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

Gordon, Mary Ann Goodlow

(born: 1853  -  died: 1924) 

Mary Ann Goodlow was born on the Poindexter Plantation in Bourbon County, KY during slavery. As a free person, she and her husband, John Francis Gordon, eventually settled in White Sulphur Springs, MT, the only African American family in the town.

John Gordon died in a train wreck around 1895 while on his way to work in the gold fields in Alaska, shortly before their sixth and last child was born. That child, [Emmanuel] Taylor Gordon (1893-1971), would become a well-known Negro spiritual singer. Taylor Gordon began his career in vaudeville and later performed with J. Rosamond Johnson in the 1920s and 1930s.

For more information see Born to Be, by T. Gordon; and the Emmanuel Taylor Gordon Papers at the Montana Historical Society Research Center.

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Read about Bourbon County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

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NKAA Source: Born to be

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“Gordon, Mary Ann Goodlow,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed April 13, 2024,

Last modified: 2021-12-01 19:24:16