I suspect this witness would be the Peter Poythress who is listed by Batte
as "of Branchester." Batte shows he lived from 1715 to 1785. Both Batte
and Dr. Claiborne Thweatt Smith (in his article "Poythress of Prince George
County, Virginia" contained in John Bennett Boddie's 1960 volume,
"Historical Southern Families, Volume IV") show this Peter Poythress married
his first cousin Elizabeth Bland and had 9 children - one son and 8
daughters, through whom they have many descendants, noted Batte. One child
of Peter Poythress & Elizabeth Bland was Anne Poythress who married John
Randolph. In Maynard's compilation that he's made available to us of
various counties' records (which he compiled from various authors' published
records, as I understand it), he shows that Peter Poythress' Prince George
Co, VA will was dated 5 Oct 1785, and recorded 10 Jan 1786. He cited U. S.
Circuit CT, Box 159, 1857 “Randolph vs Randolph’s Exors” (file 1), but I'm
not privy to how he learned about that, or where we could see the case
file. Presumably that case file must have a copy of Peter's will.
The reasons I suspect Peter of Branchester would be the correct Peter
Poythress for this document, are because:
(1) the participants were from all around -- Dinwiddie Co & Brunswick Co,
while the land being sold was in Mecklenburg Co. Thus the March 1783
witnesses could have been from where ever they were drawing up the
document. Peter Poythress having been of Branchester in Prince George Co is
not eliminated. Both Brunswick Co (in 1732) and Dinwiddie Co (in 1752) were
formed out of part of Prince George Co, by the way.
(2) It would fit that Peter Poythress' death in about 1785 was one cause
for Atkinson to need to re-acknowledge the deed in July 1785, since not all
the original 1783 witnesses (including Peter) were available to acknowledge
the Deed's validity.
I have not seen the full deed yet in Deed Book 6, and I'm not sure doing so
would add a lot to what we can know from this abstract. I am not familiar
with the other names mentioned in the land description, or the other
I located this abstract in TLC Genealogy's 1991 volume of abstracts of
Mecklenburg Co, VA Deeds 1779-1786 (that is, Deed Book 6). It gives this
Mecklenburg Co, VA DB 6, p.483, using "M" as an abbreviation in their
abstract for "Mecklenburg:"
Mar 27, 1783 from Roger Atkinson of Dinwiddie County, to John Ogburn of
Brunswick County, for 5,000 pounds of nett, inspected, crop tobacco, about
90 acres in M adjoining the lands of David Dardin, Joel Traylor, James
Crook, it being the same land said Atkinson lately bought of William Talley
(and which Thos Prosize now lives on) by M deed. Signed - Roger Atkinson.
Wit - Joseph Jones, Peter Poythress, Charles Cabaness, John Atkinson.
Jul 5, 1785. I Hereby reacknowledge the within deed. Signed - Roger
Atkinson. Wit - Charles Ogburn, Mark Russell, Benjamin Ogburn, Isaac (+
his mark) Russell. Recorded Jul 11, 1785.