Category Archives: Virginia Pryors

Nat Pryor b. 1826, An African American from VA

The following information about Nat Pryor was previously published as a web page.

African American Pryor Line from Virginia living in Bastrop, Lee, and Fayette Co., TX. The patriarch of this Pryor line was Nat Pryor born about 1826 in Virginia. He and his family are on the 1870 Census in Fayette Co., TX. Nat, his wife, and 7 of his 8 children (two of his daughters were married and living nearby in 1870) were born in Virginia. His eighth child, Susan Pryor, was born in Texas in 1861. Texas was a slave state, so there’s the possibility that this family came to Texas in 1861 with a slave owner. In 1880 there is an African American man named Wyatt Rucker born in VA. He was living with Nat’s son, Thomas Pryor. Could Wyatt Rucker be a clue to the Virginia origins of this Pryor line? There’s a younger Wyatt Rucker in Campbell Co., VA. He was also an African American. There were connections between the white Pryor and Rucker families of Amherst Co., VA: Daughters of Peter Rucker (Mary and Edith) married sons of Col. John Pryor, a son of Nicholas Pryor.

For more information on slavery in Texas, visit the Online Handbook of Texas
tsha.utexas.edu/handbook/online/articles/SS/yps1.html

1880 Census, Lee Co., TX
Ch. C. B. Moor? white male 29 farmer VA VA VA
Clara A. white female 24 wife AL AL AL
Whyat (Wyatt?) Rucker black male 79 laborer on farm VA VA VA
Tom Prior black male 26 farmer VA VA VA
Seely Ann black female 24 wife TX VA unk.
Josephus black male 4 son TX VA TX
Bedford black male 2 son TX VA TX.

This family was counted twice
Tom Prior 25 black male farmer VA
Celian black female 22 wife keeping house TX
Ceephus black male 3 son TX
Bates black male 2 son TX

1870 Census Fayette Co., TX
West of Caldwell Road, page 503b.
Nat Prior 44 male black field hand VA
Phebe 48 female black house hand VA
Doctor 19 male black field hand VA
Thomas 14 male black at home VA
Shepherd 12 male black field hand VA
Armstead 13 male black field hand VA
Sandy 11 male black field hand VA
Susan 9 female black at school TX

1880 Census Fayette Co., TX
Phibbie Pryor 59 keeping house VA (widow of Nat Pryor)
Shep black male 23 son works on farm VA
Susan black female 18 daughter works on farm TX
Nellie Clark black female 15 gr-dau works on farm TX ?? VA
Lee Clar black male 9 gr-son works on farm TX ?? VA

A marriage for Sallie Pryor to Green Dedrick on 8 Feb 1870 in Fayette Co., TX. Sallie may be a sister to Thomas because Dedrick Green and family were living near the Pryors in 1870 and in 1880 on the census records.

1870 Census Fayette Co., TX
West of Caldwell Road, page 503b.
Green Dedrick 25 male black field hand TN
Sallie (Prior) 21 female black VA
Henry 15 male black TN
Dink 12 female black TN
John 4 male black TX
Lou 1/12 female black TX (born in July)

Another possible relative is Charlotte Prior born 1847 in VA. I found that she married Jim Hudson in Fayette Co., TX in 1870.

1870 Census, Bastrop Co., TX – page 543a
Jim Hodgson (sic) 24 male black farm hand TN
Charlotte 23 female black keeping house GA.

1880 Census, Bastrop Co., TX – page 186b
D. Oliver Hill white male 36 famer TX GA GA
Nannie Hill white female 32 wife TN KY TN
Sue B. white female 12 daughter TX TX TN
Walton Hill white male 10 son TX TX TN
T. Oliver Hill white male 5 son TX TX TN
Charlotte Hudson mulatto female 35 servant VA VA VA
Martha Prior black female 2 daughter TX Unk VA
Nat Prior black mu male 10/12 (born Sept.) TX unk VA
William Seay? white male 28 laborer SC VA GA

In 1910 she was 62 divorced and born in VA, as were her parents.

1920 Bastrop Co., TX
ED14, page 15b
Sealie? Williams head female black 30 single TX TX TX
Ernest Williams brother male black 29 TX TX TX
Chester? Williams nephew male black 9 single TX TX TX
Charlotte Pryor mother female black 73 widow TX TX TX

Free African American Pryors in King George County, VA

The following information on the free African American Pryors in King George County, VA was previously published as a web page.

100 years before the end of the Civil War and the end of slavery, there was a free black community in King George County, Virginia.

The earliest known free African American of the Pryor name was Alice. She was born about 1750 or earlier and was the mother of Leviny Prior whose birth was recorded in 1764. Leviny was the mother of Milly Prior born in about 1783 and whose birth was registered in King George County in September 1820. Andrew Pryor is described a s a black man of about twenty two years old and the son of a free black woman. His birth was recorded in January 1775. Winny Pryor was free born in about 1792 to Syllah Pryor, a “bright mulatto woman.” Her birth was also recorded in King George County in August 1820.

Several of the names recorded as free blacks in the birth records also appear as heads of household at the time of the 1820 Census.

1810 Census – All Free African Americans in King George County
(Head of Household Only)

Henry Bransican
William Bernard
Richard Brunbury
Daniel Wilson
John Taylor
Lucetta Smith
William Prestrage
Helen? Prestrage
Sarah Prestrage
James Punch
James Moore
Marry matthews
Tazey Kendall
Philip Lucas
David Lucas
George Ware
William Jett
William Ford
Caty Frazier
Clay Ford
August Dunlop
Lidia Dunlop
Townsend Dade
Thornton Dean
James Cunningham
Peggy Carroll
Philip Cunningham
Benjamin Cunningham
Mary McGee
Jenny Pryor
Lawrence Paney
Sally Ware
1820 Census – All Free African Americans in St. Paul’s Parish

Richard Bunbury
Lucinda Bunbury
John Evans
Lawrence Gordon
(born 1787, Gordon was living in Washington, DC in 1850)
Milly Grayson
Frances Hoose
David Lucas
George Lucas
Thomas Lucas
Anna Lucas
Jenny Lucas
Simon Mountjoy
Bernard Moore
William Payne
Fanny Phillips
Verlinda Pryor
(no males – 1001)
Winny Pryor
(1000 – 3010)
Milly Pryor
(2000 – 2300)
Nelly Pryor
(2000 – 0100)
George Rothrock
Robert Tibbo
Mingo Walker

1820 Census – All Free African Americans in Hanover Parish

Mingo Walker
Polly Astin
Grace Branham
Daniel Carmichael
James Cunningham
Benjamin Cunningham
Lucy Cunningham
John Dean
John Dunlop
Jenny Pryor
(01000 – 10000)
Dicy Dunlap
(born 1757, Dunlap was recorded as a midwife on the 1850 and 1860 Census in King George Co.)
Charity Evans
William Greenlaw
Spence Johnson
Ellzay Kendall
William Lawrence
Mancy Lawrence

1840 Census – African American Pryor Families in King George County
Nelly Prior (120000 – 1100)
James Prior (100100 – 201)
Milly Prior (no males – 00001)
Jane Prior (010000 – 02011)
Charles Prior (101000 – 11100)
Winny Prior (300100 – 1111)

1850 Census – African American Pryor Families in King George County
Page 227a, #336 Nelly PRIOR 48 black, VA, Catharine 18 black VA, William 27 black VA.
Page 227a, #367 James PRIOR 19 black, VA, Frances 25 black Washington
Page 201a, 856 Walker Hawes 43… living in household Elizabeth A. PRYOR 58 white VA.
Page 229a, #405 Caroline PRYOR 30 mu VA, John 8 mu VA
Page 222b, #297 James PRIOR 50 black, Peggy 24 black, Mary Frasier 4 black.
Page 223a, #302 Elizabeth PRIOR 22 black, Mildred 4 black, Thomas 1 black (Mildred and Thomas were living with Charles Prior in 1860).
Page 223a, #304 Mary PRIOR 29 mu “spinster”, Louisa 17 mu, Mary 12 mu, Nancy 10 mu, Sarah 8 mu, Mary 7 mu, Clay 5 mu, George 3 mu, Jane 14 black.
Page 210b, #84 Benjamin Redman 30 white merchant… living in household William PRIOR 36 black.
Page 235a, #514 Charles Evans 60 black, Susan 45 black, Ann 13 black, Charles 7 black, Peggy 5 black, Betsy PRIOR 21 black, Willie Ann 3 black, William 1 black.

1860 Census – African American Pryor Families in King George County
Page 371 Nelly PRIOR 51 mu, Catharine 32 mu, William Dunlop 32 mu
Page 371 Louisa Bunbery white… living in household Clay PRIOR 16 mu.
Page 421, #571 Sally PRIOR 45 mu, Robert 22 mu
Page 383, # 243 William Worrell… living in household William PRIOR 43 mu
Page 404, #427 James PRIOR 74 mu, Peggy 40 mu, Matthew Hamilton 25
Page ? Charles PRIOR 40 mu, Angeline 40 mu, Sarah 9 (married Madison Brooks), Martha 4, Caroline 3/12, Thomas 10, Mildred 13 (Thomas and Mildred are children of Elizabeth Prior – see 1850 Census), John 14

King George County Pryors on later Census Records

The only one of these Prior families I’ve been able to locate on later census records is Charles Prior and wife Angeline.

1870 Census 6th Ward Washington, DC

Page 256a, #1671 Chas. PRYOR 45 mu carpenter VA, Angeline 46 mu, Martha 14 mu, Caroline 10 mu, Eliz. 8 mu, Madison Brooks 27 mu coachman VA, Sarah 20 mu VA, ? PRYOR 28 male mu laborer.

1880 Census 7th St., Washington, DC

#27 Madison Brooks 36 mu coachman VA VA VA, Sarah A. (PRIOR) 29 dressmaker VA VA VA, Stevie 7 son DC VA VA, Mary J. 5 dau DC VA VA.

1880 Census East Capitol St., Washington DC
Charles R. PRIOR 55 mu, Labor Bureau employee VA VA VA
Angelina 54 wife mu VA VA VA
Martha E 23 dau mu teacher in public school VA VA VA
Carrie E. 20 dau mu teacher in public shcool VA VA VA
Ellsworth W. 18 son mu VA

1900 Census East Capitol St., Washington DC

Page 17a, #704 Charles R. PRYOR black Sept 1824 75 VA VA VA carpenter
Angeline M. wife, black Dec 1824 75 VA VA VA
Mary Brooks boarder Jun 1875 24 DC VA VA dressmaker
Charles M. boarder Jul 1892 19 DC VA VA at school
Lucy Lewis boarder Nov 1888 11 DC VA VA at school
(Mary Brooks was a grand-daughter of Charles and Angeline, daughter of Madison Brooks and Sarah Pryor).

1910 Census East Capitol St., Washington DC
#704 Charles R. PRYOR black Sept 1824 86 VA VA VA
Angeline M. wife 86 VA VA VA
Mary J. Tignor gr-dau 34 divorced DC VA VA
Madison Tignor gr-gr-son 8 DC DC DC
Lucy Lewis lodger 24 DC

1920 Census Washington DC – ED#235
Sheet 14b, #704 Angeline PRYOR 100 widow VA VA VA
Mary J. Tignor gr-dau 42 widow DC VA VA
Lucy Lewis roomer 32 DC VA VA teacher
Madison W. Tignor gr-son 18 DC VA VA

Will of Edmund Taylor: Fathter of Massey and Spicy Taylor Pryor

Will of Edmund Taylor, 1824 – Campbell Co., VA
(father in law of William Pryor of Overton Co., TN & John Pryor of Sumner Co., TN)
In the name of god, Amen. I Edward Taylor of the County of Campbell and State of Virginia, being sick and weak in body but of a sound mind and disposing memory for which I thank God and calling to mind the uncertainty of human life and being desirous to dispose of all such worldly estate as it hath pleased God to bless me with, I give and bequeath the same in the following that is to say in consideration of the love I bear towards my wife, Elizabeth, I give and bequeath unto her all my estate during her natural life after my just debts are paid, after that to be equally divided between all my children except Spicy and Massia, the wives of William and John PRYOR. I lend unto them their equal part during their natural life and after their death. I give it to their children in Testimony wereof (viz) I have herunto set my hand and seal this fifteenth day of July 1824. My wish is that Anderson Woodson Junr. to be my Executor.
Witnessed by Lefever Street, William B. Taylor, Charles Wright.
At a court held for Campbell Co., Nov 8, 1824, the within last will and testament of Edward Taylor, deceased, was produced in court proved by the oaths of Lefever Street and William B. Taylor witnesses, whose names are thereto subscribed and ordered to be recorded.
Teste. John Alexander CCC <Campbell County Clerk>

Note: Anderson Woodson md. Elizabeth Clarkson on 30/1/1818 in Campbell Co., VA. Anderson Woodson possibly the son of Robert Woodson and Rebecca PRYOR. Lefever Street appears on early tax lists in Sumner Co., TN.

Cincinnatus Pryor of Elizabeth City, VA

88Cincinnatus Pryor signature
It looks like there’s a new Pryor or Prior (it’s spelled both ways on documents) for the family tree. Ancestry.com has added records of applications to the Military Academy at West Point, NY. They include an 1825 application for a cadet named Cincinnatus Prior who is described as the son of General Prior of “the late war”. I think that would make him a son of Brazure Williams Pryor who fought in the War of 1812.

One glowing letter of recommendation in the file states Cincinnatus was a scholar at the Hampton Academy and was accomplished in English, Latin, Mathematics, Geometry (including Euclid’s Elements), trigonometry, and his courses included elementary chemistry and geography.

A letter of application signed by Cincinnatus Pryor states his age and place of birth which fits with Brazure’s marriage to Elizabeth Antoinette DeNeuville in 1807.

January 12, 1827. Addressed to the Secretary of War…  was born in the State of Virginia and now reside in the Borough of Norfolk and State of virginia. My age is Eighteen and my character and qualifications will appear from the recommendations of Wm Thos. Newton, Capt. E. P. Kenedy, Mr. John Tyler, Genl John Floyd, and certificates of my teacher Mr. Wm Ewing which were enclosed to you last year.
{signed}

Cincinnatus Pryor

Brazure Williams Pryor died in April 1827, so it’s possible that Cincinnatus didn’t make it to West Point. However if you do a search of Google books there’s a government publication that states he was dismissed from the Navy in about 1832. Wait a minute… Navy? I though he was applying to West Point!

C J D Pryor of James City, VA

Christopher J D Pryor signature (signed C J D Pryor) on an 1825 Legislative Protest against the memorial of the Staunton Convention and ask that no law be passed for taking the sense of the people on the propriety of calling a Convention to amend the State Constitution. Hmmm what was meant by “sense”? Was it a way of saying census? Is that another Pryor signature below?

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