The Lewis Family of Wilkes County, NC, 1700s: A Timeline, Part 2

On Thursday, in Part 1, I examined the various Gideon and James Lewises who appear in early Rowan, Wilkes and Ashe Counties, North Carolina records.

Gideon, born no later than 1747, and who might be related to Samuel, William, James & Richard, all in Rowan County in 1768.
Gideon, born no later than 1764, first in the land records in 1785.
Gideon, born no later than 1766, in Nall’s Company with James Lewis in 1787 and with James Sr. and James Jr. in 1790 census.

NOTE: It is possible that the two younger Gideon’s are the same man, meaning there is a Gideon Sr. and Gideon Jr., not necessarily father and son.

James, born no later than 1747, in Rowan County in 1768.
James, born no later than 1769, with James Sr. and Gideon in 1790.

I had seen online references to the 1810 census which includes one Gideon Lewis, 45+ living in Barren County, KY next door to James Lewis.

While surfing the web, I came across a Missouri county history that contains an entry for one James Lewis, who reportedly died there shortly after the 1860 census when he was enumerated aged 92, living with son Isaac and his family.

This entry for James Lewis in Annals of Platte County, Missouri by William McClung Paxton, page 557 states that James was born 6 September 1767, North Carolina and married Elizabeth Stewart. James removed first to Barren County, Kentucky, then to Crawford County, Indiana, then Boone County, Missouri in 1820 and Jackson County, Missouri in 1822.

One of his stops was reportedly to visit Daniel Boone!

This biographical sketch is invaluable in piecing together some of the Lewis history, as I now not only know that James married Elizabeth Stewart (daughter of John Stewart, who was killed by Indians), but there is a complete list of their children, with exact dates of birth!

Because James’s Isaac was literate – having been appointed County Clerk in 1846 – and therefore might have kept a family Bible, these children and dates are believable.

Children of James and Elizabeth:

  1. William, born 27 September 1787
  2. Jesse, born 9 April 1790
  3. Ann, born 27 February 1792
  4. Gideon, born 27 September 1795
  5. Joshua, born 26 November 1797
  6. Stewart, born 29 May 1800
  7. Daniel P(ennington), born 20 January 1802
  8. Byram, born 13 August 1804
  9. Mary, born 16 November 1806
  10. James, born 12 November 1808
  11. Isaac T(errill), born 29 January 1811
  12. Elizabeth, born 10 October 1813

Now, the 1790 census contains three James Lewises, all recorded as Jas. Lewis.

Two are next door to each other, with Jas. Lewis 121 matching this James, his wife and two males under 16.

His immediate neighbor, Jas. Lewis, is enumerated as 134 – one male 16+, three males -16 and 4 females.

Being next door neighbors would lead me to theorize that James who ended up in Platte County, Missouri might be a son of James who is living next door.

Just five doors away from James and James, we find Gideon Lewis 121 – one male +16, two males -16 and one female.

Now, we need to take a look at the 1810 census of Barren County, Kentucky, a place where James Lewis, born 1767, moved, according to the Platte County history.

Next door to James in Barren County, we find Gideon Lewis, whose household includes one male 45+, one female 45+, one male 16-25 and one female 16-25.

Some have posited that this Gideon is the father of James, but I think it is much more likely that this Gideon is the man from the 1790 census, living a few doors away from James Lewis Sr. and James Jr.

They are all enumerated in the 10th Company, while the other Gideon is living in the 16th Company neighborhood.

By 1800, there are two James Lewises living in Ashe County – one over 45 and one 16-25, neither of whom fit the profile of James who moved on to Barren County.

This reinforces my belief that James who married Elizabeth Stewart may have been a son of next door James in 1790 and that the senior James chose not to move west with his two probable sons.

I believe that James and probable brother Gideon moved westward with their families by 1800.

Unfortunately, they don’t appear in land records or even the Barren County tax lists in the years preceding and following the 1810 census.

With this new information about the James Lewises, can anything more be gleaned from the Gideon Lewises? And – can a new theory be postulated as to the parents of Feelie/Phebe Lewis who married Edward King, c1767?

Stay tuned for Part 3.




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