Phillips/Phipps and Poythress?

As numerous other posts have suggested, a strong link seems to have existed between the Jamestown, Norfolk, Williamsburg, and eastern James River area of Virginia early on, as far as the family is concerned, with Surry County, Virginia slightly later. Most likely, it would seem, the Phipps presence in Sussex County a bit later was connected.

Phipps records, of course, show up in Albemarle Parish, which was first in Surry County and then in Sussex County. Connections seem to then link Albemarle Parish with Brunswick County. Adjacent to both Surry and Sussex Counties today is Prince George County, and some early family and associated surname references point to King George County.

The last post referred to a John Phillips in Halifax County, with some evidence that he could have been a Phipps, Fips, Phips, etc., however spelled. It would appear that individuals who went by “Phips” and “Fips” did move into this general area from the general Brunswick, Sussex, and Surry area.

Meredith Poythress and his wife Edith sold land in Brunswick County to James Phipps on 24 Jan 1784. Then on 6 Oct 1787, James Phipps sold this land to George Johnson. In 1782 in Brunswick County, according to another source, Thomas Poythress paid taxes on land in that county. By 1787, part of that land belonged to James Phipps.

Whether these two sources are referring to the same land or not is unclear without consulting the actual deed records.

Because of this Brunswick County Phipps/Poythress connection, it might be significant that an earlier Virginia land grant was awarded to John “Phillips” in Prince George County, adjacent to a Poythress.

This was a 1751 grant of 154 acres on the south side of what was called “second Swamp.” This land, according to the grant, was bounded in part by what was described in the grant as “Poythress’s Line.”

According to the second of the two sources cited, the Poythress family was involved in both Brunswick and King George Counties. Today King George County is adjacent to Sussex, Surry, and Charles City Counties, all of which we’ve discussed in the past with regard to our family.

On various occasions, this blog, including recent posts, has discussed the Epps/Eppes family. That family was in Charles City County early (by the 1690s). It may be significant – at least, it’s certainly interesting – that a web page about this family begins with references to the Poythress family.

The Phillips wiki refers to a Poythress, John Poythress, of Prince George County receiving a Virginia land grant in 1715 for transporting two persons. One of them was John Phillips. This was land on the Meherrin River, a location which has come up at various points in Phipps research.

That wiki refers to John Poythress as owning land adjacent to a “John Phillips I,” as he’s referred to, on the south side of Second Swamp in Prince George County. This would surely be the same John Phillips we referred to above.

The same wiki page says that other persons named Phillips were in Isle of Wight County around that time period. Isle of Wight is another location that has come up in Phipps research in the past.

We noted in the past that a “Phibbs” family of Ireland appeared to also go by Philips or Phillips, as well as Phipps. It really didn’t seem to matter. Was this Phillips family of early Virginia actually a Phipps, Phips, Fipps, Fips, Phibbs, Phripp, Phypps, etc., etc.?


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