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

Thornton, James and Adeline Joyner

Mimi Lozano is the author of Black Latino Connection; it includes the history of the family of Kentucky native James Thorton (1835-1911) and his wife Adeline (1852-1940) Thornton.

James was born enslaved in Versailles, KY, gaining his freedom when he joined the Union Army in 1864. He and other African American soldiers were sentenced for an attempted mutiny; James received hard labor off the coast of Florida and was dishonorably discharged in 1866.

James Thornton and his sons moved to Kerr County, TX, where James married Adeline in 1871; she had been enslaved in Florida. They would become the first African American landowners in Kerr County. Together they had 13 children, some of whom migrated to Canada; their son David migrated to Guadalajara, Mexico in 1901.

For more see the Black Latino Connection website at and contact Mimi Lozano.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Woodford County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Versailles, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Item Relations

Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Black Latino Connection

Related Entries Citing this Entry


Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Thornton, James and Adeline Joyner,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed April 15, 2024,

Last modified: 2023-07-24 16:46:20