Finding Aid to the Fractious Family Papers
Portions of this collection are digitized

Collection ID:
bulk 1940-1970
Physical Description:
1.7 Linear feet
5 boxes

Arrangement note
Arrangement note
The papers are organized in five series.
Series 1: Biographical Material Series 2: Correspondence Series 3: Legal Files Series 4: Printed Materials Series 5: Photographs

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
William Fractious was born in Virginia around 1827. He and his wife Lucy were likely part of the 40,000 formerly enslaved African American refugees who came to Washington, D.C., during the Civil War. A carpenter by profession, William acquired lot 7 of section 3 of a new development, Barry Farm. The settlement was created by the Freedmen's Bureau who sold building lots to the newly freed men and women.
Robert "Bobbie" Fractious (1920 – 1996) was the son of William II and Mary V. Fractious. He had two sisters, Bessie (1918) and Lillian (1915) and one brother, Preston "Bootsie" (1922). He attended elementary school and one year of high school before joining the Civilian Conservation Corps. Robert served in New Cumberland, Pennsylvania in 1939 and Camp Ellis, Illinois in 1940. He enlisted in the United States Army in 1941 as a corporal in Croft, South Carolina and eventually moved up in rank to Staff Sargent. During his service in World War II, he was assigned to the Quartermasters Corps in the Pacific Theater, in Australia. After the war, Robert continued serving in the army for over 20 years.
Blanche Lucille Queen (1923 – 2001) married Robert Fractious on December 2, 1945. She was the daughter of Robert H. and Louise E. Queen. Blanche had two sisters, Thelma (1923 – 2005) and Roberta "Diddie" (1924 – 2013). Blanche graduated from Shaw Junior High in 1938 and Armstrong High School in 1941. After marriage, Robert and Blanche settled on Shannon Place in Southeast, D.C., and the couple had two children, Deborah Camille (1952 – 1995) and Rene Emil (1954 – 2017). She worked for the State Department then at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for 30 years.
A fifth generation Fractious, Rene Emil Fractious was a proud descendant of the original Barry farm settlers. He spoke at the 2009 Washington Historical Studies Conference about his family legacy and the strong postbellum African American community.

Sarah Wagner 2017; revised by Jennifer Morris
Immediate Source of Acquistion note
The Fractious Family papers were donated to the Anacostia Community Museum on February 1, 2017, by Kristina Leszczak and Rene Fracticious.
Processing Information note
Miminially processed in July 2017 by intern Shannon Wagner. Finding aid revised in January 2021 by archivist Jennifer Morris.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Use note
The Fractious Family papers are the physical property of the Anacostia Community Museum. Literary and copyright belong to the author/creator or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, and to obtain permission to publish or reproduce, contact the Museum Archives.
Preferred Citation note
Fractious Family papers, Anacostia Comunity Museum, Smithsonian Institution, gift of Kristina Leszczak and Rene Fracticious.

More Information

Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Correspondence Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Anacostia (Washington, D.C.) Geographic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
African Americans -- Washington (D.C.) Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
African American families Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographs Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Certificates Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Military service -- World War, 1914-1918 Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Anacostia Community Museum Archives
1901 Fort Place, SE
Washington, D.C. 20020