Tag Archives: Henrico county

Peter Nance and Mary Pryor Query from 1906

It’s interesting to look at the old genealogy columns published in newspapers at the turn of the century. I thought this one was a great example of lots of names but not documentation. It was published on July 15, 1906 in The Times Dispatch, Richmond, VA.

I’m curious. What records were available to researchers 110 years ago? I suspect all research was done in the county record office or a researcher was hired to do it for you. In this newspaper column the reference to Edward and Nicholas Pryor in Henrico county sites the years and not the reference material. From what we know today, it’s likely they were citing the dates of Vestry Records.

And of course Roger A Pryor was still alive in 1906 and his involvement in US and Virginia politics, service as a Confederate General during the Civil War and appointments as a New York Judge were all well known and documented in newspapers.

I think there’s an interesting aspect to the query. In 1906 the writer was aware of who their ancestors were. Peter Nance was recorded with his wife Mary Pryor on the 1850 Census in Knox County. By 1860, when he was 86 years old, Peter Nance was living in Blount County, TN. So somewhere in the 40 or less years since his death, where in VA they originated from and who were their parents has disappeared from the family story.

This news clipping should be a reminder of why research continues and supporting documentation is needed for our findings. The writer never made a connection between the Pryors mentioned– they simply were dishing out names.

Oh, Susannah Pryor! 1777 Henrico County

Over the past couple months I’ve delved into some of the Susannah Pryors who were noted around the time of the American Revolution. It was quite the popular name.

I stumbled upon a signature on a 1777 Henrico County, VA Legislative Petition. It looks a lot like someone trying to write Susannah Pryor with it perhaps coming out looking like Susaner Pyrer.

The petition was filed to protest against running the dividing line between Henrico & Hanover Counties through the Chickahominy Swamp. Well, that’s an interesting location. Nicholas Pryor had land on the Chickahominy in Henrico County (see post). When Nicholas died in 1746 Susannah Pryor came into court to request the right to administer his estate. Could this signature be her signature?

The Chickahominy comes up again — on a 1751 deed filed in Henrico County mentions William Pryor of Albemarle County (see post). The deed also states the land in Henrico county was from William Laffoon’s patent and it was located on the Chickahominy river.

VA & NC Pryors: Making Connections on Beaver Dam Creek in Goochland County

constant-perkins-beaver-dam

I know Beaver Dam Creek does sound as posh as maybe- let’s say Polo Pony Drive– but this may have been the place to be in Henrico County, later Goochland County.  The above list of deeds is from http://www.directlinesoftware.com/Pool/goochlan.txt. Remember the Perkins who shadowed the Pryors from Pittsylvania County, VA into Rockingham and other Counties in NC, and then into Hawkins/Greene County, TN and finally into Williamson County?  It looks like they may have been  neighbors (and probably kin) back into the 1720’s, long before the Revolutionary War. There was John Pryor on Beaver Dam Creek (see my post) and it looks like Constantine Perkins was right there too.

Another neighbor to look at is John Pleasant. Do you see him above? Isn’t it interesting that when the Pryors moved into NC there’s a John Pleasant Pryor among them? He also ended up in Tennessee with the migration to middle TN in the 1790’s.

Digging Deep for Campbell County, VA Pryor Roots – The Pattersons!

Campbell County Pryor FamiliesHow could I have missed this? I’m going to blame the handwriting!

I picked up that Harris Pryor born about 1740 was a witness on the will of John Wright, the husband of Ann. Ann was the daughter of John Pryor and Mary New of Henrico County, VA. I missed another witness: Landis Pattison (or Patterson). I think I’ve passed over Landis several times when I’ve looked at census records because it looked like Candis (a common variation of Candice). However, I was excited to spot Landis Pattison on the 1820 Census in Campbell County, VA!

And I love where Landis Pattison/Patterson is on the census. He’s wedged in nicely on the two pages that contain my own line of Taylors (they married into my Pryor line), suspected Taylor kin, grandchildren of John Pryor and Mary New. If Harris Pryor and John Pryor & Mary New aren’t part of the Pryor line I’m tracing — I’m not making any bets, just saying I’ll be stunned.

1820 Census Extracts, Campbell County, VA

page 138, John Garrett, 010101
page 138, line 28 Landis Pattison 0000001
(Landis Pattison witnessed will of John Wright, son in law of John Pryor and Mary New, in Prince Edward County, VA in 1775, with Harris Pryor also a witness. Landis Pattison’s mother was Elizabeth New.)
page 138, line 32 Archibald Bolling Sr.
(Archibald Bolling married 4 times – Sarah Cary, Jane Randolph, Sarah (Woodson) Clarke, and Mary Taylor (Page) Bird)
page 138, line 33 David Pattison
page 138, line 34 Littleberry Pattison
(brother of Landis Pattison)
page 138, line 39 Jacob Woodson
page 138, line 40 David Alvis
page 139, line 42 Charles Wright, 120001201
(witnessed Edmund Taylor’s Will)
page 139, line 43 Anderson Woodson Sr.
(Oldest male over 45 y.o, 11 whites, 28 slaves. Son of Robert L Woodson and Rebecca Pryor, a grandson of John Pryor and Mary New.)
page 140, line 2 Isaac Crews
(Isaac married Mary/Polly Oglesby the widow of Hezekiah Taylor who was killed in the War of 1812 in Canada. It’s believed that Mary was the sister-in-law of Edward Taylor on the same page of the 1820 Census)
page 140, line 32 Edward Taylor
(Oldest male over 45 y.o, 7 whites, 4 slaves. Edward/Edmund Taylor father of Spicy Taylor who married William Pryor & Massa Taylor who married John Pryor. Edmund Taylor was married to Elizabeth Garrett)
page 140, line 33 Hezekiah Taylor
(oldest male over 16 to 25 yo, 5 whites, no slaves. Son of Edward/Edmund & Elizabeth Garrett Taylor)
 

The Pattersons or Pattisons were all over the same counties where I’m searching out John Pryor, David Pryor, Harris Pryor (Campbell, Amherst, Bedford, Pittsylvania). I see Landis’ brother Littleberry Patterson was recorded on the tax list for Pittsylvania County. Littleberry is on the tax list with… David Ross (the iron foundry guy– he pops up so many times I’m making him his own TAG link!).  There’s an extensive foot note that discusses Ross’ holdings in Pittsylvania County in The History of Pittsylvania County, Virginia  By Maud Carter Clement.

Pattersons have several connections to David Pryor and Susannah Ballow in Buckingham County — After David died his heirs sold part of the estate in 1813 to David Patteson.  David’s son Zane Pryor is supposed to have married a Miss Patterson.

So, you know that habit people had of naming their children after kin. I had to turn over that rock… I looked to see if there were any men named Patterson. Sometimes you turn over a rock and you find something. .

I found another interesting name: Patterson Childress (Patterson Childers). I know there are Pryors who are hunting Childress because of the David Pryor from Henrico County who married a daughter of Abraham Childress. Patterson Childress served with the VA line out of Buckingham County during the Revolutionary War per his wife’s application for a widow’s pension in 1831 (see the transcript). This Childress served under Capt. Leonard Balew, spelled a hundred different ways but the same surname as Susannah Ballow also of Buckingham County, VA who married David Pryor (grandson of Abraham Childress).

And where was widow Childress in 1844? She says she was living in Jefferson County, TN. I found her daughter Nancy (Childress) Hamilton in a well documented family tree on Ancestry (see the tree), which shows she was in Sevier County, TN in 1850 and 1860. Patterson Childress is on the 1784-1787 Census for Surry Co., NC with some names that deserved a review… they sound like they’re from VA. I even spotted an Edward Taylor and Richard Taylor which will need to be searched. Patterson’s military file on Ancestry.com contains a letter that says he had a son named Abraham Childress.

I smell a connection! My research list is getting rather long and I have a stash of 40 posts I’ve written that I can’t get published because I keep digging out this newer stuff.

Patience…

 

John Pryor in Campbell, Bedford, Appomattox, and Albemarle

ross-pryor-mapI have been revisiting my own Pryor line (John Pryor of Sumner Co., TN and William Pryor of Overton Co., TN). I can speculate on relationships all I want, but I’m still looking for the meat and potatoes, the paper proof of who is related whom.

DNA NOTE: We have one Y DNA test on this line– working on interpreting the results. If you’re a Pryor male from either of these lines. I’m interested in working with you on Y-DNA testing. Identities are kept confidential.

I found a nifty source called cLocations.com. You can look up waterways and it will pinpoint them on a map. That’s awesome! Because they didn’t have piped in city water in the 1700’s so waterways were important for people and their livestock AND without GPS, waterways were markers on deeds as to where property was located.

We have a deed for John Pryor (likely the father of John and William and the grandfather of Allen L. Pryor of Sumner County, TN, b. 1816):

On 25 November 1788, John Pryer of Campbell County purchases “from John Kitchen of Henry County . . . for 75 [pounds], one certain tract of land of 135 acres in C[ampbell] on the west branches of Stonewall Cr, 7 bounded by Stoval, Kitchen’s corner on Cattail Branch, McBride. Signed – John Kitchen. Wit – Thomas Dunn, William Page, William Bernett (B (Burnett), Henry Truman, William Chenalt (Chenault), Charles Rork. Recorded Apr 2, 1789.” (Campbell County Virginia Deeds, 1784 – 1790 published by T.L.C. Genealogy (Miami), p. 55, referencing deed book page 360)

The pink star on the above map shows where Stonewall Creek is located in what is today’s Appomattox County. While the original deed was in Campbell County, it’s consistent with the history of the Taylors (John’s sons both married Taylor women) that they lived in the part of Campbell County that was sacrificed for the formation of Appomattox County.

I know Tennessee researchers bemoan all the county divisions– Virginia is just as frustrating.  I found a sensible explanation of the county divisions in Campbell Chronicles by Ruth Hairston Early (pub. 1927).

“In 1754 the part of Albemarle lying upon the south side of the river, from the mouth of Stonewall Creek to the head of Falling river, was added to Bedford: then Albemarle was divided in 1761 to form Amherst; the portion north of the James was marked by a line up the Rockfish River to the mouth of Green creek, thence to the Blue Mountains; east of this line remained Albemarle…”,

Ms. Early also added that the James River was also known as the Fluvanna, derived from fluvius (water) and Queen Anne of England. So the Pryors in Appomattox can be in Campbell County records (we already knew that), and also in Bedford and Almemarle records.  Whew!

We’ve probably got John Pryor in a Bedford record

John Pryer with Gideon Martin, Jane Preston, Thomas Stovall witnessed the will of Jacob Rector in Bedford County VA on 26 Oct. 1779. John Pryer along with Gideon Martin proved the will by oaths on 22 Nov. 1779. John Pryer along with David Martin and Thomas Stovall inventoried the estate of Jacob Rector on 3 Dec. 1779, returned 22 January 1781. “Prier” also used at one place in the record. (Abstracts of Bedford County Virginia Wills, Inventories and Accounts by Joida Whitten, Taylor Publishing Company (Dallas), pp. 101 and 113, referencing will book pp. 359-60 and 387.)

I suspect that the Pryor on Stonewall Creek and the Pryor who witnessed Jacob Rector’s will and inventoried the estate is the same John Pryor who was in Campbell County (late area in Appomattox County). Pryor’s 1788 deed states his land was near Stovall’s and 1779 a Thomas Stovall witnessed the will with Pryor.  There’s a remnant of the Pryors in Appomattox County on the 1850 census– Pryor Wright and Pryor D. Martin. I suspect Pryor D. Martin is related to the David Martin who inventoried Rector’s estate with John Pryor.

Now, there’s another line of Pryors we have to consider connecting with the John Pryor in Albemarle. Yes, it’s likely he’s the brother of David Pryor in Buckingham County since there was a David and John mentioned in the Henrico County courts and Cumberland County deeds as heirs of a deceased David Pryor. I suspect they are also kin to Harris Pryor of Bedford County. When Harris’ family left VA for TN they lived near Rectors in Anderson County and Roane County.

So, we have John Pryor pinned down from 1779 when he witnessed a will to 1788 when he bought property in Campbell County (now Appomattox). County divisions tell us to look for earlier records of John Pryor in Bedford and Albemarle Counties. Yes, there is a John Pryor who in 1759 was on the south side of the Fluvanna (remember that’s the James River!) in Albemarle County near Abraham Childers/Childress. John Pryor’s property in 1788 is also on the south side of the river.

That leaves us with a pretty big gap in the time on the paper records for John Pryor — 1759-1788. Where was he and what was he doing?

Is there a David Ross connection? I was thinking of the old John Pryor b. 1757 who was in Sullivan Co., TN next to the entrepreneur David Ross (read part 4 of Ross Posts). I know that my John Pryor was probably deceased by 1812 and the one in Sullivan County lived past the 1850 Census, so they are not the same man. However there’s an interesting little fact to share: Oxford Iron Works, the foundry Ross ran during the Revolutionary War; it was located on Beaver Creek in Campbell County, VA. The red “pin” on the above map shows that it was just 12 miles from where John Pryor lived on Stonewall Creek.