William Crabtree was born 22 December 1726 in Baltimore County, Maryland, the son of William Crabtree and Mary Pike. Hannah Whitaker was also a native of Baltimore county, having been born there on 26 March 1729. She was the daughter of Abraham Whitaker and Ann Poteet.
William and Hannah married on 27 May 1746 in Baltimore and lived there long enough to see the births of their first three children, sons William, Abraham and Isaac.
About 1760, the young family headed south and settled in Bedford County, Virginia. William was likely encouraged by the availability of large tracts of cheaper land in an area that was pretty much on the Virginia frontier.
The Crabtrees remained in Bedford County until 1772; the rest of their children – Jacob, James, Job, Priscilla, Hannah, Margaret and a child who died young – were probably all born in Bedford County.
By 1772, William was drawn even further out onto the frontier and the family made a final move to Fincastle County, Virginia, but which became Washington County in 1776.
The original Washington County covered a larger area than today’s Washington County, but even on a modern map, you can see how far west the area was from more heavily settled eastern Virginia counties.
As the American Revolution began, militia units in Washington County were kept busy maintaining peace on the frontier (containing Indian troubles) and fighting Tories living among them.
Although many families had divided loyalties over which side – King or Independence – to support, the Crabtrees were patriots to the core.
William Crabtree died about March 1777 in Washington County. It isn’t know whether he saw actual service, but his widow, Hannah Whitaker Crabtree, is a recognized patriot as she paid the 1783 supply tax to Washington County. Hannah’s death date is unknown, but she was still alive in 1786 so saw the birth of the new United States.
What is more amazing is that of William and Hannah’s nine children, at least six of them (William, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, James and brother-in-law Richard Price married to their sister, Priscilla) have documented service in the war.
Job, born in 1765, would have only been 11 years old at the start of the war. He might also have had militia service in the last years, but no one has applied for membership in DAR under Job. Sisters Hannah, born 1768, and Margaret, born c1770, likely had husbands too young to serve.
Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and James were also pensioned for their Revolutionary War service.
1. William, born c1748, Baltimore County, Maryland; died c1818, possibly in Washington County, Virginia; married Catherine (MNU), c1773.
2. Abraham, born c1750, Baltimore County, Maryland; died 2 May 1838, Russell County, Virginia; married Mary (MNU), c1776. Pension: R2418V
3. Isaac, born c1757, Baltimore County, Maryland; died 7 September 1849, Clinton County, Kentucky; married Sally Pike. Pension: S30972
4. Jacob, born c1760, probably Bedford County, Virginia; died 19 March 1848, Lee County, Virginia; married Mary Price, 4 August 1786, Washington County, Virginia. Pension: SR2420
5. James, born 20 February 1762, Bedford County, Virginia; died after 4 March 1834, Washington County, Illinois; married (?). Pension: S32195
6. Job, born 29 April 1765, Bedford County, Virginia; died 12 January 1828, Lee County, Virginia; married Rebecca Smyth, 12 December 1790, Washington County, Virginia.
7. Priscilla, born c1766, Bedford County, Virginia; died after 1820; married Richard Price, 7 December 1790, Washington County, Virginia.
8. Hannah, born c1768, Bedford County, Virginia; married Edward Smyth, 7 September 1787, Washington County, Virginia.
9. Margaret, born c1770, probably Bedford County, Virginia; reportedly married John Simmons.
My husband’s line of descent:
- William Crabtree & Hannah Whitaker
- Abraham Crabtree & Mary (MNU)
- Benjamin Spear & Naomi Crabtree
- James Dulworth & Elizabeth Gwin Spear
- Abraham Dulworth & Mary Jane Adams
- Clayton Columbus Nation & Matilda Dulworth
- Oscar Eldon Sturgell & Ethel Anne Nation
- Edward Earl Stufflebean & Ruby Jewel Sturgell
- David Lee Stufflebean!