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Here's the next in the series of discussion regarding Joseph and
Sarah Lapsley as well as William and Martha Lapsley.
-------- Original Message --------
William G. wrote:
>On page 129 of the Woods-McAfee Memorial by Neander Woods, he notes that Jean Lapsley was the
>daughter of Joseph and Sarah Woods Lapsley. He did put a question mark by her birth year of 1748.
Interesting isn't it, that both Neander Woods and Sarah Lapsley Liston Long show Jean born in 1748, but Neander's work questioned the
date of Jean's birth. Could they both have been referring to the daughter of William and Martha..? Since we now know that William and
Martha didn't marry until sometime after Sep 1743, most likely after Jan 1743 when Martha's father's will was submitted for probate, it's
possible that their daughter Jean Lapsley may have been born ca 1747-48. Since Martha's brother's will shows their three children as John,
Thomas and Jean, in that order, it's quite possible that John may have been born ca 1744-45, Thomas born ca 1745-46, and Jean ca 1746-48.
Since the Cloyd(e) & Lapsley marriage took place sometime ca May 1764, that would make William and Martha's daughter Jean approximately 16 to
18 years of age. Joseph and Sarah's daughter Jean would have been approximately 23 years of age. Since James Cloyd(e) was born in Oct
1731, his age would have been 33 when married. A ten to fifteen year difference in ages was not unheard of in those days. So we're still
back to the original question -- which Jean Lapsley married James Cloyd(e).
Of course we also don't know just how many more children were born to either family following ca 1755. If Sarah Woods was in fact 17 when she
married Joseph Lapsley ca 1740, then she'd have been about 32-33 when William Lapsley and Martha Irwin moved to the same area. Since we know
from Martha's father's will that she was born sometime after Sep 1723, she would have been about 32 at the oldest in 1755. We also know that
William apparently died ca 1771 so it's conceivable that both women could have had two or three more children each during the period from
1755 to 1765. Since Neander Woods' book made no mention of William and Martha Lapsley, it's entirely possible that his assumption regarding the
children of Joseph and Sarah was at least partially wrong. The information pertaining to William and Martha Lapsley was there, so
either he ignored it or missed it completely. It's pretty hard to second guess an author who's work was published in 1912. Granted, much
of the subsequent information wasn't published until several years later, the records obviously existed before 1912. I'd found references
to William Lapsley in Augusta Co., VA about 8 years ago, one such reference indicated that William was the father of Thomas Lapsley; but
it wasn't until I came across a copy of her brother's (Thomas Irwin) will in Chester Co., PA that I was able to confirm that William Lapsley
was the father of Thomas of PA and the husband of the Widow Martha Lapsley..
>The year was probably 1793 as another publication indicated the Johnson Stone Castle" built upon Lapsley land (Joseph Lapsley) was built in 1793. Joseph Lapsley's will was entered in the court records in April, 1788.
Will have to check my back files, but seem to recall reading somewhere that Joseph named his land "Stonecastle". According to the
extracted information from Neander Woods' book another researcher provided me -- Joseph Lapsley Sr.'s will named only two sons, John and
Joseph Jr., with no mention of daughters. I have no way of knowing at this time how accurate this extract is, but from other material provided
by the same source, which I have been able to verify, it's reasonable to consider his work reliable until proven otherwise. A good source of
reference you might wish to check is Chalkey's book "Chronicles of the Scotch-Irish Settlement in Virginia", all three volumes of which can now
be found on-line at:
Neander Woods' book can be purchased on-line, but can't recall the exact URL right now. Search for "Woods-McAfee Memorial" and you should
be able to find the site. I think they want $75.00 for a paper back copy and $85.00 or $90.00 for a hard back copy, plus shipping and
Have a great day and a better tomorrow... See Ya' -- Clyde
Clyde Lapsley <CLapsley(a)att.net>
Here's the beginning of an ongoing discussion between myself and
another Lapsley researcher. If any of you have additional information
which might help shed some light on this, please let the list know. Thanks.
Have a great day and a better tomorrow... See Ya' -- Clyde
Clyde Lapsley <CLapsley(a)att.net>
-------- Original Message --------
I did a little research last night and offer the following comments and
on 2/22/03 5:27 AM, Clyde Lapsley at CLapsley(a)worldnet.att.net wrote:
> Hi Bill:
> William G. wrote:
>> I saw your response to my reply. Without going back to the original source
>> documents, from memory, I believe the daughter Jean was identified in the
>> Woods-McAfee Memorial published by Neander S. Woods in 1912.
> Yes, I've seen part of his work also, but bear in mind that it was
> published in 1912. My information regarding William and family has only
> recently come to light. Most of the earlier published works simply
> didn't go quite far enough in their research efforts. The information
> regarding William was there all along. He signed as a witness to some
> legal documents between 1756 and 1757 along with a John Lapsley who
> could not possibly have been the son of either Joseph or William. He
> was listed as deceased by the court clerk in Feb 1762. He purchased 90
> acres near Lexington in Nov. 1762, was court-martialed for failing make
> a muster in 1767, etc.. Most likely he died ca 1770 as his widow and
> surviving son Thomas relocated to Mifflin Twp., PA ca 1771/72. Thomas'
> land was adjacent to the land of a James Irwin, possibly a kin of
> Martha's. James Irwin's land was located where the Allegheny County
> Airport is now..
Jean Lapsley was identified as a daughter of Joseph Lapsley in the
publication of "The Longs, Listons, and Some Related Families" published by
Sarah Lapsley Liston Long not "published before 1950" as described next, but
in 1972. (I have a copy.) Sarah Long noted Jean was born in "1748" on page
109 of that publication and noted her marriage to Captain James Cloyd. From
your e-mail yesterday, noting Jean was baptized 15 Oct 1741 "apparently at
'Gilbert Campbell's, North Branch of James River'", it is clear that Sara
Long was incorrect by 7 years. This would make more sense as Joseph Lapsley
and Sarah Woods were married in 1741 when Sarah Woods was but 17 years old.
This would make Jean the eldest of Joseph's children. It would make the
marriage of Jean to Captain James Cloyd more likely when you look at his
age, being born in 1731, only a ten year difference in age. The baptism at
Gilbert Campbell's makes sense in 1741 when you look at the formation of the
Hall's Meeting House, aka Forks of the James, aka Old Monmouth Presbyterian
Church located on the James River in Lexington, Virginia. Joseph's land was
within two miles of the original church and he was an "ardent supporter" of
the old Presbyterian Church. The Hall's Meeting House was formed in the
early to mid 1740's. I've walked the land and cemetery grounds looking for
Joseph, Sarah and Joseph, Jr.'s graves and I now believe the three are
buried on the old Lapsley homestead where the "Johnstone Stonecastle" is now
located. "Stonecastle" was built in 1793, 5 years after Joseph died in
1788, on Joseph's orginal land.
There are other errors in Sarah Long's publication, not major, but still
errors. She noted Joseph B. Lapsley was born October 5, 1779. He was born
October 3, 1779. She also reported he died about 1783. He died on
September 25, 1823 in Bowling Green, Kentucky. (From the headstone.)
With respect to the John and William "Lapsley" reported above with the
Irwins, I've located an abstract of Thomas Irwins Will filed in Chester
County, Pennsylvania that sheds light on the various relationships. The
Will is dated September 13, 1756 and entered December 22, 1757, D.98. First
of all, the Lapsley you've noted is spelled "Lapsly" in Thomas Irwins will.
It begins: "To mother Mary Irwin my house and plantation her life time,
after her decease to brothers Samuel and William Irwin, to sister Martha's
children John, Thomas and Jean Lapsly £10 each at interest till they come of
age. To brother William Lapsly and sister Martha Lapsly 5 shillings each.
Executors: Mother Mary and brother Samuel."
If you diagram the relationships, Mary Irwin had four children, Samuel,
Thomas, William and Martha. Martha married William Lapsly and had three
children, namely John Lapsly, Thomas Lapsly and Jean Lapsly.
>From this, I would tend to conclude the John Irwin that you note as
"possibly a kin of Martha's" above, is likely the son of Samuel Irwin or
>> Also, my recollection is Jean is mentioned either in Joseph's will or when
>> they sold Joseph's land in 1793.
> My recollection is slightly different. I believe that the
> Woods-McAfee material shows his will didn't identify any of his
> daughters, only his sons. Bear in mind though that if Jean was born
> after 1747, she would most likely have been a minor when William died ca
> 1768-1770. Since there were no legal adoptions then, it was quite
> customary for a brother to informally adopt the minor children of his
> deceased brother, and raise them as his own. Of course this is
> speculative and predicated on there being only one Jean born..!
> My main point though was that if there were in fact two Jeans born, which one
> married James Cloyd(e)..?
There were two Jean's. Jean Lapsley, daughter of Joseph Lapsley who married
Captain James Cloyd. And, Jean Lapsly, daughter of William Lapsly and
Martha Irwin, further we knoweth not, absent information to the contrary.
>> I do not rule out the possibility that there may have been other brothers or
>> even >> sisters of Joseph, Samuel and James, but I've not seen anything to prove it.
> While I can't rule out the possibility of James and Samuel being
> brothers of Joseph, looking in the book "The Longs, The Listons, and
> Some Related Families" by Sarah Lapsley Liston Long, published before
> 1950, on p 108, she states: "Like many other Protestant families in
> northern Ireland, the Lapsleys, believed to be of Huguenot extraction,
> were apparently from Scotland". She also stated a bit further on: "The
> first of the family whom we can identify individually was Joseph
> Lapsley, who came with his two brothers from Ireland to America about
> 1734, settling briefly in Pennsylvania, and then coming on down into the
> Valley of Virginia".. This was the legend or tradition. The facts are
> that there were three separate Lapsley families living in the colonies
> from ca 1740 through 1750, two in PA and one in VA.
This would tend to prove the legend/tradition was factual in origin. (??)
> I've also seen published genealogies on the 'net showing that Joseph
> was born ca 1722 in PA and another showing his birth ca 1724 in PA.
> None of these have shown any proof or source documents confirming this.
> It's my theory right now that they may have arrived as early as 1724.
Possibly, but when you look at the Scots-Irish migration occuring heavily in
1715, the conclusion is unsupported. When the Lords raised the rents on
tenant farmers (Socts-Irish) in the 1710-1715 period, there was the
beginning of a mass exodus from "The North of Ireland". The Lords literally
priced the farmers out of existence, so they left for the colonies.
> In that case it's also possible that William may have been a son of one of
> the brothers.
Not from Joseph or Samuel Lapsley from my own research. Possibly from James
as he is the one I know the least about. Judging from what I know today, it
is more likely William Lapsly is possibly another brother, but not one of
the original three that came first to the colonies, and most likely a cousin.
> Taking the Will of William Coningham submitted for probate
> in Dec 1751, Lancaster Co., PA, he named his wife Isabel and their five
> children. In the Will of Richard Lapsley, signed on 6 Jun 1751 in
> Lancaster Co., and submitted for probate on 22 Nov 1751, he named
> his four brothers and also his married sister as Isabela Cunningham.
> This implies they were married ca 1746 or before. Assuming a minimum
> age of 13 for her at marriage, she would have been born ca 1733 or
> before. Taken in conjunction with William's marriage to Martha Irwin ca
> 1744-1753 in Chester Co., we see three separate families living here ca
> 1740-1750. The fact that William moved his family to near Lexington, VA
> before Aug 1756 where he was serving as a private in Joseph's militia
> company certainly implies they may well have been brothers. In order
> for William to witness legal documents in Nov 1756, he had to have been
> at least 16 years old, which implies he was born bef 1750, but he could
> hardly have married ca 1744-53 if he was born in 1750..! So he was
> probably born before 1729. I have a book on order that may shed more
> light on the subject, but until it arrives have no way of knowing for
> sure about Jean, and it may not prove anything either.
> If you'd like, I can eMail my transcripts of the Wills of Richard
> Lapsley and Thomas Irwin, or copies of the xerox copies sent to me.
>> We just need to go back far enough to make the link.
> My point also. As well as more research into the area around
> Lexington, VA is needed since both Joseph and William lived in that area
> and both almost certainly had children while living there after William
> Have a great day and a better tomorrow... See Ya' -- Clyde
> Clyde Lapsley