Henry Willis, Carpenter of Maryland and Philadelphia (1829-1906) Part 1

Who the heck is Henry Willis who died in Philadelphia in 1906? And, is he part of the “Maryland Group” in the Willis DNA Project? Most of the Maryland Group descend from John Willis of Dorchester County, Maryland who was born about 1650-1670 probably in Berkshire County, England. (See https://www.familytreedna.com/groups/willis/about)

Spoiler alert — I am not sure about Henry, although I have an opinion. This post consists of two parts. Part 1 below sets out the facts, factoids, and gaps in the records that have frustrated the search for Henry. Part 2 will offer a theory identifying his parents based on circumstantial evidence.

Here goes …

Henry is the brick wall in the Willis line of Erin Daniels who descends from Henry’s daughter Lola. Erin has searched for years for Henry’s parents and for a male descendant of Henry’s son Harry. Her story about Henry, much of which is confirmed in the 1900 census for Philadelphia:[1]

    • He was born about 1829 in Maryland. Both his parents were born in Maryland.
    • In about 1880, he married Martha Anne (Annie) Stewart born about 1846. She and her parents were born in Delaware.
    • Family legend says the couple ran off from her home near Glasgow, New Castle County, Delaware to be married in Elkton, Cecil County, Maryland near the Delaware border.
    • Henry and Annie lived in Philadelphia in 1900. She had four children between 1880 and 1885, two of whom died in infancy.[2]
    • Henry was a carpenter.

Beyond the 1900 Census and the records relating to daughters who did not survive, there are only a few pieces of record evidence about this family:  a few entries in the City Directory of Philadelphia; a baptism of their youngest son; a death certificate for Henry; the 1910 census after Henry’s death; and the 1920 censuses after the death of Annie. Here is what we learn from those data …

Philadelphia City Directories                

Henry Willis, carpenter, appears in the 1901 and 1904 city directories of Philadelphia with his home address of 1335 South Hicks . However, he does not appear in 1873, 1881, 1894, 1897, or 1898.[3] It is reasonable to conclude that he did not take up residence in Philadelphia until shortly before the 1900 Census. This obviously raises the question, “Where the heck was he?”

 Harry Willis 1888 Baptism  

Henry and Annie may have almost lost a third child. On 17 October 1888, they arranged for the minister of Eleventh Street Methodist Episcopal Church to come to their home  and baptize their youngest child, Harry. The entry in the church record indicates the child was sick.[4] Often, a couple arranged for a home baptism if they feared their child was about to die. Thankfully, Harry lived to have children of his own.

Henry Willis 1906 Death Certificate

Carpenter Henry Willis died on 18 Sep 1906 and was buried at Hillside Cemetery in Philadelphia. His death certificate states he was born in Maryland and lived at 1335 So. Hicks Street. His death certificate does not name his parents or their place of birth. It states he died of kidney failure,[5]

1910 and 1920 Censuses

The widow Annie appears as Anna Willis in the 1910 census for Philadelphia as head of household with daughter Lola, son Harry, and five-year old granddaughter “Elsa.” [6] That census shows Lola working as a candy maker and Harry as a street car conductor. Both Lola and Harry are listed as single. Elsa apparently is Lola’s child. She appears with Lola Stevenson (neé Willis) in the next census as “Elva” Stevenson, age 14, along with four other children.[7] Harry appears in the 1920 Census with his wife Emma and four children ages eight through five. [8]

Missing Records

Here the frustration begins. There appear to be no other records that might help explain this family. For example, Henry Willis does not appear in certain census records, vital records, or probate records :

Census Records

Annie appears as Martha Anne/Annie Stewart in the 1850, 1860 and 1870 censuses for Pencader Hundred, Glasgow Post Office, New Castle County, Delaware. She is in the household of her father James, a farmer in that community. However, Henry Willis does not appear in the 1850 through 1870 censuses for Maryland or any adjoining state. He should be named somewhere, but is not. Furthermore, Annie and Henry do not appear in the 1880 census. It is not all that uncommon for a person to be missed or a name misspelled in one census. However, it is highly unlikely for that to occur three or four times in a row, unless of course, that person wants to be missed. Erin Daniels also told me that Henry may have been a bit of a rascal or a troublemaker. It makes one guess that Henry might have used an alias.

Vital Records

There is no marriage record for the couple, nor are there birth records for any of their children except Harry’s twin Julia. There are no baptism records for any of their children except Harry, who was sick. There is no death record for Annie or for young Harry’s twin Julia. Again, some of this may be due to incomplete or lost records, or perhaps they are just not available online. However, given Henry’s absence in the census record, one has to ask, “Was the couple actually married? Did they use an alias?”

Probate Records

There are no probate records for Henry or Annie, which is not surprising. The couple apparently did not have significant assets. They did not own real estate; they always rented the place they lived. However, Annie Stewart was not from a poor family. She and her sister Mary were the only children of James Stewart and his wife Eliza. After her mother’s death between 1850 and 1860,  Annie continued living with her father. Her sister Mary married Henry Kendall in 1864,[9] and the couple lived on her father’s farm in 1870. Annie was also there in 1870. James Stewart died in 1874[10] owning real estate worth about $2,000 and $400 of personal property.[11]

There is no online probate information for New Castle County, Delaware beyond 1800. Therefore, we do not know whether Annie inherited anything. James Stewart’s probate file may not reveal anything about Henry Willis, but you never know. I will just have to make a trip to Wilmington or Dover when Covid abates, and check the original paper records.

This ends Part 1 and the litany of missing information. In Part 2 we will see if we can find Henry hiding in plain sight.

[1] 1900 Census Philadelphia, Ward 26, District 0628

https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-DTG3-6M1?i=18&cc=1325221&personaUrl=%2Fark%3A%2F61903%2F1%3A1%3AM3W8-DKX

1335 Kick [sic South Hicks] Street

Henry Willis head May 1829 71 M20  MD MD MD Carpenter Rent House

Annie Willis wife Jun 1846     53 M20  4/2 DE DE DE

Lola Willis son [sic Dau] Apr 1882 18  S  PA MD DE

Harry Willis son  Oct 1885 14  S  PA MD DE

[2] A Philadelphia Death Certificate proves a daughter born in 1884 who died that same year: Elinar Jessie Willis, born 1884, died 22 Sep 1884 in Philadelphia, PA, age one month, female, father Henry Willis, mother Annie Willis, https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/2233393:2535?tid=&pid=&queryId=c55646857b4faa216b36bf1856d9b842&_phsrc=DgH3&_phstart=successSource

And, a Philadelphia Birth Record proves a daughter born in 1885 who did not survive. She was a twin of Harry: Julia E. Willis, female, born 16 Oct 1885 in Philadelphia, father Harry Willis, mother Anna Willis

“Pennsylvania Births and Christenings, 1709-1950”, database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V2NV-K9B : 15 February 2020), Julia E. Willis, 1885.

[3] Philadelphia City Directories by various publishers as found on Fold 3.

[4] Pennsylvania and New Jersey Church Records, Eleventh Street Methodist Episcopal Church,https://www.ancestry.com/imageviewer/collections/2451/images/40355_267328-00065?usePUB=true&_phsrc=tQw4&_phstart=successSource&usePUBJs=true&pId=7976645

[5] Philadelphia Death Certificate:

Henry Willis, male, white, married, date of birth unknown, date of death 18 Sep 1906, age 75 years, resided at 1335 So. Hicks Street, was ill for 10 days, chief cause of death Uraemia [kidney failure], contributing causes Nephritis [kidney disease] and myocarditis [inflammation of the heart], Dr. J. Moon Campbell/Camphill?, Philadelphia Hospital, date of burial 21 Sep 1906, place Hillside Cemetery, Undertaker Robert P. Martin, 1444 So. Broad St

“Pennsylvania, Philadelphia City Death Certificates, 1803-1915,” database with images, FamilySearch(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JK37-W2X : 18 February 2021), Henry Willis, 18 Sep 1906; citing cn 23553, Philadelphia City Archives and Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia; FHL microfilm 1,319,466.

[6] 1910 Census Philadelphia Ward 40, District 1033, “United States Census, 1910,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MGHQ-XJ2 : accessed 5 January 2022), Anna Willis, Philadelphia Ward 40, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 1033, sheet 7B, family 143, NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 1410; FHL microfilm 1,375,423.

1826 South Allison Street

Anna Willis F 63 Wid 4/2 DE DE DE Rents Home

Lola dau F27 Sing PA MD DE  Candy Maker in Candy Store

Harry son M 24 Sing PA MD DE Street Car Conductor

Elsa granddau F Sing PA PA PA

[7] 1920 Census, Philadelphia Ward 40, District 1453, https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/77217633:6061?tid=&pid=&queryId=19c95d4c019145aa9bda5fa51a2c83eb&_phsrc=Vvv1&_phstart=successSource

5532 Paschall Avenue

James Stevenson M 37 PA PA PA Auto Mechanic Rents Home

Lola wife F 37                 PA DE MD

Elva Dau F 14  School  PA PA PA

James Son M 8 School  PA PA PA

Harry Son M 7 School  PA PA PA

Reba Dau F 5                   PA PA PA

Mildred Dau F 2 10/12 PA PA PA

[8] 1920 Census, Philadelphia, Ward 40, District 1461, https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/77226506:6061?tid=&pid=&queryId=ccccee670eed5c7a101f6852bb057775&_phsrc=Vvv4&_phstart=successSource

6332 Theoadore Ave.

Harry Willis 34 M Phil MD DE Driver in Coal Yard Rents Home

Emma wife 28 F Phil PA PA

Harry son 8 M Phil Phil Phil in School

Ethel dau 7 F Phil Phil Phil in School

Helen dau 6 F Phil Phil Phil

Effie dau 5 F Phil Phil Phil

[9] Marriage date 28 Apr 1864 per Delaware Marriage Records, https://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?indiv=1&dbid=1508&h=78789&tid=&pid=&queryId=dabeb42f303b1ebacf9892713f541bf5&usePUB=true&_phsrc=Vvv14&_phstart=successSource

[10] James Stewart (of Seth) death date 7 Dec 1874 per Presbyterian Church Records, 1701- 1970, https://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?dbid=61048&h=1500507877&indiv=try&o_vc=Record:OtherRecord&rhSource=7163

[11] 1850 Census Pencader Hundred, New Castle County, Delaware, https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/18428343:8054

James Stewart 44 M DE Farmer

Eliza                    44 F  MD

Mary E                     7 F DE

Martha A                5 F DE

John Stewart    46 M DE Farmer

David Willey    14 M DE

1860 Census Pencader Hundred, New Castle County, Delaware, Glasgow Post Office, https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/10383554:7667

James Stewart    53 M DE Farmer $2,800 real prop, $750 personal prop

Mary                         17 F DE

Martha                     14 F DE attends school

1870 Census Pencader Hundred, New Castle County, Delaware, Glasgow Post Office, https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/1897649:7163

James Stewart    64 M DE Farmer $2,000 real prop, $400 personal prop

Martha                     24 F DE Keeps House

Henry Kendall      35 M DE Farm Hand [second family in same dwelling]

Mary E                     27 F DE Keeps House

Mary E                     5   F DE at Home

Ella May                  3  F DE at Home

Harry                        1 M DE at Home

Vietnam War Story – Medevac Meadow

As I mentioned before, I have been neglecting genealogy in favor of working on the second edition of the book Red Markers, Close Air Support for the Vietnamese Airborne, 1962 – 1975. The book recounts the history of the forward air controller unit — the Red Markers — I served with in Vietnam. This unit worked exclusively to support the Vietnamese Airborne and the American advisors — known as Red Hats — who served with them on the ground. The following article (copyrighted in October 2021) describes one of the more exciting engagements that occurred in 1970 during the incursion into the Fishhook region of Cambodia to destroy enemy base camps and supplies.

Medevac Meadow[1]

The Vietnamese 6th Airborne Infantry Battalion moved with the rest of the 1st Brigade from Song Be during early May, reinforcing the three battalions already engaged in the Fishhook. The battalion headquartered at Fire Support Base (FSB) Oklahoma while its troopers maneuvered in the region. FSB Oklahoma was about ten miles inside Cambodia off Highway 7 on the eastern edge of the Memot Rubber Plantation.[2] The fire base was the operational home of the 1st Brigade’s Artillery Battalion of 105 mm howitzers and the long range 8-inch howitzers of A Battery of the 2nd Battalion, 32nd Field Artillery Regiment, the “Proud Americans.”

On 23 May, a task force of the 61st and 63rd Companies of the 6th Battalion encountered NVA troops during a ground sweep about eight miles southeast of FSB Oklahoma. After a brief fight, the NVA withdrew to the west side of a clearing oriented southeast to northwest, and the Airborne retired to the east. The battalion senior advisor, Red Hat Captain Jesse Myers overhead in a command-and-control helicopter called for artillery fire from FSB Oklahoma and asked Red Marker Control to divert some airstrikes to the enemy’s possible routes of withdrawal.

The artillery fire mission required extra caution. Only eighty meters separated the NVA on the west side of the clearing from the Airborne troopers on the east side. The standard safe distance from an 8-inch round with its 200 pounds of explosive was 100 meters for unsheltered personnel. A miscalculation could prove fatal. The howitzers’ alignment, elevation, and propellant charge had to be just right. The fire control center made its calculations and then double checked them. Then A Battery Commander, Captain Lee Hayden, double checked the “double check” by hand.[3] Myers watched the first shots land on target and gave the okay to fire for effect.

A Red Marker FAC arrived on scene and orbited to the east awaiting a set of fighters scrambled from Bien Hoa. Myers briefed the FAC and shut down the artillery when the fighters arrived. They bombed and napalmed the western tree line as darkness fell. The Airborne dug in for the night. Overnight, FSB Oklahoma stood ready if needed, but only sporadic small arms fire came from the opposite side of the clearing.

At dawn on the 24th, the NVA attacked in strength. The Airborne drove them back while suffering several killed and eight seriously wounded. Myers again called on the artillery at FSB Oklahoma and requested Red Markers direct some airstrikes on the NVA positions. Red Marker 16, Lieutenant David G. Blair, already in the air, diverted to the site to control immediate airstrikes aimed at possible routes of retreat. After the two Airborne companies secured the area, the Red Hats on the ground, Staff Sergeants Louis Clason and Michael Philhower, requested Medevac. Myers relayed the request to Brigade HQ and asked for gunship cover. The request went out to the 1st Air Cavalry’s Medevac and Blue Max gunships units at about 1100 hours.[4]

A Medevac helicopter piloted by “The Wild Deuce” (official call sign Medevac 2), First Lieutenant Stephen F. Modica, and a pair of Cobra gunships, Precise Swords 12 and 12A, received the requests for the evacuation mission.  Modica was en route from Phuoc Vinh to Katum when he got the call. Red Hat Sergeant First Class Louis Richard Rocco, happened to be on board hitching a ride to Katum. Rocco, a qualified medic and advisor to the Airborne’s Medical Battalion, sometimes volunteered to fly on Medevac missions. When Rocco heard Medevac 2 was going to pick up wounded paratroopers, he asked to stay on board and help. Modica landed at Katum, offloaded some supplies, and picked up a steel chest protector for Rocco. The Wild Deuce departed Katum toward the task force location, rendezvousing along the way with the Blue Max gunships, Precise Swords 12 and 12A. Meanwhile, another Red Marker relieved Blair, who returned to Quan Loi for fuel. Myers again shut down the artillery while the Red Marker FAC directed more bombs into the western tree line. In the early afternoon as the airstrike finished, the trio of helicopters neared the clearing. Myers briefed them on the situation and suggested a run in from the south. Precise Sword 12 deployed low to protect the Medevac, and Precise Sword 12 A remained as high bird to cover them both.

All Hell Broke Loose

The Wild Deuce came in low and fast with Precise Sword 12 to his left. They approached from the south just above the treetops. Modica wanted to give any North Vietnamese gunners only the briefest glimpse of the Medevac helicopter before setting down, loading wounded, and speeding away.

Red Hat Clason, advisor to the Vietnamese 63rd Airborne Infantry Company,  stepped out in the clearing and watched the green colored smoke spew from the smoke grenade he had popped to guide The Wild Deuce. Behind the tree line, Philhower, advisor to 61st Company commander Captain Nguyen Van Nghiem, manned the FM radio. Everyone heard the distinctive whup-whup-whup of the Huey’s blades well before it entered the clearing.

Lieutenant Hwang, commander of the 63rd had stretcher bearers waiting in the tree line with the seriously wounded troopers. Hwang and Clason waited tensely, hoping they could load the men without any trouble. Modica brought the ship into the clearing, lined up on Clason, and expertly flared for touchdown.

Just then, all hell broke loose. AK-47 and .51 caliber machine gun fire ripped into the cabin from the southwestern tree line. The Cobra gunships responded immediately. They returned fire with 2.75-inch high explosive and flechette rockets, miniguns, and 40 mm grenade launchers, hoping to suppress the enemy fire long enough for Medevac 2 to get the wounded on board and get to safety. The Medevac’s door gunners opened up with their M-60 machine guns. Rocco fired his M-16 out the left door into the trees. Modica felt two enemy slugs glance off his “chicken plate” steel chest protector. At the same time, a third round shattered his left knee. The Medevac pancaked into the clearing. Copilot Lieutenant Leroy (Lee) G. Caurbarreaux swiveled his head to give Modica some shit for such a bad landing before realizing Steve was hit. Lee immediately grabbed the controls. “I’ve got the ship!” he shouted over the intercom. As he pulled pitch and poured on full power, Caurbarreaux jabbed the UHF key, shouting now to the two Cobra gunships, “Precise Swords One Two and One Two Alpha, we are outta here! Cover us!”

Sergeant Clason hot-footed it out of the clearing as Medevac 2 spooled up and climbed toward safety. But safety was a long way off. Coming in hot and low to the clearing made the bird harder to hit. Liftoff was a different matter. The UH-1H helicopter took time to get back up to speed and out of the clearing. The NVA gunners got a clear view of the slow-moving Huey and unleashed everything they had. The entire western tree line lit up. From the left seat, Modica saw the RPM going way past normal maximum and knew they were in trouble. He switched to Guard channel and broadcast, “The Wild Deuce is going down! XU5101! MAYDAY! MAYDAY! XU5101!”[5]

At about 50 feet in the air, gunfire and aerodynamic stress ripped the tail boom from the ship. The Huey spun out of control, crashing to the ground on its right side. Smoke billowed from the chopper as the fuel tanks burst into flame. In his C&C chopper, Myers watched in horror as the Medevac seemed to land, then shot almost straight up and fell to the ground on its side thrashing briefly like a wounded insect. He thought at first it had fallen on Clason.

In fact, Clason was not hurt, unlike the Medevac crew. Sergeant Gary L. Taylor, right side door gunner, died on impact, crushed by the aircraft. Medic SP5 Terry T. Burdette was badly burned and suffered multiple fractures. Crew chief and left door gunner, Sergeant Patrick Martin, was thrown clear and knocked unconscious. Rocco was also thrown clear, breaking a wrist and hip. Modica’s leg was shattered, and Caurbarreaux had multiple cuts and bruises.

Precise Sword 12 immediately came to a hover in front of the burning wreck. First Lieutenant George Alexander swiveled the minigun under the Cobra’s chin, spraying the tree line. Warrant Officer Brian Russ, piloting from the back seat, rotated the gunship left and right, releasing salvo after salvo of high explosive rockets into the enemy position. Their ship sustained 29 hits including several that destroyed the cockpit canopy. One round blew the mic off Russ’s helmet, but the airmen held their position. Precise Sword 12A rolled in from above and strafed the tree line with rockets, minigun, and 40 mm grenade launcher. Chief Warrant Officer-2 Paul Garrity and his copilot Warrant Officer James Moran took several hits, although the enemy focused most of its attention on the lower gunship.

When the Medevac hit the ground, Philhower dropped the radio handset and sprinted toward the clearing, leaving Myers overhead in the dark. Even without radio communication, Myers knew the paratroopers would try to get any survivors out of the downed bird. Lieutenant Hwang immediately sent a skirmish line of 63rd Company troopers forward to provide covering fire while Clason and Philhower approached the wreck. Myers informed FSB Oklahoma about the crisis in the clearing and asked for more artillery fire. The 8-inchers stepped up their fire on the western tree line, keeping the NVA’s head down. The enemy did not venture into the clearing. The Blue Max gunships kept up covering fire as the two Red Hat Staff Sergeants pulled survivors from the wreckage and helped them to the friendly tree line.

Failed Rescue Attempts[6]

Modica’s Mayday call attracted numerous helicopters wanting to immediately pick up the injured crew. Precise Sword 12 escorted the first ship, call sign Killer Spade, as it approached the field. Intense ground fire erupted, and Killer Spade aborted the attempt. Meanwhile, back at Quan Loi, Captain Henry O. Tuell, III, aircraft commander of Medevac 1, learned that the Wild Deuce was down. He shouted to his pilot Lieutenant Howard Elliott, who was in the shower at the time, to get his butt in gear. They had to go get Modica and his crew. Elliott scrambled into his clothes. Tuell had the Huey cranked when Elliott arrived at the flight line still dripping soapy water. Medevac 1 approached the clearing from the south,again escorted by Precise Sword 12, and took ground fire that wounded Tuell. Elliott took control and flew back to Quan Loi where Tuell got medical attention. Lieutenant John Read, Medevac 12, made the third attempt. At this point, Precise Swords 12 and 12A were low on fuel and completely out of ammo. Alexander briefed a new section of gunships that arrived on station to coordinate subsequent rescue attempts. Again, intense ground fire foiled the attempt and crippled the Medevac bird. A fourth attempt by Chief Warrant Officer Raymond Zepp, Medevac 21, had the same result.

Captain Myers advised the last two helicopters attempting a pickup to approach from the east directly over the Airborne position and land as close to the tree line as possible. However, those pilots flew the same pattern that failed all day. They came in from the south parallel to the Airborne position, exposing themselves to enemy fire the length of the field. Although the NVA crippled Medevac 12 and 21, both successfully landed several hundred meters from the firefight. Other helicopters in the area picked up those crews and took them to safety. But the wounded paratroopers and the injured crew of Medevac 2 would spend the night on the ground with no medical care except first aid.

Clason and Philhower were awarded the Silver Star for their actions. Vice President Agnew presented the awards at a ceremony shortly afterwards. Sergeant First Class Rocco was recognized several years later for rescuing survivors from the chopper and administering first aid before he became immobilized from his injuries.[7] He was awarded the Medal of Honor presented by President Gerald Ford in February 1974. The Medevac pilot and crew also received awards for bravery. Modica received a Silver Star and Caurbarreaux, Taylor (posthumously), Burdette, and Martin each a Distinguished Flying Cross. Those were not the only awards conferred, for this engagement was far from over, but unbelievably, the gunship crews received no awards.[8]

Jesse Myers knew what needed to happen next. The two Airborne companies had run into a buzz saw. But they had given better than they had gotten in return. They had a good defensive position and overwhelming artillery and air support. The only thing they did not have was mobility. Ideally, they would pull back and bring in a B-52 ArcLight mission to pound the enemy. But with the number of wounded and injured, the paratroopers could not easily withdraw. They would not abandon their wounded, and they could not easily move them. They needed to hold their position until after a successful evacuation of casualties. Some of the enemy fire now came from the north and south sides of the clearing. The NVA apparently were attempting to flank the two companies or at least be in position to score more hits on helicopters they knew would be coming. Myers adjusted the artillery to compensate.

Airstrikes

That afternoon, the Red Markers diverted more strike aircraft to Medevac Meadow, where Myers informed them of the expanded targets. For several hours, fighter aircraft bombed and strafed the enemy-held tree lines on the north, south, and west sides of the clearing. Red Marker 26, Lieutenant Lloyd L. Prevett, piloting an O-2A from Phuoc Vinh, flew 4.8 hours, his longest mission of the war. The twin engine O-2A had a rocket pod of seven rockets under each wing. During his mission, Prevett expended all fourteen smoke rockets, one at a time, marking different strike locations around the perimeter of Medevac Meadow. After running out of Willie Pete, he marked targets with smoke grenades tossed out of the pilot-side window. Prevett remembers most of the fighters he controlled were F-100’s. He recalls at least one flight of  A-37’s and a few Vietnamese A-1E’s.  Prevett recalls:

“One interesting note is I requested a flight with wall-to-wall nape and 20 mm, figuring it would be a standard load of snake and nape.[9] I was shocked when a flight of two F -100’s showed up with just nape and 20mm. When I put them in, the nape uncovered a fortified bunker and of course, no snake to employ. Took care of that on the next flight. My hat is off to all the fighter pilots that showed up that day. They put their asses on the line to ensure each and every drop was right where it was needed. Gives me shivers today thinking about what everyone did to try and protect the guys on the ground.”[10]

Lloyd did not record the number of strikes he directed, but remembers being amazed on his way back to Phouc Vinh at the amount of grease pencil writing on the side window. He had scribbled on the plexiglass the standard info for each flight … mission number, call sign, number of fighters in the flight, ordnance load, expected time of arrival on scene, and bomb damage assessment. Given the number of strikes Prevett controlled, it is a wonder he saw anything through that window.

The O-2A could fly for more than six hours if conserving fuel with a lean mixture at cruise power setting. But directing airstrikes with the mixture rich and power often “balls to the wall” for almost five hours, Prevett’s O-2 was near minimum fuel when he landed at Phuoc Vinh. The crew chief refueled and rearmed the Skymaster, cleaned the inside of the window, and the detailed record of those strike missions was lost to history.

Radio operator Sergeant Jim Yeonopolus manned Red Marker Control outside the Airborne Tactical Operations Center at Quan Loi. He remembers the firefight became more hectic about 1500, when the FACs asked him to call up additional airstrikes. As daylight faded, the fighting became more intense. Earlier, Red Hat Sergeants John A. Brubaker and James H. Collier asked Yeonopolus if he would accompany them to the Meadow and stay on the ground overnight to call in air support if needed. Jim told them he would be more effective with his full set of radios at Quan Loi. Brubaker and Collier did not make it into Medevac Meadow. They may have been on the third helicopter turned away by ground fire trying to get into the clearing.

Until nightfall, Red Markers continued to direct airstrikes into the enemy positions. Red Marker 18, Lieutenant Gary Willis, controlled two more F-100 flights just before dark. According to Captain Myers, the Red Markers directed 36 tactical air sorties during two days at Medevac Meadow.  One Red Marker dropped canisters of water to the Red Beret troopers who had not been resupplied for two days. Most of the containers missed the mark or burst upon landing, but some made it into the perimeter intact.[11] Early the next morning, the Medevac crew chief and copilot retrieved a few glass bottles of saline solution that survived the wreck and fire.[12]

Overnight, the artillery support from Oklahoma became even more important. The NVA assaulted the Airborne position three times during the night. The Proud Americans at Oklahoma responded each time with precise artillery fire, sometimes extremely close to the eastern tree line. Many of those gunners had not slept much during the last 48 hours. The Red Hats also called on flare ships and gunships to help defend the Airborne position.

A Rescue Plan

Myers returned to the 6th Battalion’s command post at FSB Oklahoma, monitoring the situation on the ground via the radio net. At the firebase, he received a surprise visit from Lieutenant General Michael S. Davison, II Field Force Commander, who asked simply, “What do you need, Captain?” Myers replied, “Sir, I need a B-52 strike.” Davison said, “You’ve got it.” The general left and ordered an Arc Light mission for 1700 hours the next day.

Brigadier General Robert M. Shoemaker flew in later that night to be briefed on the situation. Shoemaker was a principal architect of airmobile warfare concepts and an experienced helicopter pilot. He flew his own command and control chopper throughout his tour.[13] Shoemaker listened to all the information about the condition of the wounded (there were now about 40 casualties), the resupply situation, and the ability of the troopers to hold on. He vowed to return in the morning with additional resources and a plan.

He arrived the next day at FSB Oklahoma with the promised reinforcements. Three Medevac crews flew Dustoff Hueys borrowed from the 45th Medical Company, Air Ambulance, out of Long Binh since all the Medevac birds were either committed elsewhere or out of commission. The 15th Medical Battalion commander flew in with his Huey to direct the Medevac birds. Six Blue Max gunships arrived along with their commander who flew a Huey B-Model gunship. A command and control helicopter carried the leader of the ground forces, his advisor, and the artillery command: Lieutenant Colonel Truong Vinh Phuoc, Vietnamese 6th Battalion commander; Red Hat Captain Myers, battalion senior advisor; Captain Hayden, commander of A Battery, 2nd of the 32nd Field Artillery; and the Vietnamese artillery commander. General Shoemaker flew his own Huey in overall control.[14]

Beginning at 0930, Red Markers directed a series of strikes into the perimeter of Medevac Meadow controlled by the well-bunkered NVA. As the airstrikes ended at 1100, according to Myers’s description:[15]

“The plan was for the LZ to be ringed by Arty fire, friendly troops, and gunship suppressive fire. After we were airborne, we first adjusted the Arty. There were two ARVN 105mm How batteries, an ARVN 155 mm How battery, and the American 8-inch battery.[16] The prep was fired and the wood line was smoked[17] and then the extraction was started. Arty fires were not shut down, but shifted to form a corridor through which the Medevac ships were to fly. The gunships formed a continuous “daisy chain” whereby suppressive fire was kept on the area of greatest enemy concentration.”

After the artillery adjustment, Shoemaker flew his chopper at low level the length of the field to check the safety of the corridor before clearing the gunships and Medevac birds to proceed.[18] The plan worked almost to perfection. The Medevacs came in, loaded up and took off in short order. The first two in line made it out of the clearing without any damage, but the third ship was hit heavily, sank back to the ground, and began to burn. The Cobra commander immediately dropped into Medevac Meadow with his Huey gunship, picked up the men who had been on the third rescue bird, and safely exited the hot LZ. The next day Silver Stars were awarded to nine rescue participants. Nineteen days later, General Shoemaker received the same award. General Dong, commander of the Vietnamese Airborne Division, presented a Cross of Gallantry in a ceremony at FSB Oklahoma to Captain Hayden and Lieutenant Granberg for the excellent work by their 8-inch battery. Red Marker Radio Operator Jim Yeonopolus also received a Cross of Gallantry recognizing his work during the engagement.

Back in the Fight

Relieved of their serious casualties, the Airborne companies withdrew a couple of klicks to the southeast. Resupply choppers soon arrived with food, water, ammo, and medical supplies. At 1700 hours, the promised Arc Light mission hit the west side of Medevac Meadow. A light helicopter sent later to assess the damage was driven off by ground fire but not before seeing the NVA lining up their dead in rows. While there is no official estimate of the NVA casualties, they must have suffered tremendous losses based on the following: they made four frontal assaults across the open meadow into the dug-in Airborne position at the eastern tree line; FSB Oklahoma poured extremely accurate fire into the NVA western tree line; Air Force fighters bombed and strafed with 36 sorties during the two days; Blue Max Cobras flew numerous sorties expending rockets, minigun, and 40 mm grenades into the NVA position; and the B-52 Arc Light mission dropped 81 tons of explosives.The 61st and 63rd swept the area the next day capturing weapons, signal equipment, and some wounded combatants. Some of those were in a hospital complex.

The two companies continued to battle in the Fishhook until withdrawn with the rest of 6th Battalion on 25 June. At that point, each company had about 40 effectives remaining of their original 100 troopers.

The engagement at Medevac Meadow impressed Myers in a number of ways, as he wrote in his letter to U. S. Army Aviation Digest:

“I saw time and again the courage and concern of one pilot on behalf of another. I saw outstanding teamwork between ARVN and American forces, between air and ground forces, and between combat and combat support forces. I saw magnificent employment of air/ground coordination to provide massed fires. I saw commanders all the way up to the three-star level who were vitally interested and concerned for the welfare of their men and who were willing to get personally involved to remedy a bad situation. And finally, I saw raw courage and heroism displayed time and time again by U.S. and ARVN soldiers alike.”[19]

 

[1] The description of the following event is based on a number of sources, which contained sometimes conflicting detail: magazine article by then Captain Stephen F. Modica, U.S. Army Aviation Digest, June 1975; letter written by Red Hat Major Jesse W. Myers in response to that article; emails among various surviving participants including Jerry Granberg and Ralph Jones (artillerymen), Patrick Martin (Medevac crew chief), and Major (R) Jesse Myers; a mission statement by Cobra pilots George Alexander and Paul Garrity, and other sources as individually footnoted.

[2] Grid Coordinates XU425098, per the History of the “Proud Americans” at ­­­­ https://proudamericans.homestead.com/VIETNAM_1963-1971-1.pdf

[3] Emails July 2021, former Lieutenant Jerry Granberg, second in command, A Battery, 2nd of the 32nd Field Artillery.

[4] Medevac Platoon, 15th Medical Battalion, 1st Air Cavalry Division, and Aerial Rocket Artillery, 2nd Battalion, 20th Artillery Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Division.

[5] The grid coordinates Modica screamed into the mike designated a one-kilometer square of territory about five miles inside the Fishhook north of Tay Ninh Province, South Vietnam. In an article Modica wrote for the magazine U.S. Army Aviation Digest, he incorrectly stated the coordinates as XU5606, which is right on the border of Cambodia and Vietnam rather than five miles inside. Chalk that up to the “Fog of War” and frailty of human memory. Interestingly, “5606” is the designation of the hydraulic fluid used in the Huey, which might explain why the number came to Modica’s mind while writing from memory about five years later. According to the Vietnam Helicopter Pilots’ Association, XU507010 is the six digit grid coordinate for the downed Medevac.

[6] Details of the failed rescue attempts are from several sources:

[7] From the Citation to accompany the Congressional Medal of Honor awarded to Warrant Officer (then Sergeant First Class) Louis Richard Rocco.

[8] The Blue Max aircraft commanders, Lt. Alexander and WO2 Garrity were recommended for the Silver Star, but that paperwork was lost. To date, neither received recognition for their skill and courage.

[9] Snake and Nape – Air Force slang for High-drag bombs (“Snake”) and Napalm (Nape”), a standard ordinance load for situations with troops in contact.

[10] Emails with Colonel Lloyd Prevett, USAF (Ret), Dec 2020.

[11] The Red Marker is unknown. It could have been Lieutenant Blair, Lieutenant Byron L Mayberry, or Lieutenant Lawrence H. Shaevitz, all of whom are now deceased. The author suspects it was an O-2A FAC because Myers states the plane made several passes dropping containers from its armament shackles. The O-1 could only drop from all of its pylons at once using an emergency “jettison” button. The O-2 could select a single shackle and drop one at a time.

[12] Emails, Jan-Jul 2021, former Sergeant Patrick Martin, crew chief on Medevac 2, Medevac Platoon, 15th Medical Battalion.

[13] Lieutenant General (R ) H.G. “Pete” Taylor, telephone interviews, January 2021.

[14] Shoemaker logged 14.3 hours flying time on 25 May 1970 per Individual Flight Record, DA Form 759-1, Archives Texas A & M University – Central Texas

[15] From Myers’s letter to U.S. Army Aviation Digest, undated but shortly after June 1975.

[16] Myers does not know the location of the Vietnamese batteries engaged in this effort. The Vietnamese had their own forward observers and controlled their own batteries.

[17] With white phosphorous shells to screen the evacuation flight path

[18] Per General Order Number 2605, Award of the Silver Star Medal (First Oak Leaf Cluster) to Brigadier General Robert M. Shoemaker, 13 June 1970. The first award of the Silver Star and of a Distinguished Flying Cross to then Colonel Shoemaker came in 1965 as a Battalion Commander with the 12th Cavalry Regiment.

[19] Myers letter.

Revolutionary War Story: William Rankin of Virginia’s Northern Neck (part 3 of 5) – UPDATED

I have revised this article to add information about the children of William Rankin … belatedly discovered in another tour through the Mason County, Kentucky deed and court records.

I enjoyed getting to know William again. He must have been something!

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  

Part 2 of this series ended with the Battle of Ft. Washington on November 16, 1776. William Rankin was captured there and imprisoned in Manhattan. Against the odds, he survived. His elder brother Robert was not in that battle, so far as we can determine.[1] Their war experience diverged after Ft. Washington, despite the fact that they had both enlisted in Captain Brady’s Company of Hugh Stephenson’s (later Rawlin’s) Maryland and Virginia Rifle Regiment.[2]

Let’s turn to their individual war stories in parts 3 and 4 of this series.  We’ll start with William because there is so much detail in his pension application file. Robert, bless his heart, didn’t have much to say about his war experience.

Private William Rankin[3]

The facts William states in his pension application dovetail with military history to a “t.”[4] His memory is awesome. His military service had been over for fifty-four years and four months when he made his application declaration in November 1833 from Mason County, Kentucky. Here is what his declaration said, in part:

    • He enlisted in July 1776 for a term of three years in Berkeley County, Virginia. He enlisted in Capt. William Brady’s company of Col. Hugh Stephenson’s regiment. He notes that Stephenson soon died and the company was attached to Col. Moses Rawlings regiment. William didn’t say so, but Rawlings was Stephenson’s second-in-command of the Maryland and Virginia Rifle Regiment. The regiment to which William’s company belonged didn’t change after Stephenson’s death, it just got a new commander.
    • William marched first to Philadelphia, then went to Trenton by water, then marched to Princeton.[5] All of his regiment went first to Philadelphia, where Washington was having his men inoculated for smallpox.[6] Next, William marched to Ft. Lee and Ft. Washington. [7] He stated the precise date of the battle at Ft. Washington. I’ll bet he could also have testified to the weather conditions.
    • The entire garrison at Ft. Washington was overwhelmed and surrendered. The British imprisoned William in one of the notorious “sugar houses” in Manhattan before transferring him “after some time” to the British ship “the Duttons.”[8] The majority of British prisoners in New York City – four out of five – did not survive captivity.[9] Instead, they died of starvation or disease. William must have been a pretty tough teenager.

OK, that gets us up to the point in Part 2 where we left William.  In February or March 1777, the British paroled him and he went from New York to Philadelphia. In April 1777, said William, “he was sent home by direction of Gen. Daniel Morgan who happened to be a personal acquaintance.”[10] He was recalled from home a year later to rejoin the remains of Rawlings’ Regiment at Ft. Frederick in Frederick, MD.[11] From there he went to Ft. Pitt in Pittsburgh, where he worked as an “artificer” – someone who constructed fortifications.[12] He was discharged at Ft. Pitt when his three-year enlistment ended in mid-1779.

Now let’s go back to when Morgan sent him home from Philadelphia. Thomas Jones filed an affidavit in support of William’s pension application confirming that Morgan ordered him to take William home to Virginia. Jones said “that in the year 1777 he received from the hand of General Morgan … William Rankin in … Philadelphia, a sick soldier … to convey Rankin to Virginia, his former state of residence.”[13]

Jones took William home in a wagon.[14] In my imagination, William was horizontal on the wagon bed, on top of and under (I hope) some blankets. A John Kercheval also filed an affidavit in support of William’s pension application. Kercheval stated that “he met the said William Rankin returning to Virginia then in a low state of health in the wagon of Thomas Jones who lived in the neighborhood.”[15]

Where the heck was William’s home? He was still a teenager in April 1777, about 18. You would think he was going home to recuperate under the care of his family of origin, wouldn’t you? Inquiring minds want to know who they were …

William leaves us dangling on that question. Kercheval was more helpful. In the middle of his affidavit is this attention-grabber: Kercheval said he understood “from Mr. [William] Rankin’s brother Robert Rankin, who was an officer, that his brother William” was at one time ordered to Pittsburgh. Yes, indeed, William Rankin was once in Pittsburgh, where he was discharged. William’s brother is the man I nicknamed “Lt. Robert” in the first article in this series on these Rankins.

William may not have identified his parents, but at least his file proves a brother, who comprises one clue to his family of origin. There’s more. William also provides the link between the Rankin and Kercheval families. William said that “John Kercheval and his wife Jane Kercheval  both know that he did serve in the war of the Revolution and the latter recollects the day he marched from her fathers in Frederick County Virginia.”

John Kercheval’s wife was Jane Berry, daughter of Thomas Berry of Frederick County.[16]  One of Jane Berry Kercheval’s sisters was Margaret “Peggy” Berry, who married Lt. Robert Rankin in Frederick County. Seventeen or 18-year-old William Rankin may have enlisted in Berkeley County, but he went marching off to war from Frederick County – to be exact, from Thomas Berry’s house. I will bet a big stack of genealogical chips that Jane Berry and her sister Peggy, both still single, watched Robert Rankin (who was then engaged to Peggy)[17] and his brother William march off to war from their father Thomas Berry’s house in Frederick County. That is a nice visual image – two sisters and two brothers.[18]

Kercheval also testified that “William Rankins not long after the war was done settled in … Frederick” County, where he was still living when Kercheval moved to Mason County, Kentucky about 1798-1799.[19] That tells us William probably wasn’t living in Frederick County before the war. William was definitely in Frederick by at least 1792, though, because a Frederick County lease and release[20] says William was “of Frederick” in that year. The deeds also prove William had a wife named Mary Ann and a son named Harrison.[21] Thomas Berry was a witness to those two instruments.

There is another tidbit or two in William’s pension file. Kercheval also said that William Rankin was “a very respectable man and entitled to credit in any court or county … he is a wealthy farmer of Mason County Kentucky.” Some of William’s wealth undoubtedly came from land speculation, which may have been the financial undoing of his brother Robert. William said that his discharge papers had been “lost long ago or put in the land office in Virginia to get land warrants.”[22] At that point, his memory fogged up a bit. He said he “could not recollect but possibly the latter.” He probably got land warrants but “having traded so much in that business cannot speak certainly.”

William was certainly wealthy by the standards of the day, when wealth was measured in part by ownership of enslaved persons. The 1836 inventory of William’s estate included twenty enslaved persons.[23] The current account of his estate in November 1839 shows an amount to be distributed of $17,911, after payment of an agreed $1,000 fee to the two estate administrators.[24]

That is all of William Rankin’s story I can tease out of the records I have accessed.[25] He died intestate in Mason County on April 12, 1836, leaving a widow and children to collect the remainder of his pension.[26] Unfortunately, William’s pension file doesn’t name them.[27] William may be buried in the Old Washington Cemetery (AKA the Washington Baptist Church Cemetery) in Mason County. [28] The 1810 through 1830 census records for Mason County suggest he had as many as ten children. Here is proof of three of them.

  • Harrison Rankin, who was born by 1792 in Frederick Co., Virginia, is conclusively proved by a lease and release.[29] He is most likely the same man who appeared in the 1850 census in Scott County, Kentucky at age 58. He was a merchant, lived in Georgetown, had at least four children, and last appeared in the Scott County census in 1870.[30]
  • John L. Rankin was one administrator of William’s estate.[31] I have not been able to track him with confidence.
  • Robert P. Rankin was also an administrator. He probably moved at some point to Scott County along with Harrison, although I haven’t found Robert in the census there. Some Robert P. Rankin is buried in the Georgetown Cemetery,  b. 1805 – d. 1892. It is also possible that Robert P. Rankin was the man by that name who married Mary C. Withers in April 1832 in Bourbon Co., KY.

AND HERE IS THE REVISED PART: I just found (how did I miss it in the first place?) a Mason County, Kentucky Deed executed by parties identified as the   heirs at law of William Rankin. It can be found in Mason County Deed Book 43: 65. It is a conveyance of William’s land by his heirs at law … meaning that William died intestate and his estate descended according to Kentucky’s law of intestate descent and distribution. The heirs sold William’s tract to Benjamin Harbeson for $12,930. It was near the town of Washington on the waters of Lawrence’s Creek, adjacent to a Berry family. The deed excepted a seventy-foot square graveyard.

Here are the heirs, along with the names of their spouses and their locations as of September 1836, when the deed was executed. Each of the heirs and his/her spouse signed the deed.

  1. Blackston H. Rankin and wife Elizabeth of Bracken County, Kentucky.
  2. James M. Rankin and wife Lorina, also of Bracken County.
  3. John Hall and wife Elizabeth Rankin Hall of Scott County, Kentucky.
  4. Wyete (sic, Wyatt?) C. Webb and wife Ann D. Rankin Webb, also of Scott County.
  5. George D. Stockton and wife Harriett Rankin Stockton of Fleming County, Kentucky.
  6. John L. Rankin and wife Mary J. of Mason County.
  7. George W. Stockton and wife Caroline S.? Rankin of Illinois.
  8. Robert P. Rankin and wife Mary C. of Scott County, Kentucky.
  9. Thomas P. Rankin of Mason County.

Piling on, here is a record from Mason County Court Order Book M: 403 (FHL Film No. 8192456, Image No. 563 et seq.) for September 1836 names eleven children rather than nine, proved by the oaths of John Hall and Marshall Rankin. The purpose of the order was to establish a claim to William’s pension. The children are named in this order:

  1. Harrison Rankin
  2. Blackston H. Rankin
  3. James M. Rankin
  4. John L. Rankin
  5. Robert P. Rankin
  6. Thomas Rankin
  7. Elizabeth married John Hall
  8. Sarah married James Rankins
  9. Harriet married George D. Stockton
  10. Ann married Wyatt Webb
  11. Caroline married George W. Stockton

The court order list adds two children to the list from the deed: a son Harrison and a daughter Sarah, who married James Rankins. It also states that William Rankin died on 12 April 1836 and his widow Mary Ann died on 29 July 1836.

Rest in peace, William. And now … on to your famous brother in part 4 of this series.

See you on down the road.

Robin

[1] Gary and I found no military records to prove Robert’s location in 1776. Consequently, we can only speculate why he wasn’t in the battle at Ft. Washington. Perhaps he was one of the Rifle Regiment’s members who remained at Ft. Lee because of sickness? See Tucker F. Hentz, Unit History of the Maryland and Virginia Rifle Regiment (1776–1781): Insights from the Service Record of Capt. Adamson Tannehill (Richmond: Virginia Historical Society, 2007) 12, Note 50, at this link. Perhaps Robert was actually in the battle, but was neither killed nor captured? Statistically, that is highly unlikely.

[2] William’s pension application declaration expressly stated that he enlisted in Brady’s company. Robert’s declaration didn’t name a company. Fortunately, muster and payroll records for Gabriel Long’s composite company of Virginia riflemen consistently name remnants of Brady’s company, including Robert Rankin. Those rolls specifically identify Robert as a member of Brady’s company. The remaining members of the other two rifle companies (Captains Shepherd’s and West’s) that were decimated at Ft. Washington also appear on Long’s composite rifle company rolls.

[3] Information about William Rankin’s military history is largely taken from his pension application file, available for a fee at Fold3 on Ancestry.com. I made screen shots of many of the original images at Fold3 (available free at Clayton Library), but they rarely include the page number assigned to each image by Fold3. Accordingly, I have simply cited to “William’s pension application” with a brief description of the document in question.

[4] William’s pension declaration echoes the history of the Maryland and Virginia Rifle Regiment, some of which was the subject part 2 of this series.

[5] Pension file of William Rankin, S.31315 (hereafter, “William Rankin’s pension file”), his sworn declaration supporting his pension application dated 22 Nov. 1833 in Mason Co., KY.

[6] Hentz, Maryland and Virginia Rifle Regiment. See p. 15 re: smallpox inoculations. The Philadelphia location was obviously before the British occupied the city in September 1777 following Washington’s defeat at Brandywine.

[7] William Rankin’s pension file, sworn declaration.

[8] Id.

[9] https://revolutionarywar.us, discussion of “Prisoner of War Facts,” which states “[b]y the end of 1776, there were over 5,000 prisoners held in New York City. More than half … came from the soldiers captured at the battle of Fort Washington and Fort Lee.” Four out of five prisoners died.

[10] Morgan was actually a Colonel when he sent William home, although he ended his career as a General and was undoubtedly referred to with that title by anyone who knew him. Morgan lived on a farm just east of Winchester, Frederick Co., and was apparently acquainted with the Rankin family. https://emergingrevolutionarywar.org/2019/05/27/george-washington-daniel-morgan-and-winchester-virginia-on-memorial-day/

[11] William Rankin’s pension file, sworn declaration.

[12] United States Revolutionary War Rolls, 1775-1783, Familysearch.org, FHL Film/Fiche Number 7197150, image 57, return of Capt. Heth’s Company at Ft. Pitt, listing Private William Rankins as an “artificer.” He must have recovered nicely from his prison ordeal.

[13] William Rankin’s pension file, affidavit of Thomas Jones. I took a few liberties with the affidavit’s spelling.

[14] Id., affidavit of John Kercheval.

[15] Id.

[16] Will of Thomas Berry of Frederick Co., VA dated 20 Feb 1806, proved Frederick Co. 4 Mar 1819. Copy certified and recorded in Mason Co. at Will Book E: 17 et seq. Thomas named his daughter Peggy, who married Col. Robert Rankin (his rank in the KY militia, not the Revolutionary War), and his daughter Jane, who married John Kercheval. Thomas left part of his land in Mason County to Peggy and Jane.

[17] Pension file of Rankins, Robert No. W26365 or Rankin, Peggy B.L.Wt. 1380-200, images of originals available from Fold3.com at Ancestry. Peggy (Berry) Rankin’s declaration dated 16 Feb. 1844 states that she and Robert were married on Oct. 1, 1781 in Frederick County while he was on furlough after his capture at Charleston, they “having been previously engaged.” Peggy’s declaration is at pages 16-19 of their combined Fold3 file.

[18] Presumably, William would not have bothered to mention that Peggy also saw him march off to war. By 1833, she and Robert no longer lived in Mason County and Peggy wasn’t available to provide confirmation. Of course, my mental image of that event is pure speculation.

[19] Id.

[20] A “lease and release” was a two-step land transaction created to circumvent the English Statute of Uses. The two documents were typically executed on consecutive days. Together, they had the effect of a normal conveyance of land in fee simple.

[21] See Frederick Co., VA Deed Book 24A: 152, 155, lease and release (essentially a conveyance) dated 3 Nov 1792 from Fairfax, proprietor of the Northern Neck, to William Rankin of Frederick, 79 acres, part of the “Chestnut Level” in Frederick. Lease for the lives of William Rankin, wife Mary Ann Rankin, and son Harrison Rankin. One witness was Thomas Berry.

[22] William Rankin’s pension file, his declaration of 22 Nov. 1833.

[23] Mason Co., KY Will Book K: 448, inventory of William Rankin’s estate dated 4 June 1836.

[24] Mason Co., KY Will Book L: 538, Nov. 1839 current account of John L. Rankin and Robert P. Rankin, administrators of the account of William Rankin, dec’d.

[25] Deeds should provide evidence of  William’s land speculation and the identity of other family members who witnessed his deeds or were grantees. I haven’t had any luck in that regard.

[26] William Rankin’s pension file, letter dated 14 May 1927 from Winfield Scott, Commissioner of the Revolutionary and 1812 Wars (pension?) Section, to an inquiry about William’s record from Miss May Harrison. Scott’s reply noted William’s date of death and failure of his pension file to mention names of wife and children. See also a letter of 17 Sep 1931 responsive to a request about William from Mr. Walter H. Rankins stating the same facts.

[27] I cannot find a distribution in the Mason County will or court order books, which would provide conclusive proof of William’s heirs. Fortunately, I belatedly found a deed that does the trick, which is why I revised and re-published this post. See Mason Co., KY Deed Book 43: 65, deed from the nine heirs of William Rankin, dec’d, conveying his Mason County tract. 

[28] See Elizabeth Prather Ellsberry, Cemetery Records, Mason County, Kentucky, Vol. 1 (Chillicothe, MO: 1965). The contents of that book was the source for the Mason County Cemetery Index database on Ancestry.com.

[29] See Note 21, which should be the 1792 lease for life and & release.

[30] 1850 census, Scott Co., KY, dwelling 20, Harrison Rankin, 58, merchant, Betsey Rankin 48, KY, Martha Rankin 28, Elizabeth Rankin 22, Rufus Rankin 17, and Elizabeth Rankin 8; 1870 census, Georgetown, Scott Co., KY, dwelling 160, Harrison Rankin, 78, b. VA, $5,000/3,000, dry goods merchant, Elizabeth Rankin, 68 KY, Martha Rankin, 44 KY, Rufus Rankin, 35, KY, Lizzie Kenney, 28. Also listed in Harrison’s household: Paul Rankin, 46, doctor, b. KY. Underneath Paul’s name: William Rankin 20, Bettie Rankin 13, and Malvina Rankin 11.

[31] Mason Co., KY Will Book K: 448.

James Winn, Son of Daniel of Lunenburg: Lost but now Found? Probably …

REVISED TO INCORPORATE INFORMATION PROVIDED BY A DESCENDANT

I recently stumbled across online images of a Winn family Bible I had not seen before.[1] The Bible is from the family of James Winn, son of Daniel Winn of Lunenburg County, Virginia. James’s wife was Mary Ann Winn, daughter of John and Ann Stone Winn, also of Lunenburg. I wrote about James and Mary Ann briefly in Part IV of the recent Lunenburg Winn series.

What stands out about James in that article is his Revolutionary War service. He enlisted in February 1776 for two years in Capt. James Johnson’s company of the 6th Virginia Regiment, as did his brothers Elisha and William Winn.[2] He is shown on a Revolutionary War roll as a Sergeant in May 1777.[3] His individual service record lists him in Capt. Billey Haley Avery’s company of the 6th Virginia Regiment from August 1777 through January 1778. He was discharged in February 1778 at Valley Forge.[4] That catches most people’s attention, as well it should. And because today is November 11, I hereby send best wishes and gratitude to all veterans, including my husband Gary, a Vietnam vet, and (posthumously) to James Winn, a many-greats uncle of mine.

Back to the Winns: my article goes on to say that James probably left Lunenburg because there doesn’t seem to be a will or estate administration for him there. I added that I did not know where he went. In short, I just flat lost James and Mary Ann.

So … have we found James, son of Daniel, in this family Bible record? As a black plastic “Magic 8 Ball”[5] might say, “all signs point to ‘yes.’ ” For starters, the first members of the family recorded in the Bible are named James and Mary Ann Winn. The Bible says he was born in 1757. I had estimated that Daniel’s son James was born in 1757-1758, so the Bible’s birth year is spot on.

Also, several descendants of this family have been accepted by the D.A.R. on the basis of the Revolutionary War service of James Winn, son of Daniel Winn of Lunenburg. In short, there is every reason to accept that the James and Mary Ann Winn in the Bible record are the same people as James and Mary Ann Winn of Lunenburg.

But wait, there’s more … one descendant of James posted a comment on the original version of this article. She says the line has been Y-DNA tested and is well-established as part of the genetic family of Daniel Winn of Lunenburg. This blog has turned out to be a great way to meet nice cousins, and she is another one who is also a great researcher.

There is an “in memory of” marker for a James F. Winn in the Oakwood Cemetery in Martinsville, the county seat of Henry County, Virginia. Here it is:

Please note that the marker is fairly modern, perhaps mid 20th-century. The cemetery wasn’t founded until 1883, sixty-eight years after James died, so it is virtually certain that he was not buried there.[6]

A minor nitpick: the many Lunenburg records for James Winn, son of Daniel, never included a middle initial. The same is true for his military service records, which have his first and last names only, with no middle initial. There is no evidence of a middle name or initial in the Bible, either … he is simply James Winn. Nevertheless, the marker includes a middle initial, and most Ancestry trees identify him as “James Francis Winn.” Of course, people routinely include middle names for 18th-century men without any basis in the records, so this isn’t s a big surprise.

OK, back to the Bible. It was printed in 1833, roughly two decades after James and Mary Ann died. The family entries are in two parts.  First, there is a list of gifts of the Bible from one Winn family member to the next – i.e., the Bible’s ownership provenance. Four pages headed “Family Register” follow. Those pages record names, dates of birth, and some marriages for family members. I was reeling after reading both, and didn’t feel as though I had a handle on this family until I did a fair amount of additional research. May you have better luck.

Here, sans commentary, is a verbatim transcription of the family information. It begins with the provenance of the Bible and continues with the four pages of “Family Register” entries.

“This my fathers family Bible. I will to my niece Susie Winn Shute after my death it is to be hers. [Signed] Mary A. Thompson. April 30, 1895.”

“I give this Bible to my cousin Walter S. Winn & if he ________ [indecipherable] _______ William Winn. [Signed] Susie W. Shute.”

“I give this Bible to John T. Winn Jr. with the request that it be kept in the Winn family. Walter S. Winn, June 5th1920.”

“I give this Bible to William Edward Winn with the request that it be kept in the Winn family. Jan. 28, 1962, Charlotte, NC, John T. Winn Jr.”

“I give this Bible to Thomas Edward Winn with the request that it be kept in the Winn family. April 26, 2003, Charlotte, NC.”

Here is the first page headed “FAMILY REGISTER.” In the original Bible, the names are shown in two columns on each page. I couldn’t make that format work here. Sorry. It would be easier reading.

Column 1

James Winn was born April 14th 1757

Mary Ann was born 14th December 1759

Olive Winn was born January 28th 1779

Crecy Winn was born November 29th 1780

Archelaus Winn was born November 17th 1784

Younger Winn was born April 12th 1786

Frances Winn was born October 15th 1787

Coleman Winn was born June 30th 1789

Elizabeth Ann Winn was born June 15th 1791

Column 2

James Winn and Mary Ann Winn were married on the 15th of May 1778

Jerusha James Winn was born March 7th 1793

James Sibley Winn was born January 1st 1795

Arlysha Scott Winn and Clearecy Harloe Winn twin sisters were born February 4th 1797

Whitehead Washington Winn was born February 22nd 1799

Clarecy Harloe Winn died Sept 6th 1802

Mary Ann Winn the wife of James Winn died August 13th 1813

End of first page of the register. Here is the second page, also titled FAMILY REGISTER …

Column 1

James Winn died June 14th 1815

Mary Ann Winn his wife died August 13th 1813

Susanna Winn died Dec 16th 1864.

Archelaus W. Winn died April 13th 1868

Column 2

Calma C. Winn wife of Rev. G. W. Winn died Aug 4th 1893.

George Washington Winn died April 8, 1895

Livin A. Winn died May 16th 1892

Louisa Yourman? Winn died June 25th 1894

Mary Ann Winn Thompson died Oct 29 1905, the last of the old family

End of the second page. Here is the third page of the Family Register …

Column 1

Archelaus W. Winn was born Nov. 17th 1784

Susanna Ballanfant was born January 23rd 1789

Ebenezer P. Winn was born Aug 17th 1809

James Winn was b. June 26th 1812

John B. Winn Sept. 2nd 1814

Joseph B. Winn Dec. 6 1816

George W. Winn b. Jul 5th 1819

Mary Ann Winn Nov. 23, 1821

Column 2

Louisa Y. Winn 28 Apr 1824

Levin A. Winn 22 Mar 1826

William Alexander Winn Aug 29th 182? 1828?

Franklin L. P. Winn 20 May 1831

Mary Elizabeth Hoskins was b. 21 Dec 1837

F. L. P. Winn and M. E. Hoskins were married 1855

End of the third page of the register. Here is the fourth and final page …

Column 1

Joseph B. Winn died Jan 9th 1828

John B. Winn died Oct 23rd 1855

Ebenezer P. Winn d. 12 Jul 1863

John A. Thompson died Oct 21 1866

William A. Winn d. 12 Dec 1866

Silas D. Thompson d. Nov 8th 1882

Column 2

John Thompson Winn d. July 12, 1932, Bedford Co., TN, son of F.L.P. and M.E. Winn was born Mar 23, 1856.

Walter Salt? Winn son of Livin A. Winn and Marth A. Winn was b. July 2 1864

Emma Ellen Maxwell Winn wife of W. S. Winn was born Oct. 5, 1871

John A. Thompson and Mary A. Winn was married Aug 10th 1852

S.? D. Thompson and Mary A. Thompson m. Dec 13th 1870

E. L. Winn son of J. T. Winn Sr. was born Feb 16 1882

And that’s all of the family information in the Bible. If the spirit moves, I will prepare and post a conventional descendant chart for clarity, along with some additional information from census and other records.

See you on down the road.

Robin

[1] The Bible is online at the Library of Virginia at this link.

[2] James Winn’s military muster rolls at the National Archives can be viewed  at this link.

[3] Online at FamilySearch.org, United States Revolutionary War Rolls, 1775-1783: May 1777 muster roll, Sergeant James Winn and Corporal Elisha Winn in Capt. James Johnson’s company of the 6th Virginia Regiment, available here.

Id., Capt. Billy Haley Averys Company of the 6th Virginia Regiment, January 1778, Sergeant James Winn and Corporal Elisha Winn. NARA Series M246, Roll 103, online at this link.

[4] See Valley Forge Muster Roll Project here.

[5] Mattel still manufactures the Magic 8 Ball.

[6] Here is a link to the Find-a-Grave site for Oakwood Cemetery.

QUERY: (1) WHO WAS JOHN WINN d. AMELIA COUNTY 1781 and (2) WAS HE RELATED TO THE LUNENBURG WINNS?

— ANONYMOUS

Hooray! A query via email …

Answer #1: the circumstantial evidence is that Lt. Col. John Winn of Amelia County, Virginia (hereafter “Col. John”)[1] was a son of Richard Winn of Hanover County. Richard’s wife and perhaps John’s mother was Phebe, widow of a Mr. Pledger.

Answer #2: Yes, Amelia John was related to the Winn families of Lunenburg County.

Well. I suppose an explanation and some evidence is in order. Alternatively, we could avoid a lot of footnotes if readers would just accept my version of the facts as readily as people accept unsourced family trees on Ancestry.

No?

I thought not.

For Answer #1, we need to look at records involving Richard Winn of Hanover County. They establish that (1) Richard married Phebe ___ Pledger,[2] (2) he owned land in Amelia County, (3) he didn’t live in Amelia but paid taxes on some enslaved people there, and (4) Col. John subsequently acquired Richard’s tract and the enslaved people, evidently via inheritance.

(1) A 1733 Hanover County lease and release proves Richard Winn’s wife was Phebe, the widow of a Mr. Pledger.[3] We don’t know when Richard and Phebe married, so we can’t be certain that Phebe was the mother of Richard’s children.

(2) In 1744, Richard Winn of Hanover County bought 388 acres in Amelia County in the fork below the Little Nottoway River and Lazaritta Creek.[4] Richard had tithable (taxable) people on that tract in at least 1746, 1748, and 1749, even though he didn’t live in Amelia.[5] In 1749, John Wilke or Wilkes, perhaps Richard’s overseer, was one of his taxables. The two other taxable people with Wilkes were enslaved persons named Harry and Flowrey? The latter name is difficult to read on the film. Turns out it is “Flora,” perhaps pronounced “Flory,” see item (3).

(3) In 1751, the Amelia tax list includes an entry for John (rather than Richard) Winn, with taxables Joseph Wilkes, Harry, Flora, and Jean. Col. John Winn had apparently acquired the tract along with the enslaved people from Richard. There is no Amelia deed for any such purchase. That raises the inference that Col. John acquired the tract and enslaved people via inheritance. Records in Hanover are largely lost, so there is probably no will to be found there.

However, there is other evidence linking Col. John to Hanover. His eldest son Richard Winn[6]  was a Revolutionary War soldier whose widow Jane Pincham Winn applied for a pension for his service. Her application file includes the information that Richard’s father was Col. John Winn (identified by that title) who was born in Hanover County, Virginia.[7]

Other facts for the record … Col. John married Susanna Irby, daughter of Charles Irby Sr., in 1754.[8] John was probably born in the early 1720s and died in January 1781.[9] Col. John’s sister Susanna Winn married John Irby (Susanna Irby Winn’s brother) in 1757.[10] Are we dizzy yet? John and Susannah Winn Irby had children named Charles, Lucey, and John. Another sister, Phebe Winn, was the wife of Michael Holland.[11] The Winns and Irbys of Amelia County played a significant role in proving the Amelia-Lunenburg Winn family connection.

Which brings is to Answer #2, Col. John’s relationship to the Lunenburg Winn families.

The Winn DNA project results table does not include a group identified as descendants of Col. John Winn of Amelia. However, there is a group  designated “Richard Winn … m. Phebe Pledger, Hanover Co. VA.” If you accept that Col. John was a son of Richard of Hanover  with wife Phebe, then the Y-DNA evidence will convince you that Col. John shared a common Winn ancestor with Col. Thomas Winn, Daniel Winn, and John Winn (wife Ann Stone), all of Lunenburg.

Of course, Y-DNA doesn’t identify the nature of their relationships. However, there is compelling circumstantial paper evidence that Col. John of Amelia and Col. Thomas of Lunenburg were brothers. The evidence that Daniel Winn of Lunenberg was another brother is also convincing. I identify five people as children of Richard and (perhaps) Phebe Pledger Winn of Hanover, not necessarily in birth order:

Col. John Winn of Amelia (wife Susanna Irby, daughter of Charles Irby Sr.)

Col. Thomas Winn of Lunenburg (two wives, possibly Miss Bannister and perhaps Sarah Bacon)

Susanna Winn of Amelia (husband John Irby, son of Charles Irby Sr.)

Phebe Winn of Amelia (husband Michael Holland)

Daniel Winn of Lunenburg (wife Sarah, possibly Sarah Tench)

The key to the family relationship between Col. John and  Col. Thomas is Thomas’s Lunenburg will.[12]

Most importantly, Thomas named John Winn of Amelia (expressly described as “of Amelia”) an executor along with his wife Sarah, son William, and Lyddal Bacon. IMO, that is sufficient evidence standing alone that Col. Thomas and Col. John were siblings. The most loved, trusted, and capable members of the testator’s family were usually designated executors. Further, an out-of-county executor was not the norm, because he would necessarily have to travel to administer the estate. Col. Thomas surely named John of Amelia executor out of affection without any expectation that he would perform estate administration duties.

The witnesses to Col. Thomas’s will, who are traditionally also close family members, provide additional evidence that he and Col. John were siblings. Here are the people who witnessed Col. Thomas’s will:

… Members of the Amelia County Irby family, including Susannah Irby, Charles Irby, and Lucy Irby. Susannah was Susannah Winn Irby, proved sister of Col. John. Charles and Lucy Irby were Susannah’s children.[13] Keep in mind that the Irbys had to make a trip across the Nottoway to witness Col. Thomas’s will. One had to witness the will when and where the testator executed it.

… the Winn witnesses were John Winn Jr. and John Winn. As you know if you follow this blog, Lunenburg was awash with Winns named John. That means my opinion is ripe for second-guessing. Because Col. John Winn of Amelia was named executor, I believe that he and his son John Jr. were witnesses.[14]

I have saved the low-hanging (read: easy) fruit for last. Namely, whether Daniel Winn was also a sibling of Col. John, Col. Thomas, Susanna Winn Irby, and Phebe Winn Holland. I will refrain from reciting the many connections between Col. Thomas and Daniel in the Lunenburg deed records. Instead, I offer the following two items.

Naomi Giles Chadwick’s book, Winn – Daniel and His 9 Sons, states without any citation to county records that Col. Thomas testified in a deposition that Joseph Winn, son of Daniel, was his nephew. I haven’t found that deposition. If true, then Daniel Winn and Col. Thomas Winn were brothers.

There is one more will “factoid.” Joseph Winn and Elisha Winn, sons of Daniel Winn, witnessed Col. John Winn’s Amelia County will. All of the other witnesses (with the possible exception of Giles Nance) were Col. John’s close relatives. And, of course, Joseph and Elisha made the trip across the Nottoway to witness their Uncle John’s will.

With that, I’ll move on. More Winns are tugging at my sleeve.

See you on down the road.

Robin

[1] John Winn was commissioned a Lt. Col. in the Amelia County militia on 23 May 1771. Lloyd Bockstruck, Virginia’s Colonial Soldiers (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1988). My Air Force Academy graduate husband tells me that a Lieutenant Colonel is addressed as Colonel. I am doing that in this article.

[2] I am glossing over Phebe Winn’s maiden name in order to avoid a sidetrack into lengthy proof. I believe she was née Wilkes.

[3] Rosalie Edith Davis, Hanover County, Virginia Court Records 1733-1735: Deeds, Wills and Inventories (1979) 13-14, lease and release from Richard Winn and wife Phebe of Hanover to John Winn, 517 acres with a plantation on Chickahominy Swamp.

[4] Amelia Co., VA Deed Book 2: 82-83, lease and release from Stith Hardaway to Richard Winn of Hanover, 388 acres. The tract was then in Amelia but is now in Nottoway County, about 6 miles north of Effing Creek/Falls Creek/Hounds Creek where the Lunenburg Winns lived.

[5] FHL Film #1,902,616 has Amelia County tax lists including those for 1746, 1748, 1749, and 1751. Two of the tax lists identify his property as “Richard Winn list” or “Richard Wyn’s Quarter,” which means the taxpayer didn’t reside in the county.

[6] Amelia Co., VA Deed Book 15: 6, deed dated 24 Sep 1778 from John Winn of Amelia to his son Richard of same, for love and affection, 400 acres on the south side of John Winn’s mill pond, part of the tract belonging to the late Col. Irby adjacent John Winn and Charles Irby.

[7] Virgil D. White, Genealogical Abstracts of Revolutionary War Pension Files Vol. 4 (Waynesboro, TN: National Historical Publishing Co., 1992). Revolutionary War pension application No. W.6558 by Jane Pincham Winn, widow of Richard Winn, Virginia Line. View it here.. If it is correct that Col. John Winn was born in Hanover rather than a predecessor county, then he was born during or after 1721. Hanover was established in 1721 from part of New Kent County.

[8] My notes indicate that, years ago, Ann Avery Hunter somewhere (!?!) cited the accession number at the Virginia Archives for the marriage bond of John Winn and Susanna Irby, daughter of Charles Irby Sr. The bond was dated 4 Apr 1754. I cannot locate the accession number, nor can I recall where I found the reference. I nevertheless trust Ms. Hunter and my woefully incomplete notes on this fact.

[9] For Col. John’s birth date, see Note 7 saying that he was born in Hanover County. I estimated he was born after 1721 when Hanover was created but during the 1720s because he married in 1754, see Note 8. Colonial men (in my observation) typically married about age 25. His will was proved in January 1781, probably very soon after he died as was the norm. See Note 14.

[10] Amelia Co., VA Will Book 2X: 45, will of John Irby dated and proved in 1763. Executors wife Susannah Irby, “her brother John Winn,” and brother Charles Irby. Children Charles Irby, Lucey Irby, and John Irby. See also Kathleen Booth Williams, Marriages of Amelia County, Virginia 1735-1815 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1978, originally published Alexandria, VA, 1961), John Irby and Susanna Wynne married 29 Jan 1757, surety John Wynn.

[11] Amelia Co., VA Deed Book 8: 314, deposition of John Nance re Michael Holland’s gift of enslaved people to his children Mary and Joseph. Nance testified that Michael Holland’s wife (unnamed) wanted the gift recorded and asked Nance to have her “brother Winn” take care of it. Nance’s testimony proves only that Mrs. Holland was née Winn. However, Susannah Irby, a proved sister of Col. John, also testified on the gift issue. Id. at 315. Finally, Mrs. Holland’s given name was Phebe. Amelia Deed Book 14: 1774 deed from Pheby Holland, widow of Michael Holland, and his son Joseph and wife Mary to Medkip Tomson of Amelia. That combination of facts convinced me that Phebe Holland was Col. John’s sister.

[12] Lunenburg Will Book 3: 75, FamilySearch.org film #32,380, will of Thomas Winn dated 18 Sep 1779, proved 12 Apr 1781. Thomas named six of his eleven children in his will, see the  article about a chancery suit identifying all of his children.

[13] See Note 10.

[14] Col. John Winn had sons Richard, John, and Charles, and a daughter Jane Winn Epes. Amelia Co., VA Will Book 2: 360, will of Col. John Winn dated Mar 1780, proved Jan 1781. He named his wife Susanna (née Irby, daughter of Charles Irby Sr. and wife Susanna), sons Richard, John, and Charles, and daughter Jane Winn Epes. Executors were his wife, Truman Epes, and Charles Winn. Truman Epes was John’s son-in-law. Witnesses were Giles Nance, John Irby, William Gooch, Elisha Winn, Joseph Winn, and Jane Epes. I have long suspected that John Nance or Giles Nance married a Winn, but cannot prove it. John Irby’s wife was Susanna Winn Irby, sister of Col. John. William Gooch married Henrietta Maria Irby in Nov. 1769; Charles Irby testified that Henrietta was 21 and the daughter of Charles Irby Sr. Kathleen Booth Williams, Marriages of Amelia County, Virginia 1735-1815 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1978, originally published Alexandria, VA, 1961).

 

PART IV Addendum: a Friend Told Me Where Daniel Winn’s Son Thomas Migrated

I may start a regular “Query” feature. Readers would email questions about any line they found on this blog. I would assemble and publish them as often as appropriate. I know that queries here WORK: I recently published an article about Daniel Winn of Lunenburg and asked if anyone knew where his son Thomas Winn (possible wife Joyce) had migrated. I had a response within days from a descendant who has tracked Daniel’s line like Frank Hamer on the trail of Bonnie and Clyde: Daniel Winn’s son Thomas and his wife Joyce of Lunenburg went right next door to Brunswick County.

I must blush. I immediately opened my document containing Brunswick records, and there, big as Dallas, was Thomas’s will naming his wife Joyce and his brother Joseph as executor. I should have been able to find that in my own dang research.

Below is an image of a transcription of the will. More blushing and forelock tugging is appropriate. I did all my Southside Virginia research very early on, when I didn’t know what the heck I was doing. Consequently, I have no idea what the source of this transcription might be. All I know is that I found it in the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, and that it is on page 36 of some book. Worse, I cannot find the will among the microfilm of Brunswick probate records available online. If that makes you entertain doubts about its authenticity, can’t say that I blame you.

For what it’s worth, here ‘tis. And that is all I know about Daniel Winn’s son Thomas and his wife Joyce of Lunenburg and then Brunswick Counties, Virginia … and their children Buckner Winn, Caty Winn Laffoon, Martitia Winn Bishop, Robert Winn, Oratio Winn, Freeman Winn, Marian J. Winn, and Betsy Winn.

See you on down the road. Another Frank Hamer type sent an email about another son of Daniel. I need to investigate to see if I have equally nebulous evidence about him.

Robin

PART IV of ?? John Winn Sr. of Lunenburg Who Died in 1795.

In Part I of ?? of the Lunenburg Winn series, I promised articles about three Lunenburg Winn patriarchs – Col. Thomas Winn, Daniel Winn, and the John Winn who died in 1795. I discussed Col. Thomas in Parts I and Part III. Daniel Winn was the topic of Part II. Relative to those others, this article is short and sweet. If you already have even cursory knowledge of John Winn’s family, this may be a yawner.

There are several reasons John is getting short shrift. First, I don’t know much about him because he was not the focus of my Lunenburg research. Col. Thomas and Daniel are my ancestors; anything I learned about John while researching them was collateral, so to speak (oooh, bad pun!). Second, I don’t want to get up the learning curve on John because there are several ideas for fun Winn articles bouncing around in my skull. The squeaky wheel gets the research effort, and John isn’t making any noise. Third, there are countless Winn researchers out there who already know everything worthwhile to know about John. I have nothing to offer except a few bare facts. That’s fine for people like me who just want to know how John’s family fits in the overall Winn picture.

I cannot answer even that much about John. I have no idea who his parents were, or where he came from before he lived in Lunenburg. A reasonable guess is that his family was from Hanover County. That guess runs counter to online trees I have seen, which attach John to the line of Speaker Robert Wynne and his wife Mary Sloman Poythress Wynne of Charles City, Prince George, and Surry Counties.

Those trees are fighting a losing battle against Y-DNA. If I am counting and comparing markers correctly (this is a genuine issue and I may well have goofed), the John Winn who married Ann Stone is a hopeless mismatch with Speaker Robert’s line. Only one descendant of John and Ann has tested on more than twelve markers. Comparing his results to the modal values for Speaker Robert’s descendants, there are 15 mismatches on 37 markers. The Winn DNA project puts John in the same genetic family as Col. Thomas Winn and Daniel Winn of Lunenburg.

I don’t know how John is related to the other two men. The three were not brothers, a topic of another potential article. Someone who has researched John thoroughly may know the answer, and will perhaps let us know. All I know is that John is connected to Col. Thomas and Daniel in the Lunenburg records, primarily in land transactions. The only  close connections are that John and Ann Stone Winn’s daughter Mary Ann Winn married James Winn, probably a son of Daniel. Also, John and Ann’s daughter Jane (“Jincy”) married first Richard Stone and then Alexander Winn, another son of Daniel.

So far as I know, John first appeared in the Lunenburg records in 1740. He patented 314 acres that year in what is now Lunenburg on a famous watercourse renamed, with a heavy dose of irony, from “Effing Creek” to Modest Creek.[1] Daniel and Col. Thomas also owned land there. John frequently appeared in deed records with the other two men, e.g., John witnessed a deed along with John and Richard Stone from Samuel Wynne to Col. Thomas Winn of Hanover conveying 150 acres on Modest Creek.[2] Significantly, Col. Thomas conveyed 762 acres on Modest and Fall’s Creek to John in 1762 at a very favorable price.[3]

John’s wife Ann Stone was a daughter of John Stone.[4] They were married by at least May 1755, when she was a grantor in a deed along with John.[5] He reportedly had a wife prior to Ann Stone, although I have not seen any evidence on that issue.

John’s will named ten children.[6] Here are the barest of bare facts about them, to the extent I know anything at all.

John Winn (Jr.). was born by at least 1744.[7] His father gave him 381 acres on Modest Creek in 1765. John and his wife Mary sold that tract in 1775 and[8] may have moved to Mecklenburg County soon thereafter.[9]

Peter Winn bought 381 acres from his brother John Jr. in 1779. He was shown each year on the Lunenburg land tax lists from 1787 through 1807. He had died by April 1808, when his estate was appraised.[10] Like most of the Lunenburg Winns, he was a wealthy and literate man.[11] The only children I have identified are sons Peter Winn and Archer Winn, both minors in September 1809.[12]

Lucretia Winn. Her father’s will identified her surname as Hundley. According to Anne Bassett Stanley Chatham, Tidewater Families of the New World (Tollhouse, CA: Historical Publications, Inc., 1996), Lucretia was born 23 Feb 1753. Her husband was William Hundley Sr., born in Amelia County and died in Mecklenburg County.[13]

Little Beary or Littleberry Winn. He married Mary Maynard in 1783 in Mecklenburg. The couple were living there in 1800 when he sold his inherited tract to his brother Peter.[14]

Morning Winn (sic, probably Mourning, a male). I have no information about him.

Mary Ann Winn married some James Winn of Lunenburg, probably a son of Daniel Winn. I wrote in Part II of the Lunenburg Winns that James had difficulty managing money. The couple probably left Lunenburg. They are the subject of one of the fun Winn articles I have in the queue. Please stay tuned.

Jincy Winn Stone became Jincy Winn Stone Winn after her husband Richard Stone died. See Part II of the Lunenburg Winns about Alexander Winn, son of Daniel, her second husband.

Jerusha Winn Gunn. Jerusha married Daniel Gunn Jr. of Lunenburg in 1786.

Elizabeth Winn Allen. I know nothing about her.

Millinder Winn Stone. Ditto.

 As I predicted, this was short shrift for John and Ann Stone Winn. They undoubtedly deserved much better, but c‘est la vie. Now to convince one of the potential Winn articles knocking around my head to become the primary squeaky wheel …

See you on down the road.

Robin

[1] Cavaliers and Pioneers Volume IV 236; Virginia Patent Book 18: 883. John Winn patented another 230 acres on Modest Cr. in 1746. The old deeds and patent books apparently had no qualms about calling it F**king Cr. before it was renamed.

[2] Deed Book 1: 71. See also Deed Book 7: 227, John Winn and wife Ann to John Stone, 230 acres on Modest Cr. witnessed by John Winn, Thomas Winn, and Daniel Winn. That was the same day as a conveyance from Col. Thomas to Lunenburg John, 762 acres on Modest Cr., Deed Book 7: 231. Note: all citations to record books in this article are Lunenburg Deed, Will, and Order books unless expressly identified otherwise.

[3] Deed Book 7: 231, deed dated 8 Apr 1762 from Thomas Winn to John Winn for £20, 762 acres on the  South side of F**king Cr. in the fork of Fall’s Creek adjacent Irby, Evans, grantor, et al. Witnesses John Winn, Daniel Winn, John Winn.

[4] Mecklenburg Co., VA Will Book 3: 243, will of John Stone dated and proved 1782 naming among others his child Anne Wynne.

[5] Deed Book 4: 162, deed dated 17 May 1755 from John Winn and wife Ann of Lunenburg witnessed by Melania or Melinia Winn, who proved the deed.

[6] Will Book 4: 83b-84, will of John Winn of Cumberland Parish, Lunenburg, dated 17 Aug 1793 proved 12 Feb 1795. Wife Ann. Children John Winn, Peter Winn, Lucretia Hundley, Little Beary (also Littleberry) Winn, Morning Winn (son), Mary Ann Winn, Jincey Stone, Jerusha Gunn, Elizabeth Allen, and Millinder Stone. Executors John Winn, Peter Winn, and William Hundley.

[7] Deed Book 10: 165, gift deed dated 1765 from John Winn Sr. “the elder” to John Jr., 381 acres for love and affection and 5 shillings, 381 acres on F**king Cr. adjacent William Stone.

[8] Deed Book 12: 435, deed dated 12 Jan 1775 from John and Mary Winn. She is not mentioned in the deed, but the deed book index names her as a grantor along with John.

[9] Mecklenburg Deed Book 5: 46, deed dated 12 May 1777 from John Winn of Mecklenburg to John Stone Sr. of Same, John’s wife Mary relinquished dower.

[10] Will Book 6: 234, 1808 appraisal of the estate of Peter Winn, £641.10.5.

[11] Will Book 6: 234a, 1808 inventory and appraisal of the estate of Peter Winn. The estate included 8 enslaved persons, a black walnut desk and table, and other personalty. Books included Burket on the Old Testament, a large Bible, the Buchun family physician, Gutheries Grammer, and unidentified others.

[12] Lunenburg Guardian Accounts, 8 Sep 1808  account of Charles Betts, guardian of Peter and Archer Winn, orphans of Peter Winn, dec’d.

[13] Tidewater Families lists Lucretia Winn Hundley’s children as (1) Willis Hundley, b 3 Nov 1777, Mecklenburg, died 1816, (2) Nancy Hundley, born 18 Dec 1779, (3) William Hundley, Jr., born 30 Jan 1783, Mecklenburg, may have married Mary Stone 3 Dec   1805, Lunenburg, (4) Lucretia Hundley (Jr.), born 18 May 1785 in Mecklenburg, (5) Patty C. Hundley, born 18 Feb 1787 Mecklenburg, died 6 Apr1816, may have married Peter Winn on 7 July1810, (6) Jennie Hundley born 25 Jan 1789, and (7) John Hundley born 16 Dec 1792 Mecklenburg, died 15 Feb 1834, New Orleans, LA. Lucretia Winn Hundley and her children reportedly moved to Sumner County, TN in 1810. I have not verified any of that information.

[14] Deed Book 18: 217, 13 Apr 1800, Littleberry Winn and wife Mary of Mecklenburg to Peter Winn of Lunenburg, £165 for 248A. The will of John Winn, dec’d  gave the land and plantation where John Winn lived to Littleberry. This deed conveys the upper part of John Winn’s land to Peter.

Part III of ?? How Many Times Was Col. Thomas Winn Married?

(OR MORE THAN YOU WANT TO KNOW ABOUT INTESTATE DESCENT & DISTRIBUTION)

My recent article about Col. Thomas Winn of Lunenburg County, Virginia (circa 1718 – 1781) may have been unclear about that question.[1] The answer: Thomas was married more than once. More importantly, Thomas had children by more than one wife. A Lunenburg chancery lawsuit concerning the estate of his son Washington Winn makes it abso-effing-lutely impossible to conclude otherwise. This might be important to some, because a legion of people claim Col. Thomas as an ancestor.

Perhaps the only way to set the record straight on this issue is by analyzing the chancery lawsuit orders. But first, let’s flesh out the bottom line …

Col. Thomas had seven children by his first wife (or wives).  Their mother is unproved but she is traditionally identified as Elizabeth Bannister.

  1. MOURNING
  2. ELIZABETH
  3. THOMAS
  4. RICHARD
  5. WILLIAM
  6. BANNISTER
  7. JOHN, who predeceased Col. Thomas

Col. Thomas Winn’s widow, who was at least his second wife, was named Sarah. Her maiden name is also unproved, although she is often identified as Sarah Bacon. Sarah and Thomas had four children who survived him:

  1. KETURAH
  2. HENRIETTA MARIA (or MARIE)
  3. EDMUND
  4. WASHINGTON

Proving these children is not easy. If you don’t wish to hear how the law of intestate descent and distribution in late 18th century Virginia treated siblings and half-siblings, or why a married woman was not allowed to appear as a party to a lawsuit on her own and how that matters in this case … and if you have no desire to dissect just the style of a lawsuit for family information, and also scrutinize the court’s distribution of estate assets for more family information … for heaven’s sake, people, quit reading NOW!! Otherwise, grab a cup of coffee or an adult beverage and pull up a chair. Anyone who makes it all the way to the end will receive a suitable reward to be announced later.

Before we start, it is important to know that Washington Winn, whose estate was the subject of the chancery lawsuit, was a son of Col. Thomas Winn. See Lunenburg Will Book 3: 75, FamilySearch.org Film #32,380 (will of Thomas Winn proved 1781 named his underage son Washington Winn).

Some law and why it is important for figuring out Col. Thomas Winn’s family

First, the easy part: legal issues. This discussion is largely based on personal knowledge. I will spare you and myself citations to  Hening’s Statutes at Large. I will try to explain why this legal esoterica is important to identifying the family of Col. Thomas.

  • Coverture is “the condition or state of a married woman … [sometimes used] … to describe the legal disability which formerly existed from a state of coverture.” Black’s Law Dictionary, from a very ancient edition I acquired during law school. What it means is that a married woman had no legal rights of her own because she had no legal existence apart from her husband. Thus, a married woman could not be a party to a lawsuit on her own behalf. Her husband had to be a party to assert her rights and to receive her award, if any. On the other hand, when a lawsuit involved a married man, there was no need to include his wife as a party. She just.didn’t.matter, to mangle a famous Bill Murray line.

Why is coverture important to the family of Col. Thomas? Because understanding it proves that Elizabeth Winn and Mourning Hix were his daughters. It also tells us that Elizabeth’s husband was Joseph Winn, who was a son of Daniel Winn, not Col. Thomas. The chancery lawsuit is the only evidence of the identity of Joseph Winn’s wife that I have found.

  • Style of a case. “Style” refers to the title of a lawsuit, so to speak. For example, Marbury v. Madison. The style of the Winn chancery suit is not easy to decipher. That is because it is very, very long and the clerk of court wrote it differently in two separate court orders. He also made an error or two. But deciphering the style of the Lunenburg chancery case is essential to identifying members of this Winn family.
  • The law of intestate descent and distribution. “Intestate” as a noun means a person who died without a will. If a deceased person left a valid will, the estate is distributed according to provisions of the will. Period. If there is no valid will, then the decedent’s estate is distributed according to the applicable statute of intestate descent and distribution. Every state has such a statute (although I can’t speak for Louisiana, which is its own form of crazy). Here is what the chancery suit reflects about the Virginia law at the time:
    • If a person owning an estate died intestate without a wife or children, his estate was distributed to his siblings and a surviving parent. This is important because it tells us that Washington Winn had no wife or children and he died intestate. His estate would therefore be distributed  “according to the statute,” as the court said. Washington’s mother Sarah also received a “child’s share” of his personal property, although we aren’t concerned about that here. The important thing is that Washington’s estate distribution revealed the identities of the other children of Col. Thomas – and Washington’s relationship to each one. 
    • Half-sisters and half-brothers were called “siblings of the half-blood” by the Lunenburg court. By law, each received half as much of the distribution amount paid to a “sibling of the whole blood.” The amount distributed to each sibling thus tells us whether he or she was a half sibling or a full sibling. The court’s order proves that Washington had siblings of both the half-blood and the whole blood. His siblings of the whole blood had the same mother as Washington, namely Sarah, Col. Thomas’s widow. His siblings of the half-blood had a different mother than Washington. Thus, Col. Thomas necessarily had a wife (or wives) before he married Sarah, by whom he had children who survived him.
    • If a sibling (claimant) of an intestate has died, his share was divided among his children, if any. If he had no children, then his share went to his surviving siblings.

The lawsuit

At this point, we have no alternative except to dive into the court’s orders in the lawsuit. These were difficult for me to grasp, and I like to think I have had some decent experience in the law. I nevertheless had to read the orders several times before I began to comprehend them. That also makes them difficult for me to explain, so the explanation may induce “MEGO” (“my eyes glazed over”). If so, I understand and sympathize.

The court clerk recorded two slightly different versions of the style of the suit. See Lunenburg Order Book 17 at 134 (order of 12 Nov 1796) and at 292-293 (order of 10 Nov 1797) (FamilySearch.org, Lunenburg Order Books 1796 – 1805, Film #32,410, image 113 and image 192 et seq.)

Here is the style in the 1796 order. The silly colors make it easier to discuss each group.

John Hix and Mourning his wife, Joseph Winn and Elizabeth his wife, Thomas Winn, Richard Winn, William Winn and Banister Winn, Children and Coheirs of Thomas Winn, dec’d, and Harrison Winn, Beasley Heart and Elizabeth his wife, and John Winn, children and legal representatives of John Winn, decd, who was the son of the last mentioned Thomas Winn, dec’d, and Susanna Bacon, Sarah Bacon, Lyddal Bacon, and Thomas Winn Bacon, infants, by Edward P. Bacon their guardian and Keturah Hardy, Armstead Hardy, Sally Hardy, Edmund Hardy, and Jeane Hardy, by Alexander Winn, Gentleman, their next friend,

Complainants in Chancery,

v.

Edmund Winn, administrator of Washington Winn, dec’d, and Sarah Winn,

 Defendants.

And here is the style in the 1797 order.

Mourning Hix, wife of John Hix, dec’d, Joseph Winn and Elizabeth his wife, Thomas Winn, Richard Winn [William Winn’s name omitted here] & Bannister Winn, Children and Coheirs of Thomas Winn, dec’d, Harrison Winn, Beasley Heart & Elizabeth his wife, and John Winn, children and legal representatives of John Winn, dec’d, who was son of the last mentioned Thomas Winn, Susanna Bacon, Sarah Bacon, Lyddall Bacon & Thomas Winn Bacon, by Edmund P. Bacon their next friend, William Winn [William is moved here from the first group] & John Hardys children by Alexander Winn, Gent., their next friend

 Complainants in Chancery,

v. 

Edmund Winn Administrator of Washington Winn, dec’d, and Sarah Winn,

 Defendants.

Might be time for a refill on that adult beverage.

Let’s start with the parties listed in red. They are described as “children and coheirs of Thomas Winn, dec’d.” Thomas is Col. Thomas. An early Winn researcher transcribed “COHEIRS” as “COUSINS.” This is an understandable mistake because the handwriting is small and cramped, but it will drive you nuts if you try to make sense of the relationships among all the parties on that basis. I stared closely at the original in the Lunenburg courthouse. It is “coheirs,” I promise, not “cousins.”

First, notice the four men separated by commas at the end of the red group: Thomas (Jr.), Richard, William and Bannister. They are obviously children of Col. Thomas because that is how they are expressly described. Because men had legal rights of their own, there was no need to name their wives as parties.

Now consider coverture, and notice “John Hix and Mourning his wife” in the first order in the red “children and coheirs” group. John Hix was obviously not Col. Thomas Winn’s child, so Mourning must be his daughter. Her husband John had to be named as a party, though, because … Mourning had no legal existence or rights apart from him.

Also, we already knew from Lunenburg Winns: Part I  that John Hix was Col. Thomas’s son-in-law and Mourning was a daughter. That’s how Col. Thomas identified the couple in his will. See Lunenburg Will Book 3: 75, FamilySearch.org Film #32,380 (will of Thomas Winn proved 1781, naming his son-in-law John Hix and wife Mourning Hix). John had died by the second order, making Mourning a single woman. She was therefore no longer subject to a married woman’s legal disability of coverture and could be named as a party in her own right, as “Mourning Hix, wife of John Hix, dec’d.”

The remaining names in the red group are Joseph Winn and Elizabeth his wife. They are confusing because they are both Winns. Consider coverture again. If Joseph had been a son of Thomas Winn and was asserting rights to his brother Washington’s estate, his wife Elizabeth wouldn’t be named. Thus, Elizabeth, not Joseph, was a child of Col. Thomas. Joseph was her husband — who had to be joined as a party to the lawsuit because she had no legal rights except through him.

The only hiccup in the red group list is William, who migrated locations in the style from the first order to the second. He is included in the red group in the first record, but the clerk forgot him for a while in the second order … and stuck his name in between the blue group and the magenta group. I can sympathize with the clerk. All those names, and think how tedious all that copying must have been.

The red group proves these six children of Col. Thomas:

  1. Mourning Winn, wife/widow of John Hix
  2. Elizabeth Winn, wife of Joseph Winn
  3. Thomas Winn
  4. Richard Winn
  5. William Winn
  6. Bannister Winn

The next group, shown in green, is identified as “children and legal representatives of John Winn, dec’d, who was the son of … Thomas Winn, dec’d” (still Col. Thomas). We already know from Part I  that Col. Thomas had a son John who predeceased his father. John died in 1768 leaving a will naming his children Harrison, Betty (a nickname for Elizabeth), and an unborn child. See Lunenburg Will Book 2: 326 (will of John Winn of Lunenburg dated and proved in 1768, naming children Harrison, Betty, and a child “wife Susannah is now big with,” and appointing his father Thomas as one of his executors).

This lawsuit nicely identifies for us the name of Betty/Elizabeth’s husband, Beasley Heart, and the name of the unborn child. Not surprisingly, John’s afterborn son was also named John.

This adds another name to the list of children of Col. Thomas:

  1. John Winn (who had children Harrison, Elizabeth [“Betty”] married Beasley Heart, and John).

Moving on to the blue group. The differences in the two versions of the style are not significant. The only substantive error the clerk made in the first version is that the Bacon children’s guardian should be Edmund P. Bacon, not Edward.

Susanna Bacon, Sarah Bacon, Lyddal Bacon, and Thomas Winn Bacon, infants, by Edward P. Bacon their guardian, in the first version, or

Susanna Bacon, Sarah Bacon, Lyddall Bacon & Thomas Winn Bacon, by Edmund P. Bacon their next friend.

These children, like Harrison Winn, Elizabeth Heart, and John Winn in the green group, were grandchildren of Col. Thomas. Because their surname was Bacon, they were obviously the children of a daughter of Col. Thomas who married (presumably) Edmund Bacon. She was dead by the time the lawsuit was filed, or she and her husband would have appeared in the “red” group and their children would not have been named.

The magenta group poses the same situation. A daughter of Col. Thomas married John Hardy and has died, leaving children. Had she been alive, she had John Hardy would have been listed in the “red” group and the names of their children omitted. Here is how they are identified in the two versions of the style:

Keturah Hardy, Armstead Hardy, Sally Hardy, Edmund Hardy, and Jeane Hardy, by Alexander Winn, Gentleman, their next friend, in the first version,

or

 John Hardys children by Alexander Winn, Gent., their next friend.

FYI, Alexander Winn was just the legal representative of the Hardy children, not their guardian or a parent. He was a justice of the Lunenburg court, making him a good choice to be the Hardy children’s advocate.

Here are the eighth and ninth children of Col. Thomas: 

  1. _________ Winn Bacon, wife of Edmund P. Bacon
  2. _________ Winn Hardy, wife of John Hardy

And here are the remaining two children of the eleven who survived Col. Thomas:

  1. Washington Winn, the deceased son whose estate is the subject of the lawsuit; and
  2. Edmund Winn, administrator of Washington’s estate.

The last four (children #8 through #11) are identified in Col. Thomas’s will. He named his daughters Keturah and Henrietta Maria, not yet married when he wrote the will, and his sons Edmund and Washington.

We are down to two remaining questions: (1) which daughter married a Bacon and which married John Hardy; and (2) which of the children were Washington’s siblings of the whole blood, and which were Washington’s siblings of the half blood?

The order book muddies the answers to the first question. In the first order, I believe the clerk reversed the daughters’ surnames and entered this: “children of representatives of Keturah Bacon and Henrietta Hardy, deceased …” In the second order, the clerk entered, “to the children of Keturah Bacon, dec’d…” and “to the children of Keturah Hardy, dec’d,” erroneously using the same given name twice.

Both orders are probably wrong. In the original order book, someone struck out the Bacon entry “Keturah” in the second order and penciled in “Henrietta.” I believe the person who defaced the order book was correct … Henrietta Maria was the mother of the Bacon children and Keturah was the mother of the Hardy children. But I cannot find the evidence and I’m not certain! Can anyone help me out on that issue?

The last remaining question is the easiest. The second order details the amounts to be distributed to each party. It says this:

To Mourning Hix of the half blood £48.14.10

To Joseph Winn of the half blood ditto (recall Joseph was the husband of Elizabeth and therefore received her share)

To Thomas Winn of the half blood ditto

To Richard Winn of the half blood ditto

To William Winn of the half blood ditto

To Bannister Winn of the half blood ditto

To Harrison Winn, Beasly Hart & Elizabeth his wife and John Winn, heirs of John Winn, dec’d, son of Thomas Winn, dec’d, £48.14.10

The court doesn’t expressly describe John Winn, dec’d, son of Col. Thomas, as Washington’s sibling of the half blood, but the amount of the distribution (the same as the other half-siblings) proves it.

Tying a neat bow around the status of each sibling (ignoring the question of which daughter married a Bacon vs. a Hardy), the court record says:

To the children of Keturah [Keturah is struck out in pencil and “Henrietta” written in] Bacon, dec’d, Susanna Bacon, Sarah Bacon, Lyddall Bacon, Thomas Winn Bacon, of the whole blood, £123.9.8 

To the children of Keturah Hardy, dec’d, Keturah Hardy, Ann Hardy, Sally Hardy, Edmund Hardy & Jeane Hardy of the whole blood, £123.9.8 

to Edmund Winn his part £123.9.8 

The court doesn’t expressly state Edmund’s status as Washington’s sibling of the whole blood, but the amount of his distribution again proves the relationship.

In the final analysis, here is what the chancery case proves regarding the children of Col. Thomas:

Seven children were Washington’s siblings of the half blood and were children of Col. Thomas’s wife (or wives) prior to Sarah:

  1. MOURNING
  2. ELIZABETH
  3. THOMAS
  4. RICHARD
  5. WILLIAM
  6. BANNISTER
  7. JOHN

The siblings of the whole blood, who were children of Washington’s mother Sarah, were:

  1. KETURAH
  2. HENRIETTA MARIA (or MARIE)
  3. EDMUND
  4. WASHINGTON

Did anyone make it this far without experiencing MEGO? If so, are we clear, Col. Jessup? Answer (I hope): “Crystal.”

If not, I’m going to have to ask someone else to give it the ol’ college try. I’m tuckered out.

See you on down the road.

Robin

[1] I say that my prior article (Part I of ???) may have been unclear because a friend emailed to me a link to a website that cited this blog as a source. In fact, the website cited that specific article, which was primarily about Col. Thomas Winn. Among other things, the article identified his eleven children and their probable mothers. But the person citing my article as a source totally botched that family. Since that may have been caused by my lack of clarity, I figured I’d better try to explain it better.

Lunenburg Winns, Part II of ? – Daniel Winn

I considered retitling this series “Tangled Roots and Branches.” That would merit a D-minus for originality, since probably 25% of all family histories use some version of that metaphor. We’ll stick to the uninspiring “Part II” instead.

Part I identified three Lunenburg Winn patriarchs. It discussed one of them, Col. Thomas, and a persistent myth concerning the Lunenburg Winns.[1] Here is a brief recap.

Col. Thomas Winn and Daniel Winn of Lunenburg were two of the Winn patriarchs of Lunenburg. They were brothers. Their father was Richard Winn of Hanover County, whose wife was Phoebe Wilkes Pledger. The third patriarch, John Winn of Lunenburg, was genetically related to Col. Thomas and Daniel. Putting it another way, the three men shared an unknown male Winn ancestor. I haven’t figured out their precise relationship – they are presumably cousins of some stripe. None of the three men were descended from or genetically related to Speaker Robert Wynne and his wife Mary Sloman Poythress Wynne of Charles City/Prince George Counties. Y-DNA testing establishes that descendants of the Lunenburg Winns do not match descendants of Speaker Robert.

Col. Thomas (born circa 1718, died in 1781) was a wealthy landowner who lived a high-profile public life in Lunenburg. He was married at least twice. First, perhaps, to Elizabeth Bannister then, probably, to Sarah Bacon, who survived him.

Col. Thomas had eleven surviving children, seven by his first wife and four by Sarah. They were (birth order unknown) (1) Bannister, (2) Elizabeth, (3) Thomas Jr., (4) Richard, (5) William, (6) John, and (7) Mourning (by his first wife), and (8) Henrietta Maria/Marie, (9) Edmund, (10), Ketturah, and (11) Washington (by Sarah).

Moving on to new territory, here is …

Patriarch #2: Daniel Winn, born circa 1720, died in 1799

Daniel first appeared in county records witnessing a 1744 Surry County deed.[2] That date establishes he was born by at least 1723, placing him in the same generation as Col. Thomas. The first two Lunenburg county records concerning Daniel were 1752 and 1754 deeds executed when he resided in Prince George County.[3]

Daniel was a Lieutenant in the Lunenburg militia.[4] Like his brother Col. Thomas, he was a wealthy landowner. By 1763, he had acquired about 2,000 acres in Lunenburg.[5] He built a grist mill on Great Hounds Creek at “the main falls” which he and his son Joseph sold in 1780.[6]

The military service of some of his sons may be Daniel’s greatest claim to fame. Six of his nine sons were Revolutionary War soldiers.[7] Three of them – Elisha, William and James Winn  – enlisted in February 1776 in the same company in the 6th Virginia Regiment. At minimum, the three were in the battles of Trenton in December 1776 and Princeton in January 1777, and probably others as well.[8] James and Elisha were discharged in February 1778 while at Valley Forge.[9] Three other brothers – Joseph, John, and Galanus Winn – fought at the 1779 Battle of Stono Ferry near Charleston, South Carolina in the militia company commanded by Joseph.[10]

Daniel’s will did not name a wife, who evidently predeceased him. She may have been Sarah Tench, daughter of Henry Tench.[11] As of 1768, Daniel’s wife was definitely named Sarah.[12]

Daniel distributed considerable wealth to his children. The only child named in his will was Joseph, who inherited Daniel’s remaining estate. Six of his other nine children are proved by gift deeds. Most of the deeds recite that the consideration was “natural love, goodwill, and affection” for the grantee, who is usually specifically identified as Daniel’s son or daughter. The identities of Daniel’s sons are also indicated by their appearances as tithables (i.e., taxable people) on his personal property tax lists.

Here are Daniel’s children. Their birth years are estimates, except for Galanus, whose birth date is proved by his Revolutionary War pension application. I have listed the sons in the order they appeared as Daniel’s tithable on a tax list, a reasonable proxy for birth order.

  1. Marticia/Martisha Winn was probably born between 1741 and 1746. Her husband Cornelius Crenshaw (son of Joseph) was from an Amelia County family. The Amelia Crenshaws lived in the same tax district where Richard Winn’s Amelia County property was taxed (he lived in Hanover).[13] The Winn and Crenshaw families likely knew each other well before any of them arrived in Lunenburg.

Marticia was the first of Daniel’s children proved by a gift deed reciting “natural love and affection.”[14] She and Cornelius had five children.[15] After he died, Marticia married James Jennings on 18 Dec 1787.[16]They had six children, including five having names of her brothers.[17]

  1. Thomas Winn was probably born by 1744.[18] He is proved as Daniel’s son by a 1765 gift of 300 acres on Little Hounds Creek.[19] He last appeared on a Lunenburg tax list in 1788. He may be the Thomas Winn with a wife named Joyce who sold a tract on Little Hounds Creek that year. Orsamus Winn, another son of Daniel, witnessed the conveyance.[20] I found no Lunenburg will or estate administration for Thomas, suggesting he moved away. I hope someone reading this knows where he went and will post a comment.

Naomi Giles Chadwick’s book, Winn – Daniel and His 9 Sons, confuses Daniel’s son Thomas with Col. Thomas. Ms. Chadwick cites the book Lost Links to identify Thomas Winn, son of Daniel, as the same man as his uncle Col. Thomas.[21] The mistake is obvious because Daniel’s son Thomas continued appearing on Lunenburg tax lists after Col. Thomas died in 1781. It’s the old “same name confusion” error. We’ve all done it. If you have not, you just haven’t been doing genealogy long enough.

  1. Joseph Winn was born about 1746-1748 and died in Lunenburg in 1800.[22] His wife was Elizabeth Winn, a daughter of Col. Thomas. Joseph identified nine children in his will.[23] For the most part, Joseph stayed out of the records. He was a Justice of the County Court. His service as a Captain in the Revolutionary War is proved by the pension applications of his brothers Elisha and Galanus Winn, plus applications by Richard Bacon[24] and Henry Cook.[25] Joseph’s militia company was in the 1779 Battle of Stono Ferry, South Carolina, near Charleston. I am not aware of other engagements.
  2. John Winn was born about 1747-1748.[26] I found no conveyance to him from Daniel reciting love and affection or identifying him as a son. However, Daniel and his wife Sarah conveyed 300 acres to some John Winn in July 1768.[27] The grantee was probably Daniel’s son John because Joseph and Thomas Jr., sons of Daniel, witnessed the deed, and the acreage was the same as gifts to Thomas Jr. and Elisha. John was a Lieutenant in the Revolutionary War. He served in the militia company commanded by his brother Joseph that was at the Battle of Stono Ferry.[28]

There were a plethora of John Winns in Lunenburg.[29] I am frankly not certain I have correctly sorted them all out. However, I believe that Daniel’s son John Winn died in 1821, leaving a will naming his wife Susannah, two sons, a daughter, and two grandsons.[30]

  1. Elisha Winn was born between 1749 and 1753, based on his appearance in Daniel’s tithable list.[31] Daniel is proved as his father by a gift of 300 acres in 1781.[32] His wife was Lucy, probably Lucy Elliot.[33]

The only significant source of information about Elisha is his Revolutionary War pension application.[34] He enlisted as a private from Lunenburg in February 1776 in Capt. James Johnson’s company, which later became Capt. Billey Haley Avery’s company, in the 6th Virginia Brigade. His brothers James and William also enlisted in Johnson’s company at that time. Elisha was discharged in February 1778 at, as he called it, “Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.”[35] His first petition for government financial assistance was rejected. In it, he stated that “while in the Service of his Country he contracted a disease in his eyes which he believes was brought on from cold during the Cold Winter of 1777 while encamped at Valley Forge.”

He served another tour in a Lunenburg militia company commanded by his brother Joseph as a substitute for his brother James. The company fought at the 1779 Battle of Stono Ferry, just east of Charleston, South Carolina.

Elisha and Lucy were still in Lunenburg in 1812, when they sold a tract on Big Hounds Creek.[36] Elisha (I don’t know whether Lucy was alive then) was still in Lunenburg in 1814, when he witnessed a conveyance by his brother John.[37] Elisha moved to Madison County, Alabama soon thereafter. He applied for a pension in Madison County in April 1818, stating among other things that he had lived there for about four years. He also swore to facts establishing he was indigent, a requirement under the pension act at that time.[38]

Elisha died in Madison County, Alabama in 1821. His estate file does not identify his children. “Bass F. Winn” of Lunenburg is the only child of Elisha I have proved, thanks to a power of attorney Bass gave regarding his father’s estate.[39] Elisha’s estate file establishes that he left no will but had six heirs.[40] The 1810 federal census for Lunenburg lists Elisha with five women in his household, presumably Lucy and four daughters. If anyone knows their identities, I would love to hear about them.

  1. Alexander Winn was born between 1753 and 1756, based on his appearance on Daniel’s tithable lists. He died in 1828. He is proved as Daniel’s son by a 1776 deed for 325 acres on Hounds Creek reciting the customary “natural love and affection.”[41] His first wife was Elizabeth _____, maiden name unproved. Based on Alexander’s will, they had thirteen children.[42] Their first son was named Lyddal Winn, perhaps prompting speculation that Elizabeth’s maiden name was Bacon.[43]

Alexander married as his second wife Jane (“Jincy”) Stone, widow of Richard Stone, in July 1816. The couple had a prenuptial contract, an unusual practice in the early 19th century. Jane had a large personal estate which she apparently wished to dispose of as she saw fit. Absent such an agreement, she had no legal right to control her own property after she married. She was a daughter of John Winn, the third Lunenburg patriarch, and his wife Ann Stone.[44]

  1. William Winn was also born during 1753-1756.[45] He is proved by both his appearance on Daniel’s tithable list and a 1777 deed in which Daniel conveyed to him 585 acres on both sides of Hounds Creek.[46]He likely sold 300 acres of that tract in 1781: Daniel’s sons Joseph and Alexander witnessed the deed.[47]

William was another Revolutionary War soldier from Daniel’s family.[48] He enlisted in Capt. James Johnson’s company of the 6th Virginia Regiment in February 1776 along with his brothers Elisha and James. William, a Sergeant, served through May 1777.

By 1783-1784, William was no longer taxed in Lunenburg. I found no estate administration for him and don’t know where he moved. I’m hoping someone who reads this has some evidence and will share it in a comment.

  1. Orsamus Winn was born during 1754 – 1756 and died in 1820 in Lunenburg.[49] His wife’s name was Frances, probably Jeter.[50] Daniel gave Orsamus 605 acres on Falls and Hounds Creek in 1781 in a deed identifying Orsamus as his son.[51] I didn’t find any interesting details about his life in the records.  His will named seven children,[52] and an eighth child is proved by a power of attorney from a son in Tennessee.[53]
  2. James Winn was born in 1757.[54] I found no gift deed from Daniel to James. He is nonetheless a proved son because (1) he was on Daniel’s tithable lists and (2) a Revolutionary War pension application by a proved son of Daniel identified James as his brother. He enlisted in February 1776 for two years in Capt. James Johnson’s company of the 6th Virginia Regiment.[55] He is shown on a Revolutionary War roll as a Sergeant in May 1777.[56] His individual service record lists him in Capt. Billey Haley Avery’s company, 6th Virginia Regiment, from August 1777 through January 1778. He was discharged in February 1778 at Valley Forge.[57] So far as I know, he never filed a pension application.[58]

He may be and probably is the James Winn who married Mary Ann Winn, a daughter of John and Ann Stone Winn, the third Lunenburg patriarch.[59] James had a hard time managing money.[60] I found no will or estate administration for him and don’t know where he moved. HOWEVER, serendipity intervened: I accidentally stumbled over him in family Bible images posted online. The Bible doesn’t establish where he moved after he left Lunenburg, but it does provide great information about his family. See the article about James here.

  1. Galanus Winn was born 2 Feb 1760 in Lunenburg and died 15 May 1839 in Madison County, Alabama. He married Rebecca Lester, daughter of Andrew Lester, in Brunswick County in January 1783.[61] He was the youngest of Daniel’s sons to serve in the Revolutionary War, enlisting in February 1779.[62] He served as a substitute for his brother James as a private in the militia company commanded by his brother Joseph. That company was in the Battle of Stono Ferry. One of his tours was in a “volunteer horse company” – a cavalry unit. He testified in his application that the captain of the company hurt his own horse’s back, appropriated Galanus’s horse, then discharged him. That is surely a unique way to obtain a discharge.

Galanus moved from Lunenburg to Laurens County, South Carolina by 1788. Rebecca apparently died there between 1810 and 1812. He moved to Madison County, Alabama about 1827. He applied for a Revolutionary War pension there in October 1832. One Huntsville newspaper carried an obituary for him with the headline “Another Revolutionary Soldier Gone.”[63] The Madison County court ordered a final distribution of his estate on March 15, 1841, naming three sons and four daughters.[64] Deed and probate records prove another son who predeceased Galanus in Laurens County.[65]

And that’s it for Daniel Winn, the second Lunenburg patriarch. Whew! The third, Lunenburg John Winn, is up next.

See you on down the road.

Robin

[1] See Part I  here.

[2] Surry Co., VA Deed Book 4: 226, deed dated 13 Jun 1774 witnessed by Daniel Winn, Daniel Carter, and Joseph Carter. That location may have convinced some researchers to place Daniel in Speaker Robert Wynne’s line, some of whom appeared in Surry. Daniel also lived in Prince George, another location for members of Speaker Robert’s family. Note: unless expressly stated otherwise, all citations in this article are from Lunenburg deed, probate, tax, and court records.

[3] Deed Book 3: 226, deed dated 4 Nov 1752 from Samuel Wynne of Lunenburg to Daniel Wynne of Prince George Co., 100 acres on the south side of Hounds Creek. Deed witnessed by Thomas Winn, undoubtedly Col. Thomas. See also Deed Book 3: 501, deed dated 15 Mar 1754 from Charles Irby of Amelia County and Stephen Evans of Lunenburg to Daniel Wynne of Prince George, 400 acres in Lunenburg on Falls Creek. Witnessed by Lyddal Bacon, Thomas Winn (Col. Thomas again), and Richard Stone.

[4] Order Book 11: 86, entry of 11 Jul 1765.

[5] Daniel acquired 100 acres on Hounds Creek from Samuel Wynne in 1752 (Deed Book 3: 226), 400 acres on Falls Creek from Irby and Evans in 1754 (Deed Book 3: 501), and 1,497 acres from Col. Thomas in 1762. See also Deed Book 7: 232, deed dated 8 Apr 1762 from Thomas Winn to Daniel Winn, 1,497 acres on Little Hounds and Great Hounds Creek. Witnessed by John Winn, John Winn, and John Winn.

[6] Order Book 4: 60, entry of 2 Dec 1755, petition of Daniel Wynne to build a water grist mill at the main falls of Great Hounds Creek. Deed Book 14: 169, deed dated 22 Jan 1780 from Daniel and Joseph Winn to William Hardy and Lyddal Bacon, 14 acres with the mill adjacent the Mill Pond.

[7] For evidence of the Revolutionary War service of each man, see the individual discussions in numbered paragraphs.

[8] You can find information about the 6th Virginia Regiment here and here. In addition to being among the units at Valley Forge, the Virginia 6th was also at Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth, and the famous crossing of the Delaware River.

[9] People who were on military rosters while at Valley Forge can be found  here.  I searched on the 6th Virginia Regiment for the name “Winn.” Elisha and James both turned up. The individual service record for each man says that he was discharged in February 1778. Gen. Washington’s army encamped at Valley Forge in December 1777.

[10] See information about Stono Ferry  here. Galanus Winn’s pension application says that he was at Stono with his brother Joseph’s company.

[11] Will Book 3: 85, will of Henry Tench dated 1777 and proved 1784. The will names his daughters Sarah Winn and Ann Tench. If it is correct that Col. Thomas’s wife Sarah was née Bacon, then the only “available” Lunenburg male Winn with a wife named Sarah in 1777 was Daniel Winn. Some researchers give her maiden name as Finch. Original Lunenburg tax, probate, and deed records are somewhat ambiguous, but most indicate Tench is correct. That opinion is based on my viewing of various original records at the Lunenburg courthouse.

[12] Deed Book 11: 183, 1768 deed from Daniel Winn and wife Sarah to John Winn, all of Lunenburg, 300 acres on Falls Cr. Witnessed by Thomas Winn (Col. Thomas), Joseph Winn (Daniel’s son), and Thomas Winn Jr. (also Daniel’s son). Sarah’s mark was a “V,” perhaps prompting some Winn researchers to identify her as “Sarah V. Winn,” “Sarah Vee Winn,” or even “Sarah Virginia Winn.” The odds that any of those middle names/initials are correct are de minimis.

[13] Joseph Crenshaw’s property (with tithables Cornelius Crenshaw, Gideon Crenshaw, and William Crenshaw, presumably his sons) and the tract owned by Richard Winn of Hanover were on the Amelia County list of “tithes below Deep Creek” in 1746.

[14] Deed Book 6: 404, gift deed dated 6 Apr 1761 from Daniel Wynne “for natural love and affection for daughter Martashi, wife of Cornelous Cranshaw,” an enslaved person. Daughters frequently received a gift when they married. If that was the case here, then Marticia was probably born between 1741 and 1746, assuming she married at age 15-20.

[15] Will Book 3: 241, will of Cornelius Crenshaw dated 28 Dec 1785, proved 9 Feb 1786, naming his wife Martisha and sons Daniel, Nathan, Pleasant, Cornelius, and Fortune Crenshaw.

[16] A Roster of Revolutionary Ancestors of the Indiana Daughters of the American Revolution Vol. II (Evansville, IN: Unigraphic, 1976) 385.

[17] Id. Children of James Jennings and Martisha Winn Crenshaw Jennings were Joseph, Thomas, Alexander, William, Elisha, and Erasmus. Marticia had brothers by each of those names except for Erasmus.

[18] Thomas Winn Jr. appeared on the 1764 tax list on the 300 acres his father Daniel gave to him. Men were tithable then at 16, suggesting that Thomas was born by 1748. However, it was unusual for a man to give land to an underage son, so I based the estimate for his birth year on the 1765 gift deed.

[19] Deed Book 10: 148, gift deed dated 11 Apr 1765 from Daniel Winn to his son Thomas Winn “Jr.” (Col. Thomas was “Senior”) for love and affection and 5 shillings, 300 acres on both sides of Little Hounds Cr.

[20] Deed Book 15: 213, deed dated 12 Apr 1788 from Thomas Winn to William Hatchett, both of Lunenburg, 371 acres on both sides of Little Hounds Creek. Witnesses were John Walker, Orsamus Winn, and James Trotter. The gift deed from Daniel to Thomas stated it was for 300 acres, which is the amount Thomas was taxed on in 1788. The increase in acreage may have been due to a new survey made when Thomas conveyed the tract.

[21] Naomi Giles Chadwick, Winn – Daniel and His 9 Sons 6, citing Elisabeth Wheeler Frances and Ethel Silvey Moore, Lost Links,  (Nashville: Mcquiddy Printing Co., 1945).

[22] I estimated Joseph’s birth year based on his appearance as a tithable in Daniel’s tax list in 1764. Naomi Chadwick says he was born about 1755, but that is way too late to have been at least 16 and taxable in 1764. There is no earlier personal property tax list on which Daniel appeared. All the 1764 tax list tells us is that Joseph must have been born by 1748. He was a Captain of a militia company in 1779. He was probably more than thirty to have that rank.

[23] Will Book 5: 20, will of Joseph Winn dated and proved in 1800. He gave his wife Elizabeth a “plantation called his father’s old place on Great Hounds Creek.” He made bequests directly to eight children and left a bequest in trust to his executors for the support of his son Benjamin, “but not liable for payment of any of [Benjamin’s] debts.” Joseph’s children were Daniel, Joseph Jr., Bannister, Sarah (“Sally”) B., Kitturah, Minor, Mourning, Elizabeth, and Benjamin Winn, the ne’er-do-well son who is my ancestor.

[24] Revolutionary War pension application of Richard Bacon (S.16625) proves Joseph Winn was a Captain in the revolution. See John Frederick Dorman, Virginia Revolutionary Pension Applications, Volume 3 (Washington, D.C.: 1959) 73-76.

[25] Id., Volume 22, application of Henry Cook (S.3181) dated 5 Sep 1832, Williamson Co., TN. Cook declared he served in the company of Capt. Joseph Wynn and Lt. John Wynn in the regiment of Col. David Mason and Lt. Col. Lewis Burwell.

[26] John first appeared as one of Daniel’s tithables in 1764, so he was at least sixteen by then. There isn’t an extant tithable list for the few years prior to 1764, which would have allowed a better estimate of John’s birth year. The next best age “indicator” is the 1768 deed to John from Daniel and Sarah. Men often received or purchased land soon after they came of age.

[27] Deed Book 11: 183, deed dated 23 Jul 1768 from Daniel Winn and wife Sarah to John Winn, all of Lunenburg, 300 acres on Fall’s Cr. Sarah’s mark was “V,” which may be why some Winn researchers identify her as “Sarah Vee Winn.” Col. Thomas Winn, Joseph Winn, and Thomas Winn Jr. witnessed the deed.

[28] Lt. John Winn’s service in his brother’s Lunenburg militia company that participated in the Battle of Stono Ferry is proved by Henry Cook’s pension application, see Note 25.

[29] E.g., Deed Book 7: 232, deed dated 8 Apr 1762 from Thomas Winn to Daniel Winn witnessed by John Winn, John Winn, and John Winn.

[30] Will Book 8: 170, will of John Winn Sr. dated 29 Apr 1819 and proved 10 Sep 1821. John named his wife Susanna, sons John and James, daughter Priscilla, and grandsons James S. Brown and Paschall B. Brown. The grandsons were children of his daughter Susan Winn and her husband William Brown who married in Lunenburg  in 1797.

[31] See Deed Book 12: 249, Elisha Winn witnessed a deed dated Nov. 1775. He was therefore born by 1754.

[32] Deed Book 13: 376, deed dated 8 Feb 1781 from Daniel Winn to his son Elisha Winn, both of Lunenburg, 300 acres for love and affection.

[33] I have located deeds in which Elisha’s wife Lucy relinquished dower, but I cannot find my source for her maiden name. Unfortunately, I did a lot of my Lunenburg research when I did not know what I was doing and often failed to record my sources.

[34] Here is a link to Will Graves’s excellent transcription of Elisha’s pension application.

[35] See Elisha’s service record here. The muster rolls don’t state his location, although the Valley Forge roster project includes his company (Capt. Avery’s) and his regiment (the Virginia 6th). Elisha’s pension application states that he was discharged at Valley Forge in February 1778.

[36] Deed Book 22: 214.

[37] Deed Book 23: 337.

[38] Elisha’s estate was valued at $780 in 1821. $700 of the total was attributable to two enslaved persons. The remaining $80 was attributable to a saddle, saddle bags, bridle, horse, mortar and pestle, ax, curry comb, skillet, and Dutch oven. FHL Film #5087877, image #93 et seq. Madison County, Alabama Estate case file, Winn, Elisha, 1821, Case No. 1086.

[39] Deed Book 25: 462, power of attorney dated 9 Oct 1822 from Bass F. Winn to Edmund Hardy, both of Lunenburg, concerning the estate of his father Elisha Winn, who died in Madison County.

[40] Madison County Probate Record Book 2: 211, 1822 court order to sell enslaved persons in Elisha’s estate because they could not be divided among six “legatees,” sic, heirs. Film #5176365, image #220 of 1767.

[41] Deed Book 12: 523, deed dated 23 Oct 1776 from Daniel Winn to Alexander Winn for natural love and affection and 5 shillings, 325 acres on the heads of Hounds Cr. adjacent Thomas Winn, “carpenter” (son of Col. Thomas) and Daniel’s son Thomas Jr. Daniel gave Alexander an additional 46 acres in 1777. Deed Book 13: 37, deed dated 30 Jul 1777 from Daniel Winn to his son Alexander, 46 acres on the head branches of Hounds Cr. adjacent another tract conveyed by Daniel to Alexander.

[42] Will Book 9: 223, will of Alexander Winn dated 1 Dec 1825 and proved 14 Jan 1828. Sell entire estate and divide among children Lyddall Winn, Daniel M. Winn, Hinchy Winn, William Winn, Alexander Winn Jr., Jonathan P. Winn, Joseph E. Winn, Asa B. Winn, Frances G. Pyles, Rebecca M. Jackson, Eliza R. Snead, Pamela B. Oliver, and Sally B. Morgan.

[43] Men named Lyddal Bacon abounded in Lunenburg. E.g., Will Book 2: 428, will of Lyddal Bacon dated and proved in 1775 naming, among others, a son Lyddal Bacon (Jr.). I have a Lunenburg ancestor named Lyddal Bacon Estes.

[44] Deed Book 24: 234, marriage contract dated 5 Jul 1816 between Alexander Winn and Jane Stone, Edmund Winn as trustee of Jane’s personal property.

[45] Daniel’s son William is first shown as a tithable on Daniel’s list in 1772, so he was born by 1756. He was not listed as a tithable in 1769, establishing he was born after 1753.

[46] Deed Book 13: 29, deed dated 23 Apr 1777 from Daniel Winn to William Winn for natural love and affection and £ 60,  585 acres on both sides of Hounds Creek.

[47] Deed Book 13: 387, deed dated Jan. 1781 from William Winn to Isaac Medly, 300 acres on Hounds Creek witnessed by Joseph and Alexander Winn. No dower release mentioned.

[48] The National Archives and Records Administration’s service file for William can be viewed  here.

[49] Orsamus Winn was listed as one of Daniel Winn’s tithables in the 1772 Lunenburg tax list but was not shown on the 1769 list. He thus reached taxable age (16) during 1770 – 1772.

[50] I cannot find my source for Frances Winn’s maiden name. Orsamus Winn’s will proved her given name was Frances. She also left a will in Lunenburg, something one doesn’t often see in the 19th century. My notes indicate her maiden name was Frances Jeter, although I failed to record a source. Two Jeter men witnessed her will, which is circumstantial evidence of her maiden name.

[51] Deed Book 13: 376, deed dated 12 Apr 1781 from Daniel Winn to his son Orsamus Winn, both of Lunenburg, 605 acres on branches of Falls and Hounds Creeks adjacent Thomas Winn and Robert Crenshaw.

[52] Will Book 8: 120, will of Orsamus Winn of Lunenburg dated 13 Jul 1819, proved 13 Nov 1820. Children Booker Winn, Edmund P. Winn, Eliza Elliott Winn, Mariah Hughes?, Janet (or Jean/Jane) Snead,  Frances P. Toon, and Lewellyn F. Winn.

[53] Deed Book 25: 424, deed dated 27 Jun 1822 from Munford Winn of Sumner Co., TN to Edmund Winn of Lunenburg, power of attorney in the estate of his father Orsamus Winn, dec’d.

[54] James Winn first appeared as a tithable in Daniel’s list in 1774. He was not on the 1772 tax list, so he probably reached age 16 in 1773 or 1774.

[55] James Winn’s military muster rolls at the National Archives can be viewed  at this link.,

[56] United States Revolutionary War Rolls, 1775-1783: May 1777 muster roll, Sergeant James Winn and Corporal Elisha Winn in Capt. James Johnson’s company of the 6th Virginia Regiment. Available online  here.

Id., Capt. Billy Haley Averys Company of the 6th Virginia Regiment, January 1778, Sergeant James Winn and Corporal Elisha Winn. NARA Series M246, Roll 103, online  here.

[57] See Valley Forge Muster Roll Project here.

[58] Lack of a pension application could mean that a soldier didn’t live long enough to file under the 1832 act, or he was unable to prove that he was indigent, a requirement of prior pension acts.

[59] Deed Book 22: 15, deed dated 24 Oct 1808, James Winn to Alexander Winn, all rights of James’s wife Mary Ann in the estates of John Winn, dec’d, and Ann Winn, dec’d, her mother. James is indebted to Alexander Winn as administrator of the estate of Peter Winn, dec’d, and the “conveyance” was security for the debt. Lyddal Winn (son of Alexander) was a witness.

[60] Id. See also Deed Book 21: 188, deed of trust from James Winn Sr. and trustee Lyddal Winn to Thomas Townsend, all of Lunenburg, trust secured by seven enslaved persons, livestock, most of James Winn’s estate. Witnesses Peter Lefflett, A. Winn, Alexander Winn Jr.; Deed Book 22: 8, pursuant to deed of trust to Lyddal Winn, trustee for Thomas Townsend, James Winn consents to sale by Townsend of an enslaved person to Alexander Winn, who has conveyed her to Samuel Vaughan for $100. Witnesses Richard Winn, Alexander Winn Jr.

[61] John Vogt and T. William Kethley, Jr., Brunswick County Marriages, 1750 – 1853 (Athens, GA:  Iberian Publishing Co., 1988).

[62] Here is Galanus’s original pension application file at the National Archives. And here is Will Graves’s excellent transcription, which is much   easier on the eyes.

[63] The Democrat, Huntsville, AL, issue of 1 Jun 1839, page 3, col. 6, Vol. XXV, No. 185. Headline: “Another Revolutionary Soldier gone.” “DIED – On the 15th ultimo, at his residence near Lowevillle, Madison county, Ala., Mr. Gallenus Winn, aged 79 years. He was a Revolutionary Soldier, and drew a Pension for the last seven or eight years, and a native of Lunenburg county, Va. He entered the army in his seventeenth year and served three tours. For the last eight or ten years he has suffered much from a stroke of the palsy, which rendered him almost entirely helpless. In early life he emigrated to South Carolina, and from there to this county, where he has resided for the last eleven or twelve years.”

[64] Distributees of Galanus Winn’s estate were Andrew Winn, the heirs of Alexander Winn, Edmund Winn, Patsy Dendy (widow of William Dendy), Charles Todd and wife Elizabeth Winn Todd, John B. Finlay and wife Rebecca Winn Finlay, and the heirs of Sally Winn. Madison Co. Probate Record 9: 438, 15 Mar 1841.

[65] Laurens Co., SC Deed Book K: 243, 10 Mar 1803 conveyance by Alexander Winn, part of a tract sold by Galanus Winn “to his son Daniel Winn;” Laurens Co. Will Book D-1: 368, letters of administration granted to Galanus Winn on the estate of Daniel Winn, 25 Mar 1817.

Lunenburg Winns: Part I of ???

This is another case of “my hair’s on fire,” pronounced mah har’s on far. I decided to write an article sorting out three Winn families of Lunenburg County, Virginia. I should have been warned off by a 1762 deed from Thomas Winn to Daniel Winn witnessed by John Winn, John Winn, and John Winn.[1] There were no designations identifying the witnesses, e.g., “Senior,” “Junior,” or “John Winn of Amelia County.” <Insert demented laughter here>

Red flags notwithstanding, I plowed ahead. One objective was to provide sufficient information for you to track any of these Winns if you wish — or perhaps have an Aha! moment when you spot a possible ancestor. A second objective was to spotlight a persistent error about these families.

The subjects

The subjects are three Winns who were born in the first quarter of the 18th century and died in the last quarter in Lunenburg.[2] Y-DNA establishes they were genetic relatives.[3] Here they are:[4]

  • Thomas Winn, the grantor in that baffling 1762 deed. Let’s call him Col. Thomas because he was a Lunenburg militia colonel.
  • Daniel Winn, the grantee in the 1762 deed. Daniel, bless his heart, has a reasonably unique name and doesn’t require a nickname to distinguish him from other men having the same name. Daniel and Col. Thomas were brothers.[5]
  • John Winn of Lunenburg, as opposed to John Winn of Amelia. Amelia John was a brother of Col. Thomas and Daniel. Lunenburg John was not their brother, although Y-DNA testing proves a genetic relationship. The three patriarchs are also connected in many Lunenburg records. Lunenburg John is surely at least a distant cousin of Daniel and Col. Thomas, although I can’t figure out the family relationship.

This begins by briefly discussing each patriarch and  identifying their children. That is also where it ends, because the three men had thirty-one children among them. Information about grandchildren is therefore limited, so far. In fact, I now find this article is so long that I must break it up into two and perhaps three or more parts….

… this Part I, about the persistent Winn error and Col. Thomas Winn.

… Part II about Daniel Winn and Lunenburg John Winn.

… additional articles with further detail about children and grandchildren.

First, a persistent error about these families

There is a mountain of disinformation on the web about the three senior Lunenburg Winns. Literally thousands of trees at Ancestry attach at least one of the three men to the line of Robert and Mary Sloman Poythress Wynne of Charles City and Prince George Counties, Virginia. Y-DNA testing has conclusively proved that cannot be correct. Descendants of Robert and Mary Wynne’s line do not match descendants of Col. Thomas, Daniel, or Lunenburg John.

Robert Wynne was an interesting character. He was the Speaker of the Virginia “Long Parliament” and a grandson of a mayor of Canterbury. He owned land in Kent. His grandparents died of the plague. One can understand why Winn descendants of the Lunenburg families might be happy to identify him as an ancestor, especially since Daniel Winn once lived in Prince George.

The mistake was understandable, at least until Y-DNA disproved it. The records of Charles City and Prince George are incomplete. There are also ambiguities in surviving records and Wynne wills. Furthermore, identifying the actual family of origin of Col. Thomas and Daniel involves analyzing a vast quantity of county records and connecting a multitude of dots. And I still haven’t identified the family of origin of Lunenburg John Winn, although Y-DNA also proves he was not from Speaker Wynne’s line.

Making him even more attractive as an ancestor, Speaker Robert’s line has a link to a fabulous historical figure familiar even to schoolchildren. Here’s the connection. A woman named Anne Stith married Robert Bolling as his second wife. Robert Bolling’s first wife, Jane Rolfe, was the granddaughter of Pocahontas. Anne Stith Bolling’s sister was Agnes Stith Wynne, wife of Speaker Robert’s son Thomas Wynne.

Speaker Robert’s line was fun for reasons besides the research. Among other things, descendants of the Robert Bolling-Anne Stith marriage include a lovely woman who was once my younger son’s partner. When she introduced herself as a Bolling and said her family was from Virginia, I said, oh, hell, I know the Virginia Bollings! My son rolled his eyes and asked how on earth that could be. Every genealogist who has done research in the Virginia Southside during the 17th and 18th centuries, I explained, knows the Bollings on account of Pocahontas. Failing to spot them would be akin to reading the Old Testament without noticing God.

OK, enough about the Speaker Robert error. Let’s get on to the Lunenburg patriarchs.

Patriarch #1: Col. Thomas Winn, born circa 1718, died in 1781[6]

Col. Thomas was the most prominent of the three “senior” Winns. He was a son of Richard Winn of Hanover County, Virginia.[7] Hanover Richard’s wife by at least 1733 was Phoebe Wilkes Pledger Winn, the widow of Mr. Pledger.[8] She was a daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth Wilkes.[9] I don’t know whether Col. Thomas was Phoebe’s child or the son of an earlier wife, or whether Hanover Richard even had a marriage prior to Phoebe.[10]

I first found Col. Thomas mentioned in 1743 as “Page’s overseer” in Hanover County.[11] He appeared in Lunenburg records for the first time in a 1746 deed executed when he was still residing in Hanover.[12]

He lived a high-profile public life in Lunenburg. He was a surveyor of a road in his area and was appointed to take tax lists, both positions of trust in the community.[13] In 1751, he was sworn as a justice of the Lunenburg county court with the honorific “gentleman.”[14] In 1755, he was sworn a “Captain of Foot” of the Lunenburg militia.[15] He was a wealthy landowner; by 1761, he had amassed over 3,500 acres.[16] In 1765, a commission appointed him Colonel and he was recommended by the Governor as a “fit person to be added to the Commission of the Peace” for Lunenburg.[17] In 1772, the Governor of Virginia appointed him county coroner.[18] He was a vestryman of Cumberland Parish from 1766 through 1780.[19]

His first wife’s identity is unproved. She is traditionally identified as Elizabeth Bannister, perhaps because she had children named Bannister and Elizabeth.[20] Col. Thomas’s widow Sarah is usually identified as Sarah Bacon. In yet another case of combining two different people into one, many internet trees identify Col. Thomas’s wife as “Elizabeth Sarah” or “Sarah Elizabeth.” A Lunenburg chancery suit proves beyond dispute that Col. Thomas had children by more than one wife, however. And his widow appeared in Lunenburg records simply as “Sarah Winn” with no middle name. I haven’t seen proof of her maiden name, although there is circumstantial evidence for Bacon.[21]

Sarah (Bacon?) Winn was apparently a strong woman. She outlived three of her four known children, a terribly cruel fate. She was guardian and presumably caretaker for her dying son Washington. She executed an agreement with her surviving son Edmund Winn and a John Winn Jr. (perhaps a son of Daniel Winn).[22] Edmund promised to build a house for John Jr. on the land where Edmund and Sarah lived. As a result of prior transactions, John Jr. would own the land after Sarah’s death. The agreement provided that neither Sarah nor Edmund would prevent John Jr. from using the tract. Edmund, however, stipulated that he was bound only for his own conduct, not the conduct of his mother.

Col. Thomas had seven surviving children by (perhaps) Elizabeth Bannister and four by his widow Sarah (probably) Bacon. All eleven are identified in a chancery court suit concerning the estate of his youngest son, Washington Winn.[23] In addition to Col. Thomas’s children, the suit establishes the married names of some of the women, the identities of some grandchildren, and relationships among the eleven children.[24] It also proves that Col. Thomas had at least two wives. Here are his children.

Children by Col. Thomas’s first wife, birth order uncertain:

Bannister Winn was probably born between 1753 and 1756 based on his appearances as a tithable on Col. Thomas’s personal property tax lists. Bannister was in Chatham County, Georgia by at least 1793, when he was on a tax list there.[25] His wife was Jane Barnard. [26] He died intestate in Chatham in November 1801.[27] He and Jane had five children.[28]

Elizabeth Winn married her first cousin Joseph Winn, a son of Daniel Winn. Joseph was a Captain in the Revolutionary War. He died in 1800, leaving a will naming Elizabeth and nine children.[29] If you are descended from Joseph and Elizabeth, you are a “double” Winn – descended from both Col. Thomas (Elizabeth’s father) and Daniel (Joseph’s father). You are also a lock for admission to the D.A.R. or S.A.R. if that is your thing, assuming you can prove Joseph was your ancestor. Proving that he was a Revolutionary War vet is a piece of cake.

Thomas Winn (Jr.) was born about 1748.[30] He died in Abbeville County, South Carolina in early 1797. His first wife was Philadelphia MNU, identified in family oral tradition as a cousin. His will mentions his brothers Bannister and William, as well as his half-brother Washington Winn, so there is no doubt that Thomas Winn of Abbeville was a son of Col. Thomas.[31] Thomas Jr.’s second wife was Lettice Martin Carter McFarland, who had been widowed twice. They married about 1786 in Abbeville. Thomas Jr.’s will named nine children, seven by his first wife and two by Lettice.[32]

Richard Winn. I am not certain when Richard was born or where he migrated. He was still alive in 1796 when the Lunenburg Court issued its order in the chancery court suit concerning his half-brother Washington Winn’s estate. I don’t even know whether he left Lunenburg. He may be the Richard Winn whose fairly small estate was probated there in 1807, although I doubt it.[33] Some Winn researchers believe the Richard Winn who married Sarah Hall in Mecklenburg County in 1775 was the son of Col. Thomas. That’s possible, I am just not aware of compelling evidence one way or the other. Alternatively, he may be the Richard Winn who was a surveyor in Laurens and Craven Counties, South Carolina in 1767. Surveyor was a position of trust (e.g., George Washington), which sounds like Col. Thomas’s family. Richard also witnessed a deed in 1772 as Captain Richard Winn — ditto. He obtained a land grant in Laurens in 1785 and sold it the same year.[34] I didn’t find a Richard Winn in either Laurens or Craven in a census. I would love to hear from someone who has evidence about Col. Thomas’s son Richard.

William Winn was probably born during 1749-1753 based on his appearance as a tithable of Col. Thomas. His wife was probably named Elizabeth (nickname Betty), maiden name unknown. They were married by April 1779, when she appeared in two deeds relinquishing her dower interest.[35] They may have moved to Abbeville, South Carolina with his brother Thomas Jr. Some William Winn is listed in the 1790 Abbeville census with a large family and a number of enslaved persons.[36]  I have no further information on William and would appreciate hearing from someone who does.

John Winn, who predeceased his father, died in 1768. He fought in the French and Indian War.[37] He had three children, one of whom was born after he died.[38] John named Thomas Winn an executor and specifically identified him as his father.

Mourning Winn married John Hix and remained in Lunenburg. As is often the case with 18th-century women, the records reveal little about her.[39] John Hix named their twelve children in his will.[40]

Children by Col. Thomas’s widow Sarah:

Henrietta Maria Winn, wife of Edmund P. Bacon. They had four children. She died before November 1796, when the Lunenburg court issued an order in the chancery suit case that proved her siblings, half-siblings, and children.[41]

Edmund Winn was born about 1765. Like his father, he was a justice of the Lunenburg County court. A cross-stitch sampler preserved by the family says he married Elizabeth H. Cousins in 1789. The sampler also names six children born during 1791 through 1812.[42] In 1818, he married Sarah A. Winn Snead, a widow. She was probably a daughter of James Winn, granddaughter of John Winn, and great-granddaughter of Daniel. I think. Incredibly, he left no will. His estate included 36 enslaved persons and was valued at $13,100. The record of his estate sale in November 1847 required four pages in a will book. His widow Sally A. Winn was the major purchaser.

Washington Winn was born between 1773 and 1777; he died between June 1793 and January 1794.[43] The chancery suit concerning his estate proves he was unmarried and childless at his death, despite claims to the contrary in some family trees. His estate was appraised at £ 324.10.6. in February 1794.[44] That amount did not include the value of land Washington inherited. One can understand why there was a lawsuit over his estate. With those sums at stake, his executor and heirs would undoubtedly have preferred a court-ordered distribution, especially considering that Washington’s mother, the headstrong Sarah Winn, was a party.

Keturah Winn, wife of John Hardy. They had five children. She also died before the Lunenburg chancery court order, which proved the names of her children [45]

And that is all I have for now on Col. Thomas, unless we get lucky and someone provides more information. Up next: Daniel Winn, brother of Col. Thomas.

See you on down the road. Soon, I hope.

Robin

[1] Deed Book 7: 232, deed from Thomas Winn to Daniel Winn conveying 1,497 acres on Little Hounds Cr. and Great Hounds Cr., part of 2,959 acres granted to Thomas Winn in 1761. Witnesses were three men named John Winn. Unless expressly noted otherwise, all citations in this article are to Lunenburg deed, will, tax, and court records.

[2] So far as I know, birth years have not been proved for any of the three Winn patriarchs. They died within an 18-year span of each other (1781 through 1799). All three had grown children and grandchildren when they died. Only one had minor children, and they were by a second wife.

[3] Y-DNA testing of descendants of the patriarchs (Col. Thomas Winn, Daniel Winn, and Lunenburg John Winn) establish that they shared a common Winn ancestor, see this article.

[4] This ignores a rogue named Samuel Wynne, see an article about him here. He is probably a relative of Col. Thomas, Daniel, and Lunenburg John. However, there seems to be no Y-DNA evidence on the issue.

[5] A book about Daniel Winn’s family says that Col. Thomas referred to Joseph, a son of Daniel, as his “nephew” in a deposition. Naomi Giles Chadwick, Winn – Daniel and His 9 Sons (Riverside, CA: 1976) xiii. Ms. Chadwick did not provide a source (!!@#%!!&!) and I haven’t found the deposition she referenced. There is also good circumstantial evidence that Col. Thomas and Daniel were brothers.

[6] There doesn’t seem to be evidence of Col. Thomas’s exact birth year. The St. Paul’s Parish (Hanover Co.) vestry book has an entry for 3 Mar 1743 mentioning Thomas Winn, “Page’s Overseer,” in a processioning order. C. G. Chamberlayne, The Vestry Book of St. Paul’s Parish, Hanover County, Virginia 1706-1786 (Richmond: Division of Purchase and Printing, 1940). It was not uncommon for young men from well-to-do families to get OJT as another wealthy family’s overseer. A reasonable guess is that Col. Thomas was about 25 at the time, thus born circa 1718.

[7] This fact has a convoluted evidentiary trail. The short story: there is excellent circumstantial evidence that Col. Thomas and John Winn of Amelia County were brothers. Solid circumstantial evidence also establishes that Amelia John was a son of Richard Winn of Hanover Co., whose wife was Phoebe Wilkes Pledger Winn. It follows that Col. Thomas was also a son of Richard Winn of Hanover. See a discussion in this article.

[8] Rosalie Edith Davis, Hanover County, Virginia Court Records 1733-1735: Deeds, Wills and Inventories (1979). Court Records at 13-14 and 16-18 record two fascinating Winn conveyances. In a lease and release dated 19-20 Jan. 1733, Richard Winn and his wife Phebe of St. Paul’s Parish conveyed to John Winn a 517-acre plantation on Chickahominy Sw. “purchased by said Phebe in her widowhood by name of Phebe Pledger.” On January 31 and February 1, 1733, John Winn of St. Paul’s Parish reconveyed the same tract to Richard; his wife Elizabeth released dower. A second John Winn witnessed the transaction. I don’t know the purpose of the land exchange.

[9] Id. at 148-149, agreement dated 6 Aug 1734 between Joseph Wilks of Blissland Parish, New Kent Co. and Richard Winn. Richard agreed to identify land (part of Richard’s tract) for Joseph and wife Elizabeth to live on; Richard also promised to build all necessary buildings and lend enslaved persons to Joseph. John Winn and John Winn (!!!) witnessed Joseph’s bond.

[10] I suspect Hanover Richard Winn did have a wife prior to Phebe. That is pure speculation based solely on the fact that the name Phebe doesn’t appear even once that I have found in the Lunenburg Winn family, which recycled given names ad nauseum.

[11] See Note 6.

[12] Deed Book 1: 71, deed from Samuel Wynne of Brunswick to Thomas Wynne of St. Paul’s Parish in Hanover, 150 acres in what was then Brunswick and is now Lunenburg. John Winn, John Stone, and Richard Stone witnessed the deed. The tract was on what is possibly the most well-known creek in Southside Virginia genealogy. In a fine example of irony, it is now called “Modest Creek.” It’s original uncensored name was “F*cking Creek.” See the article linked in Note 4.

[13] Order Book 1: 397, Thomas Winn appointed surveyor of the road from Nottoway across Modest Cr.; OB 13: 67, he was appointed to take tax lists.

[14] Order Book 2: 446, Thomas Wynne, gent., was sworn as a justice of the county court.

[15] Id. at 400.

[16] Deed Book 1: 71, 1746 deed from Samuel Wynne to Thomas Wynne, 150 acres; 1747 patent, 425 acres (can’t find citation, but it can be found in  Cavaliers and Pioneers Vol. 5); Deed Book 7: 231, referencing 1761 patent for 2,959 acres by Thomas Winn.

[17] Order Book 11: 86; id. at 84.

[18] Deed Book 12: 132, Thomas Winn’s bond as county coroner.

[19] Landon C. Bell, Cumberland Parish, Lunenburg County, Virginia, 1746-1816 Vestry Book (Richmond: The William Byrd Press, Inc., 1930).

[20] My friend and distant cousin William D. Lindsey exhaustively researched the Bannister family. He says he found no evidence that Col. Thomas’s first wife was Elizabeth Bannister, although he didn’t disprove that possibility.

[21] Sarah Winn named a son Edmund/Edmond. That was a frequent given name in the Bacon family. John Bacon of Lunenburg definitely had a daughter Sarah. Will Book 1: 258. In 1759, John Bacon’s daughter Sarah chose her own guardian, which meant she was born between 1738 and 1745. She was still single in May 1760, so her children would have been born between 1761 and 1779, when Col. Thomas wrote his will. Her son Edmund was born about 1765; her youngest son Washington was born between 1772 and 1777. Sarah Bacon thus “fits” to be the same woman as Sarah Winn, wife of Col. Thomas.

[22] Deed Book 25: 82, agreement dated 16 Jan 1820 between Edmund Winn and John Winn Jr.; Sarah Winn also signed. See also Lunenburg Deed Book 24: 386, deed from two children of Bannister Winn to John Winn Jr. confirming a prior deed to John Winn Jr. for Bannister’s remainder interest in the tract after Sarah’s life estate ended.

[23] Order Book 17: 134. This is one of the best pieces of genealogical evidence I’ve ever seen, even though the court’s order has two errors. First, it incorrectly named Edmund P. Bacon as Edward P. Bacon. Second, it switched the married surnames of Col. Thomas and Sarah’s daughters Keturah and Henrietta Maria. The court identified Keturah as Keturah Bacon and Henrietta as Henrietta Hardy. The reverse was correct. Keturah Winn was married to John Hardy; Henrietta Winn was married to Edmund P. Bacon.

[24] Among other things, the suit proves that Joseph Winn’s wife Elizabeth was a daughter of Col. Thomas. Since a married women had no legal existence of her own, her husband had to be a named party to any lawsuit. The suit also proves which children were Sarah’s and which were children of a prior wife. Under the Virginia law of intestate descent and distribution, the siblings of “the whole blood” received a full share of their brother Washington Winn’s estate. Siblings of “the half blood,” who had a different mother than Washington, received a half share. Washington, an unmarried minor, died intestate.

[25] FamilySearch.org film # 8628429, image #15, 1793 tax list for Chatham Co., GA included Bannister Winn.

[26] FamilySearch.org film # 5765260, image #1011 et seq. Bannister died intestate and I found no distribution of property to his heirs, although he owned both land and enslaved persons. He was described as “late of Chatham County, planter.” His estate file establishes that his wife was Jane Barnard Winn.

[27] Id. Administrators’ bond for the estate of Bannister Winn by William Barnard and Jane Winn (sister of Barnard) dated 27 Nov 1801.

[28] Bannister’s son Barnard Winn died single in 1806, see id., image #1022, Chatham Co., GA, 1806 estate file containing the will of Bernard Winn naming his sister Jane Williams; Lunenburg Deed Book 22: 12, deed dated 10 Nov 1807 from Bannister’s widow Jane Winn and children Jane Winn Webb Williams (wife of David Davis Williams), Rebecca Winn Williams (wife of John F. Williams), and minors Thomas Winn and Charlotte Winn. Charlotte subsequently married a Mr. Piles/Pyles, see Deed Book 24: 386, deed from Thomas Winn and Charlotte Winn Piles, children of Bannister Winn, confirming the deed which had been executed when they were minors.

[29] Will Book 5: 20, will of Joseph Winn dated 28 Mar 1800, proved 12 Jun 1800. Wife Elizabeth, children Daniel, Joseph, Bannister, Sarah B. Winn, Kitturah Winn, Minor Winn, Mourning Winn Gunn, Elizabeth Winn Brown, and Benjamin Winn, the ne’er-do-well son who was my ancestor.

[30] William D. Lindsey, a thoughtful and thorough researcher who is descended from Thomas Jr., estimated his birth year and provided information about his wives.

[31] Abbeville Co., SC Will Book 1: 173, will of Thomas Winn dated 31 Oct 1796, proved 28 Mar 1797. Wife Lettice. Two younger children Lettice and Robert, the latter under age. Sons Abner, Elemuel, Thomas, Elisha (money due from brother Washington Winn’s estate in Lunenburg), and Richard Winn. Daughters Sarah and Elizabeth Winn. Mentions money “in the hands of” his brothers William Winn and Bannister Winn.

[32] Id.

[33] Will Book 6: 233, inventory and appraisal of the estate of Richard Winn, dec’d, dated 23 Dec 1807. Estate included one enslaved person. There was only one bed and one saddle, a man’s. It is a good bet Richard was single.

[34] Laurens Co., SC Deed Book D: 319.

[35] Deed Book 13: 219, deed dated 28 Apr 1779 from William Winn and wife Elizabeth to Thomas Winn the elder, both of Lunenburg, conveying tracts of 400 acres and 167.5 acres; Deed Book 13: 265, deed dated 14 Oct 1779 from William Winn and wife Betty to Minor Wilkes, 200 acres.

[36] 1790 federal census, Abbeville Co., SC, William Winn, 1-4-7. One male > 45, b. by 1745, 4 males < 16, and 7 females. Six enslaved persons.

[37] Thomas Winn proved that John Winn enlisted and served his time, and that Harrison Winn was his son and heir, for a bounty land application for service in the French and Indian War. Lloyd Bockstruck, Virginia’s Colonial Soldiers (Baltimore:  Genealogical Publishing Co., 1988).

[38] Will Book 2: 326, will of John Winn dated Mar 1768, proved May 1768. John named his wife, children Harrison and Betty, and child “wife Susannah is now big with.” Executors father Thomas Winn and Joseph Winn.

[39] Col. Thomas Winn’s will named his son-in-law John Hix and John’s wife Mourning. Will Book 3: 75, will of Thomas Winn dated 18 Apr 1779, proved 12 Apr 1781.

[40] Will Book 4: 149a, will of John Hix dated 19 Feb 1795, proved 8 Dec 1796. Children Elizabeth Hawkins, Aggy Gee, Sally Gee, Martha Blankenship, Susanna Hix, Thomas Hix, Nancy Bevill, William Hix, James Hix, Nathaniel Hix, John Hix, and Frances Haggard.

[41] Order Book 17: 134. Henrietta Maria/Marie Winn Bacon’s children were Susanna Bacon, Sarah Bacon, Lyddal Bacon, and Thomas Winn Bacon.

[42] The sampler identifies Edmund and Elizabeth’s children as Ketturah W. Winn, Henrietta M. W. Winn, Frances E. Winn, Thomas W. Winn, Edmund C. Winn, and Harriett H. Winn.

[43] Several records establish ranges for Washington Winn’s birth and death dates. He chose his mother Sarah as his guardian on Oct 1791, which meant he was born by 1777. Order Book 16: 194. He was still a minor and alive in June 1793, when Sarah produced an account of his estate in her role as his guardian. Id. at 295. He was thus born after 1772 but by 1777. He had died by January 9, 1794, when the court granted his brother Edmund administration of his estate. Id. at 348.

[44] Will Book 4: 45a, inventory and appraisal of the estate of Washington Winn, dec’d.

[45] Children of Keturah Winn Hardy and John Hardy were Keturah Hardy, Armstead/Armistead Hardy, Sally Hardy, Edmund Hardy, and Jeane Hardy. Order Book 17: 134.