April 7, 2018

Pages 3576-3577
Whole Number 149

SPARKS HOUSEHOLDS APPEARING ON
THE 1830 CENSUS OF LOUISIANA



The record of Sparkses appearing on the 1840 census of Louisiana was published in the Quarterly of September 1977, Whole No. 99, p. 1930; that for 1850 appeared in the issue of September 1985, Whole No. 131, pp. 2793-96.

Louisiana became the 18th state to enter the Union in 1812. From 1805 until 1812 it had held territorial status, it having been part of the Louisiana Purchase made by the United States in 1803. The governmental subdivisions of the state are called parishes rather than counties, but, except for their name, they function as do counties in other states. The first U.S. census of Louisiana was taken in 1810, but no one named Sparks appeared on either that census nor the one for 1820. As seen below, when the 1830 census was taken, however, there were two households enumerated that were headed by men named Sparks.

The "Wm. A. Sparks" shown in Assumption Parish on the 1830 census was surely intended for William H. Sparks (1800 -1882) whose biography appeared in the Quarterly of December 1981, Whole No. 116. He was a son of Thomas and Achsah (Love) Sparks and was a first cousin once removed of the Daniel Sparks shown in St. Mary Parish on the same census. The father of William H. Sparks, Thomas Sparks, was born between 1770 and 1775; he was a son of Charles Sparks (b. ca.1743-44, died 1797) of South Carolina. Charles Sparks had a brother named Daniel Sparks (1740-1810), they being sons of James Sparks, Jr. who had been born in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, ca. 1700. James Sparks, Sr. was born ca. 1670. Our earliest record of him is found in a deed dated December 25, 1723, in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, by which he obtained a 99-year lease on 200 acres of land in Spotsylvania County. In this and subsequent land records, he was called a "planter," a term used in the southern colonies for a landowner who personally managed his plantation. His wife's name was Jane. James Sparks, Sr. spent all of his adult life in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, dying there in 1736.

James Sparks, Jr., believed to have been the oldest son of James, Sr., was born ca. 1700; he moved to the Pee Dee River area in South Carolina as a young man. His son, Daniel, was the father of Daniel Pierce Sparks (1784-1867) discussed below. (See the Quarterly of December 1962, Whole No. 40, for a lengthy article on this branch of the Sparks family.)

William H. Sparks married a wealthy widow named Mariah (Green) Carmichael, daughter of Abner Green, in October 1827. In April 1830, William H. Sparks and his younger brothers, David Sparks (died 1831) and Robertus Sparks (born ca.1809), purchased a sugar plantation containing some 780 acres on Bayou Lafourche in Assumption Parish, Louisiana. In the enumeration of the household in 1830, they were the two males shown in the column for those aged 20 to 30. William H. Sparks was the male enumerated as between 40 and 50, although he was actually only 30 years old and was placed in the wrong column. This sort of error was often made by census takers.

Daniel Sparks shown on the 1830 census of St. Mary Parish was Daniel Pierce Sparks (1784-1867), son of Daniel and Martha (Pearce) Sparks. Apparently he preferred the "Pierce" spelling. The elder Daniel Sparks (1740 -1810) was a son of James Sparks, Jr. who had been born in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, but, who, as noted above, moved to South Carolina as a young man and lived in the Welch Neck area of Marlboro County. His son, Daniel Pierce Sparks, moved to Savanah, Georgia, as a young man where he enlisted to serve in the War of 1812. It was after his discharge that he settled in St. Mary Parish, Louisiana, and be came a sugar cane planter. He was married in Franklin Parish, Louisiana, in 1818 to Constance Etier. Perhaps he was living within her family's household in 1820 and for that reason did not appear as heading his own household on the census of that year. A record of his life and family can be found in the Quarterly of December 1962, Whole No. 40, p. 695.

William H. Sparks was shown as owning a total of 35 slaves on the 1830 census, 17 males and 18 females. Daniel P. Sparks was shown as owning 17 slaves, 12 males and 5 females.

  Males  Females 
 . 0
5
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100
 ||| 0
5
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100
Assumption Parish                             |||                          
 Wm. A. Sparks (p101)  1        2    1              |||  1        1                
                             |||                          
St. Mary Parish                             |||                          
 Daniel Sparks (p.141)          2    1              |||      1      1              

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