Category Archives: Ransone

Ransone Connection: Will of Walter Keeble, Gloucester County,VA 1748

I have to admit I thought I was going to be whipping through the Ransone family very quickly, as I wrote up the posts for the first several generations of the family, who settled in Virginia by 1642.

I was very wrong, but am thrilled because of the reason for my slow progress. I’ve already shared the abstract of the will of Flemstead Ransone.

Today, I will share a discovery that I made while trolling more of those fabulous Virginia Memory chancery records. While researching primary Ransone documents, a hit came up for Ambrose Ransone in Cumberland County, Virginia as a defendant in a lawsuit filed in June 1761. The plaintiffs were Thomas Davenport & wife Lucy and Catherine Ransone, spinster. At issue was the failure of Ambrose Ransone to give possession of several enslaved persons to his children, as they were willed to Ambrose’s wife by her father.

Readers, here is where it definitely pays to do your own research. I had seen the name Catherine Keeble online, but the only documentation was other online trees. We know how that goes. This Catherine Keeble was shown as the wife of Ambrose Ransone. There were only a handful of websites that pop up when the Ransone surname is searched and most say Ambrose’s wife’s name is unknown.

Well, she WAS Catherine Keeble and I have the proof!

Gloucester County, Virginia is one of those Virginia counties that you hope your family missed, as it lost all its records in 1820 and again in 1865 in courthouse fires.

The proof I found identifying Ambrose’s wife was the will of Walter Keeble, proved in court in 1743 – in GLOUCESTER COUNTY! How did I manage that if the county lost all its pre-1865 records?

Let’s go back to my Chancery Court record discovery  and the case of Thomas Davenport & Wife v. Ambrose Ransone. The will was found among the pages of the lawsuit, which was not in Gloucester, but in Cumberland County.

Will of Walter Keeble, written 23 March 1743
Proved in Gloucester County, VA Court 28 April 1748
Source: Virginia Memory, Cumberland County, VA Chancery File 1761:002

[Torn off] Keeble, being well of body but in sense and perfect memory. Imprimis, I bequeath my soul to Almighty God, my Heavenly Father, in hopes and full assurance of joyful resurrection to eternal life at the last day. My body to the earth from whence it came to be decently buried at the discretion of my friends. And all my worldly goods as followeth: – I give and ordain that depts be first paid.

Item, It is my will and I do freely give to my son, Humphrey Keeble, him and his Ares forever four hundred and forty three acres of land lying and being in the County of King and Queen, joining John Gwyns land hard by Potobaco path.

Item I give to my Son Humphrey, one Negro man named Jemes  one Negro woman named Abigal.

I lend to my daughter, Joye Brookes, one Negro wench named Letty, and her Children during her life and afterwards I give to be I give (sic) Equol divided amongst her daughters. I lend to my daughter Joce Brookes two negro boys named Minney and Harry Peg’s Children during her life and afterwards I give to be Equally divided amongst her daughters.

I lend to my daughter, Katherine Ransom, two Negroes, one boy named Bob, Fann’s boy and one Gerl named Letty. Then I give them to be equally divided amongst her Daughters.

Then my will is that the rest of my Estat shall be Equally Divided amongst my three sons, George, Walte and Humphrey and my will is that my three sons shall give their sisters ten pounds apiece in Clous, to be paid five pounds apece the first yere and five pounds the yer following.

my will is and I do ordain and appoint my Loving sons, George Keeble, Walter Keeble, Humphrey Keeble Exors of this my last will and testament. I put my hand and Seale 26 March Anno Domini, 1743.

Walter Keeble (seal)
John Wedmore
John Hunley
Richard Brooks
At a Court held for Gloucester County, the 28 day of April 1748
This will was this day proved in open court by oaths of John Wedmore John Hunley witnesses thereto and admitted to record and is recorded. John Clayton, Ct. Cur.

Here we have the proof that on of Walter Keeble’s daughters was C/Katherine Ransone.

Tomorrow, we will look at the rest of the lawsuit and also provide a family sketch of Ambrose Ransone and his wife, Catherine Keeble.


Follow Up: Will and Inventory of Flemstead Ransone, 1796, Buckingham County, VA

About a month ago, I shared family sketches of the Ransone Family who settled early in Virginia.

There is scarce, and sometimes conflicting, information found online for Flemstead Ransone, one of my husband’s direct ancestors. Part of the reason for that is because Flemstead owned land in more than one Virginia county, but lived in Buckingham County, which is a severely burned county with few surviving records.

I happened across an article in The Magazine of Virginia Genealogy written by Susan B. Chiarello and published in the February 2015 issue. It took some doing to find a copy of that issue, but I succeeded!

The notes in the article state that Flemstead’s will was part of the documents in Hopkirk vs. Ransome, heard by the U.S. 5th Circuit Court and, thus, a copy of his will, thankfully not housed in the Buckingham County courthouse, survives today.

Because the article is copyrighted, suffice it to say that Flemstead only named the four children who I believe were the youngest of his probable eight children – sons J.F. (John F.), William and daughters Elizabeth and Lucy. Flemstead also mentions “my beloved wife,” but neglects to name her.

I don’t know if the fact that Flemstead only left bequests to his younger children means that he had two sets of children by two wives or just that the elder children had already received their portions when they married. Elizabeth and Lucy were apparently unmarried when their father died in 1796.

However, Ms. Chiarello also mentioned that Flemstead’s ESTATE INVENTORY was also among the archived court papers held by The Library of Virginia (U.S. Circuit Court, 5th Circuit, Virginia District, Ended Cases, Box 77, BC 7420984, Hopkirk vs. Ransome,  Federal Records Collection, Archives and Manuscripts, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia).  Getting copies of the inventory took yet a bit more doing, but again, I was successful.

As far as I know, Flemstead Ransone’s inventory has never been published and isn’t under any copyright restriction, so here it is. Money is (Pounds) £. shillings.pence :

Inventory of F. Ransone’s Estate (a Copy)

17th September 1796 agreeable to an order from the Worshipful Court of Buckingham was sworn before us Archibald Wright Zadock Lackland & Robert Self to appraise the Estate of Flamstead Ransom.
Antho. Winston

Gib a £90 Hannah a £60 Jesse a £65   = £215.0.0
Ned a £90 Bob a £90 Leare a £25 =         £205.0.0
[Total] £415.0.0
Toney, £40.0.0
[Total]  £460.0.0
a parcel of hilling & weeding hoes, £1.4.0
6 plough hoes 24/ four axes 20, £2.4.0
3 wedges (Frou & Colter?), 0.12.0
1 Cross Cut saw & Currying knife, £1.4.0?
1 handsaw & a parcel of (?), 0.15.0
1 old spade & parsel of (Reap?) Hooks, 0.17/6.0
1 Plane (Lone?) jointer, 0.9.6
1 pr (steelyand?) 0.15.0
Parcel rum (hhd?), 2.3.0
2 barrels, 0.8.0
1 ditto, 0.1.0
Parcel of batter potts, 0.9.0 £12/0
Parcel of old (carks?), 0.12.0
wheat (size?) & 1/2 bushel, 0.9.0
2 old saddles & 2 pr. (?) 0.13.6
1 bell & hammer 0.3.0
1 pr iron traces, 0.9.0
3 scythes & Cradles, 0.12.0
P. Cart wheels & 1 yoke steers, £15.10.0
[total] £491.2.0

Brought over, £491.2.0
18 head cattle, 42.0.0
10 head sheep, 4.0.0
1 bay mare, 30.0.0
2 horses, 25.0.0
1 lamb, 1.10.0
Parcel of water vessels, 0.12.0
Parcel of cartings, 2.10.0
Kitchen furniture, 0.15.0
Bramble scythe & irons, 0.6.0
Two brass candlesticks & 2 moulds, 0.13.0
Parcel of pewter, 4.7.0
1 coffee pott, 0.4.0
1 chaffin Dish, 0.4.0
Pr flat irons, 0.12.0
1 hatchet, 1.4.0
Parcel of Books, 0.5.0
1 water pitcher, 0.6.0
1 smoothe board gun, 1.4.0
6 bottles, 0.4.0
Parcel glassware, 0.10.0
Parcel crockery ware & pewter tea pott, 0.14.0
Pepper mill 2/6 sheep shears 1/6, 0.4.0
4 tables £3.8.0 1 Desk £5, 8.8.0
11 Chairs £1.4/ parcel spinning wheels & real £1/10/, 2.14.0
2 p fire(?) 20/ 2 old (Slays??) 2/, 1.2.0
1 Cookery glass 12/ Sundries 4/., 0.16.0
4 Beds & furniture, 36.0.0
2 trunks & (?), 1.10.0
1 (Stile?), 30.0.0
12 hogs, 10.16.0
[Total] £699.18.6

Zadock Lackland
Robbin (his X mark) Self
Archd. Wright

at a court held for Buckingham county the 14th day of November 1796

This Inventory & appraisement of the
Estate of Flamstead Ransone decd was
returned and ordered to be recordede
Teste Rolfe Eldridge Clk

Copy Test Rolfe Eldridge Clk

Due to the lucky happenstance (maybe not to Flemstead’s heirs who lost the lawsuit) of Flemstead’s family being sued for monies owed to British merchants after the American Revolution, both the 1796 will and inventory of Flemstead Ransone exist even though they were originally recorded in Buckingham County, Virginia, which lost almost all its records in a courthouse fire in the 1860s.




Peter Ransom/Ransone/Immigrant Ancestor to VA by 1642

Last month, when I began my deep dive into the Perkins family early in Virginia, I had no idea that weeks later, I would still be writing about this same branch of the family, albeit collateral lines. Cousin Eugene was right on with the early Perkins and Purkins history that he kindly shared with me all those years ago.

Today, we are at the last, I think, of the stories about the ancestors in this branch of the family. Peter Ransone is the immigrant ancestor of this family.

Peter’s birth year is unknown,  but is estimated to be c1615 in England. No evidence as to the name of Peter’s wife has been found and he died at a relatively early age, as he is called deceased on 24 January 1658 in York County Court minutes.

Peter Ransom/Ransone is first mentioned in Virginia on 29 December 1642, when he was a witness to a land transaction.

However, it is possible that Peter might have grown up in Virginia as one Thomas Purefoy reportedly married one Lucy Ranson in England, and arrived in Virginia in 1621, with Lucy and their children following. It has been SPECULATED that Lucy might be Peter Ransone’s mother because the Purefoy family settled in Elizabeth City County, which is where Peter served as a representative to the House of Burgesses on 26 April 1652 and again on 25 November 1652.  A possible warning flag, though, is that I can’t find the source that identifies Thomas Purefoy’s wife’s name.

Peter probably died sometime in 1657 because on 24 January 1658, York County Court records include this entry [Virginia Colonial Abstracts, Series 2, Vol. 5, York County, 1657-1659, Footnote 6]:

The difference between George Hull, guardian to the orphans of Mr. Peter Ransom, dec’d, & Daniel Tucker, atty. of Mr. Jonathan Newell is ref. to the next court.

Oftentimes, guardians of minor children were family members. Is it possible that George Hull might be the brother of Peter’s unknown wife? That’s a loose end I will have to investigate.

Peter Ransone was granted a large tract of land on 9 June 1653 :

the 1100 acres formerly granted to Edmond Dawber on North River of Mobjack Bay was deserted and granted to Peter Ransom.

There is reference made to Peter Ransone’s will, but I have not found an image or even a transcription and it may have been filed in a burned county.


1. William, born c1640; died before 1684 as only George and James are called sons of Peter Ransone in a land patent.
2. George, born c1642; died between 19 March 1674, when he wrote his will, and 7 September 1675, when it was proved in Middlesex County, Virginia; married Margaret.
3. James,
born c1645; died c1706; married Unknown

George and James Ranson are the progenitors of all the early Virginia Ransone family as it is believed that William Ransone died either unmarried or had no surviving children to inherit legacies from their grandfather.