Mrs. Jefferson discussed how during the Civil War slaves barely knew any of the events which were taking place in the free Northern states. News and rumors of news were brought by peddlers, mail carriers, and travelers. Sophronia states that Lincoln’s name was forbidden to be spoken to anyone of color. She said that the biggest event in her life was news of the emancipation in 1862. The second big event in her life was the news of Lee’s surrender in 1865. The picture (shown above) which appeared in the Star Journal was taken from a daguerreotype taken on Christmas Day in 1865 in Indianapolis, when she was about 13 years old.
Sophronia was widowed as a young woman. In 1910, she was living in Sandusky with her daughter, granddaughter, and her uncle Harrison Bartlett, who had fought in the Civil War with the Massachusetts 55th Infantry. She was active in the Second Baptist Church on Decatur Street. At the 1919 “May Festival” sponsored by the Autumn Leaf Sewing Circle of the Second Baptist Church, Sophronia’s daughter Ella Miller displayed a log cabin silk quilt which had been made by her grandmother on a plantation in Kentucky in the 1800’s. The Star Journal article ends with an account of Sophronia voting in the November 4 election, and add that she had been driven to her voting place in an automobile. On August 24, 1927, Sophronia Jefferson died in Good Samaritan Hospital. Her funeral was held at her residence on Tyler Street, and she was buried in the Castalia Cemetery. She had lived a rich life, having overcome incredible challenges.