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

Hamilton, Jeff

(born: 1840  -  died: 1941) 

Jeff Hamilton, a slave, was sold to Texas Senator Sam Houston; Hamilton had been placed on the auction block in Huntsville, TX, in 1853.

Hamilton was born on the Singleton Gibson Plantation in the Shelby County, KY community of Jones. The Gibsons moved to Fort Bend, Texas, where Mr. Gibson was killed and his widow, Mary Brown Gibson, married James McKell, who had both gambling and drinking habits. McKell sold Jeff Hamilton to pay a debt.

Hamilton remained with the Houston family even after Sam Houston freed all of his slaves in 1862, becoming Sam Houston's personal servant. After Houston died, Hamilton was employed as a janitor at Baylor Female College [now the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor].

During his lifetime, Hamilton was recognized at historical events because of his close association with the historical figures he had met while serving as Houston's personal servant. After his death, Hamilton was honored with two historical markers, one at his grave in East Belton Cemetery and the other at Mary Hardin-Baylor campus.

Hamilton was the author of My Master: the inside story of Sam Houston and His Time. For more see Jeff Hamilton, by J. C. Davis at The Handbook of Texas Online website; and Exiled: the last days of Sam Houston, by R. Rozelle.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Shelby County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Jones, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Outside Kentucky Place Name


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: My master: the inside story of Sam Houston and his times
NKAA Source: The Handbook of Texas
NKAA Source: Exiled: the last days of Sam Houston

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Hamilton, Jeff,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed January 24, 2022,

Last modified: 2021-03-03 18:33:51