*******Information like this could be valuable, but until some further connection is made it is hard to know what to do with it. There is no shortage of men named "John Henry." As Uncle Beverly Standard put it to Guy Johnson (quoted from Johnson's book): "Which John Henry do you want to know about? I've known so many John Henrys."*******
How much information is there about Afro-American men named John Henry of the correct age, living (and perhaps born) within "walking distance" of the C&0 tunnel project? What further connection needs to be "made" before something further is done with it?
Pardon me if I am wrong, but I don't think we are talking about "John Henrys" of Finnish extraction living in Nome, Alaska in 1923.
As a subset of all the John Henrys, I would think that a man of the right race, right age in the right place at the right time would be a very small subset, especially given that the population of the area was (at the time) and continues to be small.
The Will names other slaves who were likely family members. Again, many families of freed slaves remain in the area and may have knowledge through oral history, etc.
When I started family research in Monroe, I did not expect to find much, but again, so little has changed and so many peoples families have been there continuously since the 1700s, that I found an amazing amount of oral history, original documents, buildings, etc.
Again, any serious John Henry researchers out there?