Pryors on the Tennessee Tax Lists

TaxesApril 15th has passed and now we can look at taxes for fun (hopefully). The Tennessee Tax Lists are up on Ancestry.com and I’ve had some fun going through them. There are a couple of connections that I’d like to share – just in case they will help out another Pryor researcher.

First I found on the 1794 Sumner County Tax List William Pryor. I’ve had several researchers tell me that this William was a son of Richard Pryor and Mourning Thompson. I looked at his neighbors on the list and found Elijah Ewing and Benjamin Downs are close by. In the early 1800’s Benjamin Downs is on several records in Stewart County with the William Pryor who later migrated to Austin’s Colony in Texas. So is William in Sumner County the same man?

I love these kind of questions because it’s like a domino effect… ask one question and how we look at other data comes into question.  Was he the same William who was surety for the Sumner Co. marriages of Mary Pryor to John Hannah, and Jenny Pryor to George Fairly (or Farely). Was he the William Pryor who in 1796 signed a bond for Richard Pryor for 200 pounds VA money for a tract of 2565 acres on the Cainey Fork of the Cumberland? Wouldn’t it make more sense in that kind of transaction that William might be Richard’s brother and not his son?

I mentioned Elijah Ewing. He is on the 1805 Tax List for Blount County—on the same page as a Thomas Pryor.  Let’s throw another name into the mix for Blount County — There’s a Joseph Pryor in that county on the 1805 Census.  I suspect that he was the same Joseph Pryor who was on the 1803 Tax List for Jackson County because both men were recorded near John Whitson.  The Whitsons were connected to the Pryors of White County. Researchers report Jeremiah Whitson married Susannah Pryor in about 1804, and Elizabeth Pryor married James Whitson.

It’s been speculated that Thomas is Thompson Pryor, who was a son of Richard and Mourning Pryor, and that Joseph, Susannah, and Elizabeth are additional children of Richard and Mourning Pryor.

Puzzle solvers welcome!