My Black History Part 5

Tracing Amy

My Black History is Ella Dukes Pruitt.  I never met her, but I have heard that she was about the business of doing business.



© 2018 Amy L. Cole and Tracing Amy: My Ancestral Journey. All rights reserved.


52 Ancestors #5: Grandma Ella

I was blessed to grow up knowing all of my grandparents except one.  My paternal grandmother, Louella DUKES PRUITT,  is the grandmother that I never got to meet.  I like to think that I would have called her Grandma Ella because Ella seems to be the name she went by.  Her death certificate has that she was born May 15, 1909 and died January 3, 19731.  Her death date is almost exactly 5 years prior to my birth.  Most of what I know about her has come from my dad and his two remaining siblings.  So far though, I only have one record of her and that’s her death certificate.

Since I still have more research to do in order to tell her story, I thought I would capture what I think I know.  I know she was born to William and Anna DUKES in Jasper County, MS.  I did find it written on another site that her mother was Angeline by stating that Anna and Angeline as the same person2. However, my family says that Angeline was the second wife and was not my grandmother’s mother.  Hopefully, I will be able to correctly document this during my research on the DUKES line for future generations.  Her mother is listed as unknown on the death certificate,  so I will have to check other records for her and her siblings to further document. I also know she was buried in the East Galilee Missionary Baptist Church Cemetery in Jasper County, MS.

Based on her death certificate, she lived in Los Angeles, California at the time of her death and had lived there for 12 years3. This would mean that she moved to California in either 1960 or 1961.  I do know that she moved there to join her husband (my grandfather), Samuel Wilson Pruitt, and they divorced a few years after (maybe 1962 or 1963).  So this is where I will start.  My next step will be to find the divorce record and see what it has in store.

This is my fifth post as a part of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge, created by Amy Johnson Crow of No Story Too Small.


1. Los Angeles County, California, death certificate no. 7097-000214 (1973), Ella Pruitt; Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk, Los Angeles.

2. Diane Payne, “William Dukes,” Jasper County, Mississippi Genealogy & History A MSGenWeb Project, 2009 ( [7 Feb 2013]).

3. Los Angeles Co., CA, death certificate no. 7097-000214 (1973), Ella Pruitt.

© 2014 Amy L. Cole and Tracing Amy: My Ancestral Journey. All rights reserved.

Cite This Page:
Amy L Cole, “52 Ancestors #5: Grandma Ella,” Tracing Amy: My Ancestral Journey, 1 April 2014 ( [access date]).

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