Chapel of Serenity." Homegoing services will be at 3 p.m. Monday at Mt. Tabor First Baptist Church with the Rev. Karl N. Flagg, pastor, as the eulogist. Interment will be in Palatka Memorial Gardens. Arrangements are entrusted to the care of Flagg-Serenity Memorial Chapel.

Palatka Daily News, Palatka Florida


Name: TATE, Bertha Thornton

Date of Notice: 7 May 1947

Mrs. Bertha Thornton Tate, 82, died at her home 905 West Muskingum avenue at 10:15 p.m. Thursday following an illness of four weeks. She was born in Rockford, Ill., and had lived in Zanesville for the past 50 years. She was a member of the West End Wesleyan Methodist church, the church missionary society, the study club, the Mother's Club, St. Paul's Missionary society and was secretary of the church Sunday school.

She is survived by three sisters, Mrs. Alice Cuffee of the home; Mrs. Oscar (Jessie) DePriest and Mrs. William Jackson, both of Chicago and a niece and nephew of Chicago. Her husband Thornton M. Tate, died in 1939.

The body was removed to the Baker Funeral home and will be removed to the residence Sunday morning.
(Rev. Ralph Tate performed the funeral)
Buried: Greenwood cemetery, Zanesville, Ohio

The Zanesville News, published: Zanesville, Ohio
May 7, 1947


Name: TURNER, Owen

Date of Notice: 18 January 1917

Owen Turner, colored, aged 63, died at his home on Harrison street at 3 o'clock Wednesday morning after a lingering illness from a complication of diseases. He was a member of the colored Odd Fellows lodge. No near relatives survive.

Funeral services will be conducted at Mader's chapel, South Fourth street, at 2 o'clock Friday afternoon under the auspices of the Odd Fellows. Burial in Greenwood.

The Times Recorder, published: Zanesville, Ohio
January 18, 1917


Name: WEBSTER, Ina
Date of Notice: 8 January 1960
Source: Plain Dealer; Cleveland Necrology File, Reel #165.
Notes: Webster, Ina, of 1005 East Blvd.; beloved wife of Dr. F. D. Webster, mother of Mary Boyd; grandmother of William, Marina and Marcella; sister of Clarence Guy of Zanesville, O., and Mayme Pritchard of Los Angeles, Calif.; aunt; passed on to her rest. Funeral services will be held Saturday, Jan. 9 at 2:30 p. m. at Mt. Zion Congregational Church. Friends may call at the E. F. Boyd and Son Funeral Home, 2165 E. 89th


Name: WEST, Elizabeth

Date of Notice: 11 January 1937

Elizabeth West, 77, one of the most highly respected colored woman in this community passed away about 3:30 Saturday afternoon after a long illness from diabetes. Her maiden name was Elizabeth Bell and she was born in Virginia but came to Ohio when she was a small child. She was united in marriage to George W. West, who passed away about 25 years ago. To this union eleven children were born, five of whom preceded her in death, the seven living are Mrs. Mary Smith, Smithfield, Clarence, Cadiz, Alfred, Houston, Pa., Archie, residence unknown, Emory, Chandler, Ohio, and Thelma and Mrs. Georgia Johnson of the home. She was a faithful member of the St. James A. M. E. church and all of its auxiliaries being a Charter Member of the Stewardess Board. Funeral services will be held from the church Tuesday afternoon at 2 p.m. conducted by the pastor and interment will be made in the Cadiz Cemetery.

The Times Recorder, Zanesville, Ohio
January 12, 1937