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Found your message when we got home. Glad to see you back on the
computer. Colorado Springs next summer sounds interesting. Maybe this
would be good time to get cracking on a Lapsley/Armstrong controversy
worthy of resolving. And the key to the resolution might just be in your
For reasons I don't now recall, we long ago concluded that Elizabeth
Armstrong (1758 - pre-1794), youngest daughter of James and Mary Bird
Armstrong and little sister of Captain William Armstrong married James
Lapsley, a brother of Captain William's wife Jane. Clyde Lapsley, David
Froelich and Jessie Hooper (whom we visited in Florida) believe that
Elizabeth married Thomas Lapsley Jr. another brother of James and Jane.
James and Thomas Lapsley Jr. and their nephew, Thomas Armstrong - eldest
son of Captain William and Jane Lapsley Armstrong - were living in Orange
County, NC, when they acquired land in Georgia. This might have been in
connection with one of the Land Lotteries conducted by the state in 1803,
1806, or 1819 to encourage occupation of former Indian lands in the
When James Lapsley died in Orange County in 1821, he bequeathed his half
interest in Georgia land which he owned jointly with nephew Thomas
Armstrong to four of Thomases children: Anderson, Aseneth, Thomas Lapslie
and Mitchell Armstrong. The land was said to be located in Montgomery
County, GA, and the four heirs were all then living in Orange Co., NC.
When Thomas Lapsley Jr. died c1828, he was living on his Georgia farm and
was prosperous enough to own several slaves. According to a Williamson
County, TN, court record, his only heirs were nephews Thomas, James and
William Lapsley Armstrong and their sister, Mary Armstrong Tinnin.
James, who by then had moved from Orange County, NC to Tennessee, was
named administrator of Uncle Tom's estate. The location of Thomas
Lapsley's Georgia property was not mentioned in the
Tennessee court record.
When Thomas Armstrong died in Orange County in 1835, he left his
Montgomery County, GA, property to his son, Thomas Lapsley Armstrong, who
was then at the U of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
To my knowledge, no one has ever searched Georgia records for Thomas
Lapsley's activities there or for further information about his land and
that of brother James, nephew Thomas Armstrong and their various heirs.
We don't know where Thomas Lapsley's land was, but since brother and
nephew had a tract in Montgomery County, the obvious first place to
search is the records of that county and those of Washington County out
of which Montgomery as created.
The things we need to look for are Thomas Lapsley's Will and associated
Probate Court records , deeds pertaining to Lapsley/Armstrong lands, and
mentions on tax lists, in Common Court minutes, State and Federal census
returns, homesteads, land warrants and indentures between 1800 and 1840.
Some of this could be in the Montgomery and Washington County seats of
Mt. Vernon and Sandersville, respectively, but the best bet would be the
State Dept. of History and Archives in Atlanta. I know they have lists
of Georgia Land Lottery participants, for example, and the originals of
many early county records.
How about taking this project on Helen?