Tag Archives: Asa Thomson

Asa Thomson’s Orphaned Grandchildren Named in 1842 Will

There is one more Thomson story to be told,as Asa Thomson who married Diana Quarles named four orphaned grandchildren in his 1841 will.

When I first tried to crack through the Annie Thompson brick wall, I tentatively thought that John “Thompson,” whose estate was probated in September 1822, might be a good candidate for Annie’s father, especially when his wife was also named Ann. That theory has been totally disproven, but since there seems to be misinformation out there about the family, I thought I would share my findings here.

Asa Thomson’s Will, 1841
Fayette County, Kentucky
Will Book P:176-177
Source: FamilySearch

In the name of God Amen I Asa Thomson of the County of Fayette
being of Sound mind and memory at this time but Sensable of the decay of nature and the certainty of death in order to dispose of my Estate both real and personal according to my present desire do make this my last will and Testament as follows. Viz. Item It is my desire that my Exors or Executor hereafter named pay all my Just debts Item I lend unto my beloved wife Dianna Thomson during her natural life three choice slaves, two choice horses, and my Carriage & give Two thousand dollars in money and if she chooses to move to the Missouri to be carried there at the expence of my Estate or wheresoever she may choose to reside, and at her death the property loaned to be divided in eight equal parts and that my Executors pay to my daughter Polly Kirtley one Eighth part to my Son Roger Thomson one Do to Patsey Prewett One Do to my grand Sons, Sons of my Son John Thomson decd One Do viz Pike, William & John M. Thomson to be equally divided between them to my daughter Nancy Garth One eight part to my Son Asa Q. Thomson one eighth part and to my Son George Q. Thomson decd. children in the following order viz. to his fore (sic) last children by his last wife named Mary, Billinda Eliza, Virginia & Sarah Jane fifty dollars each & the balance to be equally divided between his two first children named Ennie Ann & Elvira Thomas and if either of the two should die before they come of age or marry the Surviving child to inherit the hole of the  departed childs Estate. Item I give to my daughter Nancy Garth a negro man named Alexander & a negro woman named Rachael together with her future increase a horse beast worth Eighty dollars two Feather beds & furniture & two Cows and calves to her & her heirs forever which property I value to fourteen hundred dollars. Item I have  given to each of my Children viz to Polley Kertly, Roger Thomson, Patsey Prewett John Thomson decd Asa Q. Thomson Robert Y Thomson and George Q. Thomson decd. property which I value to fourteen hundred dollars which I give to them and their heirs forever. Item It is my will & desire that all my Estate not above devised be sold in the following manner viz my Land One third in hand one third in twelve months & one third
in six months after and Lean upon the land until the last payment
is mad the purchaser giving bond with Approved Security, my negroes to be sold upon a credit of six months & my personal Estate to be sold upon the Same credit with bonds with Approved Security. Item It is my desire that my nephew James K. Thomson Shall have the privilege to take at the Selling price of my land a Linale? Slip? (lineal slip?) of land Supposed to Contain Six or Seven acres, to begin at a stone corner between him the Said James K. Thomson & myself near my spring branche & to run from thence to a strate line to Henry Rogers line so as to make the line strate between him the Said James K. Thomson & myself. Item my grand son John J. Thomson lost his mother when an infant and we have raised him & educated him thus far mostly at my expence & his father is not to be charged with it and for the regard I have for him I give him my Silver watch. Item It is my desire after my wife has received the portion above named the hole (sic) of my Estate be Sold as above directed & be divided in eighth equal lots & that my daughter Polly Kirtly, my Son Roger Thomson, Patsey Prewett, my grand Sons, Sons of my Son John Thomson decd. viz Pike, William and John M. Thomson, Nancy Garth, Asa Q. Thompson Robert Y. Thomson & George Q. Thomson decd. two daughters named Enne Ann & Elvera Thomson each to receive the one eighth part viz the grand children named to
receive their Fathers portion to them and their heirs forever. Lastly I hereby Constitute & appoint my nephew Wm. Z. thomson, Robert P. Kenney & Robert Innis Executors to this my last will and Testamant Authorizing them or either of them if the others fail to qualify to Sell & convey the whole of my Estate both real and personal, and it is my
will that neither of my aforesaid Executors Shall be compelled
to give Security in Court for their Performance Given under my
hand & Seal this 25 day of Jany 1842.

Asa Thomson (Seal)

William Mason
John M. Letcher
William Letcher

There are grandchildren mentioned here who would not normally be the easiest to trace because John Thomson’s estate administration only mentions minor children and does not actually name them. John was serving at Fort Hempstead in Howard County when he was accidentally shot and killed while showing a sentinel how to manage his weapon.

John’s widow, Ann B. Ellis, returned to Fayette County after her husband died and married (2) Horace Coleman in 1825. After Horace passed away, she applied for a War of 1812 widow’s pension, based on John Thomson’s service. It was denied because she had remarried, but in the application, she stated that she was formerly Ann B. Ellis, or Nancy Ellis, and that she and John Thomson married on 14 February 1817 in Fayette County, Kentucky. I haven’t found that record among Fayette County marriages and it may have been lost to time.

Asa Thomson confirms that John and Ann had three sons named Pike, William and John M.

The second interesting tidbit in this will is the mention of grandson John J. Thomson. Asa says that his mother died when he was an infant so he has raised John in his own family. He also obviously knows who the father is, but doesn’t mention him, nor does he mention the name of the mother.

The mystery here is whether Asa and Dianna had a daughter who had an illegitimate son, who carried the Thomson name or whether one of his sons had a first wife who died soon and his parents raised the child. It’s a mystery, but John J. Thomson is definitely part of Asa’s descendants.



Asa Thomson & Diana Quarles

NOTE: I am in Salt Lake City for RootsTech 2017. There will be daily posts, but they won’t go online until the evening since I will be in sessions during the day. Normally, my posts are queued up to go online at 6:00 a.m. This week, 11:00 p.m. will be more like it, but they will go up.

So far, I’ve ruled out Rodes, William and Clifton Thomson as potential fathers for Annie Holland. William Thomson and Ann Rodes 4th son was Asa, born 25 January 1764, probably Louisa County, Virginia. He married Diana Quarles about 1788, probably in Goochland County, Virginia.

Asa left a will, written in 1841 and proved in March 1842 in Fayette County, Kentucky. In addition, court records include an inventory of sale for Diana Thomson, “lately departed,” recorded on 18 November 1844, also in Fayette County. Diane was reportedly born 8 June 1764 in Orange County, Virginia.


  1. Mary (Polly), born 25 February 1789, Virginia; died 15 June 1851, Boone County, Kentucky; married Robert Kirtley, 1 December 1806, Fayette County, Kentucky. He was born 30 May 1786, Virginia; died 9 April 1872, Boone County, Kentucky.
  2. Roger, born 28 May 1790, Virginia; died 4 February 1875, Christian County, Kentucky; married Martha (Patsey) K. Tilford, 21 February 1816, Mercer County, Kentucky. She was born 4 October 1795; died 31 January 1877, Christian County, Kentucky.
  3. Martha (Patsey), born 15 March 1792, Kentucky; died 1850-1860, probably Randolph County, Missouri; married Price Prewitt, 27 February 1818, Fayette County, Kentucky. He was born c1790 and died 9 February 1827, Howard County, Missouri. Price served in the War of 1812.
  4. John, born about 19 March 1794, Kentucky, died 16 September 1822, Howard County, Missouri; married Ann B. Ellis, 14 February 1817, Fayette County, Kentucky. She was born 14 October 1799; died 5 June 1885, Fayette County, Kentucky. Ann married (2) Horace Coleman, 13 January 1825, Fayette County, Kentucky. He was born c1790; died 18 December 1846, Fayette County, Kentucky.
  5. Nancy, born c1797; Kentucky; died after 1880, probably Scott County, Kentucky; married Thomas Garth, 16 April 1814, Fayette County, Kentucky. Thomas was born 1792; died 20 April 1840, Bourbon County, Kentucky.
  6. Asa Quarles, born 29 November 1798, Kentucky; died 1860-1870, probably Randolph County, Missouri; married Margaret Wallace, 13 March 1821, Howard County, Missouri. She was born 27 September 1803; died 18 April 1886, Ellis County, Texas.
  7. Robert Yancy, born 21 November 1800, Kentucky; died 16 August 1863, Saline County, Missouri; married Lucy Nowlin, 9 April 1826, Saline County, Missouri. She was born 23 June 1809, Kentucky; died 8 May 1889, Saline County, Missouri.
  8. George Quarles, born 12 April 1803, Kentucky; died 1839, Howard County, Missouri, when he estate was probated; married Mary Jane Pulliam, 24 June 1829, Saline County, Missouri. She married (2) Asa Prewitt, 9 February 1841, Howard County, Missouri.

These children were all named in Asa’s will, so, once again, there is no place for Annie.

William and Ann (Rodes) Thomson had two other sons. Youngest David has already been crossed off  the list because he was a little too young to be the father of Annie and his children have all been accounted for.

The remaining son is John, born about 6 June 1766. Data on him is fuzzy, although a newspaper announcement of his death in 1834 said he was formerly of Scott County and died in Christian County, Kentucky. He did not leave a will – there is another John Thompson who died there in 1835, who did leave a will, but it is clear they are two different men of the same name.

However, there is one more piece to this convoluted puzzle, which came to light as I dug through probate, census and marriage records in Howard County, Missouri as I tracked Asa and Diana’s children detailed in this post.

Tomorrow will focus on the Family History Library since I am in Salt Lake City for RootsTech, but the surprising twist to my Annie Thompson Holland riddle will unfold in Tuesday’s post.