States: Tennessee: Hancock
The problem the you face is that the records of Hancock County were destroyed in a series of fires. If I remember correctly, the last one was in the 1930s. There are just a few available for any period before that. There are no death records before 1908 and I didn't see Rufus in those records. Now, just as a hint, I wouldn't pay too much attention to race in Eastern Tennessee up through 1900. We have several examples of Melungeons being classified as Black or Mulatto in 1900 even though they were classified as White in 1880. For example, the whole family of Alex Minor, son of Claiborne Minor, were listed as Black in 1900 Hancock County. Race was in the eye of the enumerator. You were not asked what your race was in the census.
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