| ||Notes for CAPTAIN JOHN STEWART:|
--These are my notes (or I credit others)which I have seen copied without reference to me. Please use them but cite me; thanks!--
John Stewart is my 4th great-grandfather.
I have found no comfort in John Stewart's (born 1734 as shown here) Stewart antecedents. Indeed, we are not certain that our John is the one born in October 1734 in Bristol Parish, Prince George's County. There were many Stewarts in early Virginia. The discussion below, and that located with the "created" John (shown born 1734 nearby in these notes) explores several opportunities for his background. If John, who died in 1784, the father of our General John Stewart in Georgia, ever told his family of his lineage, they apparently went to their graves without sharing it. We do know he owned land and lived in Amherst, and prior to that was "of Cumberland..."
While I show him as born in Prince George's County, I wonder if he could be the John Stewart born about 1730 in Goochland County. Georgia Slade, <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes that her Stewarts descend from that John, and notes that Danny Stewart, the St. Clair Co.,Ala. Librarian, shows:
"William Stewart (Dumphries Scotland..early 1700's to Charleston South Carolina) married 1725a girl from Penn.
Children.....Thomas, David, John, James and William.
John Stewart Sr born 1730 Goochland Co Va...was a General in the Rev. War died 1784 in Amherst Co Va. married Ann Haw.
Children.....Charles, John Jr. , James, William, Robert, Gaines, Mary, Thomas, Anne, Elizabeth, Samuel, Richard, David and Sarah
John Stewart Jr born 1758 Va died 23 April 1829, a General in Rev War and War of 1812 married Mourning Floyd.
Children..... Matilda, Sarah, Emaline, Parmelia, Lorenzo Dow, Floyd and John Richard Ingram P.
Married second Mary West:Children...William, Thomas, David, Joseph, and James"and then traces Stewarts into Stewarts' Corner, Ala."
But alas, Danny says he has no source for this information, per Georgia.
N.J. Floyd, op. cit., adds this historical twist to the Stewart legends (See the reproduced text on the FTM CD, Southern Biographies and Genealogies, 1500s-1940s):"Tradition, preserved by the Virginia and Georgia Stewarts, states that the grandfather of Mary (Stewart m. Charles Floyd) --Colonel John Stewart-- who came to Virginia from Berwickshire, Scotland- was a younger son of the Duke of Berwick, born in Berwick Castle about 1660.On account of political troubles he fled from the coast of England in the night and landed in the New World with only his sword and a stout heart."I leave this to others to interpret. As is later related, some believe this sword lies at Oak Hill beside Permelia Stewart under the spreading magnolias.
Many believe that our General John Stewart's father is the John born Oct. 16, 1734, in Bristol Parish, Va., and entered in the Register.The Stewart Clan Magazine (hereafter SCM)cites John's birth from church records; see Tome B, vol. VIII, No. 12, Jun., 1930.However,there is at least reasonable doubt that John Stewart, known to be the father of General John Stewart and 12 other children, is this John. The Bristol Parish record says: "John S(on) of John and Mary Stuart, Born 16 octob' 1734Bapt 19 Ap' 1735."(p. 367)But in 1783, there is a record noting:"March 5, 1783, Amherst county: deposition of Martha Cole West that she was 21 years old, or 22 years old, last June, from a register kept by her father.John Stewart, aged 53 years, deposed that to his certain knowledge Miss West, daughter of John West, was over 21 years old."About this record, the SCM (G, p. 239) notes that this bond was signed Mar. 7, 1783, by George Gilbert, with Daniel Gaines as his fellow bondsman, for Gilbert's marriage to Martha Cole West. The marriage took place on the same day....If our John Stewart (Stuart) was born in 1734, then he was not 53 in 1783. He was 50 and stated his age incorrectly. Or it was recorded incorrectly, or he simply did not know his age.
John was married in about 1755 to Anne Haw (or Howe or Hawes or perhaps even House or....) in Hanover Co., Va., and was perhaps in Amherst Co. by 1762 when William was born.
The Stewarts beforeJohn, christened 19 Apr 1735, are uncertain, although some believe to have sorted them out. This uncertainty tends to abet long-standing family stories relating thedescent from a "natural" son of King James II of England. (Others have tied the descent to Charles II.) The Georgia Stewarts have an old tradition that their ancestor, the first Duke of Berwick was a royal Stewart, a younger son of the Scottish James II. That may be, but until, and if,we ever know the true descent of John Stewart born 1760, the notion of royal linkage will persist, and not without some whimsical charm. Elsewhere in these notes I have shown a notional link to the Stewarts through James FitzJames, a son of the English James II (see John Stewart b 1734).
William Richard Stewart, who has extensive information on numerous Stewarts, says:"On Sep. 20 1683, Mr.Thomas Anderson is granted 400 acres in Charles City County, Westover Parish, south side of the James River for transporting 8 persons. The list is as follows: John Stewart, Elizabeth Kish, Valen Taylor, Thomas Barrow, William Sheffield, Thomas Barret,William Stock, and Joseph Fells. It should be pointed out that Charles City, Bristol Parish, is on the south side of the Appomattox River, now Chesterfield County. However, Bristol Parish, became part of Hanover County, on May 12,1755, Saint Paul and St. Martin were divided in Hanover County. On November 20, 1683, Ann Hall, is transported by Lt. Abraham Jones, into the Bristol Parish.A tradition preserved by Virginia and Georgia Stewarts of this particular line is that.... this John Stewart of the headrightis Colonel John Stewart, of Berwickshire, Scotland, the son of the Duke of Berwick. (See N.J. Floyd, page 19.) Henrico County reflects John Stewart buying 670 acres, in 1683, page 126."
Others have asserted that there is no Duke of Berwick in Berwickshire and the whole story is preposterous. They would assert that our John Stewart is from one of 12 or more John Stewarts shipped to the new world variously after 1650 at the beginning of the Cromwell cleansing of Royalist supporters and continuing through the Monmouth Rebellion collapse in 1685 and into the 1700s.Among these is Capt. John Stewart, one of the "List of Ninety Rebells by the 'Happy Return' of Pool, Capt. Roger Wadham, Commander, with the names of the Masters to whom they were disposed of, by the Honble Col. John Hallett & Company, for account of Sir William Booth and Captain James Kendall, December 1685. (See the excellent unpublished work by Jim Mordy, sent to me by Lawrence Reno, May, 2001, which cites John C. Hotten's "Original Lists of Persons of Quality....Who went from Great Britain to the American Plantations, 1600- 1700,"Baltimore, 1962, reprint of the 2nd ed., 1880,p. 329) This John, or any of the several others arriving on these passages, could be our forebear.In 2002, there is an effort to compare DNA samples from various male Stewarts to check patterns of descent.
John Stewart's will (from photocopy from Terry Honan, adescendant of John):
Will of John Stewart
Will Book 2 pages 190-191
Amherst Co., Virginia
April 14, 1784
In the nameof God Amen, IJohn Stewart of theparish & County of Amherst Co. make and ordain this my last will and testament.In manner and formasfollowith, Viz.: I lendunto my wellbeloved wife Ann Stewart as long as she liveth three Negro women, Sharlotte, Molley and Esther and it is my desire that my youngestchildren may be educated from the labourof the above mentioned slaves, Sharlotte, Molley and Esther my son Samuel Stewart is have three years schooling also my son David Stewart to have three years schooling Richard Stewart to have three years schooling mydaughter Salley Stewart to have two years also it is my desire that my wife Ann Stewart should have peaceable possession of all my stock of horses,goats, hogs & sheep as long as she lives and also of my household and kitchen furniture as long as she lives and it is my desire at her death that all the estate both real & personal should be equally divided among my children, Charles Stewart, John Stewart, James Stewart, Robert Stewart, Mary Stewart, Thomas Stewart, Elizabeth Stewart, Ann Stewart, Samuel Stewart, David Stewart, Salley Stewart, Richard Stewart &William Stewart to them & their heirs to share & share alike after I give to my son John Stewart Three thousand seven hundred & fifty acres of land lying & being in Kentucky to him & his heirs forever to have immediate possession. I constitute, nominate and appoint my two sons Charles Stewart & John Stewart executors of this my last will and testament hereby revoking all former wills. In witness here of I have set my hand and seal this fourteenth day of April 1784.
Wiatt PowellJohn Stewart
Probated August 2, 1784
p. 190-191. Exors. bond rec. 2 Aug. 1784,p. 192. Will pro. 7 Aug. 1784,Will Book No. 2, 1780-1786
The order given in these notes for his 13 childrenis based on his will order, interspersed with those birth dates we know with certainty.
Doreen Pool, 22 Dec., 1998 says "I found Capt. John Stewart and Mourning Floyd's marriage record in Amherst Countyrecords along with Charles Stewart m. Sally Furbush, 15 Dec 1785; James Stewart m. Clary Pollard, 21 Oct 1782;Robert Stewart m. Sally Miles, 5 Dec 1792"
From William Richard Stewart, Jan 1999:"Our cousin Thomas William Stewart said that John Stewart (editorial note: 1734-1784) died before his father...... I still think John Stewart can be traced back through Cumberland County, to Louisa, and on to Chesterfield,Bristol Parish, and Hanover County Virginia. "
Ernie Stewart, noted below, sent me this reference to the provision law in April, 2003 in the Amherst County records, relating to a Public Claim by John Stewart Sr., Court Order Book pg 484, Apr Court 1782
Among the claims is one by John Stewart dated from 10 Oct. 1781 in the amount of 1 pound 18 shillings and 4 pence for 230 lbs. of beef. The reason for the claim is unclear to me. Among the many claims some reasons are clear i.e., for use of self and wagon for 8 days, militia or continental army. In some cases the exact unit is given. But in John's claim and many others the reason is recorded as "provision law or prov. law" so I am not clear if this claim had anything to do with the military. If so it would be acceptable by the SAR as proof of service or support and John could be included among the patriots of the Revolution (according to their web site as I understand it). However it might mean that John and many others were being reimbursed according to the provisions of law for something that had nothing to do with the military. Any thoughts as to provision law?"(Editor: The provision law was enacted in Virginia in about 1780 for the specific purpose of settling claims by those who had given support to the revolutionary armies, and this makes John Sr. an eligible ancestor to those entering the SAR rolls.)
Our cousin Ernie Stewart, <email@example.com>, has drawn the information belowtogether in a coherent package, which might help us understand at least what some of the Stewarts were doing!He kindly sent this June 1, 2002:
"Hello Pat, .... I recently received a file containing the letter below, dated 1896. Of course it got me to thinking again of the Stewart line prior to John m. Ann Hawe. I put my notes together along with the info in the letter and found there might be a family pattern within it all. I thought you might like to have the letter, if you don’t already.... Warmest Regards, Ernie
"Goochland VirginiaOctober 17,1896
Seymour Stewart, Esq.
Dear Sir:I am in receipt of your letter of the 14th inst., in which you make inquiries concerning transfers of land to John Stewart, etc. Our recordshere commence in 1728 and upon investigation I find the following facts relating to John Stewart, Viz:-
(1)Deed from John Stewart to John Povall(editor: probably Powell), datedFeb.14th 1729-30 conveying 400 acres of land. (2) Deed from John Stewart to John Povoll, dated Feb. 16th conveying 400 acres of land. (3) Deed dated July 15th, 1734, John Stewart to John Povall conveying 420 acres of land. (4) Deed dated July 16th, 1734 John Stewart to John Povall conveying 420 acres of land. (5) Deed dated March 15th, 1779 from Anthony Martin to John Stewart conveying 227 acres of land. (6) Deed dated 18th October, 1779 from John Stewart to John Ellis conveying 227 acres of land. John Stewart mentioned in the deeds 5 and 6 above indicated he was, at the time of making them, a resident of Cumberland County Virginia, and the same mentioned in deeds 1,2,3,4 is situated I think Powhatan County Virginia, which was formed from Cumberland in 1777, and Cumberland from Goochland in 1748, Goochland from Henrico in 1727. If John Stewart of 1729 was the same John who died in 1784 in Amherst County Virginia, then the records of Cumberland and Henrico would probably afford information. Copies of the deeds will cost you 75 cts....Very truly yours, P.G. Miller, Clerk of County & Circuit Court. [Dep.Clerk]
"Grants in Henrico County Virginia for John Stewart are as follows.  John Stewart 600 acres Henrico County Virginia, North side of Appomattox River adjoining Ashen Swamp, March 15th,1672/3.Book 6,page 446.  John Stewart Senior 670 acres in Bristol Parish,Henrico County Virginia North side of Appomattox Riverat a place called Ashen Swamp, including former grant600 acres April 20th, 1685.Both of the grants were within what is now Chesterfield County Virginia, formed from Henrico in 1748. John Stewarts 1600 acres on the North side of the Appomattox River, beginning at the upper side of Fighting Creek November 24th, 1725. [Fighting Creek flows into the Appomattox River and is in present Powhatan County Virginia. I think it is probably part of the 1600 acres of land sold by John Stewart of Cumberland County Virginia on Fighting Creek]
1] March 15th,1672/3John Stewart 600 acres Henrico County Virginia, North side of Appomattox River
adjoining Ashen Swamp, Book 6, page 446.
2] Sep. 20,1683 a John Stewart transported into the area: Charles City Co, Westopher Parish
3] April 20th,1685 John Stewart Senior 670 acres in Bristol Parish, Henrico County Virginia North side of
Appomattox River at a place called Ashen Swamp, including former grant 600 acres.
4] April of 1705 John Steward Jr. listed on the Henrico Co. Rent Rolls.
5] Nov 24th, 1725 John Stewart 1600 acres on the North side of the Appomattox River, beginning at the upper side of Fighting Creek
6] Goochland County Feb.14th 1729-30Deed (1) from John Stewart to John Povall, 400 acres of land.
Feb.16th 1729-30Deed (2) from John Stewart to John Povoll,400 acres of land. July 15th,1734Deed (3)from John Stewart to John Povall420 acres of land. July 16th,1734 Deed (4)from John Stewart to John Povall 420 acres of land.
7] Cumberland County Mar 15th,1779 Deed (5)from Anthony Martin to John Stewart 227 acres of land.
18th Oct,1779 Deed (6) from John Stewart to John Ellis 227 acres of land.
8] 1727 Goochland from Henrico,1748 Cumberland from Goochland,1777 Powhatanfrom Cumberland
"Thoughts: I think there may be the possibility of a family relationship here. The dates and place supporting that possibility. It appears that John per #1 and 3 are the same individual. Entry 3 indicates a son, also named John. John per #4 may be that son. John per #5 may be either John Sr. or Jr.The Goochland Co. deeds may also relate to the same family as Henrico has in 1727 become Goochland Co. It would seem almost certain that these deeds pertain to thesame two individuals. In which case we have a John in possession of considerable land holdings. If these are 4 individual deeds, and not double entries for the same two deeds, 1640 acres has been sold.If all 3 grants pertain to the same John (#1), as it would appear, he has 2870 acres in possession.It seems possible also that John per #7 might be a continuation of the same family. In 1748 Cumberland Co. has been taken from part of Goochland, so it may still be part of the same land being sold by the aged John Jr. or more likely a third generation John. I am wondering if the name Anthony Martin (deed #5) is significant to the Stewart/Stevens line, knowing the Stevens early use of the name Martin. Could there be a connection to Jane Martin, mother of John Martin Stevens?(Editor-- I do not have a record of Anthony, and suspect there is no close relation....)Also I note from the Will of John m. Anne Hawe that he had considerable land holdings in Kentucky. It appears that this family, if indeed it is one family, had the talent or good fortune to obtain considerable land grants.
"John per #2 seems to be irrelevant if the other Johns are part of the same family. Also, I believe it a condition of a land grant that the land was to be settled. In the case of this John it appears he is with a number of persons meant to settle the land of Mr. Thomas Anderson who was granted 400 acres in Charles City County, Westopher Parish, south side of the James River for transporting 8 persons. All of the land granted to John Stewart was on the North side of the Appomattox River. I’ve not looked at any maps as yet but think this might place John per #2 in a different area and from the dates arriving approx. 10 years after John Stewart of Bristol Parish, Henrico Co. has received his first land grant."
And in late June, 2002, Ernie added this careful review of the SCM notes. His references to Edson refer to its editor for many years.He writes:
" Hi Pat, The Edson entries are somewhat disjointed, and over nearly fifty years of research, he ofcourse discovered things that had an impact on earlier entries. For example,he often publishes material sent to him by his subscribers and friends.He may then, years later, correct an earlier publication with results from his own research. So it is time consuming to follow the trail of entries concerning a particular line, individual, or place. I think, however, I finally have at least one thing of which we can be sure.
"E-19 (1943)(ed: this refers to the 'tome' E, and page and year) John3, (Daniel2, John1) b.1700 Bristol (later Dale) Parish , m. Mary Bowman 1722. Moved c. 1750 to Amelia Co. children mentioned in Will (1777 inventory of estate 1779): John, Charles, Gilbert(died unmarried in 1758 so not mentioned), Obedience, Daniel(also removed to Henry county with brother John), Littlebury, Sarah, Jane
"E-22 John4, (John3, Daniel2, John1) born about 1724* in old Henrico county, went to Henry county (set off from Pittsylvania in 1777), where he obtained a grant Feb. 1, 1781, of 225 acres (by survey dated Jan, 11, 1779) on south side of Blackwater river, adjoining lands of Jesse Clay and Daniel Ward (land grants D:372). When Franklin county was erected from territory of Henry and Bedford counties John Stewart’s farm was in Franklin county, =D:117. He sold this 225 acre tract onApr. 4, 1791, to William Aron, the witnesses to the deed being Zachariah Jones, John Hall and John Smith.
"*He could have been the John, son of John and Mary Stuart, who was born Oct. 16, 1734, and baptized Apr. 19, 1735,in Bristol Parish, =D:99.
"I assume the editor of the Stewart Clan Magazine had ample documentation to satisfy himself as to the identity of the above John. It would then seem that we can positively put aside the notion that our John was a son of John Stuart and Mary Bowman. With the documentation Edson offers with the above entry I would think it well researched and proven that their son, John, was alive in 1791. Whereas it appears equally certain from other documentation that our John died in 1784.
"As to the birth record, ten years is a pretty good leap so I’m not willing to accept wholly that it is the child of John and Mary Bowman Stuart being recorded. The parents could well be another John and Mary Stuart."
(Ed.: Through Ernie Stewart's continued work, we know from recent DNA tests in late 2002 that the Bowmans are not a part of our line, or cannot be proved to be. He says in Jan., 2003 that"... the test DNA results came back just a little while ago. There was not a match to any of the other Stewart lines participating in the project. I had been hopeful but this is only the beginning of the part DNA testing will play in the future. There are other lines that have joined the project and we await their results. Others will be joining in the future. To date there are only 25 participants whose results have been returned. 5 more are in the works.Even with that there have been some exciting discoveries. A Stewart that died in SC in 1875 turned out to be a perfect match with the John (b. 1632 England) & Dorothy Stewart line of Henrico Co., Va. This by the way is the John Stewart & Mary Bowman line and we can say that in addition to the paper evidence that disproves our John as their son so does the DNA testing. Although convinced that John was not 'their' son I did suspect that he might belong to that line. At any rate I'll consider it a negative gain.... Ernie")
He continues: "I have found an entry where he lists our John in this manner:John4(John3)He often does not note the line back to whoever 2 and 1 would have been. And the majority of the entries concerning an individual do not include enough info to establish the persons line from what is in that particular entry. But just from the notation above it appears that he has a father named John in mind for our John rather than a designation owing to the time of his birth as I feared. (This refers to a discussion we had of citing different people with the same name as Jane 1 and Jane 2 and so forth...)Now to try and find more on that.
"Also will need to verify that he (Edson) did not change any of this at some later time. Warmest Regards,Ernie"
We have also speculated that this John is an orphan. If that be so, he perhaps did not know or recall his folks and never spoke of them.... Ernie notes:"It seems children were boundout by the court until they reached their early teens at which time they could choose their guardian. I need to check into this further but at any rate the thought was that John's father may have died while he was quite young, if he then spent part of his childhood in another home and his youth under the watchcare of a guardian it would not seem illogical that he might have lost touch with his past. From D-110:Susanna Stewart (editor: of no known connection) was apparenty a widow by 1746. The Amelia county court for Jan., 1746, entered the following order in its order book for 1746-1761, page 29: "On motion of John Hall, gent., it is ordered thatAnn, Mary, John, and Joseph Stewart, children of Susanna Stewart, be bound out by the church wardens of Rawleigh parish according to law."If John were ten at that point, he was born in 1736, a good fit. There are also numerous later Anns and Marys in the line, but there are no Susannas or Josephs.... Needs further checking.
And Ernie <firstname.lastname@example.org> after a winter 2002 trip to Amherst: "Hi all.... I have finished the examination of the (the Stewart Clan Magazine) SCM entries that pertain to our line. There is nothing that offers any obvious help. It became apparent early on that Edson (the editor of the SCM) had no clue as to the line past our most senior John (ed. born 1734). I have found nothing in the entries that offer any obvious clues past him. I had hoped for something in the way of name associations or deeds, etc....
The Amherst records are still intact going back to the formation of the county in 1762. There is a deed to Stewart 'of the county of Cumberland' from Carter Braxton. Ernie Stewart notes that Cumberland is a burned county and there are no records for the period prior to 1775. Sadly, what we may have found there pertaining to John is lost to us. The documents, copied by Ernie, follow:"...the first instance of John in Amherst County that I have found or am aware of is a deed dated 1775 indicating the purchase of a parcel of land from Carter Braxton. Amherst County Deed Book D, page 294 records:'June 17, 1775 John Stewart bought land from Carter Braxton and his wife Elizabeth, of King William Co., to John Stewart, of Cumberland County for £346, 520 acres North side Rutledge and Crooked Run.'Part of tract. Lines: Lynch Road, Henry Gilbert, James Menees, Daniel Gaines, Higginbotham, Capt. Henry Gilbert at Crooked Run. Witnesses: John West, Thomas Lumpkin, Joseph Cabell, James Callaway, Robert Burton, W. Cabell, Samuel Cabell."
He continues, "I arrived at Amherst Courthouse later in the day than I had hoped, having made a stop in Roanoke to copy more entries from the SCM. Therefore was not able to spend as much time as I would have liked. I only had time to locate the 3 deeds pertaining to John and a quick look through the marriage records index. I saw several Stewarts listed including the record of Gen. John and Mourning...."
Amongst the items Ernie later transcribed is this document:
"13 May 1783
Came the parties by their attornies aforesaid and came also a jury to witt, James Matthews, William Bibb, Charles Ashley, George Galaspie, John Bibb, Robert Wright, John Henry? Giffen, William Walton, John Campbell, Young? Sandrum, John Ball and John Hunell?
who being sworn to try the issue joined Between the parties upon their oath do say that the Defendant hath not paid the Debt in Declarations mentioned, therefore it is considered by the court that the Plantiff recover against the said defendant the sum of three
hundred and sixty one pounds Twelve shillings the debt in the declaration mentioned and also his costs by him in this behalf expended.
But this Judgment the costs excepted is to be Discharged by the payment of One Hundred and Eighty pounds & Twelve shillings with five percent per annum interest thereon from the fifteenth Day of May One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy Seven till paid."
Carter Braxton is most certainly the Carter Braxton (1736-1797) who signed the Declaration of Independence, and who by 1783 was in terrible debt. The jury settlement above struck to less than half the claim on Stewart, for whatever reason. It seems certain at least that Braxton and our ancestor John Stewart were acquainted, though perhaps not amicably.
The Web Site "The Signers of the Declaration of Independence" notes that
...he was born of a wealthy family in Newington Plantation, Virginia, but lost nearly all of his wealth in the course of the revolution, partly through his support of the Union, and partly through attack by the British forces. He was educated at William and Mary College. He married at age 19, but his wife died about two years after. He then went to England for a little more than two years. In 1760 he returned, married again, and was appointed to represent King William county in the Virginia House of Burgesses. He was in attendance 1765, when Patrick Henry's Stamp Act resolutions agitated the Assembly, and in 1769 Braxton joined the "radical" faction of the Burgesses in support of Virginia's sole right to tax inhabitants. When the house was dissolved in 1774 he joined the patriot's Committee of Safety in Virginia, and represented his county in the Virginia Convention. In 1775, upon the sudden death of Peyton Randolph, Braxton was selected to assume his place in the Continental Congress. He attended two years, after which he returned to Virginia to continue service to the House of Burgesses. During the War, he had loaned £10,000 sterling to support the revolutionary cause. He had also used his wealth to sponsor shipping and privateering during the conflict, the losses from which eventually resulted in debt. He never recovered, and, in 1786, was forced to leave his inherited country estate for simple quarters in Richmond. He died at age 61.
His judgment against Stewart was during this period of his penury. The Colonial Hall Web site paints a slightly less heroic manner of his debt: "The latter days of Mr. Braxton were embittered by several unfortunate commercial speculations, which involved him in pecuniary embarrassments, from which he found it impossible to extricate himself. Several vexatious law-suits, in which he became engaged, contributed still farther to diminish his property, and unfortunately led him unintentionally to injure several of his friends, who were his sureties. The morning of his days was indeed bright; but, like many a morning which appears in the natural world without clouds, his was followed, towards the close of the day, by clouds and darkness, under which he sunk, imparting an impressive lesson of the passing nature of the form and fashion of the present world."
The Amherst County Historical Society notes that "On 15 May 1738, George Braxton, Sr., George Braxton, Jr., Humphrey Brooke, Robert Brooke, Robert Rose and Thomas Chew obtained patents for 40,000 acres on both sides of the Fluvanna (now James River), and both sides of the Pedlar River in Goochland (now Amherst County) below the Great Mountains. The two Braxtons were large plantation owners in King and Queen County and active in local government. Upon their deaths, Carter Braxton inherited their westward land patents. His lands extended southwest from the Buffalo River along Tribulation Creek, Higginbotham Creek and Rutledge Creek and included the present Town of Amherst."