The 2010 U.S. Census recorded 16,680 black Americans with Boone as their last name. That represented 31% of the total of 53,792 entries.
This article tracks their numbers in the census since the Civil War. We also look at historic African American people named Boone.
We end with a review of early records of black military service in the United States.
After The Civil War
The 1870 census was the first survey after the Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation. In 1850 and 1860, only free African Americans were recorded in the census. The many enslaved were omitted.
From 1870 onward, all black Americans were included.
708 people named Boone were recorded in the 1870 census as black and 152 as mixed.
There was a total of 3,581 people with the name.
Boone In The 1900 And 1940 Census
The mixed category was dropped from the census in 1900, so we just need to look at the black numbers this time.
The 1900 census recorded 2,734 people with the last name Boone as black within a total of 10,358 that year.
By the way, the mixed category returned in the 1910 and 1920 censuses. It was dropped again in 1930, but replaced with extra categories for colored and non-white in a way that seems confusing now.
This changed again in 1940 and we can simply focus on one black category.
The 1940 census recorded 5,617 people named Boone as black within a total of 25,930.
Historic Black Figures With The Boone Surname
Here is a notable African American in history with Boone as their last name.
- Born: 1832
- From: Craven County, North Carolina
- Died: 1904
Sarah Marshall was born enslaved in Craven County. She was freed when she married James Boone, a free black man. They moved to New Haven, Connecticut, and raised eight children.
Sarah Boone worked as a dressmaker. She would have ironed thousands of ladies’ garments in her life. She set out to tackle the problem of pressing sleeves without having creases. She devised an improvement to the design of ironing boards.
Boone’s invention was a narrow curved board which was a better fit for the sleeves of garments of that era. She obtained a parent in 1892 for her design. That makes her one of the first African American women to gain a patent.
I’ve highlighted her signature in the picture below:
Here are some other early black female inventors:
Boone In Black Military Records
Military records are a rich resource of information for family history research. Here are examples of the Boone surname from military service.
Five regiments for black soldiers were formed during the Civil War. They were known as the Buffalo Soldiers.
Their records are part of the national archive of military monthly returns. The information includes the year and place of birth, where they enlisted, their occupation, and their height.
One of the earliest military entries for Boone was in September 1868. Irwin Boone was a Private in the U.S. Tenth Cavalry. He was stationed in September 1868 at Fort Dodge, Texas.
Another entry was in December 1916. Abbott Boone was a 1st Lieutenant in the U.S. Ninth Cavalry.
You have to create an account on either website, but you do not need to pay for the Buffalo Soldiers archive.
Black Civil War Sailors
The National Parks Service has a free archive of African American sailors during the Civil War.
The information includes their age, height, rank, occupation, and where and when they enlisted. It also includes every ship that they served on.
You can search the database on the National Parks website.
One of the earliest entries for Boone was for Isaac Boone from New York City. He enlisted in August 1863 at New York when he was aged 17.
The record shows that Isaac was assigned on February 1864 to the ship Grand Gulf.
His occupation before enlisting was as a Waiter. His naval rank was 1st Class Boy.
“1st Class Boy” was a rank generally given to seamen in training, who performed various manual tasks and duties aboard a ship under supervision. This could prepare them for promotion to the rank of ordinary seaman.
One of the later entries was for a sailor who enlisted at New York in July 1864. Horace was aged 18 and was from New York City.
He was assigned to the ship Potomac on July 1865.
His occupation before enlisting was as a Laborer/Farmer. His naval rank was Landsman.
“Landsman” was the lowest rank at the time and was given to recruits with little sea experience.