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

Hamilton, Richard Bertram

(born: 1874  -  died: 1919) 

Richard Bertram Hamilton was one of the early African American dentist in Danville, KY, and one of the earliest African American, college-trained dentists in Kentucky. He was an 1898 graduate from the University of Michigan College of Dental Surgery (now University of Michigan School of Dentistry). In 1918, his dental office was located at 122 E. Main Street in Danville, KY, according to his WWI Draft Registration Card (Ancestry). Richard B. Hamilton had been a practicing dentist in Danville since at least 1900 when he was listed in the U.S. Census. He was single and he was a lodger at the home of William Perkins on Main Street in Danville. On April 16, 1902, Richard B. Hamilton married Ophelia Catherine Tibbs (1881-1907), the couple was married for 5 years. On Ophelia Hamilton's tombstone in the Hilldale Cemetery is their daughter's name "Mary Esther Hamilton," there is not a birth or death date for the child. After Ophelia's death, Richard B. Hamilton continued living on Walnut Street with his mother-in-law, Mary R. Tibbs (1844-1910).  

Sources: University of Michigan Catalogue of Graduates, Non-Graduates, Officers, and Members of the Faculties, 1837-1921, p.661 (Ancestry); 1900 U.S. Census; "Boyle County Kentucky Declarations of Marriage", a .pdf document at RootsWeb; Ophelia Tibbs Hamilton at Find A Grave; "Ophelia Hamilton" in the Kentucky Advocate, 03/04/1907, p.3; and 1910 U.S. Census]

Richard B. Hamilton served as secretary of the Danville Colored Fair that is listed in the July 4, 1908 issue of The Billboard on p.46. The fair was held August 19-21, 1908. Richard B. Hamilton would marry a second time on May 16, 1911 in Danville, KY. His wife was Leota Linne Nichols who was a graduate of Wayman Institute and Wilberforce University. She was the daughter of Rev. Pleasant A. Nichols and Dovie Candaea Haddox. Leota Hamilton is listed on Richard B. Hamilton's WWI Draft Card, signed September 12, 1918. The couple lived in Danville, KY, at 127 E. Walnut Street. Richard B. Hamilton was sick; he had tuberculosis and appendicitis. During the latter months of 1918 he returned to his hometown of Lima, OH, where he died on January 10, 1919. Later that year, on November 10, 1919, his widow, Leota N. Hamilton, married Harry M. Lackey in Wayne County, IN.

Richard Bertram Hamilton was buried in the Woodlawn Cemetery in Lima, OH. He was the son of Levi J. Hamilton and Esther Howard Hamilton, both of whom were from West Virginia.

Sources: Centennial Encyclopedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, v.I, pp.171-172; Indiana Marriages (Ancestry); and Indiana Death Certificate File No.84, Registered No. 24 (available at FamilySearch).

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Boyle County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Danville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Outside Kentucky Place Name


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Entry: Wayman Institute
NKAA Entry: Kentucky Colored Fairs
NKAA Entry: Nichols, Pleasant A.
NKAA Source: Ancestry (online)
NKAA Source: Catalogue of graduates, non-graduates, officers, and members of the faculties [of the] University of Michigan :
NKAA Source: Billboard (periodical)
NKAA Source: Centennial encyclopaedia of the African Methodist Episcopal Church
NKAA Source:
NKAA Source: Kentucky advocate (newspaper)

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Hamilton, Richard Bertram,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed November 26, 2022,

Last modified: 2022-08-10 20:47:07