Heart of a Southern Woman

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Jamestowne Colony Ancestors–20 Grandparents ! — 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, #52

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Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, we lived only a couple of hours from Jamestown! We went there often in my childhood, to Yorktown and Williamsburg as well. My mother was very interested in history, and wanted to be sure her children understood their Virginia history! She was also very interested in family history, but as far as I know, she had no idea that she had grandparents who had lived in Jamestown! Oh my gracious, she would have been so excited to know all this I’m sure! I am excited as well! As my genealogical research progressed, I began to realize we had some lines of ancestors that extended back to that time frame. However, I had not investigated particularly if we had ancestors who were on the “approved” lists from the Jamestown Society indicating that you did indeed have ancestors from Jamestown. As I approached the end of this 52 ancestors in 52 weeks challenge, I decided to write about some of our first ancestors–the Huguenots, Pilgrims on the Mayflower, and Jamestown Settlers. I gathered all the lists I could find, and started searching! Some were easy as I readily recognized the names!  Several were amazing to me, because I had perhaps stopped at a daughter or son, never dreaming that including one more generation would take me to Jamestown! Wow! Altogether, as of this writing, I have identified twenty grandparents who were present in Jamestown, and therefore would make my siblings and I , and many of my cousins eligible for membership in the Jamestowne Society. That is simply amazing to me!

I am going to list all twenty of our grandparents here, and highlight the ones I’ve already blogged about–so that you can simply click on them and see their story. At the end of this post, just for information’s sake, I will list their relationship trees. Therefore cousins can tell who comes through the Houchins, the Langhornes, the Omohundros, etc. and see their own relationships.

The very first discovery I made that I’d not known of before, just blew me away! I was looking at the lines, and noticed a Mirian Newport married to a William Hatcher. It was the Newport name that caught my attention. I knew I had seen that name on the lists.  I thought I’d extend her line a bit, and who turned out to be her father? Oh my gracious, none other than Captain Christopher Newport, Captain of the Susan Constant and in charge of all three ships that sailed to Jamestown! I had no idea, and was so excited! He is our/my ninth great- grandfather! His daughter Marian is my eighth great-grandmother and is a qualifying ancestor in her own right! Her husband William Hatcher, my eight great-grandfather is identified as well!  William Hatcher served for many years in the House of Burgesses. 

The following story, originally shared to his family tree on ancestry, by Theodore Walker27, by an unknown author, can be found on ancestry, and is very interesting about the Susan Constant and Captain Newport:

Newport, Capt. Christopher, captainchristophernewport.com340 × 180Search by image

Jamestowne ships

Jamestown Ships, The Susan Constant, the Godspeed, and the Discovery. source: Private Jamestown VA Tours Virginia http://www.williamsburgprivatetours.com197 × 193Search by image

“The Susan Constant, captained by Christopher Newport, was the largest of three ships of the English Virginia Company (the others being the Discovery and the Godspeed) on the 1606-1607 voyage that resulted in the founding of Jamestown in the new Colony of Virginia. Susan Constant was rated at 120 tons. Her keel length is estimated at 55.2 feet (16.8 meters). Her overall length from tip to stern is estimated at 116 feet. On the 1606-1607 voyage, she carried 105 colonists, all male.  She returned to England in May 1607. She served as a merchant ship through at least 1615. Her fate is not known. The alternative name Sarah Constant has been cited, and is shown as being the name noted on the earliest document, leading to a belief that Samuel Purchas had the name wrong in his Pilgrims book.  There is growing support for the name Sarah Constant. The article that cites the Sarah Constant is as follows:  He tolde me of three barques on route to the New Worlde, thouse whose names are, as he tolde me thereon, be consysted of “Godspeed”, “Discoverie” or “Discovery”, and one whose name splyte twice, I think ´was “Sarah Constant”.- presumably written by Sir Walter Raleigh. December 20, 1606, 150 passengers left Blackwall, London, England in three London (Virginia) Company ships, Susan Constant with Master Christopher Newport and 71 passengers, Godspeed with Capt. Bartholomew Gosnold and 52 passengers and the Discovery under Capt. John Ratcliffe, carrying 21 persons. They headed for the New World.  After 18 weeks, the ships landed in Cape Henry, Virginia. 105 survivors established the town of Jamestown. April 30, 1607: The ships arrive at Cape Comfort, a vanguard boat stopped at Kecoughtan where the natives welcomed the English Settlers”

If you like interactive websites, and if you’d like to know more about the women in Jamestown, there is a wonderful website titled the National Women’s History Museum.  There we learn that the  Englishmen named the river that flows into the Chesapeake Bay the James River and named their settlement Jamestown, both to honor their King, James I. The settlers of Virginia were looking for gold especially, but none was to be found!

In this same website we finally learn about the women in Jamestown!  ” For over a year after the founding of Jamestown, no English women lived in the colony. Then in October of 1608, two women arrived with the “Second Supply” of men and provisions. Thomas Forrest, listed as a gentleman in the supply lists, brought his wife, Anne Forrest, and her maid, Anne Buras. Buras was about fourteen years old when she arrived. She married the carpenter John Layton within a year, an event that Captain John Smith described as the first wedding held in Virginia. Anne Layton later gave birth to a daughter, named Virginia. While the Laytons are not mentioned again in later records, their arrival represents the beginning of families in Jamestown.

In August of 1609, about twenty women arrived on ships sent by the Virginia Company of London. One hundred more women arrived a few months later. Many of the female passengers on the first ships were traveling with their husbands and families. All were recruited by the Virginia Company, a land-development, stock-issuing corporation based in London.  For the most part these women’s names are lost, but a few survive in the record.”

Lo and behold,  listed on this website, is Jane/Joan Pierce, my grandmother!  Until this very moment I didn’t know she and her daughter existed, only men are usually discussed! “Joan Pierce sailed with her husband William and daughter Jane. By all accounts, Joan was a dauntless woman and enjoyed the challenges of living in Virginia. During a visit to England in 1629, she was described as “an honest and industrious woman [who] hath been [in Virginia] nearly 20 years.” She apparently considered the new colony rich in resources; she was quoted as saying that “she can keep a better house in Virginia . . . than in London.” Many women were in the same situation: while their men took off for the New World, women supported their families and managed the finances. Before leaving England to join their husbands, these women made the decisions about selling property and planning for the long voyage.” 

“Her daughter, Jane Pierce, married John Rolfe, the widower of Pocahontas. Pocahontas had been the favored daughter of Chief Powhatan, and her marriage to Rolfe in 1614 brought over eight years of peace between the settlers and Native Americans, during which the colony was able to produce profitable tobacco. Pocahontas died in England in 1617, and Rolfe returned to Jamestown. He became active in colonial politics and married Jane Pierce later that year. They had one daughter, Elizabeth, also named for the powerful Virgin Queen.”National Women’s History Museum.   Jane Pierce was my 10th great Aunt, with her sister Edith being my 10th great-grandmother!  Edith Pierce married Jerimiah Clements, my 10th great-grandfather. It is so amazing to me, that I happen to share the Pierces and the Clements with other genealogical researchers–making us cousins now as well as friends! 

Our ancestors:

  1. Nicholas Martiau, see his blog, post–only his granddaughters Mary and  Jane Scarsbrook, 1654-1685 are my direct descendant, not Nicholas or his wife. 
  2. Mary Scarsbrook
  3. Christopher Newport
  4. Daughter Marian Newport
  5. William Hatcher, Marian’s husband
  6. Jerimiah Clement
  7. Edith Pierce, wife of Jerimiah, daughter of Capt. Wm.Pierce, my 10th
  8. William Pierce
  9. William Pierce, son of above
  10. Jane or Joan Phippen Pierce, wife of the Capt. above
  11. John Pinkard
  12. John Browning
  13. Robert Beverly
  14. Peter Beverly
  15. Francis Fairfax
  16. Myles Cary
  17. Henry Cary
  18. John Carter, 1613
  19. John Langhorne
  20. wife Rebecca Carter

From Jamestown Rediscovery we learn that the “Recent discovery of the exact location of the first settlement and its fort indicates that the actual settlement site was in a more secure place, away from the channel, where Spanish ships could not fire point-blank into the fort. Almost immediately after landing, the colonists were under attack from what amounted to the on-again off-again enemy, the Algonquian natives. As a result, in a little over a month’s time, the newcomers managed to “beare and plant palisades” enough to build a wooden fort. Three contemporary accounts and as ketch of the fort agree that its wooden palisaded walls formed a triangle around a storehouse, church, and a number of houses. It is amazing to realize that my own 9th great-grandfather Nicholas Martiau, a Huguenot, French Engineer, helped design and build the  improved palisades around the Jamestown Fort in 1620, allowing for the survival of some of the settlers  during the 1622 Indian Massacre. 

While disease, famine, and continuing attacks of neighboring Algonquins took a tremendous toll on the population, there were times when the Powhatan Indian trade revived the colony with food in exchange for glass beads, copper, and iron implements. It appears that eventual structured leadership of Captain John Smith kept the colony from dissolving. The “Starving Time” winter followed Smith’s departure in 1609 during which only 60 of the original 214 settlers at Jamestown survived. That June, the survivors decided to bury cannon and armor and abandon the town. It was only the arrival of the new governor, Lord De La Ware, and his supply ships that brought the colonists back to the fort and the colony back on its feet. Although the suffering did not totally end at Jamestown for decades, some years of peace and prosperity followed the wedding of Pocahontas, the favored daughter of the Algonquian chief Powhatan, to tobacco entrepreneur John Rolfe.

The first representative assembly in the New World convened in the Jamestown church on July 30, 1619. The General Assembly met in response to orders from the Virginia Company “to establish one equal and uniform government over all Virginia” which would provide “just laws for the happy guiding and governing of the people there inhabiting.” The other crucial event that would play a role in the development of America was the arrival of Africans to Jamestown. A Dutch slave trader exchanged his cargo of Africans for food in 1619. The Africans became indentured servants, similar in legal position to many poor Englishmen who traded several years of labor in exchange for passage to America. The popular conception of a race-based slave system did not fully develop until the 1680s.”

The Algonquian eventually became disenchanted and, in 1622, attacked the out plantations killing over 300 of the settlers. Even though a last-minute warning spared Jamestown, the attack on the colony and mismanagement of the Virginia Company at home convinced the King that he should revoke the Virginia Company Charter; Virginia became a crown colony in 1624.

The fort seems to have existed into the middle of the 1620s, but as Jamestown grew into a “New Town” to the east, written reference to the original fort disappear. Jamestown remained the capital of Virginia until its major statehouse, located on the western end of Preservation Virginia property, burned in 1698. The capital was moved to Williamsburg that year and Jamestown began to slowly disappear above ground. By the 1750s the land was owned and heavily cultivated, primarily by the Travis and Ambler families.

You can read or listen to the history of Jamestown in so many places, I have not tried to tell you even half of the history here. I have included a video which is very instructive in the history. I am going to list some of the websites I utilized as well, especially the ones with the lists of settlers, much more than the beginning ones listed here: From the website Historic Jamestown, , Understanding America’s Birthplace, we find this list of the very first settlers and their occupations!

 

 Original Settlers–Spring, 1607

Name Occupation
  • Master Edward Maria Wingfield
  • Captaine Bartholomew Gosnoll
  • Captaine John Smyth
  • Captaine John Ratliffe
  • Captaine John Martin
  • Captaine George Kendall
Councell
  • Master Robert Hunt
Preacher
  • Master George Percie
  • Anthony Gosnoll
  • Captaine Gabriell Archer
  • Robert Ford
  • William Bruster
  • Dru Pickhouse
  • John Brookes
  • Thomas Sands
  • John Robinson
  • Ustis Clovill
  • Kellam Throgmorton
  • Nathaniell Powell
  • Robert Behethland
  • Jeremy Alicock
  • Thomas Studley
  • Richard Crofts
  • Nicholas Houlgrave
  • Thomas Webbe
  • John Waler
  • William Tanker
  • Francis Snarsbrough
  • Edward Brookes
  • Richard Dixon
  • John Martin
  • George Martin
  • Anthony Gosnold
  • Thomas Wotton, Surgeon
  • Thomas Gore
  • Francis Midwinter
Gentlemen
  • William Laxon/Laxton
  • Edward Pising
  • Thomas Emry
  • Robert Small
  • Anas Todkill
  • John Capper
Carpenters

First Supply, January 1608

Name Occupation
  • Matthew Scrivner
appointed to be of the Councell
  • Michaell Phetyplace
  • William Phetyplace
  • Ralfe Morton
  • William Cantrill
  • Richard Wyffin
  • Robert Barnes
  • George Hill
  • George Pretty
  • John Taverner
  • Robert Cutler
  • Michaell Sickelmore
  • Thomas Coo
  • Peter Pory
  • Richard Killingbeck
  • William Causey
  • Doctor Russell
  • Richard Worley
  • Richard Prodger
  • William Bayley
  • Richard Molynex
  • Richard Pots
  • Jefrey Abots
  • John Harper
  • Timothy Leds
  • Edward Gurganay
  • George Forest
  • John Nickoles
  • William Gryvill
Gentlemen
  • Daniell Stalling
Jeweller
  • William Dawson
  • Abraham Ransacke
Refiners
  • William Johnson
  • Richard Belfield
Refiners
  • Peter Keffer
A Gunner
  • Robert Alberton
A Perfumer
  • Raymond Goodyson
  • John Speareman
  • William Spence
  • Richard Brislow
  • William Simons
  • John Bouth
  • William Burket
  • Nicholas Ven
  • William Perce
  • Francis Perkins
  • Francis Perkins
  • William Bentley
  • Richard Gradon
  • Rowland Nelstrop
  • Richard Salvage
  • Thomas Salvage
  • Richard Miler
  • William May
  • Vere
  • Michaell
  • Bishop Wyles
Labourers
  • John Powell
  • Thomas Hope
  • William Beckwith
  • William Yonge
  • Laurence Towtales
  • William Ward
Tailers
  • Christopher Rodes
  • James Watkings
  • Richard Fetherstone
  • James Burne
  • Thomas Feld
  • John Harford
Apothecaries
  • Post Gittnat
A Surgeon
  • John Lewes
A Couper
  • Robert Cotton
A Tobacco-pipe-maker
  • Richard Dole
A Blackesmith
  • With divers others

                                                                  Second Supply, Fall 1608

Name Occupation
  • Captaine Peter Winne
  • Captaine Richard Waldo
Were appointed to bee of the Councell
  • Master Francis West
  • Thomas Graves
  • Rawley Chroshaw
  • Gabriell Bedle
  • John Russell
  • John Bedle
  • William Russell
  • John Gudderington
  • William Sambage
  • Henry Collings
  • Henry Ley
  • Harmon Haryson
  • Daniell Tucker
  • Hugh Wollystone
  • John Hoult
  • Thomas Norton
  • George Yarington
  • George Burton
  • Henry Philpot
  • Thomas Maxes
  • Michaell Lowicke
  • Master Hunt
  • Thomas Forest
  • William Dowman
  • John Dauxe
  • Thomas Abbey
Gentlemen
  • Thomas Phelps
  • John Prat
  • John Clarke
  • Jefry Shortridge
  • Dionis Oconor
  • Hugh Wynne
  • David ap Hugh
  • Thomas Bradley
  • John Burras
  • Thomas Lavander
  • Henry Bell
  • Master Powell
  • David Ellys
  • Thomas Gipson
Tradesmen
  • Thomas Dowse
  • Thomas Mallard
  • William Taler
  • Thomas Fox
  • Nicholas Hancock
  • Walker
  • Williams
  • Morrell
  • Rose
  • Scot
  • Hardwin
Laborers
  • Milman
  • Hellyard
Boyes
  • Mistresse Forrest, and Anne Burras her maide
  • eight Dutch men and Poles, with some others

Relationship Charts for Ancestors in Jamestown,

Capt. Christopher Newport (1563 –  1617) is your 9th great grandfather

 Marian Newporte (1615 – 1646)

daughter of Capt. Christopher Newport

Susannah Hatcher (1646 – 1699)

daughter of Marian Newporte

 Anne Burton (1670 – 1736)

daughter of Susannah Hatcher

 George Stovall (1705 – 1786)

son of Anne Burton

 Rachel Stovall (1760 – 1850)

daughter of George Stovall

 Mary Dillon Polly Turner (1796 – 1879)

daughter of Rachel Stovall

 Elizabeth Rachael Omohundro (1825 – 1915) daughter of Mary Dillon Turner

 Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daugh of Elizabeth Rachael Omohundro

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943) daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

Daugh. of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

 Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse

 ____________________________________________

William Hatcher (1613 – 1680)

is your 8th great grandfather

Susannah Hatcher (1646 – 1699)

daughter of William Hatcher

Anne Burton (1670 – 1736)

daughter of Susannah Hatcher

George Stovall (1705 – 1786)

son of Anne Burton

Rachel Stovall (1760 – 1850)

daughter of George Stovall

Mary Dillon Polly Turner (1796 – 1879)

daughter of Rachel Stovall

Elizabeth Rachael Omohundro (1825 – 1915)

daughter of Mary Dillon Polly Turner

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of Elizabeth Rachael Omohundro

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse 

 _________________________________________________

Nicholas Martiau (1591 – 1657)                        

is your 9th great grandfather

Mary Jane Martiau (1631 – 1678)

daughter of Nicholas Martiau

John Scarsbrook (1676 – 1704)

son of Mary Jane Martiau

Col. Henry Scarsbrook (1700 – 1773)

son of John Scarsbrook

Elizabeth Cary Scarsbrook (1721 – 1802)

daughter of Col. Henry Scarsbrook

Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne (1760 – 1797)

son of Elizabeth Cary Scarsbrook

Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne (1790 – 1854)

son of Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)

son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse 

————————————————-

 John Pinkard (1647 – 1690)

is your 7th great grandfather

Elizabeth Sarah (widow Eustice) Pinkard (1667 – 1719)

daughter of John Pinkard

Col. James Steptoe Sr., M.D. (1710 – 1778)

son of Elizabeth Sarah (widow Eustice) Pinkard

James Steptoe Jr. (1750 – 1826)

son of Col. James Steptoe Sr., M.D.

Frances Callaway (blind) Steptoe (1798 – 1832)

daughter of James Steptoe Jr.

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)

son of Frances Callaway (blind) Steptoe

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse 

 ___________________________________________________

Jerimiah Clements (1607 – 1657)

is your 10th great grandfather

Capt. John Clements (1631 – 1710)

son of Jerimiah Clements

John Clements (1669 – 1704)

son of Capt. John Clements

Stephen Clements (1692 – 1746)

son of John Clements

Joyce Clements (1739 – 1821)

daughter of Stephen Clements

Edward Houchins (1760 – 1846)

son of Joyce Clements

BENNETT HOUCHINS (1780 – 1815)

son of Edward Houchins

William Houchins (1807 – 1860)

son of BENNETT HOUCHINS

Nancy J Houchins (1833 – )

daughter of William Houchins

Walter Houchins (1854 – 1937)

son of Nancy J Houchins

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Walter Houchins

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse 

 _____________________________________________________

Capt. William Pierce (1560 – 1622)

is your 11th great grandfather

Edith Pierce (1607 – 1644)

daughter of Capt. William Pierce

Capt. John Clements (1631 – 1710)

son of Edith Pierce

John Clements (1669 – 1704)

son of Capt. John Clements

Stephen Clements (1692 – 1746)

son of John Clements

Joyce Clements (1739 – 1821)

daughter of Stephen Clements

Edward Houchins (1760 – 1846)

son of Joyce Clements

BENNETT HOUCHINS (1780 – 1815)

son of Edward Houchins

William Houchins (1807 – 1860)

son of BENNETT HOUCHINS

Nancy J Houchins (1833 – )

daughter of William Houchins

Walter Houchins (1854 – 1937)

son of Nancy J Houchins

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Walter Houchins

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse – 

___________________________________________________

Capt. John Browning (1588 – 1646)

is your 10th great grandfather

Thomas Browning (1620 – 1679)

son of Capt. John Browning

John BROWNING (1640 – 1690)

son of Thomas Browning

Thomas Browning (1660 – 1725)

son of John BROWNING

Mary Browning (1685 – 1739)

daughter of Thomas Browning

Richard Omohundro III (1709 – 1754)

son of Mary Browning

Richard Omohundro IV (1740 – 1811)

son of Richard Omohundro III

Ellis Putney Omohundro (1790 – 1852)

son of Richard Omohundro IV

Elizabeth Rachael Omohundro (1825 – 1915)

daughter of Ellis Putney Omohundro

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of Elizabeth Rachael Omohundro

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse

______________________________________________

Frances Fairfax (1580 – )

is your 9th great grandmother

Peter Beverley (1610 – 1650)

son of Frances Fairfax

Maj. Robert Beverley Sr. (1641 – 1687)

son of Peter Beverley

Mary Beverley (1678 – )

daughter of Maj. Robert Beverley Sr.

Maurice Langhorne (1719 – 1791)

son of Mary Beverley

Elizabeth Langhorne (1758 – 1818)

daughter of Maurice Langhorne

Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne (1790 – 1854)

son of Elizabeth Langhorne

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)

son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse 

___________________________________________________

Robert Beverley (1577 – 1613)

is your 9th great grandfather

Peter Beverley (1610 – 1650)

son of Robert Beverley

Maj. Robert Beverley Sr. (1641 – 1687)

son of Peter Beverley

Mary Beverley (1678 – )

daughter of Maj. Robert Beverley Sr.

Maurice Langhorne (1719 – 1791)

son of Mary Beverley

Elizabeth Langhorne (1758 – 1818)

daughter of Maurice Langhorne

Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne (1790 – 1854)

son of Elizabeth Langhorne

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)

son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse

_____________________________________________

Col. John Carter (1613 – 1669)

is your 8th great grandfather

Mary Margaret Carter (1637 – 1678)

daughter of Col. John Carter

Mary Beverley (1678 – )

daughter of Mary Margaret Carter

Maurice Langhorne (1719 – 1791)

son of Mary Beverley

Elizabeth Langhorne (1758 – 1818)

daughter of Maurice Langhorne

Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne (1790 – 1854)

son of Elizabeth Langhorne

jnJames Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)

son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

__________________________________________

Miles Cary (1622 – 1667)

is your 9th great grandfather

Henry Cary (1650 – 1720)

son of Miles Cary

Elizabeth Cary (1678 – 1691)

daughter of Henry Cary

Col. Henry Scarsbrook (1700 – 1773)

son of Elizabeth Cary

Elizabeth Cary Scarsbrook (1721 – 1802)

daughter of Col. Henry Scarsbrook

Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne (1760 – 1797)

son of Elizabeth Cary Scarsbrook

Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne (1790 – 1854)

son of Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)

son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne

Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)

daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse

_____________________________________________

This is IT! I did it! I completed writing about 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks! Actually, more than that as many posts dealt with multiple ancestors like this one! What a difference a year makes! Fifteen years ago, I was told I would only live five years or so, now this year, my fifteenth year of survival with severe heart disease, I have accomplished this challenge, and I have written a novel! Amazing!Thanks to Amy Johnson Crow for issuing and maintaining the challenge, and thanks to all the other authors who’ve shared their techniques and their family stories! I could not have done all of this without the support of my family and friends who have encouraged me every step of the way! Thank you so very much! It has been a wonderful experience! 

  

Fireworks!

 

 Sugggested reading and reference:

–Jamestowne Society, Richmond, Virginia, http://www.jamestowne.org/  (includes list of approved ancestors)

–National Park Service, Historic Jamestowne,    http://www.nps.gov/jame/historyculture/index.htm

–National Women’s History Museum, https://www.nwhm.org/online-exhibits/jamestownwomen/index.htm

–Historic Jamestown, http://www.historicjamestowne.org/history/

–Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Victory Center,  http://www.historyisfun.org/jamestown-settlement/jamestown-ships/?

–Jamestowne Rediscovery, http://apva.org/rediscovery/page.php?page_id=6

–History of Jamestown, Virginia (1607–99), Wikipedia Encyclopedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Jamestown,_Virginia_(1607%E2%80%9399)

 –Washington and Northern Virginia Company Jamestowne Society ,  http://www.jamestowne-wash-nova.org/index.htm

  –Our Ancestors in Jamestown Virginia, http://www.genealogical-gleanings.com/Jamestown.htm

 –Author: Virginia Lee Hutchenson Davis. Commemoration of the 400th Aniversity of the Landing at James Towne, 1607-2007

 Jamestown Book

 

 

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Harry Langhorne Houchins, Blind, Extraordinary Banjo Player! 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #42

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Harry Langhorne Houchins was born May 11, 1887 according to his death certificate. However, according to his U.S. World War I Draft Registration Card, he was born January 20 , 1887.  It always amazes me how the official documents in our lives can disagree! We know that he died  26 Feb. 1973 because several people I know attended the funeral. 

Harry  was my maternal Great Uncle and  I remember him well. From the time I was five, I remember his coming to visit every so often. He would sit on the front porch, play his banjo and sing, and I would sit at his feet and say “again, again, again!” I adored him! Uncle Harry was blind. For a long time, he was the only blind person I knew. He used a cane and got along very well! I now know that Harry came down from the mountains of Virginia, to Richmond where we lived, to join his cousin John Watts Spangler, called “Babe” on his regular radio show on radio station WRVA . Harry wasn’t one of the regular band members who played on the show, but he was a regular substitute, a tribute to his talent. The regulars included John Watts Spangler known as Babe, and the Old Virginia Fiddler, Dudley Spangler, also called Babe, Charles Langhorne Spangler called “Tump” and Dave Pearson.   J.W. Babe and Tump were brothers, Dudley and Harry were their first cousins! Music ran in the blood of this family! Dudley married Tump and J.W.’s sister, read their blog posts on the links above along with  the others. They were characters and yet quite accomplished–all of them.  

Harry never looked like the young man on the cover of this album when I knew him, He looked more like the man playing the banjo on the video with Jason Harris. He had white hair, a white beard, and was about that same size. Yes, he often wore a cap like that too! That could be my great Uncle Harry, but it is not. Watching this man play the banjo makes my heart ache for my Uncle Harry, who has been  gone for over 40 years now. He was quite a presence.

Harry was the son of  Walter Thomas Houchins and Evelyn Langhorne, both of whom I have written about in the past. His sister was my grandmother Kate, Katherine Steptoe Houchins Kerse. His mother died in childbirth when Harry was just 13, he’d be blind by 16–what a life. Two of the most significant people in his life, maybe more, were blind from a disease that is still evident in some of our family, retinosis pigmentosa. It causes people to go blind often at a very young age. Harry’s mother was going blind when she died at age 34, her father James Steptoe Langhorne, and her sister Fannie Langhorne Spangler (mother of Babe and Tump) were blind also!  James Steptoe  Langhorne, like Harry, went blind in his teens. 

Right after their mother’s death, the six living Houchins children were scattered out among different family members or friends. Evelyn died in 1900, her father in 1905. The kids’ father abandoned them, moving out-of-state, remarrying, and having another child by  1902, and a second by 1905. On the 1910 census, Harry can be seen living with his neighbor and lifelong friend, Joseph Hall.  By 1920 he is living in Rockingham, North Carolina with his father, his stepmother who is his same exact age, Dad is 65, Stepmom Lena is 32, Harry is 32, Lena’s daughters are Pearl–17 and Lucille–15 years old.  By the 1930 census he is still with his then 75-year-old Dad,and  his 42-year-old stepmom. Pearl has left the home, but Lucille apparently got married at 15, like her Mom and her husband and 9-year-old daughter are living with them. By the 1940 census, the children have left the home, and Dad Houchins died in 1937. Harry and his stepmother Lena Elliott Houchins are both 53. I wasn’t yet born, and they had lived a lifetime! So, when I was six years old in 1955, Uncle Harry was 68 years old. He lived until he was 86 years old! I remember visiting him several times, and once meeting Lena. My mother told us Lena was his housekeeper! She never mentioned that she was his stepmother. I never knew she had children with my grandfather Walter Thomas Houchins until I did the genealogical research! More family secrets. But I suspect the real secret is that they never actually got married. I have never been able to find a marriage certificate for Walter Thomas and Lena Elliott. But they lived together 37 years, so they certainly had a common law marriage! 

 While playing the banjo was Harry’s fondest past time, he also was trained by the Commission of the Blind to weave rugs, and to read braille. He enjoyed both of those things. He listened to a lot of books on tape later in life. Our home, and those of our Aunts, Uncles, and cousins were filled with scatter rugs, very colorful, woven by Uncle Harry! In her book, Both of Me, by Harry’s niece Mary Stuart  (Mary Stuart Houchins,actress and  daughter of Harry’s brother Guy), wrote that when she was ten or eleven, in the late 30’s, Uncle Harry came to see her family in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and lived with them for a year! She says he jumped aboard a moving freight car with his banjo and a farm boy friend of his and traveled from Virginia to Oklahoma! Can you imagine, being blind, yet brave and or stupid enough to jump aboard a moving freight car! We certainly know he was a risk taker!  I remember my Great Uncle Harry fondly, and I can’t hear a banjo today without thinking of him! Sweet memories, joined by research, make the best stories. 

 

 

Harry Langhorne (blind) Houchins (1887 – 1973)
is your grand-uncle
father of Harry Langhorne (blind) Houchins
daughter of Walter Thomas Houchins
daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse –

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Langhorne Reunion, Meadows of Dan, Virginia, 2014 -a Celebration of Family!

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Descendants of Early Settlers of the Meadows of Dan, Virginia,  Reunion

 

The first weekend in August, 2014, descendants of James Steptoe Langhorne (pronounced Lang’n) and his wife Elizabeth Rachel Omohundro Langhorne gathered for their very first reunion. They came to Meadows of Dan to see the old home place, the Langhorne Mill, Langhorne School, and church founded by their 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and yes even 4th great grandparents!  While some of the  50 reunioners actually live here in Patrick County and showed the others around, the large majority of the family attending were from all over the United States including California, Oklahoma, Florida, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, and of course other areas of Virginia! They filled the Woodberry Inn, visited local sites like Mabry’s Mill, Floyd’s Country Store, and the Chateau Morrisette Winery, aa well as toured the Cockram Mills Complex with Gary and Ron Cockram along with having brunch at the lovely Crooked Road Café. They shopped their cousins’ and other’s businesses like the Greenberry House, Poor Farmer’s Market, and the candy factory. Above it all, they took in the scenery of beautiful Patrick County and the Blue Ridge Mountains!

Saturday morning, the group took a tour of areas of special interest to the descendants. Thanks to permission from local land owners, and the leadership of family members Harvie and Pat Spangler, brothers, and cousin Beverly Belcher Woody who wrote up a tour guide for the family, family members got to see where the Langhornes had settled back in the 1840’s, taking over the massive 13,000 acre plantation named Langdale– inherited through their own father and grandfathers, originally part of a land grant. Grandpa Steptoe as he was called in the family, first saw the area when he was a teenager and reported it as one of the most beautiful places on earth. Because the area had some of the few flat plateaus in the geographic area on the Dan River, with beautiful meadows, James Steptoe Langhorne named the area the Meadows of Dan, according to many published articles.

 

Steptoe went completely blind, and never actually saw his beloved home site again. Nevertheless, he married, settled here, and owned slaves who worked the agricultural part of his plantation. He established a grist mill, a school, and he and his wife and his brother William Langhorne who never married, gave land and built a log church where the current Meadows of Dan Baptist Church is located. Steptoe, his wife, his brother William, and at least three of his nine children and a couple of his grandchildren are buried at that church. Some members of the family attended services at the church Sunday morning while here for the reunion.

The family was so excited, so happy to walk where their grandparents had walked, worshiped, and worked almost 175 years ago! When we ate our last meal together at The Crooked Road Café that Sunday, we were acutely aware that we were sitting on the Dan River where our grandparents’ plantation was located so long ago! We were having coffee where they might have had coffee themselves, how amazing!

The Langhorne family is known for our most famous ancestors, and first cousins to the Patrick County Langhornes:  Lady Astor, Nancy Langhorne from Danville originally, who became the first American woman to sit in England’s Parliament!  At one time, she was the wealthiest woman in the world; and her sisters became the famous Gibson Girls.

Steptoe lost most of his money after the Civil War, as did most Southerners. However, his children and grandchildren went on to do incredible things. Steptoe Langhorne’s nine children included:

1.Henry Ellis Langhorne, 1849-1865, who drowned in the mill pond at age 16.

2.Charles Putney Langhorne, a twin b. 1852 who died at birth but whose sister

  1. Viriginia Alice, twin of Charles, grew to marry Charles M. Cassell of Virginia Tech fame.
  2. Frances, Fannie married Wallace Wolford Spangler and had six children who became quite famous in their own right. There have been many interviews written of her son, the famous State Legislator Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler, and the musicians including son John Watts “Babe” who became the famous “Old Virginia Fiddler” on the radio in Richmond, Virginia. Her daughter Mary Josephine married a cousin Dudley “Babe” Spangler who was also a renowned fiddler and recording artist of the area. At the reunion, we were pleased to have Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler’s sons Harvie and Pat Spangler with us, as well as his granddaughter Betty Smith, daughter of Tump’s son Thomas, who told us some family stories. Dudley and Mary Josephine’s three children, William Wallace Spangler, Bernice Spangler Irvin, and Margie Spangler Cartwright were with us as well. We also had grandchildren of Lila Ann Spangler present. The Spanglers played music, directed our tours, recited original poetry of their own and their Mom’s, and enriched our experience beyond compare!
  3. Sarah Elizabeth Langhorne died at age eleven, 1857-1868.
  4. Mary Omohundro Langhorne, 1860-1952 married William Caldwell Shelor first, and Charles Davis DeHart second. She had nine children like her parents.
  5. Nancy Armistead Langhorne, 1863-1917 married William Pinkney Howell and they had seven children.
  6. Evaline, Evalyna, or Evelyn Langhorne married Walter Thomas Houchins and had seven children. She is this author’s great-great- grandmother and the reason this particular reunion was organized. Having started researching my family tree, I studied the Langhorne family whom I had heard of my whole life, but few of whom I had ever met. My mother knew them well it seemed, but our family never took the chance to visit the Meadows of Dan. My father was in WWII, his parents lived with us, there were four children, life was busy! Suddenly, I am in my sixties and through my research I meet the Spanglers! Last year I attended their biannual reunion, and went home buzzing with the desire to introduce the rest of my mother’s family (she was one of seven herself) to the Spanglers. Not being well myself, I decided to organize a reunion of the groups I knew, the descendants of the sisters: Fannie Langhorne Spangler and Evelyn Langhorne Houchins! The rest is now history, but we hope to expand to include descendants of all nine Langhorne children in the future.
  7. Ernest Lindsey “Jack” Langhorne, 1879-1953, was actually Steptoe’s grandson, but was adopted by him for various reasons. He married Mary Susan Blackard and they had fourteen children! One of his great- grandsons, James Callaway Langhorne has distinguished the family by writing a book that was published this year titled The Virginia Langhornes. It is a book full of history, pictures, and genealogy! His research has proven along with some others, that the Langhornes were not from Wales afterall, but originated in England, with our first ancestors reaching Virginia in the mid 1600’s, John and Rebecca Carter Langhorne. He was planning to join us and speak with us at the reunion, but a bad bout of strep throat sadly prevented his attendance.

Because the famous Langhorne/Astors, and in Patrick County the Spanglers are the family so well known, I’d like to tell you a bit about  Evelyn Langhorne Houchins’ descendants. Her six living children were born and raised in Patrick County, Virginia. Unfortunately, upon the early death of their mother in 1900, they were scattered with relatives or in boarding schools across the state. Only three of the six had children.

One of her daughters, Julia Elizabeth Houchins Nichols became an attorney and the first assistant District Attorney in the state of Virginia. She had a grandson, great-granddaughter, and great-great-grandson at the reunion! Her grandsons are also talented musicians as well as the greats! In the family are gifted and courageous firefighters and emergency personnel who can save your life!

 

One son of Evelyn’s, Guy Maurice Houchins, had two children, both of whom moved to Oklahoma, with Guy Jr. becoming a Geophysical Engineer with an attorney daughter Sarah Stuhr who was present with us at the reunion! Guy’s other child, a daughter, became the famous actress, Mary Stuart Houchins (went by Mary Stuart) who played the character “Jo” or JoAnn Tate on the Soap Opera “Search for Tomorrow” which ran on CBS for 35 years!

 

Another daughter, my grandmother kate, Katherine Steptoe Houchins Kerse (pronounced Kearse) became a nurse and raised seven children in Richmond, Virginia with her police officer husband Thomas P. Kerse. All seven of those children are now deceased, but nine of her grandchildren from all over the country attended with greats and four great-great-grandchildren present at the reunion!  She would be so proud! They included  Roger Buck, PhD geophysicist college professor at Columbia (Pat Spangler, grandson of Fannie Langhorne is a PhD Geophysicist Professor Emeritus from the University of Florida, and remember the Geophysicist Engineer son of Guy Houchins, grandson of Evelyn Langhorne.) Three geophysicists in one family, that’s amazing to me!

There are lawyers, landscapers, computer specialists, other teachers and college professors, financial planners and several tax advisors. Contractors, musicians, realtors, and generally good people abound. I believe I counted at least six PhD’s among the Spanglers and the Houchins present from these branches of the Langhorne family!  I was a family therapist by profession-every family needs one! Actually, three of us in this branch of the family taught/now teach children with emotional/behavioral disorders. There were several other teachers, and two special education supervisors in these branches. Just in case you’re wondering, just like our country, we are split politically. That might lead to lively “discussions”, but the music in our souls unites us and reminds us of our love of family.

We are thankful to our homeland of Patrick County for hosting us, to the many proprietors who were especially hospitable to us like Shep and Angie Nance and Melissa Turman at the Woodberry Inn & Restaurant and many others.

If you are interested in more pictures and stories of this family, you can find them on Helen Holshouser’s blog at heart2heartstories.com.

 

 

 

 

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Buck, Spangler and Houchins, Three Cousins who are Geophysicists as Well! –52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, #31

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This past weekend at the Langhorne Family reunion, I heard wonderful family stories and renewed relationships with many family members I hadn’t seen in years! I am looking forward to sharing some of those stories with you. One of those is about three cousins, all of whom are geophysicists! Two of these cousins are alive and well and were at the reunion, one is deceased, but his daughter was present giving us a glimpse of him I suspect.


I think it is remarkable that we have three geophysicists in our one branch of the Langhorne Family! All three descend from their shared great or 2nd great grandparents– James Steptoe Langhorne and his wife Elizabeth Rachel Omohundro. There must have been some strong intellectual genes in that family!

 

A geophysicist is a scientist who studies “the branch of geology that deals with the physics of the earth and its atmosphere, including oceanography, seismology, volcanology, and geomagnetism.” (click for source)

 

In our family, Roger Buck, PhD teaches and leads research at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University. This is what Roger says on his profile page for the Institute where he works: “I believe theorists need to get out and see where the data come from. In recent years I have been fortunate to participate in such diverse field work as collecting rock samples for radiometric dating in Egypt and in the Mojave Desert, diving on the Reykjanes Mid-Ocean Ridge in a Russian submersible, and helping with GPS surveys on Iceland.”  Pat Spangler, PhD, is retired from the University of Florida, and thus his title is now Associate Professor Emeritus of Geology. Pat and Roger met for the first time at the Langhorne reunion this past weekend! They have both published extensively and have traveled the world teaching and researching! Their stories of Ethiopia, Australia, and the Pacific Ocean are amazing! Earthquakes! Earthquakes under the ocean!
At the reunion was another cousin from Oklahoma, an attorney in her own right, Sarah Houchins Stuhr. Her Dad, Guy Maurice Houchins Jr. is deceased now, but lo and behold, he is our third geophysicist! He served as a “Geophysical Engineer for Amoco Corporation all of his career. He retired as the Manager of Exploration Systems, responsible for exploration, computer application development, and seismic data processing.” –from a personal letter written by Guy M. Houchins, Jr. July 20, 2004, and provided by his daughter. The way they talk, it sounds like they all pretty much researched similar things, and I stand amazed at their abilities! Along with other family members, they speak well for our ancestors. As the children and grandchildren of sisters, their relationships look like this:

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)
is your 2nd great-grandfather
Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)
daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne
Katherine “Kitty” Elizabeth Langhorne Kerse (1916 – 2005)
daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
Walter Roger Buck IV, Ph.D.
You are the son of Katherine “Kitty” Elizabeth Langhorne Kerse

 

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)

is your great-grandfather

Frances (Fannie) Eunice (blind) Langhorne (1854 – 1936)
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler (1885 – 1983)
son of Frances (Fannie) Eunice (blind) Langhorne
Daniel Patrick Spangler PhD
You are the son of Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler –

 

 

James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)
is your great-grandfather
Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
Guy Maurice Houchins (1897 – 1954)
son of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne
Guy Maurice Houchins Jr.
You are the son of Guy Maurice Houchins

 

 

Daniel Patrick Spangler PhD (1934 – )
is your 2nd cousin 1x removed
Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler (1885 – 1983)
father of Daniel Patrick Spangler PhD
Frances (Fannie) Eunice (blind) Langhorne (1854 – 1936)
mother of Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler
James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)
father of Frances (Fannie) Eunice (blind) Langhorne
Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)
daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne
Katherine “Kitty” Elizabeth Langhorne Kerse (1916 – 2005)
daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
Walter Roger Buck IV, Ph.D.
You are the son of Katherine “Kitty” Elizabeth Langhorne Kerse

 

 

 

Walter Roger Buck IV, Ph.D. (1955 – )
is your 1st cousin 1x removed
Katherine “Kitty” Elizabeth Langhorne Kerse (1916 – 2005)
mother of Walter Roger “Bucky” Buck IV, Ph.D.
Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)
mother of Katherine “Kitty” Elizabeth Langhorne Kerse
Walter Thomas Houchins (1854 – 1937)
father of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
Guy Maurice Houchins (1897 – 1954)
son of Walter Thomas Houchins
Guy Maurice Houchins Jr.
You are the son of Guy Maurice Houchins

 

 

Daniel Patrick Spangler PhD (1934 – )
is your 2nd cousin
Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler (1885 – 1983)

father of Daniel Patrick Spangler PhD
Frances (Fannie) Eunice (blind) Langhorne (1854 – 1936)
mother of Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler
James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne (1822 – 1905)
father of Frances (Fannie) Eunice (blind) Langhorne
Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne (1866 – 1900)
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
Guy Maurice Houchins (1897 – 1954)
son of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne
Guy Maurice Houchins Jr.
You are the son of Guy Maurice Houchins

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Charles Langhorne Spangler, Congressman, Revenuer and Moonshine Still Hunter! –52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, #30

 

Spangler, Tump,Charles Langhorne

Offical state photograph taken of Mr. Spangler in the early 1930’s when he served in The Virginia General Assembly.from The Mountain Laurel as cited below.

Charles Langhorne Spangler, called “Tump” was one of six children born of Wallace Wolford Spangler and his second wife Frances (Fannie) Eunice Langhorne. Tump had a half-brother, Harry Hannibal Spangler born 1877 to Wallace Wolford Spangler and first wife Catharine (Katie) Ellen Spangler. Wallace and Fannie’s children were:

 John Watts, “Babe ” Spangler (1882-1970)

 Charles Langhorne “Tump ” Spangler (1885-1983)

 Mary Josephine Spangler (1887-1970)

 Lila Ann Spangler (1889-1973)

 Elizabeth Lucretia Spangler (1892-)

 Virginia Empress Spangler (1894-1933)

 

As a young man, Tump married first, Susan Bertha Shelor, 1885-1909 who unfortunately died in childbirth. Secondly, he married Kittie Clyde Cockram and they had seven amazing children!

 Samuel Maurice Spangler 1916 – 1997

 Leila Evelyn Spangler 1918 – 2002

 Thomas W Spangler 1920 – 1991

 Benjamin Leslie Spangler1923 – 1996

 Harvie Langhorne Spangler 1928 – living

 Charles Bishop Spangler 1932 – 2011

 Daniel Patrick Spangler PhD 1934 – living

Spangler brothers Pat in red cap and Harvie  enjoy a private moment

Pat, left, and Harvie Spangler , brothers.

Two sons, Harvie and Pat (Daniel Patrick) are outstanding men in their own right, as were their siblings, and I will write more about them at a later date.  When you meet the grandchildren, of whom there are many, you can have no doubt about the upstanding character of their parents and Charles and how he passed on those strong character traits.

Among other things, Tump served as a Deputy Collector for the U.S. Internal Revenue (he was a revenuer!) In that capacity he spent many lonely days searching out and destroying moon-shine stills in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, in and around Patrick County. Charles is quoted in a family heirloom as writing, “My daily diary shows some 400 miles per month, for 4 years—1917-1921.” It just so happens, Charles had a first cousin who left those ole hills in a hurry one year. Later, another cousin, Mary Stuart Houchins, who became quite famous as a soap actress on the TV show “Search for Tomorrow”, wrote in her memoirs, that she had one cousin who was a revenuer, and one who shot a revenuer! Oh my gracious! I’ll have to ask Harvie and Pat if their Dad was ever shot!

Charles is probably best remembered for being elected to serve 5 terms in the Virginia House of Delegates. He was remembered in a tribute article in The Mountain Laurel now available online at http://www.mtnlaurel.com/. John H. Yeats wrote in 1989 that “the fact that he served with so much dedication, integrity and humility, set him apart from many of his legislative associates, and endeared him to many people.”

Spangler, Shelor home,cropped picture

Former home of Charles Langghorne Spangler, Virginia Legislator, and his wife, Kitty Clyde Cockram Langhorne

Tump Spangler, his wife Kitty Cockram, and their seven children grew up on a beautiful mountainous homestead that is still the home of one of his grandchildren. Once part of a 13,000 acre plantation owned in the Meadows of Dan by his grandfather, James Steptoe Langhorne, that land has belonged in the family for 200 years at least.

DSCF7252

Tump Spangler on the fiddle!

A statesman and a revenuer, Tump was also a musician, like all the Spanglers! In his younger days he won many a fiddler convention we are told, although it was his brother John Watts, “Babe” Spangler who became the famous “Old Virginia Fiddler” on the radio in Richmond, Virginia for 30 years! His sister’s husband and his first cousin, Dudley Spangler was another incredible fiddler along with first cousin Harry Houchins on the banjo, all members of this talented Spangler/Langhorne family!

Tump was my first cousin, 2x removed!  What a treat to see his family at our reunion coming up immediately! You will hear all about it I’m sure! With best wishes for your days, Helen

MOD, lover's Leap

View from “lover’s Leap” in Patrick county, NC, very close to the home of Charles Langhorne Spangler and also formerly part of his Grandfather’s plantation.

 

Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler (1885 – 1983)
is your 1st cousin 2x removed
mother of Charles Langhorne “Tump” Spangler
father of Frances (Fannie) Eunice (blind) Langhorne
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne
daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse –


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John Langhorne Arrived in the Royal Colony of Virginia about 1666 and his Descendants Reunion Next Week! –52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, #29

The Langhorne family reunion is coming up in a week and a half, August 1-3, 2014,  and I am so excited!  As far as I know, this is the first reunion this branch of the family has ever had. Parts of this group reunion regularly, but not as Langhornes! The Spangler branch of this family has a reunion every other year! The descendants of Evelyn Langhorne, my great-grandmother, are relatively small in number, 52, I think I counted recently! We were close as children, but as the older generation died, and as we moved to many different states in the US, we don’t see each other as often as we’d like! Due to my genealogical research, and to the miracles of facebook, I began to renew friendships with my immediate cousins, and  to get to know some of my Spangler cousins, and attended their reunion in 2013!  I fell in love with their wonderful family, my cousins,  and with Patrick County, Virginia’s breathtaking beauty in the mountainous area of southwest Virginia.  This is where our great- great- grandfather, James Steptoe had a 13,000 acre plantation! This is the same family as Lady Nancy Langhorne Astor, and the Gibson Girls, and many other people I have been writing about in my blog. They are a large family whose first immigrant, John Langhorne, came to  Virginia about 1666.  That is a lot of history! 348 years! Many families were huge as was the tradition. When some of us decided to organize a reunion, we quickly realized we did not have time to do the research and organization to find all the Langhornes. So, I got together with the Spanglers, and we decided to try uniting our two branches, the descendants of Fannie Langhorne Spangler  and Evelyn Langhorne Houchins, sisters and daughters of James Steptoe Langhorne and Elizabeth Rachel Omohundro! I volunteered to head up the organizing effort, because I wanted it to happen so strongly!  Even though we emphasized our two branches of the family, we were open to any Langhorne relation joining us! 

As part of this challenge to write about 52 ancestors in 52 weeks, I have chosen to highlight the Langhorne family to encourage people to attend the reunion and drum up interest! But of course, I have ended up learning so much! I even met another cousin , a descendant of a different child of James Steptoe Langhorne, the author of the new book The Virginia Langhornes, by James C. Langhorne. We have actually only met online, and will meet in person at the reunion where he will meet all of us as well as speak to us about his book. How I am looking forward to that! I am already planning to interview some family members while there, (look out!) , so that I can blog about them later! 

John Langhorne, arrived in Virginia by 1670 with his wife Rebecca Carter. Wow, here it is, 344 years later, and the history between us is staggering! John and Rebecca settled on a plantation on the James River and became members of the landed gentry very quickly.  Besides my cousin james C. Langhorne’s book, one of the foremost historians writing about John Langhorne has been Thomas Litten.  He states that John was born in 1640 and came to Warwick County, Va. in 1666. dying in 1687.  Just think, he lived only 47 years.  When I realize what he accomplished in 47 years, it amazes me!  Thomas Litten tells us in “The Langhornes–A First Family of Virginia”         

 

“Due to the destruction of a large number of Warwick County records during the Civil War, all that is known of Captain John Langhorne, is that he was a powerful and influential man. Upon his arrival in Virginia, John Langhorne purchased 1,300 acres from William Whitby, Jr. who was a Burgess for Warwick County. To this he later added 700 acres, which was acquired by a royal grant through the importation of indentured servants. As the most densely populated, and hence the most civilized and desirable county in Virginia, Warwick was an excellent location for John Langhorne to build his fortune. His 2,000-acre plantation was one of the largest in the lower Tidewater region. Among the larger planters of his day, John Langhorne traded his tobacco directly with the mother country for a hefty profit. He also handled shipments for the smaller planters who could not afford direct trade with England.

By the mid 1670’s John Langhorne had been appointed with Col. William Byrd I and Maj. Robert Beverley to fortify the three main rivers of Virginia. The coveted assignment proved to be very lucrative, and over the next several years, the House of Burgesses recorded many payments to John Langhorne, the largest of which amounted to 90,000 pounds of tobacco. At a time when most of the modest Virginia farmers made their living off of little more than 1,000 pounds of tobacco annually, this was an incredible sum. John Langhorne, William Byrd, and Robert Beverley were not soldiers themselves, rather they were assigned to oversee the construction and operation of the essential forts. On the heels of his success with the York River Fort, John Langhorne was elected to the House of Burgesses in 1680, thus establishing a tradition of political service that would characterize his prominent descendents.

Capt. John Langhorne died around 1687, leaving his large estate in the capable care of his wife and his good friend Col. Miles Cary II of neighboring Richneck plantation, until his eldest son John Langhorne, Jr. (1666-1688) came of age. John Jr. along with the youngest son William Langhorne died early, leaving Maurice Langhorne to inherit the entire estate.

As the sole heir of John Langhorne, Maurice Langhorne (1670-1698) inherited a huge estate. Around 1690 he married Anne Cary of “The Forest”. Anne Cary was the daughter of Capt. Henry Cary, a planter who was well-known as the master builder of Williamsburg. The marriage of Maurice Langhorne to Anne Cary was a good one, for the Carys were one of the wealthiest and most influential families in the Virginia Colony. In 1695, Maurice and Anne Langhorne had their only child, whom they named John Langhorne. Within three short years Maurice Langhorne died, and young John was sent to “The Forest” to be raised by his maternal grandparents Henry and Judith Cary. Anne Cary Langhorne soon remarried, a member of another prominent Tidewater family, Benjamin Harrison III of Charles City County. Until John Langhorne III (1695-1767) reached his majority, the Harrison family operated Gambell plantation. For the next twenty years, John Langhorne would spend his days in the polite atmosphere of the Cary plantation.

When in his early twenties however, John Langhorne III had become anxious for his own personal success. Thus in 1719, he took over Gambell and married Mary Beverley of Middlesex County. Mary Beverley was a granddaughter of Capt. John Langhorne’s old friend and contemporary Maj. Robert Beverley. Throughout his long career, Hon. John Langhorne served as a Justice of the Peace, a member of the House of Burgesses, Sheriff of Warwick County, and Presiding Justice of Warwick County from 1749-1762. In addition to his numerous political duties, John Langhorne III continued to expand his land holdings by purchasing new plantations in Chesterfield County, and was also a highly successful merchant, continuing the tradition laid out by his fortune-founding grandfather some fifty years before. John Langhorne and Mary Beverley had three children who left issue. Their only daughter Lockey (named after Judith Lockey, the wife of Capt. Henry Cary and mother of Anne Cary) was successfully courted by Thomas Tabb. Lockey’s considerable dowry helped to establish the Tabb family as members of the Tidewater elite. The elder son, Maj. Maurice Langhorne II (1719-1790) removed to Cumberland County to live near his cousin Col. Archibald Cary of “Ampthill” and his lovely wife, the former Mary Randolph of “Curles”. This Maurice Langhorne bought thousands of acres in Cumberland and established himself as a great success in his own right.

The younger son, Maj. William Langhorne (1721-1797) held possession of the Warwick County estates and became the most prominent of the three. He married Elizabeth Cary Scarsbrook, a cousin of George Washington and Thomas Nelson, and daughter of the wealthy Yorktown merchant Col. Henry Scarsbrook. Henry Scarsbrook was the great-grandson of Capt. Nicholas Martiau, the man whose plantation was later turned into Yorktown. Like his father, William Langhorne served as a Sheriff, Justice of the Peace, and as a Burgess. He was also a magistrate for forty years. During the Revolutionary War, William Langhorne served as aide-de-camp to the Marquis de Lafayette, was a member of the Committee of Safety, and was the only representative of Warwick County for the first four out of five Revolutionary Conventions. His service has been commemorated on a memorial in Williamsburg. Of his nine children, two sons were the most prominent. Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne (1760-1797) married the daughter of his Uncle Maj. Maurice Langhorne of Cumberland, thus reuniting two lines of family inheritance. Marrying of cousins, a common practice among the wealthy families of Virginia and other colonies likewise, helped to keep money in the family. John Scarsbrook Langhorne’s younger brother, another Maurice Langhorne (1769-1818) married Martha Holladay of “Indian Fields”, and their grandson Maurice Finney Langhorne married Lillian Isabelle Blair Polk, a close relative of President James K. Polk.

Due to the untimely drowning of their father in the James River in 1797, the three sons of Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne received equal portions of both their father and their grandfather’s estates. An interesting event occurred at this time. Peter Carr, a favorite nephew of Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to George Washington under the name of his kinsman John Langhorne. The letter was intended to “elicit political sentiments useful to the republican cause in Virginia.” However, when it was discovered that John Langhorne had recently died and that the true author of the letter was Peter Carr, George Washington became very suspicious of Thomas Jefferson, as he had assumed that Peter Carr had written the letter under the instructions of Thomas Jefferson. The infamous “Langhorne Letter” was published in 1803.

The eldest of the three brothers and heirs of John Scarsbrook Langhorne’s estate was William Langhorne (1783-1858) who moved to Bedford County, where he wed Catherine Callaway, the daughter of the extremely rich planter and iron manufacturer Col. James Callaway of “Royal Forest”, whose third wife was Mary Langhorne of Cumberland. William Langhorne was, like his father-in-law, a planter and iron manufacturer, who was said to be the most courtly gentleman of his day.

The second brother Maurice Langhorne (1787-1865) moved to Lynchburg, where his inherited wealth was fantastically increased by his successful forays in the Lynchburg tobacco market. Before he died, Maurice Langhorne built for his children the famous “Langhorne’s Row,” a set of four extravagant Greek Revival Lynchburg townhouses, whose architectural sophistication was unmatched anywhere in Virginia with the sole exception of Richmond.

The youngest brother Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne (1790-1854) would surpass them all. Although he was first seated on some of the Cumberland County lands that he had inherited through his mother, he quickly resolved to move to Lynchburg with his brother Maurice. In 1816 Henry S. Langhorne married Frances Callaway Steptoe, the highly sought after daughter of Hon. James Steptoe and Frances Callaway of “Federal Hill”. Here begins a series of interesting family connections that beautifully illustrate the “web of kinship” that existed between Virginia’s ruling families. Frances Callaway was an older sister of Catherine Callaway, wife of Henry Langhorne’s brother William. Hon. James Steptoe was the eldest son of Westmoreland County planter Col. James Steptoe of “Nominy Hall” and his second wife Elizabeth Eskridge of “Sandy Point” (a daughter of Col. George Eskridge, the guardian of Mary Ball Washington). Hon. James Steptoe had two sisters, Elizabeth Steptoe who married Col. Philip Ludwell Lee of “Stratford”, and Anne Steptoe who married Samuel Washington and became the mother of George Steptoe Washington who in turn married Lucy Payne, the sister of First Lady Dolly Payne Madison. Hon. James Steptoe also had two half sisters who were his mother’s daughters by her first husband William Aylett. The first sister, Mary Aylett, married Thomas Ludwell Lee, and the second, Anne Aylett, became the first wife of Richard Henry Lee of “Chantilly”.

The powerful connections of the Steptoe and Callaway families ensured that the Langhornes, although newcomers from the Tidewater, were met with constant success in the Virginia Piedmont. As the planting of tobacco was no longer as profitable as it had once been, Henry S. Langhorne erected in Lynchburg, the second largest milling firm in Virginia. He never abandoned planting though, and continued to buy numerous plantations in Bedford, Campbell and Amherst Counties. In 1845, he retired and relocated to “Cloverdale”, the 3,500-acre Botetourt County plantation he had just purchased from his niece’s husband George Plater Tayloe of “Buena Vista”. His eldest son John Scarsbrook Langhorne (born 1819) married Sarah Elizabeth Dabney of “Edgemont”, a great-granddaughter of William Randolph II of “Chatesworth”. He inherited Langhorne Mills, along with the bulk of his father’s estate. The second son James Steptoe Langhorne (1822-1905) was given an ample number of slaves and the 13,000-acre “Langdale” plantation located near the border of North Carolina.”

This brings us up to the children of James Steptoe Langhorne some of whose descendants will be visiting the remains of his Langdale Plantation in just over a week’s time! Wow! Living history! Our newest author of Langhorne history, James C. Langhorne has done research that found some differing information from Thomas Litten’s work. Progress and change are to be expected as new discoveries are made. As I learn more, you will hear about it! Expect lots of pictures from my own camera! 

Women’s Suffrage Movement in America—Elizabeth Dabney Langhorne—52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, #28

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I wonder if the knowledge that women weren’t allowed to vote in the USA until 1920 bothers other women like it does me!? Not that I think about it often to tell you the truth, but every so often the topic comes up, and it just slays me! 1920! That makes me only the second generation of women who have had the right to vote—and vote I do baby! LOL My Mom was born in 1918, and I in 1949 — yet, I already took being allowed to vote for granted, never realizing what a fight it had been to get that right! Isn’t that amazing! Now I understand better why my Mom was such an advocate for voting! She worked the polls, took us, her four children with her at times to teach us how the voting worked, and generally was a strong activist!

Langhorne, Elizabeth Dabney

Elizabeth Dabney Langhorne, The Virginia Langhornes by James C. Langhorne, p. 183.

I learned that one of our cousins, Mom’s 1st cousin, 2x removed, was one of the strongest advocates for women’s rights in the state of Virginia (where my Mom and I were born, and where we both grew up)! I am so proud of this ancestor and cousin– Elizabeth Dabney Langhorne! She was the founder and President of the Equal Suffrage Club in Lynchburg, Virginia, then became the Vice President of the Equal Suffrage League of the State of Virginia! From the 1850’s to 1920 many women activists worked tirelessly to lobby their lawmakers, and convince their sisters and coworkers that women should have a voice in electing those who “ruled” them, those who made their laws, those who affected their families and their very lives.  They had to convince people that they were thinking people with brains like men! This was the 1900’s—almost 300 years after our country was first settled! Good grief, how did we let that happen? Black men were given the right to vote in 1870 by the Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, but women were still not allowed! Women all over the country gave speeches, held protests, demanded their rights…and time after time, they were turned down! They held parades, athletic competitions, wrote magazine articles—formed national and state organizations to try to organize their movement and their voice! By 1890, they were more united, lead by famous women like Susan B. Anthony, and Lucy Stone. I thought this description in Wikipedia about suffrage was very interesting:

On January 12, 1915, a suffrage bill was brought before the House of Representatives but was defeated by a vote of 204 to 174, (Democrats 170-85 against, Republicans 81-34 for, Progressives 6-0 for).[76] Another bill was brought before the House on January 10, 1918. On the evening before, President Wilson made a strong and widely published appeal to the House to pass the bill. It was passed by two-thirds of the House, with only one vote to spare. The vote was then carried into the Senate. Again President Wilson made an appeal, but on September 30, 1918, the amendment fell two votes short of the two-thirds necessary for passage, 53-31 (Republicans 27-10 for, Democrats 26-21 for).[77] On February 10, 1919, it was again voted upon, and then it was lost by only one vote, 54-30 (Republicans 30-12 for, Democrats 24-18 for).[78] There was considerable anxiety among politicians of both parties to have the amendment passed and made effective before the general elections of 1920, so the President called a special session of Congress, and a bill, introducing the amendment, was brought before the House again. On May 21, 1919, it was passed, 304 to 89, (Republicans 200-19 for, Democrats 102-69 for, Union Labor 1-0 for, Prohibitionist 1-0 for),[79] 42 votes more than necessary being obtained. On June 4, 1919, it was brought the Senate, and after a long discussion it was passed, with 56 ayes and 25 nays (Republicans 36-8 for, Democrats 20-17 for).[80] Within a few days, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Michigan ratified the amendment, their legislatures being then in session. Other states followed suit at a regular pace, until the amendment had been ratified by 35 of the necessary 36 state legislatures. After Washington on March 22, 1920, ratification languished for months. Finally, on August 18, 1920, Tennessee narrowly ratified the Nineteenth Amendment, making it the law throughout the United States.[81] Thus the 1920 election was the first United States presidential election in which women were permitted to vote in every state. Nearly twenty years later Maryland ratified the amendment in 1941. After another ten years, in 1952, Virginia ratified the Nineteenth Amendment, followed by Alabama in 1953.[82] After another 16 years Florida and South Carolina passed the necessary votes to ratify in 1969, followed two years later by Georgia[83] and Louisiana in 1971.[84] Mississippi did not ratify the Nineteenth Amendment until 1984, sixty-four years after the law was enacted nationally.[85]

 

Finally, in 1920, they convinced enough citizens—men—to ratify the nineteenth amendment to the constitution which simply says, “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” Thank God for the national laws regarding this particular issue! Otherwise, my Mother would not have been able to vote in her lifetime in Virginia either! Good grief! It is hard for me to believe that I really did not understand what a fight this had been. I, myself, stood up for, lectured for, and protested for women’s rights in the 1970’s—women’s rights to work, to make the same money as men, the right to birth control…and often I think my daughters just take their freedoms for granted. Well, I took the right to vote for granted! With all my Mom’s activism re. voting, I did not understand the history behind it until I started working on my family’s genealogy and discovered Elizabeth Dabney Langhorne, one of those amazing women who helped move our society forward! Thank you and I am proud to be related to you! I want to give James C. Langhorne, author of The Virginia Langhornes, kudos for writing about this dynamic woman in his book which got my attention! After reading about her in his book, I found an interesting little character sketch about her on ancestry.com, author unknown however. It said, Elizabeth Dabney “Lizzie” Langhorne Lewis: “Lizzie” Langhorne was born in Botetourt County. The family moved to Lynchburg, where she was tutored and attended private schools. In 1873 she married John H. Lewis, an attorney. Her great-niece recalled that she had “a well-reasoned mind, curious about all new ideas, accepting nothing until she was convinced.” She was very political for a woman of her era and was a popular speaker on behalf of woman suffrage and improved working conditions for women. Later in life, she championed the League of Nations. For years she played the organ at the tiny…Unitarian Church in Lynchburg. When she was over seventy she went to the Sorbonne in Paris to perfect her French. “She voted Socialist at eighty,” recalled a relative, “because she said she was tired of both Republicans and Democrats and she wanted a change.” I imagine there are many of us today, July 2014, who would agree with her that we are tired of both Republicans and Democrats. Our country seems more polarized than ever and it is easy to see how we fell into Civil War once before. I hope long before that happens, —we “enlightened people”—will work together to find our mutual path, our mutual joys, and move in a new direction to make our country whole again. We have to move away from blaming and on towards solving, so what positive thing might you suggest, positive remember! LOL

Elizabeth Dabney Langhorne (1851 – 1946)
is your 1st cousin 3x removed
father of Elizabeth Dabney Langhorne
father of John Scarsbrook Langhorne
son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne
daughter of James Steptoe  Langhorne
daughter of Evelyn  Langhorne
daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse

This gallery contains 5 photos

Peyton Randolph, — Marked for Death by the British for His Role in the Continental Congress–52 Ancestors in 52 weeks, #26

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Peyton Randolph held so many leadership roles in Colonial America that his name appeared on a list obtained from the British of people to be captured and hung until dead! This was war after all, and Peyton Randolph was an outspoken leader! It has been said he was the real “Father of our country” and /or “the Father of the Revolution.”  When you study his life and accomplishments, you can’t help but be impressed and realize how blessed we were to have such  intelligent, proactive men in the colonies. 

Peyton Randolph was born about 1721 in Williamsburg, Virginia. He was the second son of John and Susannah Beverly Randolph. This placed him in one of the wealthiest, most powerful planter families in Virginia! His father died when he was only 16, but he was already focused on attending William and Mary College and becoming a lawyer. He went back to England for law school, and upon returning to Virginia in 1744, was asked by Governor William Gooch to be the attorney general for the colony. By 1746 he had married Elizabeth Harrison and by 1749, Peyton had served as a vestryman for Bruton Parish Church, a representative in the House of Burgesses, and a Justice of the Peace–I wonder if he realized he was just beginning his life’s work! 

In 1753, when Peyton was only 32 years old, he was hired as an attorney to represent the House of Burgesses! He was sent to England to basically ask the King to veto the Governor of Virginia–Gov. Robert Dinwiddie ‘s new practice of charging a “tax”- a fee  for certifying land patents.  Going over the governor’s head was unheard of! However, London officials supported Peyton and the Gov. rescinded his tax and reinstated Peyton to his office from which he’d been fired! Talk about fireworks! Do you think those English officials were really mad they had supported Peyton Randolph as he moved on to support the revolutionary movement?!

Always active in colony leadership, things really heated up in 1764. As colonists learned more,  they became infuriated by The Stamp Act and conflict with England and the crown itself became more overt. Peyton was directed by the Virginia House of Burgesses to draft a set of protests to the King and Parliament! In 1766, Peyton was elected Speaker of the House of Burgesses. In 1769, Peyton and Patrick Henry, who had disagreed before, came together to work on passing resolves against the Towshend Duties. The Governor –Gov. Botetourt, however, disagreed with them, and dissolved the House of Burgesses! According to an article written in the online resources of Colonial Williamsburg  re. Peyton Randolph,  “The “former representatives of the people,” as they called themselves, met the next day at the Raleigh Tavern with Speaker Peyton Randolph in the chair. They adopted a compact drafted by George Mason and introduced by George Washington against the importation of British goods. Speaker Randolph was the first to sign.”  Obviously the House of Burgesses was reconvened in the next few months, and the Townshend Duties were repealed  except for that on tea! By 1773, the colonists were all upset with England again over the Boston Tea Party and its continuing conflicts. In 1774 the House of Burgesses passed a resolution written by Thomas Jefferson that said, 

“This House, being deeply impressed with apprehension of the great dangers, to be derived to British America, from the hostile Invasion of the City of Boston, in our Sister Colony of Massachusetts bay, whose commerce and harbour are, on the first Day of June next, to be stopped by an Armed force, deem it highly necessary that the said first day of June be set apart, by the Members of this House, as a day of Fasting, Humiliation and Prayer, devoutly to implore the divine interposition for averting the heavy Calamity which threatens destruction to our Civil Rights, and the Evils of civil War; to give us one heart and one Mind to firmly oppose, by all just and proper means, every injury to American Rights; and that the Minds of his Majesty and his parliament, may be inspired from above with Wisdom, Moderation, and Justice, to remove from the loyal People of America, all cause of danger, from a continued pursuit of Measure, pregnant with their ruin.” (Colonial Williamsburg ref. cited previously)

In response,  “Governor Dunmore summoned the House on May 26, 1774 and told them: “Mr. Speaker and Gentlemen of the House of Burgesses, I have in my hand a paper published by order of your House, conceived in such terms as reflect highly upon His Majesty and the Parliament of Great Britain, which makes it necessary for me to dissolve you; and you are accordingly dissolved.”  

Again, the burgesses gathered at Raleigh Tavern and the very next day at Peyton Randolph’s house.  They planned a Virginia Convention that would take place prior to the Continental Congress which their group had proposed just the day before! (If you’d like, you can see a newspaper article written about one of the meetings of the Virginia Conventions in my blog post on William Langhorne, my 5th great-grandfather who took part.) On September 5, 1774, Peyton Randolph was unanimously elected Chairman of the First Continental Congress in the colonies! From then on he was accompanied everywhere he went by voluntary armed militia! They had learned that there was a list  for the execution of “rebel leaders” which included Peyton Randolph. In the Continental Congress meetings, the leaders of the thirteen colonies, with Georgia not participating until late in the second congress, It became increasingly clear that the colonies needed to make a “Declaration of Independence” and form their own government! The United States Declaration of Independence was formally approved on July 4, 1776, a date we continue to  celebrate today! The Articles of Confederation weren’t passed until November 1777. The Revolutionary War is generally considered lasting from 1775-1783. The defeat of the British at Yorktown, Virginia, with the French helping the Americans capture over 7000 British soldiers, effectively ended the war. The Treaty of Paris officially ended the war and recognized the sovereignty of the United States of America in 1783! (Another blog post re. Yorktown is: Nicholas Martiau, Ancestor of George Washington and My 9th Great Grandfather — 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks)

Peyton Randolph continued to lead and inspire in the third Virginia convention! Unfortunately, on October 23, 1775  on a Sunday evening, Peyton had a stroke and died immediately. While he was first buried at Christ’s Church in Philadelphia, in 1776 he was brought home to Williamsburg and his “remains interred in the family crypt in the Chapel at the College of William and Mary.” ibid. How sad that he died before Independence was gained after working so hard for it. However, he has truly gone down in history for his leadership and contributions. 

Peyton Randolph was my second cousin! Since learning about him , and researching so man y illustrious ancestors in our family’s past, I have looked at current  family members with different interest, analysis, and respect perhaps. The characteristics of strong opinions, leadership, activism, and outspokenness can be interpreted many ways. Historically, we look back and usually admire the men and women who were our leaders, especially the ones who took us in brave new directions. But in the midst of making history, many hard feelings are often created. Peyton’s brother John was a loyalist to the crown, so he ended up leaving his brother and moving back to England, disgusted with what he saw as his brother’s treasonous behavior–the results of which we are celebrating today! Currently in our country,  we have a huge split between conservatives and liberals about how to run our country. The anger and rhetoric are not unlike that expressed by the citizens of our country at the time of the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, and the time of Civil Rights–especially the 1960’s.  Maybe there comes a point where people must take a stand, where there is no room to compromise. I don’t like to think that, but we all have different ideas about what is “right”. Peyton Randolph had his ideas, and he was willing to put his life on the line, and he did, to support his beliefs. What a wonderful week to remember this ancestor–the week of July 4th, 2014! 

 

Peyton Randolph (1721 – 1775)
is your 2nd cousin 6x removed
mother of Peyton Randolph
father of Susannah Beverley
father of Col Peter Beverley
daughter of Maj. Robert Beverley Sr.
son of Mary Beverley
daughter of Maurice Langhorne
son of Elizabeth Langhorne
son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne
daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse

This gallery contains 6 photos

Present at the Birth of the Our Country, William Langhorne, 1721-1797, –52 Ancestors in 52 weeks, #25

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St. Johns Church, Richmond, Virginia

St. John’s Church, Richmond, Virginia

Newspaper archives make genealogy come alive! They make history come alive! That’s one reason I love my subscription to genealogybank.com. The articles I have found there have made my ancestors real for me! Normally searching the archives for specific relatives, the other day, on a whim, I opened genealogybank .com and entered the family name I was currently researching, Langhorne, then entered “oldest” to search for the oldest articles they had on the family. Bingo! Several small things from 1771–came up, but then I found this– the first real newspaper article. It came from the Virginia Gazette in Williamsburg Virginia, Issue 1234, pages 2 and 3, Saturday, April 1, 1775.  It is an article about the gathering  of the Delegates of the counties in the Colony of Virginia at a Convention held at St. John’s Church in Richmond, Virginia,from March 20, 1775-March 27, 1775. During this meeting the Delegates chose their representatives to the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. More about the Second Continental Congress itself in a minute, but let’s look at this local, Virginia meeting first.

Second Continental Congress

A depiction of the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia on May 10, 1775 from Wikimedia commons.

Look who was present just among the  Virginians — George Washington (my fourth cousin), Thomas Jefferson, Peyton Randolph, John Tabb, Robert Lawson, John Nicholas, Bartholomew Dandridge, Thomas Walker, Richard Bland, James Mercer, Carters, John Harvie, Thomas Mann Randolph, Francis Lightfoot Lee, Henry Taylor, Archibald Cary (my first cousin), James Scott, Henry Lee, Richard Lee, Thomas Nelson, Patrick Henry, and many more.  Most important to me in this moment, is that my  fifth  great-grandfather, William Langhorne was present at this immensely important meeting with all these august leaders of our colony of Virginia, where they charted a course for our future! He had actually been present at all of the Conventions in Virginia so far.  This one however, is when Patrick Henry gave his famous speech saying, “Give me liberty, or give me death!” The delegates  not only elected Virginia’s representatives to the Second Continental Congress at this meeting, but they laid out a plan for Virginia to fight the Revolutionary War, how it would raise the armies, organize them, arm them, and how the citizens would help with everything from ammunition, to conserving wool to make clothes for the soldiers! The detailed plans they made are clearly laid out in the newspaper article below. Chosen to represent the Colony of Virginia at the Second Continental Congress were the Hon. Peyton Randolph, Esq. George Washington, Patrick Henry, Richard Henry Lee, Edmund Pendleton, Benjamin Harrison, and Richard Bland, Esquires. (this can be seen in the write-up from Saturday, March 25, 1775)

 

Screenshot 2014-06-23 13.23.32 Screenshot 2014-06-23 13.24.18  Screenshot 2014-06-23 13.25.00

 

This explanation from Wikipedia about the Second continental congress explains it much better than my paraphrasing could do:  The Second Continental Congress was a convention of delegates from the Thirteen Colonies that started meeting in the summer of 1775, in PhiladelphiaPennsylvania, soon after warfare in the American Revolutionary War had begun. It succeeded the First Continental Congress, which met between September 5, 1774 and October 25, 1774, also in Philadelphia. The second Congress managed the colonial war effort, and moved incrementally towards independence, adopting the United States Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. By raising armies, directing strategy, appointing diplomats, and making formal treaties, the Congress acted as the de facto national government of what became the United States.

When the Second Continental Congress came together on May 10, 1775 it was, in effect, a reconvening of the First Continental Congress. Many of the same 56 delegates who attended the first meeting were in attendance at the second, and the delegates appointed the same president (Peyton Randolph) and secretary (Charles Thomson).[2]Notable new arrivals included Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania and John Hancock of Massachusetts. Within two weeks, Randolph was summoned back to Virginia to preside over the House of Burgesses; he was replaced in the Virginia delegation by Thomas Jefferson, who arrived several weeks later. Henry Middleton was elected as president to replace Randolph, but he declined. Hancock was elected president on May 24″

 This is not a story about the Revolutionary War, but about getting ready for war, getting ready for independence and the amazing feeling we can get when we realize this was not just statesmen and their rhetoric, but our grandfathers, our cousins. You might want to read a former post Genealogical Find of the Day where I wrote about this same William Langhorne and his service as the Aide-De- Camp to Marquis De Lafayette. He was a busy man in those years, yet he married Elizabeth Cary Scarsbrook and had  nine children to carry on his legacy, a legacy of service and leadership. I may never experience a July 4th celebration again without thinking of our grandfather William Langhorne, and all the men who were brave enough to declare our independence, craft our Constitution, and fight for our independence! Thanks to all of them! 

 

Maj. William Langhorne

Birth 1721 in Gambell, Warwick, Virginia, United States
Death Sep 1797 in Gambell, Warwick, Virginia, United States

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William Langhorne,1721-1797, Aide de Camp to Marquis de Lafayette, 52 ancestors in 52 weeks #19

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Marquis de Lafayette

This is a story about our fifth great-grandfather William Langhorne that I actually found on ancestry.com, unfortunately without an author identified! I have blogged about him before, but not for this challenge. I personally think having a grandfather who served with Lafayette, is simply amazing!

“The younger son of Capt. John Langhorne, Maj. William Langhorne (1721-1797) held possession of the Warwick County, Virginia, estates and became the most prominent of the sons. He married Elizabeth Cary Scarsbrook, a cousin of George Washington and Thomas Nelson, and daughter of the wealthy Yorktown merchant Col. Henry Scarsbrook and his wife Martha Cary (of the illustrious Cary family, for which the town of Cary, North Carolina is named). Henry Scarsbrook was the great-grandson of Capt. Nicholas Martiau, the man whose plantation was later turned into Yorktown.

Like his father, William Langhorne served as a Sheriff, Justice of the Peace, and as a Burgess. He was also a magistrate for forty years. During the Revolutionary War, William Langhorne served as aide-de-camp to Marquis de Lafayette, was a member of the Committee of Safety, and was the only representative of Warwick County for the first four out of five Revolutionary Conventions. His service has been commemorated on a memorial in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Just what is an “aide-de-camp”? According to this article in Wikipedia, “An aide-de-camp (French for field assistant) is a personal assistant, secretary, or adjutant to a person of high rank, usually a senior military officer or a head of state. The first aide-de-camp is typically the foremost personal aide.

In some countries, the aide-de-camp is considered to be a title of honor (which confers the post-nominal letters ADC or A de C), and participates at ceremonial functions.The badge of office for an aide-de-camp is usually the aiguillette, a braided cord in gold or other colors, worn on the shoulder of a uniform. Whether it is worn on the left or the right shoulder is dictated by protocol.”

Of William Langhorne’s nine children, two sons were the most prominent. Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne (1760-1797) married Elizabeth Langhorne, daughter of his Uncle Maj. Maurice Langhorne of Cumberland, thus uniting two lines of family inheritance. Marrying of cousins, a common practice among the wealthy families of Virginia and other colonies likewise, helped to keep money in the family. John Scarsbrook Langhorne’s younger brother, another Maurice Langhorne (1769-1818) married Martha Holladay of “Indian Fields”, and their grandson Maurice Finney Langhorne married Lillian Isabelle Blair Polk, a close relative of President James K. Polk, a native of North Carolina..” (source unknown)

My husband and daughter Annie are native North Carolinians, my older daughter Ali has three children born in North Carolina. and although Virginia will always be home to me, I have now lived in North Carolina longer than I lived in Virginia and am proud of my family’s North Carolina heritage. Having these connections certainly makes history come alive. Below i show my descendancy chart from William Langhorne. It’s just astounding to me what you find when you start digging around in your family tree!

Maj. William Langhorne (1721 – 1797)
is your 5th great grandfather
son of Maj. William Langhorne
son of Maj. John Scarsbrook Langhorne
son of Henry Scarsbrook Langhorne
daughter of James Steptoe (blind) Langhorne
daughter of Evaline (going blind when died young)) Langhorne
daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins
You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse

 

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