SOME OF THE DESCENDANTS OF THE REVEREND JOHN THOMSON (c. 1690 -1753) by John Goodwin Herndon
From Genealogies of Virginia Families – from The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography
There appeared in the Journal of the Presbyterian Historical Society, Vol. XX, December number, 1942 and Vol. XXI, March number, 1943, an article entitled “The Reverend John Thomson” written by Dr. John Goodwin Herndon, chairman of the Department of Government at Haverford College, Haverford, Pennsylvania. Now at our request Dr. Herndon has written for the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography the following account of some of the descendants of that remarkable pioneer missionary to “the back parts of Virginia.” Dr. Joseph E. Eggleston who, in a footnote to his article entitled “The Buffaloe Settlement and Its Makers” in the Virginia Magazine Vol. XLIX, No. 3 (Oct. 1941) page 311, expressed the hope that he might write an account of the Reverend John Thomson and his descendants has made available to Dr. Herndon the data he had accumulated on the subject.
The article mentioned at the outset of the preceding paragraph is so thoroughly documented that we feel it is unnecessary to cite references herein which are therein given in full and which the interested reader can there examine. On the other hand, when family data are mentioned which are not within the scope of that article, appropriate documentation is furnished in most cases -- Editor
John Thomson who was born in Northern Ireland about 1690 entered the University of Glasgow 1 March 1706 from which he later received the degree of Master of Arts. He was ordained to the Presbyterian ministry in 1713 by the Presbytery of Armagh. Two years later he arrived in New York, accompanied by his wife, he daughter Esther, another child, and probably by his sister Esther and other relatives. Shortly thereafter he was called to the pastorate of the Presbyterian congregation in Lewes, Delaware, a position which he accepted and continued in until 1729. He was a member of the General Synod of the Presbyterian Church in America from its establishment in 1717 until his death. After pastorates of Middle Octorara and Chestnut Level, Pennsylvania, he removed to Virginia. It is not known how many times he visited “the back parts” of that Colony between 1733 and 1744, bit it is of record that “he supplied in the neighborhood, at Rockfish Gap (now) in Nelson County, at Cub Creek in Lunenburg (now Charlotte) at Buffalo and Walkers in Amelia (now Prince Edward) County, and at Hat Creek and Concord in what became Campbell County. From 1744 to 1750 he lived on Spring creek on a tract of 386 acres which he purchased for 24 pounds from Samuel Cobbs. The deed, recorded 19 December 1745, describes the property as “beginning at a corner Red oak of William Watsons, thence north 33 degrees, 74 poles etc…. to a corner of the mountain survey on Spring Creek … on Watson’s line.” In 1751 he removed to North Carolina. There he died in 1753 at the home of his daughter Elizabeth and her husband Robert Baker very near the present line separating Mecklenburg from Iredell County.
John Thomson was twice married. The name of his first wife who was the mother of all but one of his children, is not known. It seems more likely that she died in either 1733 or 1734. He married secondly, between August 1734 and March 1735, Mrs. Mary (McKean) Reid. She was the widow of Thomas Reid, of Octorara, an elder in the church there, and a justice of the peace of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. In two records she is described as “a Highland woman of dark complexion.”
In Rowan County, NC, there is recorded a deed from Samuel Baker and Elizabeth his wife and Roger Lawson and Hannah his wife to one James Mordah, wherein it is stated that title to the property passed to the grantors under the will of “ye Reverend Mr. John Thomson, deceased:, but a careful search of the records of the courthouses of Anson, Rowan, Mecklenburg and Iredell Counties and of the Historical Commission at Raleigh has unfortunately failed to reveal that will or a copy of it or of the execution of its provisions. From data collected by numerous persons, however, notably Dr. J. D. Eggleston, of Hampden-Sydney, Va., the late Mrs. J. Morgan Smith, of Birmingham, Ala., and Mr. and Mrs. Worth S. Ray, of Austin, Texas, the approximate dates of the birth of the children of John Thomson have been carefully estimated.
By all odds the most important of the lists of descendants of the Reverend John Thomson is that compiled by John Cunningham (1793-1874), of Greensboro, Ga., and carefully continued by his daughter, Mrs. Mary Wingfield (Cunningham) Daniel, wife of Samuel Daniel Linton and now framed and hanging in the front hall of the old home of Mrs. Minnie (Linton) Winn, of Greensboro, where the writer of this article saw it in Christmas week, 1942. John Cunningham had an especial interest in this matter. He was the outstanding leader of Presbyterian educational activities of his time in Greene County, Ga., having built and presented to the Synod of Georgia the Greensboro Female College. In that sense he was a true descendant of his illustrious great-grandfather, who had labored so passionately for the cause of education in Delaware, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
The diagram that Mr. Cunningham used was a bit complicated. “Jno Thompson, minister, Prince Edward County, Va” was in the center. Around those words was an ellipse in which were entered the names of sons John and Roger Thompson (the almost unanimous of the latter generations being tot spell the name with a “p”0, the names of his sons-in-law Richard Sankey and James Cunningham in full, the name of the latter’s wife Ann, the name of the other sons-in law as Baker, Lawson, Shields and Graham.
Mr. Cunningham being unfamiliar with the names of some of the other sons-in-law, omitted them. Because certain of his Georgia relatives were Lawson descendants, he mentioned those whom he knew to be grandchildren of John Thomson – Ann, Roger and Hugh Lawson. He not only named every child of James and Ann (Thomson) Cunningham and whom they married but he used in certain cases their family nicknames. Each of those children was mentioned in the will of James Cunningham, Sr. The remarkable aspect of Mr. Cunningham’s chart is that not even one statement mad thereon has been found to be at variance with the records left in the Virginia counties where the family lived for certain years. He certainly knew whereof he spoke.
Dr. Eggleston agrees that the foregoing list is correct, as far as it goes, but from his studies of the available Thomson material concludes that John Thomson had three other daughters – Esther, Jane and the daughter who married John Finley, Sr.
We are indebted to Mr. W. S. Ray of Austin, Texas, for furnishing many details about activities of certain of the children of the John Thomson family and for showing that the Mary who married Robert Baker was also a daughter of John Thomson.
By his first wife John Thomson had three sons, John, Abraham and Roger, and nine daughters, Ester, Mary, Sarah, Jane, Ann, Margaret, Elizabeth and two others. By his second wife, nee Mary McKean, he had one daughter, Hannah. Brief notes on these thirteen children follow:
(1) ESTHER THOMSON (c. 1713 – 1770; daughter of John Thompson (and unnamed first wife)) was twice married, first about 1734 in Lancaster County, Penna., to Samuel Crockett (1685 – c. 1750), and secondly about 1753 in Southwestern Virginia to William Sayres (c. 1730 – 1784).
The children of Esther Thomson and “first” husband Samuel Crockett, were:
(a) Samuel Crocket, (1735-1795) married Jane Steele (1737-1775)
(b) Ann Crockett (1736 -- ) married Captain John Montgomery
(c) John Crockett (1737-1797) married Elizabeth (Montgomery), daughter of Robert and Rachel (Bohannon) Montgomery
(d) Jane Crockett (1739 -- ) married Henry Davis
(e) Catherine Crockett (b. 1741 -- )
(f) Robert Crockett (b. 1743 -- )
(g) Andrew Crockett (1745 – 1821) married Sara (Elliott) daughter of Robert Elliott of Prince Edward
(h) James Crockett (1749-1826) married Mary (Drake), daughter of Samuel and Mary (Cox) Drake
The children of Esther Thomson and her “second” husband William Sayres were:
(i) Robert Sayres (1754- 1826) unmarried
(j) Alexander Sayres (1756 - ) no further information
(k) John Thomas Sayres (1758-1816) married Susan Crockett, daughter of Samuel and Jane (Armstrong) Crockett
The descendants of Esther Thomas are traced by Janie Preston (Collup) French and Zella Armstrong in “The Crockett Family and Connecting Lines”, published in1928, as Volume V of “Notable Southern Families” by King Publishing Company, Bristol, Tennessee; to which work those interested in the continuation of these lines of descent are referred.
(2) MARY THOMSON (c. 1715—1761; daughter of John Thomson) married in Lancaster County, Penna., Robert Baker, Jr. (-------- 1759). In addition to the children of this couple named in Dr. Eggleston’s “The Buffaloe Settlement and Its Makers (XLIX “Virginia Magazine, 317-318) there was a daughter Eliza (Baker) who married William Baldwin, of Prince Edward County.
(3) JOHN THOMSON (c. 1716 – 1791; son of John Thomson) married Margaret Davidson. He was the defendant in a suit in chancery brought by his three Baker brothers-in-law in February 1755, wherein he was described once as “Jno. Thompson, eldest son and heir of Jno Thompson, deed” and again as “John Thomson, eldest son and heir-at-law of John Thomson, dec’d.” At the March court, a minute was recorded, concerning this matter thus, “Suit dismissed by consent of partys.” (Prince Edward Order Book for 1775, pp. 101,111). John Thompson (sic) was a tithable living between the Buffalo and the Bush Rivers, in June 1755, and was a voter there in 1754 (Tyler’s Magazine, Vol. 17:244-247, and Vol. 18:50-54). After 1755 he was always spoken of as “of Bedford County”, until Campbell was cut off from Bedford in 1782, hereafter he was “of Campbell”. In 1757 he bought from John Beard 402 acres in Bedford County which were “on the head of Falling River on both sides of the Augusta road”. In 1761 he purchased one lot in New London from the trustees of Bedford County; and in 1765 he bought land from Charles Lynch which he sold to Edward Phair.
Despite his removal from Prince Edward County he continued to own the land there which he had inherited from his father, Reverend John Thomson. In his will, dated 5 January 1791, he devised that land to his son Matthew, as well as the 315 acres on the head branches of the Appomattox, in Buckingham County, which Abraham and Rebecca Neighbours had sold to him on 31 July 1765. (3 Prince Edward Deeds 38). On 6 August 1768, Richard Woolridge of Prince Edward, sold him five Negroes, when he was, as usual, described as “John Thompson of Bedford County”. (ibid, 442) In his will (1 Campbell Wills 208) he named his wife Margaret, their seven children and certain grandchildren. The children were John, Jr.; Andrew; Esther Phair; Matthew; William deceased; Elizabeth, wife of William Gill; and Jane Mitchell Thomson. The grandchildren were John, son of Andrew; Margaret and David, children of William; and William Mitchell. William Thompson (son of John and Margaret (Davidson) Thompson) married Jane (Shilladay), daughter of George and Esther (Baker) Shilladay, as we know from two court records. The first, Prince Edward O. B. 1754-1758, p. 50, names James Thompson, wife of William, as one of the legatees of George Caldwell; the other, the will of Andrew Baker dated 3 January 1804, mentions “children of my niece Jane Thompson, daughter of my sister Shilladay.” (3 Prince Edward Wills 353) Andrew Baker’s sister Esther had married George Shilladay. (XLIX Virginia Magazine, 322)
(4) ABRAHAM THOMSON 9c. 1718 – post 1772; son of John Thomson) married ----------------; lived in Prince Edward County, where he was defendant in a suit instituted by the executors of the estate of Samuel Ewing. Although the record is not completely clear, it seems that Samuel Ewing had mortgaged his property to Abraham Thompson for 250 pounds, due to be paid 15 November 1766. Apparently when no payment was made within a reasonable time after the due date, the mortgages took possession, and the suit was begun by the executors to recover the property. Among the loose papers of the Courthouse at Farmville are some that pertain to this suit. One reads, “We of the jury find for the def(endan)t … (Signed) Jehu H. Walton, foreman.: Another says, “I give up all my right and title of the within bond and the land it shall recover or damages, to my son John Thomson as witness my hand 23d day of January 1770…. (Signed) Abm. Thompson”. On 14 April 1770, George Ewing, Alexander and Rachel Ewing, William and Jane Ewing, John and Elenor Caldwell, James and Margaret Ewing and Ann Ewing conveyed to John Thompson, smith, and Abraham Thompson the 395 acre tract “whereon Samuel Ewing did live”, being on the north fork of Fort Creek. The witnesses were Samuel and Andrew Wallace, Joseph Parks and John Caldwell. (3 Prince Edward Deeds 488). On 22 March 1772 there was recorded the deed whereby Abraham transferred to John Thomson, his son, his equity in the above=mentioned property. (5 Prince Edward Deeds 36)
His son John married Martha --------------, who joined with him in transferring this same property to John Watson Watson for 1300 pounds on 22 July 1779. (6 Prince Edward Deeds 143) In his will, dated 26 March 1793, proved in court 15 June 1795, John Thompson left to his sons Robert and Roger “all the lands in the tract on which I now live”, and other property to his son John, his daughters Sarah and Jane and his granddaughter Sarah Baker. (3 Prince Edward Wills 1) In that will there was no mention of his wife. It is recorded that “A marriage contract with Elizabeth Barton to John Thompson was presented in Court and proved by the Reverend Richard Sankey?. (Prince Edward O. B. for 1786, p. 263) Later on the name is entered as Elianor Barton. (ibid, 29) Again, in 7 Prince Edward Deeds 236, it is recorded that John Thompson, of Prince Edward, was about to marry Elenor Barton of Charlotte County; the date was 10 March 1786, and one witness was Richard Sankey. It would seem therefore that the first wife, Martha, had long been dead, and that probably the second wife, Eleanor, had likewise predeceased her husband.
On 16 October 1796 there was recorded a deed from Robert and Roger Thompson of Prince Edward to Andrew Baker to 400 acres on the south side of Spring Creek, beginning at Douglas Baker’s corner …. To the old lines of William Watson’s. Elizabeth, wife of Robert Thompson, waived her dower rights. (10 Prince Edward Deeds) The fact that the consideration was onl $10 indicates the probability of a close family relationship, which there was.
John, the other son of John Thomson, son of Abraham, married Mary Ann McGehee. They joined in a deed 10 April 1826 whereby, for $600, they conveyed to Mary Ann’s sister Grace and her brothers Nathan G. and Micajah McGehee, her share in the real estate of her late father Jacob McGehee. Nine days later the grantees reconvened to John Thompson the entire tract for $2,400. (19 Prince Edward Deeds 274,275)
Jane, daughter of John, son of Abraham, married Caleb Baker, their marriage bond being dated 18 March 1782. She made her will 14 January 1828, and therein mentioned her daughter Sarah Baker, and also “all my children and children of my daughter Betsy by William Thornton” whom she said had “raised and educated with but little aid from the said William Thornton.” The same day her daughter Sarah Baker made her will whereby she left her entire estate to the children of her sister Betsey by William Thornton. (7 Prince Edward Wills 66, 82). From a suit for the division of the land we learn that Jane (Thompson) Baker left as heirs-at-law the following: Thompson Baker, son; Mary Rice, daughter, and James Rice, son-in-law; Sally Baker, daughter; Nancy Vernon, daughter and Thomas Vernon, son-in-law; William J. Thornton, son-in-law; Nancy, Jane, Harriet and Betsey Thornton, grandchildren. (Prince Edward O. B. 1830, p. 243)
(5) SARAH THOMSON (c. 1720 ---- ); daughter of John Thomson) married in Lancaster County, Pa., about 1737 Reverend Richard Sankey. According to researches by Mr. Kernegan, of Belfast, Northern Ireland, Richard Sankey’s parents were Jacob Sankey and Abigail Jacob and his paternal grandparents were Richard Sankey and Mary Taylor, of County Limerick. Born about 1710 he matriculated at the University f Edinburgh 14 November 1728. He came to America in 1735; was taken on trial by Donegal Presbytery in Pennsylvania 7 October 1735 and licensed to preach 13 October 1736. He was ordained and installed as pastor of the Monada Presbyterian Church 15 August 1738 and continued in that relationship until the summer of 1759 when he removed with his family and a large part of his congregation to the Buffalo River community in Prince Edward County, Va. The cause of the migration of about thirty=five families at that time from the Paxtang neighborhood was the series of Indian raids and massacres which grew in intensity from 1755 on, in the course of which 14 members of his congregation were killed. On 9 October 1759 there was recorded an indenture between Patrick Shields and Richard Sankey for 400 acres “beginning at a corner red oak in John Cunningham’s line … thence to Robert Baker’s… with all houses, Out houses, Orchards, Woods etc.” (1 Prince Edward Deeds 137) That is the first official record of Richard Sankey’s being in Virginia of which the present writer has knowledge. From then on reference to him abound until his death which occurred between 19 October 1789 and 67 May 1790. (Hanover Presbytery Minutes for 1786-1795, p. 51) He was undoubtedly the author of the Petition of Sundry Inhabitants of Prince Edward County to the President and House of Delegates of Virginia, dated 11 October 1776, praying for complete religious and civil liberty and pledging loyalty to the Government of the United States. A brief account of his life is found in Richard Webster’s
History of the Presbyterian Church” and many references to him are found in William Henry Foote’s “Sketches of Virginia”, First Series. The latter mentioned the fact that Richard Sankey had married a daughter of the Reverend John Thomson (Opus cit., 118-119). He was an original trustee of Hampden=Sydney College and remained on its board until his death. He was the first named among the trustees to whom Peter Johnston gave the land for the site of the college on 20 April 1775. (5 Prince Edward Deeds 325). For the distinctive services that he rendered to the Presbyterian Church the serious student of the life of Richard Sankey should examine the Donegal Presbytery Minutes, 1735=1756, the Hanover Presbytery Minutes, 1756=1790, and the Records of the General Synod of the Presbyterian Church, copies of all of which are available in the library of the Presbyterian Historical Society, Witherspoon Building, Philadelphia. The Reverend Richard Sankey, first permanent pastor of the Buffalo Church, was also an original member of the Prince Edward County Committee of Safety, which was organized 20 November 1775 (3 American Archives 616-617) The date of the death of Sarah (Thomson) Sankey is not of record. That couple were the parents of four daughters and one son concerning whom brief notes follow.
Sarah Sankey married William Hammersley who signed the above-mentioned 1776 petition. They had a son William Hammersley, Jr., who died in Farmville in 1860. His funeral sermon was preached by Reverend Michael Osborne who had preached at Charlotte Court House and Cub Creek, in Charlotte County, and at Briery and Buffalo, in Prince Edward. In the course of that sermon he said “William Hammersley, son of William Hammersley and his wife Sarah Sankey, was born near Buffalo, Prince Edward County, April 12, 1789. He had the great advantage of pious ancestors, for his mother was the daughter of Reverend Richard Sankey, and her mother was the daughter of Reverend John Thomson”. (From a letter by Mrs. E. P. Davis to Dr. J. D. Eggleston, dated 15 June 1927)
Elizabeth Sankey, sister of the above-mentioned Sarah, married Joseph Parks, eldest son of James and Mary (Fulton) Parks. There is a tradition in the Park family (The “s” was dropped in Georgia) that Elizabeth’s first name was Eleanor, but the deed in which she joined with her husband for conveying title to a tract to her brother-in-law James Parks shows her name as Elizabeth. (6 Prince Edward Deeds 309) That land had been given to Joseph Parks by his parents on 21 May 164, and by one member of the family it was said to have been a wedding present to Joseph and his bride. On 8 September 1780 Joseph and Elizabeth Parks sold more land in the same neighborhood. On 1 May 182 Joseph Parks sold to his brother Ezekiel 200 acres “on upper side of where I now live” which was on Fort Creek. (ibid, 447) Joseph Parks was elected a member of the Committee of Safety for Prince Edward 20 November 1775; signed the Prince Edward petition of 1776; and served as a lieutenant in the army during the Revolution. (McAllister’s Virginia Militia in the War of the Revolution, Sections 16, 23, 24, 29 and 275). He was elected a member of the Board of Trustees of Hampden-Sydney College in December 1782 and served until 1794, when he had removed to Georgia. He resigned in 1795. He was appointed a justice of the court of Prince Edward in 1784, but declined the office, probably because he was preparing to remove to Georgia. He purchased land there in Wilkes County in 1788 and seems to have made several trips there between 1784 and 1794 when the Prince Edward Order Book notes that in February 1794 he had “removed from County”. To Joseph and Elizabeth Sankey) Parks were born three children: Mary, Joseph Littlejohn and Elizabeth Ann. Mary married James Cunningham Daniel in Prince Edward County, their marriage bond being dated 2 February 1790. (Note by transcriber. James Cunningham Daniel is known to be the son of James Daniel and Elizabeth Cunningham by Brunk C. Heinemann, Grandson of James Daniel and Jean Jane Kelso; great grandson of John Daniel and Ann Bates, great great grandson of John Daniel and Mary Williams) Joseph Littlejohn Parks (who adopted “John” as his name) married Sarah Owen Musgrove. Elizabeth Ann Parks married in George 15 October 1795 Reverend Robert M. Cunningham, as his second wife. (Saunders and Stubbs “Early Settlers of Alabama 108).
The Christian name of the third daughter of Reverend Richard Sankey and his wife Sarah Thomson, is not of record. She married James Parks, Jr., who died in Georgia in 1823 or 1824. They were the parents of Richard Sankey Park and Betsy Ann Park. James Parks, Jr., served as an ensign during the Revolution; signed the Prince Edward petition of 1776; and settled on the Oconee River, in Green County, Ga. After the death of his first wife he married Phoebe Hogue by whom he had ten children.
Margaret Sankey married Archibald Simpson.
John Thomson Sankey graduated at Hampden=Sydney in the class of 1788 and according to Bagby’s “General Catalogue of the College”, became a minister. The fact, however, is that he was a practicing physician of Wilkes County, Ga., in 1793. There he married in 1801 his firs cousin once removed, Ann Thompson Daniel, daughter of William and Hannah (Cunningham) Daniel. In 1827 the orphans of John T. Sankey were listed in the Georgia Land Lottery as recipients of land grants. They were (1) Richard Thomson Sankey who graduated in medicine in 1827 from the University of Pennsylvania and who married in Greene County, Ga., 28 October 1831, and (2) William Daniel Sankey who married in Greene County, Ga., 2 March 1824 Margaret Daniel a daughter of James Cunningham Daniel and his wife Mary Parks, mentioned above.
(6) DAUGHTER THOMSON (name unknown) daughter of John Thomson) who married John Graham, son of the John Graham whose will dated 12 April 1743 was probated in Lancaster County, Penna., 2 February 1743/4. Its executors were the Reverend Richard Sankey and Brice Sankey. (Lancaster County, Penna., Abstract of Wills, 320, in the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia) John Graham, son-in-law of the Reverend John Thomson, lived between the Bush and Buffalo Rivers in June 1755 and voted that year for Burgess (Tyler’s Historical Quarterly, 17:244-247 and 18:50-54)
(7) ROGER THOMSON (son of John Thomson) married in Amelia County 2 May 1759, Ann Ferguson. While nothing definite about this couple is known, it is worthy of mention that one Washington Thomson, spelling his name thus, married in Amelia County 26 October 1785 Jean Scott, and one John Thomson, spelling his name thus, left a will in Cumberland County, Va., in 1785 wherein he named his father Josia Thomson, one of his executors. Therein he provided that his son John Daniel Thomson should be given an allowance for boarding clothing and schooling until he was 21. He left a bequest to his brother William Morris Thomson, E. R. Swann and Josiah Thomson, Jr., were among the witnesses to this will; and Thomas Thomson Swann was surety for the executor, Josiah Thomson (2 Cumberland Wills 384). One correspondent has written that he understands that Josiah was a descendant of a Roger Thomson.
(8) DAUGHTER THOMSON (name unknown) daughter of John Thomson) married in Lancaster County, Penna., John Finley, Sr. who appears to have moved into the Buffalo community in 1765. At least we read that on 16 June 1765, Jacob and Honour Garrett sold John Finley for 160 pounds 400 acres on Vaughan’s Creek. The witnesses were John Garrett, John and David Caldwell. (3 Prince Edward Deeds 1). There were Gillespies in that neighborhood then too who had just moved down from Pennsylvania. About 1771 he and his family moved to North Carolina, settling near Charlotte. On 20 July 1772 he sold the above-mentioned tract to Stephen Pettus; his wife waived her rights, the deed says, but it does not giver her name. (5 Prince Edward Deeds 63)
On 4 January 1764, Richard Sankey wrote a letter to Captain John Le Neve, Clerk of the Prince Edward Court, which reads thus:
James Gillespy a single man from Augusta County has courted and proposes to marry Elizabeth Finley a young woman, a Sister’s Daughter of my wife (i.e., a daughter of a sister of my wife) who has lived with me between two and three years last passed. He applies to you for license to be marred by Mr. Garden, which may be safely granted, as I am assured is with the consent of the friends of both parties.
Which is all from
Sir, Yr humble Servant
With the marriage bond of 5 January 1764 is the written consent of his daughter to marry, and this is witnessed by John Finley, Jr. and Robert Baker.
John Finley, Jr., married in Mecklenburg County, NC, Martha, daughter of Colonel James Walkup who had moved to North Carolina from the Cub Creek settlement. A daughter of this couple was Poll, the first wife of David Crockett, frontiersman, raconteur, Tennessee Congressman and one of the six survivors of the Alamo who surrendered to Santa Anna and who were sot down by his orders 6 March 1836.
(9) JANE THOMSON (C. 1726 ------) DAUGHTER OF John Thomson) was born in Sussex County, Delaware. There one of her father’s relatives of friends, named Archibald Smith, left to her a small bequest in his will, dated 27 November 1729, and probated 4 December 1729. (Abstracts of Sussex Count, Del., Wills, Vol. 1, p. 321, Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania Library.) Other information concerning her, her husband Douglas Baker whom she married about 1744, and their children is contained in Dr. Eggleston’s article mentioned above. She married secondly 10 April 1767, William Watson in Prince Edward County, as his second wife. They had no children. William Watson had first married in Amelia County 23 September 1793, Mary Jones. He was one of the trustees of the “Presbyterian congregation in Buffalo settlement… under ye Immediate Care and Inspection of the Rever’d Mr. Richard Sankey, minister of the Gospel in said Congregation.” (2 Prince Edward Deeds 77) It was also adjacent to his property that the Rev. John Thomson purchased land in 1745 (2 Amelia Deeds, 317)
(10) ANN THOMSON (c. 1728 – c. 1776; daughter of John Thomson) married about 1747, James Cunningham, Jr., of Charlotte County. The present writer has some much material on the descendants of this couple that it will appear as a separate article after the conclusion of the present enumeration of the family of John Thomas.
(11) MARGARET THOMSON ( C. 1730; daughter of John Thomson) married John Shields. The probably moved to the Charlotte, NC neighborhood about the time the Finleys located there. A Mecklenburg County deed states that John Shields, planter, and Margaret, his wife, conveyed 10 October 1771 for 521 pounds a tract of 205 acres to David Bradford. The property was described as “On McCuistian’s line to Robert Moffett, thence to Moses Andrew’s line to John Finley’s.”
(12) ELIZABETH THOMSON (c. 1732-1776; daughter of John Thomson) married first about 1749 Samuel Baker ( -------- 1758) and secondly in North Carolina Charles Harris (--------- 1776). Samuel Baker was brother of Robert and Douglas; had joined with them in the suit against John Thomson, Jr., in Prince Edward in 1755; was a beneficiary under his father-in-law’s will, as will be shown later; and it was at his home within the former limits of Rowan County, NC, that the Reverend John Thomson died. Elizabeth and Samuel had five children, four of whom are named in the will of their father: Robert, John, Mary and Margaret. The fifth one was probably posthumous. (2 Rowan Court Minutes for 1758, p. 222) Elizabeth’s second husband, Charles Harris, who had early lived in Prince Edward County, was of Carabbus County, NC, when they married. They had two sons. The elder was Samuel Harris who graduated at Princeton in 1787; taught school the next year; and died in 1789 while employed as a tutor at Princeton. The younger was Charles Harris, born in 1762, who had sons named Charles J. (Harris) and William Shakespeare Harris. Elizabeth (Thomson) Harris survived her husband only a few weeks. He died on the Fourth of July, 1776. (E. F. Rockwell’s “A Gospel Pioneer in Western North Carolina)
(13) HANNAH THOMSON (1735 – c. 1769; daughter of John Thomson) married in Anson County, NC ROGER LAWSON (1731-1803), younger son of Hugh and Margaret (Moore) Lawson. Hugh Lawson was born in Ulster, came to America in 1727 in the George and Anne; lived for a while in Chester County, Penna.; about 1743 he moved to Virginia; became the presiding judge of the first court of Lunenburg County; became a member of the Virginia Assembly 5 May 1746; remained in Lunenburg until at least 151; obtained land grants in Rowan County, NC in 1755 and 1757, and in 1759 a 350 acre tract in Salisbury, NC; and died in Rowan County, where his will is recorded.
Roger Lawson and Hannah, his wife, and Samuel Baker and Elizabeth, his wife, were beneficiaries under the will of John Thomson. Although that will is lost, there is a deed dated 4 March 1755 between the above-mentioned persons and James Mordah which recites:
“Whereas the Right Honorable John Earl Granville, etc., did b his Agents, etc. make over by deed of sale unto ye Reverend Mr. John Thomson, deceased, a tract of 640 acres being and lying in the County and Province aforesaid as appears by said Deed bearing date the 25th day of March 1752 and further ye said Mr. Thomson deceased in his last will and testament left the above tract of 640 acres to ye above named Samuel Baker and Roger Lawson by said Will and Testament Relation being thereunto had may more fully and at large appear, 640 acres on both sides of the South Side of Fifth Creek, etc.”
In 1763 Roger Lawson was granted lands in St. Georges Parish, Georgia, afterwards called Burke (now Jefferson) County. He and his wife and children moved to Georgia sometime after 1756. He served in the Revolution and for his service received from Georgia a bounty of 287 ½ acres in Washington County. His home “Mt. Pleasant” was on New Bostick Hill, in Louisville, Jefferson Count, Ga. He died at the home of his son Andrew Berry Lawson, in Jefferson County, in August 1803.
The children of Roger and Hannah (Thomson) Lawson were:
(a) Hugh Lawson, 14 January 1755 to 20 February 1802; captain in American Revolution; wounded 14 September 1780 during the battle of Augusta; helped to select the site whereon the University of Georgia was later erected and his name is carved on its old Franklin Building; was appointed by Georgia to settle certain disputes arising after the Revolution from claims for royalty payments. He married, first, about 1789 Ann ----------, by whom he had two daughters: (1) Margaret (Lawson), born 30 November 1790, died unmarried; and (2) Hannah (Lawson) b. 19 February 193, died 26 July 1817, married G. W. Glenn. He married secondly, 3 May 1795, Sarah Whitaker, 1772-1840, and had Hugh Lawson, Jr., born 26 August 1799, died May 1856, married 1826 Sarah Bryan (1808-1847) and had issue.
(b) John Thomson Lawson, born 1757 in Brunswick County, Va., died April 1816 in either Twiggs or Warren County, Ga.; rose to the rank of colonel in the Georgia forces during the Revolution; married (at Columbia, SC, September 1, 1778) Alice (Moore) (1759-1798), daughter of Charles Moore, of Spartanburg District, SC and had seven children: (1) Charles Moore (Lawson) (2) Hugh Thomson (Lawson); (3) Roger (Lawson) who married Lucy Smith; (4) Hannah Thomson (Lawson) , born 1789, died 1842, married 1804 Archibald McIntyre, (1767 – 1830); (5) Mary Barry (Lawson)(1789-1853) married 1807 Francis Kirby, (1774-1854); Violet (Lawson), b. 1796; and (7) Alice Margaret (Lawson).
(c) Roger Lawson, a Georgia Revolutionary soldier, died without issue, 1801.
(d) William Lawson, killed in the service of his country during the Revolution, near Louisville, Ga.
(e) Andrew Thomson Lawson, born 22 January 1764, died in Washington County, Ga., 7 June 1822; served in the Georgia militia, refugeed after the fall of Charleston, SC; received bounty lands; married first, 15 December 1792, Mary Moore Barry (1779-1802) a daughter of Andrew Barry. They had four children: (1) Andrew Barry (Lawson) born 27 February 1794; died 3 September 1803; (2) Margaret Moore Lawson (1798-1853) married 1814, Alexander Irwin (1792-1842); (3) Elizabeth Hannah (Lawson) and Mary Barry (Lawson (1802-1869), married 1817 Benjamin Sessions. He married, secondly, Elizabeth Eakin, by whom he had four children: (5) Thomas Eakin (Lawson); (6) Roger Gamble (Lawson); (7) Alexander Eakin (Lawson); and (8) Mary Lockhark (Lawson).
(f) Hannah Thomson Lawson, called Ann, married, according to the Cunningham chart, -------------- Gamble, and had Roger Gamble and two other children, while according to another source she married Moses Spear. Of course, both statements may be correct.
(g) A daughter, married a Mr. Algood, lived in Rome, Ga., and left descendents.
After the death of Hannah Thomson, her husband Roger Lawson married Margaret McGill, who died about 1821. They became the parents of three children: (1) Margaret McGill (Lawson) born about 1770, who married 1786 Major John Gamble, (2) Mary (Lawson) who married Michael Burke of Jefferson County, Ga.; and (3) Andrew Barry Lawson who married Jane Patterson.
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