Was the founder and leader of the Lett settlement.
This Lett line comes from Maryland and comes from the union of Samuel Delaney Lett and Jemima Banneker. Their children migrated through Pennsylvania to southeastern Ohio Meigs Twp and thereafter Guernsey, Muskingum, Morgan and Belmont Co. The Lett Settlement consisted of the Brown, Caliman, Clifford, Earley, Green, Guy, Harper, Lett, Lucas, Pointer, Simpson, Stevens, Goins and Tate families to name a few. Many of these family names came from mixed - American Indian ancestry. It became known as the "Lett Settlement " due to the fact that Lett family members outnumbered other families in the settlement.
=== Benjamin Banneker book by Bedini:
"Aquilla Lett Sr. married Christina Cobbler, a white woman of German descent who may have had some Indian antecedents, and they had ten children."
=== Jimmy Lett:
Front: Aquilla Lett & Sarah Jane
Back: Armintha, Stanley, & Ellsworth Lett
THE HISTORY OF THE Lett FAMILY: This Lett family history can be traced back to 1683 to the arrival of their ancestor,Molly Welsh, an English dairymaid, who had been falsely accused of a crime of theft. Due to her ability to read she was spared a death sentence and was sent to the English province of Maryland as an indentured servant.
After seven years Molly was freed and eventually purchased her own small farm in Maryland. While she prospered she knew that she would need more help with her farm and began to save money. Although Molly was opposed to slavery, her survival left her with few options. Molly purchased two slaves and after a period of time freed both. She eventually married one of them, who was named Bannaka, an African prince from the Wolof Kingdom of Walo, located in Senegal.
Molly took her husbands name as her surname, which eventually became Banneker. The couple had 4 daughters; the oldest of whom was also named Mary. Mary married a former slave, who had converted to Christianity and changed his name to Robert and his wife's last name. They had 5 children; 1 son and 4 daughters; Benjamin, Jemima, Julian, Minta and Molly.
Benjamin Banneker is noted in United States history as the first African-American 'man of Science', who among other accomplishments wrote an almanac, assisted in the surveying of Washington D.C. and made the first clock in America.
Benjamin's sister, Jemima married Samuel Lett, his family name originally was Delaney and that he was of combined English, Irish, and Indian descent. When he was a small boy his widowed mother, a white woman, married again, to an African-American named Zachariah Lett. Samuel, taking his step fathers name, became known as Samuel Delaney Lett. They had 8 children, 7 migrated with their families and settled in Meigs Twp, Muskingum Co, Ohio, which borders on Guernsey Co.
The Lett Settlement was a self-sustaining community of mixed race families; with the Letts, Calimans and Guys, forming ties with each other through marriages and common family backgrounds while living in Maryland and Virginia. Additionally it has been documented that the Tate and Norman families also resided in Maryland and had a long history of interactions with these families.
Aquilla Lett, a man of mixed African American, European and possibly Native American heritage settled on a farm In Meigs Twp, Muskingum Co, Ohio around 1819. Soon several other families with simular heritage settled on farms nearby, forming a community. The Lett Settlement was one of the earliest African American mixed race communities to be settled in Ohio. Aquilla Lett Sr., b. 1758 Baltimore Co. Md. d. May 1, 1848 in Meigs Twp, Muskingum Co, Ohio; married Christina "Charity" Cobbler on Tues, Sept 27, 1787 in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Frederick Md.. Christina was b. 1768 d. March 26, 1848 in Meigs Twp, Muskingum Co, Ohio. Aqulla is the oldest son of Samuel and Jemima Banneker Lett. He owned a 79 acre farm in Meigs Twp in the section referred to as the Lett Families Settlement.
TURNER SIMPSON JR.: THE LETT SETTLEMENT IN OHIO I wish to correct some mistakes that were made of speakers at the reunion of colored people at Meigs Township last Sunday. Possibly with the exception of one of my nephews, I am the only living person who knows the true history of the colored people, of the well-known LETT SETTLEMENT. The Browns and Calimans were not the first settlers of Meigs Co or Tw. In the year 1825, two of the Letts, Meshack [1768-1848] and Aquilla living in Maryland then, moved by the desire to better their condition, turned their face toward the setting sun, started west and traveled to Belmont Co, Ohio. Meshack, the older, not being satisfied, went up into Meigs twp, and located; the rest followed. The Letts were of German decent. Those who followed were Aquilla, Elgin, Benjamin and Samuel with two sisters, Mollie and Kissiah. These people, one (Aquilla Lett) took up land, and in Feb of the following year my father, who was Turner Simpson with Benjamin Caliman came in; both took up land. My father (Turner Simpson) took up the last piece of land homesteaded by a colored man in the LETT settlement, that being the forty-acre tract directly across the road from Coal Hill Post Office. The LETT men were all married and raised families. Meshack married a half-breed Indian, named Roddie Cummings; Ben married Polly Caliman; Aquilla married Christina Cobbler; ...
=== Paul Heinegg. http://www.freeafricanamericans.com/Kelly-Owens.htm
These families were pioneers in Ohio, in the areas of civil rights, education and voting.
Provided by Henry Burke, cousin and Historian
Benjamin Banneker book by Bedini