I’m eagerly delving into a book that arrived just today: Antonio Molina, Patriarch of the Anthony Mullins Family: An American History, compiled by Marjorie O’Brien Casteel. Who is Antonio Molina, AKA Anthony Mullins (or “little Anthony,” as Jefferson called him)? Mullins was one of the men brought to Virginia in 1773 by Philip Mazzei, friend and neighbor of Jefferson and collaborator in his efforts to make wine. Mullins was an interesting guy in his own right – he left Mazzei’s plantation to fight in the Revolution for a number of years, returned to Albemarle County and married twice, had eighteen children (the youngest of whom was born when Mullins was 73), moved to Tennessee, and died at the ripe old age of 86 or so. In a story of Internet triumph, various descendants of those eighteen children found each other online and collaborated to produce this book.
The book estimates the number of Mullins’ living descendants at over 10,000, which to me seems a good explanation of why we’ve had such a proportionately high number of inquiries about him.
And, it seems, Mullins never forgot Jefferson. Mullins’ children are listed in the book as: Elizabeth, Mary, Margaret, William, John, Sarah, Andrew, Nancy, Walter, Martin, George, Polly, Milly, Patsey, Vincent, Thomas Jefferson, Pleasant, and Eliza.