Georgia Heroine

Living Historian Persona:  Lavinia Robinson Flagg

Lavinia Flagg
Wife of Wilkes Flagg
Drawing Courtesy:
Lois W. Lane
Flagg Chapel Church
Milledgeville, GA


Birth: 1812
Death: June 1901
Parents:  African mother unknown / Father unkown

Residence: Milledgeville, Georgia
Husband: Wilkes Flagg, a blacksmith and maître d’hôtel at the Georgia Old Governor’s Mansion for former Governors George W. Towns and Howell Cobb
Renewed Marriage Vows to Wilkes: September 16, 1865
Mother of: Wilkes B. Flagg
Final Resting Place: Next to her husband, Wilkes Flagg, in unmarked graves at Memorial Hill Cemetery which is adjacent to Flaggs Chapel Baptist Church (Milledgeville, Georgia)

SLAVERY: Based On Preponderance of the Evidence

  • Slave Owner of Lavinia: Physician and Politician Tomlinson Fort of Milledgeville, Georgia
  • Slave Owners of Husband, Wilkes:  (1) The Lamar Family near Eatonton, Georgia at the Lamar home on Little River (i.e. family of Mary Ann Lamar Cobb) and  (2) Tomlinson Fort of Milledgeville, Georgia
  • Manumission: Tomlinson Fort offered to manumit Wilkes; however, Wilkes refused and saved money in order to purchase his freedom and that of Lavinia and their son.  Wilkes purchased her freedom from slavery for $975. [Friend Volume 17 Issue 11 Page 102. Honolulu, HI]
  • Guardians for Wilkes and Lavinia as Free People of Color: Tomlinson Fort and George W. Fort.


1851-1853 Role:  Personal Female Confidant of First Lady Mary Ann Cobb, wife of former Governor Howell Cobb
19th Century Political Affiliation: Democrat
Civil War:  The Wilkes’ Family donated $25 to a Confederate States Army local military company. [On the Threshold of Freedom: Master and Slaves in Civil War Georgia by Clarence L. Mohr. pp. 66-67]
First Lady: Flagg Chapel Baptist Church
Founders of:  Eddy School, the first African American school which was first located at Flagg Chapel Baptist Church in Milledgeville, Georgia
Personality: Quiet


  • Austin, Jeannette Holland. The Georgians: Genealogies of Pioneer Settlers. Clearfield: 2009). p. 210. Print.
  • Friend: 1866 Volume 17 Issue 11 Page 102. Honolulu, HI
  • Georgia College: Georgia’s Public Liberal Arts University. The GC Flagg Social Justice Legacy Award. Web. 8 Jan. 13. < >
  • Grant, Donald Lee and Jonathan Grant. The Way It Was in the South: The Black Experience in Georgia. University of Georgia Press: 2001. p. 73. Print.
  • Knight, Lucian Lamar. Georgia’s Landmarks, Memorials, and Legends: Volume 1, Part 1. Pelican Publishing Company: 2006. p. 274.
  • Mohr, Clarence L. On the Threshold of Freedom: Masters and Slaves in Civil War Georgia. Louisiana State University Press: 2001. pp. 66-67. Print.


  • Georgia Old Governor’s Mansion (January 2013)
  • Georgia College Library Special Collections (January 2013):  Viewed the James C. Bonner Collection


  • Georgia College Library Special Collections Folders: (1) Flagg, Rev. Wilkes; (2) Eddy School Neighborhood; (3) Flagg Chapel Baptist Church, (4) First African Church  [Note: Was not shown the following folders during the January 2013 Trip.]
Rev. Wilkes FlaggCourtesy:

Rev. Wilkes Flagg
Friend. 1 Nov. 1866
Honolulu, HI