Isabella the wife of Nathaniel Abney was the daughter of Henry Madison a brother of Ambrose Madison, the grandfather of President James Madison. The early literature links Isabella to a John Madison who is said to be the brother of Ambrose also. [Their mother was Isabella Minor Todd Madison]I have done a great deal of work on the Madison family and the following is an excerpt from a client report.
The first record in order of importance to this study is a Court order recorded in Lunenburg County, Virginia in August 1757 Order Book 4 p. 335. Which states Madison choose her guardian:Isbell Madison Orphan of Henry Madison decd came into court and (being of lawful age for that purpose) made choice of Tschner Degraffenreid to be her Guardian who is accordingly appointed on his giving Security whereupon he together with George Waller his Security Entered into and acknowledged their bond for that Purpose. Madison Chose his Guardian} Henry Madison Orphan of Henry Madison decd came into court and (being of lawful age for that purpose) mad Choce of Roger Madison to be his Guarding who in accordingly approved on his giving Security whereupon he together with George [? faint] and Daniel Claborne his Security Entered and acknowledged their Bond for that purpose.
This record states Isabell daughter of Henry Madison chooses Tschner Degraffenreid as her guardianIt further states she was old enough to choose her own guardian. The custom of the time was she was at least 12 years of age. [14 more lake as it was so for males]. It also states Henry had a daughter Isabell.
The absence of Nathaniel Abney in the area where John Madison her alledged father lived and his presence in the same area where this Court Order is recorded, plus the fact this record meshes with the birthdate assigned Isabella Madison by descendants. Isabella would have been 17 when she choose her guarding. Her brother Henry was younger and he choose his Uncle Roger Madison.