Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Book Review: "1815 Directory of Virginia Landowners Botetourt County Virginia" with last name index

The following is a summary of Roger G. Ward's "1815 Directory of Virginia Landowners Botetourt County Virginia". This is a paperback print by New Papyrus Co., Inc. of Athens, Georgia and contains 51 pages.

In 1782 the General Assembly of Virginia enacted new tax laws which created within each county an enumeration of land and certain personal property. These early land tax laws required a tax commissioner in each district of a county to record a list of the names of persons owning land or town lots, the quantity of land owned and its value, and the amount of tax owed. By 1813, a brief geographic description (usually citing an adjacent stream, road, or other landmark) was required; in 1814, the distance and direction from the courthouse for each parcel was also added to the tax rolls.

This work is an alphabetical listing of all 1815 landowners found in the county, as well as the accompanying description of the location of the said property. They have not included the number of acres, taxes assessed, or any transactions between landowners which may have been noted on the tax rolls; also, in many cases the geographic location was provided as "adjacent to John Smith", etc. and, while useful many times to a genealogist, was considered to be beyond the objectives of this project. The reader is encouraged to consider the information here-in as an "outline" of early landowners in Virginia rather than a "text" due to the year-to-year variation in information provided to the clerk (or recorded by the clerk), omissions, lack of "identifiers" to determine if "same name" was also "same person" within a district or across districts, marginal quality/clarity (in a few cases) of the microfilm copy, and, not least, errors on the part of either the original clerks or the current author while transcribing.

Some of the approaches to utilizing the 1815 landowner information include:
  • Observe distinct clusters of the same surname within a county in order to clarify the common surnames such as "Smith", "Anderson", etc.
  • Identify non-resident landowners and their county (or state) of residence (these people often being former residents of the current county)
  • Determine neighbors with different surnames (often being relatives)
  • Use the 1815 info as a "bridge" from the 18th and 19th century deed/will books to the 17th and 18th century land grants/patents in the county
  • Evaluate the 1810 to 1840 census information which generally grouped neighbors
  • Substitute this information for missing deed/will books in the "burned" counties; and, clarify/enhance vague deed/will information in the counties with more complete records
Each entry is listed as: Surname, name, personal identifiers (if any); location/place-name of land; miles/direction from the 1815 courthouse. If multiple owners are listed for a property, the listing is duplicated under each of the owner's surnames (i.e "Smith and Brown" is also listed as "Brown, --see Smith"); when multiple owners share a common surname, the property is only listed once. When a landowner had land at more than one location/place-name, the miles/direction listing for each parcel is in the same sequence as the location listing (i.e. James RV, Slate CK; 12N, 5SW.). In the few cases where a landowner had "many" parcels, the miles/direction notation is attached to the location listing (i.e. Sandy RV- 5NE, Willow CK-7S, etc.)

If you would like to purchase a copy of this book, let me know.

Here are two sample entries from the book:
  • "Boggs, Stephen, of Rockbridge County; Arnolds Valley; 25E"
  • "Bridgland, Soloman; Fincastle"
The following is a list of names made from the surname frequency index at the front of the book:

Abbot Abel Acton Acton Aston Adams Alderson Alexander Allen Amen Amix Amyx Anderson Angel Arbuckle Armontrout Armstrong Arnold Ashdon Austin Aversole Bachus Bailey Bain Baker Banday Bandey Banks Banning Barclay Bare Barger Barnes Barney Barnhart Barten Bartlet Baxter Bays Beagler Beal Beale Beard Beckner Beher Beaker Bell Bennett Betts Biggs Bilbro Billups Bird Bishop Black Blain Blair Blunt Boggess Boggs Bolt Book Booker Booth Booze Borze Bossvinder Boswillman Botts Bower Bowers Bowyer Bowyers Boyd Breakenridge Bream Briant Brickey Bridgland Brits Bronomer Brooks Brough Brown Brownlee Bryan Bryans Buckhannon Bukner Buknor Burger Burket Burkholder Burndrager Burns Burwell Bush Butcher Butler Butlor Butt Cahoon Caldwell Campbell Camper Carden Cardon Carlton Carnez Carpenter Carper Carrol Cartmill Carvin Casey Chambers Champ Chandler Chapman Chevalier Chisholm Circle Clark Cleck Clegg Clice Cloyd Coffman Coldmen Coldoon Coldwell Cole Compston Cook Coon Cooper Copp Correll Cox Cradock Craft Crawford Crist Crites Crocket Crodion Cross Crouse Crush Custard Custer Dagges Dames Daina Daniel Daton Davidson Davis Davison Day Deal Deardoff Delong Delzell Dempsey Dennis Denton Depew Depey Dicson Dill Dillard Dillman Dillmon Dilmon Disher Dodd Dollman Donald Donner Douglas Douthal Douthat Douthet Downs Drake Duckwilor Dudding Dunnington Duval Duvall Dwier Eakin Earhart Earley Eddington Edgar Edslor Eller Erley Ervin Evans Falls Faris Farrier Farris Faught Fergerson Ferrel Filson Findley Firestone Fizer Flaharty Fleeger Fleming Flook Forest Forgerson Forrester Fout Fowler Frank Franklin Fransisco Frants French Fringer Fudge Fulhart Fults Fulwiler Gafford Galbraith Gallego Gannt Garat Garnant Garwood Gates Gattey Gay George Gharst Gibbins Gillaspie Gilleland Gilmore Gish Givens Glasburn Glinn Glyn Godwin Gofford Gohsen Goodman Gorden Gormon Gortner Gortnur Graham Graves Gray Graybill Green Greenlee Greenwood Griffin Grimes Grinniway Grissa Grist Gross Ground Grup Guillford Guthery Hamilton Hammett Hammond Hancock Hanley Hannah Hanner Hannon Hardey Hardy Hare Harkman Harman Harris Harrison Harshbarger Hart Hartman Harvey Hausmon Haymaker Haynes Hays Hays Hazlewood Heck Hedrick Helmondoller Helms Henderliter Henderson Hendrixon Henry Heplor Herd Hewit Hickel Hickman Hill Hime Hinor Hinten Hipes Hiveley Hogg Holler Holstin Honts Hook Horn Houston Houts Howard Howel Howrey Huddle Hudson Huff Huffman Huhn Humphries Hunter Hurst Icehower Inglehart Intzminger Irvine Isaacks Jackson James Janny Jenkins Johnson Johnston Jones Jordan Jordon Kaylor Kayser Kayton Keachey Keefavaur Keeth Keith Kelley Kelly Kem Kennerly Kenny Keplar Kerns Kerrigan Kesler Keslor Kilmer Kimberling King Kinzey Kirk Kirzman Kittinger Knox Kybert Kyle Lackey Lackland Lafau Lamkin Lamuir Lamuin Lanius Lark Lavander Law Lawman Lawry Lawson Ledbetter Leffel Leffle Leib Lemmon Lemon Lewis Linch Lindsay Linglocker Linkinanger Linkinauger Linkinhoker Little Lockett Lockhart Logan Long Long Lang Looney Loony Loop Love Luck Lynn Madison Magget Mahan Malling Mallow Malory Mangess Mankspile Manley Markey Marshel Martain Martin Mason Matthews Maund Maxwell May Mays McCarroll McClanahan McClung McClure McColgan McConnal McConnell McCreary McCrery McCroskey McDermot McDonnald McDowell McFalls McFerran McGeorge McGowen McIlhaney McIlvoy McIver McKalister McKinlay McMichen McNaughton McNeal McNight McRoberts Means Middlecoff Middlecuff Miller Millirous Mills Minick Mitchel Mitchell Moomaw Moore More More Moseley Mosley Moyar Moyars Moyer Moyers Muldrath Murphey Murrey Muse Myers Myors Neelly Neil Nelson Newell Newman Nicely Nicewonger Nicholas Nidey Nininger Noftzinger Norville Nutter Obenihain ODonald Olinger Olverson ONeal Otey Ovenshane Overholts Owen Palmer Panter Pappey Parrish Parsons Pate Patterson Paxton Payn Peale Peck Peery Pefley Pence Perey Persing Persinger Peterman Peters Pettey Phillips Pickle Pitzer Platt Poage Polk Porter Portiaux Prank Preston Prewett Prince Pyror Quarrier Rader Rank Raybig Reddey Redinger Redmond Reed Reid Renn Reynolds Rhoads Richardson Rickey Riddle Riddlesebarger Riffe Riggle Rightsman Rinehart Ripley Risque Roan Roberts Robertson Robison Rock Roger Rogers Ross Routsaw Rowland Royal Rudisell Rule Rumsay Rutherford Saftley Sarver Sawyer Sawyers Scandlan Scott Seacat Seacatt Seacott Seacrest Sefford Segle Senty Sentz Server Seslar Seslor Shanklin Shanks Sharrod Shatser Shaver Shawver Sheets Sheffer Sheffey Shepherd Sherkey Sherman Sherod Shewalter Shewey Shirkey Shrewsberry Simmons Simpson Sims Singer Sites Skidmore Skillern Smelser Smiley Smith Snider Snodgrass Snyder Spangler Speckhart Spetsard Spickard Spitler Staley Stanback Stanley Star Starrett Stephens Sterrett Stetlor Stever Stewart Stoner Stover Strickland Stull Sullinbarger Summerfield Switzer Tapscott Tate Tayloe Taylor Tebbs Terry Thomas Thrasher Thresher Tosh Trenis Trenor Tressler Trigg Trout Turner Unrue Upton Urmey Urmey Vandine Vanmetre Vaugn Vinyard Wadkins Waggoner Wagnor Waits Walker Wallace Wallis Walton Ward Warner Watkins Watson Watts Wax Weathers Weaver Webster Welch Wert Werts West Westler White Whitecraft Whiteneck Whitten Wiley Wilhelm Williams Willson Wilson Winmon Wisner Wolf Woltz Womack Wood Woods Woodson Woolf Wooltz Woolwine Wornock Wray Wright Wysong Young Younghusband Zentmier Zimmerman Zull

Again, if you would like to purchase a copy of this book, let me know.

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