During the Battle of Wilson’s Creek, on August 10, 1861, Rhoda and her children initially sought shelter in the cellar of the Ray house, then helped treat the wounded after the house was occupied as a Southern field hospital.
Rhoda was freed in 1865 and moved to Springfield, Missouri, where she married John Jones in 1868; she took in laundry and her husband worked in a stone quarry. Rhoda Jones died in Springfield, Missouri, on November 4, 1897, and is buried in Hazelwood Cemetery.
Rhoda Ray was born a slave about 1824; she and her children were owned by John Ray. She was referred to as “Aunt Rhoda” by the Ray family, and she and the children worked on the Ray farm.
This undated post-Civil War photograph was taken at Prof. Walter Mitchell’s Fine Art Gallery, Springfield, Missouri, circa 1897. “Slave of G-Mother Ray” is written on the back.
Carte-de-Visite by Prof. Walter Mitchell’s Fine Art Gallery, Springfield, Mo.