Alfred Newton Handy (Madison County)


Alfred Newton Handy

State House: 1870-1875

Born: c. 1830 in Georgia
Died: January 8, 1913 in Canton, MS

Methodist minister and member of the first election board held in Mississippi during Reconstruction. Handy is listed on the 1870 census in Canton with wife Martha and two sons, Newton and Henry. In 1880, he appears with wife Corinne, his son Newton, and a stepson named John Hall. In 1900, he is listed with wife Ella and daughter Mattie. Newton Handy (b. 1855) married a Laura Jones, and his family is well documented in Madison County in later records.

Handy’s descendant, Newton Alfred Handy III, wrote this Handy family history available through the Mississippi Digital Library.

“Alfred Newton Handy was born in Georgia around 1830. He was the first Black who held office in Canton and was appointed by the Board of Police in the courthouse on September 20, 1869 as a replacement for Vice-Admiral Pendleton… At this time, he was the largest Black landowner in Madison County (total assets $2,200.00). He was also the founder and pastor of Asbury United Methodist Church in Canton.”
(Newton Alfred Handy III, Handy family history)

Memorial on Find A Grave


Signature of Alfred Handy from an 1874 petition to Governor Ames