Information concerning descendants  of James H Yancey

some of this compiled by Ruth V. Benjamin

See the Family Chart.

[Ruth Benjamin] From email of 5/98 - I received your email today regarding your research on Yanceys of "African American" descent. I am so happy that you have taken on that task. I try to get information from my family. I think they just like to get stuff from me but they don't send me any. So again I am grateful for your hard work. I will send you as much as possible; but most of what I know I have already given you. I don't think I have shared some names of relatives of my grandfather but when I actually respond to your email regarding what you will have on the WEB page I'll do that then. However, there are two names you have listed already on "notable" Yanceys of african american descent. They are Charles Calvin Yancey - Boston Councilman and Irving Victor Yancey. Charles is my first cousin and Victor (as we call him) is our uncle. Charles' father -- Howell Theordore Yancey Sr. is older brother to Irving Victor. Howell and Victor are sons of Frederick Howell Yancey, Sr and Anna Coral Bosfield Yancey. Fred being born in Boston or Cambridge, MA and Anna Coral being born in Nassau, Bahamas. Her mother and maybe her father were Arawac Indians. There names were Elizabeth Ann Ramsey-Bosfield and Samuel Bosfield Sr. I'll know my cousin Ronnie (Charles' brother) has equipment to send photos. I'll get together with him over the summer and see if we can send you some photos from our family.

From a Family Newsletter: Building a Family - The whereabouts of many Yanceys is a mystery soon to be shattered, hopefully. The objective of this Newsletter is to find, identify and highlight the various branches from the union of James Yancey and Olivia Hannah. Everyone seems to have a piece from here, a bit from there; no one seems to be sure how they all fit together.


Early History

Sarah Olivia Hannah , known to have come from Nova Scotia, Canada , married James Yancey who we think was born in Cambridge, MA; or he may even have been from Nova Scotia originally. James was a (merchant) seaman; and married Sarah when she was very very young. Together they had six children, five sons and one daughter; they lived in Cambridge, MA and Boston. It is known that after the birth of the daughter, Sarah Olivia died; the children were separated and raised in foster homes. Fred and maybe some of the others were raised by a Mrs. Thompson. The baby girl was adopted/raised by another family.

information on James Yancey from

James H. Yancey


 Personal Information
     Place of Birth - New York New York
     Age - 16      Complexion - Mulatto
     Occupation -
     Height - 5'0"


 Naval Service
     Place of Enlistment - New York
     Date of Enlistment - August 26, 1863
     Term of Enlistment - 1
     Rating - 1st Class Boy


 Detailed Muster Records






September 30, 1863


New Berne


The Offspring

One of the sons was CHARLES -  later in life became handicapped and was confined to a wheelchair. He had five daughters: Marie Yancey Garland, who had a daughter named Dorothy; and Vera Yancey Robinson who had four children. Their names are Lloyd, Gloria, Thelma (Cookie) Robinson-Varris and Vernon; all of whom have children and some of them have children. Myrtle Yancey, who married a Mr. Mitchell had one son who had one son; Thelma, who married Neil Halliday, had a son, Neil Jr., and daughter, Toni; and Sadie Yancey who was the Dean of Women at Howard University in Washington, DC for several years; and who never married or had children.

Sisters Vera, Thelma, Sadie and Myrtle Yancey (top), and  below their father Charles H Yancey and  his second  wife Minnie C. Jackson
Photos thanks to Toni H Schooler and Sheryll Varris - descendants

See information about Sadie Yancey

Information about the Jackson Family

More Photos


Vera Yancey, grandmother Martha Diggs, mother Elnora "Ella" Henderson

Vera L. Yancey

Vera Yancey Robinson & mother Elnora Henderson

Family Photo

Information on children of Chester P. [Chet] Yancey

from  "This is Your Heritage"
By Mabe "Doc" Kountze

Ana Coral



Another one of the six was WALTER who had two sons: Thomas (Tommy) and Walter Frederick. Tommy had one son and Walter had three children: Muriel Yancey Armistead, Warren Frederick and Edna Yancey Burns. Muriel has three children: Gary Phillip Langford, Norma Ridgely and Janette B. Langford-Sutherland. Warren Frederick Yancey had a daughter: Sandra Yancey Johnson who has four sons and Edna Yancey Burns had six children.

Next there was JAMES who had two children, Chester and Beatrice. James was a painter and a barber in West Medford, MA. As far as is known Chester had a son, Leonard and a daughter named Coral Yancey-Alexander. Coral had three children, Hampton, Celeste and (we’ll find out later the other ones name).

The Last Three

The fourth of child of "Sadie" and Jim was Percy. As the story goes  he was shot one July 4th during the celebration. Memories fade and stories change, he may have died by playing Russian roulette. His age at the time of death is not known.

Then Frederick Howell was born. He was the youngest son of Olivia and James. Fred had eight children: Fred Jr., Elizabeth Olivia, Howell Theodore, Raymond Ernest, Stanley, James, Irving Victor and Edith Coralie. The sixth and last child of Olivia and James was Sarah (known to Fred’s children as Aunt Sadie). It was at Sarah’s birth that Olivia died (at approximately age 26). Sarah Yancey had one child whose name was Ruby. Ruby had two children a boy and a girl. Their last known whereabouts was the New York City area per Edith Yancey-Wright.


Frederick Howell Yancey

Olivia Benjamin

Stanley A. Yancey

Howell Theodore

James Yancey

Irving Victor Yancey

Raymond Ernest Yancey





Other links:

Charles Calvin Yancey

Frederick Howell Yancey

Linda Yancey

Alice W. Yancey