Flood Family Papers

A woman in a dress is seated and holds a paper fan
Portrait of Lydia Flood Jackson, circa 1880s, Flood family papers, MS 49, African American Museum & Library at Oakland, Oakland Public Library.

The Flood family was one of the earliest and most prominent African American families to settle in Oakland, California. After purchasing his freedom, Isaac Flood (1816-1892) moved to California in following the Gold Rush, settling in Oakland in 1853. He worked as a laborer and tradesman and married Elizabeth Thorn Scott (1828-1867) in 1855, a school teacher from Sacramento who started the first public school for African American students in the state. In 1857, Elizabeth opened a private school in the Flood home for African American students, which was moved to the African Methodist Church in 1863 and operated for three years before closing in 1866. The couple had two children, George Francis Flood, who was born in 1857 and was thought to be the first African American born in Oakland, California, and Lydia Flood (1862-1963).

The Flood Family Papers includes 18 photographs, Lydia Flood Jackson’s funeral program, and two letters written by Lydia Flood Jackson to Ruth Lasartemay.

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Dates: circa 1850s-1963
Collection number: MS 49
Collector: Flood, Lydia Flood.
Creator: Flood family.
Collection Size: .1 linear feet (2 folders)

Guide to the Flood Family Papers

Available at the African American Museum & Library at Oakland (AAMLO)

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