Tag Archives: matthew pryor

Sarah Pryor Parker of Person County and Orange County, NC

The estate of Jonathan Parker of Person County, NC is a wealth of information to tie together the relationships of the the Pryors. He died in 1777, but his estate settlement went on and on and on. In 1803 depositions were noticed for Susannah Pryor, wife of Continue reading

All Roads Lead to Roane: Meet The Virginia People in Roane County and Anderson County, TN

pryor-east-tennesseeIn the very early 1800’s Virginia Pryor families and their neighbors headed to an area between Roane County and Anderson County, TN.  A Google book titled “The Land and Laws of Tennessee: Being A Compilation of The Various Statutes of… (It’s a very long title, but you can view the book online) discusses the division of Anderson and Roane counties near the farms of D. L. Bradley, John R. Galbreath, Samuel Tunnell, William Rite, W. C. Griffith, and J. C. Roberts.

These names may ring a bell from my last posts. The slave Sy Prior was living with Drury L. Bradley in 1850 and Samuel Tunnel was a witness to his 1860 will.  William C. Griffith witnessed Frances Prior‘s will (Harris’ mother) and he witnessed the will of Benjamin Lockett (Frances Prior’s son in law) with William Right/Rite.

I have several connected people who traveled from the Bedford County, VA area that became Campbell County to this area where some records are in Roane County while others are in Anderson County.

Jesse Pryor

Jesse Pryor is on the 1805 Tax list in Anderson Co., TN. He’s named on a 1811 deed with Reuben Williams and John Rector. My theory is that this is the Jesse Pryor born to Harris Pryor and Mary Kinnerson who was in Knox County and then later showed up on Census records in Overton County, TN. Harris, was on Bedford County, VA records.

William Pryor

My working theory is that William Pryor is another child of Harris and Mary. He may have been going back and forth between TN and VA — I may have to write a post about the clues that these Pryors were going back and forth. Like Jesse he was in Bedford County, Knox County, and Roane County. He is on an 1811 deed with Reuben Williams and John Rector that points to him being in the same part of the county at the same time as Jesse Pryor.

Samuel Pryor

Married to Frances Ferguson, Samuel died around 1815. Record of his estate was filed in Anderson County. Frances’ ID was in a VA Chancery Court case for her brother Robert Ferguson filed in Cumberland County, VA, naming Frances and her children. Frances and her son Harris lived in Roane County. John Rector was counted on census records living near Frances and Harris.

Benjamin Lockett

Married to Ailsy Pryor, daughter of Samuel and Frances. His will was filed in Anderson County in 1834, included a note from Richard Oliver and witnessed by Reuben Williams (see Jesse and William above) and William C. Griffith.

Joseph Grammer

Joseph Grammer was a French national who fought in the American Revolution. In 1787 he was brought up on charges of living with a woman without marriage in Charlotte County. Her name? Elizabeth Pryor or Mary Pryor or Mary Elizabeth Pryor. His Revolutionary War pension application states they were in Bedford County, VA by 1799. They were in Roane County by 1830. Joseph was about 100 years old when counted on the 1850 Census, still living with his wife. Could this Elizabeth Pryor be the grand-daughter of William Boteler/Butler? (see post) Nope. Her age would make her of about the same generation as Butler.

William Boteler Jr. & Sr.

The younger William Boteler married Sarah Cunningham in Campbell Co., VA, possibly a daughter of Murell Cunningham. Murrell Cunningham was surety for the marriage. John Pryor, Charles Rork, Martin Rector on March 15, 1790 Bill of Sale for Murrell Cunningham of Campbell County. Murrell Cunningham also went to TN– he was in Sumner Co., TN from 1800 to at least 1820. William Boteler Sr. mentioned grand-daughter Elizabeth Pryor in his will.

John Kitchen

John Kitchen sold land in Campbell Co., VA to John Pryor in 1788.  He was on the 1830 Census in Anderson County. He applied for a Revolutionary War Pension. The application states he was born in Bedford County, VA and his wife was Mary Whitten.

One last Pryor to mention because he was in Roane, but doesn’t seem to fit with the others.

Matthew Pryor Sr.

Matthew Pryor filed for a Revolutionary War Pension which documents where he was at the time of the war and thereafter: Born in Granville County, NC in 1759 > Caswell County, NC >Richmond County, GA > back to Granville County, NC > Washington County, VA > Roane County, TN > Marion County, TN. He was in Roane County in about 1808 when his son Matthew Pryor Jr. married Henrietta Williams. There’s no indication that he was in Campbell or Bedford Counties not have I found anything to show these other folks were in North Carolina.

Matthew Pryor of Marion County, TN One Line From a Looney

I mentioned Peter Looney from Botetourt County in a post earlier this week (see post). Now for something to chew on this weekend. There’s a man named Peter Looney counted one line from Matthew Pryor on the 1830 Census in Marion County, TN.


Matthew Pryor of Marion Co., TN

I’ve been contacted by many researchers through the years who want to know the parents of Matthew Pryor of Marion Co., TN. I know I’ve frustrated some folks when I dispute that Matthew was the son of Green Pryor. I think people assumed that since his son was named Green Hill Pryor that he must have been after his grandfather.

Recently Jean Hughes book1 on the Pryors was brought to my attention by another researcher. It’s very well documented and her conclusions rely heavily on impeccably sourced records:

“Matthew Pryor (b. 3/15/1759 in Granville County, d. 1834 in Marion County, Tennessee) married Mary Neely in 1786. In the 1784 tax list for Caswell County, Haden is shown in the Nash District with 200 acres, a mill, and a household of 1 white and 2 blacks. Anne Pryor and Matthew Pryor are in the St. James District. Anne Pryor had 400 acres on the Flat River a household of 0 whites and 2 blacks. Matthew had 200 acres on the Flat River in a household of 1 whites and 0 blacks. Further Matthew Pryor was granted other deeds in Granville County: (1) on November 8, 1790 he purchased land belonging to Edmund Carnes and (2) in 1787 he purchased 212 acres from Micajah Bullock.586 In Elizabeth Pryor Harper’s Twenty-One Southern Families, Matthew is mentioned as a grandson of Robert Pryor. John Pryor, Philip’s brother, did not have a son named Matthew. The chain carriers for the March 3, 1779, deed of Ann Pryor for 400 acres on the Flat River in Caswell County were Matthew and Philip Pryor. From these facts, it appears that Matthew Pryor was Philip’s son. Furthermore, the witnesses to Matthew’s November 8, 1790, deed were Micajah Bullock and Philip Pryor.”

Ms. Hughes developed a chart (page 181) from her research that lists the children of Philip Pryor and Anne Haden as Haden, Tabitha, Frances, Philip, Sally, John, Matthew, William, Samuel and Susannah.

The naming traditions within Matthew’s family also indicate a connection to the Haden family. His son John H. Pryor (b. 1791) named a son Haden (b. 1820) and Matthew’s son William b. 1788 named a son Hayden (b. 1808). If Philip is indeed Matthew’s father, it makes sense that he named a son Philip2.

Recent DNA testing indicated that an heir of Matthew Pryor matches on 24 of 25 markers with the line of Pryors from Philip and Anne. Some Pryors known to be from the line of Philip and Anne, matched on 23 or 25 markers.

The research done by Jean Hughes and recent genetic testing leads me to believe that we now have the correct parents of Matthew Pryor.

1. Robert Prior (Pryor) and Related Families by Jean Pryor Hughes, pub. 2003, p. 174
2. Philip Pryor born 1791 in Granville, NC. He was recorded on the 1830 Census in Marion Co. and recorded in 1840 and 1850 in McNairy Co.