Personal Property Tax Lists for Rockbridge County, Virginia

When I began doing family research on the internet, I connected with Robert N. Grant, author of Sorting some of the Wrights of Southern Virginia. I found him on a mailing list (pre-Facebook days) where he mentioned a couple of my surnames. This was back in May 2000 when he was working on the draft of his work on 1825 Achilles WRIGHT of Oldham County, Kentucky (the year before his name indicates the year of death in the said county). Bob sent me a paper version of this draft via snail mail (yes, it was that long ago) that included information on my LANDRUM and CRISP lines of Amherst County, Virginia as Achilles had lived in Amherst and Nelson counties in Virginia before moving to Kentucky.

Repaying an Act of Genealogical Kindness

The book is part of a series of books that are available on FamilySearch. Years later I was able to return the favor. In October 2014 I found chancery records involving a James WRIGHT and sent the link to Bob. I received a reply the same day thanking me. I’d caught him pre-retirement and in July 2015 he wrote:

I wanted to thank you again for the very helpful reference to the Nelson County Chancery Court cases involving James Wright.  They clearly identified James, the son of 1825 Achilles Wright of Oldham County, KY, as the James who married Lucy Crisp.  Thank you! 

In addition, the case clarified that Elizabeth Wright who married Elijah Skidmore was a daughter of James and not, as had been reported previously, a daughter of his brother 1845 George Wright of Trimble County, KY.  That rewrote a portion of my materials as well.

I have an updated version of my material on 1825 Achilles Wright and his descendants and would be happy to send that to you, if that would be of interest to you.  It includes a transcription of the chancery court case that lays out the family of James and the family of Lucy’s parents.

A Lesson Learned from Bob’s Research

When I found those chancery records I knew I had to send the information to Bob to repay him for sharing his work with me. I never forgot this act of kindness on his part as he also taught me the importance of personal property tax and land tax lists without knowing it.

By reading through his draft, I learned how the PPT and land tax lists can be used in our research. Although the annual PPT lists may appear to include very little information compared to census records, when they are viewed as a whole, the information can be used to fill in the missing years between the census. For persons of the same surname, relationships may have been expressly or implicitly stated. They can also help with determining when a person lived in a certain place and when he may have moved or died. Most importantly, the names found on the lists can help identify the male members of households in pre-1850 census listings.

The Library of Virginia’s “Using Personal Property Tax Records in the Archives at the Library of Virginia” (Research Notes Number 3) includes the following:

The early laws required the tax commissioner in each district to record in “a fair alphabetical list” the names of the person chargeable with the tax as well as all “tithables,” or taxable individuals and goods in the household. Included were the names of white male tithables over the age of twenty-one, the number of white male tithables between ages sixteen and twenty-one, the number of enslaved people both above and below age sixteen, various types of animals such as horses and cattle, carriage wheels, ordinary licenses, and even billiard tables. 

During the past five years or so, I’ve been checking the catalog at FamilySearch for collections that are available to all users on the site and not only at the Family History Library or associated libraries. Land tax records for several counties in West Virginia were found to be accessible in 2019.

Earlier this week in the Facebook group Rockbridge County Virginia Genealogy, I replied to a query. Someone asked if the tax lists were available online. Not knowing the answer, I checked the catalog and I discovered the Personal Property Tax lists for Rockbridge County, Virginia, are online on FamilySearch.

Rockbridge Couty, Virginia, Personal Property Tax Lists

I’d been waiting to be able to work with tax lists for many of my lines since I first read Bob’s draft. Discovering their availability for Rockbridge pushed me to do some browsing in these records.

One of my DEMPSEY brick walls began to crumble in 2007 when I found Wm. A. W. DEMPSEY listed on the 1841 tax list of Rockbridge County, Virginia. The initials are the same as those he used on the 1850 census in Fayette County, (West) Virginia, and in 1862 on the Provost Marshals’ List (a Civil War document). I am convinced these initials were very important to him.

In Section VII of A History of Rockbridge County, Virginia1 the taxpayers of the county for 1841 were listed. The numbers after their names refer to the road precincts in which the persons lived.

Image courtesy of Archive.org. (https://archive.org/details/historyofrockbri00mortrich/page/380/mode/1up : accessed 13 March 2021)

Appendix D in the book gives a description of the precincts.

Image courtesy of Archive.org. (https://archive.org/details/historyofrockbri00mortrich/page/552/mode/1up : accessed 13 March 2021)By searching through the taxpayer’s list for others who were in precinct 43,  I was able to put together this list of persons who were likely his neighbors.

1841 Taxpayers
Rockbridge County, Virginia
43 – Nathaniel Gaylor’s to Cumings and Carter’s, intersecting Gilmore’s Road
Dempsey, William A. W.
Others who lived in the same road precinct:
George Agnor, Jacob Agnor, Sr., Jacob Agnor, Little Jake Agnor, John Agnor, John H. Agnor, David Entsminger, Albert Gilliat, and William T. Ruley. (Note to self: Agnor was later seen as Agnew)

The problem was that the source was not a primary source. Finding the mention in the book was not the same as accessing a digital copy of the tax list collection: Personal property tax lists, 1782-1850, main author: Commissioner of the Revenue (Rockbridge County, Virginia).

I searched first for the image of the 1841 tax list naming William A. W. Dempsey.

Wm. A. W. DEMPSEY was enumerated on 29 March 1841. In the column for white males of 16, there is a 1 indicating one person 16 or older was tithable. It is my understanding that the person named had to be of age therefore 21 years old or older. William was therefore born about 1820 or earlier.

Headers of the 1841 Personal Property Tax List for the South West District (Samuel Walkup) of Rockbridge County, Virginia. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKJ-Q3T8-Q?i=228&cat=694874 : accessed 5 March 2021)
1841 Personal Property Tax List for the South West District (Samuel Walkup) of Rockbridge County, Virginia. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKJ-Q3T8-Q?i=228&cat=694874 : accessed 5 March 2021)

In 1842, William was not found. In 1843 he was visited by Samuel Walkup in the southwest district on 5 April 1843. The entire list was viewed. I found William was the only person who was visited on that day. Is this an indication that he lived in a sparsely populated area?

1843 Personal Property Tax List for the South West District (Samuel Walkup) of Rockbridge County, Virginia. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKJ-Q3Y2-F?cat=694874 : accessed March 2021)

No Dempsey was found in Rockbridge County on the PPT for the years 1844 to 1851.

William A. W. DEMPSEY was in Fayette County at the time of the 1850 census. The PPT for Fayette County, available for the years 1831 to 1850, showed a William DEMPSEY in 1846, 1849, and 1850. No initials are noted.

Working backward, I checked in Rockbridge before 1841.

1839 tax list: John W. Dempsey (March 4) and William Dempsey (April 3), both in Samuel Walkup district.

William A. W. DEMPSEY was listed as 28 in 1850 and as 40 in 1860 on the census of Fayette County. If this William DEMPSEY was William A. W. DEMPSEY and only men 21 or older were named then he was born 1818 or earlier. He was visited a month after John W. DEMPSEY. If they had been closely related or living near each other, wouldn’t they have been visited within a day or two?

John W. DEMPSEY (1802-1873) married in Rockbridge in 1824. He was on the Fayette County census in 1840 and the PPT lists from 1840 to 1850. He has been proven to be the son of Tandy DEMPSEY who was in Rockbridge in 1820 (per census) and earlier (per tax list), in Logan (now WV) in 1830 (per census), and in Jay County, Indiana, by early fall 1835 until 8 August 1836 when his death was the first recorded in the township of Bear Creek.

1838 John Demsey (W.C. Lewis district) with 0ne horse, male, mule, or cattle. The W. C. Lewis district appears to be the same district seen as Samuel Walkup district in later years.

1837 John W. Demsey (W.C. Lewis district) with 0ne horse, male, mule, or cattle

1836 John Demsey (W.C. Lewis district) with one slave

If John W. DEMPSEY was the father of William A. W. DEMPSEY, the 1836 to 1838 tax lists (above) do not help to show this as male white tithables 16 and older were not noted. If this category had been included then John and all males 16 and older (possible sons in the household) would have been included in the count. Further, if John was the father, he would have had to have been married before his 1824 marriage.

From 1835 back to 1822 (W.C. Lewis district) no Demsey or Dempsey was found on the PTT.

Personal property tax books, 1824-1850 for Logan County are restricted at this time on FamilySearch. When they are available, I need to check if Tandy, John W., and other siblings were in Logan before 1835. Tandy was in Indiana by 1835, is known to have been in Logan for the 1830 census and the 1827 tax list (from a transcript).

Other Virginia Counties Need to be Checked

Rockbridge County is surrounded by the counties of Augusta, Nelson, Amherst, Bedford, Botetourt, Alleghany, and Bath. I’ve searched Botetourt and will be working through each of the other counties to find Dempsey individuals who may have crossed over the county lines. Formation of the counties will also be considered.

Botetourt had the expected Rev. Absalom C. DEMPSEY (1787-1872) on the tax list from 1809 to 1851. The Reverend was the son of another William DEMPSEY who died before June 1806 and grandson of a William DEMPSEY who died about 1806. The estimated deaths of Absolom’s father and grandfather were found in chancery records that also name children of the younger William, including William the 3rd who died intestate, unmarried, and without issue before 1822 (see images 4 and 5).

Montgomery has also been added to the list of counties to check as there is a connection between men found on the Botetourt tax lists and at least one known to have been in Montgomery. Hugh DEMPSEY (born 1785 or earlier) was not named as a son of the senior William mentioned in the chancery records. He was seen in Botetourt from 1808 to 1828, was on the 1830 census in Montgomery before going to Missouri before 1840.

Orange County will also be carefully checked as I have researched the DEMPSEY family coming out of this county in my process of elimination.

Recap for William A. W. Dempsey

My review of the Rockbridge County PPT brought to light two tax listings for my great-great-grandfather William A. W. DEMPSEY. Listed with the middle initials he used during his lifetime, he was found in the county in 1841 and 1843. The 1839 listings may or may not be for my William.

As other counties in Virginia (including present-day West Virginia) are checked, I hope to be able to sort all of the DEMPSEY individuals into their appropriate family groups.

As my William A. W. DEMPSEY went to Fayette County after 1843 and by 1846, it has been speculated that he may have been a son of John W. DEMPSEY who married Margaret FITZPATRICK in 1824. This John moved to Fayette County by July 1839 when he married his second wife, Amelia RIDDLE. I also once considered this possibility. As genealogy research has not so far turned up any supporting evidence for this assumption, I’ve turned to genetic genealogy and evaluating DNA matches. If my William A. W. DEMPSEY were the son of John W. DEMPSEY and the half-sibling of John’s children from both marriages, I should be seeing matches with some of their descendants. So far, none have been found.

And the search continues, for the parents of William A. W. DEMPSEY.

© 2021, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. Oren F. Morton, B. Lit.; A History of Rockbridge County, Virginia; published by The McClure Co., Inc., Staunton, Virginia 1920; pgs. 380, 552. Images of the pages in the book courtesy of Archive.org. 

Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING: Violate, Evoline, and Samuel

In Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING: Henry, a Slave in Nicholas County, (West) Virginia, the slaveholder of the enslaved Henry was John S. Roberts. Further research turned up connections to others who owned slaved. John Shelton Roberts was the son of Alexander Roberts and Sarah Shepherd of Nelson County, Virginia. He married Adeline B. Landcraft, daughter of Nathaniel Landcraft and Sarah B. Hardin, on 6 September 1829 in Nelson County. John and Adeline very likely came to the Fayette/Nicholas counties area with Adeline’s parents. By 1830 John was living in Nicholas County where he (male 20 thru 29) was seen on the census with his wife (female 20 thru 29) and two young slaves under 10 years of age. When he died the appraisement of his estate included only the enslaved Henry. Was it possible the other slave belonged to his widow Adeline B. Landcraft? Did she receive the enslaved person in their 1830 household from her parents?

Nathaniel Landcraft was seen in Nelson County, Virginia, with the following household in 1820:

1820 United States Federal Census

Name: Nathaniel Landcraft
Home in 1820 (City, County, State): Buckingham, Nelson, Virginia
Enumeration Date: August 7, 1820
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 15: 2
Free White Persons – Males – 16 thru 25: 1
Free White Persons – Males – 45 and over: 1
Free White Persons – Females – Under 10: 1
Free White Persons – Females – 10 thru 15: 2
Free White Persons – Females – 26 thru 44: 1
Slaves – Males – Under 14: 2
Slaves – Males – 14 thru 25: 2
Slaves – Females – Under 14: 4
Slaves – Females – 14 thru 25: 1
Slaves – Females – 26 thru 44: 2
Number of Persons – Engaged in Agriculture: 3
Number of Persons – Engaged in Manufactures: 2
Free White Persons – Under 16: 5
Free White Persons – Over 25: 2
Total Free White Persons: 8
Total Slaves: 11
Total All Persons – White, Slaves, Colored, Other: 19

Source: 1820 U S Census; Census Place: Buckingham, Nelson, Virginia; Page: 196; NARA Roll: M33_130; Image: 374; Ancestry.com

In 1830 Nathaniel Landcraft was found in Summersville, Nicholas County, (West) Virginia, where his daughter Adeline and son-in-law John S. Roberts were also living. The image is very light, however, I was able to confirm the entry is for Nathaniel Landcraft and not Sanderson as indexed below.

1830 United States Federal Census

Name: Nathaniel Sanderson
[Nathaniel Snderapt] 
Home in 1830 (City, County, State): Summersville, Nicholas, Virginia
Free White Persons – Males – 15 thru 19: 1
Free White Persons – Males – 20 thru 29: 3
Free White Persons – Males – 50 thru 59: 1
Free White Persons – Females – 15 thru 19: 1
Free White Persons – Females – 50 thru 59: 1
Slaves – Males – Under 10: 4
Slaves – Males – 24 thru 35: 1
Slaves – Females – Under 10: 2
Slaves – Females – 24 thru 35: 2
Free White Persons – Under 20: 2
Free White Persons – 20 thru 49: 3
Total Free White Persons: 7
Total Slaves: 9
Total – All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 16

Source: 1830; Census Place: Summersville, Nicholas, Virginia; Series: M19; Roll: 198; Page: 193; Family History Library Film: 0029677; Ancestry.com

As can be seen in the census listings above, Landcraft had 11 slaves in his household in 1820 and 9 (6 of whom were born after 1820) in 1830. At the time of his death, the appraisement of his estate included only three enslaved persons: Violate, Evoline and Samuel.

1835 Appraisement of the Estate of Nathaniel Landcraft

 

“West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:9392-C9SQ-64?cc=1909099&wc=Q816-MG7%3A179689901%2C179689902 : accessed 30 July 2017), Fayette > Will book, v. 001 1832-1866 > image 28 of 292; county courthouses, West Virginia.

We the undersigned (after first duly sworn)
have proceeded to appraise in Current money the
person (sic) estate and Negro Belonging to the Estate
of Nathaniel Landcraft decd as followeth, to wit.

One Negro Woman named Violate $375
One    Do    Girle          ”     Evoline 150
One    Do    Boy            ”      Samuel 125
One Cupboard & Furniture 35
One Safe & furniture 10
One Sideboard & Table 5
One Clock 10
One Bed & furniture 30
Two Beds, Bedsteads & furniture 60
One Trunk, Chist & Bedstead 4
One Looking Glass 2
Two Waiters 1.50
Nine Chairs 4.50
One Tea Kittle and Irons & Shovels & Tongs 3
Kitchen furniture 15
Books 2.50
TOTAL $832.50

Given under our hand this 2nd day
of January 1855_
. . . . . . . . . . . .T.B. Hamilton
. . . . . . . . . . . .P. Keenan             Appraisers
. . . . . . . . . . . .Wm. Morris

Fayette County Court Clerks Office Jany Term 1835
The Appraisement Bill of the Estate of Nathaniel Land-
craft decd was Recd and ordered to be recorded_
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Test
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Hiram Hill CK

End of transcription

About the time Nathaniel Landcraft died, his daughter Adeline, widow of John S. Roberts, married the Baptist minister Edwin W. Woodson. They made their home in Monroe County, (West) Virginia. In 1840 Woodson had two slaves in his household, a male and a female, both were 10 thru 23 years old. Could either of them be one of the slaves mentioned in the Landcraft appraisement?

In 1850 E W Woodson owned one female slave age 20. In 1860 Adeline Woodson owned one female slave age 30. Who was this female slave? Did Rev. Woodson die before 1860? Did he leave a will, inventory, or appraisement mentioning the slave enumerated under his name in 1850?

To be continued in next month’s post….

bestwishescathy1

True's statementFollowing my three part series on the slaves of my 5th great grandfather James Sims during Black History Month in February 2015 I made a commitment to write a post on a monthly basis until I’ve RELEASED all of the names of slaves owned by my ancestors or owned by persons I’ve researched who were relatives or neighbors of my ancestors.

These posts are part of the Slave Name Roll Project (About the Project) administered by Schalene Jennings Dagutis who also blogs at Tangled Roots and Trees.

© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING: Henry, a Slave in Nicholas County, (West) Virginia

John S. Roberts of Nicholas County, Virginia (present-day West Virginia) owned one negro boy named Henry as seen in the appraisal of his estate recorded during the March 1832 term of Nicholas County court.

John S. Roberts – 1832 Appraisement Bill

“West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-18231-22608-67?cc=1909099 : accessed 20 January 2016), Nicholas > Will book, v. 001 1820-1899 > image 48 of 158; page 68 ; county courthouses, West Virginia.

Nicholas County to wit
In pursuance of the within order of Nicholas County Court We Robert Kelly, Robert Hamilton and William D. Cottle after having been duly sworn proceeded to appraise the Estate of John S. Roberts dec’d and make the following return.
One Cow $8.00
Two bed & furniture at $25 each $50
One folding leaf table $5.00
One dressing table $3.00
One shot gum $10.00
One cupboard furniture knives etc. $6.00
One negro boy named Henry $250.00
One set of bed steads $1.00
One ditto ditto $2.00
A pile of corn in the ears $2.50
4 Bushels of potatoes at 25 cts $1.00
One barrel and boxes $0.50
Half a Doz chairs $3.00

“West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-18231-22608-67?cc=1909099 : accessed 20 January 2016), Nicholas > Will book, v. 001 1820-1899 > image 48 of 158; page 69 ; county courthouses, West Virginia.

One big wheel $2.00
One weeding hoe $0.50
One pot and hooks $2.00
Two skillets and lids $2.50
One oven and lid $2.25
One tin kettle $2.00
. . . . . . (total) $343.25
all which is respectfully submitted by ous (sic)
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R. Kelly
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R. Hamilton
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Wm. D. Cottle
At a court held for Nicholas County March Term 1832 This appraisement bill of the estate of John S. Roberts was returned duly certified by the appraisers and ordered to be recorded.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Teste
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saml Price C??

Who Was John S. Roberts?

John Shelton Roberts was the son of Alexander Roberts and Sarah Shepherd of Nelson County, Virginia. He married Adeline B. Landcraft, daughter of Nathaniel Landcraft and Sarah B. Hardin, on 6 September 1829 in Nelson County. They very likely came to the Fayette/Nicholas counties area with Adeline’s parents. By 1830 John was living in Nicholas County where he (male 20 thru 29) was seen on the census with his wife (female 20 thru 29) and two young slaves under 10 years of age. Following his death, his widow remarried.

How Did John S. Roberts Become A Slaveholder?

A quick check turned up the names of more slaves as both John’s and Adeline’s parents were slaveholders, as was Rev. Edwin Washington Woodson who married Adeline after John’s death. The names will be shared in several Slave Name Roll Project posts to come.

bestwishescathy1

True's statementFollowing my three part series on the slaves of my 5th great-grandfather James Sims during Black History Month in February 2015 I made a commitment to write a post on a monthly basis until I’ve RELEASED all of the names of slaves owned by my ancestors or owned by persons I’ve researched who were relatives or neighbors of my ancestors. These posts are part of the Slave Name Roll Project which can be found on Schalene Jennings Dagutis’ blog Tangled Roots and Trees

© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING Jordan (Gordon), Hannah, John, Creasy, Hill, and Disy

In the Chancery Records Index (with images), a collection on the Library of Virginia site, slave names are indexed with a tilde (~) after their name – usually first name only. To search for a slave without a name, under surnames limit the search to “includes” and place only a tilde in the surname box. You can narrow the search to a county and/or a specific surname, plaintiff, or defendant mentioned in the case. Very often when slave names are involved there may be wills included in the packet.

In Nelson County, Virginia, I found a small chancery case from 1825 which mentioned Jordan and Hannah, slaves willed to Pamelia Smith, wife of James Smith, daughter of Elizabeth Wills, and granddaughter of James Wills Senr.

1825jamssmithchancery1
Image 2 of 6 in the Chancery case: http://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1825-006
1825jamssmithchancery2
Image 3 of 6 in the Chancery case: http://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1825-006

                To the Court of Nelson County in Chancery sitting
Your Petitioner John Moss respectfully represents to the Court that one James Smith whom your Orator prays may be taken as Defendant hereto stands justly indebted to him in the sum of Sixty Dollars with Interest thereon fixed the first day of January 1820 due by an Instrument of writing commonly called a penal bill under the proper hand and seal of him the said James Smith which is herewith filed and prayed to be taken as a part of this bill. Your petitioner further represents to the Court, that the said James Smith hath removed himself without the limits of this Commonwealth so that the ordinary process of Law cannot be served upon him and that he hath a life estate in a certain tract of Land lying in this County willed to his wife Pamela Smith by her Grand father James Wills Senr. decd. which will is duly recorded in this County and is to be taken and considered as a part of this bill, also two Negroes namely Jordan and Hannah which is now in the possession of his said wife Pamelia or her mother Elizabeth Wills and which was willed to her by her Grand father, the said James Wills Senr. decd. your  petitioner prays that this said Pamelia and Elizabeth may be considered and taken also as Defts hereto. Your petitioner further states that there is no Executions in the hand of the Sheriff of this county sufficient to consume the whole value of the personal property belonging to the said James Smith and Pamelia his wife in this state. Your petitioner therefore prays that he Court will Decree to him his debt aforesaid, against the said James Smith and that the said Pamelia his wife and Elizabeth be restrained from carrying away or otherwise disposing of any property which she may have in her possession untill the further order and decree of this Court and that should there not be a sufficiency in her hands to satisfy the said debt and Executions aforesaid that the Court will make such disposition of the land aforesaid for the purpose of paying his debt aforesaid as may seem just and equitable and such as is agreeable to the laws of the land and for the purpose of bringing the parties properly before the Court your petitioner prays that an order of publication may be awarded against the Deft James according to law and that a writ of subpoena and a restraining order be awarded against the Defts Pamelia and Elizabeth who is (sic) an inhabitant of this state and within the Jurisdiction of this Court. Your Orator prays for such other and further and releif (sic) as the justice of his case entitled him to and in duty borned will ever pray.
Perrow for Plt

James Wills Sr. family of Nelson County, Virginia, is not one of my ancestral or collateral lines. However I could not post this without taken a bit of time to do a few quick searches. The abstracted information from the 1820 census on Ancestry shows he owned 40 slaves.

1820jameswillscensusA search for the will of said slave holder turned up an obsolete site with the last will and testament of James Wills, Senior (Nelson County, Virginia, Will Book B, pages 178-77-78) dated 29 September 1820 and probated 26 February 1821. It mentions slaves in the possession of some of his children but not by name.

James’ son James Wills Jr. was deceased at the time of the will and his two children, including his daughter mention in the chancery record above, were mentioned in item 2 of the will:

2nd. 1 give, devise and bequeath to my grandson. Jefferson L. Wills, son of my son, James Wills Jr. dec’d,, two-hundred and filly acres of the tract of land on which his mother now resides, the entire tract containing four-hundred acres, three hundred and sixty-seven of which was purchased under deed of trust made by my said son James to Murphy, Brown & Co., and thirty-three acres residue was purchased by me of my said son by deed of record in the Court of Nelson County which said two-hundred and fly acres having been intended to be given to my said grandson, I wish land of such manner by my said executors as to include the dwelling house to him and to his heirs forever, reserving the liberty to his Mother to use the said land and enjoy, the benefits thereof jointly with him during her natural life or widowhood. The residue of the tract being one hundred and fifty acres. I devise and bequeath to my granddaughter Pamela Smith, the wife of James Smith, to her and to the heirs of her body forever. I also give my said granddaughter the negroes (2) namely, Gordon and Hannah now in the possession of her mother, Elizabeth Wills, to her and the heirs of her body forever. The residue of my negroes on said plantation, consisting of John, Creasy, Hill and Disy (and) now in the possession of my said daughter-in-law, Elizabeth Wills (wife of James Wills, Jr. Dec’d.), 1 give and devise and bequeath to my grandson, Jefferson L. Wills and to his heirs forever, allowing to his mother the liberty as to use and profit in the same manner as the land left them during her life or widowhood. Having advanced considerable sum of money for my said son, James in his lifetime it is not my will and desire that his children should have any more of my estate nor do I wish them to be held responsible for any such advancement made to their said father.

With the above document of the chancery case and this partial abstract of the will of James Wills Sr. I RELEASE the names of his known slaves in the possession of his son James Jr.’s family in 1820: Jordan (Gordon), Hannah, John, Creasy, Hill, and Disy.

True's statementFollowing my three part series on the slaves of my 5th grand-father James Sims during Black History Month in February 2015 I made a commitment to write a post on a monthly basis until I’ve RELEASED all of the names of slaves owned by my ancestors. At this point in time I’ve done all the ancestors I know of who owned slaves. There are likely more as I move back in time but, at the moment, I will share names of slaves I find who were not owned by one of my ancestors.

bestwishescathy1

© 2016, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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52 Ancestors: #48 Who Was the Father of Rachel PROFFITT? ~ A Study of Family Groups

“The challenge: have one blog post each week devoted to a specific ancestor. It could be a story, a biography, a photograph, an outline of a research problem — anything that focuses on one ancestor.”

This is entry #48 in Amy Johnson Crow’s Challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

#48 Who Was the Father of Rachel PROFFITT? ~ A Study of Family Groups

Since writing Rachel’s story in June 2014 I’ve been working on and off, and more intensively the past two weeks, on the two men who may have been her father: David PROFFITT and his brother Austin PROFFITT. I had planned on discussing both sets of possible parents in two posts as I still had unresolved questions concerning Rachel’s parentage.

Then I changed my mind because I think that it is more likely that David and his wife Sally were her parents than Austin and his wife Patsy. Is it a gut feeling or based on evidence?

Certificate of Death 153, Nannie Ellen Cates

Rachel PROFFITT, my third great-grandmother, was born about 1817 in Franklin County, Virginia. Although her married life is well documented, the names of her parents have not been found in any written records. Her maiden name is seen on the death certificate of her youngest child Nannie Ellen CATES who died in 1942.1

Many online GEDCOMs show that Rachel was a daughter of David PROFFITT and Sarah “Sally” COCKRAM who married on 21 October 1813 in Franklin County, Virginia2. Another possibility is that she was the daughter of Austin PROFFITT and Martha “Patsy” RAKES who married on 4 June 1813 in Franklin County, Virginia.3

Austin and David were brothers and the only children of Austin PROFFITT who died before 1803. Their mother “Betsey PROPHET” is enumerated with her two young sons ages between 10 and 15 years on the 1810 census of Franklin County and may also be reflected in the household of her son Austin in 1820 and 1830. The ages found for the brothers in the 1850 and later censuses show they were quite young when they married in 1813.

Grandsons of David PROFITT

Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, John Proffit vs Heirs of David Proffit 1810-005

chancery1
Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, John Proffit vs Heirs of David Proffit 1810-005
chancery2
Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, John Proffit vs Heirs of David Proffit 1810-005

These Chancery Records mention the deceased David PROFITT’s son Austin PROFITT, who predeceased his father, and his minor children David and Austin PROFITT. This establishes that David and Austin were the only children of Austin PROFITT, deceased. Also mentioned are the other 10 children of David: John PROFITT, Randolph PROFITT, Jesse PROFITT, Rowland PROFITT, Elizabeth PROFITT, Nancy PROFITT, Molly (née PROFITT) and Duncan CAMERON, Sally (née PROFITT) and William JOSLIN, Susannah (née PROFITT) and Joseph WILCHER, and David PROFITT.4

Austin, son of David

Austin PROFFITT (1770-1803) was born on 17 January 1770 in Amherst County, Virginia, to David PROFFITT and his wife Elizabeth SMITH. In 1790 he was not yet 21 years of age when he was seen on the Tax List of Amherst County with his father David Sr.5

1790taxproffit
1790 Tax List of Amherst County, Virginia

Austin married Elizabeth “Betsey” ROBERTSON on 22 November 1790 in Amherst County, Virginia. Austin’s name was seen as Augusten on the marriage record.6 Betsey was born about 1773 in Amherst County, Virginia, to Arthur ROBERTSON and his wife Milly. Austin and Betsey, as established above, had two sons born in Amherst County: David PROFFITT born about 1793 and Austin PROFFITT (1796-1871) born about 1796.

Austin’s father David died intestate. On 19 April 1803 John PROFFITT, Rowland PROFFITT, and James MURPHY went bond for the letters of administration. His sons John and Rowland were administrators of their father’s estate.7

The inventory of the estate of David PROFFITT was returned by Shelton CROSTHWAIT, Charles EDMUNDS, and Zachary WHITE on 20 June 1803 and ordered to be recorded.8 The estate of David PROFFITT was valued at £262, 6 shillings, 9 pence. A guardian bond was filed for Betsy PROFFITT as the guardian of David and Augustine PROFFITT, orphans of Augustine PROFFITT.9

It is not known when Betsey and her boys moved to Franklin County or even if Austin may have been living there when he died. The chancery record seen above does not include the location of the persons involved other than the fact that four of the children of David were not living in the Commonwealth of Virginia. By 1810 Betsey was living next door to her father Arthur ROBERTSON in Franklin County. There was an unknown older man in her household.

1810censusprophet
1810 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Franklin

1810 U.S. Federal Census10
Franklin County, Virginia
Betsey Prophet
2 males 10 to 15 yo (David and Austin b. bet. 1795-1800)
1 male 45 and older (unknown person)
1 female 26 thru 44 yo (Betsey)
no other free persons or slaves

During the time period of the War of 1812 (18 Jun 1812-24 Dec 1814) both of Betsey’s sons married:

◉ Austin PROFFITT married Martha “Patsy” RAKES (1796-1871) on 4 June 1813 in Franklin County, Virginia11

◉ David PROFFITT married Sarah “Sally” COCKRAM on 21 October 1813 in Franklin County, Virginia12

Family Groups Study

The fact that David and Austin were the only children of Austin and Betsey and the only men with the surname PROFFITT in Franklin County during the years from 1810 to 1840 makes the study of the two family groups a bit easier. These are the children of each of Betsy’s sons:

Children of David PROFFITT and Sarah “Sally” COCKRAM

◉ Ch 1: Hessie “Esther” PROFFITT (1814-aft. 1800) was born about 1814 in Franklin County, Virginia. She married Owen STEVENS (1821-1880) on 19 August 1835 in Franklin County, Virginia. “David PROPHET” was surety.13 Hessie died between 1880-1900.

◉ Ch 2: Rachel PROFFITT (1817-1899) was born about 1817 in Franklin County, Virginia. She married Jordan N. PETERS (1796-1890) on 8 December 1841 (estimate) in Franklin County, Virginia.14 Rachel died on 5 March 1899 in Nettle Ridge, Patrick County, Virginia. No record was found to prove that she was the daughter of David and Sarah.

◉ Ch 3: Austin PROFFITT (1822-aft. 1910) was born April 1822 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married Vincey NEWBERRY (1827-1910) on 14 September 1844 in Franklin County, Virginia15 Austin died after April 1910. In 1870 his father David was in his household, however, the relationship is not specifically stated.

◉ Ch 4: Preston PROFFITT (1825-aft. 1880) was born about 1825 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married Martha WRIGHT (1820-1880) on 1 June 1844 in Floyd County, Virginia.16 He went to Morgan County, Kentucky, with his family before 1860. Preston died between 1880-1900. No record was found to prove that he was the son of David and Sarah.

◉ Ch 5: David PROFFITT (1827-1887) was born about 1827 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married Jane PINION (1838- ) before 1855. David died on 27 December 1887 in Lebanon, Russell County, Virginia.[8] The death record lists David PROFIT as his father.17

◉ Ch 6: _____ PROFFITT (female) born between 1826-1830 in Franklin County, Virginia

◉ Ch 7: Edward “Ned” PROFFITT (1831-1894) was born about 1831 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married Sarah “Sally” KEEN (1825- ) on 6 January 1848 in Tazewell County, Virginia.18 Edward died on 18 February 1894 in Doran, Tazewell County, Virginia.19 The parents are listed as David and Sally PROFFITT on the death record.

◉ Ch 8: Samuel PROFFITT (1837-1910) was born ab.t 1837 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married(1) Tabitha PINION (1840-1880) before 1860. Samuel PROFFITT married(2) his cousin Malinda PROFFITT (1838-1884) on 18 December 1883 in Tazewell County, Virginia. The marriage record shows that Samuel was the son of David and Sallie PROFFIT while Malinda was the daughter of “Ostin” and Patsy PROFFIT.20 Malinda may have died before August 1888 as Samuel married(3) Elizabeth “Lizzie” HUFFMAN on 24 August 1888 in Russell County, Virginia.21 His father was listed as David PROFIT.

◉ Ch 9: Stabina “Stella” PROFFITT (1840-1874) was born about 1840 in Franklin County, Virginia. She married Jessee R. MUSICK (1830- ) on 13 September 1855 in Russell County, Virginia. David and Sarah are listed as her parents.22 Stabina “Stella” PROFFITT died on 15 October 1874 in Lawrence County, Kentucky.23 The death record lists David and Sally PROPHET as her parents.

Children of Austin PROFFITT and Martha “Patsy” RAKES

◉ Ch 1: Harvey PROFFITT (1815-1885) was born about 1815 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married(1) Sarah Jane BARTON (1818-1893) on 3 December 1835 in Floyd County, Virginia. 24 They appear to have divorced as Harvey married(2) Rosannah NEWBERRY (1845-1885) on 17 November 1876 in Russell County, Virginia. The parents were listed as Austin and Martha PROPHET.25 Harvey died after 30 December 1885 (the date that his 2nd wife died).

◉ Ch 2: Delilah PROFFITT (1818-1892) was born about 1818. She married(1) Berry WOOD on 11 July 1836 in Franklin County, Virginia. Surety was Austin Prophet.26 She married(2) William HICKS on 16 June 1841 in Hawkins County, Tennessee.27

◉ Ch 3: Lewis PROFFITT (1820-1898) was born about 1820 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married Eliza GEORGE (1821-1881) on 27 December 1842 in Patrick County, Virginia.28 Lewis died on 10 October 1898 in Missouri.29 No record was found to prove that he was the son of  Austin and Martha. He lived in Hancock County, Tennessee, 15 households away from Austin and Martha PROFFITT in 1850.

◉ Ch 4: Elisha PROFFITT (1826- ) was born about 1826 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married Malinda UNDERWOOD (1826- ) on 22 May 1845 in Franklin County, Virginia. The marriage record shows that he was the son of Austin.30 He died after 1880. His wife was still living in 1910.

◉ Ch 5: _____ PROFFITT (daughter) born bet. 1826-1830

◉ Ch 6: _____ PROFFITT (son) born bet. 1831-1835

◉ Ch 7: Joseph M. PROFFITT (1838-1911) was born on 17 March 1838 in Franklin County, Virginia. He married Margaret F. CARTER (1840-1877) in 1860. Joseph died on 14 April 1911 in Buchanon County, Missouri. The death certificate lists “Oscar” and Martha PROFFIT.31

◉ Ch 8: Malinda PROFFITT (1838-1884) was born about 1838 in Franklin County, Virginia. She married(1) David BROOKS on 11 January 1854 in Claiborne County, Tennessee.32 She married(2) John BRUNTY before 1870. She married(3) her first cousin Samuel PROFFITT (1834-1884) on 18 December 1883 in Tazewell County, Virginia. The names of her parents are seen as Austin and Patsy.33 Malinda may have died between 1883-1888.

The pre-1850 census analysis
vafranklin
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From 1810 until 1840 we see David and his brother Austin living in Franklin County, Virginia. It is important to know that while both PROFFITT families lived in Franklin County there was no change in the boundaries which were nearly the same as they are today. Franklin County was formed from Bedford and Henry Counties in 1785-1786. In 1844 Franklin gained a small area from Patrick County, the little peninsula-like piece on the southern border. In the 1870s a tiny bit of Floyd County, where Floyd, Patrick, and Franklin join, went to Franklin County. See Virginia Formation Maps

In 1820 both David and Austin had been married 7 years and each had two children. And this is where I thought things would get complicated. My 3rd great-grandmother Rachel was born about 1817 and “fit” into both households.

1820censusproffit
DAVID – 1820 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Franklin

1820 U.S. Federal Census34
Franklin County, Virginia
Name: David Proffit
Enumeration Date: August 7, 1820
Free White Persons – Males – 26 thru 44: 1 (David)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 10: 2 (Esther and Rachel)
Free White Persons – Females – 16 thru 25: 1 (Sarah)
Number of Persons – Engaged in Commerce: 1
Free White Persons – Under 16: 2
Free White Persons – Over 25: 1
Total Free White Persons: 4
Total All Persons – White, Slaves, Colored, Other: 4

1820censusaustin
AUSTIN – 1820 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Franklin [ancestry.com]
1820 U.S. Federal Census35
Franklin County, Virginia
Name: Austin Proffit
Free White Persons – Males – Under 10: 1 (Harvey)
Free White Persons – Males – 16 thru 25: 1 (Austin)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 10: 1 (Delilah)
Free White Persons – Females – 16 thru 25: 1 (Patsy)
Free White Persons – Females – 45 and older: 1 (poss. Austin’s mother Betsey)
Number of Persons – Engaged in Agriculture: 1
Free White Persons – Under 16: 2
Free White Persons – Over 25: 1
Total Free White Persons: 5
Total All Persons – White, Slaves, Colored, Other: 5
1 person engaged in agriculture

Note: David had two daughters, Esther and Rachel, while Austin had only one, Delilah.

By 1830 David and Sarah had 3 boys and 3 girls; Austin and Patsy had 4 boys and 2 girls. The age ranges of the children varied, showing some as younger or older than in 1820.

1830censusproffit
DAVID & AUSTIN – 1830 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Franklin

1830 U.S. Federal Census36
Franklin County, Virginia
Name: David Proffit
Free White Persons – Males – Under 5: 1 (David Jr.)
Free White Persons – Males – 5 thru 9: 2 (Preston and Austin)
Free White Persons – Males – 40 thru 49: 1 (David)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 5: 1 (Lucinda)
Free White Persons – Females – 5 thru 9: 1 (Rachel)
Free White Persons – Females – 10 thru 14: 1 (Esther)
Free White Persons – Females – 30 thru 39: 1 (Sarah)
Free White Persons – Under 20: 6
Free White Persons – 20 thru 49: 2
Total Free White Persons: 8
Total – All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 8

1830 U.S. Federal Census37
Franklin County, Virginia
Name: Austin Proffit
Free White Persons – Males – 5 thru 9: 2 (son b. bet. 1821-1825 & Elisha)
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 14: 1 (Lewis)
Free White Persons – Males – 15 thru 19: 1 (Harvey)
Free White Persons – Males – 30 thru 39: 1 (Austin)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 5: 1 (daughter b. bet. 1826-1830)
Free White Persons – Females – 10 thru 14: 1 (Delilah)
Free White Persons – Females – 30 thru 39: 1 (Patsy)
Free White Persons – Females – 50 thru 59: 1 (poss. Austin’s mother Betsey)
Free White Persons – Under 20: 6
Free White Persons – 20 thru 49: 2
Total Free White Persons: 9
Total – All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 9

David’s daughters Esther and Rachel and Austin’s daughter Delilah are still at home.

I believe that the older woman seen in Austin’s household in 1820 and 1830 was his mother Betsey. Austin’s parents-in-law were both living at this time. Elizabeth “Betsey” ROBERTSON most likely died between 1830-1840 in Franklin County, Virginia, as she is no longer reflected in the 1840 census.

By 1840 David and Sarah had 2 more sons and a daughter and their oldest daughter Esther had married. Austin and Patsy also had 2 more sons and a daughter and their oldest son had married. And this is where it becomes problematic. Their daughter Delilah married in 1836; Austin was seen as surety. However, a female of her age appears to be at home in 1840. It is not known how her marriage ended but “Delia Proffet” was seen marrying in 1841. My dilemma was that without evaluating the information on all persons in each household it looked like both David and Austin could have been the father of Rachel who married Jordan N. PETERS until 1841.

1840censusdavid
DAVID – 1840 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Franklin

1840 U.S. Federal Census38
Franklin County, Virginia
Name: David Proffett
Free White Persons – Males – Under 5: 2 (Samuel and Edward)
Free White Persons – Males – 5 thru 9: 2 (David and Preston)
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 14: 1 (Austin)
Free White Persons – Males – 40 thru 49: 1 (David)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 5: 1 (Statira)
Free White Persons – Females – 5 thru 9: 1 (unknown female)
Free White Persons – Females – 15 thru 19: 1 (Rachel)
Free White Persons – Females – 30 thru 39: 1 (Sarah)
Free White Persons – Under 20: 8
Free White Persons – 20 thru 49: 2
Total Free White Persons: 10
Total All Persons – Free White, Free Colored, Slaves: 10

1840censusaustin
AUSTIN – 1840 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Franklin [ancestry.com]
1840 U.S. Federal Census39
Franklin County, Virginia
Name: Austin Proffet
Free White Persons – Males – Under 5: 1 (Joseph)
Free White Persons – Males – 5 thru 9: 1 (son b. 1831-1835)
Free White Persons – Males – 15 thru 19: 1 (Elisha)
Free White Persons – Males – 20 thru 29:    1 (Lewis)
Free White Persons – Males – 60 thru 69: 1 (Austin, wrong column for age?)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 5: 1 (Malinda)
Free White Persons – Females – 10 thru 14: 1 (daughter b. bet. 1826-1830)
Free White Persons – Females – 20 thru 29: 1 (??Delilah, md.(1) 1836; md.(2) 1841)
Free White Persons – Females – 40 thru 49: 1 (Patsy)
Persons Employed in Agriculture: 3
No. White Persons over 20 Who Cannot Read and Write: 2
Free White Persons – Under 20: 5
Free White Persons – 20 thru 49: 3
Total Free White Persons: 9
Total All Persons – Free White, Free Colored, Slaves: 9

Esther marries with David Proffitt being her surety and Delilah marries with Austin being her surety. Rachel is still at home with her father David in 1840 and would marry in 1841. A young woman in the 20-29 years age range is in Austin’s household suggesting a possible end of the marriage for Delilah who would marry again in 1841.

I hope that you have been able to follow how I studied the two family groups to come to the conclusion that my 3rd great-grandmother Rachel PROFFITT was the daughter of David PROFFITT and his wife Sarah COCKRAM.

Rachel’s father David Proffit from 1850 until his death

During the 1840s both David and Austin moved their families a little bit farther west. David ended up in Russell County, Virginia, while Austin crossed the state line to live in Hancock County, Tennessee, in 1850 and 1860. Austin was in Lee County, Virginia, in 1870, and died in Maiden Spring, Tazewell County, Virginia, in 1871.

Tnhancock
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varussell
This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. Accessed online: https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/File:Varussell.jpg
1850censusdavid
1850 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Russell

The 1850 census listing shows that David was born in Amherst County and his wife and three children still living at home were born in Franklin County.40 The move was made after David’s youngest daughter was born. I checked the entire agricultural schedule for Russell County for 1850 through 1870 and found only David’s son Austin in 1860 and 1870. David did not own land in Russell County. This is also seen in the 1860 and 1870 censuses where the column for real estate is blank.41,42

1860censusdavid
1860 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Russell

In 1860 David and Sally were in Rose Dale, Russell County. In their household was also a granddaughter Mary STEVENS, daughter of their oldest daughter Hessie.

Sarah “Sally” COCKRAM died between 1860-1870 most likely in the Rose Dale area of Russell County, Virginia, where she had been living with her husband David in 1860.

1870censusdavid1
1870 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Russell (part 1)
1870censusdavid2
1870 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Russell (part 2)

By 1870 David had moved in with his oldest son Austin (named after his grandfather) who lived in the Elk Garden Township in Russell County. Austin had 20 acres of improved land in 1860 and this increased to 25 acres of improved and 120 acres of woodland in 1870.

David PROFFITT died between 1870-1880 most likely in Elk Garden, Russell County, Virginia, where he was living in 1870.

This Post was Updated on 27 November 2022Missing source citations were added, images were scaled, and some corrections were made to the text and format.

© 20142022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. “North Carolina, Death Certificates, 1909-1975,” index and images, Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/1121), citing original data: North Carolina State Board of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics. North Carolina Death Certificates. Microfilm S.123. Rolls 19-242, 280, 313-682, 1040-1297. North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, North Carolina., Forsyth, 1942, February, Certificate of Death 153, Nannie Ellen Cates (accessed 20 June 2014). 
  2. “Marriage bond register, 1786-1853; loose marriage bonds and licenses, 1785-1900,” database with images, FamilySearch, citing microfilm of original records at the Franklin County Courthouse in Rocky Mount, Virginia, and at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia., Film 1977991, DGS 7490230, Marriage bonds 1813-1818, image 45 and 46 of 880, 1813 David Profit and Elisha Rakes bond for the marriage of David Profit and Sarah Cockram. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99ZG-84FM?i=45&cat=765574 : accessed 18 June 2022). 
  3. Ibid., Film 1977991, DGS 7490230, Marriage bonds 1813-1818, image 43 and 44 of 880, 1813 Austin Prophet and Elisha Rakes bond for the marriage of Austin Prophet and Patsey Rakes. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89ZG-84KZ?i=43&cat=765574 : accessed 18 June 2022). 
  4. Chancery Records of Virginia, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia, Local Government Records Collection, Virginia Memory (https://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/), Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, John Proffit vs Heirs of David Proffit 1810-005. (https://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1810-005 : accessed 31 October 2013). 
  5. Virginia. Commissioner of the Revenue (Amherst County), “Personal property tax lists, 1782-1851,” (browse-only images), FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/775689), citing microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film 2024457, DGS 7846299, Personal property tax lists, 1782-1803, image 195 of 615, 1790 PPT List, David Proffit and son Austin 2 1 0 4. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSQF-2Q6M?cat=775689: accessed 13 November 2022). 
  6. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853” (browse-only images), FamilySearch, citing microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 368 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 61, 22 Nov 1790, Augustine Proffit and Elizabeth Robertson, father David Proffit, father Arthur Robertson, witnesses Charles Lain, Wm Loving Jr., Randolph Profitt, Thomas Robertson, and Arthur Robertson (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9XF-NCWQ?i=344&cc=4149585 : accessed 8 November 2022). 
  7. “Virginia, Wills and Probate Records, 1652-1983,” (index and images), Ancestry, citing original data of Virginia County, District, and Probate Courts, Amherst Will Books, Vol 3-4, 1786-1810, image 538 of 673, Will Book 4, page 366, Letters of Administration for the estate of David Prophet (accessed 21 July 2018). 
  8. “Virginia, Wills and Probate Records, 1652-1983,” Amherst County, Will Books, Vol 3-4, 1786-1810, image 412-413 of 673, Will Book 4, page 117-118, Inventory of the estate of David Profitt (accessed 21 July 2018). 
  9. Ibid., Amherst County, Will Books, Vol 3-4, 1786-1810, image 539-540 of 673, Book 4, page 368-369, 20 Jun 1803 Betsy Proffitt named the guardian of her children David and Augustine (accessed 6 November 2022). 
  10. 1810 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7613/), citing Third Census of the United States, 1810 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C. NARA microfilm publication M252, 71 rolls, Roll 68, FHL Film 0181428, image 608, Virginia, Franklin County, page 315 (stamped), line 13, Betsey Prophet (accessed 7 February 2020). 
  11. “Marriage bond register, 1786-1853; loose marriage bonds and licenses, 1785-1900,” Film 1977991, DGS 7490230, Marriage bonds 1813-1818, image 43 and 44 of 880, 1813 Austin Prophet and Elisha Rakes bond for the marriage of Austin Prophet and Patsey Rakes. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89ZG-84KZ?i=43&cat=765574 : accessed 18 June 2022). 
  12. Ibid., Film 1977991, DGS 7490230, Marriage bonds 1813-1818, image 45 and 46 of 880, 1813 David Profit and Elisha Rakes bond for the marriage of David Profit and Sarah Cockram. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99ZG-84FM?i=45&cat=765574 : accessed 18 June 2022). 
  13. Ibid., Film 1977996, DGS 7490235, Marriage bonds 1835-1838, images 202-203 of 784, 19 Aug 1835, Owen Stephens and David Prophet went bond for the marriage of Owen Stephens and Hessie Prophet (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99ZG-HWWS?cat=765574 : accessed 13 November 2022). 
  14. “War of 1812 Pension Files,” database and images, Fold3, citing “War of 1812 Pension and Bounty land Warrant Application Files,” compiled ca. 1871–1900, documenting the period 1812–ca.1900, National Archives, Washington, D.C., original data from The National Archives (http://www.archives.gov), RG15-1812PB-Bx2693, National Archives Catalog ID: 564415, service of Jordan N. Peters (Pvt Capt Robert Hairston Va Militia, War of 1812), Jordan N. Peters (page 24) he states that he married on 8 December 1840. On page 18 the date is 8 December 1844. On page 2 the year of marriage is 1843. (https://www.fold3.com/image/642937397 : accessed 27 March 2022). 
  15. “Marriage bond register, 1786-1853; loose marriage bonds and licenses, 1785-1900,” Film 1977998; DGS 7490240, Marriage bonds 1842-1844, images 809-812 of 879, 14 Sep 1844, Austin Profit and John A. Newberry went bond on the marriage of Austin Profit to Viney Newberry. Parent of both gave their permission. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89ZG-H49J?i=809&cat=765574 : accessed 9 November 2022). 
  16. Rena Worthen & Barbara Reininger (co-project), “Index to Marriages of Floyd County, Virginia 1831-1940 (and few others too),” index and images, part of the Floyd County, Virginia, The USGenWeb Project online https://sites.rootsweb.com/~vafloyd/floyd.htm, citing the images of Floyd Co., VA marriages downloaded by Rena Worthen from the Library of Virginia Microform indexed by Barbara Reininger., FCVA1844_13: Preston Proffitt and David Proffitt went bond on the marriage of Preston Proffitt and Martha Wright on 1 Jun 1844. (https://sites.rootsweb.com/~vafloyd/Mar%20FCVA1844/FCVA1844_13.jpg : accessed 13 November 2022). 
  17. “Virginia, U.S., Death Registers, 1853-1911, ” index and images, Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/250856:62152), citing original data: Virginia, Death Registers, 1853–1911 from the Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia., Russell County Register of Death 1887, no page number, line 47, David Profit, 27 Dec 1887 in Lebanon, age 60, father David Profit. (https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/530111:62152 : accessed 9 November 2022). 
  18. “Marriage registers, 1800-1920 ; index to marriages, 1800-1939,” browse-only images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/473283), citing microfilm of original records at the Tazewell County Courthouse in Tazewell, Virginia, Film 34214 Item 4, DGS 4284960, Marriage register no. 2 1845-1858, page 18, Edward Prophet and Sarah Keen January 6th 1848 by William McGuire. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-6LC9-JDD?i=395 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  19. “Death registers, 1853-1906 (Virginia)” browse-only images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/780106), Virginia Bureau of Vital Statistics, citing microfilm of the original records at the Virginia State Library at Richmond, Virginia., Film 2048586, DGS 4225410, Tazewell County, 1853-1896, image 634 of 653, Death Register 1894, no page number, line 55, Edward Proffitt, 18 Feb 1894, brain fever, parents David and Sally, informant son David (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6XCZ-Q6B?i=633&cat=780106 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  20. “Marriage registers, 1800-1920 ; index to marriages, 1800-1939,” Film 34214 Item 5, DGS 4284960, Register of marriages no. 3 1853-1920, page 65, line 127, Samuel Proffit and Malinda Brunty, parents David and Sally Proffit, parents Osten and Patsy Proffit (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-6LC9-6K5?i=486&cat=473283 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  21. “Marriage registers, 1853-1908, 1936-1951; general index to marriage licenses, 1853-1930, 1971-1973,” searchable images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/1115900), citing microfilm of original records at the Russell County Courthouse in Lebanon, Virginia, Film 33850 Item 3, DGS 7579055, Register of marriages, v. 2, 1853 (Apr.)-1908 (Dec.)., image 562 of 734, page 77, line 92, 24 Aug 1888, Saml Profet and Elizabeth Hufman, parents David and Christopher (no surnames), married by Wm Hess (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99XF-2XG4?i=561&cat=1115900 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  22. “Marriage registers, 1853-1908, 1936-1951; general index to marriage licenses, 1853-1930, 1971-1973,” Film 33850 Item 3, DGS 7579055, Register of marriages, v. 2, 1853 (Apr.)-1908 (Dec.)., image 489 of 734, page 4, line 28, 13 Sep 1855, Jesse R. Musick and Statina Proffett, parents Jas. & Margaret Musick, parents David & Sarah Proffett, md by E. Farrell (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-2XGX?i=488&cat=1115900 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  23. “Kentucky, U.S., Death Records, 1852-1965”, Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/1222/), citing Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, Frankfort, Kentucky, Death Records, 1852-1910 > all counties > Film 994044: Knox, Larue, Laurel, Lawrence > image 712 of 737 > Death Register 1974, line 34, 15 Oct 1874 Statira Music, 34, child bearing, daughter of David & Sally Prophet both born VA (https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/1222/images/KYVR_994044-0712 : accessed 19 June 2014). 
  24. “Index to Marriages of Floyd County, Virginia 1831-1940 (and few others too),” FCVA1835_34: 2 Dec 1835, Henry Proffit and William Barton went bond for the marriage of Henry Proffit and Sarah Jane Barton. (https://sites.rootsweb.com/~vafloyd/Mar%20FCVA1835/FCVA1835_34.jpg : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  25. “Marriage registers, 1853-1908, 1936-1951; general index to marriage licenses, 1853-1930, 1971-1973,” Film 33850 Item 3, DGS 7579055, Register of marriages, v. 2, 1853 (Apr.)-1908 (Dec.)., image 531 of 734, page 46, line 100,17 Nov 1876, H. G. Prophet and Rosanah Turner, married by Wm Hess. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9XF-2XRL?i=530&cat=1115900 : accessed 13 November 2022). 
  26. “Marriage bond register, 1786-1853; loose marriage bonds and licenses, 1785-1900,” Film 1977996, DGS 7490235, Marriage bonds 1835-1838, images 395-396 of 784, 11 Jul 1836 Berry Wood and Austin Prophet went bond for the marriage of Berry Wood and Delilah Prophet (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9ZG-H77P?i=395&cat=765574 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  27. “Marriage records (Hawkins County, Tennessee), 1789-1964; index, 1789-1964,” searchable images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/1410937), citing microfilm of original records at the Hawkins County Archival Project in Rogersville, Tennessee, Film # 004538753, image 1393-1394 of 3035, William Hicks and Delila Proffit marriage license 16 Jun 1841 and minister return 17 instance. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939Z-Y3YJ-X?cc=1619127 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  28. “Marriage registers, 1791-1923; index to births, marriages, deaths 1853-1912” (browse-only images), FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/1155418), citing microfilm of original records at the Patrick County Courthouse in Stuart, Virginia, Film 33351, DGS 7579037, Marriage register, no. 1, 1791-1822 — Marriage register, no. 2, 1822-1853 — Register of marriages, no. 3, 1853-1912; Marriage register, no. 2, 1822-1853, image 144 of 457 (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99XF-RN93?i=143&cc=4149585&cat=1155418 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  29. Find A Grave, database and images, (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/124343563/lewis-proffit: accessed 14 November 2022), memorial page for Lewis Proffit (4 Aug 1818–10 Oct 1898), Find a Grave Memorial ID 124343563, citing Fillmore Cemetery, Fillmore, Andrew County, Missouri, USA; Maintained by Miss BeeHaven (contributor 48748561). Photo of the marker by g_w_walker (contributor 48581776) confirms the dates listed. Dates have not been confirmed with records. 
  30. “Marriage bond register, 1786-1853; loose marriage bonds and licenses, 1785-1900,” Film 1977996, DGS 7490235, Marriage bonds 1835-1838, images 236-241 of 784, 22 May 1845 Elisha Proffit and John Underwood went bond for the marriage of Elisha Proffit and Malinda Underwood; 21 May 1845 Samuel and Norah Underwood authorization for marriage license of Elisha Proffit and Malinda Underwood; 20 May 1845 Austin Proffet’s authorization for marriage license of Elisha Proffet and Malinda Underwood (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9ZG-HC44?i=236&cat=765574 : accessed 14 November 2022). 
  31. “Missouri Death Certificates, 1910 – 1971,” database with images, Missouri Digital Heritage (https://s1.sos.mo.gov/Records/Archives/ArchivesMvc/DeathCertificates/), citing original data: Missouri Death Certificates, Missouri State Archives, Buchanan, 1911, Certificate of Death 13472, Joseph Proffit. (http://www.sos.mo.gov/images/archives/deathcerts/1911/1911_00013442.PDF : accessed 25 November 2014). 
  32. “Tennessee, U.S., Marriage Records, 1780-2002,” (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/1169/), citing “Tennessee State Marriages, 1780-2002” microfilm from the Tennessee State Library and Archives, Nashville, Tennessee. Claiborne > 1838 Jun-1868 Sep: Marriages 2-3 > image 719 of 857 > page 44, first entry, 10 May 1854, marriage license to David Brooks for his intermarriage with Malind. Proffet (accessed 14 November 2022). 
  33. See Note #20, supra. 
  34. 1820 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7734/), citing Fourth Census of the United States, 1820 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M33, 142 rolls, NARA Roll: M33_136, image 179, Virginia, Franklin County, page 161 (stamped), line 15, David Proffit (accessed 7 February 2020). 
  35. Ibid., NARA Roll: M33_136, image: 177, Virginia, Franklin County, page 159 (stamped), line 22, Austin Proffit (accessed 29 October 2013). 
  36. 1830 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8058/), citing Fifth Census of the United States, 1830 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C. NARA microfilm publication M19, 201 rolls, Nara Roll M19_192, FHL Film: 0029671, Virginia, Franklin County, page 86 (double-page spread), line 18, David Proffitt (accessed 7 February 2020). 
  37. Ibid., Nara Roll M19_192, FHL Film: 0029671, Virginia, Franklin County, page 86 (double-page spread), line 16, Austin Proffitt (accessed 7 February 2020). 
  38. 1840 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8057/), citing Sixth Census of the United States, 1840 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M704, 580 rolls, NARA Roll: M704_559, FHL Film: 0029686, Virginia, Franklin County, page 308 (double-page spread), line 13, David Proffett (accessed 7 February 2020). 
  39. Ibid., Roll: 704_555; FHL Film: 0029686, Virginia, Franklin County, page 308 (stamped, double-page spread), line 6, Austin Proffet (accessed 9 November 2022). 
  40. 1850 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8054/), citing Seventh Census of the United States, 1850 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M432, 1009 rolls, Roll: M432_975, Virginia, Russell County, District 54, page 244, sheet 339B (stamped), household 1678-1678, lines 31-35, David Proffit (accessed 23 October 2013). 
  41. 1860 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7667/), citing Eighth Census of the United States, 1860 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M653, 1,438 rolls, Roll: M653_1376, Family History Library Film 805376, Virginia, Russell County, page 114, household 766-766, lines 24-26, David Proffitt (accessed 9 November 2022). 
  42. 1870 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7163/), citing Ninth Census of the United States, 1870 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T132, 13 rolls, Roll: M593_167; Virginia, Russell County, Elk Garden, page 4-5, sheet 350B and 351A, lines 37-40 and 1-8, household 26-26, Austin Proffitt with father David in household. 

52 Ancestors: #41 Sally CRISP – Parentage PROVEN!!

“The challenge: have one blog post each week devoted to a specific ancestor. It could be a story, a biography, a photograph, an outline of a research problem — anything that focuses on one ancestor.”

This is entry #41 in Amy Johnson Crow’s Challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

#41 Sally CRISP, daughter of William and Lucy CRISP

For 175 years the names of the children of William and Lucy CRISP remained hidden in the Chancery Records of Nelson County, Virginia.

chancery“The Chancery Records Index (CRI) is a result of archival processing and indexing projects overseen by the Library of Virginia (LVA) and funded, in part, by the Virginia Circuit Court Records Preservation Program (CCRP). Each of Virginia’s circuit courts created chancery records that contain considerable historical and genealogical information. Because the records rely so heavily on testimony from witnesses, they offer a unique glimpse into the lives of Virginians from the early 18th century through the First World War.”1

Early Crisp Research

Virginia J. Murphy, author of The Purvis Family, by George! (Manchester, Tennessee : V.J. Murphy, 1990), sent some information she had on the CRISP family by email in July 2000. David Howard was included in the conversation. Virginia shared bits and pieces she had taken from Nelson County deed books. Virginia, David, and I looked at marriages of CRISP individuals in Amherst and Nelson counties from 1795 to 1820. We came up with a list of six proven children and one possible child, my 4th great-grandmother Sally CRISP, for William and Lucy CRISP. There were a couple we weren’t certain about and didn’t include on the list.

Fourteen years later…

When I learned about the Chancery Records on the Library of Virginia’s  Virginia Memory on the Library of Virginia’s site, I didn’t immediately check for records in Nelson County. Mostly due to the fact that Sally CRISP married in Amherst County in 1803 and I never associated her closely with Nelson County, formed in 1807 from Amherst. Last May I finally searched and found case files dated between 1809 and 1851 that prove William and Lucy CRISP were the parents of eleven children.

eleventh
…the said James Wright is entitled to one eleventh part as a distributed of the estate of Wm Crisp Dec?d by an intermarriage with one of the daughters of the said Dec’d…

I got in touch with David Howard and Robert N. Grant, a Wright researcher, about the discovery but have not been able to make contact with Virginia J. Murphy.2

It took a lot of time to read through the records and find a document that actually lists 10 of the eleven children…3

10children
…the said William & Lucy Crisp dec’d had several children who are the persons entitled in revision to the aforesaid slave – to wit, John Crisp, Simon Crisp, William Crisp, Elizabeth Crisp, Mary Crisp, Sally Crisp, Frances Crisp, Lucy Crisp, Stella Crisp & Catherine Crisp

and then continues to list the names of the daughters’ husbands.4

crispmarriages
Charles Purvis md. Mary; Richard Bryant md. Catherine; Thomas Melton md. Stella; Land (sic) S. Going md. Sally; Thomas Harrison md. Elizabeth; Thomas Alford md. Frances; and James Wright md. Lucy

Peggy, the eleventh and youngest child, died before September 1815. She is documented in the 1814 case file as being underage and in the 1820 case file in a document dated September 1815 in which her mother Lucy was seen as “admr of Peggy dec’d” or administratrix of Peggy’s estate.5,6

We’d gotten seven of them right! Mary (proven by consent), Lucy (proven by consent), Frances (proven by her widower Thomas & her sons John C. & Wm R. Alford’s attempt to get her part in Wm Crisp’s estate after the death of Lucy), William (proven by land deed), Peggy (proven by administration), John (proven by association*), and Sally (not proven, assumed).
* John CRISP married Milly ALFORD and Frances CRISP married Thomas ALFORD. Family tradition is that the CRISPs and the ALFORDs had been brothers and sisters.

The names found in the chancery records prove the parentage of ELEVEN children. The four other children who can now be included in the count are Stilly, Elizabeth, Catherine, and Simon. Better yet, the records tell the stories of the persons involved! I would love to be able to give all the details here but Sally is the one in the spotlight. The others will have to wait their turn. And I need some time to transcribe and arrange the circa 250 images in chronological order. If you are curious or can’t wait, go for it! Update (30 September 2022): There are also records in Lynchburg City for this family, i.e. many more images to view and transcribe.

Sally and her siblings

My 4th great-grandmother Sally CRISP was the daughter of William CRISP who died about October 1806 in Nelson County, Virginia, and his wife Lucy who died before 29 June 1818. It’s difficult to write about Sally’s life without giving a short summary of her siblings, who must have influenced her life as she did theirs.

Although it is now known that there were eleven children, we can only calculate their order of birth. Four of Sally’s siblings married before her. However, she may have been the oldest as she was seen in the 1820 and 1830 census as being older than her husband Landon S. GOWING who was born about 1777.

◉ Sally CRISP born Cal 1770 in Virginia
◉ Sib 2: Mary “Polly” CRISP (1775-1830) born Cal 1775. Polly married Charles PURVIS (1763-1853) on 1 August 1795 in Amherst County, Virginia.7 She may have died before 1830 as Charles PURVIS is seen in the 1830 and 1840 censuses without an older woman in his household. Polly and Charles were the parents of eight children.
◉ Sib 3: Frances CRISP (1775-1836) born Cal 1775. Frances married Thomas ALFORD on 10 October 1795 in Amherst County, Virginia.8 She died on 26 October 1836 in Bedford County, Tennessee. Frances and Thomas had two sons, William R. and John C. who are documented in the chancery records concerning the estate of Thomas’ father William ALFORD.
◉ Sib 4: John CRISP (1778- ) born Cal 1778. John married Milly ALFORD (? -1809) on 16 December 1799 in Amherst County, Virginia.9 John died before 1839 and his sons Anthony Jefferson and William Madison are mentioned in the 1839 case file.
◉ Sib 5: Lucy CRISP (1780-1839) born Cal 1780. Lucy CRISP married James WRIGHT (d. 1824) on 1 February 1800 in Amherst County, Virginia.10 She died before 1839 and her children George WRIGHT, Mahala COVENT, and Elizabeth SKIDMORE are mentioned in the 1839 case file.
◉ Sib 6: William CRISP born unknown. He was seen as the son of William and Lucy and died without issue before 1839 per the case file of that year.
◉ Sib 7: Stilla B. “Stilly” CRISP (1784-1850) was born about 1784. Stilly married Thomas MELTON ( -1829) on 1 November 1804 in Amherst County, Virginia.11 She died after October 1850. Per early census listings, she may have had at least 8 children.
◉ Sib 8: Elizabeth “Betsy” CRISP (1786- ) born before 1786. Betsy married Thomas HARRISON on 10 April 1820 in Nelson County, Virginia.12 Betsy and Thomas both died before 1839 without issue.
◉ Sib 9: Catherine CRISP (1789- ) born Cal 1789. Catherine married Richard BRYANT  on 11 November 1809 in Nelson County, Virginia.13 Catherine became the stepmother of 5 children and the mother of 4 children per the 1810-1830 census.
◉ Sib 10: Simon CRISP (1790-1850) was born about 1790. Simon married Susan FLOYD (1805-1874) on 15 September 1828 in Nelson County, Virginia.14 He died between 1850 and 1860. His only child, a son William C. CRISP died in 1862 leaving no issue.
◉ Sib 11: Peggy CRISP was born after 1790 and died before September 1815. She was never married.

1829marriage
1829 Marriage Bond (photocopy courtesy of Geraldine Dempsey Workman)

Sally CRISP married Landon S. GOWING on 17 January 1803 in Amherst County, Virginia.15 Nearly four years later, about October 1806, her father William CRISP died. Her mother Lucy is seen on the 1810 census with her unmarried children: Simon, Elizabeth, and Peggy.16

Sally’s husband Landon was not a head of household in 1810. Without the names of members of households on the pre-1850 census, we can only speculate about where Landon and Sally may have been. What we do know is that Sally did not have any children born between 1803 and 1809 who lived. This has been determined by analyzing the 1820 census.17

1820censusgowing
1820 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Nelson [ancestry.com]
1820 U.S. Federal Census
Nelson County, Virginia
Landon S. Gowing
Enumeration Date: August 7, 1820
Free White Persons – Males – 26 thru 44: 1 (Landon)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 10: 2 (Clementine and Martissa C.)
Free White Persons – Females – 10 thru 15: 1 (Emmeline)
Free White Persons – Females – 45 and over : 1 (Sally)
Number of Persons – Engaged in Agriculture: 1
Free White Persons – Under 16: 3
Free White Persons – Over 25: 2
Total Free White Persons: 5
Total All Persons – White, Slaves, Colored, Other: 5
Note: No sons listed. Sally and Landon were married 17 yrs at the time of census.

Did she miscarry, give birth to a stillborn child, or have babies who died young? It seems strange that she didn’t have any children in the first 6-7 years of her marriage and then had three daughters spaced about two years apart.

◉ Emmeline born about 1810, died aft. 1880
◉ Martha C. “Martissa” born about 1812, died aft. 1880
◉ Clementine M. born about 1814, died aft. 1880

By the birth of her third daughter Clementine, Sally was most likely close to 45 years old and coming to the end of her childbearing years. A few years later, before the end of June 1818, her mother Lucy died.

Towards the end of the 1820s, Sally’s daughters were courting and marrying. Her oldest, Emmeline married William Dison LAWHORNE on 16 June 1828.18 Her youngest, Clementine married Seaton Y. DEMPSEY on 3 January 1829.19 Both marriages took place in Amherst County, Virginia.

In 1830 Landon, Sally, and their middle daughter Martissa were living in Amherst County near their daughter Clementine and her husband Seaton Y. DEMPSEY. Landon was in the 50 & under 60 age group, Martissa in the 15 & under 20, and Sally was in the 60 & under 70.20 As in 1820, the listing consistently shows that Sally was older than Landon.

From the chancery records, I learned that Sally must have died between 1830 and 1838. Was she living when her middle child Martissa married Wyatt F. LILLY (1811-1880) on 29 May 1833 in Amherst County, Virginia?21 Or did Martissa care for her mother, being the last child to leave home, and married only after her mother died? Further study of the chancery records may help to narrow this range. Amherst’s chancery records, which are not online, may be hiding more information on her and her family. Update (October 2022): Digital images for Amherst are available for the years 1779-1869.

This Post was Updated on 9 October 2022Missing source citations were added, images were scaled, and some corrections were made to the text and format.

© 20142022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. Introduction to the Chancery Records Index on the Library of Virginia website (https://www.virginiamemory.com/collections/chancery/ : accessed 10 October 2014). 
  2. Chancery Records of Virginia, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia, Local Government Records Collection, Virginia Memory (https://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/), Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, Thomas Hawkins vs. James Wright etc., 1809-010. (https://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/full_case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1809-010#img : accessed 30 September 2014). 
  3. Ibid., Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, Rives & Murphy vs Thomas Harrison etc., 1839-006, image 3, left page. (http://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1839-006 : accessed 19 May 2014). 
  4. Ibid., image 3, right page. 
  5. Ibid., Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, Charles Purvis vs. Peggy Crisp etc., 1814-001. (http://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1814-001: accessed 19 May 2014). 
  6. Ibid., Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, Charles Purvis & WIFE vs. ADMX OF Peggy Crisp ETC, 1820-022. (https://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/full_case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1820-022#img: accessed 19 May 2014). 
  7. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853” (browse-only images), <i>FamilySearch</i>, citing microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 388 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 102, 1 Aug 1795, Charles Purvis and Mary Crisp both of Amherst parish, Crisp father personally (sic) gave consent, William Crisp and Reuben Crawford sureties. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-NZF8?i=387&cat=680855 : accessed 7 October 2022). 
  8. Ibid., Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 104, 10 Oct 1795, Thomas Alford and Frances Crisp, John Crisp brother, securities John Crip, W.R. Crawford, and Saml. Meredith. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-NZFH?i=389&cat=680855 : accessed 7 October 2022). 
  9. Ibid., Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 137, 16 Dec 1799, John Crisp and Milly Alford, securities John Camm and S. Garland . (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9XF-NZQR?i=422&cat=680855 : accessed 7 October 2022). 
  10. Ibid., Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 140, James Wright and Lucy Crisp, parents of bride William Crisp and Lucy Crisp, securities John Crisp, S. Garland, and Lucy Crisp. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9XF-NC9C?i=424&cat=680855 : accessed 7 October 2022). 
  11. Ibid., Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 179, 1 Nov 1804, Thomas Melton & Stilly B. Crisp, consent John & Mary Melton, consent William & Lucy Crisp, sec. Wm Crisp Jr., John Wright, John Melton Jr. & Jno Crisp. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9XF-NZ9J?i=465&cat=680855 : accessed 7 October 2022). 
  12. “Marriage registers, 1808-1985 ; indexes to marriage registers, 1808-1985,” browse-only images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/361788), citing microfilm of original records and photocopies at the Nelson County Courthouse in Lovingston, Virginia, and photostat copies at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film, 32714, DGS 7724886, Marriage register 1808-1878 (photostat copies), image 216 of 402, A list of marriage licenses issued of [from] the clerks office, page 14, 10 Apr 1820, Thomas Harrison and Betsy Crisp, security Landon S. Gowing, married by James Boyd. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C9BK-G77C?i=215&cc=2134304&cat=361788 : accessed 29 September 2022). 
  13. Ibid., Marriage register 1808-1878 (photostat copies), image 204 of 402, A list of marriage licenses issued of [from] the clerks office, page 2, 11 Nov 1809, Richard Bryant and C. Crisp, John Crisp security, married by William Wright. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C9BK-G7S3?i=203&cc=2134304&cat=361788 : accessed 7 OCtober 2022). 
  14. Ibid., Marriage register 1808-1878 (photostat copies), image 226 of 402, A list of marriage licenses issued of [from] the clerks office, page 24, 15 Sep 1828, Simon Crisp and Susan Floyd, security [illegible]. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C9BK-G7SD?i=225&cc=2134304&cat=361788 : accessed 7 OCtober 2022). 
  15. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853,” Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 450 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 163, 5th entry, 17 Jan 1803 Landon Going and Sally Crisp, Philip Going and S. Garland in the column for security and witnesses. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-NZ6G?i=449 : accessed 11 January 2022). 
  16. 1810 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7613/), citing Third Census of the United States, 1810 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C. NARA microfilm publication M252, 71 rolls, Roll 70, FHL Film 0181430, image: Vam252_70-0124, Virginia, Nelson County, page 682, line 11, Lucy Crisp (accessed 10 October 2014). 
  17. 1820 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7734/), citing Fourth Census of the United States, 1820 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M33, 142 rolls, NARA Roll: M33_130, image: 371, Virginia, Nelson County, page 194A, line 15, Landon S. Gowing (accessed 19 May 2014). 
  18. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853,” Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 586 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 298, 7th entry, 5 Jul 1828, Dison Langhorne and Emmeline Gowing, Landon S. Gowing – father, witnesses: Robert Langhorne Jr., Robert Tinsley, Arthur B. Davies. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-NDW2?i=585 : accessed 15 May 2022). 
  19. Ibid., Amherst County Register of marriages, page 301, entry 2, 3 Jan 1829, Seaton Y Dempsey and Clementina Gowing, security and witnesses: Landon S. Gowing, Philip Smith Sr., Ro. Tinsley. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99XF-N8WJ : accessed 26 February 2022). 
  20. 1830 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8058/), citing Fifth Census of the United States, 1830 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C. NARA microfilm publication M19, 201 rolls, Nara Roll M19_194, FHL Film: 0029673, Virginia, Amherst County, page 519 (double-page spread), line 12, Landon Gowing (accessed 19 Feb 2013). 
  21. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853,” Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 611 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 323, 3rd entry, 29 May 1833, Wiatt Lily and Martha C. (Martissa) Gowing, Landon S. Gowing – father, witnesses: James Fitzgerald and Robert Tinsley. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-ND36?i=610 : accessed 15 May 2022). 

52 Ancestors: #40 Landon S. GOWING Discovered a Fountain of Youth

“The challenge: have one blog post each week devoted to a specific ancestor. It could be a story, a biography, a photograph, an outline of a research problem — anything that focuses on one ancestor.”

The last quarter begins with entry #40 in Amy Johnson Crow’s Challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

#40 Landon S. GOWING Discovered a Fountain of Youth

My 4th great-grandfather Landon S. GOWING was the son, likely the second, of Philip GOING and Judith POTTER. There are no actual documents that come right out and say this but I think I’m on the right track.

Philip GOING was born about 1745 or earlier as he was taxable in Goochland County, Virginia, in 1767 and 1769.1

The Reverend William Douglas (1708-1798) served as a minister of the Church of England in St. James Northam Parish, Goochland County, Virginia, from 1750-1777. In 1756 he began keeping a register book in which he recorded marriages, baptisms, and burials he performed. On page 87 of his register is an entry for the “first” child of Philip GOING and his wife Judith POTTER, a daughter named Molly born 4 March 1770 and baptized 27 May 1770. In the same reference book, there is a list of marriages that were not recorded by Rev. Douglas but were inferred by entries in the Birth Registry. The date given beside the names of the couple, unless otherwise specified, is the birth date of the first child shown in Douglas’ register. Several researchers, who overlooked the notation at the top of the list of marriages, have mistakenly used Molly’s date of birth as her parents’ date of marriage.2,3

Philip GOING and Judith POTTER were married before 1770, before their daughter was baptized. As the date is not noted in Douglas’ register, it likely didn’t take place in his parish.

From Goochland to Amherst

signaturegoing
December 10, 1785, Amherst, Against assessment bill.

It may have been during the years of the American Revolutionary War (19 April 1775-14 January 1784) that Philip moved his family to Amherst County, Virginia. His signature was found on a 1785 religious petition circulated in Virginia after the Revolutionary War. An image of this document was found on the Library of Congress website as part of the “American Memory” Collection of Early Virginia Religious Petitions, a collection that has now been moved. The document is now available on the Library of Virginia website.4

Philip GOING was also found on the tax lists of Amherst County from 1782 until 18075.  Amherst was formed in 1761 therefore the GOING family must have moved there from Goochland. By 1807 Nelson County was formed from about half of Amherst County. Philip is then seen in the 1810 and 1820 censuses of the new county. This time he didn’t move his family as he was living in the area of Amherst that became Nelson County.

tax
Amherst County, Virginia, Personal Property Tax List 1782-1807

In the earliest tax lists, Philip was the only GOING in Amherst until 1793 and 1794 when his son William is mentioned as being the second male over 16 in the household. This would suggest that William was his oldest son. The 1795 to 1798 lists continue to show 2 males over 16 in the household but the name of the second male is not listed. William is not seen again in the tax lists until 1800. This may be an indication of his having left the area for a while. Landon, the next son to show up on the tax lists, is likely the second male in the 1795 to 1798 households. Aaron appears in 1799-1800 while Samuel appears in 1801 until 1807. No further record of Aaron has been found.5,6

No other GOING/GOWEN/GOWING families were in the area at the time suggesting that William, Landon, Aaron, and Samuel are likely brothers and sons of Philip. [27 September 2022: At least a dozen DNA matches with persons who descend from Samuel have been found as well as two from Polly.]

Marriages of females by the same surname during the time were found for Polly and Milley.

◉ Polly GOING married Joseph HARVEY (also seen as HARVIE) on 18 December 1802 in Amherst County, Virginia. SW (Security/Witness): Philip GOING. Married by John Young.7
◉ Milley GOWING married Elijah FITZGERALD on 25 March 1806 in Amherst County, Virginia. SW: Saml. GOING (GOWING) and Saml. GARLAND.8

1790census
1790 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Amherst

This brings the total to 4 sons and 3 daughters, still 4 short of the total white persons (13) seen in the household of Philip GOING in the 1790 census above.9

1799tax
1799 Personal Property Tax List A > VA > Amherst

1799 Personal Property Tax List A10
Amherst County, Virginia
Landon Going 1000
Philip Going 1002

My fourth great-grandfather Landon S. GOWING was first seen on a Personal Property Tax List in 1798 and I estimate his year of birth at about 1777. This estimate works for the 1820 and 1830 census but Landon stopped growing older once he reached 60! In 1830 and 1840 he was enumerated in the 50-60 age group and in 1850 he was still 60 years old! Did he find a fountain of youth?

Landon marries Sally CRISP

Landon S. GOWING married Sally CRISP on 17 January 1803 in Amherst County, Virginia. Philip GOING and Samuel GARLAND were witnesses. The marriage was performed by Wm. CRAWFORD.11 Landon’s absence in the 1805 to 1807 Amherst tax lists and the 1810 census made me wonder if he may have left the area for a while. His father Philip was the only GOING in the area in 1810. William and Samuel were also missing in 1810 and 1820 and did not show up again in Nelson until 1830. Perhaps Landon went “somewhere” without his wife? Unusually, Landon and Sally were married about seven years before their first child Emmeline was born, possibly just before the 1810 census enumeration. As Landon was not a head of household, could he have been in his father’s home in 1810?

1810censusgoing
1810 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Nelson [ancestry.com]
1810 U.S. Federal Census12
Nelson County, Virginia
Albemarle
Phillip Going
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 15: 1 (??)
Free White Persons – Males – 16 thru 25: 1 (Landon)
Free White Persons – Males – 45 and over: 1 (Phillip)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 10: 1 (Emmeline, d/o Sally and Landon)
Free White Persons – Females – 26 thru 44: 1 (Sally, wife of Landon)
Free White Persons – Females – 45 and over : 1 (Judith)
Number of Household Members Under 16: 2
Number of Household Members Over 25: 3
Number of Household Members: 6
Note: Landon was not found in his own household; could he be with his father Phillip as assumed above?

Following the 1810 census, two more daughters were born: Martha C. “Martissa” GOWING about 1812 in Nelson County.13 and my 3rd great-grandmother Clementine M. GOWING about 1814. Before the 1820 census was enumerated Landon went bond on the marriage of his sister-in-law Betsy CRISP to Thomas HARRISON on 10 April 1820.14

1820censusgowing
1820 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Nelson [ancestry.com]
1820 U.S. Federal Census15
Nelson County, Virginia
Landon S. Gowing
Enumeration Date: August 7, 1820
Free White Persons – Males – 26 thru 44: 1 (Landon)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 10: 2 (Clementine and Martissa)
Free White Persons – Females – 10 thru 15: 1 (Emmeline)
Free White Persons – Females – 45 and over : 1 (Sally)
Number of Persons – Engaged in Agriculture: 1
Free White Persons – Under 16: 3
Free White Persons – Over 25: 2
Total Free White Persons: 5
Total All Persons – White, Slaves, Colored, Other: 5
Note: No sons listed. Sally and Landon had been married 17 years at the time of the census.

Towards the end of the 1820s Landon’s daughters were courting and marrying:

◉ Emmeline GOWING married William Dison LAWHORNE (1811-1880) on 16 June 1828 in Amherst County, Virginia16
◉ Clementine M. GOWING married Seaton Y. DEMPSEY (1803-1880) on 3 January 1829 in Amherst County, Virginia17

1829marriage
1829 Marriage Bond (photocopy courtesy of Geraldine Dempsey Workman)

Landon went bond with Seaton Y. DEMPSEY and signed the 1829 document (above). The signature above is nearly identical to the one found in an 1814 chancery record (below).18

signature
Signature of Landon S. Gowing on a document dated 28 November 1814. Chancery Records online at Library of Virginia: http://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1836-012

In 1830 Landon, his middle daughter Martissa, and his wife Sally were living in Amherst County near his son-in-law Seaton Y. DEMPSEY. As in 1820, the listing consistently shows that Sally was older than Landon.

1830censusgowing
1830 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Amherst [ancestry.com]
1830 U.S. Federal Census19
Amherst County, Virginia
Landon S. Gowing
Free White Persons – Males – 50 thru 59: 1 (Landon)
Free White Persons – Females – 15 thru 19: 1 (Martissa C.)
Free White Persons – Females – 60 thru 69: 1 (Sally)
Free White Persons – Under 20: 1
Total Free White Persons: 3
Total – All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 3

Landon and Sally’s middle daughter Martha C. “Martissa” GOWING married Wyatt F. LILLY (1811-aft. 1880) on 29 May 1833 in Amherst County, Virginia.20 They moved to Caldwell County, Kentucky, after the births of their three oldest sons and before the 1840 census.

Landon is widowed before 1838

Several batches of chancery records were found concerning the estate of Landon’s father-in-law William CRISP. In one batch it appears that Landon’s wife Sally died before October 1838.21

In 1840 Landon has a younger woman with three children in his household. His daughters are all accounted for, being with their husbands in their respective households. Did Landon marry again? No marriage record was found.

1840censusgoing
1840 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Nelson [ancestry.com]
1840 U.S. Federal Census22
Nelson County, Virginia
Name: Landon Going
Free White Persons – Males – Under 5: 1 (poss. son)
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 14: 1 (poss. Celia’s son Shelton Preston Ramsey)
Free White Persons – Males – 50 thru 59: 1 (Landon)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 5: 1 (poss. Celia’s daughter Sophia Ramsey)
Free White Persons – Females – 40 thru 49: 1 (poss. Celia seen in 1850)
Persons Employed in Agriculture: 1
Free White Persons – Under 20: 3
Free White Persons – 20 thru 49: 1
Total Free White Persons: 5
Total All Persons – Free White, Free Colored, Slaves: 5

1850censusgoing1
1850 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Nelson [ancestry.com]
1850 U.S. Federal Census23
Nelson County, Virginia
Sheet 267A
HH #702-702
Landon Going M 60 Virginia (sic, age should be abt. 73)
Celia Going F 50 Virginia
Sophia Going F 17 (sic) Virginia

Landon must have stopped drinking from his fountain of youth as he aged rapidly between 1850 and 1853. Wayne B. Smith wrote in an e-mail dated 19 August 2003, “In the book Amherst County in the Revolution, Landon Gowing is mentioned in the pension application of John Massey. Landon is listed as 87 years old, the application is dated 1853.” His source is a book I have not been able to consult.24.

1853Landon1
A page from the Revolutionary War package of John Massey and his wife Susannah Wright [accessed 8 Sep 2007 on HeritageQuest]
On 8 Sep 2007, I located the Revolutionary War papers of John MASSEY, husband of Susannah WRIGHT. In these papers, Landon S. GOWING gives an affidavit that children named are children of John Massey, deceased, who was a Cornett in the United States service in the Revolutionary War. Sophy RAMSEY was a witness to the document. Sophy was also a witness to the declaration made by Thomas MASSEY, son of John and Susannah.25

Landon S. GOWING was not enumerated in the 1860 census which leads to the conclusion that he died after making the above declaration on 24 September 1853 and before 1860. His daughters were living at the time of the 1880 census and most likely all died during the two decades before 1900.

What happened to the woman living with Landon in 1840 and 1850? Was Sophy RAMSEY who witnessed his declaration the same person as Sophia GOING seen with him in 1850? Could she have been his daughter?

The 1850 census shed a little light on the woman with Landon in 1840 but questions remained. I worked out the identify “Celia.” In 1850 John F. CAMDEN was Landon’s neighbor. I checked for him in 1860 and found him living next door to Celia RAMSEY.

1860censusramsey
1860 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Nelson [ancestry.com]
1860 U.S. Federal Census26
Nelson County, Virginia
Massies Mill
Celia Ramsey 71 F 0 20 b. Nelson Co., VA cannot read & write

ramsey
Screenshot of the GEDCOM file of Lilly Martin. The file is no longer available on Rootsweb WorldConnect as of 30 Sep 2022.

At RootsWeb’s WorldConnect Project I found Lilly Martin’s Gedcom file with the above note. Celia RAMSEY had two children out of wedlock:  Shelton Preston Ramsey born in 1830, and Sophy (Sophia) Ramsey born in 1837. This is apparently documented in her family bible.

To wrap things up, Sophia RAMSEY married James N. BRYANT in 1854, and her mother Celia RAMSEY died in May 1870. Sophia’s age in the 1860 and 1870 census indicates that the bible entry of 1837 as her year of birth is reliable. The question remains, was Landon her father?

This Post was Updated on 2 October 2022Missing source citations were added, images were scaled, and some corrections were made to the text and format.

© 20142022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. Paul Heinegg, Free African Americans (https://www.freeafricanamericans.com/), “Colonial Tax Lists, Virginia personal property tax lists, Census, and Court Records for Delaware, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennesse and Virginia,” Goochland County Colonial Tithables 1756-1780, Philip Going in 1767 and 1769, citing abstracts of Library of Virginia microfilm nos. 83, frames 18, 52, 109 (http://www.freeafricanamericans.com/goochcolonial.htm : accessed 4 Oct 2014). 
  2. William Douglas, The Douglas register, being a detailed record of births, marriages + deaths together with other interesting notes, as kept by the Rev. William Douglas, from 1750-1797; an index of Goochland Wills: notes on French-Hugeunot [sic] refugees who lived in Manakin-Town (Richmond, Va.: J.W. Fergusson & Sons, 1928.), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/25436/), image 143 of 434, page 141, Potter, Judith and Philip Going 4 Mar. 1770 (same info on image 108 of 434, page 106). (https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/25436/images/dvm_LocHist010582-00076-1?pId=142 : accessed 27 September 2022). 
  3. Ibid., image 203 of 434, page 141, Philip Going & Judith Potter a Daughter named Molly Mar: 4 1770. Baptized May 27 1770. p. 87 (https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/25436/images/dvm_LocHist010582-00106-1?pId=202 : accessed 27 September 2022) 
  4. “Legislative Petitions Digital Collection,” index and images, Library of Virginia, citing Legislative Petitions of the General Assembly, 1776-1865, Accession Number 36121, Box 11, Folder 40, 10 December 1785, Amherst, Inhabitants: Petition. (https://lva.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01LVA_INST/altrmk/alma9917811855605756 : accessed 27 September 2022). Digital version available at Rosetta Repository, Accession Number 36121, Box 11, Folder 40,  Filename: 06_011_040, 8 pages (http://rosetta.virginiamemory.com:1801/delivery/DeliveryManagerServlet?dps_pid=IE2583471 : accessed 27 September 2022). 
  5. Virginia. Commissioner of the Revenue (Amherst County), “Personal property tax lists, 1782-1851,” (browse-only images), FamilySearch Microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Personal property tax lists, 1782-1803, Film 2024457, DGS 7846299, and Personal property tax lists, 1804-1823, Film 2024458, DGS 7846300, misc. images in the collections. (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/775689 : accessed 8 May 2022). 
  6. Virginia. Commissioner of the Revenue (Nelson County), “Personal property lists 1809-1845,” (browse-only images), FamilySearch Microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Personal property lists 1809-1845, Film 1870172, DGS 7856150, misc. images in the collections. (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/637434 : accessed 29 September 2022). 
  7. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853” (browse-only images), FamilySearch, citing microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 449 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 162, 18 Dec 1802, Joseph Harvey and Polly Going, witnesses Philip Going and S. Garland. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99XF-NCNM?i=448&cat=680855 : accessed 29 September 2022). 
  8. Ibid., Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 480 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 193, 25 Mar 1806 Elijah Fitzgerald and Milley Gowing, witnesses Samuel Going (Gowing) and S. Garland. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9XF-NH5P?i=479&cat=680855 : accessed 29 September 2022). 
  9. Simon Newton Dexter North (1849-1924), United States Bureau of the Census, Heads of families at the first census of the United States taken in the year 1790 : records of the State enumerations: 1782-1785, Virginia, Archive.org (https://archive.org/details/headsoffamiliesa00nort/page/n1/mode/2up), Washington [D.C.], 1908, 1790 U.S. Federal Census, Amherst County, page 48, Going Phillip 13 whites. (https://archive.org/stream/headsoffamiliesa00nort#page/48/mode/2up/search/going : accessed 3 Oct 2014). 
  10. “Personal property tax lists, 1782-1851,” Film 2024457, DGS 7846299, Personal property tax lists, 1782-1803, image 445 of 615, 1799 PPT List A, Aaron Going 1 0 0 0, Landon Going 1 0 0 0, Philip Going 1 0 0 2. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSQF-2QMF?i=444&cat=775689 : accessed 29 September 2022). 
  11. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853,” Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 450 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 163, 5th entry, 17 Jan 1803 Landon Going and Sally Crisp, Philip Going and S. Garland in the column for security and witnesses. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-NZ6G?i=449 : accessed 11 January 2022). 
  12. 1810 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7613/), citing Third Census of the United States, 1810 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C. NARA microfilm publication M252, 71 rolls, Roll 70, FHL Film 0181430, image 21, Virginia, Nelson County, Albemarle, page 694, line 7, Phillip Going (accessed 19 May 2014). 
  13. “Kentucky, U.S., Death Records, 1852-1965,” Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/1222/), citing Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, Frankfort, Kentucky including, Death Certificates, 1911-1965 > 1911 > Film 7016138: All Counties > image 1209 of 3309 > Death Certificate File No. 27700. (https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/746153:1222 : accessed 21 February 2009). The parents of the deceased were both born in Nelson County, Virginia, per the informant on this certificate of death. 
  14. “Marriage registers, 1808-1985 ; indexes to marriage registers, 1808-1985,” browse-only images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/361788), citing microfilm of original records and photocopies at the Nelson County Courthouse in Lovingston, Virginia, and photostat copies at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia. Film 32714, DGS 7724886, Marriage register 1808-1878 (photostat copies), image 216 of 402, A list of marriage licenses issued of [from] the clerk’s office, page 14, 10 Apr 1820, Thomas Harrison and Betsy Crisp, security Landon S. Gowing, married by James Boyd. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C9BK-G77C?i=215&cc=2134304&cat=361788 : accessed 29 September 2022). 
  15. 1820 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry  (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7734/), citing Fourth Census of the United States, 1820 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M33, 142 rolls, NARA Roll: M33_130, image: 371, Virginia, Nelson County, page 194A, line 15, Landon S. Gowing (accessed 19 May 2014). 
  16. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853,” Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 586 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 298, 7th entry, 5 Jul 1828, Dison Langhorne and Emmeline Gowing, Landon S. Gowing – father, witnesses: Robert Langhorne Jr., Robert Tinsley, Arthur B. Davies. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-NDW2?i=585 : accessed 15 May 2022). 
  17. Ibid., Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 589 of 786, Amherst County Register of marriages, page 301, entry 2, 3 Jan 1829, Seaton Y Dempsey and Clementina Gowing, security and witnesses: Landon S. Gowing, Philip Smith Sr., Ro. Tinsley. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99XF-N8WJ : accessed 26 February 2022). 
  18. Chancery Records of Virginia, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia, Local Government Records Collection, Virginia Memory (https://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/), Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, John Stevens vs. Landon Gowing, 1836-012. (http://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1836-012 : accessed 2014). 
  19. 1830 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8058/), citing Fifth Census of the United States, 1830 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C. NARA microfilm publication M19, 201 rolls, Nara Roll M19_194, FHL Film: 0029673, Virginia, Amherst County, page 519 (double-page spread), line 12, Landon Gowing (accessed 19 Feb 2013). 
  20. “Register of marriages, Amherst County, Virginia, 1763-1853,” Film 30273, DGS 7578824, image 611 of 786, Amherst County Register of Marriages, page 323, 3rd entry, 29 May 1833, Wiatt Lily and Martha C. (Martissa) Gowing, Landon S. Gowing – father, witnesses: James Fitzgerald and Robert Tinsley. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89XF-ND36?i=610 : accessed 15 May 2022). 
  21. Chancery Records of Virginia, Nelson County (Va.) Chancery Causes 1808-1912, Rives & Murphy vs. Thomas Harrison etc. 1839-006. (http://www.lva.virginia.gov/chancery/case_detail.asp?CFN=125-1839-006 : accessed 2014). 
  22. 1840 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8057/), citing Sixth Census of the United States, 1840 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M704, 580 rolls, NARA Roll: M704_569, FHL Film: 0029690, Virginia, Nelson County, page 57 (double-page spread), line 25, Landon Gowing (accessed 19 May 2014). 
  23. 1850 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8054/), citing Seventh Census of the United States, 1850 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M432, 1009 rolls, Roll: M432_963, image 172; Virginia, Nelson County, sheet 267A, lines 27-30, household 702-702, Landon Gowing (accessed 3 October 2014). 
  24. Lenora Higginbotham Sweeny, Amherst County, Virginia In the Revolution: Including Extracts from the “Lost Order Book” 1773-1782, Southern Historical Press, 1998 
  25. “Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files, 1800-1900,” database and images, Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/1995/), citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm publication M804, 2,670 rolls. Records of the Department of Veterans Affairs, Record Group 15; National Archives, Washington, D.C., M > Marshal, Benjamin – Maxwell, William > Massay, John – Massy, Jacob > John Massey file ( images 685 to 707 of 1029) > image 689 > affidavit of Landon S. Gowing (accessed 16 May 2022). 
  26. 1860 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7667/), citing Eighth Census of the United States, 1860 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M653, 1,438 rolls, Roll: M653_1365; Family History Library Film: 805365; Virginia, Nelson County, sheet 732, page 44, line 21, household 316-316, Celia Ramsey (accessed 29 September 2022).