Nathaniel Cunningham was my 5th great-grandfather. I have actually posted his will before, however, that was transcribed from a barely legible copy in a court record. Recently, I found the original will, which is not only easier to read, but differs slightly from the copy. This version makes clear that Nathaniel effectively put his property … Continue reading Will of Nathaniel Cunningham of Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, 26 Oct 1830
Slaveholding families held much of their wealth in human capital. And so, they often argued about slaves. When they did, they left court records which provide a lot of information about both themselves and the enslaved people that they were arguing about. David Neal's family is a case in point. In his will, dated 4 … Continue reading Reconstructing an Enslaved Family from Court and Probate Records
I am still unearthing more Virginia ancestors, and finally got "back to the boat" on this one. My 7th great-grandfather, David Neal, was an Irish immigrant. His daughter, Eleanor, married William McGuffey Rives. The grandchildren listed in the will are her children, William Rives, my 5g grandfather, and his sister Joanna Rives Turner. David Neal … Continue reading Will of David Neal, Amelia County, Virginia, 4 June 1775
On the one hand, I hit the mother lode when I started researching my paternal Rives line. These folks, unlike most others in my tree, had money and left a substantial paper trail. They were also from Virginia, which has better-preserved records than some other states. I can see I'm going to be working on … Continue reading Will of William Hamner, Albemarle County, Virginia, 25 December 1787
William McGuffey Rives was my 5th great-grandfather. Born in Dinwiddie County, Virginia, he was raised on his grandfather's plantation near Petersburg, according to an 1839 letter written by his widow, Mary Catherine Turner Rives. William inherited his first slaves on 19 Dec 1786, at about age 19, from the estate of his grandfather, David Neal. … Continue reading Slaves Held by William McGuffey Rives of Warren County, North Carolina
I am still digging around in Rives records. Unlike most other lines in my family, the Rives (sometimes spelled Reeves) had a fair amount of property. They could be called minor Virginia gentry. As such, a good bit of research has also been done on them already, including a 1929 book, "Reliques of the Ryves." … Continue reading Will of Thomas Rives of Chatham County, North Carolina, 10 June 1807
I am currently researching my 5th great-grandfather, William McGuffey Rives, father of "Captain" William Rives. I have quite a bit of information on him, and so am posting this lengthy will separately. It is somewhat interesting in that it reveals that he produced cloth on his plantation. I also wonder if the 1200 hundred pounds … Continue reading Will of William McGuffey Rives of Warren County, North Carolina, 24 Nov 1836
Slave records of "Captain" William Rives of Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.