My 2nd great-grandfather Vilmont “Vilmore” Schexnayder
I am a tribal member of the African-American Genealogy and Slave Ancestry Research. The members have been personally challenged to solve at least one ancestor challenge by the Spring of 2014. So the next few months of writing will be about my journey of finding Vilmont Schexnayder’s mother.
My Challenge: To find the unknown mother of Vilmont Schexnayder. The unknown mother was most likely a négresse esclave, possibly living in St. John the Baptist Parish in Louisiana. Her children were slaves. Her son Vilmont Schexnayder was born about 1837. Vilmont and his sister Virginia were the property of George Roussel in 1857 in St. John Parish La.
Ancestor(s): 2nd great-grandfather Vilmont Schexnayder
Others: Norbert Schexnaydre (1818-1880) of St. John Parish is the presumed European father of Vilmore Schexnayder.
Slave owner George Sylvester Roussel Footsteps:
1840 – a 46-year-old George Roussel is living in ST. JOHN Parish. He owns 28 slaves. 3 males under the age of 10 (Vilmont’s age range), 5 females of ages between 10-23 , 5 females between 24-35, 1 female between 36-54 (Unknown mother’s age ranges)
1850 – George Roussel is living in ST. JOHN Parish on a Wood yard. His real estate valued at $14,000. He owns 27 slaves. 2 males between 15-16 (Possible Vilmont’s age range) One female 27, one female 36, and one female 60.
1858 – George Roussel dies.
1859 Partition of settlement of the estate of George Roussel.
There was 22 human property to be disburse to family members:
~ Demophen Roussel received William 37 years , Francois 35, Rosimon 14
~ Louis Amedee Roussel received Aimes 50, Louis 24, Vilmont 23, Jean Pierre 70, Robert 12, Virginia 20 and her two children, and Betsy 35.
~ Rosilla Roussel Degravelle received Augustine 55,
~ Adele Roussel Cornay received Alfur 9, Aglae 7, Sylvester 3
~ Delphine Roussel Tassin received Dada alias Alexis 63
~ Eliza Roussel received Henriette 37 and her 4 children
If Vilmont’s mother was in this disbursement than she might have been Augustine 55, or Henriette 37.
The surname Schexnayder
~ 1863 During the Civil War, Vilmont Schexnayder left his slave holder Louis Amedee Roussel and enlisted in the United States Colored Troop.
~ According to Civil War pension affidavit, Vilmont enlisted in the U.S.C.T. under the name Belmont Sechnigh. When he enlisted the person that registered him wrote down what he thought he heard was his name. So Vilmont answered to Belmont Sechnigh during his entire enlistment.
~ According to Civil War pension affidavit Louis Amedee Roussel stated that Vilmont’s father was a white man. Vilmont’s mother was not mentioned in the Civil War pension affidavit.
~ In St. John Parish, the Schexnaydre’s families were neighbors of George Roussel. The Roussels and Schexnaydres have intermarried with each other. Consulting a Schexnayder genealogist Jay Schexnaydre, I asked him if he had heard any oral history of any Schexnaydre men that had children with a slave. He told me of one name Norbert Schexnaydre (1818-1880). Researching Norbert, I found that he live very close to George Roussel and had married his niece in 1843. So Norbert was a bachelor during the time Vilmont was conceived. Jay had given me, one of Norbert’s descendants email address to correspond about Norbert. This particular descendant did not agree with Jay’s oral history and did not want to correspond with me.
~ A year later my mother did her DNA testing with 23andme and the first cousin to popped up was a 3rd cousin name Schexnaydre. I called the fellow Schexnayder genealogist and asked him if he had this person in his records and he did, the person is a direct descendant of Norbert Schexnaydre.The next couple of years other Schexnayders and other collateral surnames descendants of St. John Parish popped up as DNA cousins. So the surname is correct and I am 98.% sure that Norbert Schexnaydre is Vilmont’s father.
~ Jay Schexnaydre’s oral history about Norbert had to do with a woman of color Marguerite Young and her sons Antoine Schexnayder born about 1844 and Celestine Schexnayder.
~ If Norbert was still having a relationship with Vilmont’s mother at least 7 years later after Vilmont was conceived than Marguerite could possibly be his mother.