Tag Archives: Louisanna

Who was Richard Pryor in Catahoula Parish Feud?


Nothing about the Liddell-Jones feud ended well (see post). After Charles Jones killed St. John R Liddell on the river boat Welcome, mob justice was unleashed on Jones– the mob killed Charles Jones, his son William Jones, and possibly his son Cuthbert Jones. The Ouachita Telegraph describes this a “tragedy”, however I suspect in our time we’d call this a lynching.

Who was the Richard Pryor involved in the feud? What was his fate? I think the Richard who became involved in the Catahoula Parish feud was the son of William Bland Pryor (born 1793 in VA). This is the Richard Pryor who brashly demanded the head of Abraham Lincoln at the start of the Civil War (see post). The feud was fought near Trinity, LA (#1 on the map below). In 1850 Richard was living with his parents in Madison Parish, LA (#2) and was counted in 1860 in nearby Vicksburg, MS (#3).

Pryors in Wilkes County, GA and Catahoula County, LA


It looks like there may be able to put together some descendants of Edward Pryor who was an early settler of Wilkes county. His son John, a Revolutionary War patriot was in Pike and Jasper Counties in GA. Get ready for some heavy digging!

There are several names who appear the same District where Edward Pryor and his sons John Pryor and Obadiah Pryor lived who show up again later near other Pryors.

1791 Census, Clay Dist. Wilkes Co., GA

Henry Haynes
Parmenas Haynes
Thomas Haynes
Edward Prier
John Prier
Obadiah Prier
Howell Tatum
Peter Tatum
Archibald Whatley
Lucy Whatley
Wharten Whatley
Jeremiah Wooten

Richard and Mourning Pryor: A Georgia Connection, a Tatum, and Edward Pryor

Bio of Peter Tatum (not a secure link files.usgwarchives.net/al/autauga/bios/ptatum.txt

Several of the surnames from Wilkes County, GA are grouped near each other in LA almost half a century later

1850 Census, Catahoula Co., LA

Page 52b, house 61 John Wooton 35 planter KY and family
Page 52b, house 62 Agrippe Hanes 35 planter MS and family
Page 52b, house 63 Richard G. Wooten 50 planter GA
Page 52b, house 64 John P. Hanes 74 planter VA and wife Martha Hanes 64 FL
Page 52b, house 67 Peter Hanes 29 planter LA and family
Page 53a house 74 Morgan Coats 48 planter SC and family
Page 53B, house 79/79 William PRYOR 39 planter $2500 GA, Margaret (Coats) 28 SC, William Jr. 14 MS, Marion 11 MS, Susan 8 LA, Rebecca 4 LA, Martha 6 LA.
Page 59b, house 171 Archibald Whatley 49 planter GA, Julia Ann 46 GA, Wooten W 24 LA, Nancy J 18 LA, Mary 16 LA, Jesse 14 LA, John 11 LA, Adaline 9 LA, Archibald Jr. 5 LA, Josephine 2 LA, William Simmons 28 no occupation LA (This Archibald is younger than the Archibald Whatley in Wilkes Co.)

John Pryor and Brother Charles Pryor of New Orleans (about 1844)


Marriage Affidavit of Bridget Fox and John Pryor in New Orleans (click to enlarge)

I came across the 1844 probate file for John Pryor of New Orleans on FamilySearch.org. Philip Canterbury assisted Bridget Fox Pryor (sometimes spelled in documents “Prior”) in filing a petition in the Probate court. There’s a note at the bottom of the petition: “as brother of the deceased I have no objection to the above prayer (signed) Charles Pryor.”

The marriage document was signed by the rector of St. Antony’s Chapel, documenting that John Pryor and Bridget Fox married on 4th October 1843.  Anne Bryne, a  mid-wife, attested that she delivered a son to Bridget Fox Pryor on the 23rd or 24th of August 1844. The baby was large and Bridget had a long labor, and the baby died soon after birth. Another document from Father Flanagan at St. Patrick’s church stated their record was that the baby was buried on 25th of August 1844 in the church cemetery.

The estate wasn’t settled until 24 February 1848 when it was concluded by judgment.

On the 1850 Census Bridget Prior was still in New Orleans and counted in the household of Philip Canterbury:

Dist. 3, page 242b, house 1751 Philip Canterbury 52 soda manufacturing MA, Bridget Prior 34 Ireland

So were John PRYOR and Charles PRYOR from Ireland?

A Pryor Who Put A Hit Out On The President

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lincon-wikipediaSometimes I cringe at the antics of our Pryor ancestors. Impassioned by the start of the Civil War in April 1861, Richard Pryor in Mississippi put  a price on Lincoln’s head (see ad). I’d like to know if that was $10,000 US cash or Confederate funny-money. If that was in US dollars that was quite a sum 150 years ago!

Vicksburg, April 20th, 1861.
100,000 REWARD!
I WILL give the above reward for the head of ABRAHAM LINCOLN. If taken a live, or 50,000 if taken dead and delivered to me at Vicksburg , in time for me to hand it over to President Davis, by the 4th of July, next. All the papers please copy.
(Vicksburg Evening Citizen)

Who was this Richard Pryor? Probably this was the Richard S. Pryor, son of William B Pryor, who lived in Madison County. LA (1850) and in Warren County, MS (1860). Vicksburg is in Warren County.

Enjoy your 4th of July!

American Flag

A Thomas Jefferson Letter Leads to Questions in the Pryor Family Tree

letter 1
It’s sad that letter writing has become a lost art. Two Hundred years from now will historians be searching the web for our Tweets and posts to figure out our history….our lineage?

Here’s a little letter from Randolph Jefferson (the president’s brother) asking for a ride to Charlottesville so his wife Mitchie B. Pryor could see her dying brother. That was in 1809.

That’s a sweet story in itself, but I have questions.


I get concerned when I read things like this. Is there a Pryor who’s missing? Which brother was on his death bed? My notes reflect that of Mitchie’s known brothers all were alive into the 1830’s and beyond:

Langston d. 1849
William Smith d. 1840
Leonard d. 1830-ish
Zane d. 1854
Nicholas d. 1833
John C. d. after 1850
Banister S. d. after 1840
Zachariah B. d. 1837

If I had to pick another son for David Pryor, I’d pick Benjamin W. Pryor b. 1788 in VA. Benjamin was in Nashville as early as 1807. He went to Louisiana as did John C. Pryor. There’s a Benjamin Pryor on the 1830 Census in Iberville, LA and in Nashville. But alas, Benjamin lived to a ripe old age, dying after the 1850 Census.

So are we missing a son of David Pryor and his wife Susan Ballow? Or was the man in the letter one of the known sons and he just got better and lived on another 20 years or so?