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This monograph from 2017 is included a detailed account of Rev. Francis Poythress and family in Kentucky related to his role in the Methodist Church and the founding of this school. It includes information about his sister’s estate, his niece and other details I have not previously encountered and certainly not compiled so thoroughly. This is a fascinating monograph because it places the project in context and involves an archaeological survey of the land and artifacts discovered on the site. I found 117 mentions of Francis Poythress in addition to mentions of his niece and a detailed biography of her husband and associate of Rev. Poythress — John Metcalf (described as from a well-to-do Virginia family).
note: The file may be a bit slow to download but once it loads it can be saved as a PDF file.
Thanks Julie & Al re your today posts. It reminded me when I saw Julie's
mention of Patents & each of you mentioning "to the NC line" -- so I'll
mention these 2 brief comments (all I currently have time for) for the
benefit of those who never knew these things, and those who have forgotten:
There was major Colonial-era disputing re which map "parallel"
[latitude] was correct for dividing VA from NC. I forget how many decades
it went on before it was resolved, by it being either farther north or
farther south (I can't now recall which) than many people believed/wanted.
It affected where many people had long lived.
ALSO - the VA Patents' transcriptions are at our website thanks to Al's
great work, posted under Primary Records.
On Saturday I was at a LVA (Library of Virginia) event. The keynote showed
some fascinating colonial records available in LVA, and all the new
documentation discovered of the earliest African slaves in Virginia. In the
year 1619! New discoveries about DNA, and mixed race marriages back in
colonial days, where exactly the first slaves came from...so many amazing
things...To see the images of these records projected on a large screen was
really fun for me. One thing in particular really stunned me so I wanted to
send a note here to the list. I know & understand about county formations,
and when they were formed. But I didn't realize till this event: I had only
seen maps of Virginia after Virginia became the United States. They showed
a map I'd never seen anything like it before, during British rule when
there were only "5 shires", drawn way differently in 1680 than any other
early VA map I've seen . While showing the map, they explained that every
year, the landowners had to go to Jamestown & report every person on their
property, who they were responsible for. The lists were recorded by shire.
I saw long lists in the 1680s that listed people by name, not a number.
Also notated their status, servant, indentured, slave etc. The lecturer
also went on to explain the list of "people of quality". When I hear that
term, I think of British nobility. But, it was total opposite in the
colonies. They showed a list about "people of Quality" with the fine print
underneath explaining the term actually meant: your poor, prisoners,
orphans, indentured, slaves, servants, ....Also, the earliest blacks (or
people of color) whether free or slave had Spanish names, they were
Catholic while in Africa. Then they changed their names to be English so
they could be Church of England during British rule. I thought these things
can make a big difference when researching a person. Back to the 5 shires.
The map showed narrow angled lines, going out of Jamestown, like 5
trapezoids drawn out from Jamestown. Charles City in colonial days also
included Brunswick, Mecklenburg & Lunenburg County. Possibly Surry &
Dinwiddie. I'd have to look at the map more. It went from Jamestown, 2
straight angles southwest, to the NC/VA state border. That map is making me
rethink where I thought some of the really early Poythress lived. It seemed
reasonable that some people lived in Surry then 20 years later moved to
Brunswick with a new patent, as there were people migrating that path at
that time. But our Poythress might not have moved after all.
There's a term I can't remember. I know it happened in New Orleans, when
the places in the Louisiana Purchase became the US, people went to prove
their claims, that their family owned the land before the United States
came, so the land stayed in their name. I don't remember exactly what
happened with Virginia. But I'm thinking this is what patents were. I'm
thinking that patent was the term of land transferring from being land of
the crown to now privately held. If I got any of that wrong, please set me
straight. With Lewis Poythress being born about 1760, that was happening
while he was a teenager. So, Lewis Poythress father & grandfather could
have a land patent that said Charles City, & really be right where Lewis
had land in 1840. For my own curiosity, I'm going to have to start
reviewing land entries on the Poythress site, looking at patents listed,
looking for any water ways mentioned. I also need to learn what the
waterways were called before mecklenburg & Brunswick became counties. I
just looked to see if LVA had that map online to send you a link but they
do not. Every colonial record I saw in presentations this weekend, I'd
never heard about before & neither had anyone around me. So, I think there
are lots of newly available colonial records indexed & now available at lVA
that might help us with our earlier Poythress. I'll let you know when I
spot anything Poythress.
I continue to try to pull together what we can establish that would lead to establishing the family background of Rev. Francis Poythress.
I think what we have below might provide an incremental advancement and clues about where to dig deeper. I’m posting these working notes with the hope that some of you may have insights, additional or contradictory information or helpful advice about how we could bring all of this into a credible study of this Francis Poythress and family.
This journal article is where I’ll start — as a follow-up to the earlier note today about the 1796 will of Francis Poythress.
The Petersons, Claibornes, and Harrisons, and Some of Their Connections
The William and Mary Quarterly
Vol. 2, No. 1 (Jan., 1922), pp. 1-19
Published by: Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture
Page Count: 19
This journal article is a family history provided by Elizabeth Claiborne Peterson, a granddaughter of John Herbert Peterson. John H. Peterson is the author — he was the son of Thomas Peterson and Elizabeth Claiborne — born circa 1777 — which means he was a contemporary of many in this account. The account shared by his granddaughter with the WMQ was written in 1829.
John H. Peterson’s father was Thomas Peterson (died 1788, married Elizabeth Claiborne). His brother married Sarah Epes, daughter of Col. Peter Epes. More immediately significant for us is that his grandfather John Peterson (died 1773; married Martha Thweatt) had three sons and three daughters. The daughters were named Martha, Mary and Frances.
Martha married Robert Batte of Prince George County. Mary married FRANCES POYTHRESS. This account states that Francis and Mary had a son named Francis who was a horseman during the Rev. War under Capt. William Parsons. The account states that their son Francis died in Virginia soon after the war having never married. Their second child is identified as Mary who married a Mr. Randolph of Amelia County, VA.
This most certainly is the Mary Peterson (Poythress) Randolph mentioned in the 1796 will of Francis Poythress.
And the following may suggest why the 1796 will was unusual:
In the Reverend Mr. Slaughter’s History of Bristol Parish (p. 206) there is this record:
“Mary, daughter of Francis Poythress and Mary Peterson, married Randolph of Amelia County.”
According to family tradition, his wife was commonly called Polly Peterson Poythress and in her stockings she knitted her initials “P.P.P.”
She had been reared in the family of the Rev. Devereux Jarratt and she was about 13 years of age when she married, her fiancee being about 10 years her elder.
She was quite wealthy as wealth was estimated at that time, owning 160 slaves, 80 of which she had inherited from her brother on his death unmarried (p. 81).”
Randolph, W. (1952). Henry Randolph I, 1623-1773 [sic] of Henrico County, Virginia, and his descendants: Preceded by short review of the Randolph family in early England and elsewhere. Memphis: Distributed by Cossitt Library.
We know that Rev. Poythress was likely studying with Rev. Jarratt prior to his official engagement as a Methodist minister — prior to 1775. If true then It is plausible/probable that both Polly and Francis (perhaps Mary too) were in the Jarratt household or in some proximity during the late 1760s. Rev. Jarratt had a plantation of more than 700 acres, likely property belonging to his far more wealthy wife, Martha (Ravenscroft) Claiborne.
At this point we can establish an earlier Poythress connection to the Claiborne family and Rev. Jarratt by extension.
BURNELL CLAIBORNE (Leonard’, Thomas’, William’) married, after Sept. 1738,’ Hannah (Ravenscroft) Poythress widow of Francis Poythress and undoubtedly daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth (Hamlin) Ravenscroft of “Maycox: Prince George County.”
Rev. Devereux Jarratt married Martha Claiborne — daughter of Burnell & Hanna (Ravenscroft) [Widow of Francis Poythress (1707 – 1738] Claiborne.
[Hanna Ravenscroft – widow of Francis Poythress] was Rev. Devereux Jarratt’s mother-in-law. The significance of having Mary (Polly) Peterson Poythress (Randolph) and Rev. Francis Poythress linked to Rev. Jarratt’s family needs further study.
It might well be that Martha Claiborne was helping raise the daughter of Francis and Mary — our Poly Peterson Poythress — given that Francis is reported to have squandered much of his inheritance in a misspent youth and then found his calling under the guidance of Rev. Jarratt. The historical accounts document the extent to which Rev. Francis Poythress was away for extended periods, often hundreds of miles from Virginia. It seems reasonable that he and his wife, Mary, might not have had a traditional household and that she and her daughter might have lived with her mother’s relatives. Perhaps…
We have now added the will of Francis Poythress, Dinwiddie County, VA 1796 to the Poythress.org <http://poythress.org/> site.
This is a rather unusual will in that it seems mostly limited to establishing that "my wife and her Heirs should enjoy all the Estate that came by her without the hindrance or molestation of my Heirs.”
I’m not sure who might be his heirs versus her heirs but my supposition is that he and his wife may have been trying to protect her (or their) assets from claims that could have arisen if he had died intestate or with a marriage agreement (mentioned but not documented) that may have had unspecified defects.
The only person mentioned (other than “my wife”) is daughter Mary Peterson Randolph. We have reason to believe she was called Polly.
Michael Tutor did a very deep dive into this Francis Poythress in a post to this list back in 2006. It is well worth revisiting his theory that this may have been Rev. Francis Poythress. I have often presumed he was a bachelor due to his itinerate lifestyle as a circuit riding preacher and the absence of any mention of a family in the historical accounts of his work and the fact that he was living with his sister in Kentucky later it life. If the thesis below holds promise then we may develop a more focused study of his sister Susannah.
I would add that that theory may be reinforced a bit further by this account I shared back in 2007
List, My recent post closed with a question about the relationship between Poythress family and Rev. Devereux Jarratt of Bath Parish. In the Reverend Mr. Slaughter’s History of Bristol Parish (p. 206) there is this record: “Mary, daughter of Francis Poythress and Mary Peterson, married Randolph of Amelia County.” Neither the date nor the place of their marriage is given but it is certain that the marriage of Henry Randolph V is here referred to.6 According to family tradition, his wife was commonly called Polly Peterson Poythress and in her stockings she knitted her initials “P.P.P.” She had been reared in the family of the Rev. Devereux Jarratt. If this [Randolph] family tradition is an accurate account, why would Mary (Polly) Peterson Poythress (born 1763) to Francis Poythress and Mary Peterson be reared in the family of Rev. Devereux? And if true, how might this connect with the known relationship to the education of Rev. Francis Poythress? Reviewing this and related earlier posts to the Poythress list along with preliminary explorations of a few other sources I came to see that a potentially important clue was right under my nose: From Claiborne of Virginia: descendants of Colonel William Claiborne: the first eight generations. John Dorman & Claiborne Smith, Gateway Press, 1995. BURNELL CLAIBORNE (Leonard’, Thomas’, William’) married, after Sept. 1738,’ Hannah (Ravenscroft) Poythress widow of Francis Poythress and undoubtedly daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth (Hamlin) Ravenscroft of "Maycox.· Prince George County.” Rev. Devereux Jarratt married Martha Claiborne — daughter of Burnell & Hanna Claiborne. The reports I’ve read so far seem to indicate that he left the management of their plantation to Martha. All of this needs to be documented but if proven true it would mean that the widow of Francis Poythress (1707-1738) [Hanna] was Rev. Devereux Jarratt’s mother-in-law the we may have a new insight into the basis for apparent ties to Mary (Polly) Peterson Poythress (Randolph) and Rev. Francis Poythress.
We’ve added another of Barbara Poythress Neal’s important and very carefully documented transcriptions to the Poythress.org <http://poythress.org/> site.
This deed is an important for several reasons, not the least of which is that it places Charles Poythress as a land owner in North Carolinaby the mid-1750s — a location just across the river and immediately to the south of what became Mecklenburg County, VA.
Note: Warren County was formerly Bute County and before that was part of Granville County. Also note, that we later see Charles Poythress selling what appears to be the same land to William Cryer about 20 years later.
Here’s a bit more about why the Cryer family might be worth more study. First, recall we recently added the will for Mary Poythress (1772) with John Cryer as first among her witnesses. Mary was married to Edward Poythress and mother of Tabitha Poythress. To the best of my knowledge, we do not have a maiden name for this Mary Poythress. We also have an Elizabeth Poythress, not described as a daughter, serving as a witness to this will.
And we have a number of other Cryer-Poythress property-related connections:
URL (Click on link) http://image.lva.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/GetLONN.pl?first=431&last=&g_p=P17&... <http://image.lva.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/GetLONN.pl?first=431&last=&g_p=P17&...> ; Patent ;
Author Cryer, William. grantee.
Title Land grant 2 January 1737.Summary Location: Prince George County.
Summary Description: 700 acres in Prince George and Amelia Counties on both sides of Tommahitton Swamp, adjoining Joseph Poythress.
Summary Source: Land Office Patents No. 17, 1735-1738, p. 431 (Reel 15).
Summary Part of the index to the recorded copies of patents for land issued by the Secretary of the Colony serving as the colonial Land Office. The collection is housed in the Archives at the Library of Virginia.
Other Format Available on microfilm. Virginia State Land Office. Patents 1-42, reels 1-41.
Subject – Personal Cryer, William. grantee.
Subject – Personal Poythress, Joseph.
And we have this from the Amelia County Deed Book again showing William Cryer owning land adjacent to Joseph Poythress.
Amelia County Deed Book 8, pg. 326
April 23, 1764 from William Cryer Sr. of Dinwiddie County, to William Cryer Jr. of A, for 5 shillings and for other good causes, all that tract of land of about 570 acres on the south side of Tommahitton Swamp in A, and bounded by John York…..Joseph Poythress. Recorded April 26, 1764.
And this from a compilation developed by Michael Tutor:
Hughes section of the book for the Dinwiddie Co, VA Surveyor's Platt Book 1755-1865, with page numbers as in the Platt Book
-- p.4: 18 April 1753, John Williams 38 ac[res] both sides of Reedy Br[anch] adj[oining] William POYTHRESS, William Cryer, Samuel Gordon, & Edward POYTHRESS. This certiﬁcate was afterwards altered to the name of Zacharias Fenn.
The record above places both Edward (husband of Mary mentioned above) and William Poythress as immediate neighboring landowners to William Cryer. We see a William Cryer adjoining Jospeh Poythress several decades earlier. Same lands?
We also have this from a WPA survey of a small family cemetery in the area. The record can be accessed by following the link shown below. The transcriptions of interest are:
Here Lyes the
Corpse of Mary Poythress
Daughter of Capt. William Eppes
And wife to William Porthress Junr.
Who Dyed The 4th of October
1750 - Age 19 years.
Here lies the Mortal remains
John, William & Robert Cryer
three brothers who were born in the County of Prince George some
time before the American Revolution
This is testimonial of affection and
gratitude is placed to their memory
by their nephew Robert Cryer Booth
(Note: No mention of a date when the Cryer memorial may have been placed)
Author Powell, Bettie B.
Title survey report, Bothwell Cemetery : 1936 Apr. 15 / research made by Bettie B. Powell.
Material 6 leaves.
Gen. note Map location number: DIN352
Gen. note Class: Cemetery
Gen. note Date: 1750
Gen. note Location: 2 miles south of Ford, Virginia on Route 613.
Gen. note Cemetery includes the following family names: Blandy, Booth, Cabaniss, Cryer, Moon, Poythress
The cemetery is on private land and is not documented anywhere other than this WPA description from the 1930s. Find A Grave has the WPA transcription but no location and no photographs.
I think with a little more digging we’ll find even more evidence of longstanding family interactions and perhaps evidence of more.
It is also of interest that we see connections over time with the Hawkins family — from whom Charles purchased the North Carolina property. I developed a working document a little while back to begin to pull together what we might be able to establish about a web of family connections linking descendants of John Hawkins to David Poythress — who moved his family from Mecklenburg County, VA to Warren County, NC in the 1850s.
I remain hopeful that by mapping (literally) and otherwise documenting how these connections unfolded over time that we may get closer to sorting out how and from what origins we find Poythress generations in Mecklenburg. It may well be that some of the early land grants were for lands that were in what became part of Mecklenburg County and that we simply don’t have records of inheritance from father to son since no new deed may have been required. This certainly seems to have been the case for land in Brunswick County sold and taxed to Thomas Poythress that appear to be the same land granted to John Poythress in the 1720s and 1730s.
With thanks to Elaine, who gently let me know that I miscounted her Daddy's
place in his family: "Daddy was the youngest of 7 children. His brother
Francis Asbury Poythress passed at the age of 5, many years before Daddy
was born. He is buried beside my grandaddy Carl's brother Richard High
Poythress in Meridian."
(Double-checking my notes today, in 2002 I'd indicated that David
said this brother died of strep throat. They are buried in Meridian's
Magnolia Cemetery, where his marker has the dates he lived, dying in early
1931, long before availability of penicillin. I note that child's name is a
clear reflection of the family's Methodist heritage, consistent with other
extended family that moved to the Alabama & Mississippi area from
We have added the detailed transcription of nine documents comprising the Brunswick County, Virginia Chancery Court record #1796-017 Thomas Poythress to the Poythress.org <http://poythress.org/> website. The transcriptions were done by Barbara Poythress Neal and posted to the Poythress mailing list in 2002 in four parts. These records detail disputes involving the sale of land by Thomas Poythress and may reveal circumstances related to his removal to Georgia during this time period.
Interesting sidebar: There is mention in one document stating that Thomas Poythress had removed “long ago” to a place called Tom Bigby (*Bpn note: The Tombigbee River is in the area that later, in 1832, became the state of Alabama. This same area was indeed much earlier part of Spanish land. Even after becoming part of the Mississippi Territory purchased by the United States of America, this area was Indian land for some years.)
The Tombigee River originates in northeastern Mississippi and runs through western Alabama to Mobile. The significance or accuracy of this account is not evidenced in the record. But Maynard Poythress took up the topic in this interesting and informative commentary: https://lists.rootsweb.com/hyperkitty/list/poythress.rootsweb.com/thread/... <https://lists.rootsweb.com/hyperkitty/list/poythress.rootsweb.com/thread/...>
Here’s the direct link to the nine very carefully transcribed documents. We’ve provided a download option (PDF file) for those wishing to study the documents off line.
All - with thanks to his daughter Elaine for letting me know to post this:
David Franklin Poythress, born in Meridian, Lauderdale County, MS in 1933,
was the youngest of 6 children of Carl Hutton Poythress and Pearl Beasley.
He is the last of their children to die.
David died last week on 4 Sept 2019 at 86, in his sleep. The family plans
no obit or memorial service. His remains will join those of his 2nd wife,
Mary Lucy ("Lucy") who predeceased him in 2011, in the niche wall at
Natchez Trace Memorial Park Cemetery, at Madison, Madison County, MS.
FindAGrave.com there has a photo of their bronze marker.
David Franklin Poythress' ancestry was:
- son of Carl Hutton Poythress & Pearl Beasley
- grandson of James Speed Poythress & Martha Grice Raiford
- great-grandson of David E Poythress & Mary Speed Dortch
- gr-gr-grandson of Lewis Poythress & Rebecca B Taylor
May this 1st / 2nd / or 3rd cousin "once removed" [aka one generation
removed] from many Poythress folk across the country, Rest In Peace.
Attached is the link to a resource you may want to add to your genealogy bookmarks folder, especially if you are interested in exploring and interpreting land, court and other county level records. It is a project of the William M. Scholl Center for American History and Culture at The Newberry Library in Chicago.
The Atlas presents in maps and text complete data about the creation and all subsequent changes (dated to the day) in the size, shape, and location of every county in the fifty United States and the District of Columbia. It also includes non-county areas, unsuccessful authorizations for new counties, changes in county names and organization, and the temporary attachments of non-county areas and unorganized counties to fully functioning counties. The principal sources for these data are the most authoritative available: the session laws of the colonies, territories, and states that created and changed the counties.
What makes this Atlas stand out?
A dozen features distinguish the volumes and files of this atlas from other compilations.
All boundary changes in states and counties-unrivaled historical and geographic coverage.
Non-county areas-never before compiled or mapped.
Attachments to operational counties (non-county areas and unorganized counties)-never before compiled or mapped.
Separate map or polygon for every different county configuration-clarity and ease of use.
Based on original research in primary sources-unlike most reference works.
Primary sources cited for every change-unmatched documentation.
Information organized by both date and county-unmatched flexibility.
Locator maps for all county maps-show each county's location within its state.
Area (sq. mi.) for each county configuration-available nowhere else.
Polygons available in two formats: shapefiles and KMZ-broad applicability.
Supplementary bibliography, chronologies, and commentary-unusually complete and thorough data presentation.
Short and Long metadata documents for each state dataset-convenience and completeness.
These interactive maps are very easy to use and make it easy to visualize the formation and reformation of counties from the 1600s onward.
I will be adding this link to the Poythress website as a reference tool for primary records.
As may of you know, we’ve long sought evidence of the family origins of Rev. Francis Poythress and his sister, Susanna Prior. We know a bit about both of their lives in Virginia but have yet to confirm the identity of their parents.
Below is a new document (to me and this list/website) that might provide important clues. It is a digitized copy of: Jessamine County, Kentucky wills: Book A - 1799 to June 1813; Book B - 1813 to Mar. 1818; Book C - 1813 (June) to Nov. 1826 in the Allen County, KY public library, courtesy of the Internet Archive.
I have an imbedded link to the will book (rough transcription — in my opinion) - - if you click on the square brackets on the lower right of the image screen you’ll go directly to the page where the entry appears in the scanned document and see the source documentation that should be used if this document is cited. I’ve also extracted the text below this link.
If the significance of this family is unfamiliar to some of us, here’s a status overview I had pulled together to aid in focusing efforts.
I am especially interested in this will because of specific mention of her sister Elizabeth Peniston and of Robert Poythress Peniston in addition to nephews and nieces of Susanna. All of these families originated in Virginia. I’m hopeful we’ll be able to use this to link Rev. Francis and his sister Susanna to their Poythress line. As always, help is appreciated.
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.
Good to see you're watching, Bruce;)
Al, Bruce, & all: in that 1820 Chancery case that contained the 1818
Mecklenburg Co, VA will of Edward Giles Sr, my recollection (at a different
computer today) is that his granddaughter Milly Nance was the first-named
grandchild (so likely the eldest, or at least daughter of Edward Giles Sr's
eldest child) -- & that Milly was not mentioned as being an "infant" (the
legal terminology of someone under-age) at the time of the 1818 will, while
another grandchild later-named in the will, Martha Giles, was then
described as an infant.
I've just pulled out historical maps to refresh my memory re where
Bedford Co, VA (of that John Nance - Martha Estes 1811 marriage you found,
Al) was then located. Bedford Co's location was already set to today's
size & place by 1810: it's located significantly west of Mecklenburg Co --
over between Lynchburg and Roanoke -- sandwiched between them and between
today's US-29 and I-81.
Thus that Nance-Estes marriage of 1811 in Bedford Co, seems likely
all-wrong to be the parents of Edward Giles Sr's granddaughter Milly Nance
based on not only the year being too late, but also the distance in horse
and wagon days between Bedford Co and Mecklenburg Co.
While the rough-guesstimate birth years we get for Mahaley Nance who
later married Edward Poythress, and for "Milly Nance" are certainly in the
realm of possibility for them being the same female (thus making that a
marriage of first-cousins), I readily recognize that my hypothesis of them
being the same could be all wrong (or all right). Maybe it's moot for many
looking at Poythress-tracing, but maybe not since Edward & Mahaley
certainly left descendants.
Hopefully someone else has time to pursue other possible parents for Milly
-- with sourcing -- since unfortunately I don't, due to other (non-genie)
Re sourcing: please carefully check for any "caveat" listed in the fine
print of sites by some folk who've posted thousands of connections. Some
folk seem to readily "adopt" any info they find on the internet and plug it
into their own site, without any clear / reliable sourcing.
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.