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I am the great-granddaughter of Ella Mae Poythress, b. January 16, 1866 and d. May 13, 1937 in Orange County, North Carolina. She married Sydney Freemont Long. I believe her father is George W. Poythress and her mother Permelia/Pamela Susan due to Census records. I also believe George W.'s father is Edward Poythress and his mother Mahala Nance, again due to census records. I am trying to find more information about any of these families, especially Edward's parents (Lewis Poythress and Patsey Elizabeth Giles?) and grandparents. Any ideas? Thanks,
The below info was transcribed here on 25 July 2002 by Barbara Poythress
Neal from info seen that date at the website for the General Land Office,
Bureau of Land Management, Eastern States Division
This particular record was located by clicking on "Search Land Patents" in
the left portion of the green band across the top of the initial page. One
need enter only his/her zipcode (so they can see how many folks they are
serving from various areas of the US), and then, for the below record,
enter ARKANSAS in the search block for the state desired, and POYTHRESS in
the search block for surname.
I would encourage anyone interested to go to the website & check all the
states listed for any surname of interest. Note that the original 13
states are NOT General Land Office states. Numerous Poythress individuals
are found listed.
The site is extremely easy to use, and after viewing the initial info that
has been entered for the individual record in the searchable database, one
can click to see an image of the original document, in a choice of formats
-- a small GIF; a large GIF; PDF; or TIFF, and can easily print the image.
The description at the opening screen of the website states in part that
the site is designed to "provide live access to Federal land conveyance
records for the Public Land States. We also provide image access to more
than two million Federal land title records for Eastern Public Land States,
issued between 1820 and 1908. Images of Serial patents (land titles issued
between 1908 and the
mid-1960's) are currently being added to this web site. Due to organization
of documents in the GLO collection, this site does not currently contain
every Federal title record issued for the Public Land States."
Patentee: POYTHRESS, LILLY
Warrantee: POYTHRESS, PETER
Issue Date: 11/27/1820
Land Office: Arkansas
Mineral Reservations: No
Authority: May 6, 1812: ScripWarrant Act of 1812 (2 Stat. 728)
Document Nr: 21831
Accession/Serial Nr. AR2960__.013
BLM Serial Nr: AR NO S/N
Legal Land Description:
Aliquot Parts: NE
Fract. Section: No
Meridian: 5th PM
Survey Nr: [blank]
Below is Bpn's 25 July 2002 transcription of the associated Acrobat Reader
image file (AR2960_.013.PDF) for the above-described document [note:
portions below that are contained between asterisks (such as **) were
filled in by hand in a pre-printed form]:
**Ex'd, James Monroe, 13**
President of the United States of America, TO ALL TO WHOM THESE PRESENTS
SHALL COME, GREETING:
Know ye, That, in pursuance of the Acts of Congress appropriating and
granting Land to the late Army of the United States, passed on and since
the sixth day of May, 1812, **Lilly Poythress heir at law of Peter
Poythress deceased** having deposited in the General Land-office a Warrant
in **her** favor, numbered **21831** there is granted unto **the said
Lilly Poythress heir at Law of Peter Poythress dec'd,** late a **private
in Peyton's Comp'y, of the 20 Regimt, of Infantry** a certain Tract of
Land, containing **One hundred & sixty Acres** being in the **NorthEast
quarter** of Section **Twenty seven** of Township **Seven North** in
Range **Thirteen West** in the Tract appropriated (by the Acts aforesaid)
for Military Bounties in the Territory of **Arkansas** TO HAVE AND TO
HOLD the said **quarter** Section of Land, with the appurtenances thereof,
unto the said **Lilly Poythress heir at Law of Peter Poythress dec'd**
and to **her** heirs and assigns for ever.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have caused these Letters to be made patent, and
the Seal of the General Land Office to be hereunto affixed. Given under my
Hand, at the City of Washington, this **twenty seventh** day of
**November** in the Year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and
**twenty** and of the Independence of the United States of America, the
By the President , **J M**
**J M** Commissioner of the General Land-Office
Ancestry.com is offering a DNA testing for individuals for a price of about
$200 per person. The method is they send you something like a q-tip and you
swash it around in your mouth against the check. You mail it back and they
send you your own DNA code.
Obviously, $200 is something of a stopper.
I don't know that we'd be doing it so much for ourselves as for succeeding
generations. However there would be some potential present benefits for us
even despite the fact that we can't obtain DNA samples from our people long
dead. For example, Lyn and I might establish the link that we are cousins
via Thomas Poythress. We might even be able to calculate (or have calculated
for us) the amount of degradatiojn in the DNA reading as it passes from
generation to generation. Bud and I would presumablly link back to Thomas
via one of the Merediths, etc. etc.
Another downside is that the DNA lines can only track parent-gender
exclusively; i. e., none of the information for any of our males would be
applicable for the females. But, of course, the females can run their own
line, it would just be a separate line.
Even though our records in general contain many more male surnames than
female surnames, this might not necessarily be a loss. If we can document
positively a particular marriage we could coordinate some of the prior or
following genealogical lines even if they do cross genders.
As a practical matter, I think we will have left enough documented evidence
on ourselves, even if just hanging out there in cyberspace forever or on
paper, that our
downstream benefit would be a matter of personal decision on whether it's
worth 200 bucks or not.
I am saying if this e-mail generates a hue and cry from several of you
wanting to do this exercise, I suppose I could say I have spent $200 a lot
dumber over the course of my life and would be willing to participate.
Barbara......I'm not certain we don't have two guys named Peter here but if
it is all the same guy he is a big time mover-about.
Bud has him (I can't recall the source but I DON'T think it was one Bud would
bet the ranch on) dying in SC about 1812.
I then find a Peter unquestionably the son of Meredith, Sr. in Georgia in
SCREVEN COUNTY Book A-2, p. 182.
7th day of ____, 1809
Peter Poythress, of Screven County, Ga. first part, conveys to Thomas
Cleaton, second part, of Macklenburg (sic) County , Va., for 43L current
money of Virginia, paid to his father, Meredith Poythress, by said Cleaton,
and for one cent in United States coin, paid to Peter Poythress by Thomas
Cleaton, a certain tract of land in Macklenburg (sic) County, Virginia
containing 50 acres by estimation.
In presence of: Peter Poythress (ls)
Hardy Parker, James Ponder
Recorded 30th day of October 1809
Roger McKinney, Clerk
(looks like Peter just got skinned out of 43L by his father and grandfather <
At this point, Bud and I shared a skeptical observation that even if he did
die in SC in 1812 he was for sure in Georgia in 1809. Now we PERHAPS have
him appearing in VA enlisting for the War of 1812 in 1814, serving, and then
dying in Norfolk, VA in 1815. It would not logically fall into place for him
to be enlisting in Pittsylvania County . However, if he was just dying to
enlist in VA and not NC, Danville by all logic would be just right over the
Throwing out the SC death in 1812 as undocumented, it would not be totally
unreasonable to speculate that Peter returns to Virginia to enlist in 1814
and dies in 1815 (KIA?). I realize you were winging it from memory when you
answered Elaine on this one and will no doubt want to get back to your
Mitigating FOR "your" man to be Peter son of Meredith is that Peter himself
appears no more in Georgia after this one 1809 document so he could easily
have returned to Virginia. As we have learned, these guys were a lot more
VA-GA-AL mobile than we originally expected them to be.. Also, we have
Peter's brother Cleton's 1828 Screven County will in which he bequeaths
something or other to each of his brothers and sisters and brother Peter is
not included, perhaps suggesting that Peter did die in 1815 or, at least was
not alive in 1828 or maybe alive but not even in Georgia.
And if (?) wife Lilly gets land in Arkansas it might well be an award for
Peter's service in War of 1812. Otherwise, we still have Lilly hanging out
there in thin air and no other connection.
What it strikes me that we really need is some linkage between Peter showing
in VA tax records 1800-01 as son of Meredith and again in 1809 in GA AND the
Peter who enlists in Pittsylvania County, VA in 1814. I would love to wrap
this one together as it would wrap Peter up without any loose ends and get
him out of the speculation column. Until we do make this linkage, and
barring further strong circumstantial evidence that this Peter is indeed one
guy and the son of Meredith, Sr., I'm inclined to agree with your origiinal
comment that we make this one a "possible."
Did you find anything further when you got home?
in a message dated 7/10/2002 8:45:31 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
> I'm travelling & don't have full info about Meredith's son Peter, but I do
> have the below info, summarized as [see below for details]:
> Born about 1782 in Dinwiddie County, VA
> Was residing in Mecklenburg Co, VA in 1800 & 1801
> Was enlisted at Danville, [in Pittsylvania County] VA 9 Aug 1814
> Died 19 Feb 1815 Norfolk, VA
> It seems to me that, in addition to this, we've also figured out that he
> was married & that his widow was named perhaps Lilly (going by memory here)
> & that she got land which may have been in Arkansas -- The info about her
> getting land, I think came from the (online) G.L.O., BLM records, Eastern
> States Division (which, as I recall, stands for General Land Office, Bureau
> of Land Management).
> I have NO marriage info for him in my database, so the above
> partially-recalled additional tidbit may have just been in the catagory of
> "this info seems to fit with this Peter."
> I don't recall ever learning of him having any descendants.
> He was listed twice -- in 1800 and 1801, in the "Mecklenburg County,
> Virginia Personal Property Tax Lists 1782-1805" Mecklenburg County, VA;
> Family History Library film 1,854,098. [Again, going by memory here: I
> think both times he was listed with Meredith, as his son, though maybe only
> in 1800 with Meredith as his son, and in 1801 alone maybe?)
> I've also examined Peter's "Compiled Military Service Record, War of 1812"
> [which records were not yet filmed as of my review and photocopying of them
> on 23 Mar 1996] National Archives, Washington, DC. Notes I made from this
> Compiled Military Service Record for the War of 1812 show:
> Peter Poythress, entry # 376, in 83 Regiment (Scott's) Virginia Militia,
> containing only one each card for a Muster Roll and a Company Pay Roll
> record, both for July 1-6, 1813 at Petersburg, VA on rolls dated 6 Jul
> 1813, indicating he was present as a Private in Capt. William H. Cousins'
> Co. of Riflemen, 83 Reg't Virginia Militia, War of 1812, and that his pay,
> at the rate of $8 per month, was $1.33 for 5 days,
> I also got a copy of his entry in the Register of Enlistment
> [Micropublication M-233, roll 10; National Archives, Washington, DC,
> "Registers of Enlistment In the U.S. Army 1798-1914, Volumes 19 & 20 (P-R),
> 1798-May 17, 1815"] (comments in square brackets below are my own):
> entry # 2835
> listing him as Pothress / Poythress, Peter
> rank: Rect. [Recruit?]
> Regiment: 20th USI[nfantry?]
> height 5'4"
> Blue eyes
> D[ar]k hair
> Lgt [Light] complexion
> age 32
> Bricklayer, occupation
> born Dinwiddie [under "Town or County"], VA
> enlisted Aug[us]t 9, 1814 at Danville, VA by Ens. Smith and Lt. Rawlins for
> period of "War"
> Remarks: "D.R.[Daily Report?] Danville, Va. Augt 1814. M.R. [Muster Roll?]
> Capt. Bern'd Peyton's Co. Oct 31 /14 , Pesent, sick. D.R. [Daily
> Report?] Feby 16, [illegible #/letter] I.R. Norfolk, Va. Mch. 15 /15 [March
> 15, 1815], Died in Reg'l Hospl [Regimental? Hospital] Feby 19 /15
> [February 19, 1815]"
See below. I intend to answer Charlotte with the Poythress family info we
have and tell her that I have posted her message on the Poythress page for
any of you to comment to either "the board" at the address above or comment
directly to her. Alternatively, she may wish to post a message to the
Poythress group herself in which case the address is the same, Charlotte.
Offhand , I'm drawing a blank on a Thomas famlly. We have plenty of Thomases
except they are and were from the first generation all Christian names.
If any of you can help Charlotte, please drop her an e-mail.
Date: Sun, 14 Jul 2002 21:19:44 EDT
I intend to answer
Subject: [VAMECKLE] RE: THOMAS FAMILY > VA
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII"
Hi, I'm hoping to find someone with info on this Thomas family. I recently
received some of the info but we aren't certain of a couple of names and are
missing the name of Winn/Wynn Thomas's wife. She maybe someone from the
Poythress family and both Thomas and Poythress families are probably from
Mecklenburg Co.. VA.
Winn/Wynn Thomas m ??
1-Tabitha Thomas m Roderick Wesson/Wilson June 2, 1814
2-Lutincy Winn Thomas m Leonard Thomas Nov. 3, 1824
3-Mary Ann Thomas m John Perkinson Dec. 12, 1825
4-Elizabeth Thomas m Harrison Wesson Dec. 13, 1824
If any one has info on this family please let me know, I'll be glad to share
what I do have, thanks.
Very interesting stuff!! I being one that is researching the "unconnected"
Poythress side of the family choose to believe the DNA research. The part
about so many different races mixed in you won't ever figure out the original
is kinda neat.... Makes this side of the family truly original!!
I guess it doesn't really matter at this point what we were then, it all
boils down to who and what we are now and how we treat those around us. I
could learn to like being Royalty???
Hope everyone had a wonderful 4th!!
I'm travelling & don't have full info about Meredith's son Peter, but I do
have the below info, summarized as [see below for details]:
Born about 1782 in Dinwiddie County, VA
Was residing in Mecklenburg Co, VA in 1800 & 1801
Was enlisted at Danville, [in Pittsylvania County] VA 9 Aug 1814
Died 19 Feb 1815 Norfolk, VA
It seems to me that, in addition to this, we've also figured out that he
was married & that his widow was named perhaps Lilly (going by memory here)
& that she got land which may have been in Arkansas -- The info about her
getting land, I think came from the (online) G.L.O., BLM records, Eastern
States Division (which, as I recall, stands for General Land Office, Bureau
of Land Management).
I have NO marriage info for him in my database, so the above
partially-recalled additional tidbit may have just been in the catagory of
"this info seems to fit with this Peter."
I don't recall ever learning of him having any descendants.
He was listed twice -- in 1800 and 1801, in the "Mecklenburg County,
Virginia Personal Property Tax Lists 1782-1805" Mecklenburg County, VA;
Family History Library film 1,854,098. [Again, going by memory here: I
think both times he was listed with Meredith, as his son, though maybe only
in 1800 with Meredith as his son, and in 1801 alone maybe?)
I've also examined Peter's "Compiled Military Service Record, War of 1812"
[which records were not yet filmed as of my review and photocopying of them
on 23 Mar 1996] National Archives, Washington, DC. Notes I made from this
Compiled Military Service Record for the War of 1812 show:
Peter Poythress, entry # 376, in 83 Regiment (Scott's) Virginia Militia,
containing only one each card for a Muster Roll and a Company Pay Roll
record, both for July 1-6, 1813 at Petersburg, VA on rolls dated 6 Jul
1813, indicating he was present as a Private in Capt. William H. Cousins'
Co. of Riflemen, 83 Reg't Virginia Militia, War of 1812, and that his pay,
at the rate of $8 per month, was $1.33 for 5 days,
I also got a copy of his entry in the Register of Enlistment
[Micropublication M-233, roll 10; National Archives, Washington, DC,
"Registers of Enlistment In the U.S. Army 1798-1914, Volumes 19 & 20 (P-R),
1798-May 17, 1815"] (comments in square brackets below are my own):
entry # 2835
listing him as Pothress / Poythress, Peter
rank: Rect. [Recruit?]
Regiment: 20th USI[nfantry?]
Lgt [Light] complexion
born Dinwiddie [under "Town or County"], VA
enlisted Aug[us]t 9, 1814 at Danville, VA by Ens. Smith and Lt. Rawlins for
period of "War"
Remarks: "D.R.[Daily Report?] Danville, Va. Augt 1814. M.R. [Muster Roll?]
Capt. Bern'd Peyton's Co. Oct 31 /14 , Pesent, sick. D.R. [Daily
Report?] Feby 16, [illegible #/letter] I.R. Norfolk, Va. Mch. 15 /15 [March
15, 1815], Died in Reg'l Hospl [Regimental? Hospital] Feby 19 /15
[February 19, 1815]"
Yes, Elaine, N.F. Poythress was one of James E. Poythress' sons. Full name
was reportedly Nathan Francis Poythress. He never married.
He was the second eldest son (& 2nd child) of James E. Poythress &
Catherine S. Preston, born 18 Oct 1830 per the family's Bible record (which
is available online at Library of Virginia, in their online Bible records,
as Accession #34866, complete with information about that record).
In the 1850 Census for the 98th Regiment area of Mecklenburg Co, VA, he was
listed (on 26 Sep 1850 by the enumerator) in his father's household as
"Nathan" age 19, occupation "laborer." (National Archives, Washington, DC,
Micropublication M432, Reel 960, sheet stamped 62, or handwirtten page
number 123, dwelling 217, family 217, James Poythress household entry). By
the way, his parents were both shown as age 45, father as Carpenter, no
real estate; his older brother, age 21, carpenter & their 16-yr old brother
was also laborer; no occupation for the younger 5 children. (ages 4-13).
See Poythress website for entire list.
The entire family moved, in a 6-wk trip in a wagon train, in about early
1863, to Sumter County, Alabama [News article, Mrs. Rebecca Lavender
(Rebecca Poythress), "Pioneer Woman of Magic City Near To Century Mark:
Celebrates Her Ninety-Fourth Anniversary With All Of Children Present,"
with her photograph, The Birmingham News, Birmingham, Alabama,Thursday 17
The following information was gleaned from "Compiled Service Records of
Confederate Soldiers Who Served in Organizations From the State of
Mississippi" (National Archives, Washington, DC, Micropublication M269,
roll 70, and Family History Library film number 1488095):
No given name was listed for him in his Compiled Service Record, he was
always shown as "N.F." N. F. Poythress was enlisted at Scooba, Mississippi
[from where they lived in Sumter County, Alabama, Scooba is just across
the AL-MS stateline, in Lauderdale County, Mississippi] on 25 March 1861 as
a Private, Company C, Jeff Davis Legion, Mississippi Cavalry.
N. F. Poythress was listed as sick in several entries. The first
indication of any sickness appears on a company muster roll for July 20 to
August 31, 1861, which shows he was absent on furlough on account of
sickness. He was subsequently present for the following muster rolls,
until the one for January and February 1862 indicates he was sent to
Warenton [sic] Hospital on January 15, 1862. [BPN notes this was probably
Warrenton, Virginia.] His name then appeared on reports of sick,
hospitalized at C. S. A. General Hospital, Charlottesville, Virginia,
admitted there on 28 February 1862 with "Catarrh" [which is a name used
back then for pneumonia-like illnesses]; he died there of "Pneumonia"
either on 10 March 1862 (according to two of the entries), or on 11 March
1862 (according to another entry), or on 4 March 1862 (according to yet
another entry). His Compiled Service Record also shows that his name
appears on a Register of Effects of Deceased Soldiers, turned over to the
Quartermasters, C. S. A., showing a certificate number 6449, in the amount
Elizabeth Roderick punted me to Virginia somebody who was a clerk in Digitial
Reproductions in charge of all decisions not in excess of 25 cents. She
walked me through the drill that we'd have to spend $25 for the first 10
copies and .50 thereafter and it would be the same if we "came" to the
library, etc. etc. Obviously, I didn't get the decision maker.
As for when they are going to microfilm the stuff, I felt sure they would
never store 30+ boxes of stuff rather than microfilming it. Virginia said
not necessarily but you can talk to Jay Gaidmore (804-692-3629) and he is in
charge of microfilming and maybe can tell you that. She was as anxious to
get rid of me as I was to get another name because she was only reading the
I'll phone Jay when I return Monday. But we are still going to have to get
to some heavy breather before we can catch a break on this one.
I'm gone to Jawja.....too early to pick cotton so I'll just eat peaches. Be
back Tuesday AM.
Have a nice week and week-end guys and gals.
Hi Bellinda.....I'm going to suggest we dance away from this topic as leading
nowhere. I wish (once again) I had never brought it up. Last trip we were
arguing race, apparently we have at least stepped up in class to "history."
Would that the Madoc legend were true. Unfortunately, the vote is virtually
unanimous that "Anthropologists have rejected these (claims) as fantastic"
per Encyclopaedia Britannica.
There are guys across the Ohio R. at the falls of the Ohio who claim even
today to have evidence Madoc even showed up here. Sort of like a 12th
century Elvis if one were cynical about it. However, it's going to take more
than a UDC marker to convince me, as sacrosanct as I view that organization
in another context.
As for the "Elizabethan" reference in the report being "an error", that
probably needs to be disregarded in today's world. For several centuries now
virtually any English not modern gets lumped under the heading
"Elizabethan"...the rule must have been something like "if you don't
understand it, it's Elizabethan."
In point of facts, post-Victorian is what they speak now, preceded by
Elizabethan in 17th century, preceded by middle English (Chaucer who is
unreadable to 99.9% of modern Americans), preceded by Old English (Beowulf,
the Domesday Book, etc.), practically a foreign language but "old English."
If Madoc did get here in the 12th century he would have spoken Welsh or one
of its myriad dialects.. At that precise point in time the Welsh would have
been long since driven west back into Wales by the invading Angles, Saxons,
Jutes and Frisians plus a few Scandinavians (meanwhile those guys all having
been more or less conquered themselves by the Normans 1066).. In fact the
very term "Welas" means foreigner, something of the utimate insult to the
"original" natives. Since no one but the Welsh understand Welsh, the
reporters could very well have believed it to be "Elizabethan English."
I'm afraid I need more proof before I pick up that snake, but for the sake of
equinamity, I'll concede there is an awful lot of smoke swirling around the
I will offer some very belated comments on Barbara Poythress Neal's
transcription of the Poythress v. Giles Bill of Chancery, Mecklenburg Co.,
Va., 1820-12. Barbara posted this transcription to us in August 2001.
First, compliments to Barbara on a careful, thorough and accurate
transcription. I have checked Barbara's transcription against my own set of
photocopies of the case and have found no differences of substance.
Second, this case shows without further doubt that John Poythress, a.k.a.
Jack Poythress, is the son of Lewis Poythress and Elizabeth Giles. Edward
Giles refers to John P. as his grandson. John P. refers to Lewis P. as
John's father. John P. refers to Edward Giles as John's grandfather.
Third, this case satisfies me that Edward Poythress is the son of Lewis
Poythress and Elizabeth Giles. Here's my argument: Edward Giles names both
John P. and Edward P. as heirs and as grandsons. From this case we know
that John P. is the son of Lewis Poythress. *IF* Edward Poythress were not
the son of Lewis Poythress and Elizabeth Giles, *THEN* Edward P.'s mother
must be another daughter of Edward Giles, and his father another Poythress.
Further, this supposed other daughter would have been deceased by the time
Edward Giles wrote his will. Our research has revealed no other
Poythress-Giles marriages and no likely prospects. On this basis, I suggest
we move forward supposing John and Edward are brothers.
Thanks to Craig Scott for fetching these documents from Richmond and thanks
to Barbara for her hours of labor to deliver us a transcription that enabled
some progress on proving our Poythress relationships.
If you want to read a full transcription of the adventures of "THE
JOURNEYS OF JAMES NEEDHAM AND GABRIEL ARTHUR IN 1673 AND 1674 THROUGH
THE PIEDMONT AND MOUNTAINS OF NORTH CAROLINA
TO ESTABLISH TRADE WITH THE CHEROKEE" go to:
This is very interesting reading, BTW, though quite long. But there's
not a word in this letter that states the strange "white" people they
found were Christian, and I could not find anything to support the
assertion that they spoke "Elizabethan English" (or any other language
that a European might understand). There are some words about
Spaniards, and a black people and village, but I cannot be fully sure of
the context to confidently repeat what I think it said. If you want to
try the authentic version use the "original letter" link.
With regard to these people being Welch, I say posh! The Welch of 1100
were the original Britons -- dark haired, dark eyes, etc. And no
Welshman who left the Islands in that time frame knew how to speak
English -- I'm not even sure that the Angles ("English") could speak it
at that time.
I think that a careful read of the letter will also reveal that the two
Englishmen who went on that exploration did not live to tell what they
saw, and that Abraham Woods was only repeating what the Indians had told
There's an intriguing mystery in all this to be sure, but I think the
few facts that have come down to us have been distorted in the
In a message dated 7/8/2002 10:27:29 AM Central Daylight Time,
> These olive- and copper-skinned people have lived in isolated pockets across
> Appalachia over the past several centuries. The Melungeons were
> in 1654 by English explorers and were described as being "dark-skinned with
> fine European features." In April of 1673, James Needham, an Englishman,
> Gabriel Arthur, possibly an indentured servant, came to the Tennessee
> as explorers with approximately eight Indians. There, Needham described
> finding "hairy people .... (who) have a bell which is six foot over which
> they ring morning and evening and at that time a great number of people
> congregrate togather and talkes" in a language not English nor any Indian
> dialect that the accompanying Indians knew. Needham also described these
> people as "hairy, white people which have long beards and whiskers and
> clothing...." who lived in log cabins with peculiar arched windows. Some of
> these peoples were also described as having red hair, and others with very
> distinctive blue or blue/green eyes. They practiced the Christian religion
> and told the explorers in broken Elizabethan English that they were
Hello, Maynard, and others discussing the Melungeon information,
This, also, has probably been discussed on the list before but the latter
people mentioned above as < Some of these peoples were also described as
having red hair, and others with very distinctive blue or blue/green eyes.
They practiced the Christian religion and told the explorers in broken
Elizabethan English that they were "Portyghee." > could quite possibly be
those descended from a combination of the Portugese explorers, Native
American Indians and another group of individuals that were of Celtic lineage
with light eyes and red/blonde and brown hair and were descendants of Prince
Madoc of Wales and those who journeyed with him as colonists on his 2nd
voyage to North America.
There is a marker that was erected in 1953 beside a road in southern Alabama
by the Virginia Cavalier chapter of the D.A.R. and that marker cites, "In
memory of Prince Madoc, a Welsh explorer, who landed on the shores of Mobile
Bay in 1170, and left behind, with the Indians, the Welsh language."
In the second paragraph, the marker mentions another source in citing:
"Authority is Encyclopedia Americana. . ." The Encyclopedia Americana says
that Madoc was a "Welsh Prince who in consequence of some civil dissensions
went to sea with ten ships and 300 men in 1170, and discovered America. He
made a second voyage to and from this unknown land but finally was lost to
the knowledge of his countrymen.. ."
There were those final few last survivors of a tribe of people called the
MANDAN Indians that after most had been wiped out by plague, battle or
assimilation into other cultures that themselves joined with the South Dakota
Sioux in the 1800s.
There is actually a good deal of information that can be found regarding the
way in which they lived with the very unique types of housing and boats that
came out of their lifestyle in Wales.
In addition to the marker in Alabama there is a commemorative marker at the
port in Bristol, England, as well, commemorating Prince Madoc's voyage to
what would become America.
Bellinda Myrick - Barnett
Last time this subject was broached it was as if someone tossed a hand
grenade in the campfire. I still say supposed Portuguese stonemasons
shipwrecked off N. C. coast showing up in the mountains couple hundred miles
N. W. and inland is not the origin of "Poythress" for those of you unaware of
the previous fist fight on the subject. And as for being a lost tribe of
Israel, I'm going to be a hard sell. Although, I will take some of their
extra hair applied to my headbone...even if molecular biologist Wayne Jones
does wimp out at the crucial moment of judgment for his "study.". Don't
shoot, I'm only the piano player. <g> Maynard
DNA Analysis Fails to Prove Melungeon Origins
Who or what are the Melungeons? If you could prove the answer to that
question, a lot of people would be interested.
The Melungeons were first discovered in 1654, living in the Appalachian
Mountain areas that are part of present-day eastern Tennessee, southwestern
Virginia, and western North Carolina. There is some evidence that the
Melungeons were established in those areas even before the Pilgrims arrived
at Plymouth Rock in 1620. Various researchers have speculated that the
Melungeons originated in Portugal or Spain or Turkey or England, or perhaps
that they were one of the Lost Tribes of Israel. So far, nobody has been able
to prove where these people came from. A just-completed genetic study of some
of their 15,000 to 50,000 modern-day descendants failed to find the ethnic
origins of these people.
These olive- and copper-skinned people have lived in isolated pockets across
Appalachia over the past several centuries. The Melungeons were "discovered"
in 1654 by English explorers and were described as being "dark-skinned with
fine European features." In April of 1673, James Needham, an Englishman, and
Gabriel Arthur, possibly an indentured servant, came to the Tennessee Valley
as explorers with approximately eight Indians. There, Needham described
finding "hairy people .... (who) have a bell which is six foot over which
they ring morning and evening and at that time a great number of people
congregrate togather and talkes" in a language not English nor any Indian
dialect that the accompanying Indians knew. Needham also described these
people as "hairy, white people which have long beards and whiskers and weares
clothing...." who lived in log cabins with peculiar arched windows. Some of
these peoples were also described as having red hair, and others with very
distinctive blue or blue/green eyes. They practiced the Christian religion
and told the explorers in broken Elizabethan English that they were
The biggest question is where did these "hairy, white people" with olive- or
copper-colored skin learn Elizabethan English? They also practiced
Christianity long before any other Christians were in the area. Also, where
did these people learn to build log cabins with arched windows when the
natives lived in tents and small huts? The Melungeons must have possessed
metal smithing skills in order to make a bell at a time when American Indians
possessed no such skills.
Many Melungeons described themselves as "Portyghee," which gave credence to
their supposed Portuguese ties. However, to the confusion of ethnologists,
many spoke Elizabethan English, and the term Melungeon may refer to a French
word for melange, or mixture. "Melungeon" also sounds exactly like an Arabic
word meaning "cursed soul," a self-deprecating term for one who feels
abandoned by God. The term was also used by 16th century Ottoman Turks and by
"Conversos," Jews and Moors who converted to Christianity around the time of
the Spanish Inquisition.
One interesting theory is that early Melungeons were Turks, possibly Ottoman
prisoners of war, who were probably taken to the New World by Sir Francis
Drake in the late 1500s. One could assume that these prisoners learned
English from their captors. That might explain the two languages that Needham
and Arthur noted. A term paper written by Mehmet Cakir, a Turkish student at
the University of Colorado, points out the many linguistic similarities
between Turkish and Melungeon languages; you can read this paper at <A HREF="http://www.colorado.edu/iec/FALL299RW/can.html">
In an attempt to trace the Melungeons' genetic origins, molecular biologist
Kevin Jones took DNA samples from 130 descendants and compared their
mitochondrial DNA, which passes intact through maternal lines, to a gene
databank. Jones' results, presented at an annual meeting of Melungeon
descendants and researchers last month, found a complex ancestry that
included European, Asian, Indian, African, and Native American blood.
"There is nothing truly definitive about this study," Jones admitted.
"Current Melungeons are so racially mixed that it will be difficult to
identify their origins. As far as I can tell, Melungeons are a self-defining
population, and not a genetically distinct population," said Jones.
"Melungeon identity is cultural. That is very real and important, not
reflected by any genetic basis, but it is still something to be quite proud
Reacting to this study, Wayne Winkler, president of the Melungeon Heritage
Association, pointed out, "One of the nice things about the DNA study is that
parts of many of these various theories are still possible." Winkler then
offered his own version of their origins and added, "The Portuguese traded
all over the world, and they had a trading outpost in India, where gypsies
originated. I've always kind of liked the fact that we have this mystery
You can read more about the Melungeons and their quest for information about
their origins at:
Melungeon Heritage Page – <A HREF="http://homepages.rootsweb.com/%7Emtnties/melungeon.html">
Melungeon Links of Interest – <A HREF="http://homepages.rootsweb.com/%7Emtnties/mlgnlinks.html">
Melungeon Heritage Association – <A HREF="http://www.geocities.com/BourbonStreet/Inn/1024">
What Is a Melungeon? – <A HREF="http://www.geocities.com/mikenassau/what.htm">http://www.geocities.com/mikenassau/what.htm</A>
The Melungeon Health Education and Support Network – <A HREF="http://www.melungeonhealth.org/">
The Melungeon information page for the American Local History Network – <A HREF="http://dmoz.org/Society/Ethnicity/Melungeon/">
SKMIE - Southeastern Kentucky Melungeon Information Exchange – <A HREF="http://www.bright.net/%7Ekat/skmie.htm">
I was looking in the Prince George County Virginia Records 1733-1792 by
Benjamin B. Weisiger III and ran across a Charles Poythress. Has anyone ever
connected him? I don't see him on the Bolling Batte Study. My first
incounter with the name Charles was Charles David Poythress, son of David
Poythress and Sally Dortch.
Quote "Case of Thomas Gibson against Drury Oliver for non payment of cost of
salivateing a negro man named Peter, belonging to the defendant, on Nov. 6,
1736 and for divers medicine, plasters, ointments, and mercurial bolus's.
Jury impanelled: Thomas Williams, William Gibbs, Peter Leath, Edward
Mitchell, Edmond Irby, Jr., John Mason, Charles Poythress, John Eppes, John
Hamlin, William Batte, John Butler, & William Crawley. Found for the
defendant. Suit dismissed & plaintiff to pay costs.
I wish I had already received my A to Zax dictionary. What in the world is
salivateing a person? Doesn't sound very hygenic but I am sure it means
something else entirely.
I was looking over the Bolling Batte Study that Nell Tims sent me a while
back and in one of the notes for John Poythress from the Present State of
Virginia For The Year 1714 Sampson Meredith and John Poythress were both
Justice's of the Peace. I know that doesn't connect our Martha Patsy Unknown
but it does link the two families indirectly. I haven't gotten to do much
research lately, had 6 Mississippians come to visit and now I am getting the
finishing touches done on the Information, I am taking to our Family Reunion
on the 19th. I am going to attack the Meredith line when I get back. I just
have this gut feeling, that is driving me crazy.
I have another post to make but will make it on a seperate email. (Different
"1807 Land Lottery Registrants of Hancock Co., GA"
By Nathan Mathews
Georgia Genealogical Society Quarterly, pp. 74-100, Vol. 38, No. 2, Summer,
Captain Coffee's District
Name/# Draws to which entitled
Elizabeth Poythress 1
Orphs. of Fras. Poythress 1
Note: There were 7 Georgia Land Lotteries. In only one lottery, the first in
1805, were the lists of registrants as well as "fortunate drawers" both
Since as a practical matter, the 1805 lottery for those eligible amounted to
a chance for "free money" (a winning ticket could be sold), the 1805 list of
lottery registrants is regarded as a fairly good proxy for an 1805 Georgia
For the other 6 (1805-1832) lotteries, contrary to the rule, a rare list of
registrants will sometimes turn up in a county courthouse. Author Mathews
has turned up such a list in the Hancock County Ordinary's office incorrectly
labeled "Tax Digest, 1806, Hancock County" and is presenting the list as
previously undocumented information.
Other than revealing to us that there were no Poythress registrants in
Hancock County in 1807 OTHER THAN the two above, serendipitously for us the
matter is irrelevant. The two Poythress entrants above were both "fortunate
drawers" and would have appeared in the 1807 public record in any case.
All of the information above, as well as detailed information on multiple
Poythress registrants and "fortunate drawers" in each lottery is contained in
an 18 page study titled "Georgia Land Lotteries and Poythress Participants"
available by request. It is digitalized and will be returned as an e-mail
attachment (with corrections or additions solicited).
Due to Rootsweb's decision to close all mailing lists the Poythress group has moved to Groups.io/g/Poythress for continuation of the discussion list. The message archive (1997 - March, 2020) will remain accessible via Rootsweb.