1784 Tax Lists Caswell County NC – Williams

In 1784 Caswell County, NC consisted of 8 districts – Richmond, Caswell, Gloucester, St. David’s, St. Lawrence, St. Luke’s, St. James, and Nash. In 1792, Caswell County was split into two counties – Caswell and Person. St. Lawrence, St. Luke’s, St. James, and Nash counties became Person County in 1792.

According to the 1784 Caswell County Tax list, there were 5 Williams men being taxed:

Richmond District – 0 Williams families were taxed

Caswell District – 0 Williams families were taxed

Gloucester District – 0 Williams families were taxed

St. David’s District – John Williams, Att, taxed for 1500 acres on Country Line Creek, 1 white poll and 6 black polls

St. Lawrence’s District – Tobias Williams taxed for 0 acres, and 1 white poll (0 black polls) and William Williams taxed for 163.5 acres on Cane Creek, 1 white poll and 0 black polls

St. Luke’s District – 0 Williams families were taxed

St. James’ District – Bennett Williams was taxed for 231 acres on Deep, 1 white poll and 0 black polls

Nash District – John Williams was taxed for 0 acres, 1 white poll and 0 black polls

Source:Caswell County NC Will Books 1777 – 1814, and 1814-1843 (Abstracts), 1784 Tax List, Guardian Records, etc… by Katherine Kerr Kendall (searchable online at ancestry.com); abstracted from the NC State Archives, Book C.R. 020.701.1, Compiled by Henry E. Kendall


The Regulator Movement

Last weekend I drove to Siler City, North Carolina to attend a lecture on The Regulator Movement of Chatham County, North Carolina, given by Mr. John H. Emerson. The lecture was sponsored by the Chatham County Historical Society and took place at the Rives Chapel Church in Siler City, North Carolina.  Tours of the church and the nearby Old Tick Creek cemetery, where the Regulator James Emerson was buried, were given prior to the lecture.  I did not make it to the church in time for the cemetery tour, however I made it inside the hall in time to get a good seat. I think attendance was higher than they expected because the organizers had to set up more chairs. The lecture itself ran for just about an hour. The Chatham County Historical Society had some books and pamphlets on a table at the back of the room that we could visit after the lecture. Another gentleman also had some weapons on display for us to look at.

The Regulator Movement is said to be the precursor and possibly even the first battle of the American Revolutionary War.  What started out as a peaceful movement enacted to change the policies governing land and property taxation and to rid the colony of corrupt politicans, ended in a gun fight at the Battle of Alamance Creek.

I decided to attend this lecture for a couple of reasons: My ancestor, Henry Williams, was living in nearby Caswell County, NC during this time (1766-1771) and was believed to have been in the Caswell County Militia. I think he may have had some involvement in the Regulator Movement. There’s been some confusion about his involvement in the Revolutionary War (see previous post here) and I was hoping to clear it up by learning about his possible role in the Regulator Movement.

I also wanted to have any excuse to drive out that way. Siler City is on the outskirts of Randolph County, North Carolina. My Godwin family settled in Randolph County in 1800 in the small community of Seagrove. Seagrove is about a 20 minute drive West of Siler City. A few weeks ago I took my first trip out to Randolph County to visit the Genealogy room in the Randolph County public library located in downtown Asheboro. You can read about my visit on my other blog here. I hope to make more trips out there to take in more of the scenery.

I did not learn any new information about my ancestor, Henry Williams, believed to have been an officer in the Revolutionary War.  There was a copy of William Powell’s book, The Regulators in North Carolina: A documentary history, 1759-1766 on one of the tables.  I did not find any mention of my ancestory, Henry Williams, in it. This was not surprising as I had already read much of the book in 2006 when I wrote a paper on the Regulator Movement for my North Carolina History Class.

A Mr. Brooks Gilbert opened up his family home, originally owned and  occupied by Isaac Brooks, also a Regulator, to the lecture attendees.  His home is located at 1958 Ike Brooks Rd, which was just a quick turn off of the Rives Chapel Church Road in Siler City. Isaac Brooks was a descendant of John and Susan Brooks, whose descendants meet every August in Siler City for a huge family reunion.  I have yet to find a connection between this Brooks family and my own of Caswell County, North Carolina, however I believe both families came from the same part of Virginia prior to their migration to North Carolina.  This Brooks family even has a highway named after them!  More to come about my visit to Isaac Brooks’ House.

Henry Williams – A Revolutionary War Soldier?

Many researchers of my Henry Williams have indicated that he was a Colonel in the Revolutionary War, citing page 71 of William S. Powell’s book When the Past Refused to Die: A History of Caswell County, North Carolina 1777-1977  (Durham, NC: Moore Publishing Company, 1977) as their source. This is the only source I can find indicating that Henry Williams was a soldier in the Revolutionary War.  I did not find a pension application for him or his widow or heirs in Heritage Quest’s Revolutionary War database.

Maybe Henry Williams was in the Caswell County militia and maybe he was active in that militia during the Regulator Movement (of which William S. Powell also wrote a book about – The regulators in North Carolina: a documentary history, 1759-1776).  However, I do not believe he saw duty during the Revolutionary War.  His brother, Colonel James Williams, was instrumental in the War.  He was living in the 96th District of South Carolina at the time.  In 1780, James Williams travelled to Caswell County, NC to visit his brother. It was there he wrote his will and transferred much of his property and possibly his slaves to his brother’s house for safe-keeping from the Tories. That Henry Williams was at home with his family, instead of away at war also indicates to me that he did not participate in the War.

After James’ death during the Battle of King’s Mountain in October 1780, Henry Williams, his brother and executor of his estate, reported an accounting of $25,000 that had been given to his brother, James Williams from the State of North Carolina to use to raise militia in Caswell County and surrounding counties to fight against the Tories. James’ son John Williams testified that this money was used to rally troops who were taken to King’s Mountain with him.  There is no mention of Henry Williams’ active participation in the rallying or marching of said troops. [Source: Graves, William T., James Williams: An American Patriot in the Carolina Backcountry, San Jose: Writers Club Press, 2002, p. 56]

The Author, William S. Powell, did not provide any sources or a bibliography to his book aforementioned. He did, however, note that all notes, chapter materials, and source material was given to the Gunn Memorial Library in Yanceyville, NC.  I therefore intend to visit this library and review his notes to see what source he used for his list of Caswell men who saw action in the Revolutionary War.


The Will of Daniel Williams, Granville Co., NC (1759)

Here is the will of Daniel Williams of Granville Co., NC. Daniel Williams was married to Ursula Henderson. They were the parents of my Henry Williams of Caswell Co., NC. I found two other Williams wills in Granville Co but I am not sure how they connect if at all to my Daniel Williams family. They are William Williams and Thomas Williams.

Williams, Daniel–wills to wife 3 negroes loaned to her for her lifetime, 12 cattle, one horse, feather bed and furniture, household goods, which I do not give away herafter, and at her death to be equally divided between my seven children: Merya Goodman, Henry Williams, John Williams, James Williams, Joseph Williams, Mary Mitchell, Daniel Williams; to my son-in-law Benjamin Goodman, 200 acres of landing being the land whereon he now lives at Capt. Mitchells line; to son John Williams, 350 acres which I purchased of Richard Bullock; to sons James and Joseph Williams, 800 acres of land in Halifax county, Virginia to be equally divided between them; to son Daniel Williams, 400 acres being land and plantation whereon I now live; to daughter Marya Goodman, for her lfietime, 3 negroes and, at her death, to go to her children; to son Henry Williams, 2 negroes and the use of a mullatto fellow to serve to age 21 years; to son John, 3 n3groes; to son James, 3 negroes; to daughter Mary Mitchell, 4 negroes; to son Daniel, 4 negroes; to my wife Ursula William, I lend for her lifetime 6 sheep, 12 hogs and, at her death, to be divided to my seven children; to my youngest children, James, Joseph, Mary Mitchell, and Daniel Williams, all rest of cattle, sheep, and hogs to divide between them; to son James, a horse and a feather bed and furniture; to son Joseph, a stallion, a feather bed and furniture; to daughter Mary Mitchell, a horse; to son Daniel Williams a horse and a mare, a feather bed and furniture; to son James Williams, land on Anderson swamp containing 400 acres; to son Joseph, land on Hico road and branches of Island creek—400 acres; my executors are to sell my crop of tobacco and pay my debts and to get 8000 ten penny nails and 8000 eight penny nails and give them to James and Joseph Williams and whereas Henry Williams and Marya Goodman have had pewter bought for them, it is my desire that John, James, Joseph, Mary Mitchell, and Daniel are to have pewter bought for them in equal amount by my executors and if any surplus from these sale, to be divided in eight parts for my wife and children; after wife’s death, all that is left to be divided to them.Exrs: my wife, Ursula Williams, John and James Williams

Wts: Luke Waldrup, William Sims

Source: Abstracts Of Granville County, NC, Unrecorded wills, 1746-1771, by Zae Gwynn
Page 64–Nov. 15, 1759–proved Dec. court 1759

The Will of William Williams, Granville Co., NC (1763)

Williams, William–wills to son Charles Williams 250 acres of land on south side of Tarr river, also my part of the wagon and the two horses belonging to the wagon, a feather bed and furniture; to son Stephen Williams, plantation whereon I now live containing the 143 acres on north side of Tarr river and a feather bed and furniture, a horse and my saddle; to daughter Lucy Pitman, wife of Samuel Pitman, 5 shillings; my wife Elizabeth to have use of plantation and dwelling house whereon I now live for as long as she is my widow or for life and at her death, the land to go to the aforesaid Stephen Williams; the movable property divided between Charles and Stephen Williams.

Exrs: my son Charles Williams and friend Francis Fowler

Wts: John Williams, John Morris

Source: Abstracts Of Granville County, NC, Unrecorded wills, 1746-1771, by Zae Gwynn
Page 66-April 3, 1763–proved Feb. 1765

Related posts:
Will of Daniel Williams, Granville Co., NC (1759)
Will of Thomas Williams, Granville Co., NC (1761)

The Will of Thomas Williams, Granville Co., NC (1761)

The Will of Thomas Williams, Granville Co., NC:

Wills to my wife and son Roger Williams, all estate with wife having use of same for the term of her widowhood or lifetime; to son Roger, a negro slave; to son Thomas, a negro slave and my mill and plantation ; to son William, a negro slave and upper part of my land divided between sons Thomas and William; to son Samuel, 2 negroes; I leave to wife and son Roger 100 pds. Virginia money to purchase 2 more negroes for her use during her widowhood and then, at her death, one of them to son Thomas and the other to son Roger Williams; to wife and son Roger all stock, household goods, etc., but if she remarry, then divided to my four children.

Exrs: my wife and my son Roger Williams

Wts: William Burrow, John Burch, Saml. Lancaster

 Source: Abstracts Of Granville County, NC, Unrecorded wills, 1746-1771, by Zae Gwynn
Page 65-Feb. 12, 1761–proved Aug. court 1761

Related posts:

Will of Daniel Williams, Granville Co., NC (1759)

Will of William Williams, Granville Co., NC (1763)

Caswell County, NC Land Grants – WILLIAMS

Henry Williams
File no. 1127, 100 acres, Entry no. 1184, entered 1 Nov 1780; Grant no. 1086, issued 27 Nov 1793; Book 81, p. 258; Located on Nats fork of Country Line Creek.

File no. 435, 700 acres, Entry no. 728, entered 17 Mar 1779; Grant no. 596, issued 13 Oct 1783; Book 53, p. 21, Located on the waters of Stony Creek.

File no. 37, 127 acres, Entry no. 65, entered 9 June 1778; Grant no. 37, issued 3 Mar 1779; Book 35, p. 37; Located on the waters of Stony Creek.

File no. 66, 216 acres, Entry no. 252, entered 4 Sept 1778; Grant no. 66, issued 3 Mar 1779; Book 35, p. 66; Located on some sm branches of Shaws, Toms, and Stoney Creek.

John Williams
File no. 383, 500 acres, Entry no. 249, entered 3 Sep 1778, grant no. 381, issued 29 Oct 1782; Book 43, p. 239; Located on the waters of Country line Creek and Horsley’s Creek

File no. 384, 243 acres, Entry no. 1183, entered 1 Nov 1780, Grant no. 382, issued 29 Oct 1782, Book no. 43, p. 240; Located on both sides of Harts Road

File no. 383, 200 acres, Entry no. 761, entered 23 Apr 1779, grant no. 413, issued 13 Oct 1783, book no. 54, p. 283, Located on Houseley’s Creek

File no. 579, 110 acres, Entry no. 820, entered 28 Jul 1779, grant no. 484, issued 13 Oct 1783, book no. 54, p. 311; Located on the waters of Hogans Creek

File no. 958, 222 acres, entry no. 819, entered 28 Jul 1779, grant no. 955, issued 18 Aug 1787; Book 68, p. 111, located on the head of Rockey Branch and waters of Stoney Creek

Nathan Williams
File no. 1192, 90 acres, Entry no. 1434, entered -, Grant no. 1154, issued 18 Dec 1799; Book 105, p. 270; Located on the waters of S. Fork of County Line.


Related Posts:

Land Grants for Caswell County, North Carolina BROOKS Families

Land Grants for Granville County, North Carolina Williams Families