I think the key to understanding Cornelia's escape is to find out as much as I can about her mother (my great, great, great grandmother), Dianna Williams Crawford.
Here are some major questions I've been asking myself the last couple of weeks:
- Was Diana a free black or a slave? Did John Newland Maffitt kidnap her (and Cornelia) and take them to Wilmington?
- Who fathered Cornelia?
- Was the Diana named in Caroline Olivia Ball's will my great-great-great grandmother? If so, who owned her after Caroline's death?
- Is Diana at all related to the Ball family?
Sometimes I think I've figured out the puzzle, only to hit a dead end. I must answer at least one of these questions so I can formulate the scene of Cornelia escaping the South.