Samuel Phipps, Father of Samuel Phipps, 1782

An SAR list refers to Samuel Phipps as having served as a private in Capt. James McDaniel’s Company of the Montgomery County, Virginia militia. This list is abstracted in New River Notes, where McDaniel is shown along with both Samuel Phipps and Samuel Phipps, Sr.

Samuel Phipps or Phips, Jr. shows up in Montgomery County with George Reeves or Reaves, who became his father in law, then both men show up in Wilkes County, North Carolina records. Finally, Samuel appears in Ashe County, North Carolina records while George Reaves appears in records in adjacent Grayson County, Virginia, with Samuel (along with his wife Elizabeth (Reeves) Phips) also showing up in Grayson County as an heir of George Reaves when the latter died.

In the militia list, the Samuel who married Elizabeth (“Betty”) Reeves and who died in 1854 in Ashe County, North Carolina would have to be the younger of the two men. That’s because he wouldn’t have been old enough in 1782 to have fathered a son named Samuel who would be old enough to be on the militia list.

Assuming that the two men are father and son, then the older Samuel would have to be the father of the Samuel who married Betty Reeves. That’s despite completely unfounded claims of a “Joseph Phipps/Mary Romal” parentage.

Does inclusion in a militia list necessarily denote actual military service, however? Perhaps neither man did anything other than muster. Samuel, Jr. never applied for a pension.

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