Reconstructing an Enslaved Family from Court and Probate Records

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

List of Slave Births, Stephen Turner Bible, Warren County, North Carolina, 1835-1864

I was recently delighted to find the Bible of my 6th great-grandmother, Susanna Hamner Turner, wife of Stephen Reuben Turner, at the North Carolina Digital Archives. In it, she had recorded the births of all her 12 children, along with marriages and deaths. After Susanna's death, her Bible was inherited by her son, Henley Turner, … Continue reading List of Slave Births, Stephen Turner Bible, Warren County, North Carolina, 1835-1864

Will of William Hamner, Albemarle County, Virginia, 25 December 1787

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

Will of Stephen Reuben Turner, Warren County, North Carolina, 14 October 1799

Stephen Reuben Turner was my 6th great-grandfather, son of Terisha Turner and father of Mary Catherine Turner Rives. There are two copies of his will out there: this¬† transcription is from a copy found in North Carolina, Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 at Ancestry.com. I believe this version to be the more accurate because it … Continue reading Will of Stephen Reuben Turner, Warren County, North Carolina, 14 October 1799

Will of “Ancient” Terisha Turner, Amherst County, Virginia, 7 May 1793

Terisha Turner was my 7th great-grandfather. His granddaughter, Mary Catherine Turner, my 5th great-grandmother, was the wife of William McGuffey Rives. Amherst County, Virginia records are unfortunately not available online, for the most part, so I have not been able to view the original will. However, there are several transcriptions floating around on the internet. … Continue reading Will of “Ancient” Terisha Turner, Amherst County, Virginia, 7 May 1793

Slaves Held by William McGuffey Rives of Warren County, North Carolina

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

Will of William McGuffey Rives of Warren County, North Carolina, 24 Nov 1836

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