From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

McCoy, George and Mildred

George and his wife Mildred Goins McCoy were escaped slaves from Louisville, KY. They settled first in Canada, then in 1852 moved with their 12 children to Ypsilanti, MI, six miles east of Ann Arbor and 29 miles west of Detroit. Ypsilanti was a significant link in the Underground Railroad and a major stop for slaves fleeing from Kentucky en route to Detroit and Canada.

George was a conductor who aided many of the escapees by hiding them under the boxes of cigars that he delivered to Detroit. As George's cigar business thrived, more slaves were carried to freedom, so many that a second wagon was purchased and driven by his son William.

George and Mildred McCoy are the parents of inventor Elijah McCoy.

For more see M. Chandler, "Ypsilanti's rich in Black history," Detroit Free Press, 2/09/1984, p. 7A; and Mann, James, "A Look at Ypsilanti's Role in the Underground Railroad," The Ann Arbor News website, March 7, 2010.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Jefferson County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Louisville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Outside Kentucky Place Name

Item Relations

Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Detroit free press (newspaper)

Related Entries Citing this Entry

NKAA Entry: McCoy, Elijah J.
NKAA Entry: Berry, Isaac, Sr.

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“McCoy, George and Mildred,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed April 19, 2024,

Last modified: 2021-07-09 20:37:33