You would have to give us his and his wife's name,their approximate birth years, and the location in Mississippi in 1870 and in Tennessess in 1880 or links to his census entries, in order for us to help you search.
His name was David (Sometime listed as Dave) Swan and her name was Ella (Sledge) Swan. I found them in the 1870 census in Yazoo Mississippi, and in the 1880 census in Madison County Tennessee. I also found him in 1866 in the smallpox ward of the freedmen' hospital in Lauderdale Mississippi and later working as a carpenter's helper at the same hospital in 1866 and 1867. I found a labor contract for him in 1866 and their marriage license from 1870.
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A search in the National Archives Catalog did return results for a David, and Dave, Swan, and Ella Swan but judging by the dates of these records I believe that these are not the relatives that you’re looking for. Regardless, I’ve posted those searches below for your information:
A search on Ancestry yielded a result for one David Swan, with a wife named Ella, living in Alabama in 1930. This is in a Birmingham, Alabama, city directory. You can view this by following this link:
A search was conducted for Ella Swan and several results were found for her in city directories also. Those results can be viewed by following these links:
I noticed in Ancestry that in the 1880 Census it lists his place of birth as being in Mississippi, and for that of Ella as well. Also, if you perform a search in Ancestry one helpful feature can be found in the lower right corner of the page under the title "Suggested Records". There it will list possible connected records based on the search that was conducted. A decent amount of the time those suggestions are ones worth following.
Please note that Ancestry is a subscription-based database, but it is available for free public use at all National Archives facilities and many public libraries. Also, Family Search can be used as well and it’s free when you create an account.
Being that it looks like David and Ella Swan spent some time in Alabama, I would suggest that you reach out to the Alabama State Archives for help in researching them in that State. You can find their contact information here:
We hope this information is helpful and best of luck with your research!
Thank you for your help! I do have an ancestry.com subscription and have come across almost all of these in the past, although I haven't tried the Alabama archives. I will keep at it. Thanks again.