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I’ve just added another map segment of early deeds in Mecklenburg County Virginia.
You’ll see the location of property owned by John and David Dortch, John Speed and other surnames found connected to Poythress, Dortch and Cleaton records and more.
As a location reference point, the Dorch (Dortch) properties are near an intersection of two red lines — the North-South line is US 1 and the red line connecting from the West is US 58. This is near the old Plank Road and not too distant from Lombardy Grove — south of South Hill.
As mentioned before, I’m still working on how best to extract more of value from these deep maps.
This is a larger map section, so you’ll be able to see the location of Cleaton, Lark, Taylor and others.
These pages will continue to evolve.
Hi Earl Poythress (great-grandson of James Speed Poythress, father of your
grandfather James David Poythress),
In this response to your email (which is at the bottom here), I'm copying
our Poythress researchers' email-subscription List, since I gather you,
too, MAY be a subscriber. I hope so. It is thru pooling our questions &
answers that folk make progress. I hope you'll please break the cycle of
waiting too long to follow up on tips others have given you thru the
decades. If you have not yet (since my January 2018 recommendations to you)
done so, I strongly encourage you to:
(1) subscribe to the Poythress-List , please if you haven't already; and
(2) consult all the robust sources of material beneath the numerous tabs
at our Poythress Surname History website, https://poythress.org/
As I think I mentioned earlier this year when you, Earl, last emailed me:
Al Tims, our Poythress site webmaster (who is not a personal genealogist
for hire) spends much effort as webmaster, locating & making available on
the site, information on various POYTHRESS lines for each of us to consult.
The remainder of this email from me is covering BOOKs by Betty Lawrence of
Meridian, MS (who is mentioned in Earl's below-email) in an effort to have
available online and potentially-findable, her name and her books. (Just
now I checked the familysearch.org site for the Family History Library
Catalog, and failed to find Betty listed as an author there; hopefully her
books are available somewhere, perhaps at the NSDAR Library in Washington,
DC, and/or in Meridian, MS).
Betty's BOOK covering Poythress genealogy is what gave me a great boost
when I first began working on Poythress genealogy decades ago. It was
self-published in 1978 in Meridian, MS by Betty Lawrence [She was a member
of DAR, Colonial Dames, the Daughters of the Confederacy, etc; her husband,
chiropractor Dr. Tom Lawrence who you mentioned in your below email, Earl,
was also active genealogically in the local chapter of the Sons of the
Betty Lawrence's full maiden name was Clara Elizabeth Peel. Betty
Lawrence's 1978 book covering Poythress & other lines, originally was a
light-blue 3-ring binder of loose-leaf typed-mimeographed-pages, with a
long title: "The Families of William Gilbert, Sr. and Susannah McDaniel, &
James Edward Poythress and Catherine Smith [sic] Preston, & Related
Families: Lavender, McKinley, Pinson, Peel, Bennett." (no index)
Betty's "Revised August 1993" copyright version of the above book was an
updated computer-typed version of the above book; that revision was
published the same month she died, still with no index. She lived 1914 to
1993. It was then available from her husband, Dr Tom Lawrence, who was
then-dba (doing business as) Mount Barton Publishers, Meridian, MS. The
book's then-title was: "Giles and Joan (Pearce) Gilbert, Sr. & James Edward
and Catherine Smith [sic] (Preston) Poythress & Descendants & Related
Families: Bennett, Lavender, McDaniel, McKinley, Peel, Pinson"
Dr Tom Lawrence died at 87 in June 2005; their son who then-lived in
Houston TX was their only child listed in Dr Tom's obit in the mid-Sept
2005 issue of "Dynamic Chiropractic" (which I saw thanks to a 2012 google
In 2012 I mailed a letter to the name and Houston address found online
which appeared to be their son, Thomas Eugene Lawrence, JD, expressing the
hope that Betty's books would be made more widely available to genealogical
audiences, whether in print form or posted digitally at a website, where
PDF versions are more easily searchable and do not require indexing to be
highly useful. Sadly I got no response even though I enclosed a
self-addressed stamped envelope so I could be advised whether or not I'd
reached the correct person.
Betty Lawrence also published these below books. I presume (but I do not
know for sure) that all were copyright; that none were indexed; and that
all were published as 3-hole-punched sheets, as was the above one:
[Note: the first name of the title of this first-below book, Richard
Bracewell, was apparently the London England ancestor of the line(s) in the
- Richard Bracewell, Gentleman, and Robert and Mary Peele & Their
Descendants & Related Families: Brasswell, Bryant, Burgess, Carver, Cotton,
Dearman, DeLoach, Dew, Gilbert, Gilliam, Guinn, Hill, McDaniel, McKinley,
Mercer, Peel, Permenter, Pigford, Pinson, Poythress, Loyd, Robbins,
Sampson, Snow, Stiles, Taylor, Wedgworth, West and Wood. With an Addendum
by Horace Peele 1995 rev ed.
- Robert and Elizabeth McKinley & Descendants & Related Families: Bishop,
Dearman, Gilliam, Lunsford, Lyon, McElroy
- History of Sumter County, Alabama [this was a compilation of photocopied
- A History of Lauderdale Springs, MS [it is possible this is also a
compilation of articles]
On Fri, Oct 11, 2019 at 11:16 AM epoythress <epoythress(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> Just wanted to tell you of my latest escapade with continuing to chase all
> available sources. I lived in the Poythress "Big House"across the street
> from Edna Lawrence and spent a lot of time with her. On several occasions
> she told me that Betty Lawrence, Tom's wife, was working on the Poythress
> Genealogy and I should talk to her. Never did.
> After finishing college I took a job in Richmond, Virginia and one of my
> pipeline projects ran from Richmond to Norfolk and spent a lot of time in
> Williamsburg, William and Mary and Richmond gathering all of the
> information about the early Poythresses.
> On one of my last trips down the Williamsburg, I recorded every page that
> mentioned the name with the intention of going back to read each one. Well
> I got back on track in Midland, Texas and sent letters to every Poythress
> listed in phone books asking for any information on their family history.
> Got all kinds of responses and I sat on them. When I moved to Atlanta and
> began to continue my work, David Poythress suggested that I talk to his
> brother, Maynard, about his searches. That got me back into the work and we
> swapped emails often until he died. His daughter, Leigh told me that she
> was given all of his work on the Poythress history and you know that she
> donated it all.
> Since I have nothing to do these days, I remembered my neighbor, Edna's
> conversation about Betty's work on the Poythress Genealogy. Before she died
> she gave her work to Tom. I started to locate Elbert and Elaine, Edna's
> children to help me find the children of Tom and Betty. Both had died. I
> don't know why, but I always thought that we were relatives. Tom Lawrence,
> Jr. was a Judge in Houston,Texas and I planned to contact him this week.
> That's when your name came up in my search and that you might have been
> able to retrieve Betty's Genealogical study. That took care of my effort to
> get the same information.
> One of my Meridian cousins that lives in Quitman, Ms called me about the
> Poythress family history and he wanted to send it to me after he made
> copies. Still waiting.
> I don't know much about Albert Tims' searches. After giving him copies of
> a great portion of my work to review, last week I sent him the list of deed
> books and pages recorded in the Virginia Court Houses and the William and
> Mary College Quarterlies.
> I guess that I have rambled along and forgot to mention that the whole
> purpose for me writing you was about Betty Lawrence's studies and I can
> stop that portion of my search. I noticed that you mentioned Judy Scruggs
> help with your work. She lived in the "Big House" too. That was the Jim
> Poythress home and our Grandfather that took care of most of his children.
> There were five children living there.
> Earl Poythress
Below is a new compilation of documents related to Peter Poythress and his wife, Lilly Poythress. The summary compilation is based on a message thread between Barbara Poythress Neal and others on this list dating back to 2002.
Peter was born in Dinwiddie, lived and owned property in Mecklenburg County, VA, was the son of Meredith Poythress, may have spent some time in Georgia prior to the War of 1812.
His widow (heir) was awarded 160 acres in Arkansas for his service.
I have an image of the original warrant and a very interesting and beautifully preserved survey map showing the location of the property and the names of all neighboring grant holders. I don’t know if these grants were awarded so that those who served together would be in the same community. The Poythress land is in the 4th row from the bottom — near the middle.
I have this posted under the deeds primary records section on the website but may move some of the content to the Family Studies if we’re able to further document this individual and his family.
I suspect some of you may have additional information we could add so we can share a more comprehensive understanding of this Peter Poythress and his immediate family.
I’ve posted a map segment for Dinwiddie County, VA showing the locations of deeds, patents and property transfers documented in the Deed Data Pool.
There are all sorts of disclaimers we’d need to include and caveats about the limitations on the scope of the properties loaded into the database. Consider this a draft/preliminary visualization tool. You’ll likely need to use the zoom feature if you wish to view these property locations. Think of this as a research aid that might help us develop new insights about allied families and the proximities of the Poythress families.
I now know that the Butterwood Methodist Church (established in the 1760s) in Dinwiddie County was likely on land owned by Francis Poythress. This is one of the churches where Devereux Jarratt (rector for Bath Parish) and Rev. Francis Poythress held services. More on this to come, I hope…
This segment does not show all of the Poythress property in Dinwiddie County or all of the allied family names of possible interest or family tie.
I hope this will yield some “ah-ha” moments for a few of us.
Please does anyone have either/both of the following marriages they
could share? This is relevant to research on the ancestry of Nancy
Thomas of Mecklenburg County, VA, mother-in-law of Thomas M. Poythress
and grandmother of William L. Poythress and others. Specifically I am
seeking evidence/citations of the parents of Laban House.
Laban House and Elizabeth Barnes, 1841, Brunswick County, VA, cited on
familysearch.org as "Virginia Marriages, 1785-1940," database,
FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XRQF-T21 : 11
February 2018), Laban House and Elizabeth Barnes, 11 Dec 1841; citing
Brunswick, Virginia, reference ; FHL microfilm 30,659.
Laban House and Nancy Ann Caroline Black, 1856, Bastrop County, TX,
cited on familysearch.org as "Texas Marriages, 1837-1973," database,
FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:FX3Z-6YS : 11
February 2018), Labem House and N. A. C. Black, 23 Sep 1856; citing ,
Bastrop, Texas, , reference 2:2DCJZQR; FHL microfilm 965,226.
I understand I can get these at a family history center, however for me
those are a bit of an adventure to access, so I am checking whether
someone out there on the list might already have this to share. In any
event thanks for checking. --Lyn
We have recently acquired the latest version of the DeedMapper software and a number of the Virginia county maps and placements available from the Deed Data Pool.
I’m still learning how to use the software and am not yet ready to add new property but there are enough Poythress and allied family properties in the datasets for us to begin to “map” communities.
I’m attaching a link to a map section from current Mecklenburg County, VA (Lunenburg at the time of the patent) showing a 400 acre patent to William Cleaton - on the head of Miles’s Creek and Great Creek.
The vertical line to the right is the current boundary with Brunswick County.
Below is one of the reasons this is of interest — note that you’ll see property boundaries for several of the men mentioned in this transcription. And notably, a William Poythress as a witness.
Abstract of this Deed from Mecklenburg Co, VA Deed Book 3, p.553, re-transcribed here by Bpn from TLC Genealogy's 1991 volume of Mecklenburg Co, VA Deeds 1771-1776 (Deed Books 3 & 4; note TLC uses "M" as an abbreviation for "Mecklenburg"): Mar 8, 1773 from Henry Langford of M, to James Hargrove of M, for 10 £, 200 acres in M bounded on the west by the east fork of the Great Cr, on the north side by William Claeton Sr [Cleaton], on the east side by John Nipper, it being part of the land where Langford lives. Signed - Henry (L his mark) Langford. Wit - Lewis Parham, Isham Malone, William Poythress. Recorded Mar 8, 1773.
We have a couple Dortch properties due west — roughly where US1 and US58. As a side bar, not far away is property owned by Field Jefferson — Thomas Jefferson’s uncle;).
I’m pleased to share that we’ve added and are on the cusp of adding important resources to the Poythress website.
Those of you who’ve been following closely know that Lyn Baird has contributed previously unavailable records of the Methodist congregations in and near Mecklenburg County, VA. These records are treasures for everyone interested in the families and communities in 19th century Southside Virginia. We’re fortunate to be the repository.
We’ve yet to connect these congregations to the pioneering missionary work of Rev. Francis Poythress but in time I think we may.
And we’re equally fortunate that Julie Cabitto shares so generously her discoveries and her ongoing work mapping the land holdings of Poythress and allied families, as well as the small family cemeteries in Mecklenburg County, VA.
Her most recent contribution is a transcription of an 1818 Will of Thomas Cleaton that place his lands adjacent to Poythress, Giles and other allied families. And it informs us so much more about the lives of these families.
Lyn and Julie have been contributors to the quest for more than two decades and deserve more thanks than we can ever offer; but their legacies will be of seminal importance in the decades to come as our descendants explore their roots in America.
Not burying the lead here, I’m pleased to share that Barbara Poythress Neal, who along with Maynard Poythress, first prompted me to establish the Poythress mailing list nearly a quarter of century ago — before Rootsweb took over and back when these sorts of mailing lists were still being hosted at Indiana University. Unfortunately, some of the earliest posts have been lost to the transition. Needless to say for those of you who’ve hung in there with us over the years, is that Barbara is serious about doing genealogy as rigorously as possible so that what we share is not speculation but documented evidence. Her influence and contributions are unmatched.
She recently shared with me a trove of documents, a number of which were posted to the list over the years but never placed in context or moved to the website where they could be organized for research. In the coming weeks and months I’m going to be adding these documents to the website and every time I add a new document I plan to post to this list what has been added and invite corrections, commentary and discussion. My hope is that more of us will look for opportunities to make incremental contributions — family photos, gravesites, bibles, family oral histories, transcriptions, etc.
Below is the first of the documents contributed by BPN. This document is as rich as they come in terms of what it tells us about life in Georgia and Florida in the mid-19th century and about this branch of the Poythress family.
Equity suit of John C. Poythress vs Cheesborough, Mary E et. al., Burke Co, Georgia, 1848
Transcribed by Barbara Poythress Neal from photocopies from Family History Library microfilm # 222,856 - Burke County, Georgia Equity Records 1834-1852,
pages 77-87 covering equity suit of John C. Poythress vs Cheesborough, Mary E et al
In addition, Mike Tutor has been helping me on several fronts and is revisiting some of his earlier contributions — I hope to be sharing his new work soon.
In closing, I want to mention that the Poythress.org <http://poythress.org/> site has been ungraded to provide full encryption and to use a dedicated IP address — these changes make the information on the site much more secure and use of the site much more secure. There are no cookies or trackers or personal information collected — visitors can be confident that use of the website is as safe as possible today.
I found Oliver Dortch living in the household of a known son of David E. Poythress when I did a Census Project for our website many years ago
1870 Warren County NC
H. H. 35 , Nutbush Twp., pg. 520
Poythress Chas dry goods merchant age 20, born VA
Dortch, Oliver, dry goods clerk age 26, born VA
1870 Warren County, NC
H.H. 26 Smith Creek Twp. pg. 640
Poythress/Delir/Known to be David E. Poythress
" " Sarah, wife, age 45, born VA
" " Lucie, daughter, age 16, born VA
" " Alice, daughter, age 12 born VA
Sincerely,Elaine Poythress Criddle
Thank you Mike! I did not have John Poythress. I might need to try
footnotes in the chart, to notate where we got the pieces of info. No, not
all children left VA. Thomas M. Poythress married Lucy Thomas & stayed in
Mecklenburg. Also buried there. Sarah Poythress married William Archer
Dortch. Their son Alvy Dortch (my family) stayed in Mecklenburg until 1900.
Their son Oliver Jasper Dortch moved to Warren, NC abt 1870, probably
living close to David Poythress, in Nutbush. Something I want to find out.
I plan to visit Warren soon to look into that.
On Tue, May 14, 2019 at 4:08 AM <poythress-request(a)rootsweb.com> wrote:
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> Today's Topics:
> 1. request feedback Lewis Poythress children-VA (Mike Tutor)
> Date: Mon, 13 May 2019 11:47:16 -0400
> From: Mike Tutor <nmw2016(a)hughes.net>
> Subject: [POYTHRESS] request feedback Lewis Poythress children-VA
> To: Poythress Surname Mailing List <poythress(a)rootsweb.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
> Hi Julie,
> I do not have all of my Poythress information in front of me but I do have
> a chart from years ago. Let me know if you have disproven any of it. I did
> change the dates for Lewis Y.'s birth & death to what you have and I
> changed the birth for Thomas to what you have. I showed eight children for
> Lewis Poythress. I have wondered what the status was as to whether the
> documents had confirmed them all as his children or whether the
> preponderance of the evidence had concluded that they were all his
> Lewis Poythress (c.1770-bef. 1850)
> m(1) Elizabeth Patsy Giles (c. 1773-bef. 1802)
> 1. Edward Poythress (c. 1798-aft. 1860) 2. John Poythress (c. 1800-1818)
> m(2) Rebecca B. Taylor (c. 1780-aft. 1845)
> 3. James Edward Poythress (1803-1863)
> 4. David Poythress (1805-1876)
> 5. Rebecca L. Poythress (1809-1861)
> 6. Lewis Y. Poythress (1813-1874)
> 7. Sarah G. Poythress (1814-1854)
> 8. Thomas M. Poythress (1815-1891)
> When Lewis Poythress' father, Thomas Poythress, moved to Georgia, didn't
> all of Lewis Poythress' brothers leave Virginia?
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Julie Cabitto" <julie.cabitto(a)gmail.com>
> To: poythress(a)rootsweb.com
> Sent: Sunday, May 12, 2019 7:51:51 PM
> Subject: [POYTHRESS] request feedback Lewis Poythress children-VA
> Hi Poythress researchers,
> I didn't realize that there are more of Lewis Poythress children still in
> theory, but not confirmed on paper yet, besides my Sarah Poythress. I read
> a few list emails from the last month that made me wonder. I live in VA, &
> my research is half Virginia focused, concentrated in Mecklenburg &
> Brunswick. My Poythress research for years is mostly around trying to
> family links of Lewis Poythress in Mecklenburg. I make visual charts to
> help me. I will thoroughly be reviewing the website this month with
> to Lewis. In the meantime, this is what I have. Do any of you know
> differently? I only know for sure Lewis Y & Thomas Poythress are confirmed
> children of Lewis because of Mecklenburg VA deed book 31, pg 605. Is there
> paper proof of any other children? In brief summary:
> Lewis Poythress (1760 to 1846-1848)
> 1st Marriage: Elizabeth Patsey Giles (1732 to bef 1802)
> child 1: Edward Poythress (1798 to ?)
> child 2: David Poythress (1800-1876)
> 2nd marriage to Rebecca Taylor (abt 1781 to abt 1852)
> child 3: James Edward Poythress (1803-1863)
> child 4: Rebecca L. Poythress (1809-1861)
> *child 5: Lewis Y. Poythress (1813-1874) ***CONFIRMED LINK: FROM DEED
> *child 6: Thomas M. Poythress (1815 to 1891) ***CONFIRMED LINK: FROM
> child 7: Sarah G. Poythress (1816-1853)
> Are there any other people who could in theory be children of Lewis that I
> am missing? If this matches what you all have & know, Ill get started on a
> chart. I'm happy to share it & I can revise it as I learn more. My hope is
> my collaborative work with the land & trying to get GPS pins for my map of
> where they actually lived, will help us find some more paper proof.
> *Julie Cabitto*
> *Snail mail: **PO Box 9143, Fredericksburg VA 22403, USA*
> *Julie's Mecklenburg,VA Gen map: * link "click here"
> *My Virginia Gen blog*:
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