Saturday, October 25, 2008

Colonel John Mayo II

Yesterday, while touring the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, I spotted a portrait of JOHN MAYO. Photography was not permitted inside and I was too tired to take any notes, so I have only my "Vanishing Memories" to remind me of what I saw.

I found online a listing of "Artists and Artisans Represented in the Julian Wood Glass Jr. Gallery," which lists the portrait I saw as "Colonel John Mayo II (1760-1818)" and the artist as "Charles B. J. F. de Saint-Mémin (1770–1852)."

This Colonel JOHN MAYO II seems to be a descendant of the JOSEPH MAYO and ELIZABETH HOOPER on page 182 of "So Obscure A Person.” ELIZABETH's HOOPER family were the ancestors of the HOOPER wife of ALEXANDER STINSON, who appears on pages 40, 41, 194, 206 and 207 of my book.

David Washington STINSON

This post is in answer to the email following, received today. On pages 73 through 76, of my STINSON genealogy book, "So Obscure A Person,” I explain that when I encountered the will of David STINSON, brother of my ancestor Archibald STINSON, at Buckingham County courthouse, I was able to understand many relationships of my STINSON family. The will itself mentioned family members, but there were other documents in the extensive and complicated Estate Settlement, which helped in piecing together cousins, spouses, and others. These additional documents may have been loose papers, however, they were not hidden anywhere, as I was easily able to find them by using the courthouse index to the old records.

If these documents are no longer in the courthouse, I find that troubling, but not surprising. My experience in searching for documents in courthouses in Virginia is that many have disappeared. In the case of Buckingham County courthouse, there is the hope that these documents may have been "misplaced" during recent renovations, and will eventually be found. Unfortunately many documents are pilfered out of Virginia courthouses by "so-called" genealogists who feel they have a right to their ancestors' papers. "True" genealogists realize how harmful such pilfering is to the heritage of one's own ancestral family.
Hello, Edna,

I’m writing to ask for some research guidance, but first want to tell you how much I enjoy reading and using "
So Obscure a Person.” It’s my #1 reference tool as I continue my Stinson research. I also want to thank you for including me in your citations. I’m very flattered!

On page 144 you write that on 24 April 1884 D. W. (David Washington) Stinson signed a receipt for the money he received from his Uncle David’s estate, and you quote the receipt’s text. You also state that the receipt is on file at the Buckingham C.H. Unfortunately, that may no longer be true. Three weeks ago I spent the day a the courthouse pressing the Clerk, Malcolm Booker, and his staff to please locate D.W.’s receipt. The problem seems to be that when the staff moved back into the renovated Courthouse from their temporary quarters in 2002 (I think) they did not refiled many of the older documents. I was told that many old documents are simply piled up in the basement. I had to return to Virginia Beach that day but offered to compensate anyone on the staff who could find the receipt for me. When I called several days later I was told that Mr. Booker had “spent days” searching for the receipt but had failed to find it. They concluded that it’s not there.

Of course, I believe the receipt IS there, just as you say on page 144. Brenda Kitchens offered to try again if I could provide her with more clues about its possible location. Edna, can you offer any advice about where they could look to find D.W.’s receipt?

Gratefully, Kathy Stinson Hessmer

Virginia Beach

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Mary STINSON, 1662

"JNO. LEWIS & THOMAS MICHELL, 1680 acs. New Kent Co., 15 Jan. 1662, p. 84 (565). Beg. At Mr. Michells land, N.N.E. by Westover path, thence to Coll. Gooch’s cor. tree &c. Trans. of : Wm. Thornton, Rich. Boyne, Thos. Shugge, Law. Baker, Tho. Walder, Ellen Harwood, Mary Stinson, Jane Mayson, Rich. Saucer, Jno. Tillett, Geo. Catleton, Bryan Hazlewod, Ann Lulow (?), Eliz. Palmer, Joane Madd, Hugh Davis, Jno. Gunne, Wm. Colvert, Eliz. Gittins, James Ridly, Mary Taylor, Eliz. Smith, Ann Norton, Bridg. Black, Nich. Hart, Nich. Flower, Wm. Pearce, Rich Overton, Ann Shilooe (?), Tho. Hanson, Sarah Russell." ("Cavaliers And Pioneers Abstracts of Virginia Land Patents and Grants 1623-1666," Volume One, Abstracted and Indexed by Nell Marion Nugent, Virginia Land Office, Richmond, Virginia)

I cannot place this Mary STINSON of New Kent County, Virginia with anyone connected with Alexander STINSON of "So Obscure A Person” who was born about 1710.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Thomas BRYANT of Cumberland County

The Thomas BRYANT on page 43 of "So Obscure A Person,” was married before 1783, according to source #75 on page 60, which references the will of his father James BRYANT.

According to the 1783 will of James BRYANT, Thomas BRYANT had daughters Elizabeth BRYANT and Fanny BRYANT, both born before 1783.

**UPDATE: Please read the comments as to whether Elizabeth and Fanny were one person or two.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

George and Matilda STINSON

Chief William McINTOSH was a Coweta Creek Indian whose sister married into the STINSON family of Georgia and Alabama. The father of McINTOSH was Scottish. This image of a hand-colored lithograph is from the McKenney-Hall History of the Indian tribes of North America (1858), after the 1825 painting by Charles Bird King.

The George STINSON on page 99 of "So Obscure A Person”, was married to the sister of Chief William McINTOSH, before 1824. According to "The Politics of Indian Removal," Michael D. Green, 1985, pages 61, 62, 68, George STINSON was heavily involved in Indian trading and affairs with his brother-in-law Chief William McINTOSH. STINSON was arrested, his goods confiscated, and he was indicted at U.S. District County, Savannah, in August 1824. At the trial it was stated that George STINSON was married to a Creek woman and therefore an "adoped ... citizen of the Creek Nation." His defense rested upon his not being subject to trade restrictions of United States law, as he was an adopted Indian. Amazingly, STINSON was aquitted by the jury. William McINTOSH had a half brother from Savannah named John McINTOSH. From the 1850 Census, we see that the wife of STINSON was named Matilda.

Russell REEDER, a descendant of George and Matilda STINSON said that his mother knew the granddaughters of Matilda and they related that she was always proud of her native American ancestry.

On 26 December 1833, there is a land grant of 40 acres to George STINSON, 19th district, Section 2 lot #677, in Cherokee County, Georgia (George STINSON Papers, Georgia College and State University Library).

James Bryant STINSON

This is basically some additional information for #74, James STINSON on page 100 of "So Obscure A Person.”

According to descendant RUSSELL REEDER, the full name of JAMES was "JAMES BRYANT STINSON." This seems to continue the inferred BRYANT name from his grandmother Anne, the wife of Cary STINSON. This discovery also lends further credence to the inferred father of Anne on page 62 of my book. I had found him as "James R. STINSON" in the following "transcribed" marriage record. That was probably a misreading of the letter "B" by the transcriber.

The information for his marriages came from “Marriage Records 1838-1859 Barbour county, Alabama,” by Helen S. Foley, 1990: "James STINSON and Martha SENN, 14 apr 1859, by J.G. McLendon, JP" (page 100) and "James R. STINSON and Emily Talbot, 5 Octr 1859, at Wm. King’s by Jack Hardman, J.P." (page 102).

Descendant RUSSEL REEDER told me that James and his brother Alexander W. STINSON married sisters, who would have been the TALBOT wives who appear on page 100 of my book.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Page 126 - Typo

On page 126 of "So Obscure A Person” (Hardcover), the last sentence should begin: "He is believed ...," not "evHE" as printed.

Friday, May 30, 2008

George HOOPER of Buckingham County

I have found that the George HOOPER on pages 204 through 206 of "So Obscure A Person,” signed a Virginia Religious Petition in Buckingham County to silence non-juring preachers. This petition was dated 7 December 1780, and the signature of Joseph HOOPER appears also, along with his STINSON first cousins, David, George and Cary STINSON.

On pages 66 and 67, of the above book is an image of David STINSON's signature on the petition and more information about the 1780 petition.

The original scan of this petition, including all of the signatures may be viewed at the Library of Congress web site: Early Virginia Religious Petitions.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Page 193 - Typo

On page 193 of "So Obscure A Person” (Hardcover), the phrase in the first paragraph "the following month, January 1751" should read "the following year, January 1751."

Monday, May 12, 2008

Page 191 - Typo

On page 191 of "So Obscure A Person” (Hardcover), there is a typographical error. In the third paragraph the word "once" should have been written as "one."

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Page 42 - Elizabeth STINSON

On page 42 of "So Obscure A Person” (Hardcover), "Elizabeth HOOPER" should be written as "Elizabeth STINSON."

So Obscure a Person

So Obscure A Person

"So Obscure A Person" is the story of a man who wanted too much, and his Virginia descendants, who were the beneficiaries of his quests. He was ALEXANDER STINSON Senior of Williamsburg and Buckingham County, Virginia and his lifetime spanned almost the entire eighteenth century of Colonial Virginia. He first appeared in the court records of Virginia as a bound servant boy, “a slave without shackles.” The title of this book comes from the reply of the Virginia Council at Williamsburg in May of 1741, when, as an overly ambitious young man, he made an official petition for land to fulfill his dream of becoming a Virginia planter. After years in bondage, his hopes must have seemed shattered when President JAMES BLAIR and the Council denied his plea, explaining that it was "too much land for so obscure a person.”

As his childhood had been passed being owned by tavern keepers along Williamsburg’s Duke of Gloucester Street, young SAWNEY seemed not easily discouraged. He allied himself with some of Virginia’s finest families, and went on to win his Virginia land and much, much more.

Eighteenth century Virginians muddled through life much as we do today. They lived each day, one at a time, the same as do we, but they did so much more during those one hundred years of history. Alexander STINSON moved upcountry from Tidewater Virginia to a place called Willis’s on the branches of Cattail, in what is now the center of Virginia, Buckingham County. He saw the land when it was a wilderness, and he settled it, and built a home for himself and his family. His dream of working the land he had won came true, as he became a Virginia planter. He cleared and built his own roadways, he taught his children, and he helped create a society where there had been no community at all. He and his children rebelled against a tyrannical government, fought a war, and created a brand new nation. While living through it all, he kept intact the faith of his fathers. After having accomplished all that he did, his children moved on to new places to pioneer as he had done.

"So Obscure A Person” is a family history and genealogy of ALEXANDER STINSON Senior of Buckingham County, Virginia and his Virginia descendants. ALEXANDER STINSON is the progenitor of the STINSON family of Buckingham County, including those who went further South after the Revolutionary War. This book is the result of years of research at courthouses and libraries in Virginia and elsewhere. It is extensively documented with both embedded sources and footnotes, and is fully indexed. There is an excursus on the HOOPER family which includes the CABELL and MAYO cousins, relatives of the STINSONs.

Photograph from Flickr