Tag Archives: Samuel W. Scott

George Scott of Washington County, KY 1792

Some time ago, I wrote about Samuel W. Scott, the “natural born child of Ally Scott deceased” who was living in Washington County, Kentucky when he was bound out to George Thompson to learn the trade of draper.

Washington County, Kentucky was the first county created after Kentucky attained statehood, named, of course, after George Washington.

Since Samuel was born out of wedlock and court records haven’t shed any light on the matter, I am trying to determine who the parents of Alley Scott might be.

Luckily, early Kentucky records are plentiful and, by plentiful, I mean that counties began keeping not only marriages, land and probate records early on, but they also kept YEARLY tax lists, usually from the time of county formation.

Washington County is not a burned county and its tax records begin the same year it formed – 1792! Unfortunately, the 1800 census for Kentucky didn’t survive, but there is one for 1810.

That year, Washington County had but a handful of heads of household with the Scott surname. Specifically, there were only seven and it’s likely that most, if not all, of these Scotts were related given the time period and the fact that Scott isn’t a super common surname – not rare, but not abundant either.

First, we have George Scott, a male over 45, with a female over 45, a male 16-25 and 2 males under the age of 10. George Scott could be the father of Ally Scott, who was probably somewhere between the ages of 16 and 21 (born c1776-1783) when she gave birth to Samuel W. Scott on 1 January 1797.

Second, we have John Scott, also a male over 45 with one female over 45, 2 females 16-25, one male 16-25, one female 10-15, one male 10-15, 2 males under 10 and 2 females under 10. Being over the age of 45, John could possibly be the father Ally Scott if he had older children already out of the home by 1810.

There are four Scotts in the 26-44 age bracket so of an age to be a brother to Ally Scott:

Samuel Scott had one female in the home also aged 26-44 and one female under the age of 10.

Robert Scott, aged 26-44, had one female also aged 26-44, one male 10-15, two females 10-15 and 2 females under 10.

James Scott, aged 26-44, has one female 16-25, one male 10-15, one female under 10 and one male under 10.

Richard Scott, aged 26-44, had one female 26-44, one male 16-25, one female 10-15, two males under 10 and two females under 10.

Next, I have to wonder where Samuel W. Scott was living in 1810, when he would have been 13 years old. If he was living with a Scott relative, then he would have to be living with either Robert or James, as they are the only two with a male in the 10-15 year age range. One thing to keep in mind is that all of Samuel W. Scott’s children have not been identified with the exception of one daughter, Eramanthus Elizabeth Scott, my husband’s ancestress, and Robert J. Scott, who lived with his sister and her husband, James Holland, in 1850. Could Samuel have been the nephew of Robert Scott in Washington County (and the teen in the 10-15 age range in 1810) and who named his son for the man who took him in and raised him? It is a definite possibility.

In order to find out if and how all these Scotts in 1810 might be related, I read the Washington County tax lists beginning in 1792. Up until that time, its land had been part of Nelson county, which touches its western border. I did backtrack to Nelson County, hoping that some of these Scotts – like John and George – might have been living there when Washington County formed, but their names are not found on any Nelson County tax list.

However, George Scott is found regularly in Washington County beginning with the very first tax list created in 1792. In fact, George Scott is the only Scott found there in 1792. There was one titheable over the age of 21 (himself), but there were THREE males in the 16-21 age range at home. He also had 100 acres of land, 8 horses and 22 cattle.

The 1793 list is missing, but in 1794, we have George, Robert and Richard and in 1795, George, Richard, Robert and John all appear.

By 1797, George, Robert, Richard and Absolem are listed and in 1799, we have George, Robert, Richard, James and Absolem, who later removed to Cumberland County, Kentucky.

Early Scott marriage records are intact for Washington County:

Robert married Nancy Clifton, 7 August 1795
Richard married Jane Smith, 6 May 1796
James married Martha Bowles, 2 August 1799
Hannah married James Clark, 26 August 1799
Anna married Samuel Thompson, 29 November 1804
William married Levicy Isaacs, 2 January 1807
Martha married Richard Carlile, 26 May 1807
Samuel married Jane Seaton, 8 June 1809

Two other Scotts, Mourning and Sally, also married there, in 1806 and 1809 respectively, but they have been identified as daughters of John Scott, so I will assume that information is correct for now.

Robert Scott continued to live in Washington County until the 1830 census, when he was 50-59 years old. There is a Robert Scott in Green County who is aged 60-69 and might be the same man.

Richard Scott was aged 60-69 in 1830 when he was living in Washington County. He hasn’t been found after that time. Hi son, George, born c1801, reportedly died in 1856 in Andrew County, Missouri.

James Scott was aged 26-44 in 1810 when he was living in Washington County, but hasn’t been found after that time. There is a James Scott who died intestate in Howard County, Missouri in 1832 who may be this man.

James Clark who married Hannah Scott appears to have moved to Henry County, Kentucky by 1810.

William Scott who married Levicy Isaacs removed to Howard County, Missouri and is the only person in this Scott group who lived to 1850. Howard County is also where Samuel W. Scott, son of Alley Scott, lived. William reported that he was 74 years old, so born c1776, in Virginia. From this, I believe that he was likely a son of George Scott, who then lived in Virginia at the time of the American Revolution.

Samuel Thompson who married Anna Scott lived in Washington County in 1810, but isn’t found after that time.

Samuel Scott who married Jane Seaton removed to Vanderburgh County, Indiana and died there between 1820 and 1830, as Jane was head of household in 1830. It is said that Samuel built the first house there in 1817.

Richard Carlile who married Martha Scott also removed to Vanderburgh County, Indiana, so it is likely that Martha was the sister of Samuel Scott.

There is one extremely annoying discovery I made in the land records of Washington County. George Scott sold land in 1802 and he was identified as a resident of Henry County, where some of the Scott family moved.

In March 1802, Deed Book B:563, George Scott and his wife are found in the land records, but his wife is only shown as “George Scott and __________ his wife.” Even at the time of the final recording, only George’s name was mentioned.

The tax records of Henry County include George in 1802, but state that his land was in “Clarke” County. A follow up in those counties uncovered no further information about George and George was back living in Washington County for the 1810 census.

George might be the George Scott living in Bourbon County, Kentucky in 1820, as there was no man by that name there in Washington County in 1810 and he is over 45 years old. It’s also possible that George died in Washington County between 1810 and 1820, but no probate record has been found for him.

At this point in time, I tend to believe that George Scott is the father of Allie Scott and grandfather of Samuel W. Scott. He was likely born c1745 in Virginia, but I have no idea about the county where he lived. His wife’s name is unknown but Richard appears to be his oldest son and born c1770 so George probably married about 1769.

His children were likely Richard, Robert, James, Alley, Hannah, William, Anna, Samuel and Martha, born in that order between 1770-1789.

When I have enough free time, I might venture into Virginia records to see if it is possible to pick up the trail of a George Scott, born in the 1740s who disappears from the records by 1792.

For now, though, this is the end of the Scott line.




Diving into Kentucky Thompson Records

I wish I could say how excited I was about my discoveries during a trip to the Family History Library. After one of those “leave no stone unturned” marathons, I have little to show for my efforts.

A few more facts were duly recorded, but no smoking gun was found for Samuel W. Scott, nor Ephraim Thompson, nor for Lawrence Thompson.

Here are my “best guess” scenarios of my current theories:

  1. Facts: Samuel W. Scott was born 1 January 1797, the natural son of Alley Scott, deceased, recorded when he was bound out to George Thompson in 1812 to learn the art of draper (person who worked with cloth). Samuel’s only identified son was named Robert. The only Scotts living in Washington County, Kentucky in 1796 were Richard, George and Robert Scott. Robert married Nancy Clifton in 1795, so was born no later than 1774. The census places him in the age range to be born 1770-1780. Richard was slightly older, born 1760-1770. George Thompson was over 45 in 1810, thus born no later than 1764, and died in 1814, as an estate sale was held in January 1815 and recorded in the court records. Among the items in his inventory were cotton for cloth and a cotton wheel. It appears that Richard and Robert might be brothers and, depending on when George was born, he might be their father and the father of Alley Scott, mother of Samuel. No other children are mentioned for Alley and I think she might have died giving birth. Robert was newly married in 1795 and it is possible that he and wife Nancy raised little Samuel until he was old enough to learn a trade. There are a lot of maybes here, but there are no facts yet discovered that contradict this theory. Next, I need to research more about George Scott, as he owned 75 acres of land in 1810, but is gone from Washington County, Kentucky by 1820.

On to problem #2, Ephraim Thompson. I found very little else on Ephraim Thompson with no new data from Mercer County, Kentucky and only a couple of tidbits in Washington County, Kentucky:

2. Facts: Ephraim Thompson was called “Esquire” in several of the court sessions in Washington County, Kentucky in 1815, so he likely had the opportunity for some education and was literate. He appears on the 1817 tax roll there, but is gone in 1818, which fits with an arrival in Missouri before 28 May 1821, when he was executor of the estate of Grace Arnold. The fact that Grace Arnold had a son, Price, of legal age, but named Ephraim Thompson as her executor also points to the fact that he had experience in court matters and Grace obviously trusted him.

Problem #3 is Lawrence Thompson, who I still believe to be the father of Ephraim Thompson and others. Newly discovered information:

3. Facts: Lawrence Thompson first bought land in Mercer County, Kentucky in September 1791. He is not on the 1789 tax roll for Mercer County. Several years are then missing, but Lawrence Thompson appears on the 1794 rolls with two tithables. The second tithable could well be Ephraim, who was born c1771-1775. Lawrence Thompson disappears from the Mercer County tax roll after 1796 and appears next door in Washington County after that time. A search of land records revealed that he sold two pieces of property, one in 1795 and one in 1797. Both sales were in the deed index under Lawrence’s name, but both deeds included the name of wife Anne/Anna as the second grantor. Lawrence Thompson remained on the Washington County tax roll through 1815. He is then gone and, although he owned land at that time, there are no deeds to be found showing the disposal of that land. There is also no mention of any probate proceedings for Lawrence Thompson.

There were no Thompsons at all on the 1789 tax list of Mercer County, but when Lawrence appears on the 1794 list, these men are also listed:

Thompson, Archibald             1                                              8                      Thompson, David                     1                                              1
Thompson, Thomas                 1                                              3                      6
Thompson, Thomas                 1                                              2                      20
Thompson, William                 1                                              3                      2
Thompson, William                 1                                              4                      3
Thompson, William                 1                                            9                       30

The first number is white male tithables over 21, the second- #horses owned and the third – #cattle owned. It seems likely that he could be related to one or more of these other men. I suspect that David Thompson might be his son.

I am somewhat stumped at the point on Lawrence Thompson. Recently, I came across this information in the Thompson Archives on Rootsweb, posted in 1999 by brothers Shay and David Blakeway:

JOHN THOMPSON AND PRISCILLA VA mid 1750’s, to Orange Co NC to Rowan Co NC to KY not to be confused with any other Thompson lines I have ever mentioned to the group except
John is probably a brother or cousin to Lawrence, Thomas and /or Closes Thompson) This John who married Priscilla had as children:
1 John Thompson,
2Ann Thompson,
3Lawrence Thompson born 1755 in Virginia who first married Eleanor Thompson and then Martha McNee having as his second wife Frances Thompson who married first James Booth and then Thomas Wheeler and John D. Thompson who married Elizabeth A. Elsey. This Lawrence is often confused with he other Lawrence Laurence Thompsons living in North Carolina during the mid to late 1700’s and later in Kentucky
4 Evan Thompson who married Chloe Bennett and had as children Daniel, John, Lucy who married first Joseph Duncan and second Allen Vaughn, David , Gabriel, Nancy , Rice, Austin, Chloe, and Sarah Evan’s revolutionary war pension application shows Orange Co 27 Aug 1765 as the place and date of Evan’s birth.

This 2ANN THOMPSON MARRIED JOHN ROBINSON and had Elizabeth “Betsy” Robinson, This family is not of my direct line however, they have been proven to lived in Frederick Co Va during the Mid 1750’s to Orange County NC in 1760 on to Rowan County NC and then into Kentucky about 1783 John Thompson and Lawrence Thompson received land warrants in Lancaster
Co, Pennsylvania on March 17 1738 No. 64 and 65, It is probable that the recipient John is the John in this paragraph in my opinion

An entry was made by John Thompson on 31 Oct 1778 for 500 acres in Rowan Co NC . The tract was surveyed on 21 July 1779 the grant issued on 21 March 1780. Chain carriers were listed as Lawrence and Evan Thompson. The description of the 500 acre tract on the north side of the S. Yadkin River states that included his improvement, indicating that John and Priscilla lived on the land some time prior to receiving title for it.

While residents of Rowan CO, two or possibly three of John and
Priscilla’s sons served the Revolutionary cause. Lawrence and Evan
services are documented by pension applications. John did not live long enough to receive a pension.

A tract of 400 acres “on a branch of Holeman’s Creek including where he now lives” was surveyed for John Thompson of Augusta Co Va by John Rutherford on Nov 28 1751. Closs Thompson served as marker, John and Reese Lewis were chain carriers. Another survey of 55 acres which joined the first tract and lands of Thomas Moore, was made on 1 May 1754. A note on the cover of each survey states that it was paid for by Evan Jones. The land where the Thompsons lived actually lay in Frederick Co as was made clear by the deeds issued by Thomas Lord Fairfax in April of 1760. In all probability plans for the move to Orange Co NC had been made well before the deeds were issued. On Sept 19 1760 John and Priscilla Thompson of Orange Co NC sold both properties to Thomas Heaton of Frederick Co Virginia.

The 300 acre tract John and Priscilla purchased in Orange County
bordered the land of Robert Thompson and Thomas and Ann Finney
Thompson. On Feb 19 1765 they deeded this tract to Jonas Chamberlain of Lancaster Co. Pennsylvania. The exact date of their move to Rowan County is not known, but I found Evan, their son’s birth there in the Revolutionary war pension records as mentioned elsewhere in this section.

In 1783 these Thompsons moved again, this time to the recently opened Blue Grass section of Kentucky of which they had sold on Aug 5 1783 the 500 acres on the Yadkin River to Joseph Pearson. One of their contacts in Kentucky was Capt. Laurence Thompson, son of Thomas, under whom Lawrence, son of John, had served in the Revolution, and who appears to have acted as the latter’s security in April 1779 marriage in Rowan County. The signature of Evan, John and Lawrence are affixed to a petition of inhabitants of Lincoln Co KY to the General Assembly of Virginia for a town in that county. The petition was not dated, but it is believed to have been drawn up about 1783 or 84.

In less than 10 years after this family’s move to Kentucky John Thompson died in Mercer County. His will, dated 20 Aug 1792 names his wife Priscilla and sons John and Evan. Priscilla and John were named executors; John Bennett and John Wilcoxon witnessed the document. It was proved on Jan 29 1793 before the Mercer County Court.

There is obviously more than one Lawrence Thompson mentioned here. Evan Thompson who married Chloe Bennett married in Mercer County, Kentucky on 25 April 1792. In 1810, he is in the Mercer County census, aged 45+.

If the data in the Blakeway post is accurate, there are some major clues here to be followed which might sort out the ancestry of “my” (apparent) Lawrence Thompson.

Guess what I will be doing on my next visit to the Family History Library this summer?

Sometimes You Just Have to Jump In – S.W. Scott

A new line of research has to begin somewhere, doesn’t it? Samuel W. Scott of Howard County, Missouri is beginning to remind me a lot of Johannes Jensen of Copenhagen, Denmark. Johannes’s origins were a complete mystery until pieces fell into place indicating he was born in the Unwed Mothers’ Hospital and given up to be apprenticed a few days after his birth in 1810.

Samuel W. Scott is another huge mystery. He married Sarah Thompson in Howard County, Missouri in 1821. The Thompsons are another sticky wicket about whom I’ve written, but I am quite certain at this point that she was a daughter of Ephraim Thompson of Washington County, Kentucky. The Thompsons migrated to Missouri before 1820.

Samuel left precious few crumbs to follow in Howard County. He died before 13 August 1835 when Elmore Thompson began the administration of his estate. Census records indicate that he and Sarah had a handful of children, but I’ve only been able to identify two likely candidates – Eramanthus Elizabeth Scott who married James Hollon and Robert J. Scott, who married Elizabeth Jane Massey/Maxey and died before 3 March 1866 when his wife remarried. Robert’s given name may or may not be a clue to Samuel’s Kentucky origins, as we will see.

Although there are other Scotts – Davis and William – in the 1830 census of Howard County, Samuel has no known ties to them.

Davis Scott was also from Kentucky, born c1795, and he died in 1886 in Monroe County, Missouri. He apparently didn’t stay long in Howard County.

William Scott was born c1776 in Virginia, but both he and his wife left wills and there is no mention of any ties to Samuel or his family. Based on the fact that William owned 11 slaves, he was a relatively wealthy man for his time.

Based on the 1830 census, Samuel Scott was born between 1790-1800.

While gathering data on the Thompson family in Washington County, Kentucky, I came across a court minute entry (Volume D:93):

9 March 1812 noted the apprenticeship of Samuel Scott, aged 15 on 1 January 1812, natural son of Alley Scott, deceased, to George Thompson to learn the art of draper.

It was signed by John Reed, clerk, and George Thompson.

I touched on this in a previous post, but it is time to delve further into Scott records in Washington County, Kentucky. Unfortunately, the 1800 census is lost, so there are no family formations in households to examine. However, there is a list of males appearing on tax lists or land record lists, compiled as a census substitute.

There are only four Scott men on that 1800 list: Absolem, George, James and Robert. Absolem is gone by 1810, having removed to Cumberland County, Kentucky.

In 1810, we find the following men: George, James, John, John again, Richard, Robert and Samuel Scott.

George is likely the George Thompson in the 1812 court minutes who accepted Samuel Scott, aged 15, as an apprentice. However, Samuel wasn’t living with George in 1810 because there is no male in his age range (10-15 years old).

Richard and one John Scott, who is young himself, don’t have a male in that age range, either, so while they might still be related to Samuel, he isn’t living with their families.

Likewise, Samuel Scott has no male living with his family who is 10-15 years old, but he himself is aged 26-44, married Jane Sutton on 6 June 1809 and has one female under 10 in the home. This Samuel could be an uncle or cousin of Samuel W. Scott.

Lastly, we have an older John Scott, over 45 plus a Robert Scott, 26-44, who have one male each aged 10-15 living with them.

I believe Samuel W. and the Thompsons had already left Kentucky for Missouri by 1820, but the following Scotts were enumerated in Washington County in that year: Benjamin, Benjamin again, Elia, James, James again, John, Richard and Robert Scott.

The title of this post references having to jump in somewhere to get a start. This is my jumping in point. None of these Scotts has a female who is old enough to be Alley Scott, named as Samuel’s mother in the 1812 minutes, except for females that appear to be their wives. The court record says she was dead, but it doesn’t say when.  As no likely candidate has been found living in any Scott household, I am going to assume for the moment that Alley might have died giving birth to Samuel and that he has no siblings.

It is certainly possible that Samuel Scott was living with a female relative – a married aunt – and not with a male Scott family member.

However, I am going to investigate John and Robert Scott to see what can be found out about their lives. Robert, in particular, interests me because Samuel’s presumed son in Missouri is Robert J. Scott. It would make sense that he might name his son for a (presumed) uncle who took him in and cared for him, at least for some period of his life.

Beginning with Robert, he was 26-44 years old in 1810, so born 1766-1784. He married Nancy Clifton on 7 August 1795 in Washington County, Kentucky. There were two females aged 10-15 in addition to the one male aged 10-15 in the 1810 household.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a single probate or will for any Scott in Washington County between 1793 and 1831. That leaves court minutes, land records and tax lists. Thankfully, Washington County has many extant records for its early history.

Let’s see what we find in them, beginning with tomorrow’s post.