Robert Sallee James (1818 - 1850)

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Birthplace: BigWhipwill Crk, Logan, Kentucky, USA
Death: Died in Placerville, El Dorado, California, USA
Occupation: Hemp Farmer/Baptist Minister
Managed by: Michael Waddell
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About Robert Sallee James

Robert Sallee James was born in Logan County, Kentucky. He was the son of John M. James and Mary G. Poor James. His ancestor John James came to America from Pembrokeshire, Wales in the mid-17th century. He married Zeralda Cole on 28 December 1841. His children were Alexander Franklin, Robert, Jesse and Susan Lavenia.

James was a noted revivalist. Probate records show that at his death he owned six slaves and was a commercial hemp farmer. He was among the founders of William Jewell College in 1849. In April 1850, James left his family for California to prospect for gold and preach to the crowds of goldminers during the California gold rush. Shortly after arriving in California in August 1850, he contracted cholera and died on August 18, 1850, in the Hangtown Gold Camp, later known as Placerville. He was buried there in an unmarked grave.

James's death left his family saddled with debts and many of his possessions, including one of the slaves, were auctioned off to pay them. His widow Zerelda married Benjamin Simms, a wealthy farmer, on September 30, 1852.

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Rev. Robert Sallee James's Timeline

July 7, 1818
BigWhipwill Crk, Logan, Kentucky, USA
July 7, 1818
Age 1
Russellville, Logan, Kentucky, United States
December 28, 1841
Age 23
Scott, KY, USA
January 10, 1843
Age 24
Kearney, Clay County, MO, United States
July, 1844
Age 25
MO, United States
July 19, 1845
Age 27
Clay County, MO, United States
September 5, 1847
Age 29
Kearney, Clay, Missouri, USA
November 25, 1849
Age 31
Clay, Missouri, United States
August 18, 1850
Age 32
Placerville, El Dorado, California, USA