Remarkable Virginia and North Carolina Connections

Although it’s not entirely clear which parts of the timeline below connect, some parts obviously do. Where connections are not clear, at least some options for future research are suggested, which could eventually lead to some concrete facts.

One of the most intriguing facets of this timeline is the presence of a John Phipps who was living in Warren County, North Carolina while buying property in Amelia County, Virginia. Amelia County is where John Phipps, the Revolutionary War soldier, moved after having been born in Charles City County, Virginia and before moving to Orange County, North Carolina.

Warren County, North Carolina had been created just a few years previously from Bute County, North Carolina, which is where we earlier found a Joseph Fipps or Phipps who was described as being “of” Brunswick County, Virginia. The John just mentioned was described as being “of” Warren County, North Carolina in an Amelia County, Virginia deed.

Other connections and potential connections are discussed below. Many of them have to do with Amelia and Charles City Counties in Virginia.

We’ve mentioned Brunswick County, Virginia repeatedly – that county that has come up over and over, a surprising number of times. Without attempting to trace part of the family back to Brunswick County, it’s still resurfaced with surprising frequency, almost as though all roads lead to Brunswick County.

In 1735, a new county was created from parts of Brunswick County and Prince George County, and that was Amelia County. Today, Amelia County is situated a bit east of the center of the state of Virginia, west of the Chesapeake Bay and Charles City County.

The Virginia Company had established Charles Cittie, later Charles City, in 1619 as four of its “incorporations” or “boroughs.” In 1634, the borough of Charles City became the shire of Charles City. Then finally, it became Charles City County in 1643.

A couple posts back we focused on John Phipps, a Revolutionary War veteran who was born in Charles City County but then moved to Amelia County. From there, he moved into Orange County, North Carolina. Additional records were discussed which pertain to Charles City County. Since then, more records have surfaced regarding Amelia County.

How they piece together and what they all mean is unclear. One factor that doesn’t help is the recurrence of the name John in the family. Without the family being more inventive in assigning given names to their children, it’s difficult at this point to determine how many individuals named John we’re dealing with. How do the following fit together? What does all this spell out?

  • 19 Nov 1742 O.S., Amelia Co., VA | Frederick Ford was named surveyor of a road. Although it appears that there were at least two persons of this name in the county around the same time, perhaps this was the same one who appears in the 1786 will, listed below.
  • 23 Feb 1747, Amelia Co., VA | Edward Harris, who was a planter, deeded 100 acres on Harris’s Creek to Bartholomew Austin. The deed was witnessed by Nathaniel Harris (Edward’s son), John Fips, and Robert Gresham. Note that the immigrant surveyor John Phips worked as a surveyor out of Jamestown with a Harris, as was the case, it is said, with his son John. The deed was witnessed by John Fips. Another witness was Robert Gresham; an Ambrose Gresham was co-heir with George Reaves in an Eppes estate in 1793 in Halifax County; George Reaves of Wilkes County, North Carolina was the father-in-law of Samuel Phips of Ashe County, North Carolina.
  • 8 Mar 1747, Amelia Co., VA | Edward Harris and his wife Unity of Amelia County deeded property to their son Nathaniel. The deed was witnessed by John Fips, Robert Gresham, and Charles Harris.
  • 16 Mar 1747, Amelia Co., VA | Edward Harris of Amelia County wrote a will in which he names his wife Unity and his son Nathaniel Harris. The will was witnessed by the same three men as in the 8 March 1747 deed: John Fips, Robert Gresham, and Charles Harris. The will mentions slaves of Harris. Nathaniel Harris later (18 March 1747) sold two slaves to Robert Gresham which he had inherited from his father.
  • 16 Mar 1747, Amelia Co., VA | On the same date as his will, Edward Harris of Amelia County deeded land on both sides of Harrises or Harris’ Creek in Amelia County to Nathaniel Harris. This deed was witnessed by John Fips, Robert Gresham, and Charles Harris, the same three men who had witnessed the will and the earlier deed.
  • 1749, Amelia Co., VA | Jno. Phips in tax list.
  • 1750, Amelia Co., VA | John Phips in tax list.
  • 26 Sep 1751 (O.S.), Amelia Co., VA | John Phips, along with a number of others, was ordered to work on “the old Roling Road.” The road led from near Randolph’s Mill, across Vaughan’s Creek at the old ford, to the mouth of Sawney’s Creek. James Walker (perhaps a relative of Tandy Walker? – see past posts) was named surveyor of the road. Notice mentions of Vaughan’s Creek below.
  • 1751, Amelia Co., VA | Jno. Phips in tax list.
  • 1752, Amelia Co., VA | Jno. Phips in tax list.
  • About 1753, Charles City Co., VA | John Phipps, the Revolutionary War soldier, was born.
  • 25 Apr 1753, Amelia Co., VA | A deed from William Hill to Andrew McAdoe or Mackadoe was witnessed by John Phipps. This was for 200 acres on branches of Vaughans Creek, along with “all houses.”
  • 25 Apr 1753, Amelia Co., VA | A deed from William Hill to Robert Black was witnessed by John Phips. This was for 50 acres on branches of Vaughans Creek, along with, again, “all houses.” (How many houses did he have?)
  • 1760, Granville Co., NC | A Granville County, North Carolina will of Esaiah or Isaiah Phipps mentions his son of the same name and mentions a plantation he owned in Hampshire County. Note that part of Granville County became Bute County (see below) in 1764. In 1760, Granville County was immediately east of Orange County, North Carolina.
  • 1762, Orange Co., NC | An Orange County, North Carolina land grant was made to a John Phipps.
  • 1762, Orange Co., NC | A John Phipps acted as a surveyor’s chain carrier in Orange County, North Carolina.
  • 1768, Orange Co., NC | An undated Regulator petition (so-called “advertisement”) was signed around this time in Orange County, North Carolina by Joseph, John, and James Phipps.
  • 12 Feb 1770?, Bute Co., NC | By 1768, the now-extinct county of Bute was created out of part of Granville County. Esaiah/Isaiah Phipps had written his will in Granville County in 1760. Joseph Fips or Fipps of Brunswick County, Virginia purchased land in Bute County, North Carolina. This is from a deed dated 12 February, with the year not stated, but found between deeds dated 1770. This deed was from James Ransom, Jr. to Joseph Fips or Fipps, with the latter stated as being “of” Brunswick County, Virginia. This involved 300 acres adjacent to Willie Jones. James Ransom, Jr. is mentioned again in 1771, below.
  • 5 Sep 1770, Charles City Co., VA | John Phipps, orphan of James Phipps, with John Dudley as his guardian.
  • 1771, Bute Co., NC | James Ransom, Jr. acknowledged a deed to Joseph Fips in Bute County, North Carolina. This was the same Joseph Fips who elsewhere was described as being of Brunswick County, Virginia; see 1770 and 14 August 1772.
  • 4 Sep 1771, Charles City Co., VA | John Phipps and William Phipps, orphans, with John Dudley as their guardian.
  • 9 Aug 1772, Bute Co., NC | Joseph Fips/Fipps and wife Sarah, described as being “of” Brunswick County, Virginia, sold land to Douglass Wilkins and “Edmund” Wilkins (Edmond in the next record below). This was for 300 acres adjoining Willie Jones, so presumably was the same land which they had purchased on, apparently, 12 February 1770 (above).
  • 14 Aug 1772, Bute Co., NC | Joseph Fipps and his wife Sarah acknowledged a Bute County, North Carolina deed to Douglass and “Edmond” Wilkins. (He was “Edmund” in the record of the 9th of August). Note that in another Bute County record dated 1770, this Joseph is referred to as being “of” Brunswick County, Virginia.
  • 2 Jan 1773, Charles City Co., VA | John Phipps, orphan of James Phipps, with James Dudley, rather than John Dudley, as his orphan.
  • 1774, Guilford Co., NC  | At the time of the Regulator petition (1768, above), Guilford County didn’t exist. Joseph, John, and James Phipps, presumably the same as those who signed the Regulator petition in or around 1768 (above), are listed as estate sale buyers in Guilford County, North Carolina in 1774. Guilford County had been created just about 3 years earlier from Rowan and Orange Counties.
  • 1774, Surry Co., VA | John Phipps, the Revolutionary War soldier, was living in Surry County, Virginia. In that year, he assisted in guarding Williamsburg, then he served 12 months in 1774 and 1775 in guarding the James River area.
  • 1776, Amelia Co., VA | John Phipps, the Revolutionary War soldier, had moved to Amelia County, west of Charles City County.
  • 1779-1783, Orange Co., NC | Sometime between 1779 and 1783, John Phipps, the Revolutionary War veteran, moved to Orange County, North Carolina.
  • 1781-1783, Warren Co., NC | John Phips or Phipps is listed in Warren County, North Carolina tax lists. Note that in 1785, below, a John Phips of Warren County, North Carolina was buying land in Amelia County, Virginia. Note also that Warren County was created from Bute County (see above).
  • 25 Jan 1785, Amelia Co., VA | Solomon Coleman of Amelia County entered into a deed to John Phips, also spelled Phipps, described as being of Warren County, North Carolina. This was for land in Amelia County. Note that this record has Phips described as being of Warren County, North Carolina while purchasing land in Amelia County, Virginia. This would appear to likely be the same John who appears in Warren County, North Caroliina tax lists in 1781-1783 (above). Warren County was created in 1779 from the now-extinct Bute County. Bute County is where, in 1770 and 1772, a Joseph Fips or Fipps and wife Sarah appear in deed records as being of Brunswick County, Virginia. Today, Warren County, North Carolina is adjacent to Brunswick County, Virginia and to Halifax County, Virginia, where Ambrose Gresham (see the Gresham mentions above) and George Reaves of Wilkes County, North Carolina were Eppes heirs in 1793.
  • 17 Feb 1785, Amelia Co., VA | A deed from David Adams to James Southall was adjacent to land belonging to John Phipps. Note that a Southall is also involved in the deed of 26 July 1787, below.
  • 23 June 1785, Amelia Co., VA | A deed from Solomon Coleman to John Phipps was acknowledged in court.
  • 10 June 1786, Amelia Co., VA | The will of Frederick Ford was written in Amelia County and mentions his land in both Amelia and Prince Edward Counties. The will was witnessed by John Phipps and Tabitha Phipps. Although there appear to have been two Frederick Fords, perhaps this is the one who was appointed surveyor in 1742, above. Why a surveyor would sign with an X, however, (as did Tabitha Phipps) is unclear. At least he must have been a close relative of the surveyor. Note that the John Fips who was married to a Tabitha in Charlotte County, Virginia would have died by this time.
  • 26 July 1787, Amelia Co., VA | A deed from John Phipps to Herrod Crowder was acknowledged in court by the oaths of the witnesses. They were Daniel Southall, Samuel Pitchford, and Jeremiah Perkinson. Note that a Southall is also involved in the deed of 17 February 1785.
  • 25 Sep 1788, Amelia Co., VA | A deed acknowledgement included the mention that Frederick Ford, perhaps the same one as in the 1786 will, above, was deceased.

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