Katheryne Boone Hamilton the descendant of a free black man who served for the Confederacy in the Civil War said, “There are some naysayers that say it never happened. I tell people, ‘You don’t have to believe me. Just let this be a catalyst for you to do your own research.’ I don’t try to force it on anyone, but I simply suggest to do your own research.”

Her great-grandfather, Jason Boone, was born and raised in the Skeetertown area of the old Nansemond County, the descendant of Joe Skeeter, for whom the area had been named. Hamilton, a Holland-area native and retired nurse, discovered her ancestor’s history of service in the late ‘90s, when her sister “got bit by the genealogy research bug.” They found that Jason Boone and his brother, Anthony, both served for the Confederacy.

“Jason Boone was a member of a community of freeborn blacks that had been in existence for over 150 years,” Hamilton said, speaking of what she believes was her ancestor’s motive for fighting for the Confederacy. “He had a lot at stake. I’m sure he thought about what was going to happen to Skeetertown. (When he saw others going to war), he felt like he was obligated to march off as well. He had a home to protect as well as they did.”

Both brothers survived the war and lived to be old men. Jason Boone fathered 30 children in two different marriages.

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