Tag Archives: James Hendricks

James Hendricks of York County, PA, Frederick County, MD & Rowan County, NC, 1700s

Well, we’ve arrived at another likely immigrant ancestor in my husband’s family tree. 🙂 At least, James is the earliest connection anyone has been able to make.

James Hendricks’ year of birth is unknown, but probably no later than 1717 if birth year estimates for his son and grandchildren are correct. His place of birth is also unknown. He may be the immigrant ancestor, but there were other Hendricks families in York County, Pennsylvania in the 1700s and, in fact, there was a second James Hendricks, born c1722 who married Priscilla Pettit and settled in what is today’s West Virginia.

My husband’s James Hendricks married at least twice, but I haven’t found a shred of documentation for even the given name of his first wife, who would have been the mother of John, my husband’s line. James Hendricks married (1) Unknown and (2) Christianna (some say Roland, daughter of Gaspar Roland, which is possible as the family had close connections over many years. However, there is no documentation for this statement either.

James Hendricks’ ethnicity – Anglo or German – is also uncertain, but if he was of Anglo ancestry, it isn’t evident as his FAN club is strictly German and of Brethren religious persuasion.

James Hendricks was a well known Dunker elder and had tiffs even within the hierarchy of the Church of the Brethren due to his evolving religious beliefs.

James created quite a paper trail in his lifetime, but it’s too bad that some of it didn’t name his wives and give more detailed information about the births of his children.

James was a wood turner and wheelwright by trade.

Here are some of the records created in James Hendricks’ lifetime:

1740’s and early 1750s – Assumed marriage and birth of his children by first wife

1755, May 17 – Left York County, PA; granted 62 acres in Frederick County, Maryland

1755, May 7 – Served as executor of will of Ulrich Wechsler, Baltimore County, Maryland [Question – why was James the executor of this man’s will? The surname is unfamiliar to me, which is unusual for this family.]

1761, December 30 – Witness to the will of Ulrich Echler, also Baltimore County, Maryland

1764, February 24 – Witness to the will of Andrew Magill, Baltimore County, Maryland

1765, 9 February – Witness to the will of Conrad Broust, Baltimore County, Maryland

1768, 23 June – James Hendricks of Baltimore County, Wheelwright, sold his 62 acre tract What You Will in Baltimore County, on Linganore Creek to Margaret Nusbaum  for £25.

1769, October 16 – James Hendricks of Baltimore County, a turner, and wife Christianna, sold 100 acres called Hendrick’s First Choice, for £75 to Adam Smith.

1771, January 18 – Witness to the will of Philip Heir, Baltimore County, Maryland.

1774 – Rowan County, North Carolina court bound orphan Geoerge Adams to James Hendricks to learn the trades of wheelwright and turner.

1782 – James Hendricks on Rowan County, North Carolina tax list with 56 acres, 41 horses and 16 cattle

1783 – James Hendricks appears on a list of 160 names of Tories. Brethren were pacifists, who weren’t politically active.

1788, November Term – Estate administration for James Hendricks, deceased granted to John Hendricks and Joseph Roland. [Note: Joseph Roland may have served if he was the brother of Christianna – another possible clue.]

Children of James Hendricks, listed in order of their 1789 court petition to divide James’s tracts of land to his heirs:

Rowan County, NC Court Minutes
5 May 1789 Petition to Divide Land
Source: FamilySearch

  1. Daniel, born c1740, York County, Pennsylvania; died after 1791 estate settlement; said to have married Mary Roland
  2. Peter, born c1742, York County, Pennsylvania; died after 1791 estate settlement
  3. John, born c1744, York County, Pennsylvania; died after 1798, probably in Montgomery or Warren County, Kentucky. No probate or estate settlement has been found for him; married Unknown

Children with Christianna:

4. William, born c1771; died after 1791 estate settlement
5. Henry, born c1773; died after 1791 estate settlement

Christianna Hendricks died before 5 February 1796 when the inventory of her estate was recorded by the Rowan County, North Carolina court;

Rowan County Court Minutes, unpaged
Source: FamilySearch

About the same time, most of the Hendricks family headed to a new life in Kentucky.


Trying to Untangle the House of Hendricks, Rowan County, NC, 1700s

Before I traveled down the Roland branch of the family tree, I last shared information about the family of Jacob Hendricks and Frina (Fanny) Roland, who left Rowan County, North Carolina for Kentucky in the late 1700s.

There are two more generations of Hendricks to share, that of John and his father, James, who was an elder in the Brethren Church and an unordained minister.

James Hendricks, who left York County, Pennsylvania when he was granted land in Frederick County, Maryland in 1755, lived in places that have some helpful records to piece together his movements and that of his family.

However, given the repetition of the same names, sorting out the various Hendricks men is not an easy task and I know there are online errors in dates.

First, James Hendricks’ year of birth is unknown. As he was granted land in 1755, it is safe to assume that he was over the age of 21 and then born no later than 1734. We can take his birth year back even further by looking at his son John’s family.  As John’s son, Jacob, was born 11 November 1768, likely in Frederick County, Maryland, John would have been perhaps about 25 at the time and born c1743.

If James was also about 25 when his son was born (John and Jacob were older children of each of their respective parents), then his birth year could be as early as, say, 1718.

Today, I’d like to share tidbits I’ve gleaned from the tax records, 1790 census and court minutes in Rowan County, North Carolina.

First, we have the tax lists. Rowan County has some very early lists dating to 1758. However, they are incomplete and spotty in terms of the years covered. The following Hendricks men were found on them:

1767? (very faded)Peter Hendricks with 157 acres of land

1783 – Petition from Henry Hendricks, asking for tax exemption due to age and infirmity. One of the signers was David Hendricks.

The lists for 1782 and 1783 are mixed together and not all are dated, but in this grouping are:

1782/83James Hendricks, 56 acres, 41 horses and 16 cattle and Peter Hendricks, 12 acres

1784-1786William Hendricks, David Hendricks Sr., David Hendricks Jr., Henry Hendricks

1788 – John Hendricks, in Capt. Abbott’s Company, insolvent, no land, one poll

Lists are then missing until the 1790s and no Hendricks were found on them.

Next, the court minutes for Rowan County are intact. It would have been more helpful if the clerk had written out estate sales reports and inventories, as clerks in other counties have done, but at least I found some names.

I will go more in depth about James Hendricks’ children when he has his own post. In order to prove that there was more than one instance of men with the same name, here is a piece of proof. In 1789, James’s five sons – Daniel, Peter and John, along with William and Henry, who had a guardian – asked the court to equitably divide their father’s various tracts of land. Whether or not he had surviving daughters is unknown.

Let’s assume that the sons are listed in birth order. It’s also important to know that James Hendricks married twice and the two younger sons are by Christianna (?Roland).

Since William and Henry are under 21 (and the estate was settled in 1791 – maybe when the youngest son reached legal age?), let’s estimate their birth years as 1768 and 1770.

Daniel, Peter and John were most likely born in the 1740s.

Court minutes also include approvals for the estate administrations of Phillip Hendricks in November 1787 and that of David Hendricks in 1788. It is noted that David’s wife was Margaret and his orphan, Henry, had his mother named as his guardian in November 1788.

Finally, the 1790 census has ELEVEN Hendricks households in 1790. All have one male over 16, so the families are all fairly young.

I’ve highlighted James’s possible sons in the census list below.

His son, John, had one adult son in 1790 – another John.

One observation I made about the 1790 census is that Abraham, Frederick and Isaac are not names I’ve come across in ANY Hendricks families. It’s certainly not impossible that they belong, but as Hendricks isn’t an uncommon name, I tend to think that these three might be a different family.

Source: Ancestry


Daniel, 4 males under 16, 6 females
James, 3 males under 16, 3 females
Peter, 1 male under 16, 4 females
Daniel, 4 males under 16, 5 females
John, 1 male under 16, 3 females
David, 2 males under 16, 2 females
John, 1 males under 16, 3 females
Abraham, only one male over 16
Frederick, 1 male under 16, 3 females
Isaac, 0 males under 16, 3 females
Phillip, 2 males under 16, 1 female

These three resources prove that there were adult Hendricks men besides James who were early in Rowan County – Henry, who asked for his tax exemption in 1783. David was likely his son, since he was the only one on of the signers who was a Hendricks. With age and infirmity cited, I would think that Henry was at least 60 years old and probably older.

There was Peter Hendricks, taxed in 1782, William and another David (Senior?), taxed 1784-86, possibly another Henry if the 1783 request was granted, plus insolvent John Hendricks in 1788.

Phillip Hendricks’ 1787 estate administration throws yet another man into the mix. One of the two Davids died in 1788, the one who married Margaret and had a son Henry, who was a minor.

Look at the repetition of given names!

Since we know that Daniel, Peter and John all survived their father, the remaining names in 1790 – James, Daniel, David and Phillip – are likely children of Daniel and Peter because John’s sons named Daniel and Phillip were born in the 1770s and still at home in 1790.

What we don’t know are the names of any sons of Henry who was elderly in 1783 or if Phillip who died in 1787 was married and/or had children or if David who died in 1788 had sons older than Henry who were of legal age.

Land records for Rowan County are extant, but unfortunately very few of them name relationships or state how the grantor obtained the land being sold.

With this overview, we will next look at the family of John Hendricks, father of Jacob Hendricks who married Frina Roland.