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LAND

Little Walkers Creek

Virginia Land History

From the Library of Virginia

Richmond, VA

 

Early Years
 

Land was not granted in any consistent fashion during the earliest years of the colony when the Virginia Company of London had the rights to settle the land. In 1624 the Company's charter was terminatedand the colony became part of the manorial holdings of the King. (This is rather unusual. The King did not governVirginia as sovereign of England, but as a feudal lord).

 

In 1627 Governor George Yeardley began the headright system of granting land to those who brought people into the colony. Land could be taken out at the rate of 50 acres per imported person. Grantees had to pay annual quitrents (a kind of real estate tax), and "plant and seat" the land in order to keep it.

 

In 1649 exiled King Charles II gave the "Northern Neck", the area between the Potomac and Rappahannock Rivers, to seven of his supporters including Thomas Lord Culpeper. Over the years Culpepper purchased the shares of the others. By 1690 it became associated with Thomas Lord Fairfax, and grants in this huge (over 5 million acre)

proprietorship were begun. Because of the proprietorship, grants in the Northern Neck are not found at the Virginia archives. There were basically two separate colonies operating in Virginia from the point of view of land grants. For example, head rights were never recognized in the Northern Neck.

 

There was substantial disagreement over the boundaries of the Northern Neck Proprietary. In 1730 Fairfax's son, also named Thomas, got into a legal wrangle with Virginia over the extent of his domain, its size being defined by the location of two rivers whose sources were unknown at the time Charles had made his grant. Fairfax argued that

the Rapidan River was the real Rappahannock, thus enlarging the proprietorship. Incredibly, he won his case in 1745, throwing into tumult the legal status of land granted by Virginia in the fork of the Rappahannock. Many residents repatented under Fairfax. Others ended up in court.

 

In 1699 a new system of treasury rights (or treasury warrants) came into being, and it effectively did away with the headright system. Anyone could purchase rights for 5 shillings for each 50 acres. As before they were liable for quitrent and settling the property. Otherwise the land would revert to the Crown.

 

A law of 1705 forbade the granting of patents in excess of 4000 acres, but a number of companies and individuals were occasionally given permission to take out large tracts. Land companies and speculators played an important role in facilitating the settlement of the land because it was easier for immigrants to buy from the company (which had already purchased the treasury rights) than to go to Williamsburg. John Vanmeter, Robert Beverley, and Benjamin Borden obtained large grants of approximately 100,000 acres starting in the 1730's.

 

A map of the most inhabited part of Virginia containing the whole province of Maryland with part of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and North Carolina was drawn by Joshua Fry and Peter Jefferson in 1751.

 

The Loyal Land Company was granted 800,000 acres in 1749, the Greenbrier Company got 100,000 acres in 1751, both in the western part of the colony. They were given four years to survey the tract and purchase treasury rights but this time limit was extended up to the Revolution. There were numerous lawsuits relating to conflicting claims with early settlers and land awarded for military service.

 

During the Revolution it was not possible to obtain land patents. A state Land Office was created in 1779 by the new state government and it set about the business of approving land claims that had languished since 1775, and processing military service warrants.

 

Even though Lord Fairfax was English, his proprietary was not seized during the war because he was such a long time resident. But his heirs were British subjects, and when Fairfax died in 1781 it was decided to go after his lands and collect taxes on them. Needless to say, a lengthy series of legal cases began. The family finally sold their last

interest in the estate in 1808.

 

With the creation of the Federal Government, Virginia and other states were asked to cede their western lands to the fledgling government, which used them to create the Northwest and Southwest Territories. In 1781 Virginia relinquished its claim to lands in the Northwest Territories in exchange for being able to award bounty lands in the

Virginia Military District in what is now south-central Ohio. Virginia proceeded to award its military bounty lands in the Kentucky territory (until Kentucky became a state in 1792), and then in the Military District (after 1792 and before Ohio achieved statehood in 1803.)

 

 

 

Colonial Land Office Patents, 1623–1774

 

With the abolition of the charter of the Virginia Company of London in 1624, the administration of the colony was placed directly under the crown. As this included the disposal of land, it fell to the governor to use his broad powers to issue land patents. In 1634 the Privy Council authorized the patenting of lands under the principle of granting patents to any person who qualified as a planter. In practice, the acreage was awarded to the person who paid the transportation cost of the emigrant and not to the settler himself. This method, called the headright system, was employed as the major means of distributing virgin lands in the 17th century.

 

The office of the Secretary of the Colony was key to the process, and it remained in place until the Revolution. This office issued patents after all the steps were approved. First, the patentee was required to appear before a county court and present proof that a stated number of persons had been imported to the colony at his expense. The certificate of importation rights issued by the courts was taken to the Secretary of the Colony in the capital, where a "right" was issued that, when presented to a county surveyor, authorized him to survey the tract located by the patentee. Once the survey was completed, it and all supporting papers were returned to the office of the Secretary, and, if no discrepancies existed, two copies of the patent were made. One copy was signed by the governor, sealed, and delivered to the patentee, and the other was retained by the Secretary. No Land Office surveys are extant prior to 1779 although some county court records include survey books. Also, none of the supporting papers mentioned above are extant prior to 1779.

 

Another method of land distribution authorized during the 17th century was the military right granted to persons who would settle in hostile territory, but this was seldom used. In the 18th century the treasury right was established whereby land could be purchased. The office of the Secretary of the Colony continued to act as the official channel for the legal distribution of land until the establishment of the Virginia Land Office on June 22, 1779. This collection consists of the patents as recorded by the office of the Secretary of the Colony. These copies were hung on strings in the office and, as time was available, they were recorded in bound volumes. A random method of selection of documents to be entered accounts for the haphazard dating in the early volumes, and the method of hanging the patent on string accounts for loss of documents. The system of recording was improved in the 18th century. Rather than having duplicate copies made and entered in a bound volume at intervals, the patents were recorded when issued. All other accompanying documents including surveys were annually destroyed.

 

 

Land Office Grants, 1779–1993

 

The Virginia Land Office was established in 1779 by the General Assembly and was headed by a Register "appointed from time to time, by joint ballot of both houses of assembly. . . . " It was the responsibility of the Register to carry out the very carefully structured legislation that provided the procedure for obtaining waste and unapproriated lands. Under the act, any person could purchase as much land as desired upon payment to the Treasurer of a fee of forty pounds for one hundred acres. In return the purchaser was given a receipt, that was then given to the Auditor of Public Accounts, who issued a certificate noting the amount of land to which the person was entitled. The certificate was taken to the Land Office where the Register entered a warrant authorizing a surveyor to lay off the land. The warrantee entered a claim to the land by depositing the warrant with the surveyor of the county in which the land was located.

 

Once the survey had been completed, it and the warrant on which it was based were returned to the warrantee whose responsibility it was to deliver the papers to the Land Office. The documents were examined by the Register, and, if correctly executed, were filed for a period of not less than six months. If, within that time, no caveat (A formal notice filed by an interested party with a court or officer, requesting the postponement of a proceeding until the filer is heard.) was entered on the survey, the plat and certificate of survey were recorded and the grant was issued by the Register. Once written, the grant was signed by the governor, sealed, recorded, and delivered to the grantee.

 

 

 

Historical Overview of the New River Valley

 

The earliest documented European exploration of the New River and its valley was a 1671 expedition sponsored by Abraham Wood, Commander of Fort Henry at the falls of the Appomattox River of Virginia (Petersburg area) . The cartographer for the expedition named it Wood's River the adoption of "New" is unclear). Notable expeditions were made by Henry Batte, Thomas Batte, John Sailing and Dr. Thomas Walker between 1671 and 1748.

 

It was opportunist and adventurer, Colonel James Patton that obtained the original grant , The Wood's River Grant, in 1745 and commenced surveying and the solicitation for settlers. There had been numerous claims in the area, but it is now generally believed that the original settlement was in 1748 near present day Blacksburg and Drapers Meadows by George Draper, John, Thomas and William Ingles. A competing grant of 800,000 acres in 1749 was made to Dr. Thomas Walker and others as the Loyal Company of Virginia in 1749.

 

In the intervening years, the French, to protect its exploration interests from current Canada, and the Cherokee and Shawnee tribes, became more alarmed regarding the English intrusion of these hunting grounds. This would result in numerous skirmishes and bloodshed in the next few years which would retard settlement.

 

Biography

Dr. Thomas Walker

(1715-1794)

 

The Walkers Mountain chain, Big Walkers Creek and Little Walkers Creek were named for Dr. Thomas Walker. Dr. Walker was born on 25 January 1715 in King and Queen County, Virginia, to Thomas and Susan Preachy Walker. Walker's ancestors came to America in 1650 from Staffordshire, England, and settled in Tidewater, Virginia, where the family prospered as respectable plantation owners. Thomas was educated at the College of William and Mary and then studied medicine under his brother-in-law, Dr. George Gilmer of Williamsburg, a medical graduate of Edinburgh University. In 1741, he married Mildred Thornton Meriwether, widow of Nicholas Meriwether. Mildred was also a second cousin to George Washington. Walker erected their home, Castle Hill, on Mildred's 15,000-acre estate in Albemarle County, east of Charlottesville. The couple had 12 children.

 

Walker was physician to Thomas Jefferson's father, Peter Jefferson. After Peter's death, Walker became Thomas Jefferson's guardian. Peter Jefferson, like many of the wealthy Virginia gentlemen of the time, had spent much of his life exploring and surveying. It was perhaps through this long association with the elder Jefferson that Thomas Walker acquired his love for exploration, a fondness that he shared with the young Thomas Jefferson.

 

Walker developed great skill and reputation as an explorer and surveyor and in 1743 led an expedition as far west as present-day Kingsport, Tennessee. In March 1750, he led another expedition through present-day Kentucky that lasted four months. In 1752 he became the head of the Loyal Land Company, a position he held until his death. Thomas Walker was a physician, planter, trader, surveyor, cartographer, and explorer. He also served in the House of Burgesses, in local government, and in the Fredericksville Parish. He was an executor of the estates of Meriwether Lewis’s grandfather and Peter Jefferson. In 1779 he served, along with Daniel Smith, as a Virginia Commissioner responsible for extending the Virginia-North Carolina border to the Mississippi River. He died at his home 09 November 1794.

 

Southwest Virginia County Formation

 

The County of Augusta governed the New River Valley from 1745-1769. The county seat was Staunton and was far removed from the frontier settlements of the New River Valley.

 

In 1769, the new county of Botetourt was formed with the county seat being in Fincastle.

 

Because of more remote settlements west and along the New River and due to the great difficulties of reaching the Botetourt county seat; the residents of these areas petitioned the Virginia legislature for the formation of a new county. The county of Fincastle was formed in 1772 from parts of Botetourt. Fincastle remained the county seat for Botetourt while the Fincastle County seat was in the area of the Lead Mines in what is now Wythe County. This was a short lived county being abolished in 1776. All records for Fincastle are located at the Montgomery County Courthouse in Christiansburg.

 

Formed from the now extinct Fincastle County was Montgomery, Kentucky and Washington Counties. Named for Richard Montgomery, killed at Quebec in 1775, the county seat for Montgomery was Fort Chiswell now in Wythe County [later moved to Christiansburg]. Montgomery County covered 12,000 square miles and more than 25 counties were taken from it over the years.

 

Wythe was formed in 1790 from Montgomery County. Wythe County was named for George Wythe, the first Virginia signer of the Declaration of Independence. A place near the middle of the county was chosen as the place for the county seat, and was then called Evansham, although it eventually became Wytheville. The original boundary lines for Wythe County included all of Carroll and Grayson Counties, part of Smyth County, most of Tazewell County, parts of Bland and Buchanan Counties, a small portion of Giles County, part of Pulaski County, McDowell County, parts of Mercer, Wyoming, Boone, Logan, and Mingo Counties. The latter six counties are now in West Virginia.

 

Giles was formed the 1st day of May 1806 from Montgomery, Tazewell, Wythe, and Monroe Counties. It was named for William Branch Giles, United States Senator from Virginia at that time.

 

Pulaski was formed in 1839 from Montgomery and Wythe, named for Casimir Pulaski who paid the ultimate price, having sustained a mortal wound while fighting for American independence at the battle of Savannah in 1779.

 

Bland was formed in 1861 from Wythe, Giles counties and part of Tazewell county after 1870. Named in honor of Richard Bland the prominent Revolutionary period Virginia patriot.

 

Little Walkers Creek Original Land Grants

Virginia Land Office Patents and Grants and Northern Neck Grants and Surveys; Library of Virginia.

 

Montgomery and Pulaski Counties, Virginia

 

Thomas Shannon, Montgomery County, 208 acres, 2 January 1788. Grants # 17, pg. 390.

On Walkers Creek at the mouth of Little Walkers Creek. Beginning about 400 yards above the mouth of Little Walkers Creek. [most of this land is probably in Giles County in the Poplar Hill area, as this is where the Shannon family settled.] This is most likely Thomas Shannon who married Agnes Crow in Montgomery County, Virginia as the younger Thomas was not born until 1797.

 

Elijah Shofflebarrier [Shufflebarger], Montgomery County, 315 acres, 21 July 1788. Grants # 17, pg. 502.  On Little Walkers Creek in a place known as Meadows.

 

Abraham Shufflebarger listed in the 1815 Wythe County, Virginia tax list with “one farm on Little Walkers Creek, having one cabben, one stable, one smoke house and corn crib. Valued at $150.[1]

 

Robert McCulloh, Montgomery County, 14,500 acres, 29 September 1795. Grants # 33, pg. 189.

On Big Walkers, Little Walkers, some waters of Back Creek adjoining Saml. Hollinsworth’s survey. Crossing Little Walkers Creek to a red oak marked M…by the Waggon Road…crossing little Walkers Creek and Big Walkers Creek to the beginning.

 

Samuel Shannon, Montgomery County, 465 acres on Little Walkers Creek., 3 February 1799, Grants # 42, pg. 193.

 

Samuel Shannon, Montgomery County, 74 acres, 3 September 1800. Grants # 46, pg 49.

On Little Walker Creek in a place called Baiery Bottom.

 

Samuel Shannon, Montgomery County, 50 acres, 3 September 1800. Grants # 47, pg. 150.

On Little Walkers Creek.

 

Thomas Shannon, Montgomery County, 100 acres, 11 May 1808. Grants # 56, pg. 333

On the south side of Walkers big mountain on the waters of Walkers Little Creek adjoining Samuel Shannon.

 

Daniel Howe, Montgomery County, 100 acres, 11 December 1798. Grants # 42, pg. 17.

On Little Walkers Creek adjoining own land.

 

On November 6, 1851, John D. Howe and Joseph Howe executors of Daniel Howe’s will conveyed 100 acres to William Miller on the waters of Walkers Creek…corner to Zachariah Cecil[2]

 

Thomas Shannon, Montgomery County, 80 acres, 20 November 1817. Grants # 67, pg. 93. On Walkers Little Creek adjoining Samuel Shannon. Most likely Thomas Shannon son of elder Thomas married Juliet Allen in Giles County. Two of his children, James King Shannon and Mary Haven Shannon wife of  William Miller owned land on Little Walkers Creek.

 

Thomas S. and Juliet H. Shannon conveyed for love and affection to their son James K. Shannon. Land on the north side of Walkers Little Mountain…with the old road with James Cloyd’s inclusive survey. Dated March 19, 1867.[3]  Located around the area of Cloyd’s Mountain and land ….near the “Gap”. James King Shannon married Betty Bush. The Shannon family are buried in the Shannon Cemetery, Poplar Hill, Giles County, Virginia.

 

Two of James K. Shannon’s children conveyed land on Little Walkers Creek to William L. Hunter…Bettie Shannon Lula Shannon Weaver and husband Walter M. Weaver 750 acres running on old Robinson line corner to William Miller. Dated February 6, 1904.[4]

 

On April 15, 1911, W. M. and B. J. Weaver conveyed 800 acres to Oscar Laugon…being the James K. Shannon estate.[5]

 

Oscar Laugon conveyed the same land to D. K. Shinault on August 18, 1915.[6]

 

On July 1, 1919, D. K. Shinault and Nancy Mary conveyed the land to T. T. Dulaney.[7]

 

Hiram H. Davis, Wythe County, 50 acres, 25 August 1835. Grants # 85, pg. 144.

On Walkers Little Creek corner to his own land. [now Pulaski County]

 

John Shufflebarger of Montgomery County conveyed 74 acres to Hiram Davis on September 24, 1817…” said John Shufflebarger & Margaret his wife for and in consideration of the sum of three hundred dollars in hand paid by the said Hiram Davis to Abram Shufflebarger & the further sum of one dollar to him in hand paid the receipt whereof is acknowledged, do give, grant, bargain and sell unto the said Hiram Davis and his heirs and assigns one certain tract of land containing Seventy four acres be the same more or less, as surveyed for Samuel Shannon the 27th day of February 1783 lying in the County of Wythe upon little Walkers creek a branch of New River…”.[8]

 

William Davis, Wythe County, 134 acres, 25 August, 1835. Grants # 85, pg. 161.

On Walkers Little Creek corner to his own land…at the mouth of Harman’s Lick hollow.

 

William sold two tracts of land to his two daughters and their children Catherine King and Sarah Banes.[9]

 

John Shufflebarger conveyed 50 acres to William Davis on March 2, 1818 “…in consideration of the sum of two hundred dollars to the said John S Barger in hand paid by him the said William Davis the receipt thereof he doeth hereby acknowledge hath given, granted, bargained and sold, and by these presents doeth give, grant, bargain , sell and confirm to him the said William Davis his heirs and assigns forever a tract or parcel of land containing fifty acres, be the same more or less, lying in the county of Wythe and state of Virginia on little Walkers creek, the waters of New River…”.[10]

 

John Shufflebarger bought land from George Helm on October 9, 1811 ”…lying and being in Wythe County on little Walkers creek the water of New River being part of a survey of  75,000 acres, sold by Hugh McGavock collector of the Direct Tax, for the taxes due thereon and unpaid & William Patterson became a purchaser who sold the same or an interest therein to the said Helm … on the line of a parcel of 100 acres of the same tract laid off for Daniel Howe, besides the quantity now conveyed, two tracts of land, the property of the said John Shufflebarger and containing 74 acres other 50 acres…”[11]

 

The above mentioned 75,000 acres was granted to Robert Pollard on October 1, 1794 in the county of Wythe on the waters of East river, Bluestone River, Clinch River and Wolf Creek. Mentions James Shannon, William Patterson, Akalis Fanning, John Crockett, Robert Adams, Hugh McGavock. He was also awarded another grant for 150, 000 acres dated September 8, 1794.

 

Hiram H. Davis, Wythe County, 110 acres, 21 April 1837. Grants # 86, pg. 675.

Both sides of Walkers Little Creek beginning at a stake to his own patent land.

 

On October 18, 1846 the Hiram H. Davis heirs “…Elizabeth Davis widow and relict of Heirman H. Davis, deceased, Sally Davis, Juliet Davis , Lucien B. Davis and Martha his wife, Nehemiah Henderson and Amy his wife of the one part and Addison Davis of the other part all of the county of Giles…two certain tracts or parcels of land containing by survey one tract of one hundred and ten acres more or less and one other of seventy four acres more or less, it being the land which the late Hiram H. Davis decd. sold in his life to David & John Millirons and executed his title bond to said John and D. Millirons and by them assigned to the said Addison Davis, the land lying and being in the county of Pulaski on Walkers little creek…”.[12]

 

On January 12, 1848 the Davis heirs conveyed land to Joshua Mustard “…Elizabeth Davis widow and relict of Hiram H. Davis, Nehemiah Henderson and Amy his wife, and Sally E. Davis, Lucien B. Davis and Martha his wife, and Juliet G. Davis of the one part and Joshua Mustard of the other part, all of the county of Giles and state of Virginia (except Lucian B. Davis and Martha his wife of the County of Fayette)… a certain tract or parcel of land containing sixty acres more or less lying and being in the county of Pulaski on Walkers little Creek, it being the same that was sold by a decree of the Circuit Supr Court of Wythe for the benefit of Leonard Straw and sold by him to James Overstreet and by said Overstreet to Hiram H. Davis…”.[13] (This was the eastern part of the Draper survey.)

 

On April 19, 1850 Addison Davis conveyed a tract of land to “…David Millirons and John J. Millirons lying and being in the county of Pulaski state of Virginia on the waters of Walkers Little Creek and bounded as follows to wit…corner of survey that the said Addison Davis got of his Father…”.[14]

 

In January of 1852 “…by and between Addison Davis of the County of Giles and state of Virginia of the one part and William Mustard of the second and last part of the state and county aforesaid…sum of five hundred dollars…in trust for the benefit of Martha Johnston (wife of Lewis Johnston)and her heirs three several tracts or parcels of land situate, lying and being in the county of Pulaski in the state of Virginia on the waters of little walkers creek the first part of which contains one hundred and ten acres and is bounded as follows to wit Beginning at a stake corner to the 74 acre tract the original corner down with the lines thereof…the second tract 74 acres…Beginning at two black oaks on the banks of the creek…the third contains 53 acres and was patented to said Addison Davis in the year 1848…”.[15]

 

In October, 1871 William Mustard, trustee and Martha Johnston conveyed about 1 acre to William Miller corner to Lewis Johnson’s land.[16]

 

Joshua Mustard and wife Betsey… of the County of Wythe…conveyed three parcels of land to John Mustard on the waters of Walkers little creek known as the Kinion Place containing sixty three acres… taken off the Hoge farm twenty acres…also an entry containing ninety six acres adjoining the same tracts…a special Deed…with the buildings and appurtenances…sum of five hundred and fifty dollars…”.[17]

 

John Mustard and Lavica his wife conveyed two tracts of land to Hickman Powers on May 28, 1850; the 20 and 96 acre tract.[18]

 

Powers sold the same tract of land to Harvey R. Mustard.[19]

 

Mariah Mustard (wife of Harvey R.) sold the same land to Chas W. Fletcher on April 5, 1902… two pieces of land…first piece…corner of land of William Davis…Second piece…with a line of the Thurston land…with a line of Henry Davis equals 116 acres…[20]

 

On October 16, 1908 Charles W. Fletcher sold the same land to Ollie E. Davis and J. E. Davis her husband.[21]

 

Zachariah Cecil, Pulaski County, 807 acres, 30 September 1844. Grants # 96, pg. 18.

On the waters of Little Walkers Creek on a line of a survey of 14,500 acres made by Robert McCulloh …on a line of a survey of 75,000 acres made by Robert Pollard…corner of the land of Charles King.

 

James C. Ingram, Pulaski County, 188 acres, 30 September 1848. Grants # 99. pg. 765.

On Walkers Little Creek…by the Banes branch… corner to Wm. Davises land.

 

James B. Caddall bought the above tract of land from James C. Ingram in 1849.[22]

 

Henry Honaker, Sr., Pulaski County, 9 aces, 30 September 1848. Grants # 100, pg. 685.

On Walkers Little Creek corner of James Sayers’s land…with a line to his own land. (no other information available)

 

Lewis Jones, Pulaski County, 97 acres, 30 September 1848. Grants # 100, pg. 738.

On Little Walkers Creek…corner to land of William Davis…on a line of Addison Davis’s land. Jeremiah Banes bought this land. *See Banes Family.

 

Addison Davis, Pulaski County, 83 acres, 26 April 1850. Grants # 103, pg. 716.

On the south side of Walkers big mountain near the top including the Ferrin spring.

 

Addison sold this land to W. H. Woodyard on November 30, 1901.[23]

 

Addison Davis, Pulaski County, 53 acres, 1 October 1850. Grants # 104, pg. 114.

On Walkers Little Creek…corner to his own land.

 

Solomon King, Pulaski County, 122 acres, 2 October 1854. Grants # 110, pg. 420.

On Walkers Little Creek…corner to own land…corner to Lewis Jones’s land.

 

Addison Davis, Pulaski County, 83 acres, 1 August 1856. Grants # 112, pg. 716.

On the south side of Walkers big mountain east of the spring.

 

William Miller, Pulaski County, 646 acres, 1 January 1862.

Grants No. 118, 1860-1874, p. 157

646 acres in the valley of Little Walker's Creek (inclusive grant).

 

William Miller was married to Mary Haven Shannon. On March 4, 1847 Jacob Peck conveyed to William M. Miller and Sebastian W. Miller 190 acres of the south side of Walkers Mountain corner to the McCulloh survey.[24]

 

John D. and Joseph Howe conveyed 100 acres to William Miller recorded on November 6, 1851.[25]

 

William Miller leased the above mentioned 100 acres to John and James W. White recorded October 25, 1848.[26]

 

From various census years, land records and William Miller’s will, it appears that he did not actually live on Little Walkers Creek nor did his children. Up until 1880, the census listed value of real estate owned. There were several families living on Little Walkers Creek listed with no land. I suspect William Miller either rented this land or had some type of agreement such as sharecropping. Also, his children did not marry into any of the Little Walker Creek families. Taking into account that neighbors usually married neighbors throughout the 1800’s, I find there is significant evidence that William Miller was not a resident of Little Walkers Creek.

 

Miller wrote his will on February 17, 1871 mentioning his sons, daughter and grandchildren. 1) I have already, some years ago, made distribution of part of my land to my children as I thought would be equal. 2) Give beloved wife all household, kitchen embracing contents of springhouse and cellar. 3) Sale of personal property, selected by wife, divided equally; that which is not sold (except that given to wife) to be divided equally. 4) 1/5 of land to son James A. Miller, 1/5 to granddaughters Mary K. Darst and Elizabeth M. Darst; 1/5 to son John K. Miller, 1/5 to daughter Mary M. Glendy and 1/5 to daughter Henrietta Trolinger,. John K. got the lands of Walkers Little Mountain corner to the Hoge survey. Remainder of lands on south side of Cloyd’s Mountain and lands of Walkers Little Creek dealt with by executors. Executors were James A. and John K. Miller. Wish executors employ John B. Baskerville as their attorney. William Miller added a codicil on October 24, 1882…Since death of James A. Miller, I make change giving his first wife Orlena Miller, Hattie Miller and Thomas Miller children their equal share…Orlena not being capable of taking care of her part—have put in the hands of John M. Glendy. The children of Thomas Miller by Mary an equal share. James A. Miller children with last wife five in number will received equal share as children with first wife. I give John K. Miller the homestead by willing it to Nancy Glendy and Henrietta Trolinger, 284 acres. The graveyard to be enlarged 2 feet on either side. My old clock, desk and 2 old chests to Nancy Glendy and Henrietta Trolinger. My Hoge land—to John G. Miller—90 acres. On Walkers Little Creek 700 acres and land on Cloyd’s Mountain bounded by McCulloch survey, I put in the executors hands. Named executors William J. Glendy, Henry C. Trolinger as executors. William died sometime between 1889 and 1891 as the his heirs had several law suits pertaining to partitioning of his land.

 

There are two men mentioned in many conveyances in Bland and Pulaski Counties:

 

One being Phineas Thurston who conveyed land in Pulaski, Wythe, Giles and Bland Counties. In 1866, in Bland County, Phineas Thurston of “Roane County, Tennessee” appointed James Wygal and Joseph Wygal as his attorneys to transact all business relative to the recovery of a tract of land lying in the counties of Pulaski, Wythe, Giles and Bland, containing 7,500 acres and known as the Robert Morris survey.

 

Found at the Library of Virginia for Robert Morris grant for 75,000 acres in Wythe County March 19, 1795 on the waters of Reed Creek, Peak Creek and Walkers Creek.[27] The above mentioned entry in the Bland County Deed Book 1 may have been in error. In looking at the entry description, this land was also partially located in the Crockett’s Cove area of Wythe County.

 

Another name mentioned in many Bland County deeds is Max Grief (of Baltimore, Maryland) bought land from Franklin Sterns and wife of the City of Richmond…” which said tract was surveyed for James M. Gibboney…two separate tracts…containing 14,100 acres in Bland and Wythe counties. Dated May 12, 1890.[28]

 

The only land entry found for a James M. Gibboney was in 1895 in Wythe for 95 acres on the north side of Draper’s Mountain.[29]

 

Jacob Peck appears in Pulaski County in the 1850 Pulaski County census as 80 years old with wife Eve. Jacob married Eve Wysor 5 January 1796 in Montgomery County. He does not appear to have lived on Little Walkers Creek. Just as William Miller, he may have rented the land. The only land grants found for him were in Giles County on Walkers Creek. Jacob’s will was probated in Pulaski County on February 9, 1854. His will was written May 12, 1853 and mentions the following: “…$1900 in cash to Augustus and Elizabeth Martin for taking care of me while I live…my daughter Louisa Robinson to have the tract of land she now lives on Little Walkers Creek, 85 acres…”$500 to be divided equally between Robert Weeks’ children which he had by his wife Catherine, my daughter…all other be divided between Christopher Peck, William Peck, Mary Brookman, Nancy Burton, Fradela Burton, Louisa Robinson, and Catherine Brookman, my granddaughter.[30]

 

Christopher Peck had moved to Wisconsin by 1855 as he appointed a lawyer in Pulaski on October 11, 1855 for the purpose of …”getting my share of the estate of J. Peck…”[31]

 

Russell H. Cecil was conveyed a tract of land on July 4, 1842 by James Bane, John Carr, John Bane, William C. Carr and Jesse Bane, all of the county of Giles. The tract of land being part of a survey of 14,500 acres patented to Robert McCullough located Little Walkers Creek and Cloyd’s Mountain. No acreage was given.[32]

 

Russell H. Cecil and Zachariah W. Cecil were brothers, sons of Zachariah White Cecil, Sr. Zachariah, Sr. married Julia Howe on 02 October 1814 in Montgomery County. Zachariah, Sr. most likely received his land through his wife, Julia as she was the daughter of the above mentioned Daniel Howe. Zachariah, Jr. was the only member of the Cecil family who lived on Little Walkers Creek.

 

Zachariah W. Cecil, Sr. conveyed two tracts of land to Russell H. Cecil and Zachariah W. Cecil, Jr. on September 2, 1841. Lying adjoining each other on Little Walkers Creek and adjoining Millirons, Simpkins and other others.[33]

 

In April, 1843 John Simpkins conveyed to Giles S. Cecil in trust for the purpose of securing to Russell H. Cecil the sum of one hundred and eleven dollars a parcel of land he now lives on containing 115 acres on Little Walkers Creek and adjoins the land of Jacob Peck and Russell H. Cecil it being the land conveyed to said Simpkins by David Miller and on May 20, 1844 the Giles S. Cecil acting in conformity of the trust deed did at the front door of the courthouse of Pulaski County sold the land at public sale to Russell H. Cecil, he being the highest bidder…adjoining Jacob Peck and Russell H. Cecil…[34]

 

On May 20, 1844 between Russell H. Cecil and Zachariah Cecil, Jr. for consideration of an equal division of lands between the said parties. Russell conveyed to Zachariah two certain tracts of land adjoining each other and adjoining Jacob Peck, Russell Cecil and his own and others.[35]

 

On September 14, 1852 Russell Cecil and Lucy A. his wife of Wayne County, Kentucky conveyed to Zachariah Cecil, Jr. of Pulaski their entire interest in the Alum Spring and that

portion of 1 acres of land that is included.[36]

 

Zachariah Cecil Jr. wrote his will on April 12, 1878: “…To Mary Ann my beloved wife my whole real estate and half personalty except what is hereafter devised…what is left after her death is to be equally divided between Nancy Jane Boyd, James T. Cecil, Estelle Ann Cecil, Julia E. Lachy, Irene E. Holbrook and Charles W. Cecil…” After death of wife 2/3 of real estate goes to son Zachariah S. Cecil. Interest in the Pulaski Alum Springs to be equally divided.[37]

 

Probated in August 1878.[38] Zachariah White Cecil, Jr. was married to Mary Ann Henderson on 10 June 1839 in Montgomery County.

 

 

 

Wythe and Bland Counties, Virginia

 

John Crockett Wythe County, 350 acres, 5 June 1799. Grants # 41, pg. 290.

On both sides of Walkers Little Creek.

 

John Crockett, Wythe County, 250 acres, 4 June 1799. Grant # 41, pg. 264.

On Walkers Little Creek.

"...a military warrant number one thousand and twenty two issued the twentieth day of May 1780 under the King of Great Britain Proclamation of 1763 and an exchange Preemption Warrant number 145 issued the 18th day of April 1782..."

 

“John Crockett appears to have served in the French and Indian War, as he is listed as a sergeant on the frontier in 1763/1764. He is also mentioned as a member of William Christians’ Company in 1764, and as a claimant for 200 acres of land in 1780, for service in that war.” He served as lieutenant in the Revolutionary War.[39]

 

John Crockett was the son of Samuel Crockett and Ester Thompson born 1737 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and died in 1799 in Wythe County. He is buried in the old Crockett Cemetery in Crockett’s Cove. John married Elizabeth Martha Montgomery in 1768.[40]

 

In 1808, Samuel and John Crockett, sons of John, were holding the land inherited from their father as tenants in common. There were three tracts, two being on Walkers Little Creek.[41]

 

Samuel Crockett wrote his will on September 4, 1808 and it was probated on March 14, 1809. The executors were to sell the 350 acre tract on Walkers Creek and divide the money equally among the three daughters.[42]

 

Evidently, the executors did not sell the 350 acre survey because Samuel Crockett’s daughter and grandson sold it on August 16, 1872. Margaret Crockett and Robert H. Gleaves sold 408 acres in Bland County to Abraham Wampler located on Walkers Little Creek. “…been owned jointly by the said Margaret T. Crockett and Malvina Gleaves…”.[43]  Robert H. Gleaves was the son of James T. Gleaves and Malvina Crockett.

 

A contract was made between Abraham Wampler and Mary Wampler his wife and Robert S. King on December 27, 1879. It was agreed that Robert King would build a house on the Wampler property and reside there and shall furnish to the parties of the first part a good and comfortable support and sustenance during their natural lives; the said party of the second part shall faithfully perform the conditions above set forth in this contract then at the death of the survivor of the said parties of the first part the said Robert S. King to be the full and complete owner in fee of all the lands now owned by said Wampler in said tract being the residue of the tract conveyed to said Abraham Wampler by Margaret Crockett and Robert H. Gleaves.[44]

 

Evidently Robert King did not comply with the contract as Abraham Wampler and wife made another contract with Sarah C. Srader [Shrader] and her 6 children as above written with Robert S. King, to wit: “James Brown, Samuel Gleaves, Eliza J., Mary J., and Joseph, Henry”.[45]

 

On August 8, 1881, Abram Wampler and Mary Wampler his wife, Joseph Shrader and Sarah C. Shrader his wife conveyed land to Wm. N. Mustard, J. Henderson Bruce and A. N. Thompson school trustees for Seddon school District in Bland County, Va. “…doth hereby grant unto said parties of the second part and their survivors to be held, used, enjoyed and verified as and for public free school purposes to erect a Public free schoolhouse…Beginning at a dead stump corner to the lands of George Hancock and others.[46]

 

On the 14th day of August 1884 Abram Wampler and Polly his wife and Joseph Shrader and Sarah C. Shrader his wife conveyed land to George W. Hancock, Jr. a certain tract of land lying on waters of Walkers Little Creek adjoining the lands upon which the said Wampler now lives & being a part of the tract bought by said Wampler known as the John Crockett entry.[47]

 

In 1812, John Crockett (son of the elder John) sold 250 acres of land on Little Walkers Creek to John Leedy.[48] John Leedy is listed in the 1815 Wythe County tax list as follows:

“one farm lying on Little Walkers Creek, 575 acres having thereon one “cabben,” one loom house, valued at $300. Part mountain land”.[49]

 

In 1825, John Leedy and wife Polly sold 250 acres on Little Walkers Creek to Isaac Baker.[50]

 

In 1831, the same land was conveyed to James Overstreet by Isaac Baker and wife Sally.[51]

 

In 1832, James Overstreet and wife Sally of Montgomery County sold the land back to the Crockett family…”James Crockett and John Crockett…”[52] This may be James Overstreet who married Sarah Caddall 10 February 1817 in Montgomery County.

 

In 1850, the same land was conveyed to John C. Crockett “…Joseph N., William G. and Thompson S. Crockett of the one part and John C. Crockett of the other part… Being the same land conveyed from James Overstreet unto James and John Crockett by deed bearing date the 15th day of August 1832”[53]

 

John C. Crockett, Wythe County, 70 72/116 acres, 31 August 1846, Grants # 98, pg. 126. On Walkers Little Creek.

 

William Hounshell, Wythe County, 605 acres, 30 June 1843. Grants # 94, pg. 271.

On Walkers Creek…corner to James T. Gleaves and Margaret Crockett…crossing Dunn’s road .

 

In 1876, Nancy Hounshell sold 100 acres to Martin Hill being part of a grant of 605 acres and 112 perches “…bounded on west by the Turnpike…”.[54]  The Turnpike refers to the Raleigh Grayson Turnpike which ran from Grayson County into Wytheville through Smith Hollow and Little Walkers Creek. then into Raleigh County.


 On January 29, 1906, Martin Hill and wife Elizabeth conveyed their land to Newton Pauley with the condition that he (Newton) would care for and maintain the Hills in sickness and health during their natural lives, provide a comfortable home at their dwelling house where Hill now resides—provide clothing, food, medical attention and a Christian burial. The land was located between Poplar Spring Branch to the east and the Raleigh Grayson Turnpike to the west.[55]

 

On January 26, 1876, Nancy Hounshell sold 100 acres to G. W. Hancock being the east end of the 605 acre grant for William Hounshell.[56]

 

Isaac Patterson, Wythe County, 124 acres, 30 November 1844. Grants # 96, pg. 59.

On the waters of Walkers Creek on the north bank of Little Creek adjoining John Crockett, decd…East of James Patterson’s path…in a draught near Draper’s path. (No other land records found. May have reverted to NationalForest).

 

John Leedy’s land was an interesting case for research because the original land grant belonged to Robert Pollard. It is not listed here because the grant was for 75,000 acres covering a great deal of the Southwest Virginia area. Robert Pollard was awarded a grant in Wythe County on October 1, 1794 “…by virtue of a Land Office Treasury Warrant Number eight hundred and five, a certain tract or parcel of land containing seventy-five thousand acres by survey bearing the date the twenty sixth day of November one thousand seventeen hundred and ninety four, lying and being in the county of Wythe on the waters of East River, Bluestone River, Clinch River and Wolf Creek…”.  Apparently, some of the 75,000 acres included parts of Little Walkers Creek..[57]

 

On January 14, 1806, William Patterson of Wythe County sold to George Helm of Montgomery County 60, 000 acres of land “…being part of a survey made by Robert Pollard containing 75,000 acres bearing date by survey August the first one thousand seven hundred and ninety four…”.[58]

 

George Helm sold part of this land to John Shufflebarger on October 9, 1809. “…containing seven hundred acres…lying and being in Wythe county on little Walkers creek the waters of New River being part of a survey of 75,000 acres, sold by Hugh McGavock collector of the Direct Tax, for the taxes due thence and unpaid and William Patterson became a purchaser who sold the same or an interest therein to the said Helm…”[59] This tract of land would later become part of Pulaski County.

 

Helm sold a total of 350 acres to John Leedy on December 4, 1813; the land lying south of where John Leedy lived…”that of which bought of John Crockett it ran a course with Leedy’s land…and was corner to Allford’s land”.

 

In 1844, “John Leedy of the County of Wythe and State of Virginia of the one part and Casper Yost high Sheriff of Wythe County and State aforesaid of the other part Witnesseth that whereas the said John Leedy has been taken and is now in the custody of the high Sheriff of Wythe County on a Writ of Capias and [illegible] suit out of the Clerks Office of the County Court of Wythe in the name of John A. Simmerman for the sum of $3.75 with interest from the 4th day of April 1824 till paid and $1.34 costs and whereas the said John Leedy being unable to discharge the debt aforesaid; and wishing to avail himself of the benefit of an insolvent Debtor. Beginning at or upon the partition line between the said Leedy land and the land of Samuel Crockett Decd… a corner of Alford’s and Leedy’s land and with his line to the beginning. Twenty-five acres as above named to be laid off on the north side bot. of John Crockett and after the special direction of said Leedy but neverless to include the house and part of a field in which the said Leedy lived at the time he purchased said land of one George Helm…”.[60]

 

Casper Yost late high Sheriff of the County of Wythe and State of Virginia to Samuel Cassell the 16th day of June 1849. “…which said tracts of land was advertised and the said Samuel Cassell became the purchaser thereof…”.[61]

 

James H. Hounshell, Wythe County, 431 acres, 30 August 1845. Grants # 97, pg. 57.

On Spur branch, waters of Walkers Creek on the north side of Long Spur…with a line of James Patterson’s survey.

 

John, John A. and James Jones, Wythe County, 182 acres, 19 February 1845. Grants # 99, pg. 594. On the waters of Walkers little creek…crossing Hearns old path…corner to a survey of 359 acres made by John Crockett.

 

John A. Jones and Nancy his wife to Margaret Crockett 23 June 1847 in Wythe County, 182 acres on Walkers little creek…crossing Hearns old path…corner to a survey of 350 acres made by John Crockett.[62]

 

Madison Shelton, Wythe County, 180 1/8 acres, 30 November 1850. Grants # 104, pg. 403. On Walkers Little Creek corner to the Jones survey; also a corner to a 350 acre survey made by John Crockett.

 

Madison Shelton and wife Elsey his wife sold this land to James Collins in 1859.[63]

 

Madison Shelton married Elizabeth Ann Halsey on March 14, 1841 in Wythe County. She was the daughter of Stephen Halsey and Margaret Walraven.[64]  Madison Shelton supposedly murdered his brother-in-law, John Trigg Halsey.[65]  There is no evidence of this murder in any Wythe County court record. The Shelton family later moved to Knox County, Kentucky.[66]

 

Bennett King, Sr., Wythe County, 175 acres, 30 June 1846. Grants # 97, pg. 282.

On Walkers Little Creek, corner to John Crockett’s

land.

 

Bennett King, Sr., Wythe County, 64 acres, 30 June 1847, Grants # 110, pg. 149.

On Walkers Little Creek near Ravens Cliff and top of the Spur.

 

Bennett King wrote his will September 1, 1857. It was probated Monday, December 14, 1857. Mentions sons David, James W., William G, Bennett and Solomon. Daughters Hannah Ritter, Nancy Davis and Mary Sublett. Grandson James, infant son of James W. and wife Sarah.

 

John Sutton, Wythe County, 64 acres, 30 June 1848. Grants # 100, pg. 288.

On Walkers Little Creek.

No other information found on this land.

 

Allen T. Newberry, Wythe County, 100 acres, 1 December 1857. Grants # 114, pg. 372.

On the south side of Walkers Little Creek.

                                                 

John M. Leedy, Wythe County, 220 acres, 2 August 1858. Grants # 115, pg. 242.

On Walkers Little Creek… corner of Crockett’s land.

(No other records found.)

 

Moses Akers, Bland County, 96 acres, 15 November 1879. Grants # 119, pg. 428.

On Walkers Little Creek to his own corner and line to Abram Wampler’s land…corner to the “old Crockett survey”.

 

John G. Pauley and John Havens, Bland County, 200 acres, 5 July 1881. Grants # 119, pg. 610.

On the south side of Walkers big mountain and the waters of Walkers Little Creek corner of lands of Robert Wyrick…crossing Newberry’s corner.

 

W. N. Harman, Bland County, 2,832 acres, 7 July 1890. Grants # 121, pg. 499.

On the waters of Walkers Little Creek …south side of Walkers big mountain…above the house of Addison Davis and a corner of the Pulaski County line…corner to the lands of Henry Davis on north hill opposite Charles Parsell’s house…with the Brally lines…crossing the Crockett path…down the north side of the mountain…with line of W. C. Newberry corner to A. Z. Harman’s line.

 

 

Long Spur Branch

 

Spur Branch is a branch of Little Walkers Creek entering “Little Creek” about one half mile west of the Bland/Pulaski County line. The Spur Branch community is a long, narrow valley separated from the Little Walkers Creek community by the Long Spur Ridge. Several families still reside there.

 

Land Grants from the Virginia Land Office Patents and Grants, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia:

 

John Draper, Jr., Wythe County, 340 acres, 29 March 1800. Grants # 43, pg. 536.

Walkers Little Creek…a corner to Shannon’s survey…south side of the long spur…by Draper’s path. (This land islocated on Spur Branch and Little Walkers Creek and located what is now Pulaski and Bland Counties, Virginia.)

 

James H. Hounshell, Wythe County, 227 acres, 5 June 1844. Grants # 96, pg. 58. On the Spur branch, waters of Walkers Creek beginning at four white oaks at Draper’s path…above the Big Spring…crossing Little Hiram Davis’s path.

 

James Patterson, Wythe County, 77 acres, 30 November 1844. Grants # 96, pg. 60. On Spur Branch, waters of Walkers Creek.

 

James H. Hounshell, Wythe County, 431 acres, 30 August

1845. Grants # 97, pg. 57.

On Spur branch, waters of Walkers Creek on the north side

of Long Spur…with a line of James Patterson’s survey.

                              

 

The Draper Tract

 

John Draper’s survey was located in what is now Pulaski and Bland Counties. It contained approximately 306 actual acres even though the grant specified 340 acres “more or less”. Surveying during the 1800’s was not very precise. As surveying techniques became more precise, acreage and boundary descriptions changed in the deeds describing more exact locations and listing adjoining land owners.

 

John Draper and wife Jane sold their Little Walker Creek land to John Alford on November 12, 1811. This may be John Draper, Jr. who married Jane Crockett. Jane Crockett was the daughter of Samuel and Jean Armstrong Crockett. Jane Crockett Draper died about 1815.[67]

 

John Alford is listed in the 1815 Wythe County tax list as follows:

“One farm on Little Walkers Creek, 340 acres having thereon one “cabben,” one blacksmith shop, one loom house, smoke house, corn crib, valued at $800”.[68]

 

John Alford and his wife Peggy of Giles County sold part of this land to James Davis in 1829 “…containing two hundred and eighty acres more or less…”.[69]

 

James Davis and wife Rachel sold to Isaac Patterson in 1833 “…Walkers Little Creek containing one hundred acres…”.[70]

 

James Davis and wife Rachel sold to James C. Overstreet “…both of the county of Giles… containing one hundred and eighty three acres, and being the lower end of the tract of two hundred and eighty three acres, which I bought from John Alford…”.[71]

 

On Thursday September the 18th 1845, a court case arose involving James Davis, Hiram Davis, Isaac Patterson and James Overstreet, John Alford & James Hoge complainants –vs –Hiram Davis & others defendants.

“This cause comes on this 18th day of September 1845 to be heard upon the bill and amended bills. The answer of James Overstreet the exhibits filed & examination of witnesses the exception thereto which are overruled by the court . It being of the opinion that the interest of said witness is equal between the parties and it appearing that the subpoena has been returned executed more than two months on the defendants James Davis, Hiram Davis and Isaac Patterson, and they still failing to appear & answer the bills the same as to them is taken for confessed, and it appearing to the satisfaction of the court that the order of publication against the defendant John Alford has been duly posted and published and he still failing to appear & answer the amended bill as for confessed as to him. It is herefore adjudged, ordered and decreed that the complainant James Hoge recover against the Defendants Hiram Davis and James Davis two hundred dollars with interest from the first day of September 1832 until paid and the costs of this suit. And it appearing to the satisfaction of the Court that the said sum of two hundred dollars is part of the purchase money of the land in the bill mentioned. And the court being satisfied that the defendants Overstreet and Patterson were purchasers with full notice that the said two hundred dollars constituted a part of the purchase money of said land and that it had been paid. It is therefore adjudged, ordered and decreed that unless the said sum of money with its interest and the costs of this suit be paid on or before the first day of January 1846. Charles A. Bowyer who is hereby appointed a commissioner for that purpose do sell the land mentioned or so much thereof as shall sufficient to pay the said sum of two hundred dollars with interest as aforesaid and the costs of this suit to the highest bidder upon a credit of six months taking bond with good security for the payment of the purchase money having first advertised the time and place of sale for four weeks at the front door of Wythe Court house, and for the same length of time in a newspaper published at Wytheville, and that he make a report of his proceedings to the next term of this Circuit Court.”[72]

 

Hiram Davis lived in Giles County on Walkers Creek, Mechanicsburg area. He died before 1844 as his estate was appraised January 22, 1844 in Giles County.[73]

 

James Davis and wife Rachel lived in both Wythe and Giles according to the deeds filed at the Wythe and Giles Courthouses. The only James Davis found in Giles is in the 1810 Giles census. There were several James Davis’s listed in Wythe before 1850. Since the early censuses [before 1850) only list heads of household, it is difficult to determine if one of these James’s were the same as mentioned above. James Davis evidently died before 1850 as his wife, Rachel Kennison Davis, is listed with their son, Hiram Davis in the 1850 Daviess County, Missouri census.

 

Hiram Davis married Nancy Bateman on 23 October 1817 in Montgomery County, Virginia. They migrated to Missouri in the mid 1840’s.

 

On the 13th day of May 1846 between “…Charles A. Bowyer commissioner of the County of Wythe and State of Virginia of the one part and James Hoge of the County of Pulaski…And whereas by another decree of the said Court pronounced on the 17th day of April 1846 the said Bowyer having made a report his proceedings the same was affirmed a commissioner to make a conveyance of the said land to the said James Hoge… doth hereby grant, bargain, sell and convey unto the said James Hoge the said tract or parcel of land to wit: a tract of land containing two hundred and eighty acres more or less lying & being in the County of Wythe & State of Virginia on little walkers Creek and is the same conveyed by John Alford & wife to James Davis by deed bearing date the 3rd day of October 1829… purchaser at the price of four hundred and fifty dollars that being the highest and best bid offeredfor the same.”[74]

 

Mustard Family

On the 24th day of June 1848 James Hoge sold to Joshua Mustard the same tract of land “…it being the same which was conveyed to the said James Hoge by deed bearing date the 13th day of May 1846… containing two hundred and eighty acres be the same more or less, lying & being on little Walkers creek the whole or the greater part being thereof in the county of Wythe…”[75]

 

This land was located in the area of what is now the intersection of Little Walker’s Creek Road and the Spur Branch Road and it extended into what is now Pulaski County.                                                                                          

In 1857, Joshua Mustard and Elizabeth his wife sold part of the above tract to Samuel C. Davis, no acreage listed, but estimated at about 110 acres.[76]        

 

Joshua Mustard was the son of James Mustard and Sarah Munsey. He was born about 1796 in Montgomery County, Virginia. He married Elizabeth “Betsey” Davis on 15 November 1824 in Giles County. Elizabeth was born about 1806 to William and Lovica Davis. Joshua is said to have died 07 March 1862 in Bland. The estate appraisement and sale bill were recorded on August 1, 1862. The appraisers were Anselm Brawley, John Mustard and Samuel C. Davis. Buyers at the sale were Russell Patton, W. G. Crockett, David King, Col. Crockett, Nick Wynn, James W. White, W. Mustard, John Mustard, Claib Curtice, Tim Hamilton, J. B. Rutherford, Samuel C. Davis, Lewis Johnston, W. T. Rorrer, A. Brawley, David Millirons, David Kent, Z. Cecil, M. Hunter, William Hunter, James H. Mustard, J. B. C. Rutherford and John C. Crockett.[77]

 

Joshua and Elizabeth’s children were:

1.        William Thomas born about 1830 married Paulina Tynes. William joined the CSA Army     Company F, 45th  Regiment. Died in Confederate Prison, Camp Morton, Indiana on 19 February 1865.

2.        John born about 1834 married Mary Parsons.

3.       Lavica born about 1837.

4.       James Harvey born about 1839

5.       Sarah born 20 August 1843 married Thomas B. Wygal.

6.       Minerva Jane born 30 January 1845. Never married but had six children.

7.       Katherine born about 1848 married Obadiah Jones, son of James J. Jones and Charlotte Hancock.

8.       Joshua Nye born October 1852 married Mary Elizabeth Jones, daughter of James J. Jones and Charlotte Hancock.

 

From court and land documents, Joshua Mustard did not live on Spur Branch but probably used the Spur Branch land for farming or possibly rented it out. It is important to note that Henry Davis later bought the Mustard tract and did live on Spur Branch as did some of his children.

 

On June 26, 1875 Elizabeth Mustard conveyed to James H. Mustard and John J. Mustard…” all her right, title, interest and privilege in and to a certain tract or parcel of land being her dower in the estate of her late husband Joshua Mustard, lying on Walkers Little Creek… in consideration of one mare in hand paid and twenty five dollars per annum during her natural life…”[78]

                                                                                                              

Elizabeth Davis Mustard is said to have died in Pulaski County on 15 September 1881. She is listed in the 1880 Pulaski County census with her daughter and son-in-law, Tom B. Wygal.

 

 

The Hounshell Tract

 

The Hounshell surveys contained approximately 763 acres encompassing most of the Spur Branch area. The land grants listed a total of 658 acres “more or less”.

 

In 1849, “James H. Hounshell of Carroll County sold to John Smith of Wythe County land granted to said Hounshell one for 227 acres the other for 431 acres making in all an aggregate of 658 acres…”.[79]

 

On May 13, 1854, John Smith and wife Sarah to Anselm Brawley the same land.[80]

 

Brawley Family
(often spelled Bralley/Brally)
 
John Brawley was born about 1740 in Cecil County, Maryland. He married Mary Guy about 1764 in Cecil County. John died about 1798 in Wythe County, Virginia. John and Mary had six known children: James married Hannah Smyth; Barbara married Joseph Hoge 09 November 1790 in Montgomery County, Virginia; Martha. Married Benjamin Rogers 24 March 1788 in Montgomery County; John married Martha Hoge 08 February 1793 in Montgomery County; Mary married John Rogers 19 August 1793 in Wythe County, Virginia; Elizabeth married John Wooden 02 March 1797 in Greenbrier County, Virginia.

 

James and Hannah Smyth Brawley had eight children: James, John Smyth; Anselm, Jonathan; Louisa Adams, Elizabeth, Samuel Guy and Julia.

 

Anselm married Susannah Hutsell 22 March 1831 in Wythe County, Virginia.[81]  She was the daughter of Jacob and Elizabeth Hutsell. From the 1850 Giles County census, he and Susannah had eight children:

1.       George T. born about 1832 married Emma Griffith on 27 September 1868 in Pike County, Missouri. Listed in the 1870 and 1880 Pike County, Missouri as a physician. No children listed.

2.        Elizabeth H. born about 1834 married Thompson H. Bussey on 13 May 1852 in Giles County. Children:

2.1.      Hester Ann married John Stinson 04 March 1874 in Bland County.

2.2.    George.

2.3.    James.

2.4.      Sarah F.

3.        Julia Ann born about 1836 married John Bogle, Jr. on 03 September 1857 in Wythe County. Children:

3.1.    Margaret Susanna.

3.2.      Sarah Elizabeth

3.3.      Victoria Jane.

3.4.    Luemma Isobel.

3.5.    Lucinda Catherine.

3.6.    Joseph Longstreet.

3.7.    George William.

3.8.    John Lockhart

4.        James born about 1838, enlisted in Company D, 45th Infantry Regiment as a Sergeant on 29 May 1861 in Wytheville, Virginia and died of wounds on 06 October 1864.[82]

5.        Sarah P. born on 29 May 1843 married Moses Akers on 19 October 1859 in Wythe County.

6.        Susannah born about 1847 married George Newton Pegram.

7.        Ariminta born about 1849.

8.       Margaret Emily born on 19 October 1855 in Wythe County.[83]

 

Anselm Brawley was born in about 1800[84] and died before 25 January 1868 as his estate was appraised then.

 

Appraisal Bill of personal estate of Anselm Bralley, deceased, by Samuel C. Davis, J. T. Mustard & J. H. Mustard, dated January 25, 1868. Sale bill of estate of Anselm Bralley, deceased. Buyers were: Solomon King, James H. Mustard, Harvey R. Mustard, Washington King, Stanford Melvin, [illegible] Hendrick, Moses Akers Sr., Moses Akers, Jr.., Thomas Mustard, Susan Bralley, Dandridge Akers, Stephen Halsey, Allen W. Sublett, John Bogle, David King, John Harman, John T. Mustard, Henry Mustard, & George W. Suiter. Certified by John Bogle and Moses Akers, administrators of Anselm Brawley, deceased. Recorded February 13, 1868.[85]

 

Susannah Hutsell Brawley died between 1870-1880.[86] They are probably buried somewhere on Spur Branch inunmarked graves.

 

Anselm Brawley’s heirs [did not list names] eventually sold this land to John Pegram, David Y. Hamblin and John Parsell. Evidently, Pegram, Hamblin and Parsell had some difficulty getting the titles from the Brawley heirs. In the Bland County, Virginia Deed Book 3, three deeds were recorded on June 14, 1876 for the three men above. “…Between Samuel W. Williams Special Commissioner of the first part and John H. Pegram of the second part. Witnesseth that whereas by a decree rendered on the [blank] Day of May 1876 by the Circuit court of Bland County, Virginia in the chancery cause therein pending in the name of A. Bralleys Administrators and A. Bralley’s heirs amongst other things… convey to said party of the second part that part of the real estate in the bill and proceedings mentioned described in statement in writing signed by George N. Pegram and referred to in said decree as having been sold by said George N. to said John H. Pegram… this deed witnesseth that for and in consideration of the premises aforesaid doth hereby grant and convey unto said party of the second part that part of that certain tract or parcel of land lying and being on the Spur Branch waters of Walkers Little Creek known as the Bralley tract, the part hereby conveyed contains 300 acres more or less on the west end of said tract…”.[87]

 

Hutsell Family

 

Johann George Hutsell was born 04 October 1711 in Pfaffenhofen, Germany. He married Anna Maria Magdalena Schweinhardt 17 June 1739 in Maryland. The marriage was recorded by Reverend John Casper Stoever as George Hutzel of Monocacy, Maryland and Anna Maria Magdalena Schweinhardt. Johann Georg Hutzel's name varies on documents: Joh. Georg, Johann Georg, John George, Hans George, and George. Arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on August 29, 1730 on the ship "Thistle” from the Palatinate with his older brother Ludwig. Johann died 2 May 1778 in Frederick County, Maryland buried in the Churchyard of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Frederick County, Maryland. Johann and Anna had 12 children: Margaret, Susanna, George, Johannes, Johann Peter, Johann Matthaus; Ludwig, Jacob, Anna Maria, Michael and Gabriel.Ludwig (often called Lewis) Hutsell born 15 July 1753 in Frederick County, Maryland. He accompanied his two older brothers through the Shenandoah Valley in his late teens. Ludwig married Eva Davis, daughter of John Davis and Mary (many Hutsell/Davis researchers believe her maiden name was Hutsell). John Davis also accompanied the three brothers into Virginia. John was instrumental in forming the town of Evansham (now Wytheville), Wythe

County, Virginia. Ludwig had ten children and many moved on to Tennessee and Kentucky. Jacob was the third child born to Ludwig and Eva Davis Hutsell. Jacob died between 1832 and 11 March 1833; his will was probated 11 March 1833 in Wythe County.

 

The Patterson Tract

 

James Patterson was from Crockett’s Cove, Wythe County, Virginia. His will stated “…Son James Harvey had already received a horse, bridle, saddle, and gun, but his father devised to him 77 acres on Little Walker Creek…”.[88]

 

Land Grant description exactly as written (The Library of Virginia):

James McDowell Esquire, Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia

To All To Whom these Presents shall come—Greetings: Know Ye, That in Conformity with a Survey made on the 15th day of May one thousand eight hundred and forty four by virture of a Land Treasury Warrant. N: 15308 there is granted by the said Commonwealth, unto James Patterson a certain tract or parcel of land containing seventy seven acres lying and being in Wythe County on the Spur Branch waters of Walkers Creek and bounded as follows viz: Beginning at two chestnut oaks and a chestnut on the north side of a ridge corner to a survey for James H. Hounshell thence with a line thereof N 10 east 156 poles to hickory ssplings near the head of a drain on the south side of a spur thence S 5 W 80 poles to two red oaks and a maple on the north side of a spur thence S 89 W 132 poles to the beginning with appurtenances.

To have and to hold said tract or parcel of Land, with all its appurtenances, to the said James Patterson And his heirs forever.

            In witness whereof, the said James McDowell Esquire Governor of  the Commonwealth of Virginia, hath hereonto set his hand, and caused the Lesser Seal of the said Commonwealth to be affixed, at Richmond, on the thirteeth day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty four and of the Commonwealth the sixty ninth.  Ja McDowell


[1] 1815 Wythe County, VA Tax List.

[2] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 138.

[3] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 4, p. 122.

[4] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 23, p. 145.

[5] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 30, p. 356.

[6] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 37, p. 216.

[7] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 41, p. 106.

[8] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 7, p. 154.

[9] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 214; Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p.173.

[10] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 7, p. 153.

[11] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 5, p. 194.

[12] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 36.

[13] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 180.

[14] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, Pg. 320

[15] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 416.

[16] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 5, p. 135.

[17] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 633.

[18] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 3, p. 60.

[19] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 10, p. 372.

[20] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 21, p. 51.

[21] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 27, p. 439.

[22] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 204.

[23] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 21, p. 275.

[24] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2., p. 63.

[25] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 406.

[26] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2, p. 240.

[27] Library of Virginia, Richmond, VA; Land Office Grants No. 31, 1793-1795, p. 379 (Reel 97).

[28] Bland County, VA Deed Book 5, 687.

[29] Library of Virginia, Richmond, VA; Land Office Grants No. 120, 1883-1887, p. 454 (Reel 186).

[30] Pulaski County, VA Will Book 1, p. 319.

[31] Pulaski County Deed Book 2, p. 531.

[32] Pulaski County Deed Book 1, p. 239.

[33] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 1, p. 169.

[34] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 1, p. 404.

[35] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 1, p. 407.

[36] Pulaski County, VA Deed Book 2. p. 454.

[37] Pulaski County, VA Will Book 3, p. 229.

[38] Pulaski County, VA Will Book 3, p. 229.

[39] Kegley, Western Waters, Volume III, Part 2, p. 623; J. D. Crockett, Crockett Family History, Unpublished.

[40] J. D. Crockett, Crockett Family History.

[41] Kegley, Western Waters, Volume III, Part 2, p. 627.

[42] Wythe County, VA Will Book 1, p. 44.

[43] Bland County, VA Deed Book 3, p. 68.

[44] Bland County, VA Deed Book 4, p. 34.

[45] Bland County, VA Deed Book 4, p. 236.

[46] Bland County, VA Deed Book 4, p. 347.

[47] Bland County, VA Deed Book5, p. 225.

[48] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 6, p. 450.

[49] Kegley, Southwest Virginia Tax Assessments, 1815, p. 134.

[50] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 10, p. 106

[51] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 12, p. 180.

[52] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 12, p. 653

[53] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 19, p. 486

[54] Bland County, VA Deed Book 3, p. 514.

[55] Bland County, VA Deed Book 9, p. 288.

[56] Bland County, VA Deed Book 4, p. 15.

[57] Virginia Land Office Patents and Grants and Northern Neck Grants and Surveys; Library of Virginia.

[58] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 4, p. 321.

[59] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 5, p. 194.

[60] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 16, p. 364.

[61] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 18, p. 68.

[62] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 17, p. 657.

[63] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 21, p. 511.

[64] Rebecca Sowers’ Research.

[65] Halsey, Richard Jay, One Branch of the Halsey Family.

[66] Rebecca Sowers’ Research.

[67] J. D. Crockett, Unpublished, Crockett Family History.

[68] Kegley, Southwest Virginia Tax Assessments, 1815, p. 112.

[69] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 11, p. 349.

[70] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 12, p. 650.

[71] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 12, p. 650.

[72] Wythe County, VA Chancery Book 2; 1835-1853, p. 389.

[73] Giles County, VA Will Book B, p. 415

[74] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 17, p. 118.

[75] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 17, p. 624.

[76] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 20, p. 809.

[77] Bland County, VA Will Book 1, pg 86-87.

[78] Bland County, VA Deed Book 3, p. 368

[79] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 18, p. 388.

[80] Wythe County, VA Deed Book 19, p. 667.

[81] Wythe County, Virginia Marriage Book 1.

[82] The Virginia Regimental Histories Series. 45 vols. Lynchburg: Howard, 1987.

[83] Wythe County, VA Births and Deaths, Wythe County Courthouse.

[84] 1850 Giles County, VA Census.

[85] Bland County, VA Will Book 1, p. 158-159

[86] 1880 Bland County, VA Census

[87] Bland County, VA Deed Book 3, p. 444.

[88] Wythe County, VA Will Book 7, p. 217.

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