Updates on the Family of William Wood and Mary Ann McGraw

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been reviewing the sources for my fourth great-grandparents William WOOD and Mary Ann McGRAW. The posts written in 2014 were updated with source citations and shared on social media on July 24 and 31. However, readers who follow by email don’t receive notifications of changes to posts.

While reviewing and adding sources, I try not to make significant changes to the original posts. Short update notices were added to correct small mistakes.

Some corrections and additional information need to be discussed in depth for the family of William WOOD (1777-1835) and Mary Ann McGRAW (1781-bet. 1836-1840).

Correcting a death estimate

In many GEDCOM files Mary Ann McGRAW’s date and place of death are seen as about 1845 in Nicholas County. I believe this to be incorrect. Due to changing county lines, the land owned by her deceased husband William WOOD was originally in Monroe County, fell to Nicholas County when it was formed in 1818, and then to Fayette County when formed in 1831.

In my early research into the WOOD-McGRAW couple, I found Ann WOODS (age 40 to 49) in Nicholas County on the 1840 census with a male age under 5 and a female age 5 to 9.1 At the time, I thought this might be Mary Ann with unknown younger children. However, as new records came to light, I dismissed this possibility.

Personal property tax lists (PPT) were searched in Nicholas County for WOOD and WOODS. Two distinct groups were found:

◉ William WOOD and his sons were in Nicholas County until the formation of Fayette County.

◉ Stephen, John, and Zachariah WOODS were in Nicholas County at the same time as the WOOD men and remained in Nicholas County from 1831.

Dates of visits on the PPT list also indicate the men with the surnames WOOD and WOODS didn’t live in the same area. In 1833, and only in 1833, Ann WOODS was listed.2 Would this be the same person as seen in the 1840 census?

From the PPT list, it is clear that William, his brothers Bailey and James, and his sons Enoch and Elijah lived in an area of Nicholas County that became Fayette County in 1831.

All 1840 census records for William and Mary Ann’s children were checked. None of the households include an older woman. Nor was Mary Ann listed as the head of a household in 1840.

Mary Ann McGRAW wasn’t living in Nicholas County when she died. She was not found on tax lists or census in 1840 or later.

I went looking for more records to fill in the timeline…

Court minutes

New collections have been added online in the last two years at FamilySearch including court minutes, land deeds, and tax records.

The will books of West Virginia counties have been online and searchable for quite some time. In this collection, there was no will for William WOOD but his estate was appraised and a bill of sale drawn up. Would the court minutes reveal records ordered to be recorded other than the appraisal and bill of sale?

While searching the index of the court minutes for the administrator’s bond entry for the estate of the deceased William WOOD, I found several other entries of interest.

On 18 August 1835, Elijah WOOD and Amos WOOD, sons of the deceased, entered into a bond for the letters of administration of the estate of William WOOD.3

On 15 September 1835, the appraisement bill of the estate of William WOOD, deceased, was presented in court, inspected, and ordered to be recorded.4 Another entry made the same day was more revealing.5

On motion of Amos Wood it is ordered that Miles Manser, James B. Westlake, Thomas McVay, Jacob Kious, and Joseph Paxton or any two of them do lay off and assign to Mary Wood her dower in the lands of her late husband Wm Wood deceased in this county and make report to this court.

Several months later, at a court held on 19 January 1836 Mary’s dower rights to the land were assigned. The entry included a description of the land tract.6

An assignment of the dower of Mary Wood in the lands of her late husband William Wood was this day returned and is as follows Pursuant to an order of the county court of Fayette made at the Sept Term of said court 1835) We the undersigned did go upon the land of William Wood deceased and at the request of Mary Wood wife of Wm Wood deceased we laid of her right of dower of a tract of land containing fifty acres at the lower end including the house and other buildings which is bounded as follows To wit Beginning at a poplar near the Road corner to the original survey and with a call there of N°45W 100 poles to two white oaks and maple in a flat beginning corner of said survey thence with an other call there of S°1W75 poles to two white oaks corner to same thence through the survey N°87 1/2 E75 poles to the beginning containing 16 acres and 88 poles given under our hands this 19th of November 1835.
Jacob Kious
Thomas McVey
Whereupon the same is established as the dower of the said Mary Wood in the lands of her late husband William Wood decd and it is ordered that the Mary Wood hold the said land assigned her as aforesaid as and for her dower.

At the same session of court, Elijah WOOD was assigned guardianship of his younger siblings Bailey and Mary Ann.7

The court doth assign Elijah Wood Guardian of Bailey Wood and Mary Ann Wood Children of William Wood deceased who together with J B Hamilton & John Young his securities entered into and acknowledged a bond in the penalty of $200 conditioned according to law.

As of 19 January 1836 Mary Ann McGRAW, widow of William WOOD, had the right to occupy the dwelling place and live off the land. While her older children were married and on their own, she cared for two underage children, Bailey and Mary Ann, who were legally under the guardianship of their older brother Elijah.

No mention was found in the court minutes of Mary Ann McGRAW aka Mary WOOD’s death.

Land deeds

Assuming that her children would divide up the land or sell their interests after their mother’s death, I searched the land deeds of Fayette County.

The grantor index of Fayette County was checked for the children’s names for the years from William’s death until the mid-1840s.

On 15 July 1841 Enoch WOOD and his wife Margaret, Elijah WOOD and his wife Rachel, Bailey WOOD and his wife Lucinda, and Martin HESS and his wife Mary sold their interest in the 50 acres tract to their brother Amos WOOD.8

On 12 August 1841 Margaret and her husband Thomas WITHROW sold Margaret’s interest in the 50 acres tract to her brother Amos WOOD.9

Mary Ann McGRAW appears to have died after 19 January 1836 and before 15 July 1841 when the first of her children gave up their interest in their father’s land.

More questions came up

Question #1

The land deeds account for all of William WOOD and Mary Ann McGRAW’s children except for the son Allen. Was Allen WOOD not their child? A quick review of the records showed that Amos WOOD appointed his brothers Elijah and Allen WOOD executors of his last will and testament dated 24 May 1845.10 This doesn’t explain why Allen’s interest in William’s estate isn’t documented but it shows that Allen, Elijah, and Amos were brothers and therefore Allen was a son of William WOOD and his wife Mary Ann McGRAW.

Question #2

The first land deed brings up a discrepancy in the timeline. On 15 July 1841, the date the deed was dated, it was explained to the wives apart from their husbands. They acknowledged that they had signed the deed under their own free will and not by threat or promise of reward. The deed was presented to the court and ordered to be recorded on 11 March 1842.

Martin HESS and Mary Ann WOOD were married by John JOHNSON on 1 October 1841.11 How could they be named as husband and wife in a land deed dated 15 July 1841? Is the date recorded by John JOHNSON not correct? Did they backdate the deeds to the time their mother died?

Question #3

In January 1836 Bailey WOOD was underage and in need of a guardian. In 1840 he was old enough to have his own household on the census.12 He was enumerated in the 20 thru 29 years range. Also in his household were two young ladies. The elder was in the same age range as Bailey. The younger, age 15 thru 19, could only be his sister Mary Ann who would marry Martin HESS on 1 October 1841.

No trace of Bailey had been found after the 1840 census. As I looked further in the court minutes, I found that Elijah WOOD was appointed administrator of Bailey WOOD Jr.’s estate on 10 November 1842.13 He was considered Jr. as his uncle Bailey WOOD was still living.

With this entry, I learned that Bailey WOOD had died by 10 November 1842. From the land deed dated 15 July 1841, I discovered that he had a wife named Lucinda. This was new information. They likely married before the 1840 census and the woman in the 20 thru 29 years range could be Lucinda.

I searched the West Virginia marriages. No marriage between Bailey WOOD and a lady named Lucinda was found. Marriage records for the 1840s are known to be missing in Fayette County. Could this be one of them?

A marriage between Lucinda WOOD and Archibald PARRISH took place in Fayette County on 4 July 1843. The record is a minister’s entry and includes no further information.14

I have many WOOD individuals from this area in my database. Until now, I had not come across a woman named Lucinda WOOD. Could she have been the widow of Bailey WOOD?

In 1850 A. P. Parrish, a blacksmith, was enumerated with his wife Lucinda and their three children: Median age 5, James age 3, and E. J. (female) 5 months. Lucinda was born in Vermont.15 As none of the WOOD individuals in the area at the time were born in Vermont, I suspect she was a widow, i.e. possibly the widow of Bailey WOOD. The husband and wife were both 33 in 1850, born about 1817. Lucinda’s age would have been 23 in 1840 and a match for the woman in the household of Bailey WOOD.

Interestingly, Archibald and Lucinda were living only two households away from Bailey’s brother Elijah WOOD in 1850.

Rabbit Hole

The marriage of Archibald PARRISH and Lucinda WOOD on 4 July 1843 sent me down a rabbit hole.

To prove/disprove this Lucinda WOOD was the widow of Bailey WOOD, I needed to follow her trail. And what a trail it was.

The PARRISH families have ties to many families in my family tree. I haven’t researched them to the extent that all persons with the surname PARRISH in the Fayette County area have been connected in my database.

I had information on one of the earliest family groups. William PARRISH died about the same time as William WOOD leaving a will that was ordered to be recorded at the September court term of 1835. He named children Joshua, Archibald, William, Nicholas, Rachel (Burton), Susan (Coleman), Polly (Coleman), and Nancy (Arthur).16

A man named Archibald PARRISH lived in Fayette County in 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880. He was not, however, listed with a wife named Lucinda. His age during those years places his birth between 1804-1810. He would be the son of William PARRISH.

A. P. PARRISH with a wife named Lucinda on the 1850 census of Fayette County couldn’t be Archibald, son of William. He was likely the son of one of William’s sons. But I will leave it to PARRISH researchers to figure out this relationship.

I followed Lucinda’s family to Linn County, Missouri, in 1860 and to the neighboring Sullivan County, Missouri, in 1870 and 1880.17,18,19

Archibald and Lucinda had two children who survived them. A death record for the son James H. PARRISH was not found. The 1924 death record of daughter Isabelle PARRISH (seen as E. J. in 1850) showed her mother was Lucinda WITHERELL.20

From 1860 to 1880 the census listings indicated that Lucinda was born in Massachusetts. Further, in the 1900 and 1910 censuses, Isabelle’s mother (Lucinda) was noted as being born in Massachusetts.21,22 The place of birth isn’t Vermont as seen on the 1850 census but the names of the husband and children match those in the censuses from 1860 to 1880. Only the 1920 census has the places of birth for Isabelle (Missouri instead of Virginia or West Virginia), her mother Lucinda (Ohio instead of Massachusetts), and her father (Kentucky instead of Virginia or West Virginia) that conflict with the earlier records.23

WITHERELL is not a name found in Fayette County but it is a common surname in Vermont and Massachusetts. How did Lucinda WITHERELL, born in Massachusetts (or Vermont), come to be in Fayette County as early as 1843 when she married Archibald PARRISH?

Bottom Line

Although I was very tempted to burrow deeper into the PARRISH rabbit hole, I forced myself to keep on track with things that need more attention. These are the corrections and additions I’ve made to the family of William WOOD and Mary Ann McGRAW.

William WOOD died shortly before 18 August 1835 when his sons filed an administrator’s bond for his estate. I had previously listed his death at about September 1835 when his estate was appraised.

His widow Mary Ann McGRAW most likely died after 19 January 1836 when her dower right to the land of her deceased husband was assigned and before 15 July 1841 when the first of her children sold their interest in this land. Her place of death was presumably Fayette County. I had previously listed her death as being between 1840 and 1850.

Bailey WOOD, son of William and Mary Ann, married a young woman named Lucinda, likely before the 1840 census. He died shortly before 10 November 1842 when his brother Elijah filed an administrator’s bond for his estate and motioned for the personal estate to be appraised. It had not been known that he was married before finding the land deed mentioning his wife Lucinda.

Looking forward to hearing from descendants…

© 2022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. 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, Roll: 571; Family History Library Film: 0029690; Nicholas, Virginia; Page: 3; Ann Woods. 
  2. “Personal property tax lists, 1818-1850,” (browse-only images), Virginia Commissioner of the Revenue (Nicholas County), FamilySearch, microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia. Personal property tax lists, 1818-1850, 19 March 1833, Ann Woods, 1 0 0 0 tax 0 cents. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKJ-W9JB-P?cat=637422 : accessed 8 August 2022). 
  3. “Court minutes and order books, 1837-1928,” browse-only images, FamilySearch, citing microfilm of original records at the Fayette County, West Virginia courthouse., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 12 of 470, August Term 1835, 18 Aug 1835, page 11, 3rd entry, Amos and Elijah Wood, bond for letters of administration. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9J7-H?i=11&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  4. Ibid., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 17 of 470, September Term 1835, 15 Sep 1835, page 20, first entry, appraisement bill of the estate of William Wood presented and ordered to be recorded. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9FQ-Z?i=16&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  5. Ibid., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 16 of 470, September Term 1835, 15 Sep 1835, page 19, 3rd entry, Amos Wood’s motion to assign Mary Wood her dower in the land of her deceased husband William Wood. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9FW-X?i=15&cat=100698 : accessed 31 July 2022). 
  6. Ibid., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 24 of 470, January Term 1836, 19 Jan 1836, page 34-35, Mary Wood’s dower rights. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9FB-T?i=23&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  7. Ibid., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 24 of 470, January Term 1836, 19 Jan 1836, page 35, Elijah assigned as guardian of young Bailey and Mary Ann Wood, children of William Wood. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9FB-T?i=23&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  8. Fayette County (West Virginia), Clerk of the County Court, “Deed book, 1831-1902; deed book index, 1831-1951” (database with images), <i>FamilySearch</i>, filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1969, citing microfilm of original records at the Fayette County courthouse, Film 583734, DGS 8152866, image141 of 419, Deed book, v. C 1839-1841, pages 255-256, 15 July 1841, Enoch Wood and wife Margaret, Elijah and wife Rachel, Bailey and wife Lucinda, and Martin Hess and wife Mary to Amos Wood, 50 acres. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKV-FSR4-3?i=140&cat=100754 : accessed 9 August 2022) This is the 50 acres from Mary Ann McGraw’s dower rights. 
  9. Ibid., Film 583734, DGS 8152866, image 150 of 419, Deed book, v. C 1839-1841, page 274, 11 Aug 1841, Thomas Withrow and wife Margaret to Amos Wood, 50 acres. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKV-FSRN-3?i=149&cat=100754 : accessed 9 August 2022) This is the 50 acres from Mary Ann McGraw’s dower rights. 
  10. “West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch, digital images of originals housed at local county courthouse in West Virginia, Fayette > Will book, v. 001 1832-1866 > image 224 of 292 > page 66-67, Last Will and Testament of Amos Wood dated 24 May 1845, proven June term 1845. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-18271-58322-39?cc=1909099&wc=M6DN-5NG:179689901,179689902 : accessed 9 August 2022). 
  11. West Virginia Vital Research Records Project (database and images), West Virginia Division of Culture and History, citing county records in county courthouses, West Virginia (A collaborative venture between the West Virginia State Archives and the Genealogical Society of Utah to place vital records online via the West Virginia Archives and History Web site accessible at https://archive.wvculture.org/vrr), West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 584764, image 201, page 23, entry 3, Martin Hess and Mary A Wood, 1 Oct 1841, married by John Johnson. (http://images.wvculture.org/584764/00201.jpg : accessed 30 July 2022). 
  12. 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, Roll: 704_555; FHL Film: 0029685, Virginia, Fayette County, page 149, line 5, Bailey Wood (accessed 30 July 2014). 
  13. “Court minutes and order books, 1837-1928,” Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 287 of 470, November Term 1842, 10 Nov 1842, page 521, 1st and 2n entry, Amos and Elijah Wood, bond for letters of administration and appraisers of estate of Bailey Wood Jr. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9KW-6?i=286&cat=100698 : accessed 31July 2022). 
  14. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 584764, image 206, 4 Jul 1843 Archibald Parish and Lucinda Wood married by W. Carnafix. (http://images.wvculture.org/584764/00206.jpg : accessed 10 August 2022). 
  15. 1850 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), <i>Ancestry</i> (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: 943, Virginia, Fayette County, District 14, sheet 337A (stamped), household 92-92, lines 6-10, A.P. Parrish (accessed 3 April 2022). 
  16. “West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” Fayette > Will book, v. 001 1832-1866 > image 33 of 292 > Will Book 1 page 42, 5 Oct 1831 Last Will and Testament of William Parrish, proven Fayette County Court Sept. Term 1835 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:9392-C9SQ-75?cc=1909099&wc=Q816-MG7%3A179689901%2C179689902 : accessed 10 August 2022) 
  17. 1860 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), <i>Ancestry</i> (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_630; Family History Library Film: 803630; Township 57 Range 20, Linn, Missouri; Page: 693; Arch Parish household. 
  18. 1870 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), <i>Ancestry</i> (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_823; Duncan, Sullivan, Missouri; Page: 189A; Archibold Parish household. 
  19. 1880 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), <i>Ancestry</i> (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/6742/), citing Tenth Census of the United States, 1880 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T9, 1,454 rolls, Roll: 738; Scottsville, Sullivan, Missouri; Enumeration District: 199; Page: 178B; Archibald Parish household. 
  20. “Missouri Death Certificates, 1910 – 1971,” database with images, Missouri Digital Heritage, citing original data: Missouri Death Certificates, Missouri State Archives; Sullivan, 1924, Certificate of Death 30822, Isabelle Bagwell  (https://www.sos.mo.gov/images/archives/deathcerts/1924/1924_00033784.PDF). 
  21. 1900 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7602/), citing Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T623, 1854 rolls, Roll: 905; FHL microfilm: 1240905; Polk, Sullivan, Missouri; Enumeration District: 0161; Page: 14; Leonard Creason household. 
  22. 1910 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7884/), citing Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C., NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls, Roll: T624_826; FHL microfilm: 1374839; Polk, Sullivan, Missouri; Enumeration District: 0172; Page: 22A; Leonard Creason household. 
  23. 1920 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/6061/), citing Fourteenth Census of the United States, 1920 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C., NARA microfilm publication T625, 2076 rolls, Roll: T625_964; Milan Ward 3, Sullivan, Missouri; Enumeration District: 175; Page: 20B; Leonard Creason household. 

52 Ancestors: #31 Mary Ann McGRAW abt. 1781-1840s

“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 #31 in Amy Johnson Crow’s Challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

#31 Mary Ann McGRAW abt. 1781-1840s

You’ve got to love an ancestor who leaves evidence of who her parents were! In 1800 my 4th great-grandfather William WOOD wanted to hitch up with Mary Ann McGRAW. But Mary Ann wasn’t old enough and had to have her parents’ permission to tie the knot.1

1800permission
1800 Permission slip for Mary Ann McGraw to marry

                  June the 2
Sir, this coms to let you now that
I Marten and Marget Mcgraw
is willing that William Wood
should have our daughter Mary Ann
To John Hutchason (Clerk)
The above was sworn to by
John Wood one of the witnesses
present

And so it came to be that Martin and Margaret McGRAW, my 5th great-grandparents, gave permission for their daughter, my 4th great-grandmother, Mary Ann McGRAW to marry William WOOD, my 4th great-grandfather. This took place in the newly formed county of Monroe formerly part of Greenbrier County.

1800bond
1800 bond by Willliam and John Wood for the marriage of William Wood and Mary Ann McGraw

Know all men by these presents that we William Wood
and John Wood are held & firmly Bound unto
James Monroe Esq. governor or Chief Majestrate of the
Commonwealth of Virg. in the Sum of one hundred and
fifty Dollars, with Condition that there is no lawful cause
to obstruct a marriage intended to be Solemnized between
the above named William Wood & Mary Anne McGraw,
Both of this County of Monroe, then this obligation to
be Void, otherwise to be & remain in full force and
Virtue – Sealed with our Seals & dated this
third day of June one thousand Eight hundred.
       Attest.                                   William Wood
John Hutchison, Clk.                   John Wood

John WOOD, one of the witnesses present when permission was given by Martin and Margaret McGRAW, went bond with William WOOD of Monroe on William’s marriage to Mary Ann McGRAW of Monroe on Tuesday the 3rd of June 1800 in Monroe County, Virginia.2

1800marriage
1800 Minister’s return on the marriage

Two weeks later on Wednesday, the 18th day of June, Rev. John ALDERSON Jr. solemnized the marriage of William and Mary Ann.3

The WOOD family and Rev. John ALDERSON Jr. knew each other well. Bailey WOOD, William’s father, had been one of the original 12 Baptists who organized the Old Greenbrier Baptist Church.

On the 130th anniversary of the founding of the Old Greenbrier Baptist Church, Rev. Robert B. McDanel preached on Sunday morning, 26 November 1911, of the brave little band of twelve members with sturdy convictions whose “names are surely immortal.” He also shared the following about the membership.4

In those early years the membership was scattered over a wide extent of territory. It is recorded in the minutes, July 26, 1788, that those who lived nigh were required to attend the services once a month. Those who lived within fifteen miles must come once a quarter, and those at further distance once a year.

As part of the second night of celebration of the 200th annual session of the Greenbrier Baptist Association held in Alderson, West Virginia in July 2000,  Rev. Jon Jennings portrayed Rev. John Alderson Jr. in a historical overview of the establishment of the Greenbrier Baptist Association and the Old Greenbrier Baptist Church. His monologue included the following:5

So, for four years I continued this struggle as a traveling preacher, until November 24, 1781, we gathered together, 12 faithful Baptists and organized the Greenbrier Baptist Church. (Let me see if I can recall the names: Myself, and my wife, Mary, and Thomas Alderson; then John Kippers, John Shepherd, then there was John, Katherine, Joseph and Lucy Scaggs, and the Woods family: Bailey and Ann, and James Woods).

Siblings of Mary Ann McGRAW

To make the following list I studied the tax lists submitted by Julie McGrew-Ayres6; the early marriages in the Greenbrier, Monroe, Kanawha, Nicholas, and Fayette counties area; and the pre-1850 as well as later censuses – for all persons named.

• Sib 1: Anthony (1775-1814) born abt. 1775 Pennsylvania
• Sib 2: John (1776- ) born abt. 1776 Pennsylvania
• Sib 4: Martin (1785-1858) born 1785 Pennsylvania
• Sib 5: William (1788- ) born abt. 1788
• Sib 6: Elender (1788-1845) born abt. 1789
• Sib 7: Samuel (1792-1874) born abt. 1792 (West) Virginia
• Sib 8: Thomas (1795-1855) born abt. 1795 (West) Virginia
• Sib 9: Henry (1797-1873) born abt. 1797 (West) Virginia

The marriage of William WOOD and Mary Ann McGRAW was the only one that had a bond showing her parents to be Martin and Margaret McGRAW. Thomas McGRAW’s wife Catharine gave the names of his parents as Martin and Margaret McGRAW on his 1855 death record.7

marriagesI believe that all of these McGRAWs were children of Martin and Margaret EXCEPT for William McGRAW who married Elizabeth GILL. This William was a grandson through their son Anthony.

Parents of Mary Ann McGRAW

After studying the possible children of Martin and Margaret McGRAW, I found the estimated years of birth seen for the couple in many online GEDCOM files need to be revised.

Martin: He was most likely 21 or older when he married. Anthony, the oldest known child, was born abt. 1775. If he was the first child and born within a year of the marriage, Martin and Margaret might have been married about 1774 or earlier. Martin would therefore have been born about 1753 or earlier. Martin was last seen on tax lists in 1805 and Margaret was first seen on the tax lists in 1810. Martin died after 1805 and before 1810.

Margaret: In 1820 and 1830 her son Henry McGRAW had an older woman living in his household. In 1820 Henry was not yet married and the woman age 45 or older must be his mother.8 I believe that the woman aged between 70 and 79 in 1830 is his mother although any other older woman.9 But let’s assume she is Henry’s mother. This range in 1830 would put her birth between 1751-1760. She would have been between 15-24 when her oldest child Anthony was born. Margaret would therefore have been born between 1751-1760. Margaret died most likely between 1830-1840.

Mary Ann McGRAW was born in Pennsylvania

Mary Ann McGRAW’s brother Martin McGRAW Jr. (1785-1858) married William WOOD’s sister Nancy WOOD by the publication of banns on 3 May 1806 in Monroe County. The marriage was solemnized by Rev. John ALDERSON Jr.10 A marriage by license was more expensive than marriage by the publication of banns. This public notice of an intended marriage had to be published, verbally or by written notice, for three consecutive meetings at the churches of the bride and groom making the waiting time longer than with a license.

Was there a reason that the couple would marry “by banns” in 1806? Martin McGRAW Sr., as mentioned previously, was last seen on the Greenbrier tax lists in 1805 which may suggest that he was deceased when his son Martin Jr. married. Could he not afford a marriage license?

Martin Jr. lived long enough to be enumerated on the 1850 census.11 We rely on the census for valuable pieces of information concerning our ancestors. Nevertheless, the information is only as reliable as the person who answered the enumerator’s questions. In the case of Martin Jr., no ages were listed for any of the persons in his household in 1850. Still, their places of birth were included. Martin Jr. was born in Pennsylvania. As Mary Ann was his older sister she was likely also born in Pennsylvania. Martin Jr.’s War of 1812 pension papers may have more information on his place of birth. (Note: The pension file was downloaded and reviewed 4 January 2020. Martin McGraw Jr.’s place of birth is not mentioned.)

Children of Mary Ann McGRAW and William WOOD

In 1810 Mary Ann and her husband William WOOD were enumerated next door to her brother Martin McGRAW and her father-in-law Bailey WOOD.12 By 1810 Mary Ann had given birth to 5 children. Four would follow in the next 14 years.

1810censuswood
1810 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Monroe

• Ch 1: Enoch J. (1801-aft. 1870) was born about 1801 in Monroe
• Ch 2: Margaret “Peggy” (1801-1856) was born about 1801 in Monroe
• Ch 3: Unknown (1804- ?) female was born bet. 1804-1809 in Monroe
• Ch 4: Elijah (1806-1885) was born about 1806 in Monroe
• Ch 5: Amos (1807-1845) was born about 1807 in Monroe
• Ch 6: Allen (1814-1862) was born about 1814 in Monroe
• Ch 7: Bailey (1816-1842) was born bet. 1816-1819 in Monroe or Nicholas
• Ch 8: Unknown (1816-?) female was born bet. 1816-1819 in Monroe or Nicholas
• Ch 9: Mary Ann “Polly” (1824-aft. 1900) was born 5 June 1824 in Nicholas County

Note (30 July 2022): PPT (personal property tax) lists are now available online for all Virginia counties. The entries for Wood in Monroe and Nicholas counties were checked. William was in Monroe County until Nicholas County was formed in 1818.

Following the birth of her last child Mary Ann’s children began to marry:

• Ch 4: Elijah WOOD married Rachel HONAKER (1804-1860) on 4 January 1825 in Nicholas County13
• Ch 2: Margaret “Peggy” WOOD married Thomas WITHROW (1806-1880) on 12 October 1826 Nicholas County14
• Ch 1: Enoch J. WOOD married Margaret JOHNSON (1800-1850) before 1827
• Ch 5: Amos WOOD married Susan PARRISH ( -1845) on 12 May 1831 in Nicholas County15
• Ch 6: Allen WOOD married Elizabeth JOHNSON (1808-1881) on 14 November 1832 in Monroe County16
• Ch 9: Mary Ann “Polly” WOOD married Martin HESS (1818-1900) on 1 October 1841 in Fayette County17

These six children gave Mary Ann McGRAW and William WOOD 47 grandchildren and close to 200 great-grandchildren. I don’t have all great-grandchildren as I have only recently begun research on Peggy and Thomas WITHROW.

Mary Ann’s husband William WOOD died before 18 August 1835 in Fayette County when his sons Elijah and Amos were appointed administrators of his estate.18

Years ago an indexing error on Ancestry for Amos WOOD’s 1840 census showed two women in his household. It has been corrected and reflects the household correctly. At the time, I didn’t pay close attention to the numbers and columns on the census sheet and assumed the older woman was Mary Ann McGRAW. This mistake caused me to estimate her death in the 1840s.

Following the 1840 census, there were several deaths in the family. Bailey WOOD died before 10 November 1842 when his brother Elijah WOOD was appointed administrator of his estate and appraisers were chosen.19

Amos WOOD died leaving a will dated 24 May 1845 that was presented in open court in June 1845.20 Although he provided for his 5 children he did not mention his wife Susan who must have predeceased him.

Mary Ann McGRAW, the widow of William WOOD, was living on 19 January 1836 when her dower rights were established for the land of her deceased husband.21 She likely died before the 1840 census. The census records of each of her children were studied and none had an older woman in their household. Although many have her date and place of death as abt. 1845 in Nicholas County, I believe that she died in Fayette County, where she was living when her husband died.

On the anniversary of Mary Ann McGRAW and William WOOD’s 100th wedding anniversary, only one of their children was still living. Mary Ann “Polly” WOOD and her husband Martin HESS, married 56 years, were living on the south side of Mountain Cove District in Fayette County.22

This Post was Updated on 31 July 2022Missing source citations were added, images were scaled, and some corrections were made to the text and format. Further records were found that necessitate a new post updating information on one of the children.

© 2014-2022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. West Virginia Vital Research Records Project (database and images), West Virginia Division of Culture and History citing county records in county courthouses, West Virginia (A collaborative venture between the West Virginia State Archives and the Genealogical Society of Utah to place vital records online via the West Virginia Archives and History Web site accessible at https://archive.wvculture.org/vrr), West Virginia, Monroe County, June 1800, William Wood and Mary Ann McGraw, permission slip from her parents (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11370465&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  2. Ibid., West Virginia, Monroe County, Marriage Bond dated 18 June 1800 William Wood and John Wood went bond on the marriage of William Wood and Mary Anne McGraw (both of Monroe). (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11370480&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  3. Ibid., West Virginia, Monroe County, 18 June 1800 William Wood and Mary Ann McGraw married by John Alderson. 1800 Marriage Record entry (right page, 1st entry under Alderson). (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11369625&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  4. West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History, “1781-1911: One Hundred and Thirtieth Anniversary, Old Greenbrier Baptist Church,” “One Hundred and Thirtieth Anniversary Sermon Preached by the Pastor, Rev. Robert B. McDanel, Sunday Morning, November 26, 1911.”
     (https://archive.wvculture.org/history/religion/greenbrierbaptist01.html : accessed July 2014). 
  5. Historical Monologue of Greenbrier Baptist Association, “Dramatic Monologue by Elder John Alderson, Jr.,” a historical overview of the establishment of the Greenbrier Baptist Association and the Old Greenbrier Baptist Church (originally found online http://www.shuckmemorial.com/GBAHistory.html : site last updated 27 August 2006). The article has been saved to the Wayback Machine: https://web.archive.org/web/20070707021923/https://www.shuckmemorial.com/GBAHistory.html : accessed 30 July 2022. 
  6. Julie McGrew-Ayres, “Greenbrier County, WV – McGraw’s in the Greenbrier Co. Tax Lists – 1792-1833,” submitted February 1999 (http://files.usgwarchives.net/wv/greenbrier/taxlists/mcgraw.txt : accessed July 2014) 
  7. WVCulture.org, 1855 Death Register entry for Thomas McGraw line 68. (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=4786546&Type=Death : accessed 22 January 2020). 
  8. 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_133, Image: 218, Virginia, Monroe, Peterstown, page 179, Henry McGraw household (https://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 8 January 2020). 
  9. 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, Roll: 190; History Library Film: 0029669, Virginia, Greenbrier, page 192, Henry McGraw household (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 7 September 2014). 
  10. WVCulture.org, West Virginia, Monroe County, 3 May 1806, Nancy Wood and Martin McGraw married by John Alderson, banns were published. 1806 Marriage Record (right page, 4th entry from bottom). (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11369727&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  11. 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_971, Virginia, Putnam County, District 46, sheet 287A, household 274-282, lines 14-22, Martin McGraw (accessed 22 January 2020). Ages were not listed. This is a known omission on the 1850 census of Putnam County. 
  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, Family History Library Film: 0181430, Virginia, Monroe, image 22, page 575, William Wood (accessed 2 January 2020). 
  13. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 495643, image 130, West Virginia, Re-Index and Copy of Marriage Record No. 1–Nicholas County, line 6, 4 Jan 1925, Elijah Wood and Rachel Hannaker, married by Jno Campbell, citing Nicholas County. (http://images.wvculture.org/495643/00130.jpg : accessed 25 April 2013). 
  14. Ibid., West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 495643, image 130, Re-Index and Copy of Marriage Record No. 1—Nicholas County, no page number, 9th entry, 12 Oct 1826, Thos Withrow, Margaret Wood, married by John Campbell. (http://images.wvculture.org/495643/00130.jpg : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  15. Ibid., West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 495643, image 130, Re-Index and Copy of Marriage Record No. 1—Nicholas County, no page number, 14th entry, 12 May 1831, Amos Wood, Susan Parish, married by W. Carnefix. (http://images.wvculture.org/495643/00130.jpg : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  16. Ibid., West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 1710879, image 516, 14 Nov 1832, Allen Wood and Charles W Johnson bond for the marriage of Allen Wood and Elizabeth Johnson. (http://images.wvculture.org/1710879/00516.jpg : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  17. Ibid., West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 584764, image 201, page 23, entry 3, Martin Hess and Mary A Wood, 1 Oct 1841, married by John Johnson. (http://images.wvculture.org/584764/00201.jpg : accessed 30 July 2022). 
  18. “Court minutes and order books, 1837-1928,” browse-only images, FamilySearch, citing microfilm of original records at the Fayette County, West Virginia courthouse., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 12 of 470, August Term 1835, 18 Aug 1835, page 11, 3rd entry, Amos and Elijah Wood, bond for letters of administration for the estate of William Wood, deceased. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9J7-H?i=11&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  19. Ibid., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 287 of 470, November Term 1842, 10 Nov 1842, page 521, 1st and 2n entry, Amos and Elijah Wood, bond for letters of administration and appraisers of estate of Bailey Wood Jr. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9KW-6?i=286&cat=100698 : accessed 31July 2022). 
  20. “West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch, Fayette > Will book, v. 001 1832-1866 > image 224 of 292 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:9392-C9SQ-5S?cc=1909099&wc=M6DN-5NG%3A179689901%2C179689902 : 23 October 2018) 
  21. “Court minutes and order books, 1837-1928,” Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 24 of 470, January Term 1836, 19 Jan 1836, page 34-35, Mary Wood’s dower rights. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9FB-T?i=23&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  22. 1900 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7602/), citing Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T623, 1854 rolls, Roll T623_1757, FHL microfilm 1241758; West Virginia, Fayette County, Mountain Cove, enumeration district 18, sheet 3A+3B, lines 50-52, household 48-49, Martin Hess (accessed 31 July 2022). 

52 Ancestors: #30 William WOOD died 1835 in Fayette County, (West) Virginia

“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 #30 in Amy Johnson Crow’s Challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

I’m starting a new generation of paternal ancestors with my 4th great-grandfather William WOOD. This generation has 23 known of a possible 32 individuals. They will take me to the end of the year and the end of this challenge.

#30 William WOOD died 1835 in Fayette County, (West) Virginia

During the early years of the American Revolutionary War (19 April 1775-14 January 1784) my 4th great-grandfather William WOOD was born in Greenbrier County, Virginia, to Bailey WOOD (d. 1826) and his wife Nancy (d. aft. 1826). As no date is known, I calculated the range for his birth, between 1776 and 1779, using the year of his marriage and the age groups that he was enumerated in on the 1810 through 1830 census:

1800 age 21 or older at time of marriage->->->born 1779 or earlier
1810 age group 26-44 (i.e. 31-44)->->->->->->born bet. 1766-1779
1820 age group 26-44 (i.e. 41-44)->->->->->->born bet. 1766-1779
1830 age group 50-59 (i.e. 51-54)->->->->->->born bet. 1776-1779

Update (24 July 2022): Recent research uncovered the first entry on the personal property tax list of Greenbrier County for William WOOD. The estimate for his birth has been changed from between 1776 and 1779 to about 1777 as he would have been 21 in 1798.1

Several family historians list William WOOD as William Hicks WOOD. I haven’t found documentation that shows a middle name or even a middle initial. Recent discussions with other researchers nearly convinced me that Nancy was the daughter of Joseph HICKS (aka HIX) and Melvina COLE. However, I found an old GenForum post from October 2006 by Kitty Steele Barrera in which she wrote, “I know that the Nancy Hicks/Bailey Wood connection is tentative because I was the first to make the connection. I posted “Bailey Wood married Nancy Hicks?” and before long, it was all over the internet as a fact.2 Kitty mentioned in another message in the same forum that she can be blamed for starting the rumor and the Hicks part is pure speculation.3

I would like to emphasize that William WOOD (no middle name or initial) was the son of Bailey WOOD and his wife Nancy (no maiden name). As with all brick walls, further research is needed to prove/disprove the Wood to Hicks connection. I’m open to discussions and/or suggestions on the subject.

William WOOD’s father died before 21 September 1826 as an indenture mentioning the heirs and legal representatives of Bailey WOOD, deceased, and Nancy WOOD, his widow, reads as follows:4,5

This indenture made the 21st day of September one thousand and eight hundred and twenty six between James Wood and Polly his wife, Bailey Wood and Lucertia his wife, William Wood and Mary his wife, Richard Skaggs and Susannah his wife, Martin McGraw and Nancy his wife, Samuel McGraw and Elizabeth his wife, Katherine Wood, heirs and legal representatives of Bailey Wood, deceased, and Nancy Wood widow of Bailey Wood, deceased, of the county of Nicholas and state of Virginia of the one part…

From this we can “assume” that the following individuals were Bailey’s children:

• Susannah b. abt 1776 md. Richard SKAGGS 17896
• William b. abt. 1776-1779 md. Mary Ann McGRAW 18007
• Nancy b. abt. 1785 md. MARTIN McGRAW 18068
• Bailey b. abt. 1785 md. Lucretia SKAGGS bef. 1807
• James b. abt. 1790 md. Mary “Polly” HALSTEAD 18109
• Elizabeth b. abt. 1796 md. Samuel McGRAW 181210
• Katherine b. abt. ?? no record of marriage

Lyle Lemasters, who did an immense amount of work on the WOOD family, suggested that heirs do not necessarily mean children of the deceased. Heirs could also have been grandchildren. Bailey’s sons James and Bailey Jr. both had daughters named Catherine. Katherine may have been a daughter or a granddaughter (daughter of a deceased son) as the name ran in the family. She may be the Catherine WOOD (born between 1794 and 1800) seen in the 185011 and 186012 census with a younger James C. WOOD (b. between 1823 and 1830). Neither has been located after 1860.

In June 1800 Martin and Margaret McGRAW gave permission for their daughter Mary Ann to marry William WOOD.13

1800permission
Martin and Margaret McGraw give permission for their daughter Mary Ann to marry William Wood. West Virginia Division of Culture and History

On the 3rd of June 1800, William WOOD and John WOOD went bond on the marriage of William WOOD and Mary Ann McGRAW in Monroe County, (West) Virginia.14

1800bond
Marriage Bond of Wiliam WOOD and Mary Ann McGRAW. West Virginia Division of Culture and History.

Who was John WOOD who witnessed the permission slip and went bond with William WOOD when he married Mary Ann McGRAW? John WOOD and Stephen WOOD were in the same area as William in 1820. Could he have been an older brother?

William and Mary Ann were married by Rev. John Alderson on the 18th of June 1800.15

1800marriage
Entry in the marriage register. West Virginia Division of Culture and History.

Six months after his marriage on 16 January 1801 William was granted 109 acres in the Valley and on Peters Mountain adjoining his own land called the Cave Survey &c in Greenbrier County.16

On 21 February 1809, David GRAHAM sold to William WOOD 214 acres for $1.00 on Hunget Creek adj. Henry Bank’s surveys.17

As the amount of land he owned grew, so did the family of William and Mary Ann:

  • Enoch J. abt. 1801
  • Margaret “Peggy” abt. 1801
  • _____ (female) bet. 1804-1809
  • Elijah abt. 1806
  • Amos abt. 1807
  • Allen abt. 1814
  • Bailey bet. 1816-1819
  • _____ (female) bet. 1816-1819
  • Mary Ann “Polly” 5 June 1824

1810 U.S. Federal Census18
Monroe County, (West) Virginia
William Wood
Free White Persons – Males – Under 10: 2 (Elijah 4 and Amos 3)
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 15: 1 (Enoch 9)
Free White Persons – Males – 26 thru 44 : 1 (William 33)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 10: 2 (Margaret 9 and _____ <10)
Free White Persons – Females – 26 thru 44: 1 (wife, Mary Ann)
Number of Household Members Under 16: 5
Number of Household Members Over 25: 2
Number of Household Members: 7

On 9 September 1812 William WOOD, grantee, received 200 acres: 1) 100 acres on the Trace Fork of Mud River adjoining and above a survey made for John McCalister called the Bridge Creek Survey in Kanawha County19 and 2) 100 acres on Bryans Fork of Browns Creek in Kanawha.20

1820 U.S. Federal Census21
Nicholas County, (West) Virginia
William Wood (pg. 205)
Free White Persons – Males – Under 10: 3 (Bailey, Allen, and ?)
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 15:  2 (Elijah 14 and Amos 13)
Free White Persons – Males – 26 thru 44 : 1 (William 43)
Free White Persons – Females – Under 5: (_____ <5)
Free White Persons – Females – 16 thru 25: (_____ 16-19)
Free White Persons – Females – 26 thru 44 : 1 (wife, Mary Ann)
Note: On the same sheet are Bailey, Stephen, and John!!!

On 22 March 1822 William WOOD was granted 50 acres on the waters of New River in Nicholas County.22

A little over seven months later, on 1 November 1822 William WOOD, James SKAGGS, and Samuel WISEMAN were granted 75 acres on the Sugar Camp Creek a south branch of Gauley River in Nicholas County.23

By this time William had acquired nearly 650 acres of land. Did he still own all of it or did he sell some or give parcels to his children?

Six months after the birth of his youngest child Mary Ann, William’s son Elijah WOOD married Rachel HONAKER (1804-1860) on 4 January 1825 in Nicholas County, (West) Virginia.24

A year later William’s father Bailey WOOD was dead. We do not know when he died but his legal heirs sold his land on 21 September 1826 in Monroe County, (West) Virginia to John ALDERSON. William’s mother Nancy was still living; it is not known when she died.

At about the same time two more of William’s children married: 1) Margaret “Peggy” WOOD married Thomas WITHROW (1806-1880) on 12 October 1826 in Nicholas County25 and 2) Enoch J. WOOD married Margaret JOHNSON (1800-1850) bef. 1827.

I had a hard time with the 1830 census. In the early days, I’d found an abstract of the census 1830 by Neva Jane Stout Bryant.26 The numbers for William WOOD fit the family group. However, when I checked Ancestry years later I found that their abstract did not match Neva’s and the image was illegible. Last week I checked the Internet Archive using a tip by another blogger27 and found a much better image.

I was able to get this image.28 My transcription matched Neva’s:

1830census
1830 U.S. Federal Census > Virginia > Nicholas > William Wood. [Internet Archive https://archive.org/stream/populationsc18300198unit#page/n387/mode/1up%5D
1830 U.S. Federal Census
Nicholas County, (West) Virginia
William Woods (sic)
Home in 1830 (City, County, State): Nicholas, Virginia
Free White Persons – Males – Under 5: 1 (unknown)
Free White Persons – Males – 10 thru 14: 1 (Bailey)
Free White Persons – Males – 15 thru 19: 1 (Allen)
Free White Persons – Males – 20 thru 29 : 1 (Amos)
Free White Persons – Males – 50 thru 59: 1 (William)
Free White Persons – Females – 5 thru 9: 1 (Mary Ann)
Free White Persons – Females – 10 thru 14: 1 (unknown 10-14)
Free White Persons – Females – 30 thru 39: 1 (unknown 26-35)
Free White Persons – Females – 40 thru 49: 1 (wife, Mary Ann)
Free White Persons – Under 20: 5
Free White Persons – 20 thru 49: 4
Total Free White Persons: 9
Total – All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 9

“It is interesting to know the names of the houses and of the proprietors who made famous the great state stands along the James River and Kanawha Turnpike.” The list of proprietors of the famous stage stands included William WOOD was at Dogwood Gap.29

A tax list places William WOOD in the newly formed Fayette County on 5 June 1831 1831.30

William WOOD was not moving around from 1800 until this 1831 tax list. He lived in Monroe, Nicholas, and Fayette counties but his location remained the same. The formation of new counties in old Virginia was the reason he lived in several counties but never actually moved from his homeplace.

Before William’s death in 1835 his sons Amos and Allen married. Amos WOOD married Susan PARRISH (d. bef. 1845) on 12 May 1831 in Nicholas County and Allen WOOD married Elizabeth JOHNSON (1808-1881) on 14 November 1832 in Monroe County.31,32

William WOOD died in the summer of 1835, before 18 August 1835 when his sons Amos and Elijah filed a bond for the letters of administration.33 He left no will and his estate was appraised.34

The Appraisement Bill of the Estate of Wm Wood decd Fayette County September 14th 1835. In compliance with an order made by the County Court of Fayette at the August term. We Jones McCutcheon, William S. McVey and George Hunter after having been duly sworn by James Skaggs a Justice of the Peace for said County proceeded to appraise the following property, to-wit:

1 table 4.00
1 cutting knife and steel 1.50
1 foot adds .50
1 jug .371/2
1 Hoe and shovel .871/2
1 grindstone .50
2 old sickles .50
300 feet of plank 3.00
1 hoe .371/2
1 pig in the pen 1.00
1 man’s saddle 6.00
1 Books .75
1 pail .25
1 chain log hook and ox yoke 1.75
1 pair hames and chains 1.25
1 half bushel .25
1 wind mill 16.00
1 lot of wheat in the sheaf 10.00
1 lot of oats in the sheaf 75.00
unbroke flax 1.00
1 Barshear plow 5.00
12 head of sheape 10.50
1 yearling heifer 3.50
1 ox 20.00
1 small black bull 8.00
1 cow with a bull 12.00
1 large spotted cow 10.00
1 muly cow 8.00
9 geese 2.25
13 head of hogs 34.00
1 gray filly 35.00
1 bay mare 15.00
2 1/2 acres of corn 8.00
9 acres of corn 20.00
1 calf 1.00
1 mattock 1.25
1 axe 2.00
1 kittle 3.00
1 oven and lid 1.50
1 pot .50
1 oven 1.00
1 tub and churn 1.00
1 barrel and pail .62 1/2
1 shovel plow 1.00
1 pot rack 1.00
1 tub .50
1 woman’s saddle 3.00
1 hand saw 1 auger and two chisels 2.00
1 shovel .50
1 meal sifter .37 1/2
1 rifle gun and shot pouch 10.00
1 big wheel 2.00
1 spinning wheel 1.00
1 clock 15.00
1 press 8.00
1 small chest .25
1 old table .25
1 looking glass .75
1 smoothing iron, blowing horn and strainer .50
1 coffee mill .37 1/2
1 skillet and lid 1.00
1 pot and two pair of hooks 1.00
4 chairs 1.00
1 coffee pot .37 1/2
1 pair cords .37 1/2
1 cooler .25
Cupboard ware 2.75
1 loom 2.00
3 beads and bedding 50.00
1 due bill on Samuel Shawver .75
1 note on John Gwinn Signr. 10.00
1 note on Samuel Withrow 2.25
1 oald ax and tomahawk .25
Chairs and iron wedge .50
——————————— 429.41
James McCutcheon, William S. McVey, George Hunter Appraisers Fayette County Court-The Appraisement Bill of the Estate of William Wood deceased was received in open court and ordered to be recorded. Teste: Hiram Hill cfc.

His sons Elijah and Amos were administrators of his estate per the 1836 Bill of Sale found in Fayette County.35 His widow Mary and sons Elijah, Amos, and Allen (A. Wood on the bill) bought items in his inventory. His oldest son Enoch was living in Ohio. Elijah, the next oldest son, was assigned as the guardian of Bailey and Mary Ann, children of William WOOD, deceased.36

This Post was Updated on 24 July 2022Missing source citations were added, images were scaled, and some corrections were made to the text and format.

© 2014-2022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. Virginia. Commissioner of the Revenue (Greenbrier County), “Personal property tax lists, 1782-1850,” (browse-only images), FamilySearch Microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film 2024557, DGS 7849126, Personal property tax lists, 1782-1816 > 1782 > image 361 of 891 > 1798 Personal Property Tax List > William Wood 1 0 0 1 9¢ tax. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSQ2-3S3V-D?i=359&cat=777465 : accessed 16 July 2022). 
  2. GenForum, Hicks Surname Forum, message 9940, Re: Bailey Woods and Nancy Hicks by Kitty Steele 29 October 2006 in reply to: Re: Bailey Woods and Nancy Hicks by Larry Surface 29 October 2006 (https://www.genealogy.com/forum/surnames/topics/hicks/9940/ : accessed July 2014) 
  3. Ibid., Wood Surname Forum, message 13961, Re: WOOD family–where in VIRGINIA? by Kitty Steele 25 November 2004 in reply to: Re: WOOD family–where in VIRGINIA? by Alice Hanson 15 November 2004 (https://www.genealogy.com/forum/surnames/topics/wood/13961/ : accessed July 2014) 
  4. Fox, Vernon A.,  Nicholas County, (West) Virginia Land Deed, Heirs of Bailey Wood to John Alderson, 21 September 1826, transcription received per email 31 May 2001. 
  5. County Clerk of the County Court, Monroe County (West Virginia), “Deed book, 1789-1901” and “Deed index, 1789-1969” (manuscript on film, browse-only images), FamilySearch (Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1969; 34 microfilm reels; 35 mm), Film 589502, DGS 8219401, Deed book, v. N 1840-1846, pages 187-189, image 124+125 of 411. Citing microfilm of original records at the Monroe County courthouse, Union. 1826 Bailey Wood heirs to John Alderson deed of bargain and sale. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSGX-491G-C?i=123&cat=98998 : accessed 1 January 2020). 
  6. West Virginia Vital Research Records Project (database and images), West Virginia Division of Culture and History citing county records in county courthouses, West Virginia (A collaborative venture between the West Virginia State Archives and the Genealogical Society of Utah to place vital records online via the West Virginia Archives and History Web site accessible at https://archive.wvculture.org/vrr), West Virginia, Greenbrier County, 10 March 1789, Susannah Wood and Richard Scags married by John Alderson. 1789 Marriage Record (right page, 7th entry from bottom).  (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=10975982&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  7. Ibid., West Virginia, Monroe County, Marriage Bond dated 18 June 1800 William Wood and John Wood went bond on the marriage of William Wood and Mary Anne McGraw (both of Monroe). (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11370480&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  8. Ibid., West Virginia, Monroe County, 3 May 1806, Nancy Wood and Martin McGraw married by John Alderson, banns were published. 1806 Marriage Record (right page, 4th entry from bottom). (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11369727&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  9. Ibid., West Virginia, Monroe County, 26 April 1810, James Wood and Mary Halstead married by John Alderson. 1810 Marriage Record entry (right page, last entry). (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11369380&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  10. Ibid., West Virginia, Monroe County, marriage bond dated 19 May 1812, Samuel McGraw and Bailey Wood went bond on the marriage of Bailey’s daughter Elizabeth Wood and Samuel McGraw. 1812 Marriage Bond. (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11371819&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  11. 1850 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), <i>Ancestry</i> (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, Year: 1850; Census Place: District 14, Fayette, Virginia; Roll: M432_943; Page: 336B; Image: 278. The official enumeration day of the 1850 census was 1 June 1850. (https://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 8 January 2020). 
  12. 1860 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), <i>Ancestry</i> (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, Year: 1860; Census Place: District 3, Fayette, Virginia; Roll: M653_1344; Page: 373; Family History Library Film: 805344. The official enumeration day of the 1860 census was 1 June 1860. (https://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 8 January 2020). 
  13. WVCulture.org, West Virginia, Monroe County, June 1800, William Wood and Mary Ann McGraw, permission slip from her parents. “June /newline/ Sir, this coms (sic) to let you now (sic) that I Marten and Marget Mcgraw is wiling that William Wood should have our daughter Mary Ann /newline/ To John Hutchason (Clerk) /newline/ The above was sworn to by John Wood one of the witnesses present.” 1800 Marriage Permission Slip. (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11370465&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  14. Marriage Bond dated 18 June 1800 William Wood and John Wood went bond on the marriage of William Wood and Mary Anne McGraw (both of Monroe) 
  15. WVCulture.org, West Virginia, Monroe County, 18 June 1800 William Wood and Mary Ann McGraw married by John Alderson. 1800 Marriage Record entry (right page, 1st entry under Alderson). (http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view.aspx?Id=11369625&Type=Marriage : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  16. “Land Office/Northern Neck Patents & Grants” (index and images from microfilm), Library of Virginia Archives (https://lva-virginia.libguides.com/land-grants), citing Virginia State Land Office, the collection is housed in the Archives at the Library of Virginia, Land Office Grants No. 46, 1797-1801, p. 624-625 (Reel 112), Wood, William (grantee), Land grant 16 January 1801, 109 acres in the Valley and on Peters Mountain adjoining his own land called the Cave Survey &c. (Greenbrier County). (https://lva.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01LVA_INST/altrmk/alma990008446350205756 : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  17. Monroe County (West Virginia), Clerk of the County Court, “Deed book, 1789-1901; deed index, 1789-1969,” database with images, FamilySearch, citing microfilm of original records at the Monroe County courthouse, Union, Deed book, v. B-C 1805-1812, images 349-350 of 636, Deed Book B, page 632-633, 21 February 1809 David Graham to William Wood 214 acres for $1.00 on Hunget Creek adj. Henry Bank’s Surveys. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKV-KSN9-J?i=348&cat=98998 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  18. 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, Family History Library Film: 0181430, Virginia, Monroe, image 22, page 575, William Wood household. The official enumeration day of the 1810 census was the 1st Monday in August (6th). “.” (https://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 2 January 2020). 
  19. “Land Office/Northern Neck Patents & Grants,”  Land Office Grants No. 63, 1812-1813, p. 195-196 (Reel 129), Wood, William (grantee), Land grant 9 Sep 1812, 100 acres on the Trace Fork of Mud River adjoining and above a survey made for John McCalister called the Bridge Creek Survey (Kanawha County). (https://lva.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01LVA_INST/altrmk/alma990008446370205756 : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  20. Ibid., Land Office Grants No. 63, 1812-1813, p. 196-198 (Reel 129), Wood, William (grantee), Land grant 9 September 1812, 100 acres on Bryans Fork of Browns Creek (Kanawha County). (https://lva.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01LVA_INST/altrmk/alma990008446380205756 : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  21. 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, 1820 U S Census; Census Place: Nicholas, Virginia; Page: 205A; NARA Roll: M33_130; Image: 389. The official enumeration day of the 1820 census was the 1st Monday in August (7th). (https://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 8 January 2020). 
  22. “Land Office/Northern Neck Patents & Grants,” Land Office Grants No. 71, 1822-1824, p. 47 (Reel 137), Wood, William. grantee, Land grant 22 March 1822, 50 acres on the waters of New River (Nicholas County). (https://lva.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01LVA_INST/altrmk/alma990008446390205756 : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  23. Ibid., Land Office Grants No. 71, 1822-1824, p. 408-409 (Reel 137), Grantee(s): Skaggs, James; Wm. Wood, and Samuel Wiseman, Land grant 1 November 1822, 75 acres (Nicholas County). (https://lva.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01LVA_INST/altrmk/alma990008446400205756 : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  24. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 495643, image 130, West Virginia, Re-Index and Copy of Marriage Record No. 1–Nicholas County, line 6, 4 Jan 1925, Elijah Wood and Rachel Hannaker, married by Jno Campbell, citing Nicholas County. (http://images.wvculture.org/495643/00130.jpg : accessed 25 April 2013). 
  25. Ibid., West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 495643, image 130, Re-Index and Copy of Marriage Record No. 1—Nicholas County, no page number, 9th entry, 12 Oct 1826, Thos Withrow, Margaret Wood, married by John Campbell. (http://images.wvculture.org/495643/00130.jpg : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  26. 1830 Federal Census Nicholas County, Virginia (File 3 of 3), Submitted by Neva Jane Stout Bryant July 25, 2001 (http://files.usgwarchives.net/wv/nicholas/census/1830c.txt
  27. Pointer, Caroline M, 4yourfamilystory.com blog and website, “Census Records for Free with the One-Two Punch {While Wearing Pink Bunny Slippers},” (https://www.4yourfamilystory.com/blog/census-records-for-free-with-the-one-two-punch-while-wearing-pink-bunny-slippers : published 16 July 2013). 
  28. Internet Archive, 1830 Virginia Federal Population Census Schedules – Monroe, Montgomery, Morgan, Mason, Nicholas, and Ohio Counties, Reel 0198, image 388 of 588, Virginia, Nicholas County, page 191, line 10, William Wood (https://archive.org/stream/populationsc18300198unit#page/n387/mode/1up : accessed about 21 July 2014) 
  29. J. T. Peters and H.B. Carden, History of Fayette County, West Virginia, Jarrett Print Co., Charleston, WV, 1926, page 135. 
  30. Virginia. Commissioner of the Revenue (Fayette County), “Personal property tax lists, 1831-1850,” (browse-only images), FamilySearch Microfilm of original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film 2024536, DGS 7849112, image 22 of 589, 1831 page 20. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSQK-19VN-9?i=21&cat=777450 : accessed 3 April 2022). 
  31. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 495643, image 130, Re-Index and Copy of Marriage Record No. 1—Nicholas County, no page number, 14th entry, 12 May 1831, Amos Wood, Susan Parish, married by W. Carnefix. (http://images.wvculture.org/495643/00130.jpg : accessed 22 July 2014). 
  32. Ibid., West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 1710879, image 516, 14 Nov 1832, Allen Wood and Charles W Johnson bond for the marriage of Allen Wood and Elizabeth Johnson. (http://images.wvculture.org/1710879/00516.jpg : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  33. “Court minutes and order books, 1837-1928,” browse-only images, FamilySearch, citing microfilm of original records at the Fayette County, West Virginia courthouse., Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 12 of 470, August Term 1835, 18 Aug 1835, page 11, 3rd entry, Amos and Elijah Wood, bond for letters of administration. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9J7-H?i=11&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 
  34. “West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch, Fayette > Will book, v. 001 1832-1866 > image 33 of 292  (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:9392-C9SQ-75?cc=1909099&wc=M6DN-5NG%3A179689901%2C179689902 : 23 October 2018) 
  35. Ibid., Fayette > Will book, v. 001 1832-1866 > image 39 of 292 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:9392-C9SQ-97?cc=1909099&wc=M6DN-5NG%3A179689901%2C179689902 : 23 October 2018), 
  36. Court minutes and order books, 1837-1928, Film 585502, DGS 8613652, Minute books, v. 1-2 1837-1848, image 24 of 470, January Term 1836, 19 Jan 1836, page 35, Elijah assigned as guardian of young Bailey and Mary Ann Wood, children of William Wood. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C34C-T9FB-T?i=23&cat=100698 : accessed 23 July 2022). 

52 Ancestors: #12 Civil War Baby, Gordon Washington ROOP 1862-1930

“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 my 12th entry in Amy Johnson Crow’s Challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

#12 Civil War Baby, Gordon Washington ROOP 1862-1930

My great-great-grandfather Gordon Washington ROOP, a photographer, miner, and farmer, was born 6 May 1862 in Floyd County, Virginia, during the Civil War.1

Gordon’s father enlisted in Jacksonville as a private on 10 September 1861 in Company A, 54th Regiment of the Virginia Infantry, for a period of one year.2 He may not have known at the time that his wife was pregnant with their third child. The 54th was engaged in battles in Bourbon County, Kentucky, on 15 April 1862 and at Princeton, (West) Virginia, on 16 May 1862. Was Gordon’s father given a furlough to be at home for the birth of his son?

Gordon’s father must have worried about his young family while he continued to serve in the Confederate army. He was NOT one of the nearly 23 percent of Floyd County men who chose to abandon the cause. The Confederate Conscription Act of April 1862 may have forced him to extend his service, when his initial commitment of one year expired, to a total of three years.

On the 19th and 20th of September 1863, while Gordon was learning to walk and beginning to talk, his father was fighting his last battle at Chickamauga in Georgia. On 1 November 1863, when young Gordon was a year and a half, his father died in Flewellen Hospital, Cassville, Bartow County, Georgia.3

Parents and Siblings

Gordon’s parents Gordon H. ROOP (1838-1863) and Emaline LESTER (1836-1877) married on 10 March 1856 in Floyd County, Virginia.4 They had two children by 1860: Dollie Ann Ellen (1857-1937) born 24 February 1857 and John Thomas (1859-1902) born 6 March 1859, both in Floyd County, Virginia.5,6,7

When the American Civil War began on 4 February 1861 the young family of four was living in Floyd County. Emaline gave birth to her second son and third child, Gordon Washington ROOP, on 6 May 1862. He was given his father’s first name and, as a middle name, the surname of the first U.S. President. Sadly we do not know how much time Gordon Sr. was able to spend with his family while serving in the Civil War until his early death at the age of 25 in 1863.

Mother Remarries

The end of the Civil War in June 1865 brought changes to America, Virginia, and families in Floyd County. We don’t know what price Gordon, his mother Emaline, and his siblings paid for his father’s loyalty to the Confederacy. Gordon’s mother Emaline waited nearly six years to remarry. She was 32 when she married Pleasant D. EPPERLY, 21, son of Solomon EPPERLY and Rachel RATLIFF, on 6 February 1869 in Floyd County.8 A year later we see Gordon and his siblings in the household of their step-father and mother in the 1870 census.9

1870epperleyroop1
1870 U.S. Federal Census > Virginia > Floyd > Alum Ridge > Page 2 > HH#13-13
1870epperleyroop2
1870 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Floyd > Alum Ridge > Page 3 > HH#13-13

Siblings Marry

Gordon’s sister Dollie Ann Ellen married her 2nd cousin 1 time removed Giles SUMNER (1855-1920) on 1 7 November 1873 in Floyd County.10 His brother John Thomas married Ardelia E. WAITMAN (1858-?) on 16 November 1876 in Camp Creek, Floyd County.11

Orphaned at Fifteen

A little over a year after John’s marriage, Gordon was orphaned at the age of 15 when his mother died on 13 December 1877.12 Did Gordon stay with his step-father or did he go to live with his sister or his brother?

Gordon and his siblings were close to their ROOP and LESTER grandparents as well as the SUMNER family, their great-grandparents. I hope that he was well taken care of until he married two years later.

pedigreegordon
Screenshot of five-generation pedigree for Gordon Washington ROOP generated by Ancestral Quest 14

Marries at Seventeen

 

1880rooppetersmarriage 002
Photocopy of Marriage License obtained by Louise Roop Anderson Akers on 24 Feb 2001 from the records of the Circuit Court, County of Floyd, Virginia. Louise sent the original certified copy to me in April 2001.

William L. SIMMONS joined Gordon Washington ROOP, age 17, and Milla Susan PETERS, age 23, in marriage on 1 January 1880 in Floyd County at Jordan PETERS’ residence. On the marriage record, the ages of the bride and groom were fudged. Gordon was listed as 21 and Milla as 20.13

Gordon and Milla were first seen together on the 1880 census. They lived on Alum Ridge in Floyd County near the Montgomery County line.14

1880roop
1880 U.S. Federal Census > Virginia > Floyd > Alum Ridge > ED 25 Page 4 Sheet 264B > HH#59-59

Becomes a Father at Eighteen

Gordon and his wife Milla did not wait long to start their family. They had five children, four sons and a daughter, in ten years:

Ch 1: George Washington ROOP (1880-1950) born 19 September 1880in Floyd County, Virginia.15
Ch 2: Walter Farmer ROOP (1883-1971) born 16 April 1883 in Montgomery County, Virginia.16
Ch 3: Charles Turner ROOP (1885-1966) born 15 June 1885 in Montgomery County, Virginia. The father’s residence at the time was Raleigh County, West Virginia, and the birth was recorded there.17
Ch 4: James H. “Old Man Jim” ROOP (1887-1962) born 30 May 1887 at Snuffer’s Branch, Clear Creek, Raleigh County, West Virginia.18
Ch 5: _____ ROOP (1890-1891) born in June 1890 in Kanawha County, West Virginia. She died in a house fire in 1891.19

Moves His Family to West Virginia

By 1885 Gordon moved his family to Raleigh County in West Virginia where he had the birth of his son Charles recorded. After the birth of their fourth son James, Gordon and Milla and their four sons moved to Kanawha County where their only daughter was born in 1890.

Wife and Daughter Die in a House Fire

Sadly the daughter born in June 1890 was not named and died with her mother in a house fire in 1891 according to family tradition as recounted in genealogy notes by Linda Pearl Dickey Roop. Neither death records nor newspaper articles have been found to confirm the story and year of this event.

Linda Pearl Dickey Roop (1943-1994) collaborated with Everette L. McGrew (1923-2008) on a book on the Roop family. In the summer of 1994, she was diagnosed with cancer and died a month later. Everette took over the task of finishing the book which he titled My Mother Was A Rupe. He gave me an updated copy in 2002. Linda had done most of the work on our direct line as her husband is the grandson of Old Man Jim, Gordon’s fourth son.

Motherless Children Go into Foster Care

The four motherless boys were placed in the home of Henry SNUFFER, the Sheriff of Kanawha County, and his brother, Lee SNUFFER, until Gordon was able to care for them. Linda wrote,

Gordon married second to Nancy E. Johnson. When Gordon returned for his children, Walter, Charles and George went with him but James wanted to stay with the only family he knew, the Snuffers, so Gordon let him stay rather than insist he go with him. Henry and Martha E. Snuffer were a loving married couple who could not have children of their own. They took in and raised with loving care many children who had lost their parents.”

Further research brought to light that Lee and Eliza Snuffer, like Henry and Martha, did not have children of their own. James was living in Henry Snuffer’s and Charles was in Lee Snuffer’s households in 1900.20,21 Walter was with Gordon and his second family.22 George was not found. Is it possible that Charles, like his brother James, also wanted to remain with the Snuffer family he had been living with?

Mentioned in his Grandfather’s Will in 1890

Gordon’s grandfather James ROOP dated his will 31 January 1890.23 He died on 2 November 1890 and the final settlement of the will was made on 18 September 1897 in Floyd County, Virginia.24 In his will, James ROOP mentioned among others, his son Gordon ROOP’s children Thomas, Gordon, and Dolly.

Marries a Second Time and Fathers More Children

Gordon Washington ROOP and Nancy Elizabeth JOHNSON (1860-1949) were married on 25 August 1894 in Pond Gap, Kanawha County, West Virginia, by L. D. Hill.25

They had five children in five years:

Ch 6: Samuel Pasley “Sam” ROUPE (1895-1956) born 30 October 1895 in Blue Creek, Kanawha County, West Virginia.26
Ch 7: Julia Ann ROOP (1897-1990) born 4 January 1897 in Cannelton, Kanawha County, West Virginia.27
Ch 8: Amanda O. “Mandy” ROOP (1898-1994) born 20 March 1898 in Hughes Creek, Kanawha County, West Virginia.28
Ch 9: Hallie Beatrice ROOP (1899-1944) born 10 September 1899 in Kanawha County, West Virginia.29
Ch 10: Hazel Vern ROOP (1900-1976) was born 28 December 1900 in Kanawha County, West Virginia.30

1900 U.S. Federal Census

1900 U.S. Federal Census > West Virginia > Kanawha > Cabin Creek > ED No. 41, Sheet No. 2B

1900 U.S. Federal Census
Kanawha County, West Virginia
Cabin Creek District
Enumeration District No. 41, Sheet No. 2B
Enumerated the 4th day of June, 1900, Mrs. Branham, enumerator
HH #33-33
Roop, Gordon W. head W M May 1862 38 married 6 years VA VA VA Photographer can read & write speaks English; rents home
Roop, Nancy E. wife W F Aug 1861 38 married 6 years mother of 4, 4 living WV VA WV can read & write speaks English
Roop, Samuel P. son W M Oct 1895 4 single WV VA WV
Roop, Julie A. daughter W F Jan 1897 3 single WV VA WV
Roop, Amanda daughter W F March 1898 2 single WV VA WV
Roop, Hallie B. daughter W F Oct 1899 9/12 single WV VA WV
Roop, Walter F. son W M Apr 1883 17 single VA VA VA Day Laborer hadn’t worked 6 mos attended school 1 mos. can read & write speaks English

1910 U.S. Federal Census

1910censusroopg
1910 U.S. Federal Census > WV > Kanawha > Roe > ED 54 Sheet 6A > HH #100-106

1910 U.S. Federal Census
Kanawha County, West Virginia
Roe Precinct
Enumeration District No. 54, Sheet No. 6A
Enumerated the 22nd day of April, 1910, J. B. Moon, enumerator
Hughes Creek, HH #100-106
Roop, Gordon W. head M W 47 married(2) 15 years VA VA VA speaks English Farmer, small farm, own account can read & write rents farm
Roop, Nancy E. wife F W 49 married(1) 15 years mother of 5, 5 living WV VA WV speaks English none can read & write
Roop, Samuel P son M W 14 single WV VA WV speaks English none can read & write, attended school
Roop, Julia A. daughter F W 13 single WV VA WV speaks English none can read & write, attended school
Roop, Amanda daughter F W 12 single WV VA WV speaks English none can read & write, attended school
Roop, Hallie B. daughter F W 10 single WV VA WV speaks English none can read & write, attended school
Roop, Hazel V. daughter F W 9 single WV VA WV none attended school
Roop, Myrtle M. granddaughter F W 2 single WV WV WV; none
Martin, Nancy wife’s aunt F W 73 single WV WV WV speaks English none can read & write 31

1920 U.S. Federal Census

1920roop
1920 U.S. Federal Census > WV > Kanawha > Cabin Creek > ED 79 Sheet 7B > HH#38

1920 U.S. Federal Census
Kanawha County, West Virginia
Hughes Creek, Cabin Creek Magisterial District
Enumeration District No. 79, Sheet No. 7B
Enumerated the 12th day of January, 1920, John M. Tucker, enumerator.
HH #38
Roop, G. W. head rents M W 59 married can read & write VA VA VA speaks English Farmer, farm, own account
Roop, N. E. wife F W 59 married WV VA WV speaks English none
Roop, July daughter F W 22 single can read & write WV WV WV speaks English; none
Roop, Hallie daughter F W 20 single can read & write WV WV WV speaks English; none
Bess, Flavl grandson M W 1 single WV WV WV none (poss. Flavil Schultz, s/o Hallie and Charles Schultz)
Roop, Floyd grandson M W 2 single WV WV WV none (poss. Floyd Hapney, s/o Julia and Lemon Hapney)32

Dies at the Home of his Daughter

According to Linda Pearl Dickey Roop, before he died Gordon was living with his daughter, Amanda WITHROW in Donnally Hollow in Kanawha City, West Virginia so that he could get to the doctors more easily. Gordon Washington ROOP died at 6:30 a.m. on 30 January 1930 in Kanawha City. The cause of death was pulmonary tuberculosis with the contributory factor being cardio-renal disease. He was buried in Jodie, Fayette County.33

Gordon’s son Walter Farmer ROOP was the informant on the death certificate. Walter didn’t know the name of his grandmother and he got the name of his grandfather wrong. Or did he? The name he gave was Ham ROOP. Gordon’s father’s middle initial was H. in Civil War records. Is it possible that the H. was for Hamilton even though Gordon Sr.’s youngest brother was named Hamilton Null ROOP? Could Uncle Hamilton have raised Gordon Jr. after both his parents’ deaths?

Gordon Washington ROOP was survived by his second wife, all of his children except for the baby girl who died in the house fire, and his sister Dollie. His children’s families continued to grow giving him a total of 50 known grandchildren, 10 still living in 2014.

Gordon’s second wife Nancy Elizabeth Johnson died 14 June 1949 in Charleston.34,35

1949obit
The Charleston Gazette, Wednesday, June 15, 1949

 

This Post Was Updated on 20 March 2022: Missing source citations were added and some corrections were made to the text and format.© 2014-2022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. Find A Grave, database and images, (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/209078601/gordon-w-roop : accessed 28 February 2022), memorial page for Gordon W. Roop (6 May 1862–31 Jan 1931), Find a Grave Memorial ID 209078601, citing Rich Creek Cemetery, Jodie, Fayette County, West Virginia, USA; maintained by Jennifer Nottingham (contributor 49369720). 
  2. “Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers Who Served in Organizations from the State of Virginia,” database with images, Fold3, NARA microfilm publication M324 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1961), roll 957. Gorden Roop, 1862, citing military unit Fifty-fourth Infantry (https://www.fold3.com/document/12913765/roop-gorden-page-3-civil-war-service-records-cmsr-confederate-virginia: accessed 12 February 2014). 
  3. Ibid., Fifty-fourth Regiment Virginia Infantry, Gordon Roop, 1 Nov 1863 in  Flewellen Hospital, Cassville, Georgia. “Name appears on a Register of Officers and Soldiers of the Army of the Confederate States who were killed in battle, or who died of wounds or disease.”  (https://www.fold3.com/document/12913782/roop-gorden-page-4-civil-war-service-records-cmsr-confederate-virginia: accessed February 2014). 
  4. Rena Worthen & BarbR (co-project), “Index to Marriages of Floyd County, Virginia 1831-1940 (and few others too),” index and images, Floyd County, Virginia, The USGenWeb Project (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 & passed on to BarbR for indexing, 1856 Gordon Roop and Emeline Lester marriage.(http://sites.rootsweb.com/~vafloyd/Mar%20FCVA1856/FCVA1856RoopLester.jpg : accessed 2 March 2020). 
  5. West Virginia Vital Research Records Project (database and images), West Virginia Division of Culture and History citing county records in county courthouses, West Virginia (A collaborative venture between the West Virginia State Archives and the Genealogical Society of Utah to place vital records online via the West Virginia Archives and History Web site accessible at https://archive.wvculture.org/vrr), West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 1983330, image 883, West Virginia Standard Certificate of Death 18364, Mrs. Dollie Sumner, 14 December 1837, citing Clear Creek, Raleigh County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/1983330/0000883.gif : accessed 16 January 2007). Date of birth 24 February 1857. 
  6. Ibid., West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 598425, image 298, West Virginia, Raleigh County Register of Deaths, page 81, entry 56, Jno F Roop (sic), age 46y 6m 5d, 11 Sep 1902, citing Beckley, Raleigh County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/598425/00298.jpg : accessed 7 March 2022). 
  7. Documentation to prove date of birth not available. The FamilySearch collection, “Floyd County, Virginia Births, 1853-73” is only available at a family history library. John’s death record gives his age at death as 46y 6m 5d which calculates to 6 March 1856. This is off by 3 years as he was listed as 1 year old on the 1860 census and born March 1859 on the 1900 census. 
  8. Barbara Reininger, compiler and website owner of Families of Floyd County, Virginia, Floyd Co., Virginia Marriages, (https://sites.rootsweb.com/~vafloyd/BarbR_FCVAResearch/zz_marriages.htm), transcribed from images of microfilm records obtained by Rena Worthen from the Library of Virginia, “Marriage registers, 1843-1925,” film 31345 items 1-3, DGS 7578964, microfilm of original records at the Floyd County Courthouse, FCVA1869_0015; Register: 3. Page: 31. “Pleasant D. Epperly (3) m. Emaline Roop 02-08-1869 at Owen Sumner’s, Floyd Co., VA by Owen Sumner. He 21 yo single, farmer, b. & living in Floyd Co., VA, s/o Solomon & Rachael Epperly. She widowed 32 yo, b. & living in Floyd Co., VA, d/o Jacob & Syntha Lester.” The link to BarbR’s site was checked on 14 March 2022. The main page is available, however, the links to male and female marriages in alphabetical order are broken. 
  9. 1870 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), <i>Ancestry</i> (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_1646, Virginia, Floyd County, Alum Ridge, sheet 1B (stamped), page 2, lines 39-40, and sheet 2A (stamped) page 3, lines 1-3, household 13-13, Pleasant Epperly (accessed 18 October 2014). 
  10. Marguerite Tise, comp., The Lester Family of Floyd and Montgomery County Virginia (copyright 1996 Marguerite Tise, P.O. Box 343, Floyd, VA 24091-0343), page 20. 
  11. Barbara Reininger, Floyd Co., Virginia Marriages, FCVA1876_0084 Register: 3. Page: 51. “John T. Roop m. Ardelila E. Waitman 11-11-1876 at Camp Creek, Floyd Co., VA by M.A. Davidson. He 17y 8m, single w/m farmer, b. & living in Floyd Co., VA, s/o Gordon & Emeline Roop. She 17y 11m, single w/f, b. & living in Floyd Co., VA, d/o Charles H. & Talitha Waightman.” 
  12. “Virginia, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Death Records, 1853-1912”, database with images, FamilySearch, citing microfilm of the original records at the Virginia State Library at Richmond, Virginia, Death registers, 1853-1906 (Virginia), Film 2056980, DGS 4225427 > Floyd County, 1853-1896> image 153 of 673 > Register of Deaths 1877, line 7. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-DRMQ-65R?cc=3940896 : accessed 14 March 2022). 
  13. Barbara Reininger, Floyd Co., Virginia Marriages, FCVA1879_0137, register 3, page 61, “Gordon Washington Roop m. Milla Susan Peters 01-01-1880 at Jordon Peters’, Floyd Co., VA by William L. Simmons. He 21 yo single w/m farmer, b. & living in Floyd Co., VA, s/o Gordon & Emeline Roop. She 20 yo single w/f, b. Raleigh Co., VA & living in Floyd Co., VA, d/o Jordon N. & Rachel Peters.” 
  14. 1880 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/6742/), citing Tenth Census of the United States, 1880 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T9, 1,454 rolls, Roll: 1365, Virginia, Floyd County, Alum Ridge, enumeration district 25, sheet 264B, line 44-45, household 59-59, Gordon Roop (accessed 1 February 2022). 
  15. “Birth records (Virginia), 1853-1896; indexes, 1853-1899; delayed birth indexes, 1912-1950,” (index and images), FamilySearch, Virginia. Bureau of Vital Statistics citing microfilm of the original records at the Virginia State Library in Richmond, Virginia, Film 2046936, DGS 4284999, image 540 of 641, Virginia, Floyd County, Register of Births, 1880, line 120, George W. Rupe, 19 Sep 1880. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C9YR-DCZS?i=539 : accessed 31 January 2022). 
  16. Ibid., Film 2046951, DGS 4254461, Montgomery County births, 1853-1896, Montgomery County Register of Births 1883, page 177 (stamped), image 364 of 595, line 152, 16 April 1883, Walter F. Roop, Montgomery County, Gordon W. Roop, farmer, Milly S. Roop. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C9YG-5WT9-9?mode=g&i=363 : accessed 26 January 2022). 
  17. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 598415, image 232, West Virginia, Raleigh County, Register of Births 1885, line 239, 15 June 1885, Charles T. Roop, citing Montgomery County, Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/598415/00232.jpg : accessed 1 February 2022). 
  18. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 598415, image 249, West Virginia, Raleigh County, Register of Births 1887, line 230, 30 May 1887, James Roop, citing Raleigh County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/598415/00249.jpg : accessed 1 February 2022). 
  19. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 521730, image 408, West Virginia, Kanawha County, Register of Births 1890, line 46, June 1890, unnamed female Roop, citing Cabin Creek, Kanawha County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/521730/00408.jpg : accessed 1 February 2022). 
  20. 1900 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7602/), citing Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T623, 1854 rolls, FHL microfilm: 1241771, West Virginia, Raleigh County, Trap Hill, enumeration district 122, sheet 5A, lines 46-49, household 84-84, Hardy Snuffer (accessed 13 May 2005). 
  21. Ibid., FHL microfilm: 1241771, West Virginia, Raleigh County, Trap Hill, enumeration district 122, sheet 6A, lines 29-32, household 90-90, Lee Snuffer (accessed 22 November 2005. 
  22. Ibid., FHL microfilm: 1241761, West Virginia, Kanawha County, Cabin Creek, enumeration district 41, sheet 2B, lines 87-93, household 33-33, Gordon W. Roop (accessed 2 February 2022). 
  23. “Virginia, Wills and Probate Records, 1652-1983,” (images), Ancestry, citing original data of Virginia County, District, and Probate Courts, Floyd County, Virginia, Will Book F, page 486. The state of Virginia (and its respective counties that originally created these records) did not provide the appropriate permissions for these records to be placed online. The collection was removed from Ancestry’s Card Catalog prior to June 2016. Last Will and Testament of James Roop dated 31 January 1890.(https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/9085/images/007645227_00302 : accessed 14 March 2022). 
  24. Linda P. (Dickey) Roop (1943-1994), wife of Troy James Roop, wrote in her research that James Roop died 2 November 1890 in Floyd County, Virginia. Linda collaborated with Everette Llavon McGrew (1923-2008) on a book on the ROOP family. In the summer of 1994, she was diagnosed with cancer and died a month later. Everette took over the task of finishing the book which he titled My Mother Was A Rupe. He gifted me a copy of the revised August 2000 edition in 2002. 
  25. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 521720, image 432, West Virginia, Kanawha County Register of Marriages 1894, page 350-351 (stamped), line 276, 25 Aug 1894, Gordon W. Roop and Nancy E. Johnson, citing Kanawha County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/521720/00432.jpg : accessed 14 March 2022). 
  26. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 521730, image 490, Kanawha County Register of Births, page 187 (stamped), line 39, 30 Oct 1895, S. P. Roop. (http://images.wvculture.org/521730/00490.jpg : accessed 14 March 2022). 
  27. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 521730, image 534, Kanawha County Register of Births, page 229 (stamped), line 40, 4 Jan 1897, Julia Roop, citing Cannelton, Kanawha County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/521730/00534.jpg : accessed 14 March 2022). 
  28. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 521730, image 551, Kanawha County Register of Births, page 246 (stamped), line 12, 20 Mar 1898, Amanda Roop, citing Hughes Creek, Kanawha County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/521730/00551.jpg : accessed 14 March 2022). 
  29. Ibid., West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 580533, image 435, West Virginia, Wood County Register of Deaths, page 537 (stamped), 2nd entry, Hallie Beatrice Schultz, born 10 Sep (no year), died 24 Dec 1944 (no age at death). (http://archive.wvculture.org/vrr/va_view2.aspx?FilmNumber=580533&ImageNumber=435 : accessed 14 March 2022). Note: This entry in the death register doesn’t include a year of birth. She was listed on the 1900 census as born in October 1899 and no birth record has been found. 
  30. Everette L. McGrew, My Mother Was A Rupe (revised August 2000). 
  31. 1910 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7884/), citing Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C., NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls, Roll: T624_1684; FHL microfilm: West Virginia, Kanawha County, Roe Precinct, enumeration district 54, sheet 6A, lines 18-26, household 100-106, Gordon Roop (accessed 16 November 2002). The official enumeration day of the 1910 census was 15 April 1910. 
  32. 1920 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry  (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/6061/), citing Fourteenth Census of the United States, 1920 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C., NARA microfilm publication T625, 2076 rolls, Roll: T625_1957; West Virginia, Kanawha County, Cabin Creek, Hughes Creek, enumeration district: 79, sheet 7B; line 65-70, household 38, G. W. Roop (accessed 5 November 2010). 
  33. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 1953605, image 484, Certificate of Death, State File No. 465, Gordon W. Roop, 30 January 1930, citing Kanawha City, Kanawha County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/1953605/0000484.gif: accessed 2 February 2022). 
  34. Ibid., West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 1984026, image 2907, West Virginia Certificate of Death, State File No. 8882, Nancy Elizabeth Roupe, 14 June 1949, Charleston, Kanawha County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/1984026/0002907.gif : accessed 7 March 2022). 
  35. The Charleston Gazette, Charleston, West Virginia, Newspaperarchive.com, database created from microfilm copies of the newspaper; searchable text version and newspaper images, copyright 2006 Heritage Microfilm, Inc., Wednesday, 15 June 1949, page ?, column ?, Roupe, Nancy Elizabeth (death notice). (https://newspaperarchive.com/ : accessed before 24 March 2014).