I believe you have excellent evidence supporting your claim to descend from Richard Timberlake and Frances (Harfield) Timberlake, but there a few problems to be ironed out.
First, there are some questions about Richard Timberlake:Who were his parents?When was he born?When did he come to America?Let?fs begin by noting a seemingly reliable Bible record that at one time was in the hands of Miss Annie Timberlake at Enfield, Virginia.The record has been reproduced by Mary Adeline (Timberlake) McCall (born April 14, 1864) in her famous work, Timberlake Genealogy (first published in 1936), which appears on pp. 16-23 of the beautifully done book by Clarice (Jones) Foster, Look Where the Sun is ?? Timberlake Reflections (Columbia, South Carolina: The R.L. Bryant Company, 1985).To Annie Timberlake is attributed the claim (on p. 20) that Henry Timberlake?fs parents ?gcame from New Kent, or rather near Williamsburg, after the Revolution and settled in King William.?hFurthermore, according to Annie, Richard Timberlake died on October 2, 1794, age 65 years.This seems to me to be the same Richard Timberlake who married Frances Harfield.In two other places in Addie McCall?fs Timberlake Genealogy (on p. 17 in Foster), she writes that the Richard Timberlake who married Frances Harfield died in October, 1794.In other works, we find the claim that Richard Timberlake married Frances Harfield.For example, there is J.E. Norris, History of the Lower Shenandoah Valley: Counties of Frederick, Berkeley, Jefferson, and Clarke (Chicago: A. Warner & Co., 1890), p. 635.
Of course, there are discrepancies.In a couple of places in Addie McCall?fs work (on p. 17 in Foster), she writes that this Richard Timberlake was born in 1710.But the above-mentioned Bible record states that Richard Timberlake was age 65 when he died in 1794, which would mean that he was born ca. 1729.This latter date seems much more probable to me, especially given the dates of birth of Richard?fs children.One of Richard?fs children, David Timberlake, was born in 1759, according to Addie McCall?fs genealogy, p. 17 in Foster?fs book.Moreover, Harfield Timberlake was born in 1770, according to the article in the 1890 newspaper that you yourself discovered.It?fs more likely that Harfield?fs father was born in 1729, not 1710.Furthermore, there is evidence that his wife, Frances Harfield, was born in 1729 too.In Addie McCall?fs Timberlake Genealogy we find the claim that Frances died on November 2, 1804; see p. 17 of Foster?fs book.According to Annie Timberlake?fs Bible record, Richard?fs wife, ?gSarah?h Timberlake, died on November 2, 1804.The name ?gSarah?h presents a problem, but it seems likely to me that this was another name (maybe a nickname) for ?gFrances.?hIn any event, the death dates are the same.And if this woman was age 75 when she died in 1804, she must have been born about in 1729.I think it is probable that the progenitors, Richard and Frances (Harfield) Timberlake, were both born ca. 1729.
Another problem has to do with Richard?fs parents.I see no reason to believe that Richard?fs father was the Richard Timberlake who was born in 1726 in Middlesex County, Virginia.According to the early Middlesex County records, a Richard Timberlake was born on August 19, 1726; he was the son of the ?goriginal?h Francis Timberlake of Middlesex.But, in the first place, it would be very unusual for a three-year old boy to be a father.Secondly, as far as I know, there is no evidence anywhere that this Richard Timberlake, son of the ?goriginal?h Francis Timberlake, was the same as the Richard who married Frances Harfield.For quite some time, people have been trying to claim Richard, the son of the ?goriginal?h Francis Timberlake, as their own.In her otherwise wonderful book, Families of Warren, Franklin, & Granville Counties, North Carolina, & Virginia Ancestry (self-published in 1989), the late Gayle (King) Blankenship suggests (on p. 141) that Richard, the son of Francis, might have married Mary Curd, but, as I think I have established in my own book of family history, Willcott, Kay, Timberlake, and Allied Families (Baltimore, Maryland: Gateway Press, Inc., 2001), p. 123, Mary Curd married Richard Timberlake, the son of Phillip Timberlake, Sr.The fact of the matter is that no-one knows what happened to Richard, son of the ?goriginal?h Francis Timberlake.This Richard seems to have vanished from the face of the earth.Similarly, no-one is able to identify the parents of the Richard Timberlake who married Frances Harfield.There seems to be a consensus that this Richard came to America from England.On p. 635 of his book, J.E. Norris states that Richard and Frances came to the Old Dominion from London, England, in 1733, and this claim is echoed by Thomas K. Cartmell on p. 456 of his book, Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and their Descendants: A History of Frederick County, Virginia, from its Formation in 1738 to 1908, two volumes (1909), reprinted edition (Bowie, Maryland: Heritage Books, 1989).So if, as I think is true, Richard was born ca. 1729, he would have come to Virginia when he was about four years old.But there is still another possibility.The late John Allen Duncan (for whom I have enormous respect) wrote that Richard and Frances (Harfield) Timberlake ?gwere wed in London and sailed to Virginia in 1760.?hThis claim appears in his unpublished manuscript, ?gTale #6, Do You Know Henry Timberlake??h p. 8.To me, this date seems even more probable than 1733.In any event, we don?ft know who Richard?fs parents were.The date when Richard married Frances, too, is unknown, but we would be in a better position to establish it if we knew the date of birth of the one who was apparently the couple?fs first child.So let?fs take a look at their children.
On p. 635 J.E. Norris supplies the names of eleven children of Richard and Frances (Harfield) Timberlake:Richard, Henry, Benjamin, John, James, William, David, Harfield, Elizabeth, Sally, and Nancy.We are told that ?gWilliam and David settled near White Post, Clarke county, and Harfield in Jefferson County, W. Va.?hThe same list of children appears in the same order in Addie McCall?fs ?gTimberlake Genealogy,?h given on p. 17 of Foster?fs book.Of course, we cannot assume that the list represents the correct birth order, especially since the first eight are male names and the last three are female, and Mother Nature doesn?ft usually work that way.However, there might be some reason to think that Richard was the first.Unfortunately, I am unaware of any source that provides us with Richard?fs date of birth.In her Bible record, Miss Annie Timberlake tells us (on p. 20 in Foster) that ?gAnn?h Timberlake (probably Nancy), sister of Henry, died on January 30, 1793, and Benjamin Timberlake, brother of Henry, died on March 4, 1815.
On the bright side, we do have dates of birth for Richard?fs children, David, Henry, and Harfield.According to Addie McCall?fs genealogy (p. 17 in Foster), one of Richard?fs sons, ?gDavid Timberlake, was born 1759, married Mary Davis, daughter of a Baptist minister.He was a farmer at Mt. Airy, White Post, Virginia, and is buried at Beelul, Virginia.?hMoreover, there is a great quantify of information about the family of David and Mary (Davis) Timberlake on pp. 635-36 in Norris. Next we have Henry Timberlake.According to Annie Timberlake?fs Bible record (reproduced on p. 20 of Foster), Henry was born in 1760.We are furthermore informed that Henry and a certain Elizabeth R. were married on April 29, 1793, by B. Winn.Moreover, on p. 8 of his article on the many persons named ?gHenry Timberlake,?h the late John Allen Duncan writes:?gHENRY TIMBERLAKE [1761-1829] was the son of Frances Harfield [1729-1804] and her husband, Richard Timberlake [1730-1794], of King William County, VA.The parents were wed in London and sailed to Virginia in 1760.Henry, as a Sergeant in the Virginia Continental Line, served as body-guard to Lafayette . . . .Henry married Elizabeth Robinson Wilson in 1793, and they had eleven children.?hOn p. 23 of another unpublished manuscript, ?gTimberlake Tales #5, Part Two,?h the late John Allen Duncan informs us that ?gthe National Archives has the military record of a Henry Timberlake [1760-1829] of King William County, Virginia.Promoted to sergeant, Henry was assigned as body-guard to Lafayette before the general?fs proposed invasion of Canada early in 1778.Duncan?fs reference is Application 044-793 of Annabel (Timberlake) Hogshead to the DAR, approved September 29, 1903.In any case, it seems that Henry was born in 1760 or 1761.Finally, according to the 1890 newspaper article that you yourself discovered, Harfield Timberlake, son of Richard and Frances, was born in April or June, 1770, in Virginia.In short, we have dates of birth for three of the children of this marriage, 1759, ca. 1761, and 1770.It would not be improbable for their first child, Richard, to have been born ca. 1750-55.
Since you have a special interest in Harfield Timberlake, you will probably appreciate learning a few more things about him.On p. 658 of his book J.E. Norris says that Harfield Timberlake married Mary Griggs, daughter of Thomas and Alcy (Carter) Griggs.He furthermore writes that, together with his two brothers, Harfield Timberlake came to the Valley from New Kent County in 1795; he died in 1828 at his residence, ?gShenstone,?h where his widow, Mary, died in September, 1845, in her sixty-seventh year.That would mean that Mary was born ca. 1778.Harfield would have been about 58 when he died.
On p. 14 of his manuscript, ?gTale #6, Do You Know Henry Timberlake??h John Allen Duncan tells us a few things about Thomas Timberlake, son of Harfield and Mary (Griggs) Timberlake.Thomas is said to have married Mildred Carver Willis [1810-1882].Mildred was the daughter of Frances (Hite) Madison and Frances?f second husband, Carver Willis.Thomas and Mildred had a son, Henry Timberlake, born ca. 1830.And we are informed a great deal more about four sons of Harfield and Mary (Griggs) Timberlake on pp. 660-61 in Norris:(i) Thomas Lee Timberlake is said to have died in October, 1840.(ii) Ambrose Cramer Timberlake is said to have died on June 23, 1874.(iii) Richard Timberlake is said to have died in April, 1888.(iv) James Harfield Timberlake is said to have died on October 2, 1878.Among other interesting things, Norris tells us that ?gthe family of Harfield and Mary (Griggs) Timberlake resided in the Lower Shenandoah Valley, and for forty-five years near the home of their ancestor, Thomas Griggs.?h
Unfortunately, Norris says nothing about any daughters of Harfield and Mary (Griggs) Timberlake, but you apparently have information concerning their daughter, Nancy Timberlake, born in Virginia (although I?fm not sure about the date).
I regret that, in all of this, I have relied exclusively on secondary sources.As I indicated in a message on David H. Timberlake, posted on July, 23, 2000, on the Timberlake GenForum (message #305), some important primary sources have apparently been lost.But I still think someone should undertake a project on the family of Richard and Frances (Harfield) Timberlake involving as many as possible of the early records of Virginia and West Virginia.As far as I know, this has not yet been done.I seldom pay much attention to claims made on web sites such as Ancestral File, etc.At best, these provide only clues for bona fide research in the original documents.Concerning Richard and Frances, the progenitors, it might prove fruitful to conduct research in early parish records in England.
To summarize what I presently believe on the basis of the secondary sources, Richard and Frances (Harfield) Timberlake were both born approximately in 1729.Their parents are unknown.They were probably married in England (maybe around 1750) and came to Virginia shortly thereafter.They had eleven children, namely, Richard, Henry, Benjamin, John, James, William, David, Harfield (a male), Elizabeth, Sally, and Nancy.I am unaware of any evidence that Richard Timberlake, husband of Frances (Harfield) Timberlake, provided any military service during the American Revolution.And I don?ft know anything about the idea that Frances was a ?gLady.?hAs John Allen Duncan used to say, she was undoubtedly a lady, but not, perhaps, a ?gLady.?h
Best wishes, Larry Lee Blackman