Sunday, February 24, 2013

Benjamin Carter Hawkins and wife Susan Lee

On Saturday, Feb 24th, Linda Keefer and I spent several hours looking at her Hawkins family and also my Hawkins family.....hoping to find some huge clue to connect our Hawkins lines.  Linda has no one at this time to do DNA testing to offer proof that her Hawkins line would match our Hawkins group #1.  However, the paper trails would indicate that there is a great likelihood that there is a connection.

Linda's earliest proven ancestor is Benjamin Carter Hawkins.  Benjamin's wife was Susan Lee.  Susan's mother was Sarah Terrell.

There is no doubt that the Lee family were neighbors of the Hawkins family in the mid 1700s in Orange County, Virginia and probably neighbors before that in Richmond County, Virginia.  It seems that many Richmond County families moved to Orange/Culpeper area of Virginia in the mid 1700's.  So there is some reason to believe it likely that Benjamin Carter Hawkins was a member of one of the families of the three/four brothers:  Benjamin married to Sarah Willis, brother William, and brother John, brother James who were the orphans of John and Elizabeth Hawkins (died in Richmond County, Virginia) raised by Richard Butler.  The oldest son, William, was apprenticed at his parent's death to Henry Wood to learn the trade of plaster.  I am not clear at this time if all of the children moved to the Culpeper/Orange County area of Virginia in the mid 1700's or just part of them.  I am very sure that Benjamin moved and I am working on proofs of the others.

Linda shared an article with me written by Judy Kellar Fox, CG that was published in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly 99 (June 2011): 85-96 about Documents and DNA Identify a Little-Known Lee Family in Virginia.  I will copy one paragraph from the article that is found on page 86:

"Charles Lee Bought land in Orange County on 24 September 1767.  "Being part of a Tract of Land the said Joseph Boston bought of the Estate of John Spotswood, Dec'd which....Contains Sixty acres,"  The parcel was half a 120-acre lease to Robert Boston and his son Robert, carved out of Alexander Spotswood's tract on 27 August 1746.  (I might want to look at this deed as Ms Fox says that there is a plat of the parcel in the deed:  Orange County Deed Book 10:397-401, Spotswood to Boston FHL microfilm 33,014)  On 13 April 1767 executors of Spotswood's son John had sold the parcel to Joseph Boston, who four months later resold it to Charles Lee.  Since Joseph Boston had held the parcel for such a short time, it likely was known as Robert Boston's land.  Lee's deed names neighbors Sleet, John Boston, and Willis."

There is proof later in the article that Charles Lee of Orange County, Virginia is the same man as Charles Lee of Richmond County, Virginia.  And there is proof that Absalom Wood is a relative of this Lee family by marriage....his wife was Kathrine Lee born in Richmond County.

I will quote one more paragraph from Ms. Fox's article.  I recommend anyone interested in these families read the article for oneself.  She is describing the migration of many families from Richmond County to the Rapidan River that is the boundary between Culpeper and Orange Counties.  Richmond county is in the Northern Neck of Virginia which would be the land between the Potomac River and the Rappahannock River on the map below.  Richmond County was on the Rappahannock east of the marker for Route #3.

"Local History sheds some light on the migration of Charles Lee and other Richmond Country natives to Orange County.  Destined for unsettled frontier land, they followed the 1716 Spotswood expedition route, up the Rappahannock Valley and along the Rapidan River. ....In 1742 Charles Lee and thirty neighbors lived on Chestnut Mountain, a low ridge within the Spotsylvania tract south of the Rapidan River.  They sought a court order to repopen a road so they could roll hogsheads of tobacco to Fredericksburt.  William Croucher, John Branham, and several Thorntons----all from Richmond County----signed the petition."

[Note:  Chestnut Mountain and Clark Mountain are the same mountain....just different names in different time periods]
This map taken from:  The History and People of Clark Mountain Orange County, Virginia by Patricia J. Hurst.  I have filed an e-mail that shows a map by Joyner in conjunction with the map shown here that helps put some of the neighbors in relationships.  The e-mail is in my mail program and also inside the book that I own by Patricia Hurst.

I have other posts on this blog about these families and these areas.  Use Northern Neck and Chestnut Mountain in the search window to get to some of the other posts.  

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