I’m sharing 3 samples of Pryors from Botetourt County, VA: Joseph Pryor, Thornton Pryor, and John Pryor.
The signature above for Joseph Pryor is from a petition of “sundry inhabitants” of the county of Botetourt… requesting obstructions to navigation of James River at the Blue Ridge to be removed (dated about 1788). I think this is the signature of Joseph Pryor Sr as it doesn’t look like the samples we have of Joseph Jr.(see post).
And another signature of Joseph Pryor Sr. from a 1790 petition.
And another signature a bit later… Joseph Pryor on a 1806 petition in Botetourt County. It’s wild how one person’s signature can vary (Perhaps it style depended upon the type of quill pen and the texture of the paper). His “p” and “h” looks about the same, but the “s” had a different flourish in 1806.
Joseph Pryor, 1806 Petition from Botetourt County
Thornton Pryor: A petition signature from 1801. Compare his signature with the 1829 sample from a previous post… it looks a bit different but I think the curly-cue on the “T” shows up in the “P” in the later signature. The “h” has a similar tilt and shape. The final “r” in Pryor looks more like an “n” in both signatures.
1801: Botetourt County Petition
1829: Thornton Pryor Signature on KY Marriage Bond
There was also a John Pryor signature on an 1802 Petition in Botetourt County. I think this is the signature of John, son of Joseph Pryor as it’s very similar to the writing of John Pryor who signed the 1829 KY marriage bond with Thornton Pryor. The way the “o” joins the “h” and the top of the “h” isn’t a loop but a “up and down” slash — the same on both samples.
1802: John Pryor on Botetourt County Petition
1829: John Pryor on KY Marriage Bond
I heard from another researcher in answer to the last post. Thank you to Beverly Watson from the My Jackson Purchase Families website. She has an 1815 Bond from Bourbon County, KY signed by Joseph Pryor and John Pryor. These men were seeking a bond to open a tavern. It looks like their signatures are a very good match to the signatures on the 1829 marriage bond for Juliet Pryor in Owen County, KY.
I think the strongest part of the match are the “P” in both Pryor signatures. It’s also a good match on the tilt of the “h” in Joseph and the loop shape and direction in the “y” in John Pryor.
Since Joseph Pryor Sr. was deceased by about 1813, the signature is most likely Joseph Pryor Jr. on both documents.
Another observation is the time span between documents… 14 years. John Pryor’s projected year of birth from most researchers is about 1773. He was 77 at the time of the 1850 Census. It’s interesting that his signature was consistent.
There are 3 Pryor signatures on a bond signed in Owen County, KY. Signatures on the marriage bond of Juliet Prior (sic) are dated 30 March 1829. It’s possible that the Joseph, John and Thornton who signed the bond were brothers, sons of Joseph Pryor Sr. Joseph Pryor Sr. died in about 1813 (his will was probated in February 1813) — making it unlikely that he was the Joseph who signed the bond.
Is this the same Joseph Pryor who signed as a witness on the estate of Thomas Lang in 1804 in Botetourt County? I created a graphic to do a side by side comparison. The signature on the left is from 1829 and the one on the right is from 1804.
Even if we aren’t handwriting experts we can look at these signatures and make some comparisons.
- The “J” on the left has a bottom loop that tilts upward and more left. Its tail intersects with itself. The “J” in left sample ends with a tail that flows to the right, connecting with the “o”.
- The “o” in Joseph differs between signatures. On the left, it’s open at the top and connects with the next letter. The right “o” is made from the tail of the “J” and doesn’t connect.
- The left “s” is in cursive. The right “s” is in printed font.
- The “p” in Joseph is also different in both scripts. On the left it has a tail with a loop at the bottom and on the right there is no loop.
- On the left the “h” connects to the “p” and on the right the “h” stands alone.
- Both “r”s in Pryor are made the same on the left as well as on the right, however they differ in structure in both signatures.
- The capital “P” in each signature differ wildly as does the “y”
My rudimentary conclusion is that the signatures were not made by the same person. Perhaps they were written by Joseph Sr. and Joseph Jr. of even someone else.
I spotted politician Pryor Lea from Knox County in a document with his name spelled “Lee”. Just passing along that his name can be spelled different ways. I usually hear from researchers who ask if politician Pryor Lea was a Pryor or wasn’t he a Pryor? I think I’ve spotted a Pryor family who share names with his family.
|Pryor Lea born 1794 in TN
Parents possibly Major Lea and Lavinia Jarnigan
m1 Maria Kennedy on October 6, 1818.
Children, Abraham, Julia, Centhia, and James Kennedy m2 Minerva Heard m3 Mary Perkins.
|William Pryor born c. 1800
m Lavinia Kennedy born c. 1805 in PA
Children: James, Isaac, William M, Samuel L, Catherine Elizabeth. Son James named son Abraham Pryor
A year ago I wrote about the Botetourt, VA Pryor names who showed up in Knox County (see post). Keeping this research note on the back burner for later.