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Full text of "Branchiana; being a partial account of the Branch family in Virginia"

CORNELL 

UNIVERSITY 

LIBRARY 



BOUGHT WITH THE INCOME 
OF THE SAGE ENDOWMENT 
FUND GIVEN IN 1891 BY 

HENRY WILLIAMS SAGE 



Cornell University Library 
CS71.B81 C11 1907 



Branchiana being a partial account of t 



olin 




3 1924 029 819 335 




Cornell University 
Library 



The original of this book is in 
the Cornell University Library. 

There are no known copyright restrictions in 
the United States on the use of the text. 



http://www.archive.org/details/cu31924029819335 



THIS EDITION OF BRANCHIANA IS LIMITED 
TO ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY-SEVEN 
COPIES, OF WHICH THIS COPY IS NUMBER 



yJt*//VXCS £ *( OJV^t-W V_W.\>tt-\\ 



Branchiana 



BEING A PARTIAL ACCOUNT OF 



The Branch Family in Virginia 



BY 
JAMES BRANCH CABELL 

"Hcec est 
Vita solutorum misera ambitione gravique.' 



+ 



Printed by 

WHITTET & SHEPPERSON, 

Richmond, "Va. 

HS 



Co 

3Tofm ^atteson $rantfi 

AC &ifi toolume ui toirh a trouble fitness bebicateb, as being bocb 

tjit first to Suggest its compilation anb tfie moat 

eminent lining member of the family 

tofticb it commemorates. 



Contents; 



Page 

The Compiler's Foreword 5 

The Branches in Europe and in New England 13 

The Descent of Thomas Branch of Petersburg and 

Richmond 23 

The Descendants of Thomas Branch of Petersburg and 

Richmond 59 

The Wife of Christopher Branch of Kingsland 103 

The Wife of Christopher Branch of Charles City . . . 107 

The Wife of Benjamin Branch of Henrico 111 

The Wife of Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield 129 

The Wife of Captain Benjamin Branch of Willow Hill . 145 

The Wife of Thomas Branch of Willow Hill 149 

The First Wife of Thomas Branch of Petersburg and 

Richmond 157 

The Second Wife of Thomas Branch of Petersburg and 

Richmond 173 



illustrations; 



thomas branch Frontispiece 

james read branch Facing p. 18 



JAMES RANSOM BRANCH . . . 
JAMES ROBINSON BRANCH . . 
JOHN PATTF.SON BRANCH . . . 

THOMAS BRANCH 

THOMAS PLUMMER BRANCH . . 
WILLIAM ADDISON BRANCH . . 
MELVILLE IF BY BRANCH . . . 
CARTER WHEELRIGHT BRANCH , 



36 

54 

70 

88 

114 

132 

152 

168 



Copyright, 1907, by James Branch Cabell. 

All rights reserved. 

Published October, 1907. 



Cije Compiler's! jforetoorb 



tKfje Compiler'* Jf oretoorb 

" Sur les tumbeaulx de mes ancestres, 
Les ames desquelx Dieu embrasse, 
On n'y voyt couronnes ne sceptres." 

It has appeared expedient that these gleanings from the 
county records of Henrico and Chesterfield, and from 
certain other sources, be put into some accessible shape, 
since, though at odd times during the last twenty years 
there has been published concerning the Branch family 
of Virginia a variety of information, the information has 
in most instances been incorrect. 

Now, the persons the compiler treats of have been dead 
for many decades ; and it may safely be assumed of any 
of us that, once dead, we are, and of necessity, condemned 
to an eternal misrepresentation 1 , whether it be in the de- 
traction of our enemies that the lie endure or in the pane- 
gyrics of our epitaphs. Yet the fiction, if it aim toward 
the neighborhood of plausibility, should very rarely con- 
descend to brutal fisticuffs with an established fact, since 
the latter is proverbially stubborn; and in this instance 
the records of Henrico and of Chesterfield still exist, and 
are approachable by all men. 

These records form the basis of this compilation, which 
endeavors but .to make clear the direct ancestry of Thomas 
Branch of Petersburg and Richmond — born 23d Decem- 
ber, 1802, died 15th November, 1888 — and of his two 
wives. 



8 BRANCHIANA 

For the little book has no pretensions to be considered 
as a history of the Branches. Among the many and de- 
vious ramifications of an unusually prolific family a single 
line of descent is herein traced out, and quite stolidly; 
since the compilation, as you are to remember, grasps 
neither at a compelling grace of language or at any origi- 
nality of trope. Such-an-one committed such-and-such 
an action on a specified date, and the event was sworn to 
by So-and-so, and afterward was duly recorded at this- 
or-that place; and it is the compiler's business simply to 
write down the fact without metaphor: and there on a 
pin-point you have the scheme of the ensuing volume. 

Within judicious limits, however, the compiler has not 
denied himself the privilege of attempting to deduce from 
the established fact each and every circumstance that 
would in common reason accompany it. This is not, per- 
haps, the ordinary custom of genealogists; but as it 
chances the compiler is not by avocation a genealogist, 
and in consequence has aimed less at the construction of 
a historical romance than at a faithful transcription, and 
at times a re-arrangement, of certain musty items from 
quite uninteresting wills, and deeds of gift, and transfers 
of land, and many similar abominations of an equal dreari- 
ness. 

And for this same reason the Branch pedigree is un- 
adorned by even a solitary potentate. The compiler might 
more gorgeously have informed you, say! that a certain 
female ancestor of Christopher Branch of " Kingsland," 
was supposedly a person whom the Ruler of Somewhere, 



BRANCHIANA 9 

for reasons unstated, and discreetly so, delighted to 
honor; or have dwelt with heavier emphasis upon the 
fact that a certain male progenitor of his "came over," as 
the phrase runs, with William the Conqueror. 

For such is the pleasing and the inexpensive custom 
of all genealogists: whereas, contrariwise, the present 
copyist confesses, with appropriate humility, that the 
Branches of Virginia trace back an established lineage to 
not a single Scandinavian pirate, and no lineage at all to 
any lady who, in her be-sonneted heyday, was proven very 
compassionate to the pangs of amorous royalty. Shuffle 
over it as you may, the authentic forebearer of this family 
was merely an honest and God-fearing yeoman whose 
reputation is not attestedly enhanced by even the tiniest 
infraction of the Decalogue. 

It is undeniable, however, that the progenitors of this 
same yeoman sprang of an ancient and a not uninteresting 
origin ; and certain by-ends of mythology have, in conse- 
quence, been lightly touched upon. But to the compiler, 
at least, these traditions appear of very minor importance. 

For, grant that Christopher Branch of " Kingsland " 
was, even as legend claims, a lineal descendant of Caius 
Licirrius Stolo, and that within his more immediate ances- 
try one might enumerate, "by scores half-emperors and 
quarter-emperors," and a dozen or two of kings let us say, 
and an infinity of dukes — enumerate, in fine, just such a 
list as all genealogists so heartily love to catalogue. Grant 
this, and the stark fact remains that he shared any one of 
these honors with an odd million or so of his contem- 



io BRANCHIANA 

poraries, ranging say! from pickpockets to the most 
august of the period 1 ; so that, as it concerned the terres- 
trial circumstances of Christopher Branch of " Kings- 
land," the thing was wholly immaterial, either one way 
or another ; — and the considerate person will come a deal 
nearer to the marrow of the man by reflecting that at his 
death his library consisted of two Bibles, and both of 
tfhem the worse for constant usage. 

Yet, doubtless, the romantic can derive a thrill of gen- 
uine pleasure from the reflection that, to however infini- 
tesimal a degree, they share the blood of this-or-that more 
sumptuous individual of antiquity; as to the romantic it 
will doubtless be apparent that the trivial doings of cer- 
tain thrifty and industrious planters some centuries or 
more ago are scarcely worthy of perpetuation. 

But [there are two ends to every stick. It was the Vir- 
ginian Branches, and their like, who converted a wilder- 
ness, a little by a little, into the America of to-day; and 
their task was tediously achieved, and without ostentation, 
and always the ship had its resplendent figure-head, as 
always it had its hidden, nay ! the grimy, engines, which 
propelled the ship. And, however much America may 
differ from Utopia, to have assisted in the making of 
America is no mean distinction. 

To be descended of a line of czars, or from a house of 
emperors, is, at the worst, an empty braggartism, or, at 
most — upon the plea of heredity — a handy palliation for 
iniquity ; and to be descended of sturdy and 'honest and 
clean-blooded folk is preferable, perhaps, since, upon quite 



BRANCHIANA n 

similar grounds, it entitles one to hope that even now, 
" when their generation is gone, when their play is over, 
when their panorama is withdrawn in tatters from the 
stage of the world," there may yet survive of them " some 
few actions worth remembering, and a few children who 
have retained some happy stamp from the disposition of 
their parents." 

August, 1906. 



Ws>t Prandje* in €urope anb in Jleto 
Cnglanti 



Wt)t Pranctjesi in €urope anb in Heto 
€nglanti 

More immediately the Branch family is of Norman 
origin, the first mention of the name in written history, so 
far as is now known, occurring in the Chronicle of John 
Brompton (who flourished circa 1118), in a list wherein 
he enumerates 

" Les nons de grauntz dela la mer, 
Qe vindrent od le conquerour, 
William Bastard de graunt vigoure," — 

as he terms them. 

Or, in other wording : " The names of the great men 
who crossed the sea with the conqueror, William the Vig- 
orous." Brompton gives but the surnames, for a cogent 
reason which he states; and they are so arranged as to 
assist the memory of the reader alike by rhyme and 
rhyomth and alliteration. 

So that, beginning with 

Maundevyle et Daundevyle, 
Ounfravyle et Downfrevyle, 



Brompton comes presently to 



Morten et Mortimer, 
BRAUNZ et Columber. 



16 BRANCHIANA 

And, true, 'the spelling of the family name is here none 
too accurate : but Brampton was merely transcribing from 
a list compiled some years before his birth, and, as by 
good luck it chances, many lists of the same sort have 
been preserved even to our time in the archives of several 
churches, written upon great pages of vellum, and deco- 
rated with the title of The Book of the Conquerors. 

And in such lists — the sources of the Brompton list — 
as they have been published by Andre Duchesne (and by 
others) from the various charters and so on now in Battle 
Abbey, you will find that the name is invariably spelt as 
Brauncbe. 

Wf)t JLitinian Jfamilp 

The surname of the Branch family is thus easily traced 
back to the eleventh century; but legend claims for the 
Branches a far greater antiquity, and at least attempts 
to identify them with the Licinian family of old Rome. 

For within " that immense register where Pliny has 
deposited the discoveries, the arts and the errors of man- 
kind " — as, it may be, that in this connection Gibbon not 
unappositely terms the Naturalis Historia — one may read 
(in Book XVII., Chapter i.), how "the trees have fur- 
nished surnames also to the ancients, such, for instance, as 
that .... of Stolo to the Licinian family, such being the 
name given by us to the useless suckers that shoot from 
trees ; for the best method of clearing away these shoots 
was discovered by the first Stolo, and hence his name." 

And legend claims that the Licinian family, in conse- 



BRANCHIANA 17 

quence, adopted as its insignia a green branch, and that 
from this same emblem its descendants have always taken 
their surname: thus in France their name was Branche; 
and in Spain and Italy, Branca; and in Normandy, 
Braunche ; and, presently, in England, Branch. 

Caius liciniug g>tolo 

Here were indeed an ancient ancestry were the claims 
of legend a shade more authentically buttressed ; for the 
first member of the Licinian family to attain any par- 
ticular prominence, so far at least as the knowledge of 
the compiler extends, was that 

Caius Licinius Stolo, who, in 367 B. C, as tribune 
(compare Livy VI., 35, 42, as well as other annalists), 
drew up and proclaimed the celebrated Licinian roga- 
tions, which in reality converted Rome from an oligarchy 
into a republic. 

Qftje Cmperor Hicmiug 

And by an odd turn of fate, so distinguished did his 
race afterward become that, in 307, a Roman emperor — 
and the incarnation of despotism — made it his proudest 
boast to be a descendant of this same tribune. It is true 
that the boast now appears to have been but a vainglorious 
fiction, and the 

Emperor Licinius, in fact, to have sprung from some 
obscure and Dacian origin ; yet none the less is it worthy 
of remark that relationship with the Licinian family was 
then an honor which a master of half Europe might see 
fit to covet. 



18 BRANCHIANA 

tBfjt prancf) Surname 

The preceding legends are but legends, and they are 
given but as legends; still, however improbable it may 
appear that any family should adopt thisor-that emblem 
as its badge, and subsequently from that same emblem 
derive and preserve its permanent name, it must be re- 
membered that in actuality the thing has been done more 
than onoe. 

The' family aforetime regnant in England that as 
Counts of Anjou had adopted for their device a sprig of 
broom — the planta genesta — and were in consequence 
henceforward known as the Plantagenets — here, of 
course, is a very clamant instance of this: and, indeed, 
hundreds of other cases might readily be cited; so that, 
all in all, it is a deal more easy to shrug aside the Licinian 
origin of the Branches than it is to disprove it. 

aflfje Prancfi &rmg 

And with all this, the present compiler has, in reality, 
very little to do. He attempts but to record the fortunes 
of the Branches in Virginia. Yet, in passing, it is not to 
be supposed that when such defensive armor came into 
use that the features of every second person were screened 
by a visor, and in consequence unrecognizable — that, at 
this time above all others, the insignia of any family might 
lightly be disregarded. 

Here was the origin — and the very practical origin — of 
all latter-day heraldic vanities ; since, as Clark points out, 
" though now matters of form and ceremonial, and sub- 




A^Jt^CL-^^_ 



BRANCHIANA 19 

ject to the smile which attaches to such in an utilitarian 
age, armorial bearings were then of real use and impor- 
tance, and so continued as long as knights were cased in 
plate and their features thus concealed. At that time 
leaders were recognized in the field by their insignia 
alone" — and so on. The insignia of the Branches, how- 
ever anciently chosen, would have been, in consequence, 
quite naturally adopted as a conspicuous part of the design 
when this family came to plan its arms. 

The arms of the Branch family, as its descendants bear 
them to-day, are: — Argent, a lion rampant gules, op- 
pressed by a bend dexter sable. Crest : — Out of a ducal 
coronet or, a cock's head proper, in its beak a branch 
vert, — or in other wording, the "green branch" of the 
Licinian family. The arms have no motto. 

But a variant, and, as it appears to the compiler, a more 
ancient and the correct form of these arms is : — Argent, a 
lion rampant gules, armed azure, oppressed with a bend 
sable. Crest : — Out of a ducal coronet or, a cock's head 
azure, combed gules, holding a branch vert. These arms, 
also, have no motto. 

They were assumed in the latter half of the twelfth 
century by the descendants of that Braunche who, with 
William the Conqueror, both invaded and overcame 
England in 1066. 

And, true, in any blazonry of the arms, "the branch 
vert " appears to form but a minor part of the design ; 
yet it should be remembered that this crest originally was 
the ornament borne by the armed warrior upon bis helmet, 



20 BRANCHIANA 

and hence in battle conspicuous from a far greater dis- 
tance than the arms proper -which were painted upon his 

shield. 

W&t prancfceg in Cnglanb 

With the history of the Branch family in England the 
compiler has at the present moment no concern ; yet, in 
passing, it is as well to mention that in England the 
Branches first settled in Wiltshire, and more lately, as it 
would appear, removed to the County of Kent. 

Tradition states that the great-grandfather of the 
Branch who emigrated to Virginia was none other than 
the 

Sir John Branch, who circa 1485, was Lord Mayor 
of London ; and that a son of this same Sir John Branch 
was the 

William Branch, sometimes known as William 
Flower, one of the most notorious of the Protestant suf- 
ferers during the reign of Mary I. 

He had formerly been a monk at Ely, but had abjured 
the Roman Catholic religion to become a too-zealous 
Protestant; and on Easter Day, 1555, at St. Margaret's, 
Westminster, during the actual celebration of the Holy 
Communion, William Branch attacked and stabbed t)he 
officiating priest, although not mortally. 

He was brought before Edmund Bonner, then Bishop 
of London, who argued with him for a long while on re- 
ligious matters, and eventually offered him a pardon on 
condition that he recant his Protestant opinions and con- 
form to the Church of Rome. 



BRANCHIANA 21 

William Branch refused ; and in consequence, the hand 
■which had committed the crime having first been severed 
from his wrist, he was chained to a stake before St. Mar- 
garet's Chapel, which was the scene of the atrocity, and 
there burned alive. 

This person, according to tradition, was, by his son, 
John Branch, a grandfather of the Peter Branch who 
emigrated to the Colony of Massachusetts in 1638, and, 
by his son, Thomas Branch, a grandfather of the Chris- 
topher Branch who emigrated to the Colony of Virginia 
in the March of 1619-20. 

It is from the latter two that the Branches of New Eng- 
land and the Branches of Virginia trace their descent. 

QTfje jJBranrfjes tit Jleto Cnglant) 

The aforementioned Peter Branch sailed for Massa- 
chusetts in the Castle, as previously recorded, in the year 
1638, and died during the voyage. His will, made in 
favor of his only son, John Branch, was the first will 
to be recorded at Boston. 

This same John Branch, the only son of the foregoing, 
more lately married Mary Speed, and more lately still 
settled at Branch Island, which lies some ten miles north 
of Plymouth Rock, and as yet retains its ancient name. 

From this John Branch descend the Branches of New 
England. 



Cfje descent of tEfjomag ^rantfj of $eter*= 
ourg anb &tcfjmono 



Wsyt Be&ent of Qftjomafii Pram!) of $etersi- 
burg ano &tcf)mona 

Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond, in 
Virginia, was a descendant, in the seventh generation, of 

Christopher Branch of "Arrowhattocks" and 
"Kingsland," — the latter being, according to tradition, a 
son of that 

Thomas Branch who was a son of 

William Branch, the Protestant fanatic, who was, 
in turn, a son of the 

Sir John Branch that was {circa 1485) Lord Mayor 
of London. 

And here we have the faery land of tradition, and 
henceforward build upon the less livelily^tinted founda- 
tion of the county records of Henrico and of Chesterfield. 

C&rfetopfjer Prancfj of lUngslanli 

Christopher Branch of "Arrowhattocks" and 
"Kingsland," in Henrico County, the founder of the 
Branch family in Virginia, was born in England — and, 
presumably, within the County of Kent — about the year 
1600 ; and he married there very early in life. 

With his wife, Mary Brandh, whose maiden name is 
unknown, he emigrated to Virginia in the March of 
1619-20, so that in the February of 1623-4, according to 



26 BRANCHIANA 

the first census ever taken of the inhabitants of Virginia, 
Christopher Branch was living in Henrico ; and the mus- 
ter of January, 1624-5, names Christopher Branch, his 
wife, Mary Branch, and their son, Thomas Branch, then 
nine months old, as resident "att ye Colledg Land." 

They had come to Virginia in the London Merchant, 
of 300 tons, which vessel was despatched from Tilbury- 
hope, in England, by the Virginia Company, in the March 
of 1619-20, with 200 colonists on board, and reached Vir- 
ginia some time during the spring of the same year, after 
a prosperous voyage, during which but one passenger 
had died. 

The precise location of the Branch home at this period 
is indeterminate, as the College Land was a rather exten- 
sive tract set aside by the company, whereon " to erect 
and build a college in Virginia, for the training and bring- 
ing up of infidel's children to the true knowledge of God 
and understanding of righteousness." 

The company designed, in fact, both to Christianize and 
educate the neighboring Indians; and to this intent it 
was decided (26th May, 1619), that "a certain piece of 
land be laid out in Henrico, which should be called the 
College Land, and for the planting of the same to send 
presently fifty good persons to be seated thereon, and to 
occupy the same according to order, and to have half the 
benefit of their labour, and the other half to go to setting 
forward the work and for maintenance of the tutors and 
scholars." 

The scheme, at first enthusiastically taken up by the 



BRANCHIANA 27 

King and " the several bishops of this kingdom," was 
abandoned after the Great Massacre of 1622, when the 
Indians, under Opechancanough, very nearly succeeded 
in exterminating the Colony, and the assigned lands were 
thrown open to the public; but it was as one of these 
" fifty good persons " that Christopher Branch came to 
America, and he and his wife were among the scant sixty 
settlers of the College Land who, somehow, survived the 
massacre; and their oldest son was born upon the heels 
of it. 

It was ten years before Christopher Branch — on the 
20th October, 1634 — patented a hundred acres of land at 
"Arrowhattocks," in Henrico County, which then com- 
prised the present Chesterfield. This "Arrowhattocks " 
appears in Captain John Smith's map on the north side 
of James River, a short distance above the present Dutch 
Gap; but the eventual and permanent home of Christo- 
pher Branch was at " Kingsland," a plantation almost 
immediately opposite "Arrowhattocks," on the south side 
of the river, in what is now the County of Chesterfield, 
where, on the 14th of September, 1636, he patented 
another hundred acres of land. 

A successful tobacco farmer, he subsequently aug- 
mented this modest tract both by purchase and by the 
taking out of other patents, until he had acquired a rather 
large plantation in the extreme northeast of Chesterfield, 
bounded upon the east by James River and upon the south 
by Proctor's Creek. The present Kingsland Creek ran 



28 BRANCHIANA 

through his property and takes its name from the former 
home of Christopher Branch. 

He must have come to Virginia very little better than 
a pauper; but that he subsequently became a man of 
means, as means then went, and of prominence in at least 
his county, is evinced by the frequency with which his 
name occurs in the scant records of the time and the many 
honorable offices which he occupied. 

He was, in 1639, to cite an instance, with his immediate 
neighbor, Captain Thomas Osborne of " Coxendale," 
one of the viewers of tobacco " from the World's End to 
Henrico," — it having been decided by an act of the As- 
sembly that "there be yearly chosen and appointed Men 
of Experience and in dignity for the Carefull Viewing of 
each Man's crop of Tobacco" ; and he had represented his 
county in the Virginia House of Burgesses in the year 
1629; and was in 1656 appointed one of the justices of 
the peace for Henrico. 

A glance at the various land patents taken out by Chris- 
topher Branch is not without interest. 

On the 20th of October, 1634, as recorded, Christopher 
Branch — then of "Arrowhattocks" — leased a hundred 
acres of land "adjoining the land granted to John Griffin 
and John Sheffield, and abutting easterly on the main 
river." 

On the 8th of December, 1636, Christopher Branch 
patented 250 acres " at 'Kingsland,' bounded on the east 
by the Main river and westerly by the Second creek," — 
this being the land formerly " granted to John Griffin, 



BRANCHIANA 29 

fifty acres for his personal adventure, and 200 for the 
transportation of four persons." It is interesting to note 
that within the year Christopher Branch has in some inex- 
plicable fashion acquired and annexed all of his immediate 
neighbor's land. 

Again, on the 14th of September, 1636, as recorded, 
Christopher Branch patented a hundred acres " in Hen- 
rico County, bounded on the east by the river, over against 
' Harrow Attacks,' and on the west by the head of Proc- 
tors' Creek. Due: by exchange with James Place, and 
due Place for the transportation of two servants, Richard 
Pierce and James Hunt." 

This looks as though Christopher Branch had traded 
his hundred acres at "Arrowhattocks" for an additional 
hundred at " Kingsland," and had finally cast his destiny 
upon the south side of the river ; and there is no further 
definite record after this date of his ever owning property 
upon the northern side of the James. This patent, by 
the way, was subsequently renewed by Sir John Harvey, 
when Governor of Virginia, and 300 acres added. 

It is thus fairly apparent that Christopher Branch met 
with good luck in his Virginian venture, and achieved 
success and prominence; but it is unlikely that his life 
was ever one of luxury. Indeed, it is salutary, in passing, 
to consider the then condition of Virginia, as recorded 
by an eye-witness: 

" I found the plantations generally seated upon meer 
salt marshes, full of infectious boggs and muddy creeks 
and lakes, and hereby subjected to all those inconveniences 



30 BRANCHIANA 

and diseases which are so commonly found in the most 
unsound and most unhealthy parts of England 

" The Colony was this winter in much distress of vic- 
tual. . . . 

" Their houses are generally the worst that ever I saw, 
the meanest cottages in England being every way equal 
(if not superior) with the most of the best, and, besides, 
so improvidently and scatteringly are they seated one 
from another, as partly from their distance, but especially 
by the interposition of creeks and swamps, as they call 
them, they offer all advantages to their savage enemies, 
and are utterly deprived of all sudden recollection of 
themselves upon any terms whatsoever 

"I found the ancient plantations of Henrico and Charles 
City wholly quitted and left to the spoils of the Indians, 
who not only burnt the houses, said to be once the best 
of all others, but fell upon the poultry, hogs, cows, goats 
and horses, whereof they killed great numbers. . . . 

" There having been, as it is thought, not fewer than 
ten thousand souls transported hither, there are not, 
thro' the aforementioned abuses and neglects, above 
two thousand of them to be found alive at this present — 
many of them in a sickly and desperate estate." 

In such unenviable circumstances Christopher Branch 
lived for sixty years, dying at a very advanced age either 
in the December of 1681 or in the January of 1682. 

Immediately previous to his death (2nd November, 
1 681 ) , he had confirmed a former deed of gift to his eldest 
son, Thomas Branch, of 300 acres of land in Henrico, 



BRANCHIANA 31 

" which Thomas Branch now lives on," the action being 
necessitated by some irregularity in the earlier deed. This 
land faced upon James River, and adjoined the land of 
John Branch — presumably the same John Branch who 
was the youngest son of William Branch. 

It should be borne in mind, however, that Christopher 
Branch of "Arrowhattocks" and "Kingsland" was not 
the only Branch who emigrated to Virginia. There was 
a John Branch who owned land in Elizabeth City County 
as early as 1636, was a viewer of tobacco for Elizabeth 
City in 1639, and represented Elizabeth City in the Vir- 
ginia Assembly in 1641 ; but who was apparently unre- 
lated to Christopher Branch of " Kingsland," and, so far 
as is recorded, left no descendants. 

Christopher Branch married, as has been said, Mary 

, who died at an early age — apparently before 

1630. 

By Mary , Christopher Branch of "Kingsland" 

had issue : 

1. Thomas Branch of Henrico, the oldest son, born 
April, 1623, and the only child to survive his father. 
Thomas Branch died in 1693. He had married Eliza- 
beth , and by her had issue: — Thomas, who mar- 
ried Elizabeth Archer, daughter of George Archer of 

Henrico, and died in 1728 ; Matthew, who married , 

and died in 1726; James, who died without issue in 1737; 
Elizabeth, who married Melchizadeck Richardson; Mar- 
tha; a daughter, name unknown, who married Richard 
Ward of Henrico ; William ; Margery ; and John. 



32 BRANCHIANA 

II. William Branch of Henrico, born about 1625, 
presumably the second son, and presumably a namesake 
of the Protestant fanatic, who died in 1676. William 

Branch married Jane (she married, second, Abel 

Gower, in his time justice of the peace and sheriff for 
Henrico), and by her had issue: — William, who died 
young, post 1678, and without leaving issue; John, died 
in 1788, who married Martha Jones, the daughter of 
Thomas Jones of Bermuda Hundreds ; Sarah ; and Mary, 
who married, first, Thomas Jefferson of Henrico (grand- 
father of the President), and, second, Joseph Mattox. 

III. Christopher Branch of Charles City County, 
born about 1627. 

Christopher Branch of "Kingsland" died, as has been 
said, between the 1st of December, 1681, and 1st of Feb- 
ruary, 1681-2. 

An inventory of his goods and chattels, too long to be 
here cited, was recorded 13th of April, 1682, and vividly 
illustrates how solely was the wealth of Virginia's earlier 
inhabitants confined to the possession of lands and of 
slaves, and of so many pounds of tobacco, since their 
total value, as fixed by the appraisers, is no more than 
thirty-eight pounds, seven shillings and ten pence. It 
should be remembered, however, that the purchasing 
power of money was then, roughly speaking, about nine 
times that of the present day. 

There are no luxuries in this enumeration ; it contains, 
for the most part, only the bare necessities of life; and 
the library of Christopher Branch consisted of three vol- 



BRANCHIANA 33 

umes, one of which, having an undecipherable title, he 
bequeathed to his oldest and only living son, Thomas 
Branch ; and for the rest Christopher Branch possessed : 

" One old Bible, valued at 5 shillings. 

" One old ditto, valued at 5 shillings." 

And here is his modest list of live stock: 

" 3 cows, valued at 35 shillings each. 

" ij Oxen, one 2 years old, 5 shillings ; and one 5 years 
old at 30 shillings. 

" 2 bulls, one 2 years old at 15 shillings, and the other 
6 years old at 25 shillings. 

" 1 yearling calfe. 

" 5 barrowes (gelded pigs), at 15 shillings each. 

" 4 sowes, at 15 shillings each. 

" 2 shootes (shoats), at 6 shillings each. 

" 1 boar, valued at 6 shillings. 

" 1 parcel of pyggs, to be divided amongst themselves." 

The will of Christopher Branch is recorded at Henrico 
Court-House. It is dated 20th June, 1678, and was re- 
corded 20th February, 1681-2. 

Previous to the making of this will, he had conveyed 
to his son, Thomas Branch, by various deeds of gift, the 
entire northern portion of the " Kingsland " plantation, 
consisting of at least 540 acres, and probably of more; 
and it is not an outrageous flight of fancy to presume that 
the second son, William Branch, had been provided for in 
similar fashion, since the will ignores the heirs of this 
William Branch precisely as Thomas Branch and his heirs 
are therein ignored. 



34 BRANCHIANA 

It is possible that to William Branch was allotted the 
"Arrowhattocks" plantation on the north side of the river, 
inasmuch as the will makes no mention of this property, 
which Christopher Branch had unquestionably owned and 
had unquestionably parted with by the year 1678; but as 
has been recorded, the lease of 14th September, 1636, 
would seem to indicate that he had made over at least a 
portion of "Arrowhattocks" to James Place of Henrico, 
in exchange for an additional hundred acres at " Kings- 
land." 

By ordinary, it was the custom of our early colonists 
thus to provide for their sons as they reached manhood; 
and it is deducible that Christopher Branch of " Kings- 
land," cannily desirous that as little as possible of his 
estate be squandered upon taxes, had in his lifetime 
deeded to his elder sons and to their heirs such lands as 
he intended to leave them. But his youngest son, Christo- 
pher Branch of Charles City County, had died young, 
leaving three boys, all under age when Christopher 
Branch of " Kingsland " drew up his will ; and it is for 
them, and for them alone, that the will of their grand- 
father provides. 

Thus to his eldest son, Thomas Branch, the testator be- 
queaths merely " my great copper ceattle," and the book 
whose title is undecipherable, and explicitly confirms a 
previous deed of gift of some 240 acres : and to William 
Branch and to John Branch (the children of the testator's 
second son, William Branch), merely the liberty to "fish 
and fowle" in all the creeks and swamps of his big plan- 
tation. 



BRANCHIANA 35 

To the testator's grandson, Christopher Branch (the 
oldest child of the testator's son, Christopher Branch of 
Charles City County, and then nineteen years old), is left 
all the land between James River and the Long Slash — 
and "slash" here denotes a low and wet and overgrown 
piece of ground — beginning at the mouth of Proctor's 
Creek and "running upwards on the river to the pinetree 
that parts my land and my son Thomas's, and from Proc- 
tor's Creek at the lower end of the Long Slash, on the 
inside of the Long Slash, running up to my son Thomas's 
land." In other words, after deeding the northern por- 
tion to Thomas Branch, the testator bequeaths to his 
grandson, Christopher Branch, the eastern third of the 
remainder of his " Kingsland " plantation. 

There is, however, a condition stipulated, " provided the 
said Christopher Branch help to build for his brother 
Samuel Branch a house four lengths of boards, every 
length to be five feet, with the help of the negroe and 
Joab, if they live till Samuel Branch be of ability to keep 
it, and help him to clear a cornfield sufficiently fenced to 
keep out hoggs and cattle." 

For to the testator's grandson, Samuel Branch, then 
fifteen years old, is bequeathed the second third of 
" Kingsland," " all land between the Long Slash and the 
bottom called by the name of Jackes Bottome, beginning 
at Proctor's Creek and running up to Thomas Branch's 
land; provided that the said Samuel Branch, with the 
help of Christopher Branch and the negro and Jobe, build 
for Benjamin Branch a house," — and so on, according to 



36 BRANCHIANA 

all the specifications of the house to be built for Samuel 
Branch when he shall come to years of discretion. 

For to the youngest grandson, Benjamin Branch, then 
thirteen years old, is bequeathed the remaining third of 
" Kingsland,"— "all the land between Jackes Bottome and 
Proctor's Creek, beginning at Proctor's Creek and run- 
ning up to my son Thomas's land." 

It is also stipulated, with meticulous forethought, that 
when the two houses come to be built, Christopher Branch 
is to supply both Samuel Branch and Benjamin Branch 
with "six locus (locust) posts and two im (elm?) posts," 
in event of the lands assigned to either containing none at 
the time of building; and, curiously enough, that if any 
of the three die under age his lands and property are to 
go to "the next brother." 

This apparently unfair arrangement is perhaps ex- 
plained by the fact that Christopher Branch is to have 
for some years the use of the entire estate : for the testator 
appoints him general manager of " Kingsland " as a 
whole, and it is to young Christopher Branch that Thomas 
Branch is to pay such rent for the recently deeded 240 
acres "as may be due his Majesty yearly," as well as to 
Christopher Branch that Samuel Branch and Benjamin 
Branch are to deliver their annual rental when these two 
acquire their several portions of "Kingsland"; and it is 
stipulated that the latter grandsons are to live with Chris- 
topher Branch, and under his guardianship, until "they 
are grown and able to get their land." 




En.e J b r CBHe.ll.iry~ 




BRANCHIANA 37 

Item, " my part of Jobe's labor (the negro previously 
mentioned), which is one-half his labor, is to go to the 
maintenance of Benjamin Branch and Samuel Branch and 
Sarah Branch." This Sarah Branch, as has been said, was 
the younger daughter of the testator's second son. 

It is then stipulated that a certain " cartway to the 
woods " running through the plantation of " Kingsland " 
be always free to the public; and more lately, by an 
obvious afterthought, that if either Christopher Branch or 
Samuel Branch, for any reason, refuse to take part in 
building the stipulated houses, and so on, the delinquent 
is to pay 600 pounds of tobacco to the brother he has de- 
clined to start in life. 

Finally, to Thomas Jefferson of Henrico (who had 
married, ante 1678, Mary Branch, the older daughter of 
the testator's second son, and was by her the grandfather 
of the President), is left one hogshead of tobacco, of 400 
pounds weight, inasmuch as the said Thomas Jefferson is 
to be, with the younger Christopher Branch, the testator's 
executor; and all other property of which the testator 
may die possessed is to be divided equally among Chris- 
topher Branch and Samuel Branch and Benjamin Branch 
and Sarah Branch. 

The witnesses of this will are Abel Gower (who had 
married the widow of William Branch, the testator's 
second son), and Richard Ward (who had married a 
daughter of Thomas Branch, the testator's oldest son). 



38 BRANCHIANA 



Cfcrfetopfcer Prancfj of Cfcartes: Citp 

Christopher Branch of Charles City County, the 
third and youngest son oi the foregoing, was born about 
the year 1627. 

On reaching manhood he removed from Henrico to 
Charles City, where he resided for some twenty years. 

Owing to the destruction of the earlier records of 
Charles City, our knowledge of this Christopher Branch 
is woefully deficient. It is apparent, however, that he 
married early in life, and it is no mean tribute to his 
ability and his ranking in public opinion that at the age of 
thirty, at most, he should have been a justice of the peace 
for his county — to which office Christopher Branch was 
appointed in the year 1657. 

Christopher Branch of Charles City died in 1665, some 
fifteen years before his father's demise. 

The name of his wife is unknown, as well as the total 
number of children she bore him. Yet it is presumable 
that there were but three, the three sons, who, after the 
death of their father, were entrusted to the guardianship 
of their grandfather, Christopher Branch of " Kings- 
land," and for whom the latter, as previously recorded, 
makes liberal provision in his will. 

These children were: 

I. Christopher Branch of Henrico, born 1659, died 
1727, who married Anne Sherman Crowley (the widow 
of John Crowley of Henrico, and the daughter of Henry 



BRANCHIANA 39 

Sherman of Henrico), and by her had issue: — Henry; 

Mary, who married Walter ; Sissarah, who married 

Bass ; and Bodiane, who married - Cheatham. 

II. Samuel Branch of Henrico, born 1663, died 
1700, who married Ursula , and by her had issue. 

III. Benjamin Branch of Henrico, born in 1665. 

The will of Christopher Branch of Charles City County, 
if indeed he did. not die intestate — which was a rare event 
among our careful colonists of Virginia — perished with 
the remainder of the Charles City records, so that we have 
to-day no certain knowledge either as to the exact locality 
of his plantation or the disposition which he made of it. 

Penfamitt prancf) of Henrico 

Benjamin Branch of Henrico, the third and youngest 
son of the foregoing, was born in 1665, which was, as has 
been previously recorded, the year of his father's death. 

It is probable that his mother also did not long survive 
the birth of this third son ; the three boys were unques- 
tionably orphaned during the infancy of Benjamin Branch 
and left with no nearer relative than their grandfather, 
Christopher Branch of " Kingsland," who reared and 
sheltered them until his death, which took place about the 
period that the oldest boy attained to legal manhood. 

Under the guardianship of their elder brother, this goal 
was reached and passed by the younger boys also, and in 
1686 Benjamin presumably cleared the western portion of 



4 o BRANCHIANA 

" Kingsland," and had built for him, by Christopher 
Branch and Samuel Branch, a house some twenty feet 
long. There he dwelt a bachelor until the mature age of 
at least thirty — a very unusual proceeding in that day of 
early marriages — and farmed his modest plantation on 
Proctor's Creek with apparently a modest share of suc- 
cess. 

But in such records as yet endure concerning the doings 
of this Benjamin Branch, one lights upon little indicating 
in his entire life more than a respectable mediocrity. He 
inherited a small plantation and appears never to have in- 
creased its dimensions, or, in any event, not materially, 
nor to have lessened them; and he occupied no public 
position, nor apparently enjoyed any particular promi- 
nence. One pictures him as being quite contented and a 
trifle lazy. 

True, the host of trivial facts that have been preserved 
concerning Benjamin Branch of Henrico affords but 
scant afd to the judgment; it is not particularly illumi- 
nating to know that at the inventory of the estate of 
Thomas Jefferson (who, as recorded, married his cousin, 
Mary Branch), Benjamin Branch received "ten shillings 
for a mutton for the funeral" ; or that, in 1699, the College 
of William and Mary brought suit for one pound, five 
shillings, against Benjamin Branch, as the executor of 
Edward Osborne. 

For, about the year 1695 Benjamin Branch of Henrico, 
had married Tabitha Osborne, the elder daughter of 
Edward Osborne of Henrico. 



BRANCHIANA 41 

By Tabitha Osborne, Benjamin Branch of Henrico had 
issue: 

I. Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield, born about the 
year 1700. 

Very shortly after this event Benjamin Branch of Hen- 
rico died ; and his widow re-married within a year or two, 
at most, of her first husband's death. 

Benjamin Branch of Henrico died intestate, ante De- 
cember, 1706, and a third of his estate was by the court 
awarded his widow in the November of 171 1. This order 
was carried out in the February of 1711-12. 

No record remains concerning what lands were pos- 
sessed by Benjamin Branch of Henrico at the time of his 
death, or what was his widow's portion thereof, and the 
scant fact is recorded that she received three negroes — 
" Harry, valued at fifteen pounds ; Betty, valued at eleven 
pounds ; and Doll, valued at nine pounds." 

On a commensurate scale the estate could have been but 
a modest one ; and the enumeration of it was sworn to, on 
the 20th of August, 171 1, by Thomas Cheatham, who had 
already " married the relict and widow of Benjamin 
Branch, deceased." 

The dead man's son, Benjamin Branch, more lately of 
Chesterfield County, appeared in the Orphans' Court in 
the April of 1712, and chose as his guardian his uncle, 
on the maternal side, Edward Osborne of Henrico. 



42 BRANCHIANA 

pertjamin Prancf) of Cfjesfterfielo 

Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield County, the only 
son and child of the foregoing, was born, as has been 
said, about the year 1700, and was reared, after his 
father's death and the re-marriage of his mother, by his 
maternal uncle, Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

The latter was a man of substance and of, at least, a 
local prominence; he died in 1732, and, in passing, it is 
interesting to compare the appraisal of his goods and chat- 
tels, taken the 2nd of October, 1732, and valued in all 
at 351 pounds, eight shillings and six pence, with the 
aforementioned appraisal of the similar belongings of 
Christopher Branch of " Kingsland " (taken just fifty 
years before, and valued at some thirty-eight pounds), 
in view of the fact that Christopher Branch was for his 
period by much the wealthier and the more prominent 
man. But money was becoming more plentiful in Vir- 
ginia, and even the luxuries of life were now accessible. 

In due time Benjamin Branch attained years of discre- 
tion, and, about 1721, took possession of the small esta'te 
left by his father. This lying upon the south side of 
James River, Benjamin Branch became, about 1740, a 
citizen of Chesterfield, when that county was formed from 
the lower portion of Henrico ; and this inherited planta- 
tion he managed to such good effect as materially to in- 
crease its extent, and to die, in 1761, a man of considerable 
landed property. 

He had, however, long before this disposed of the plan- 
tation he acquired from his father — a third of the original 



BRANCHIANA 43 

" Kingsland " plantation, on the north side of Proctor's 
Creek — and now owned lands in various parts of Chester- 
field and Amelia counties ; and appears to have made his 
permanent home upon a plantation which lay to the ex- 
treme southwest of the present Chesterfield County and 
bordered upon the present Sapponey Creek. 

Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield married, prior to 1727, 
his second cousin, Mary Osborne, the elder daughter of 
Thomas Osborne of Henrico, whom he survived. 

By Mary Osborne, Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield 
had issue: 

I. Mary Branch, who survived her father, and prob- 
ably died unmarried. 

II. Martha Branch, who died, presumably unmar- 
ried, before 1760. 

III. Captain Benjamin Branch of "Willow Hill," 
in Chesterfield County. 

IV. Thomas Branch of Manchester Parish, in Ches- 
terfield County, who died unmarried in the latter part of 
1778. 

V. Edward Branch, also of Manchester Parish, who 
died in 1781, having married Lucy (Finney?), and by her 
leaving issue: — Edward; Thomas; William; Benjamin; 
Molly; Lucy; Obedience Turpin; Juday Finney; Eliza- 
beth ; and Prudence. 

VI. Obedience Branch, who married (Edward?) 
Bass of Chesterfield. 



44 BRANCHIANA 

VII, Prudence Branch, who married William Thweat 
of Chesterfield. 

The will of Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield is dated 
31st December, 1760, and was recorded at Chesterfield 
Court-House, in 1762. 

It bequeaths to the testator's son, Thomas Branch, 1,023 
acres of land " below the upper Sappony Creek," in Ches- 
terfield County, and in Amelia County some 200 acres "in 
the little fork of Nibs Creek," and eight negroes ; to the 
testator's son, Edward Branch, 427 acres of land "above 
the upper Sappony Creek," and " my part of the Redwater 
Mill," which was a one-half interest, and ten negroes. 

It appears that the testator had previously deeded the 
other half-interest in this same mill to his oldest son, Cap- 
tain Benjamin Branch, of " Willow Hill," and the ruins 
of it, in passing, yet stand beside Redwater Creek, a tribu- 
tary of Proctor's Creek, in eastern Chesterfield, on what 
was part of the land originally patented, in 1625, by Cap- 
tain Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale." 

This Thomas Osborne was an ancestor both of the 
mother and of the wife of Benjamin Branch of Chester- 
field, and it was through one of these that the latter most 
probably acquired the mill ; yet the original Branch plan- 
tation, as recorded, lay to the immediate north of Proc- 
tor's Creek, which formed the boundary line between 
"Coxendale" and "Kingsland," and it is likely that the 
mill was originally shared by the two families, as the 
" Kingsland" side contains no tributary of sufficient im- 
portance to supply the necessary power. 



BRANCHIANA 45 

The will of Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield likewise 
bequeaths to the testator's son, Captain Benjamin 
Branch, one negro; to the testator's daughter, Obedience 
Bass, three pounds in current money; to the testator's 
daughter, Prudence Thweat, three pounds in current 
money; and, finally, to the testator's daughter, Mary 
Branch, eight negroes and various household goods. 

The executors are Thomas Branch (the testator's 
second son), Edward Branch (the testator's third son), 
and Robert Goode (presumably the father-in-law of the 
testator's oldest son). 

Captain benjamin prancfj of OTtUoto prtll 

Captain Benjamin Branch of "Willow Hill," the 
third child and oldest son of the foregoing, was born 
about the year 1732. 

His sisters, Mary Branch and Martha Branch, were 
older than he, each of them being born ante 1730, but 
he was the oldest son and the only one abundantly 
able to provide for himself at the time when 
his father drew up his will in 1760 ; it is deducible that at 
this date Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield had already 
transferred to his oldest son such portion of the estate as 
it seemed proper he should inherit, after the example of 
Christopher Branch of " Kingsland " ; he had certainly 
deeded Captain Benjamin Branch a half interest in the 
Redwater Mill, and, in any event, the testator's distinction 
between Benjamin Branch of "Willow Hill" and his 
other sons is precisely paralleled by that drawn between 



46 BRANCHIANA 

his married daughters, now provided for, and his one un- 
married daughter, Mary Branch, who was by this a virgin 
of rather mature years and unlikely to secure a protector. 
However this may have been, Benjamin Branch, the 
younger, very shortly owned a large plantation centering 
about his residence of " Willow Hill," and had acquired 
various tracts of land in Chesterfield and Amelia counties ; 
and he was a man of prominence as well as wealth. 

Benjamin Branch of "Willow Hill" was a member of 
the Chesterfield County Committee of Public Safety in 
1774, and for the same year a justice of the peace for 
Chesterfield, and during the Revolution served as a cap- 
tain in the Chesterfield Militia ; he was awarded in 1777, 
according to the Militia accounts, "for pay, etc., of his 
Company of Chesterfield Militia, 229 pounds, four shill- 
ings and two pence," and, when tranquillity had been re- 
stored he was again appointed a justice of the peace for 
Chesterfield, and later, first in 1780 and afterward in 1786, 
was sheriff of Chesterfield. 

Here is an honorable record; and it was honorably 
ended in 1786. 

Captain Benjamin Branch "of Willow Hill" had mar- 
ried, about 1755, Mary (Goode?), who probably survived 
him, or, at least, died later than 1782. 

By Mary (Goode?), Captain Benjamin Branch of 
"Willow Hill" had issue : 

I. Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield, who married 
Elizabeth Osborne, the daughter of Edward Osborne of 
Chesterfield, and by her had issue. 



BRANCHIANA 47 

II. Edward Branch, of Chesterfield, who likewise left 
issue. 

III. Anne Branch, who married Jones of Ches- 
terfield. 

IV. Thomas Branch, of " Willow Hill." 

V. Obedience Branch. 

The will of Captain Benjamin Branch of "Willow 
Hill" is dated 19th April, 1782, and was recorded at 
Chesterfield Court-House in 1787. 

It mentions the testator's wife, Mary Branch, as yet 
alive, in the April of 1782, when the will was made, and 
bequeaths to the testator's son, Benjamin Branch, three 
negroes merely. Again it is evident that the testator, after 
the usual custom of the Branches, has during his own 
lifetime bestowed upon his eldest son such land as he in- 
tended that eldest son to inherit from his estate. 

It bequeaths to the testator's second son, Edward 
Branch, the plantation (of " Willow Hill ") in Chester- 
field County, and the half-interest held by the testator in 
the Redwater Mill, which, as previously recorded, was 
deeded to the testator by his father ante 1760, — and three 
negroes; and bequeaths to the testator's youngest son 
Thomas Branch, the testator's plantation and lands in 
Amelia County, and three negroes. 

To the testator's daughter, Anne Jones, is bequeathed 
three negroes and various household goods, and to his 
daughter, Obedience Branch, three negroes; and it is 



48 BRANCHIANA 

willed that the remainder of the testator's estate be equally 
divided between his sons, Edward Branch and Thomas 
Branch. 

The executors are "my kinsmen," Edward Bass (the 
testator's nephew), Edward Branch (the testator's 
nephew), and Francis Goode (who was probably the tes- 
tator's brother-in-law). 

aromas pranrtj of OTtlloto ||tll 

Thomas Branch of "Willow Hill," in Chesterfield 
County, was born 4th April, 1767, and was presumably 
the youngest son, if not the youngest child, of the fore- 
going. 

To him his father had bequeathed, as previously re- 
corded, his lands in Amelia County, but it was not long 
before Thomas Branch had likewise acquired the planta- 
tion of " Willow Hill," in Chesterfield, which his father 
had left to the older brother, Edward Branch ; and there 
Thomas Branch resided during the latter years of his life. 

This must have constituted, in all, a decidedly neat 
property, even though the exact dimension and location of 
these lands are now indeterminate; yet Thomas Branch 
of "Willow Hill" appears to have had scant hankering 
for political preferments, and the single public office which 
he is known to have held is that of justice of the peace for 
Chesterfield, to which he was appointed in the year 1797. 

Thomas Branch of " Willow Hill" died 10th Sep- 
tember, 1818. He had married, in 1787, Mary Patteson, 
the daughter of Colonel David Patteson of Chesterfield. 



BRANCHIANA 49 

By Mary Patteson, Thomas Branch of "Willow Hill" 
had issue : 

I. Elizabeth Branch, born 20th October, 1788, and 
died 26th November, 1791. 

II. Mary Branch, born 28th November, 1790, who 
married William Lithgow, and had issue : — Thomas, who 
married Elizabeth Winfree. 

III. Benjamin Branch, born 28th December, 1792, 
and died 15th July, 1794. 

IV. David Henry Branch, born 20th February, 1795, 
who married Mary Branch, and had issue: — Ariadne, 
who married William R. Johnson ; Octavia, who married 
Andrew Dunn; Adele, who married Abram Warwick; 
Martha Patteson; Victoria; and Thomas Henry. 

V. Martha Branch, born 5th March, 1797, who mar- 
ried John R. Walke, and had issue: — a daughter, who 
married Edwin Friend; Siddenham, who married Su- 
sanna Winfree; Hannah, who married Thomas Brans- 
ford; Olivia, wio married Thomas M. Burfoot; Pank, 
who also married Thomas M. Burfoot ; and John Caspar, 
who married Lucy Robinson. 

VI. Obedience Branch, who married Edward Wat- 
kins Anderson, and had issue: — Thomas Oliver; Mary 
Susan, who married Patrick Finny; Sarah Obedience, 
who married John Doyle; David Jordan; Samuel Patte- 
son; Waverly Francis; Martha Elizabeth, who married 



50 BRANCHIANA 

John A. Miller; and Lucy Anne, who married James 
Stevenson. 

VII. Thomas Turpin Branch, born 26th August, 
1801, and died 27th December, 1801. 

VIII. Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond, 
born 23d December, 1802. 

IX. John Wilkinson Branch, born 18th January, 
1805, and died in infancy. 

X. Lucy Frances Branch, born 18th January, 1805, 
and died, unmarried, in October, 1855. 

XI. Jordan Branch, born 20th April, 1809, who mar- 
ried first Lucy Winfree, and had issue : — Thomas Wiley, 
who married Louise Lewis; and David Patteson, who 
married Mary Bransford. Jordan Branch married, sec- 
ond, Caroline Davidson, and had issue: — Waverly; and 
Lucy, who married Emmet R. Morton. 

XII. Julius Cesar Branch, born 20th April, 181 1, 
who married Hinton, and had issue : — Lelia ; Mar- 
garet ; and Ella, who married John C. Drake. 

XIII. Sarah Branch, born 27th November, 1812, and 
died 29th January, 1814. 

XIV. Sarah Patteson Branch, born 1st May, 18 14, 
and died in the winter of 1826. 

Thomas Branch of " Willow Hill" died intestate, as 
previously recorded, in 1818, and was survived by his wife 



BRANCHIANA 51 

and eight of his children; and his wife, Mary Patteson 
Branch, was, by order of the court, appointed his execu- 
trix. 

QDfjomasf Pranci) of Petersburg ana Etcfimonb 

Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond, the 
eighth child and fourth son of the foregoing, was born 
23d December, 1802, at " Willow Hill," his father's man- 
sion, in Chesterfield County. 

This Thomas Branch, on reaching manhood, removed 
to Petersburg, where he established himself in business 
as a commission merchant and banker. 

He successively founded and carried to success the 
firms of Thomas Branch and Brother, of Thomas Branch 
and Sons, of Branch Sons and Company, and of the 
present Thomas Branch and Company, the latter firm 
being established in Richmond during the Civil War. 

In 1871 Thomas Branch founded the Merchants 
National Bank of Richmond, Virginia, of which he was 
president until 1880, during which year he resigned the 
office, and was succeeded by his third and oldest surviving 
son, John Patteson Branch. The latter likewise succeeded 
his father as the head of the banking and commission firm 
of Thomas Branch and Company. 

During his residence in Petersburg, Thomas Branch 
served as member of the Common Council, as Sheriff, and 
for several terms as Mayor of Petersburg. 

He was a member of the Convention of 1861, and when 
Virginia left the Union was one of the signers of the 



52 BRANCHIANA 

Ordinance of Secession. He had been a Union man until 
the actual commencement of the Civil War, had voted 
against Virginia's leaving the Union, and he assented to 
this measure only when desired to do so by those who had 
appointed- him their representative ; but the die once cast, 
he alike devoted his sons — now five in number — and his 
not inconsiderable wealth to the defence of his native 
State, and unflinchingly. 

After the Civil War, Thomas Branch made his perma- 
nent home in Richmond, Virginia, where he resided until 
the very end of his long life. In that city Thomas Branch 
died upon the fifteenth of November, 1888. 

In the year 1848, Thomas Branch had met with tem- 
porary reverses in business, but within a very short period 
had discharged his obligations in full; and more lately 
he was noted for his conservatism as a merchant, and the 
firm of which he was the head weathered the great panics 
of 1857 and 1873 unscathed. He died possessed of a con- 
siderable fortune. 

Shortly after his first marriage, in 1831, he had joined 
the Methodist Church, and for the remainder of his long 
and active life was one of its most devoted and most use- 
ful members. It has been estimated that he played a 
conspicuous part in some fifty of the annual conferences ; 
and his pecuniary contributions to the cause of Methodism 
were proverbially enormous. 

In addition, Thomas Branch was treasurer of the Vir- 
ginia Bible Society, and for many years treasurer of the 
Magdalen Association, of Richmond, Virginia, and a pro- 



BRANCHIANA 53 

fuse assistant of both ; and he was also president of the 
Board of Trustees of Randolph-Macon College. 

It here appears appropriate to cite some portion of the 
well-earned tribute paid to the memory of Thomas Branch 
very shortly after his decease : 

" When such a man dies he merits more than the mere 
mention of the fact. For his character and life were in 
many respects marked and conspicuous. He had nearly 
reached his eighty-sixth birthday. He had lived through 
nearly three generations, and through all had been, in an 
emphatic sense, a felt presence and power in society. 

" Nature cast him into a positive mould. The negative 
and the neutral were, as a rule, foreign to his instincts. 

" The great questions and interests of the generations 
through which he lived, whether social, commercial, politi- 
cal, or religious, not only claimed his attention, but roused 
in him an enthusiastic consideration. 

" Whatever the questions or cause he espoused or op- 
posed, it was with ardor and enthusiasm. 

" Such was the depth of his convictions, and such the 
force of his will and the energy of his nature, that when- 
ever he believed a measure ought to be carried, or a thing 
done, he allowed no opposition to intimidate him or any 
obstacles to discourage. 

" The consequence was he became a man of results. He 
stepped to the front and there held a conspicuous place 
for near half a century. . . . 

"This was also true of him in his relations to the 
church. Here, as elsewhere, the elements of his character 



54 BRANCHIANA 

forbid to him a negative position. The church of his 
choice early recognized these qualities, and called him into 
official station and to representative trusts. Few among 
us anywhere have filled so long the honored and respon- 
sible office of a steward. He has been a conspicuous repre- 
sentative of his church in the Quarterly, Annual and Gen- 
eral Conferences. Until disabled by age it was his delight 
to be at them. His devotion to his church, to her doc- 
trines, her piety, her ministry and all her enterprises, was 
marked and well known. And for long years he was the 
faithful trustee, the fast friend and the liberal supporter 
of Randolph-Macon College. 

" But there was one feature of his character that de- 
serves special mention, and that was his catholicity of 
spirit. While devoted to his own church, he was singu- 
larly free from sectarianism. His heart went out to the 
ministry and brethren of sister churches, and with them 
he delighted to mingle and to worship. . . . 

" His deep interest for many years in the work of the 
Virginia Bible Society was one of the many evidences of 
his interest in the progress of our holy Christianity. Such 
a man can but be missed. For when age had so far dis- 
abled him as to take him out of the wonted activities of 
life, his life continued a benediction to many, even to the 
last 

"And now the best of all is : His end was peace. Fully 
sensible of his condition, he expressed no fear of death, 
and with his trust in his Saviour, full of years, labors, and 
honors, and crowned to the last with the loving devotion 



BRANCHIANA 55 

of a large family circle, and many fiiends, be bade adieu 
to bis family, and fell asleep with his fathers. 

" In the death of this honored citizen the community, 
the State of Virginia, and the Methodist Church have 
alike sustained a severe loss. Yet Mr. Branch left his 
impress for good upon each of them, and his influence will 
be felt and his name honored for generations yet to come. 
A useful citizen, an upright and enterprising man of busi- 
ness, and a conscientious, consistent Christian, he lived 
honored and respected and died regretted and mourned 
by the entire community. What higher compliment could 
be paid to any man ?" 

Thomas Branch married, first, at "Oak Hill," in Amelia 
County, on the 19th of October, 1825, Sarah Pride Read, 
the daughter of John Blythe Read of Wales and Chester- 
field. 

By Sarah Pride Read, Thomas Branch of Petersburg 
and Richmond had issue: 

I. Thomas Waverly Branch, who died in infancy. 

II. James Read Branch. 

III. John Patteson Branch. 

IV. Susan Doggett Branch, who married William 
H. Christian. 

V. Sarah Frances Branch, who married Frederick 
R. Scott. 

VI. Thomas Plummer Branch. 



56 BRANCHIANA 

VII. Mary Austin Branch, who died without issue. 

VIII. Emily Read Branch, who married George A. 
Cunningham. 

IX. Bettie Rosalama Branch, who married Benja- 
min Suttle, and died without issue. 

X. William; Addison Branch, who died unmarried, 
and without issue. 

XI. Melville Irby Branch. 

XII. Eugene Branch, who died in infancy. 

XTII. D'Arcy Paul Branch, who died in infancy. 

Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond married, 
second, in Westmoreland County, in Virginia, on 22d of 
April, 1857, Anne Adams Wheelright, the daughter of 
Joseph Wheelright of Westmoreland. 

By Anne Adams Wheelright, Thomas Branch of 
Petersburg and Richmond had issue: 

I. Carter Wheelright Branch. 

II. Miriam Branch, who married Barton H. Grundy. 

III. Carolina Branch. 

The will of Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Rich- 
mond is recorded at the Chancery Court of Richmond, 
Virginia. It is dated 6th of October, 1888, and was re- 
corded 20th of November, 1888. 



BRANCHIANA 57 

The executors are Anne Wheelright Branch (the tes- 
tator's second and surviving wife), and Carter Wheel- 
right Branch (the testator's ninth and youngest son) . The 
witnesses are James B. McCaw and Richard Irby. 



Stye ©e&enbante of ftfjomag PrancJ) of 
Petersburg anb ftic&monb 



Efjc Besicenbantg of tEJjomas prancf) of 
$ete«tfmrg anb fttcfjmonb 

Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond, as pre- 
vously recorded, was twice married, and had issue, in all, 
sixteen children, nine of whom survived him. 

stomas OTaberlp JJrantf) 

Thomas Waverly Branch, the oldest child of 
Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was born, in 
Petersburg, 13th August, 1826. 

The boy was destined to a brief existence, being bitten 
at the age of four by a pet dog, which had developed 
rabies, while the child was playing with it. 

Thomas Waverly Branch died of hydrophobia 22nd 
July, 1831. 

Colonel 3tamea: &eab Prancf) 

Colonel James Read Branch, the second son and 
child of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was born 
at New Market, in Prince George County, 28th July, 1828. 

He received his early education in Petersburg, and in 
1844 entered Randolph-Macon College, where he gradu- 
ated with the highest honors in 1847, being then only 
nineteen. 

After a brief career as school teacher, in Lunenburg 



62 BRANCHIANA 

County, Virginia, James Read Branch, with his younger 
brother John Patteson Branch, went into business with 
their father in Petersburg, the three founding the banking 
firm of Thomas Branch and Sons, in 1853 ; and in Peters- 
burg James Read Branch resided until the outbreak of 
the Civil War, widely known as a distinguished and pros- 
perous merchant. 

He married, in Richmond, in Virginia, 3rd December, 
1856, his second cousin, Martha Louise Patteson, the 
daughter of Dr. William Anderson Patteson, (and the 
granddaughter of James A. Patteson and of Martha 
Patteson, the daughter of Colonel David Patteson of 
Chesterfield.) 

From the first, James Read Branch had held to the doc- 
trine of State's Rights, and had advocated the cause of 
Secession. Upon the commencement of hostilities be- 
tween the North and the South he raised a company of 
infantry, known as the "Lee Guard", and afterward, 
when transferred to the artillery, in 1862, known as 
"Branch's Battery" — which was one of the best equipped 
and most effective artillery companies in the Confederate 
Army, serving in the department of North Carolina, and 
in General Robert Ransom's Division, Army of Northern 
Virginia. 

It was at the Battle of Malvern Hill that Captain 
Branch figured as the hero of one of the most remarkable 
fights against well-nigh overwhelming odds which has 
ever been recorded when for an hour the two guns he 
commanded held in check twenty-four guns of the Union 



BRANCHIANA 63 

forces. Almost every man who followed him was killed, 
and he himself served one of the pieces until ordered to 
retire; and this retreat was so successfully conducted 
that he even managed to preserve both guns. 

Through this and similar achievements Captain Branch 
was, in due course, promoted to the rank of Lieutenant- 
Colonel ; and his command, among other exploits, bore a 
part in the brilliant capture of Plymouth, where, how- 
ever, Colonel Branch was so severely and permanently 
disabled' — one leg being broken' in no less than three 
places — that he was in the ultimate, forced to retire from 
active service, though he retained his command; and his 
devotion to the cause of the Confederacy burned bright 
until the last. 

During the war, James Read Branch had, in 1863, re- 
moved his family from Petersburg to Richmond, in which 
latter city he resided until the day of his death, 2nd July, 
1869. 

The circumstances attendant upon this event are not 
unworthy of somewhat minute detail. Recognizing that 
the cause for which he had fought was lost, and irretriev- 
ably so, Colonel Branch had in peace endeavored to for- 
ward the interests of that State which he had already 
served in war. Virginia was upon the verge of ac- 
cepting re-admission into the Union ; the days of Recon- 
struction were over and already carpet-baggism tottered. 
He entered politics at forty years of age, as a candidate 
for the Senate, in an earnest endeavor to re-unite the sev- 
ered races and bring together the negro and the Cau- 



64 BRANCHIANA 

casian for the best interests of both, — and supporting 
Gilbert R. Walker for Governor of Virginia, as against 
Gideon Wells, the carpet-bag nominee. 

The career of James Read Branch as a politician, 
though brief, developed abilities of a very high order. 
And in the end, the Conservative party, whose candidate 
he was, achieved a sweeping triumph. 

This was already apparent on July 2, 1869, upon which 
date a barbecue was arranged on Vauxhall Island — in 
James River, between Richmond and Manchester, and 
just above Mayo's Bridge — for the benefit of the colored 
men of the city, who had avowed themselves in favor of 
Colonel Walker for governor. Colonel Branch and a 
number of other gentlemen had taken an active part in 
the preliminary arrangements. 

What follows is quoted from the Richmond Dispatch of 
July 3, 1869; and allowances are to be made for certain 
extreimities of language, and the hackneyed phrases 
doubly dear to the public journals of that day: — 

"It is our painful duty this morning to lay -before our 
readers the particulars of one of the most appalling 
calamities that ever touched the heart of this community. 
The city is in mourning. One of her favorite sons has 
fallen from hopeful, buoyant life into a bloody grave. 
Three other worthy citizens are dead, and others still have 
received wounds which render their recovery at least 
doubtful. 

"There are few citizens of Richmond who were not 
aware that a barbecue was to have been held by the col- 



BRANCHIANA 65 

ored voters, who favored the election of Colonel Walker 
and the adoption of the expurgated constitution, at Vaux- 
hall's Island on yesterday afternoon. About two hundred 
and fifty of the most respectable colored men in Rich- 
mond and Henrico signed the call for this demonstration, 
and many of our most prominent white citizens mani- 
fested a great deal of interest in the enterprise. Among 
these none were more active than Colonel James 
R. Branch, whose name headed the Conservative sena- 
torial ticket for this district. He arrived early at the 
place selected for the barbecue, and was stirring about 
with great activity, making suggestions, and by his pleas- 
ant remarks contributing not a little to the goodhumor 
of the party. 

"It was not intended to hold the barbecue on Vaux- 
hall's Island, but on the adjacent one, known as Kitchen 
Island. A suspension bridge, not more than fifty feet in 
length and about five feet in width, connected them, and 
to get to the barbecue, of course, this bridge had to be 
crossed. A policeman, stationed at the end nearest Rich- 
mond, was directed to allow none but those having tickets 
to pass until all the arrangements for the dinner and 
speaking were consummated. 

"The fortunate possessors of tickets passed over singly 
or in groups, until about seventy-five colored men and a., 
least a hundred whites were over. 

"This was the state of affairs, when a colored man 
rushed up to Colonel Branch — then on Kitchen Island — 
and informed him that there were a good many Walker 



66 BRANCHIANA 

men on the other island who couldn't come over because 
they did not have tickets. Colonel Branch said : 'Let them 
all come,' or something to that effect, and went on the 
bridge, accompanied by another person, whose name we 
could not learn. He walked rapidly half-way across, and 
then beckoning to the policeman on duty, exclaimed: 
'Let them come on! Dinner is nearly ready! There's 
plenty of room!' 

"The policeman thereupon gave way, and the eager 
crowd on the other side rushed on the bridge. There was 
a swaying to and fro. Somebody cried: 'The bridge is 
giving away,' and in an instant the heavy structure, with 
its human freight, fell with a crash into the rushing flood 
below. 

"The sound was heard all over both islands, and there 
was a simultaneous rush to the bridge. The sight that 
met the eye was appalling. Ten or fifteen human beings 
were buried beneath the heavy timbers, threatened alike 
with death from drowning and the crushing weight. 
Most of them, being only slightly wounded, soon 
scrambled out, and, grasping the chains and jumping 
from timber to timber, reached the shore. 

"Others, however, were not so fortunate. The first of 
these was Colonel Branch. He had been struck on the 
back of the neck by a massive iron chain. Then falling 
beneath the bridge, he was unable to extricate himself, 
and lay for several minutes, with the water dashing over 
his face, struggling in vain. Policeman Kirkman, who 
was on duty at the end of the bridge nearest VauxhaU's 



BRANCHIANA 67 

Island, had his head mashed between two falling beams, 
and was instantly killed; and others whose names were 
not until afterwards ascertained, were also badly injured. 

"There was no neglect on the part of the by-standers. 
A score df men, both white and colored, at once plunged 
into the stream, many of them not stopping to take off 
their clothing. Through their efforts the injured men 
were finally extricated and brought to land. 

"The scene on Vauxhall's Island after this beggars de- 
scription. The news, which had flown through the city 
like wild-fire, drew hundreds of our citizens to the spot, 
and every one who arrived was at once an anxious in- 
quirer. Men ran hither and thither, asking many ques- 
tions in one breath ; policemen called loudly to the crowd 
to stand back from the wounded and give them air; and 
those cooler men of the surgical art, moved more calmly 
about in search of, or in aid of, some sufferer. 

"The bodies of Colonel Branch and Policeman Kirk- 
ham were placed in the bowling-alley on the island, and 
the wounded men were provided for as comfortably and 
as speedily as possible. 

"Colonel Branch was found to have received a severe 
blow over the right temple, causing concussion of the 
brain, and a severe cut over the top of the head. It is not 
thought that these wounds would have caused death, as 
he struggled so hard after he had fallen into the water. 
The theory is that he was borne under the water by the 
weight of the bridge and the crowd upon it, and drowned. 
After his body had been laid in the bowling-alley, some 



68 BRANCHIANA 

one shouted for a surgeon, saying that he was still breath- 
ing. In a moment the physicians were at work with every 
manner of restorative, but all in vain — the spirit of James 
R. Branch had fled. 

"When Colonel Branch was first seen, his head, though 
bleeding, was above water, and he threw up his hand, at 
the same time calling for assistance. Several men rushed 
over to help him. Their weight sank the debris, and with 
it the unfortunate man went under. When he was extri- 
cated life was extinct. 

"We do not exaggerate the public feeling at the loss of 
this excellent gentleman and invaluable citizen, when we 
say that the death of no man in the city would be more 
deeply deplored. He was one of the most useful men. 
He was sagacious, energetic, liberal, patriotic. He was 
quick to foresee, prompt to act, and untiring in his public 
devotion. He was what, in modern parlance, is styled a 
"live man"; and he was considered as one of the men 
just suited to the exigency of the times — created, as it 
were, for them — to bear an important part in bringing 
our dear mother Virginia out of the embarrassments and 
woes in which she is involved and putting her upon her 
new career of grandeur and power. 

"The venerable Thomas Branch, his father, was on the 
island when the accident occurred, and, though he did 
not behold it, he soon learned his bereavement from the 
lifeless body of his son. When all hope of the restoration 
of his son was gone, he crossed the bridge to wend his 
way home. He walked as in a dream, with fixed eyes. 



BRANCHIANA 69 

There was a delirium of woe in his steady gait and un- 
turning head that struck the deepest chords of sympathy 
in the breasts of all who saw him." 

Colonel James Read Branch, as previously recorded, 
had married his second cousin, Martha Louise Patteson, 
the daughter of Dr. William Anderson Patteson of 
Petersburg and Richmond. They had issue : 

I. Sarah Read Branch, born 9th October, 1857. 

II. Anne Harris Branch, born 31st December, 1859. 

III. Elizabeth Halsted Branch, born 4th July, 
1 861. 

IV. Colonel James Ransom Branch, born 14th De- 
cember, 1863. 

V. Mary Cooke Branch, born 16th September, 1866. 

SARAH READ McADAMS- 
Sarah Read Branch, the first child and daughter of 
James Read Branch and Martha Louise Patteson, was 
born, in Richmond, Virginia, 9th October, 1857. 

She married, in Richmond, Virginia, 6th November, 
1878, George Brockenborough McAdams, only son of 
William McAdams of Pensacola, Florida, and afterward 
for many years, a prominent business man of Richmond. 
Mr. McAdams died very suddenly 22d February, 1896. 
By George Brockenborough McAdams, Sarah Read 
Branch had issue : 

I. Colonel Thomas Branch McAdams, born 12th 
November, 1879. 



70 BRANCHIANA. 

II. Louise Brockenborough McAdams, born 25th 
October, 1885. 

Colonel Thomas Branch McAdams 

Colonel Thomas Branch McAdams was born, in 
Richmond, Virginia, 12th November, 1879. 

His early education was acquired at the McGuire 
School, Richmond, and at Richmond College, where he 
graduated at the age of eighteen, an unprecedented event, 
receiving at that time the degree of Master of Arts. He 
stood foremost in his class at the time of graduation, giv- 
ing the promise of an exceptional future. 

For one year after graduation, he was employed as 
clerk in the Merchants National Bank, leaving his posi- 
tion to enter the employ of Thomas Branch and Com- 
pany. He remained with this firm for about five years, 
when, in December, 1903, he re-entered the employment 
of the Merchants National. 

His ability there won rapid promotion, and, in March, 
1904, he was made assistant cashier, and in February, 
1906, as the unanimous choice of the Board of Directors, 
was elected to the office of cashier. 

Colonel McAdams is very prominent socially, is colo- 
nel on the staff of Governor Swanson, of Virginia, and 
a Mason of high degree. 

He married in Charlotte, North Carolina, 9th October, 
1906, Edna Harris McLure, the daughter of Edward 
Conrad McLure of South Carolina. 

They have issue: 

I. Sarah Reade McAdams, born 20th July, 1907. 




fin. of Mbrk P-jhhshm.g Company 




BRANCHIANA. 



7i 



ANNE BRANCH CABELL 
Anne Harris Branch, the second child and daughter 
of James Read Branch and Martha Louise Patteson, was 
born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 31st December, 1859. 

She married in Richmond, Virginia, 14th November, 
1877, Dr. Robert Gamble Cabell, Jr., the son of Dr. Rob- 
ert Gamble Cabell of Richmond, Virginia. 

By Robert Gamble Cabell, Anne Harris Branch had 
issue: 

I. James Branch Cabell, born 14th April, 1879. 

II. Robert Gamble Cabell, born 27th April, 1881. 

III. John Harris Cabell, born 27th February, 1883. 

James Branch Cabell 

James Branch Cabell was born, in Richmond, Vir- 
ginia, 14th April, 1879. 

He graduated from the College of William and Mary 
in 1898, and afterward took up newspaper work as a pro- 
fession, being for two years with the New York Herald, 
and more lately with the Richmond, (Va.) News. 

He abandoned journalism for magazine work in 1901, 
and has since contributed to various periodicals some 
forty short stories, novelettes, and so on, and has also 
published in book form The Eagle's Shadow, The Line of 
Love, Gallantry, and the present volume. 

Robert Gamble Cabell 
Robert Gamble Cabell was born, in Richmond, Vir- 
ginia, 27th April, 1881. 



72 BRANCHIANA 

On graduating from the Richmond High School in 
1897 he entered the offices of the Merchants National 
Bank, and more lately the employ of Thomas Branch and 
Company, of Richmond, Virginia, and has been since then 
connected with that firm. 

John Harris Cabell 

John Harris Cabell was born, in Richmond, Vir- 
ginia, 27th February, 1883. 

He graduated, with distinction, from the Virginia Mili- 
tary Institute in 1901, and was for two years afterward 
a sub-professor at that college. He has been since 1904 
a civil engineer in the employ of the United Gas Improve- 
ment Company, and has been stationed during this period 
in various parts of America. 

ELIZABETH HALSTED BOWIE 
Elizabeth Halsted Branch, the third child and 
daughter of Colonel James Read Branch and Martha 
Louise Patteson, was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 4th 
July, 1861. 

She married, in Richmond, Virginia, 16th November, 
1881, Walter Russell Bowie, the son of Captain Walter 
Russell Bowie of Westmoreland County, Virginia, and 
afterward of Richmond. Mr. Bowie died 14th Novem- 
ber, 1894. 

By Walter Russell Bowie, Elizabeth Halsted Branch 
had issue: 

I. Walter Russell Bowie, born 8th October, 1882. 

II. Martha Patteson Bowie, born 29th July, 1884. 



BRANCHIANA 73 

Walter Russell Bowie 

Walter Russell Bowie was born in Richmond, Vir- 
ginia, 8th October 1882. 

His early education was received at the Pottstown Hill 
School, in Pennsylvania, whence he passed to Harvard 
College, from which institution he was graduated, with 
the highest honors, in 1904. He taught for a year at the 
Hill School, of Pottstown, Pennsylvania, and then resolv- 
ing to enter the ministry, became a student at the Theo- 
logical Seminary of Virginia, near Alexandria 

COLONEL JAMES RANSOM BRANCH 
Colonel James Ransom Branch, the fourth child 
and only son of Colonel James Read Branch and Martha 
Louise Patteson, was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 14th 
December, 1863, and is to-day, according to the ancient 
law of primogeniture, the head of the Branch family of 
Virginia. 

He was educated at McGuire's, McCabe's, General 
Robert Ransom's, and Colonel Thomas H. Carter's 
schools, and at the Richmond College. He entered the 
Merchants National Bank in 1881 as assistant to Mr. 
John Morton, who was then teller. 

Colonel Branch left the bank when twenty-one years 
old and went to raising thorough-bred horses and cattle. 
Later he sold out to Mr. T. L. Blanton, and became senior 
partner of Branch and Leath, who controlled a syndicate 
of fourteen theatres in the South, including Richmond 
and Norfolk. 



74 BRANCHIANA 

This partnership being dissolved, Colonel Branch again 
accepted a position in the Merchants National Bank in 
1890, and worked up gradually to the responsible posi- 
tion of special correspondent and chief of the collection 
department. 

Under his supervision this bank's deposits from out- 
of-town banks became the largest of any institution from 
Baltimore to New Orleans. In the summer of 1895 he 
was appointed National Bank Examiner for Virginia, 
West Virginia, North and South Carolina and Eastern 
Tennessee. 

Colonel Branch made an enviable record while in the 
City Council of Richmond, Virginia, and by his diligent 
scrutiny of affairs ferreted out and brought to light 
large defalcations among city officials which had been in 
progress for years. He also introduced the resolutions 
for free baths and reduced fares on street cars for school 
children. 

As a boy, he entered the National Guard as a private, 
and, owing to his military abilities, he went through all 
grades, from private to lieutenant-colonel of the First 
Virginia Cavalry. His examination by the Board of 
Officers was pronounced to be of the highest character. 
He was also a member of the Board of Officers, who drew 
up the regulations for the Virginia Volunteers. 

In 1898 President McKinley appointed him major of 
the Seventh Immune Regiment, United States Volunteer 
Infantry, in which position Colonel Branch served with 
distinction throughout the Spanish War. 



BRANCHIANA 75 

Colonel Branch was elected, 17th October, 1895, Sec- 
retary of the American Bankers' Association, and has 
held this office ever since; and, dating from that period, 
has been a resident of New York City. 

Colonel Branch married, in Richmond, Virginia, 28th 
October, 1885, Mary Lilian Hubball, the daughter of 
Ebenezer Hubball of Baltimore, Maryland. They have 
issue : 

I. James Robinson Branch, born 23d July, 1886; 
died 7th November, 1905. 

II. Mary Cooke Branch, born 21st December, ''1887. 

III. Allan Talbott Branch, born 20th February, 
1890; died 1st July, 1890. 

JAMES ROBINSON BRANCH 

. James Robinson Branch was bom, in Richmond, 
Virginia, 23d July, 1886. 

He was educated in Richmond and in New York City, 
and was, in 1903, entered as a midshipman at the United 
States Naval Academy, at Annapolis, Maryland. His 
tragic death in that city, 7th November, 1905, is not here 
touched upon, both as a matter that has already been 
accorded a world-wide discussion, and as one of which 
the present compiler may not in reason hope to treat dis- 
passionately. 

It appears preferable simply to quote the verdict of his 
class-mates, as having been, in view of all the circum- 
stances, the best-informed and most unbiased judges. 



76 , BRANCHIANA 

What follows is transcribed in its entirety from "The 
Lucky Bag" of 1907. 

"The Class of 1907, in affectionate memory of James 
Branch, Jr., whose life was sacrificed as a result of the 
code of honor of the Brigade in the Academy, established 
for years and enforced for most of our course, have 
erected a monument over his body in the Naval Ceme- 
tery. 'All things work together for good.' His death 
marks the turn of the tide in the lives of the midshipmen 
of all classes, from what was deliberately wrong, dan- 
gerous and petty to the abolishment of hazing in all its 
forms, class fighting, and disregard of the law. It marks 
the greatest advance of standard in the history of the 
Academy, a seeking and a finding of the higher and 
nobler type of manliness in duty and character. 

"We have only love in memory of our class-mate for 
his character, honor, courage, and purity of life, that has 
been an inspiration to all of us who have known him." 

Such was the verdict of his class, and circumstances 
render it the one decisive verdict, since this class alone 
was capable to judge the vexed affair with intimacy and 
from every possible viewpoint. They have judged; and 
their verdict stands immutable. 

MARY COOKE MUNFORD 
Mary Cooke Branch, the fifth child and fourth 
daughter of Colonel James Read Branch and Martha 
Louise Patteson, was born, in Richmond, Virginia, 16th 
September, 1866. 



BRANCHIANA 77 

She married in Richmond, Virginia, 22d November, 
1893, Beverley Bland Munford, the son of John D. Mun- 
ford of Richmond and Williamsburg, Virginia. 

By Beverley Bland Munford, Mary Cooke Branch has 
issue: 

I. May Safford Munford, born 22d November, 1895. 

II. Beverley Bland Munford, born 26th February, 
1899. 

Colonel SToIm $attefion Pranti) 

John Patteson Branch, the third son and child of 
Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was born, in 
Petersburg, 9th October, 1830. 

So much has been already written concerning this illus- 
trious Virginian, that it here appears expedient merely 
to abridge, with minor alterations, from the biography of 
John Patteson Branch as it stands in "Men of Mark." 

"With such parents, Mr. Branch had, by his very birth, 
a hopeful start in life. His father afforded him the best 
educational advantages in the public and private schools 
of his native city, but at the time he would have entered 
college, his health was poor, and so he turned aside, to 
engage in the commercial career to which he was intended 
to devote the remainder of his life; and in 1848 he en- 
tered his father's office as a clerk. 

"It was at this time that he began to spend many of 
his spare moments in the study of books on commercial 
subjects, from which he has derived large help in the 
pursuit of business. 



78 BRANCHIANA 

"Mr. Branch remained in the mercantile business until 
the outbreak of the Civil War, and then, at once, en- 
listed in the Confederate Army, and became more lately 
first lieutenant in the 44th Virginia Battalion. 

"He remained in the service of his State until the war 
closed, and was at Appomattox Court-House when Gen- 
eral Lee surrendered his worn-out force to the superior 
strength of General Grant. 

"On the retreat from Petersburg to Appomattox 
Court-House he was detailed on the staff of Major Snod- 
grass, who was acting quartermaster-general of Gen- 
eral Lee's army. 

"On May 12, 1863, during the progress of the Civil 
War, he was united in happy wedlock to Mary Louise 
Merritt Kerr, the daughter of Rev. Dr. John Kerr of 
Petersburg. 

"At the cessation of hostilities, Mr. Branch turned his 
attention to banking, and in 1871, removed from Peters- 
burg to Richmond, in which latter city he has made his 
permanent home. 

"Exigencies of space alone prevent a detailment of the 
marvelous career that has made of him, perhaps, the 
foremost man of business in the South ; suffice it, that in 
1880 he succeeded his venerable father as president of 
the Merchants National Bank of Richmond, and a trifle 
later, as head of the banking and commission firm of 
Thomas Branch and Company of the same city — either of 
which positions he has occupied ever since, and with 
marked success. 



BRANCHIANA 79 

"While Mr. Branch has never held a civil or political 
office, and has never aspired to one, he has always been 
a public-spirited citizen, and as such, interested in ques- 
tions that concern, in any way, the welfare of his city, his 
State, or his country. 

"He is the author of a number of articles on finance, 
written primarily for the purpose of instructing the pub- 
lic in things vital to commercial welfare and to business 
development and to progress. 

"In addition, Mr. Branch has been recognized as a 
leader of the agitation in his city for better streets, for 
good sewerage and drainage, for pure food, and for all 
other things aiming toward the improvement of the pub- 
lic welfare — having had a large part in the good work 
which has resulted in the re-organization of the Board of 
Health and in the adoption of more effective sanitary 
regulations. 

"He has given the money to his chosen city for the 
erection of the first building of public baths in the State 
of Virginia, and has been a liberal contributor to every 
public charity or work of general interest calling for the 
gifts of the people at large. 

"John Patteson Branch has, in fine, been always fore- 
most in the discussion of subjects of public interest, and 
ever ready to give his time and labor to promote an en- 
terprise that would help the people, or to prevent any 
movement which he believed to have within it possibilities 
of injury. 

"Like his father before him, Mr. Branch has always 



80 BRANCHIANA 

believed that religion is indispensable both to private and 
to public welfare, and to individual happiness; and has 
found the type of religion best suited to his needs in the 
Methodist Church, which he joined when thirteen years 
of age. 

"He is at this time a steward and a trustee of the Cen- 
tenary Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in the City of 
Richmond, a member of the Board of Trustees of the 
Randolph-Macon system of colleges and academies, of 
the Board of Trustees of the Methodist Orphanage of 
the Virginia Conference, and of the Board of Managers 
of the 'Methodist Institute for Christian Work' in 
Richmond. 

"Mr. Branch has been repeatedly a delegate to the an- 
nual and general conferences of his church; and to all 
these institutions he has given his valuable time and ad- 
vice, and has made large contributions of money. 

"He has recently built and equipped, in memory of his 
wife, who died in the year 1896, the Branch Dormitory at 
Randolph-Macon College in Ashland — a handsome and 
much-needed building and a valuable adjunct to the work 
of this well-known school. 

"And for years Mr. Branch has been one of the largest 
contributors to the foreign missions of the Methodist 
Church in the South, and is always appealed to by the 
Board of Missions in any case of special need." 

John Patteson Branch, as previously recorded, married, 
in Petersburg, in Virginia, 12th May, 1863, Mary Louise 
Merritt Kerr, the daughter of Rev. Dr. John Kerr of 
Petersburg. They had issue: 



BRANCHIANA 81 

I. Blythe Walker Branch, born 16th March, 1864. 

II. John Kerr Branch, born 1st May, 1865. 

III. Effie Kerr Branch, born 15th August, 1866. 

IV. Margaret Elizabeth Branch, born November, 
1876. 

BLYTHE WALKER BRANCH 

Blythe Walker Branch, the first child and son of 
John Patteson Branch and Mary Louise Merritt Kerr, 
was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 16th March, 1864. 

He was educated by Professor Blackford, of the Epis- 
copal High School, near Alexandria, Virginia. He re- 
ceived his business education in the office of Thomas 
Branch and Company, and afterward became a partner in 
that firm. 

Upon changing his residence to Paris, France, he sold 
out his interest in Thomas Branch and Company, and he 
is now managing in France the oil business (in that 
country) of the Galena Oil Company of Franklin, Penn- 
sylvania. 

Blythe Walker Branch married, in 1899, Theresa T. 
Tarrant of Paris, France. 

JOHN KERR BRANCH 

John Kerr Branch, the second child and son of John 
Patteson Branch and Mary Louise Merritt Kerr, was 
born, in Danville, Virginia, 1st May, 1865. 

Upon attaining manhood, he entered business life with 
his father, and is to-day vice-president of the Merchants 



82 BRANCHIANA 

National Bank, and a partner in the firm of Thomas 
Branch and Company. 

John Kerr Branch married, in 1886, Beulah Gould, the 
daughter of David Gould of New York. They have issue : 

I. John Akin Branch, born 19th August, 1887. 

II. Zayde Bancroft Branch, born 16th May, 1891. 

III. Louise Branch, born 23d February, 1900. 

MARGARET BRANCH GLASGOW 
Margaret Elizabeth Branch, the second daughter 
and fourth child of John Patteson Branch and Mary 
Louise Merritt Kerr, was born, in Richmond, Virginia, 
in the November of 1876. 

She married, 1st October, 1901, Arthur Graham Glas- 
gow of Richmond, Virginia, and afterward of London, 
England. 

By Arthur Graham Glasgow, Margaret Elizabeth 
Branch has issue : 

I. Margaret Branch Glasgow, born 8th November, 
1902. 

&uftm ©oggett ^rancfj 

Susan Doggett Branch, the fourth child and first 
daughter of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was 
born, in Petersburg, 30th November, 1832. 

She married in Petersburg, on 15th March, 1853, Rev- 
erend Doctor William H. Christian of Petersburg, and 
died 20th May, i860. 



BRANCHIANA 83 

By William H. Christian of Petersburg, Susan Dog- 
gett Branch had issue : 

I. Thomas Branch Christian, born 1st July, 1854. 

II. William Edmund Christian, born 14th May, 
1856. 

III. Mary Susan Christian, Dorn 17th May, i860. 

THOMAS BRANCH CHRISTIAN 
Thomas Branch Christian, the first child and son 

of Susan Doggett Branch and William H. Christian, was 

born, in Petersburg, July 1st, 1854. 

He was educated at Randolph-Macon College, and 

subsequently entered business life, being for many years 

a prominent banker and broker in Richmond, Virginia. 

He afterward removed to Chicago, where as a member 

of the Chicago Board of Trade he was well-known in 

financial circles. 

Thomas Branch Christian never married and died 

without issue. 

WILLIAM EDMUND CHRISTIAN 
William Edmund Christian, the second child and 
son of Susan Doggett Branch and William H. Christian, 
was born, in Raleigh, North Carolina, 14th May, 1856. 
He graduated at Randolph-Macon College, and after- 
ward at the University of Virginia. Adopting journal- 
ism as a profession, he became more lately the Washing- 
ton correspondent of the New York Herald, and during 



84 BRANCHIANA 

the Spanish War served brilliantly in Cuba as corres- 
pondent of the same paper. 

He afterward removed to Atlanta, Georgia, where he 
is to-day the Assistant-General Passenger Agent of the 
Seaboard Air Line Railway. 

William Edmund Christian married, in Richmond, Vir- 
ginia, 2nd June, 1885, Julia Jackson 1 , the daughter of 
General "Stonewall" Jackson. 

They have issue: 

I. Julia Jackson Christian, born 5th June, 1887, 
who married Edmund Randolph Preston of Charlotte, 
North Carolina. 

II. Thomas Jonathan Jackson Christian, born 
29th August, 1888. 

g>araf) Jfrances iBrancf) 

Sarah Frances Branch, the fifth child and second 
daughter of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was 
born, in Petersburg, 19th October, 1834. 

She married, in Petersburg, on 14th April, 1857, Major 
Frederick R. Scott of Ireland, more lately a prominent 
banker of Richmond, Virginia. 

Sarah Frances Branch died, in Richmond, 9th June, 
1907. 

By Frederick R. Scott of Ireland and Virginia, Sarah 
Frances Branch had issue: 

I. John Walker Scott, born 19th January, 1858. 



BRANCHIANA 85 

II. Mary Austin Scott, born 10th March, 1859. 

III. Frances Scott, born February, 1861. 

IV. Frederick William Scott, born 30th August, 
1862. 

V. Thomas Branch Scott, born 1st May, 1865. 

VI. Edward Walker Scott, born 1st May, 1865. 

VII. James Hamilton Scott, born 18th July, 1867. 

VIII. Isabel Scott. 

IX. George Cole Scott, born 23d June, 1875. 

JOHN WALKER SCOTT, 

John Walker Scott, the first child and son of Sarah 
Frances Branch and Major Frederick R. Scott, was born, 
in Petersburg, Virginia, 19th January, 1858. 

He graduated at the University of Virginia, and after- 
ward became a lawyer, practising for many years in 
Richmond, Virginia. 

John Walker Scott died, unmarried, 14th November, 
1 901. 

MARY AUSTIN CAMPBELL 

Mary Austin Scott, the second child and first daugh- 
ter of Sarah Frances Branch and Major Frederick R. 
Scott, was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 10th March, 
1859. 

She married, 14th June, 1886, Hugh Campbell of 
Campbelltown, Scotland, and afterward of Richmond, 
Virginia. 



86 BRANCHIANA 

By Hugh Campbell, Mary Austin Scott has issue: 

I. Frederic Scott Campbell, born 16th June, 1887. 

II. Alexander Goold Campbell, born 6th June, 1894. 

III. Frederica Frances Campbell, born 9th July, 
1895. 

IV. Mary Austin Campbell, born 7th October, 1898. 

FREDERIC WILLIAM SCOTT 

Frederic William Scott, the fourth child and sec- 
ond son of Sarah Frances Branch and Major Frederick 
R. Scott, was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 30th Au- 
gust, 1862. 

He entered business life with his father, and after- 
ward founded the banking firm of Scott and String- 
fellow, in Richmond, Virginia, of which he is to-day the 
senior partner. 

Frederic William Scott married, 18th October, 1893, 
Elisabeth Mayo Strother, the daughter of Robert Quarles 
Strother. 

They have issue : 

I. Sydney Buford Scott, born 9th September, 1895. 

II. Isabel Walker Scott, born 22nd June, 1899. 

III. Elisabeth Strother Scott, born 8th February, 
1901. 

IV. Frederic William Scott, born 5th November, 
1903. 

V. Mary Ross Scott, born 4th July, 1906. 



BRANCHIANA 87 

THOMAS BRANCH SCOTT 

Thomas Branch Scott, the fifth child and third son 
of Sarah Frances Branch and Major Frederick R. Scott, 
was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 1st May, 1865. 

He is to-day one of the leading tobacconists of the 
South. 

Thomas Branch Scott married, 31st January, 1894, 
Dora McGill, the daughter of John G. McGill of Peters- 
burg, Virginia. They have issue : 

I. Thomas Branch Scott, born 20th September, 
1894. 

II. Frederick R. Scott, born 7th August, 1898. 

EDWARD WALKER SCOTT 
Edward Walker Scott, the sixth child and fourth son 
of Sarah Frances Branch and Major Frederick R. Scott, 
was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 1st May, 1865. 

He was educated in Richmond and afterward at Prince- 
ton. He afterward removed to Warren, Virginia, and 
adopted the pursuits of both farming and banking. He 
is to-day the president of the Esmont National Bank of 
West Esmont, Virginia. 

Edward Walker Scott married, 9th January, 1901, 
Adelaide Pierson, the daughter of J. Fred Pierson of 
New York. They have issue: 

I. Fred Pierson Scott, born 27th August, 1902. 

II. A daughter, born 30th September, 1903 ; died 27th 
August, 1904. 



88 BRANCHIANA 

III. Edward Walker Scott, born 17th September, 
1904. 

JAMES HAMILTON SCOTT 

James Hamilton Scott, the seventh child and fifth 
son of Sarah Frances Branch and Major Frederick R. 
Scott, was born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 18th July, 1867. 

He graduated from the Stevens Institute of Technol- 
ogy, in Hoboken, New Jersey, and more lately became 
general manager of the Richmond Iron Works, in Rich- 
mond, Virginia, which position he retained through some 
six years. 

James Hamilton Scott died, in Richmond, Virginia, 
24th August, 1901. 

He married, nth October, 1893, Mary Wingfield, the 
only daughter of the Right Reverend J. H. D. Wingfield, 
Missionary Bishop of Northern California. They had 
issue : 

I. Mary Wingfield Scott, born 30th July, 1895. 

II. Frances Branch Scott, born 17th April, 1897; 
died 5th July, 1897. 

III. James Hamilton Scott, born 13th September, 
1898. 

GEORGE COLE SCOTT 
George Cole Scott, the ninth child and sixth son of 
Sarah Frances Branch and Major Frederick R. Scott, 
was born, in Richmond, Virginia, 23d June, 1875. 



BRANCHIANA 89 

He was graduated from Princeton, in 1898, with the 
degree of Civil Engineer, and from Columbia, in 1899, 
with the degree of Master of Arts. 

George Cole Scott married, 27th September, 1905, 
Harriet Hildreth Dunn, the daughter of Major Lanier 
Dunn. They have issue: 

I. Harriet Hildreth Scott, born 1st September, 
1906. 

JSlajor QTijomasi $Iummer 3Bratuf) 

Major Thomas Plummer Branch, the sixth child 
and fourth son of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride 
Read, was born, in Petersburg, 10th January, 1837. 

He received his early education in Petersburg, and at 
nineteen entered the University of Virginia, where he re- 
mained, however, only during the session of 1856-7, leav- 
ing college to return to Petersburg, and in that city to 
enter business with his father and two older brothers. 

Thomas Plummer Branch, at the outbreak of hostili- 
ties between the States, cast his fortunes with Virginia, 
enlisting as a private, in 1861, in a cavalry regiment 
which had been organized in Petersburg; and his war 
record henceforward may safely be described as one of 
unusual brilliancy. 

Prior to the mustering of his company into the Con- 
federate service, along with all of Virginia's troops, he 
served as commissary on Major N. B. Pegram's staff — 
who was at this period in command of Fort Powhatan, 
on James River ; and when his company was called to the 



9° BRANCHIANA 

field, served as a private, first in Nansemond County in 
Virginia, and more lately, under General J. B. Magruder, 
in the Peninsula. 

Thomas Plummer Branch was, in 1862, elected a 
Second Lieutenant in "Branch's Battery," which, as pre- 
viously recorded, had just been organized by his brother, 
Colonel James Read Branch, from the latter's former 
"Lee Guards." 

In the capacity of lieutenant, Thomas Plummer Branch 
served with conspicuous gallantry for about a year; and 
during this period bore a part in the Battle of Malvern 
Hill, and in the action at Marye's Height, commanded two 
guns. In addition, he served, under General E. P. Alex- 
ander, in the Battle of Fredericksburg, and in the Battle 
of Sharpsburg, as well as in many other minor engage- 
ments. 

Lieutenant Branch was, on 17th May, 1863, promoted 
to the rank of Major, as an Assistant Adjutant General, 
and was assigned to duty on the staff of General Robert 
Ransom, stationed just then in Richmond. 

As Major Branch, he served in West Virginia and in 
the eastern portion of Tennessee during the winter of 
1863-4; and was captured, May, 1864, in the fight at 
Drewry's Bluff on James River. 

He was thence transferred, as a prisoner of war, to 
Point Lookout, in Maryland, and afterward to Fort Dela- 
ware, immediately south of Philadelphia ; more lately still 
he was removed, with some six hundred other officers of 
the Confederate Army, and under a bitter fire from the 



BRANCHIANA. 91 

Charleston batteries, to a stockade on Sullivan's Island, 
which lies just opposite the town of Charleston, in South 
Carolina. And finally Major Branch was imprisoned at 
Fort Pulaski, near Savannah, in Georgia. 

Thomas Plummer Branch was, however, exchanged 
during the latter part of December, 1864; and re-entering 
the Confederate service, was, in the March of 1865, as- 
signed to duty on the staff of Lieutenant-General R. S. 
Ewell, who was then stationed in Richmond. 

But the war was now drawing to a close; and within 
less than a month, 2d April, 1865, General Ewell and his 
entire force had withdrawn from Richmond. Appomat- 
tox followed. 

Very shortly after the cessation of hostilities, Major 
Branch removed to Augusta, in Georgia, where he en- 
gaged in the cotton business. 

He married, 19th December, 1866, very soon after his 
settlement in Augusta, Effie Stovall, the daughter of 
Thomas Stovall of Georgia. Effie Stovall Branch, how- 
ever, died within six weeks of her marriage, so that by 
this first wife Thomas Plummer Branch had no issue. 

Major Thomas Plummer Branch married, second, on 
the 27th of April, 1871, Annie Irvine, the daughter of 
Reverend Doctor Robert Irvine of Augusta, in Georgia. 

The firm of Branch Sons and Company, which Thomas 
Plummer Branch — with his younger brother, Melville 
Irby Branch, now likewise a resident of Georgia — had 
established in Augusta, met, in the year 1879, with finan- 
cial embarrassments; but in 1880 the business was re- 
organized, and every obligation was discharged in full. 



92 BRANCHIANA 

For some twenty years thereafter Major Branch was 
known as one of the most prominent business men of 
the entire South. He was during this period the presi- 
dent of the Planters' Loan and Savings Bank, in 
Augusta, as well as of the former Merchants' and Farm- 
ers' National Bank, and of the Port Royal and Augusta 
Railroad. 

Thomas Plummer Branch died at Augusta, in the 
State of Georgia, in the May of 1900. 

He had married, first, as previously recorded, Effie 
Stovall, the daughter of Thomas Stovall of Georgia, by 
whom he had no issue. 

Thomas Plummer Branch married, second, as pre- 
viously recorded, Annie Irvine, daughter of Reverend 
Dr. Robert Irvine of Georgia. They had issue: 

I. Elizabeth Mary Orr Branch, born 6th Febru- 
ary, 1872. 

II. James Irvine Crombie Branch, born 226. De- 
cember, 1873; died 15th June, 1875. 

III. Annie Laird Branch, born 16th July, 1877. 

IV. Robert Irvine Branch, born 10th January, 
1879. 

V. Austin Thomas Plummer Branch, born 8th 
August, 1880. 

VI. Barrington Crombie Branch, born 10th Sep- 
tember, 1888. 



BRANCHIANA 93 

ELIZABETH MARY SIMONDS 
Elizabeth Mary Orr Branch, the first child and 

daughter of Major Thomas Plummer Branch and Annie 

Irvine, was born, in Augusta, Georgia, 6th February, 

1872. 
'She married, in Augusta, Georgia, 8th March, 1892, 

John Calhoun Simonds of Charleston in South Carolina. 
By John Calhoun Simonds, Elizabeth Mary Orr 

Branch has issue: 

I. Elizabeth Mary Branch Simonds, born 2d June, 
i895- 

II. John Calhoun Simonds, born 5th October, 1897. 

ANNIE LAIRD OSGOOD 

Annie Laird Branch, the third child and second 
daughter of Major Thomas Plummer Branch and Annie 
Irvine, was born, in Augusta, Georgia, 16th July, 1877. 

She married, in Augusta, Georgia, 17th November, 
1906, Edward Dana Osgood of Massachusetts. 

ROBERT IRVINE BRANCH 

Robert Irvine Branch, the fourth child and second 
son of Major Thomas Plummer Branch and Annie Ir- 
vine, was born, in Augusta, Georgia, 10th January, 1879. 

He graduated in 1898, with the degree of Bachelor 
of Arts, from the University of the South, Sewanee, 
Tennessee, and more lately entered business life in part- 
nership with his father. After the latter's death in 1900, 



94 BRANCHIANA 

he formed a partnership with his cousin Steiner Branch, 
the two organizing the firm of Branch and Company of 
Augusta, Georgia, and taking over the business of the 
Augusta Brick Company, formerly headed by Colonel 
George Alford Cunningham, and for a brief period by 
George Alford Cunningham, Jr. 

AUSTIN THOMAS PLUMMER BRANCH 

Austin Thomas Plummer Branch, the fifth child 
and third son of Major Thomas Plummer Branch and 
Annie Irvine, was born, in Augusta, Georgia, 8th Au- 
gust, 1880. 

He graduated in 1900, with the degree of Master of 
Arts, from the University of the South, Sewanee, Ten- 
nessee, and subsequently entered the Law School of the 
University of Virginia. He was admitted to the Vir- 
ginia bar, March, 1902, and to the Georgia bar in the 
November of the same year. 

He has since that time practiced law in Augusta, 
Georgia. 

BARRINGTON CROMBIE BRANCH 

Barrington Crombie Branch, the sixth child and 
fourth son of Major Thomas Plummer Branch and An- 
nie Irvine, was born, in Asheville, North Carolina, 10th 
September, 1888. 

He is to-day a student at the Peabody Conservatory of 
Music, in Baltimore, Maryland. 



BRANCHIANA 95 

4Warp Suattn JUrand) 

Mary Austin Branch, the seventh child and third 
daughter of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was 
born, in Petersburg, nth February, 1839. 

Mary Austin Branch survived both parents and died 
unmarried, in Richmond, Virginia, 29th May, 1900. 

Cmtlp fteab ikancfj 

Emily Read Branch, the eighth child and fourth 
daughter of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was 
born, in Petersburg, 9th April, 1841. 

She married in Petersburg, on 14th October, 1863, 
Colonel George Alford Cunningham of Alabama, then 
connected with the firm of Thomas Branch and Sons, of 
Petersburg, and afterward a resident of Augusta, Geor- 
gia. Colonel Cunningham died, in Richmond, Virginia, 
in May, 1905. 

By George Alford Cunningham of Alabama, Emily 
Read Branch had issue : 

I. Emily Annie Cunningham, born 20th August, 
1864. 

II. Branch Cunningham, born 23d July, 1866. 

III. George Alford Cunningham, born 3d Decem- 
ber, 1867. 

EMILY CUNNINGHAM LYMAN 
Emily Annie Cunningham, the first child and 
daughter of Emily Read Branch and Colonel George 
Alford Cunningham, was born 20th August, 1864. 



96 BRANCHIANA 

She married, in Richmond, Virginia, 25th January, 
1886, Theodore Benedict Lyman, the son of Bishop 
Theodore Benedict Lyman of California, and afterward 
of North Carolina. 

Emily Annie Cunningham died in Augusta, Georgia, 
28th September, 1894. 

By Theodore Benedict Lyman, Emily Annie Cunning- 
ham had issue: 

I. George Alford Cunningham Lyman, born 14th 
February, 1888; died in 1888. 

II. Emily Cunningham Lyman, born 29th May, 
1891. 

BRANCH CUNNINGHAM 

Branch Cunningham, the second child and first son 
of Emily Read Branch and Colonel George Alford Cun- 
ningham, was born 23 d July, 1866. 

He, on reaching manhood, engaged for a brief period 
in stock-raising in Albemarle County, in the State of 
Virginia. He subsequently removed to South Carolina. 

Branch Cunningham married, 7th December, 1890, 
Agnes Genin of New York, and by this marriage had 
no issue. 

He married, second, 6th July, 1900, Caroline Camp- 
bell, the daughter of William L. Campbell of South 
Carolina. They have issue: 

I. Emma Branch Cunningham, born November, 
1902. 



BRANCHIANA 97 

ill. Sarah Campbell Cunningham, bdrn August, 
1904. 

GEORGE ALFORD CUNNINGHAM 

George Alford Cunningham, the third child and 
second son of Emily Read Branch and Colonel George 
Alford Cunningham, was born 3d December, 1867. 

He was educated at Pantops Academy and at Wash- 
ington and Lee College, in Lexington, Virginia, and 
more lately became a civil engineer. He was for a long 
while stationed in Panama, and upon his return to 
America in 1894, succeeded his father as president of the 
Augusta Brick Company of Augusta, Georgia. 

Not long after his marriage he removed to New York 
City, and there resumed the practice of his original pro- 
fession. He is to-day stationed in Alaska. 

George Alford Cunningham married, in Augusta, 
Georgia, 25th January, 1898, Lewis Butts, the daughter 
of John D. Butts of Georgia. They had issue: 

I. George Alford Cunningham, born 4th March, 
1899. 

Pettte 3Rosialama Prantfr 

Bettie Rosalama Branch, the ninth child and fifth 
daughter of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was 
born, in Petersburg, Virginia, 19th March, 1843. 

She married Judge Benjamin T. Suttle of Stafford 
County, in Virginia, and died at her father's residence 
in Richmond on 7th April, 1876. 

Bettie Rosalama Branch died without issue. 



98 BRANCHIANA 

Militant gfobfeon Ifavmct) 

William Addison Branch, the tenth child and fifth 
son of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was born, 
in Petersburg, 26th April, 1845. 

At the outbreak of the Civil War he enlisted, under 
his brother, Colonel James Read Branch, in the Con- 
federate Army, and served throughout the conflict with 
distinction. 

Very shortly after the conclusion of hostilities Wil- 
liam Addison Branch emigrated to the West, where he 
resided for some years as a well-known ranchman. 

He died in California in the November of 1880. 

William Addison Branch had never married and died 
without issue. 

MtMUt 3h*p Pranc!) 

Melville Ikby Branch, the eleventh child and sixth 
son of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was born, 
in Petersburg, 18th February, 1847. 

He received his introductory education in and about 
Petersburg, but in 1863, at the age of sixteen, left school 
to join the Confederate Army. 

He had been, in the November of 1864, appointed by 
Governor Greenlee D. Letcher of Virginia a cadet to 
the Virginia Military Institute, which, at that time, was 
stationed in Richmond. And in consequence, after the 
Civil War, Melville Irby Branch resumed his interrupted 
studies at the Virginia Military Institute, where he 
graduated in 1868. 



BRANCHIANA 99 

He removed in the same year to Augusta, in Georgia, 
where, as previously recorded, he engaged in the mer- 
cantile business, in partnership with his elder brother, 
Major Thomas Plummer Branch. In Augusta, in the 
November of 1870, Melville Irby Branch married Susan 
Wilhelmina Steiner, the daughter of John J. Steiner of 
Ohio, and formerly of Frederick, Maryland. 

Subsequently, in 1876, he removed to Columbia Coun- 
ty, in Georgia, and adopting the pursuit of farming, 
settled near Berzelia. His latter residence is known as 
"Steindorf Farm." 

For six years Melville Irby Branch has served in the 
Legislature of Georgia. 

Melville Irby Branch, as previously recorded, married 
Susan Wilhelmina Steiner, the daughter of John J. 
Steiner of Ohio. They have issue. 

I. Henry Steiner Branch, born 1st October, 1871. 

II. Melville Campbell Branch, born 24th Janu- 
ary, 1875. 

III. Steiner Branch, born 7th February, 1878. 

HENRY STEINER BRANCH 

Henry Steiner Branch, the first child and son of 
Melville Irby Branch and Susan Wilhelmina Steiner, 
was born 1st October, 1871. 

On completing his education he was for a while con- 
nected with the Southern Railway, but eventually re- 
moved to Berzelia, in Columbia County, Georgia, and 



ioo , BRANCHIANA 

engaged in partnership with his father, in farming at 
large and more particularly in fruit-raising. 

MELVILLE CAMPBELL BRANCH 
Melville Campbell Branch, the second child and 
son of Melville Irby Branch and Susan Wilhelmina 
Steiner, was born 24th January, 1875. 

He settled early in life in Richmond, Virginia, and 
in that city entered the offices of Thomas Branch and 
Company. His business ability there won for him rapid 
promotion, and he was in 1906 admitted to a partnership 
in that well-known firm. 

STEINER BRANCH 

Steiner Branch, the third child and son of Mel- 
ville Irby Branch and Susan Wilhelmina Steiner, was 
born 7th February, 1878. 

He at first entered business life with his cousin, Rob- 
ert Irvine Branch, the two organizing the firm of Branch 
and Company of Augusta, Georgia, as previously re- 
corded. He more lately established his plantation of 
"Katocton," near Grovetown, Georgia, where Steiner 
Branch resides to-day. 

He married, 2d January, 1902, his cousin, Mary Al- 
ston Steiner. They have issue : 

I. Sue Steiner Branch, born 18th June, 1903. 

Cugene llrancf) 

Eugene Branch, the twelfth child and seventh son of 
Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was born, in 
Petersburg, in the June of 1851. 



BRANCHIANA 101 

The boy died in early infancy, expiring in the Sep- 
tember of the same year. 

W&ttp $aul Prancfj 

D'Arcy Paul Branch, the thirteenth child and eighth 
son of Thomas Branch and Sarah Pride Read, was born, 
in Petersburg, in the February of 1854. 

D'Arcy Paul Branch, like his preceding brother, was 
short-lived and died in the June of 1854. 

Carter ©Hfjeelrigftt Prancfj 

Carter Wheelright Branch, the first child and son 
of Thomas Branch and Anne Adams Wheelright, was 
born, in Petersburg, 13th August, 1858. 

He received his earlier education in Petersburg, Rich- 
mond, and subsequently at the Virginia Military Insti- 
tute, in Lexington, Virginia. 

On reaching maturity, Carter Wheelright Branch en- 
tered business with his father, and more lately estab- 
lished the brokerage firm of C. W. Branch and Com- 
pany, which, since the admission of H. Landon Cabell 
to a partnership, has been known as Branch, Cabell and 
Company of Richmond, in Virginia. 

JWtrtam Prancf) 

Miriam Branch, the second child and first daughter 
of Thomas Branch and Anne Adams Wheelright, was 
born, in Petersburg, 31st January, 1861. 



102 BRANCHIANA 

Miriam Branch married, on 19th November, 1884, 
Colonel Barton Haxall Grundy of Richmond, in Vir- 
ginia. They have issue : 

I. Thomas Branch Grundy, born 6th April, 1886; 
died 1st February, 1904. 

II. Barton Haxall Grundy, born 30th March, 1888. 

III. Anne Wheelright Grundy, born 25th April, 
1890; died 8th September, 1890. 

IV. Carter Branch Grundy, born 8th July, 1891. 

V. Miriam Branch Grundy, born 21st December, 
1892. 

VI. Charles Miller Grundy, born 23d February, 
1897; died 23d May, 1897. 

Carolina Ptrancft 

Carolina Branch, the third child and second daugh- 
ter of Thomas Branch and Anne Adams Wheelright, 
was born, at Jones's Springs, in North Carolina, nth 
July, 1862. 



Wt)t WMt of Cfjristopfjer Pranrfj of 
&mgglano 



QH)e WLik of Cfjrtetopfjer prancf) of 
Hingalanb 

Concerning the wife of Christopher Branch of " Kings- 
land " very little is known, save that her Christian name 
was Mary, and that he married her in England, prior to 
the year 1619. 

Mary Branch accompanied her husband in his voyage 
to Virginia, as is explicitly shown by the aforemen- 
tioned "Muster of the Inhabitants in Virginia," taken 
January, 1624-5, which names among those living at the 
College Land in Henrico: 

'"Christopher Branch, came in the London Marchannt. 

" Mary, his wife, in the same Shipp. 

" Thomas, his sonne, aged 9 Months." 

Now, the London Merchant, so far as is recorded, made 
but one voyage to Virginia, sailing in the March of 1619- 
20 ; so that this muster, in itself, enables one to determine 
the exact date of Christopher Branch's emigration, as well 
as the fact that he had married previous to the year 1620. 

It is worthy of note that the colonists, "at this first send- 
ing," were all "single men, unmarried," except "some few 
to be sent for planting the College Land," of which num- 
ber Christopher Branch of •' Kingsland " evidently made 
one. 

It is presumable that Mary Branch had borne her hus- 



106 BRANCHIANA 

band an older child than this Thomas Branch, and that 
this child had succumbed, as indeed did a majority of the 
colonists' children, to the Famine Winter of 1622. 

Mary Branch bore at least two other sons, William 
Branch of Henrico, and Christopher Branch of Charles 
City, and died long before her husband — apparently about 
1630. 



Hfyt WLiit of Cfcrfetopfjer Pranri) of CfmrleS 

Citp 



HDfje OTtfeof Cfcrfetopfjer Prancfj ot Cfjarlea 

Cttp 

Owing to the total destruction of the earlier Charles 
City records, nothing very definite is known concerning 
the wife of Christopher Branch of Charles City, save that 
he married her ante 1658, and that she bore her husband 
three sons — Christopher Branch, Samuel Branch, and 
Benjamin Branch, all of Henrico — and presumably did 
not long survive her husband's premature death in 1665. 



GH)e Wiiit of penjamm ^rancf) of Henrico 



W$t Wife of benjamin prancf) of Henrico 

Benjamin Branch of Henrico married, about 1695, 
Tabitha Osborne, the oldest child and daughter of Edward 
Osborne of Henrico. 

Tabitha Osborne was born about 1677, and had by 
her first husband, apparently, but one child, Benjamin 
Branch of Chesterfield ; and after the death of Benjamin 
Branch of Henrico, she re-married, ante 171 1, taking for 
her second husband Thomas Cheatham of Henrico, by 
whom it is not recorded that she left any issue. 

Captain (Efjomass ©sftsorne of Coxenbale 

Tabitha Osborne was a descendant of 

Captain Thomas Osborne of Coxendale, in Henrico. 
This county, it is necessary to repeat, then comprised all 
the land west of Charles City between the Chickahominy 
and the Appomattox. 

Thomas Osborne was born in England, about the year 
1590, but left England for the Colony of Virginia in 1619, 
sailing in "the Bona Nova, of 200 tons, sent August, 1619, 
with 120 persons"; as the records of the company have 
it, "in the beginning of August last, in the Bona Nova, 
were sent 100 persons for public service, chosen with 
great care and extraordinarily furnished," — all of these 
persons being future colonists, "fifty for the Company's 
land and fifty for the College Land." 



ii 4 BRANCHIANA 

The voyage was leisurely but prosperous ; and the Mus- 
ter of 16th February, 1623-4, mentions Thomas Osborne 
as living at the College Land. 

And, again, the Muster of January, 1624-5, enumerates 
among the inhabitants of the College Land : 

" Lietennt Thomas Osborne, arrived in the Bona Nova, 
1619. 

SERVANTS 

" Daniell Sherley, aged 30 yeres, came in the Bona 
Nova, 1619. 

" Peeter Jordan, aged 22, in the London Merchant, 1620. 

" Richard Davis, aged 16 yeres, in the Jonathan, 1620." 

The title of lieutenant, acquired one knows not how in 
England, was more lately exchanged for a captaincy, on 
4th July, 1627, by virtue of a commission granted by Sir 
George Yeardley, then Governor of Virginia. For, as a 
retaliatory measure, the Governor at this time "thought it 
fitt that we should draw out partyes from all our planta- 
tions & goe uppon the Indians & cut downe their come ;" 
and in consequence, upon the date aforementioned, "Lef- 
tenant Thomas Osborne" was appointed by the Governor 
to lead the settlers of "the necke of land and the College 
Land" against the tribes of the Saax Powhattans. 

History does not detail the results of this expedition, 
but it was thereby that Thomas Osborne acquired the title 
of captain, which he retained for the remainder of his 
long life. 

Meantime, Thomas Osborne had settled, in the year 
1625, at "Coxendale," on the south side of James River, 




P/ ? ^a^^6 



I ' ' 



BRANCHIANA 115 

in the extreme northeast of the present Chesterfield 
County, and corresponding to the present "Cox's Dale." 

Christopher Branch's plantation of "Kingsland," — 
which he patented, as recorded, in 1635, — lay immediately 
north of "Coxendale," being separated from it by Proc- 
tor's Creek ; and it is not unnatural that this close prox- 
imity in a sparsely-settled country should have resulted 
in many marriages between the families of Branch and 
Osborne. 

Christopher Branch of " Kingsland " and Captain 
Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" were near neighbors 
for some thirty-odd years, and presumably — if one allows 
for the slight disparity in their ages — on terms of con- 
siderable intimacy ; they grew from obscurity to affluence 
and prominence together, and year by year, as the one 
patented land to the north of Proctor's Creek the other 
would patent land to the south of it, till presently the twin 
plantations of " Kingsland " and "Coxendale" had grown 
to rank among the largest in all southern Henrico. 

Captain Thomas Osborne held in his day many posi- 
tions of honor. In the year 1629 he represented Henrico 
(with Christopher Branch of " Kingsland ") in the Vir- 
ginia House of Burgesses; and (again with Christopher 
Branch of " Kingsland ") was one of the viewers of 
tobacco "from the World's End to Henrico" in 1639. 
Always the two men are somehow bracketed together. 

In addition, Captain Thomas Osborne was "commis- 
sioner for the upper parts of Henrico" in 1631, and a 
member of the Virginia House of Burgesses for the years 
1630-31-32-33. 



n6 BRANCHIANA 

The last attested act of Captain Thomas Osborne was 
to take out yet another patent of land on Proctor's Creek 
in 1637; but it is known that he survived until, at least, 
5th November, 1667, at which date Captain Thomas Os- 
borne of "Coxendale" assigned to Thomas Lockett of 
Henrico all rights for the transportation of Alexander 
Wood to this country — which would have entitled Cap- 
tain Thomas Osborne to some fifty acres of land. 

All record of the deed itself has perished, but it is 
alluded to in a much later deed, when, on 24th of Decem- 
ber, 1682, the same Thomas Lockett transferred the same 
rights to Thomas Burton, and by a casual parenthesis en- 
abled us to determine that Captain Thomas Osborne of 
"Coxendale" was alive as late as 1667; and of Captain 
Thomas Osborne there is in the scant records of the time 
no further mention. 

Nor is there in the Virginia records at any time even a 
casual mention of his wife. A legitimate son, one Thomas 
or Edward Osborne, and born before 1620, Captain 
Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" had beyond question; 
and inasmuch as Captain Thomas Osborne of "Coxen- 
dale" brought no wife or child to Virginia in 1619, and 
was at the period of his emigration a man of thirty or 
upwards, it is not extravagant to suppose that the wife of 
Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" had died before this, in 
England, and that he subsequently sent back to England 
for his only son, since that son attestedly was living in 
Virginia before the year 1640. 

The will of Captain Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" 



BRANCHIANA 117 

is not recorded at Henrico Court-House. A will he indis- 
putably left, apportioning his estate between his two 
grandsons, and inasmuch as the county records of Henrico 
previous to the year 1677 have perished, and from that 
year exist in tolerable fullness, the fact is pretty clearly 
established that Captain Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" 
died before 1678 ; and, as has been previously shown, later 
than the November of 1667. 

He had issue, so far as known, only one child, a son, 
whom he survived. 

(Cbtoarb) ©sfoortte of Henrico 

This only son of Captain Thomas Osborne of "Coxen- 
dale" was, perhaps, the 

Thomas Osborne of "Pasbeheighes," referred to in 
the " Muster of the Inhabitants of Pasbehays, belonging 
to the corporation of James City, and in the maine," taken 
30th January, 1624-5. 

This mentions among "The men of the Governor's Men 
at Pasbehaighs" one 

" Thomas Osborn, aged 18 (came to Virginia), in the 
Francis Bonaventure." 

And a word of explanation is here necessary: The 
thrifty Virginia Company of London had hit upon the 
scheme of providing for the Governor of Virginia's salary, 
"so as to ease the Company henceforward of all charge 
in maintaining him," by assigning to the Governor some 
3,000 acres, which cost the company nothing, and pro- 
curing tenants (at a rate of six pounds each to the com- 



n8 BRANCHIANA 

pany, which was the cost of their transportation), to farm 
these assigned acres, with the understanding that one-half 
the revenue of these tenants was to go to the Governor. 

Eighty of these "Governor's men" were sent to Vir- 
ginia in 1620, the Bonaventure transporting some of them, 
and it is possible that Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" 
embraced this opportunity of securing free transportation 
for his heir, and that his son and this Thomas Osborne 
of " Pasbehaighes" were one and the same person. 

This is possible, but no more ; for, upon the other hand, 
it appears unlikely that any one in the comfortable cir- 
cumstances which Captain Thomas Osborne beyond 
doubt already boasted should have bound over his only 
son to a quasi-slaveryhood ; and the probabilities are 
rather in favor of this son of Captain Thomas Osborne 
having been the 

Edward Osborne of Henrico who patented (2nd June, 
1636) some 400 acres of land in Henrico County — "ad- 
joining a swamp called the great swamp, and the river" — 
fifty acres of the same being due for his personal adven- 
ture, and 350 acres for the transportation of seven 
persons. 

This is the sole mention that now exists of this Edward 
Osborne, and his will, if it was ever probated, lias perished 
with the earlier records of Henrico. 

The son of Captain Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale," 
whatever may have been his Christian name, died in Vir- 
ginia about the year 1650 — certainly not earlier than 
164(3 — having had issue: 



BRANCHIANA 119 

I. Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale," born 1641, with 
whom we shall hereafter have to do. 

II. Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

Cbtoarb <&sftorne of Henrico 

Edward Osborne of Henrico, the younger son of the 
foregoing, was born in 1646. 

At the death of Captain Thomas Osborne of "Coxen- 
dale," his estate was divided between his two grandsons — 
both of whom had survived their father — in what propor- 
tion it is impossible to say, although it is apparent that 
to Edward Osborne's share fell the northern part of the 
plantation. 

He appears to have farmed it prosperously, and to 
have increased its dimensions; and the last act recorded 
of Edward Osborne is that within the last year of his 
life, on 1st of June, 1696, he purchased some 200 acres of 
the southern portion of "Coxendale," which his elder 
brother, now dead, had inherited, and had long ago deeded 
to his own eldest son. 

It is not recorded that Edward Osborne of Henrico 
ever held any political office or took any part in public life. 

He died about the beginning of the year 1697, and it is 
to be regretted that the ambiguous wording of his will 
prevents estimation of what lands he then possessed, since 
he was undoubtedly well-to-do in the world. 

Edward Osborne of Henrico married, prior to 1676, 
Tabitha Piatt, the daughter of Gilbert Piatt of " Fauld- 
inge," in Virginia, whom he survived. 



120 BRANCHIANA 

By Tabitha Piatt, Edward Osborne of Henrico had 
issue: 

I. Tabitha Osborne, who, as previously recorded, 
married Benjamin Branch of Henrico. 

II. Edward Osborne of Henrico, born post 1677, and 
died in 1732, leaving issue. 

III. Martha Osborne. 

The will of Edward Osborne of Henrico County, in the 
Parish of Varina, is recorded at Henrico Court-House. 
It is dated 6th of January, 1696, and was recorded 1st of 
April, 1697. 

To the testator's son, Edward Osborne, is bequeathed 
"all my lands in generall," which is an unhappily ambig- 
uous wording as concerns the genealogist. 

To this only son is also bequeathed a bewildering 
enumeration of miscellaneous chattels : 

' r One negro woman named Moll, with her increase (ex- 
cepting the first child she bringeth, which I give to my 
daughter, Martha Osborne), and one negro boy named 
Tom, and three cows, not above six years old, and two 
feather beds, and their furniture, and one square musled 
gun with a French lock, and my little gunn, and two 
young sows, with pigg, and one pott of four or five gal- 
lons, and one small pott of two and a half gallons (both 
iron potts with hooks), and one pair of Running Iron 
Racks, and my best chest with lock and key, and two 
horses, one of seven years and the other of three years, 



BRANCHIANA 121 

and three large and two small puter dishes, and ten plates 
of pewter, and four Ewes, and two new Calfskin Cheirs, 
and one brass skimmer and ladle, and one Coller-harness 
and Cart saddle." 

All of this is to be delivered to the younger Edward 
Osborne when he reaches the age of nineteen. 

To the testator's daughter, Martha Osborne, is be- 
queathed in similar fashion. 

" Two cowes and a heifer of two years, and one steer 
of four years, and two Ewes, and three deep puter dishes, 
and one Feether bed, and an old Rugg, and blankets half- 
worn, and one great chest with lock and key, and my 
small new chest with lock and key." 

All this is to be delivered to Martha Osborne when she 
reaches the age of sixteen, or if she marry earlier, upon 
her wedding-day. This stipulation shows very vividly 
how Oriental was the age of marriage among our early 
Virginians. 

The testator's daughter, Tabitha Osborne Branch, now 
married to Benjamin Branch of Henrico, is not mentioned 
in the will, and it is deducible that the testator had pre- 
viously provided for her; but the testator appoints his 
son-in-law, Benjamin Branch, to be his executor, to him 
"committing the tuishion of Edward Osborne and Martha 
Osborne" until the boy shall be nineteen and the girl six- 
teen, or until either of them shall marry. 

The witnesses of this will are Samuel Branch (the 
brother of Benjamin Branch of Henrico), and Martha 
Osborne (the widow of the testator's older brother), and 
Joseph Tanner (the half-brother of the testator's wife). 



122 BRANCHIANA 

(Eabttfta $Iatt <&&botne 

About 1675, Edward Osborne of Henrico married, as 
previously recorded, Tabitha Piatt, the daughter of Gil- 
bert Piatt of "Fauldinge." 

Tabitha Platt Osborne was born about 1660, and 
died between the years 1692 and 1695, being survived by 
her husband. 

To him, as recorded, she had borne two daughters and 
a son. 

(gilbert fHatt of Jf aulbinge 

This Tabitha Platt was the daughter of 

Gilbert Platt of " Fauldinge," who was born in Eng- 
land about 1620. 

The first mention of Gilbert Platt occurs 12th of Feb- 
ruary, 1635, when Elizabeth Parker, a widow, patented 
200 acres at Varina within the County of Henrico. Of 
this land one hundred acres were due to her "in right of 
her first husband, William Sharpe, who was an ancient 
planter in the time of Sir Thomas Dale," and the remain- 
ing hundred for '^the importation of two servants, Gilbert 
Platt and John Newman." 

Gilbert Platt thus came to Virginia in an exceedingly 
humble capacity; and concerning the first forty years of 
his stay in the Colony no record exists. 

But about 1660, at latest, he had risen somewhat in the 
world, and had married a woman well-to-do in her own 
right — Mary Tanner, the widow of Joseph Tanner of 
Henrico — and was appointed, 20th of August, 1677, the 



BRANCHIANA 123 

legal guardian of her four children, Joseph, Edward, 
Mary and Martha Tanner. 

Yet Piatt himself appears always to have been a person 
of small means; even the plantation of " Fauldinge" (or 
"Bauldings," as is written with equal frequency) which 
Gilbert Piatt hereafter farmed, was but a portion of the 
estate left by his wife's first husband, and held by Gilbert 
Piatt in trust for the Tanner children during their im- 
maturity; and the records of Henrico strikingly attest 
that his domestic life during this period was far from 
tranquil. 

He first appears at variance with his wife over a portion 
of Gilbert Piatt's own estate, which by a deed dated 1st 
of June, 1680, Gilbert Piatt had made over to her. The 
narture of their dispute is now undeterminable, but the 
affair, which was aired in the Henrico courts, and some- 
how settled there, was presumably the origin of yet fur- 
ther hearthside trouble for Gilbert Piatt of " Fauldinge." 

For his wife's son by her former marriage — her elder 
son, one Joseph Tanner — was by this a full-grown man ; 
and by the August of the same year Joseph Tanner and 
his stepfather had come to physical violence. There are 
pages of depositions by those who witnessed the difficulty, 
but of these that of "John Seawood, aged about twenty- 
four," is perhaps the most complete and curious. 

Here follows an abridgement of the same. It appears 
that as Gilbert Piatt came home one evening Joseph Tan- 
ner, son to Mrs. Piatt, who was splitting kindling wood 
somewhere near the door of the house — for some unex- 



i2 4 BRANCHIANA 

plained cause, and perhaps merely in fun — threw three or 
four pieces of lightwood at his stepfather; and that the 
latter passed on into the house, and there complained to 
his wife of the treatment he had received, and for his 
pains was promptly called a liar, since, as Mrs. Piatt ex- 
plained, she had reared her children so carefully that in 
common reason none of them would ever have been guilty 
of such outrageous conduct. Upon the heels of this, 
young Joseph Tanner came into the room, and accused 
his stepfather of having slandered him at a certain Mrs. 
Farrar's. 

What followed is here cited in full : 

" And Mr. Piatt said : 

" 'Come, lett us have a box or two,' and the said Joseph 
replyed : 

"'Noe, but let me get a tobo: sticke (a tobacco stick), 
and then I will box with you,' and told the said Piatt that 
he had nothing to doe with the house. 

"And Mr. Piatt said: 

" 'I built the house, and I paid for it' ; and Joseph said : 

" 'Well, what if you have ? you shan't come into the 
house,' and Mr. Piatt said: 

" 'And you shall see I have something to doe with the 
house, for I will goe and pull down one of the puncheons 
before your face,' and Joseph told him that when he had 
done splitting of lightwood he would follow him, and 
when he had done he catcht up a stake, and followed him, 
and strucke at him with the stake, and he fell downe, and 
lay a good while, and Joseph said: 



BRANCHIANA 125 

" 'Noe, you have nothing to doe with it ; you thinke to 
scare me with your bull-beggers (bug-bears?) ; goe, and 
tell them, if you will; here's adoe (here's an ado?) with 
an old cockatrice !' " 

There is some ambiguity as to how this affair was set- 
tled ; but the evidence plainly points to strained relations 
among the members of Gilbert Piatt's domicile, in which 
Gilbert Piatt evidently got the worst of it; for on the 
twenty-eighth of the following March, according to a 
deed by him acknowledged in court, on the 1st of April, 
1681, "Gilbert Piatt resigns to Joseph, Edward, Mary and 
Martha, orphans of Joseph Tanner, deceased, all his rights 
to their plantation at ' Bauldings,' and engages never to 
trouble them for any thirds or any part thereof." 

Plainly, the older Joseph Tanner had died intestate; and 
should Mary Piatt die before her second husband he 
would" be entitled to some share in her widow's third ; 
and it is into an explicit renunciation of this right that 
Mary Piatt and her children have hectored him. 

Gilbert Piatt deserted them very shortly. He was dis- 
charged of his trusteeship of " Fauldinge" 1st of October, 
1683, and Joseph Tanner was appointed in his place ; and 
Gilbert Piatt appears to have spent the last years of his 
life, being then in very ill health, with his son-in-law, 
Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

It was at the residence of Edward Osborne that Gilbert 
Piatt died in the spring of 1692. 

The will of Gilbert Piatt aforetime of " Fauldinge," in 
Henrico County, is recorded at Henrico Court-House; it 



126 BRANCHIANA 

is dated ioth April, 1691, and was recorded 1st June, 
1692 ; and it is a laconic document. 

The testator bequeaths to his wife, Mary Piatt, pre- 
cisely one shilling. The legacy is eloquent. 

To the testator's daughter, Tabitha Osborne, is be- 
queathed " my bed and what is belonging to it." 

And for the rest it is to his son-in-law, Edward Osborne 
of Henrico, that Gilbert Piatt unconditionally bequeaths 
"everything else that properly belongs unto me, for and 
in consideration of his trouble and the care he hath taken 
of me in my sickness." 

By his disastrous marriage with Mary (Brown?) Tan- 
ner, Gilbert Piatt of " Fauldinge" had issue : 

I. Tabitha Platt, who, as previously recorded, mar- 
ried Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

Jflarp (Proton) patt 

The wife of Gilbert Piatt of Henrico, as previously 
recorded, was by her first marriage the widow of Joseph 
Tanner of Henrico, and it is probable that her maiden 
name was 

Mary Brown, inasmuch as William and Mary Col- 
lege, in 1699, brought its aforementioned suit against 
Benjamin Branch of Henrico, "as the executor of Edward 
Osborne, who married the executor of John Brown." 
This same John Brown was presumably the father of Gil- 
bert Piatt's wife; and she had at least one sister, Martha 
(Brown?) Stratton, who was the second wife of Edward 
Stratton of Henrico, and died in 1696. 



BRANCHIANA 127 

The will of this Martha Stratton, who survived her hus- 
band, is dated 24th of July, 1692, and was recorded at 
Henrico Court- House 1st April, 1696; it mentions the 
testator's "Sister (Mary) Piatt," and "her daughter, 
(Mary) Liggon," and appoints the former to be the ex- 
ecutrix of the estate — which was not large. 

To Mary Piatt is left "the best pair of Bodices except 
one that I have, and my pedicoats w'ch I spun, and my 
specticles, and my yellow waistcoats." 

On 30th April, 1687 (the deed being recorded on 1st 
June of the same year), Mary Piatt signed a release claim 
upon such portion of her first husband's estate as had 
been willed to her second son, Edward Tanner of Hen- 
rico. It is not presumable that Edward Tanner had just 
come of age ; but, in any event, he has inherited from his 
father's estate "some 200 and odde acres"; and in con- 
sideration of his mother's relinquishing all claim to the 
property he is to pay her "twenty shillings a year in 
money, or in tobacco, at a penny a pound, for seven 
years, or till Mary Piatt's death." 

Mary (Brown?) Piatt, the wife of Gilbert Piatt of 
"Fauldinge," was (according to her sworn statement on 
qualifying as her sister Martha Stratton's executrix), 
born in 1638. She died in 1699, having survived two 
husbands. 

Mary (Brown?) married first, as has been said, Joseph 
Tanner of Henrico, who died about 1659, and by him had 
issue : 

I. Joseph Tanner, who married the widow of Mat- 
thew Turpin, and died ante 1699. 



128 BRANCHIANA 

II. Edward Tanner, who survived his mother. 

III. Mary Tanner, who married Joseph Liggon of 
Henrico, and by him left issue. 

IV. Martha Tanner, who married, first, Thomas 

Jones of Bermuda Hundreds, and, second, Haskins ; 

and by her first marriage left issue. 

Mary (Brown?), by her second and not over-happy 
marriage with Gilbert Piatt of " Fauldinge," had issue 
only one child : 

I. Tabitha Platt, who, as previously recorded, mar- 
ried Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

The widow of Gilbert Platt survived her second hus- 
band by some eight years, dying in 1699. 

The will of Mary Platt is dated 18th of March, 1699, 
and was recorded at Henrico Court-House 1st of Feb- 
ruary, 1 699- 1 700. 

It bequeaths to the testator's son, Edward Tanner, all 
cattle belonging to the testator which he has in his pos- 
session, and, in addition, twelve pounds in current money ; 
and to the testator's grandson, Joseph Liggon, some 200 
acres of land in Henrico County, on Swift Creek. 

The other legacies are inconsiderable ; and the document 
is chiefly valuable as mentioning the testator's daughters 
Martha Haskins and Mary Liggon — who is named as ex- 
ecutrix — and the testator's grandchildren, Thomas Jones 
(the son of Martha Haskins by her first marriage), and 
Joseph Liggon, Phoebe Liggon, and Lucretia Liggon, who 
were the children of Mary Tanner Liggon, the testator's 
oldest daughter. 



®%e WBiit of Penjamm Prattcf) of 
Cfjesfcrftelo 



W$t Wiik of benjamin Prancf) of 
Cfjesiterfielb 

Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield married, prior to 
the year 1727, his second cousin, Martha Osborne, the 
daughter of Thomas Osborne of Henrico. She was born 
about 1710, and died before the year 1760. 
This Martha Osborne was a descendant of 
Captain Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale," who, as 
previously recorded, had issue : 

I. (Edward?) Osborne of Henrico. 
(Edward?) Osborne of Henrico, as previously re- 
corded, had issue: 

I. Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale." 

II. Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

gpfjomag 0ebotnt of Coxenbale 

Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" was the older son of 
his father, (Edward?) Osborne of Henrico, and was born 
in the year 1641. 

To his share fell the lower portion of his grandfather's 
estate, which portion was presumably the larger of the 
two, and in consequence, retained the name of "Coxen- 
dale." 

This Thomas Osborne, though he took no prominent 



1 32 BRANCHIANA. 

part in public affairs, was, whether it were by inheritance 
or acquisition, at his death, in 1692, a man of substance; 
his land-holdings were by inheritance extensive, and he 
had added to them continuously ; and his last act, so far 
as is known, was, in 1690, to patent an additional ninety- 
five acres. 

The furnishings of his house and farm were valued at 
208 pounds, fifteen shillings and eleven pence — which ap- 
proximated to a present-day value of some $10,000; and, 
in addition, there is an item in his inventory which hints 
at a distinct literary taste rather unusual for his neighbor- 
hood and period: 

"A parcel of old books, viz., 1 large Q'rto Bible, Jose- 

phus in folio, and 5 or 6 or do valued at one 

pound, six pence." 

For the time and locality this is the collection of a bib- 
liomaniac. 

Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" at his death left 

1692. He had married Martha , whose maiden name 

is unknown. 

Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale " at his death left 
issue : 

I. Thomas Osborne of the Parish and County of 
Henrico. 

II. John Osborne, born post 1674. 

The will of Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" is re- 
corded at Henrico Court-House. It is dated 2d of Octo- 
ber, 1691, and was recorded 1st June, 1692. 



BRANCHIANA 133 

It is evident from a perusal of the document that the 
testator has already given his older son and namesake 
such lands and personal property as he intends that son to 
have ; of the latter it is impossible to swear to more than 
four silver spoons, but one may reasonably imagine that 
the gift was somewhat larger ; and the lands assigned the 
younger Thomas Osborne, as was latterly attested by a 
deed which this Thomas Osborne gave in 1696, lay to the 
north of his father's possessions, and adjoined those of 
the testator's brother, Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

To the testator's second son, John Osborne, is be- 
queathed 200 acres of "my plantation called 'Fearing,' 
alias 'Coxendale,' on condition that a hundred of these 
acres adjoin "the land where my son, Thomas Osborne, 
now liveth," and that the other hundred be laid out so as 
to adjoin both "the land where Philip Turpin lives" and 
be "conjoined to the land I lately patented, where William 
Bass lives," which land contained, by estimation, some 
ninety-five acres ; and this land also is bequeathed to John 
Osborne. 

To the testator's older son is bequeathed "one negro, 
unless I give it to him during my lifetime," and two silver 
spoons, "of ye same sort whereof he hath had four 
already." And it is rendered apparent that a part at least 
of the younger Thomas Osborne's lands have been merely 
loaned him, for he is to retain his present home merely 
during the lifetime of the testator's wife; yet there is no 
provision for its subsequent disposal after that event. In- 
deed, the entire document has a haphazard air, and a re- 



i 3 4 BRANCHIANA 

arrangement of its several clauses is necessary to render 
it even partially intelligible. 

To the testator's wife, Martha Osborne, is bequeathed 
"the house where I now live, and my orchard," and the 
testator's wife is appointed his executrix. 

The remainder of the estate — lands, slaves and chat- 
tels — is to be divided between John Osborne and Martha 
Osborne equally ; and if John Osborne chance to die be- 
fore reaching the age of eighteen, two-thirds of the estate 
is to go to Martha Osborne, and one-third to the testator's 
elder son, Thomas Osborne of Henrico, "or his heir, if a 
male, and not else." And at eighteen John Osborne is by 
the testator authorized to make a will and to dispose of 
the property assigned him as he may elect. 

No provision is made for the event of Thomas 
Osborne's having only female children, nor for Martha 
Osborne's dying before John Osborne reaches eighteen, 
nor for Thomas Osborne's dying before Martha Osborne ; 
everywhere one scents an abysmal unpracticality which 
renders it the more astounding that Thomas Osborne of 
"Coxendale" ended his life, as he unquestionably did, a 
far wealthier man than he began it ; and that the will did 
not result in a lawsuit must be imputed to the direct in- 
tervention of blind chance. 

The witnesses of the document are Thomas Jefferson 
(who married the granddaughter of Christopher Branch 
of " Kingsland "), and Philip Turpin, and Samuel Branch 
(the grandson of Christopher Branch of " Kingsland "), 
and Samuel Hickman. 



BRANCHIANA 135 

By an inventory, taken 1st of October, 1692, the chat- 
tels of Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale," as previously re- 
corded, were valued at 208 pounds, fifteen shillings and 
eleven pence. 

Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" had, as previously re- 
corded, married Martha , who survived her hus- 
band, and married Thomas Edwards of Henrico within 
a year of Thomas Osborne's death — before 20th August, 
1692, when she and Thomas Osborne of Henrico asked 
the court to appoint an appraiser for the estate of Thomas 
Osborne of "Coxendale," deceased. 

This was done 1st of September, 1692, the appraisers 
being Captain William Randolph, Captain Francis Epes, 
Captain William Farrar and Henry Randolph. 

QE$omag ©stoorne of Henrico 

Thomas Osbobne of the Parish and County of Henri- 
co, the older son of Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" and 

Martha , as evidenced by his father's will, was a man 

grown and managing his own plantation in 1691 ; and 
must in consequence have been born about the year 1670. 

He had acquired from his father, as previously re- 
corded, the northern portion of the latter's lands; as is 
proven by a deed given by this younger Thomas Osborne, 
1st June, 1696, in which he conveys to his uncle, Edward 
Osborne of Henrico, the father of Tabitha Osborne 
Branch, some 200 acres of his inherited lands. 

For therein, in consideration of twenty-five pounds, 
Thomas Osborne conveys to Edward Osborne "one part 



136 BRANCHIANA 

of my plantation — beginning at the mouth of Garden 
Creek, and running up the creek on the east side of the 
creek to the bridge, and there crossing the bridge made 
by Edward Osborne to Edward Osborne's plantation, and 
thence running along Edward Osborne's line to Matthew 
Turpin's line, and along Matthew Turpin's line to the 
river, and down the river to where it began — being by 
estimacon 200 acres." 

This property — and the clause is of importance — is con- 
veyed with all rights, "in as large and ample manner to all 
intents and purposes as the same was granted to my great 
grandfather, Captain Thomas Osborne, by patent." 

For this deed is chiefly valuable as showing that, in 
effect, Thomas Osborne of Henrico was not disinherited 
by his father, as a casual inspection of the latter's will 
would undoubtedly suggest: the original plantation of 
"Coxendale" had been divided, as previously recorded, 
between Edward Osborne of Henrico and Thomas Os- 
borne of "Coxendale," the former acquiring the northern 
portion; the latter certainly bequeaths not an ell of land 
to his oldest son, and yet some four years later here is 
the younger Thomas Osborne disposing of land which 
was a part of the original "Coxendale," and which adjoins 
the line of Edward Osborne. 

Hence the deduction is obvious that again the father 
has provided for the oldest son in his own lifetime, and 
has at some earlier period deeded to him, in this instance, 
the northern portion of the older Thomas Osborne's share 
of "Coxendale." 



BRANCHIANA 137 

This is further demonstrated by a less venerable trans- 
fer of land, when, on 2d of August, 1697, Thomas Os- 
borne of Henrico sells to Philip Turpin, for thirty pounds, 
one hundred acres of land, "more or less," which tract is 
bounded thus : "to begin at a run called the Red Water 
at the maine Roade, thence down the said Roade to a pine 
marked four wayes, thence along a line of marked -trees 
to a Chestnut standing by the Red Water, then crossing 
the Red Water to a line belonging to the Antient Patent 
of 'Coxendale,' thence up that line to a Chestnut, marked 
four wayes, on the line of the land of Henry Hatcher 
(called 'Proctor's'), then down to the Red Water, and 
so following the Red Water to the place where it first be- 
gan." 

From this time on, the land-holdings of Thomas Os- 
borne of Henrico were bounded on the north by Garden 
Creek, and on the east by James River, and on the south 
by the lands of his younger brother, John Osborne, who 
had by this come to maturity and had inherited his share 
of their father's property according to the terms of their 
father's will as previously recorded. 

This is attested by a deed mutually given by Thomas 
Osborne and his oldest son — yet another Thomas Os- 
borne — on 5th of January, 1732, in which they convey to 
Thomas Friend, for fifty pounds, some fifty acres of 
"Coxendale" — which fifty acres on the south adjoin "the 
line of John Osborne." Clearly, Thomas Osborne of Hen" 
rico had retained for himself only the central portion of 
the land given him by his father; yet it is equitable to 



138 BRANCHIANA 

add that he had, somehow, acquired a tidy property on 
Dry Creek, then in Henrico County, but now in Chester- 
field. 

Thomas Osborne of Henrico died in the earlier half of 

1733- 

He had married, before the year 1691 — if a strict con- 
struction be placed upon the wording of his father's 
will, — and presumably before 1689, Martha Branch, the 
widow of John Branch of Henrico (the son of William 
Branch, and the grandson of Christopher Branch of 
" Kingsland"), and the daughter of Thomas Jones of 
Bermuda Hundreds. 

By this Martha Jones, Thomas Osborne of Henrico had 
issue: 

I. Thomas Osborne of Henrico. 

II. Edward Osborne of Henrico. 

III. Mary Osborne, who, as previously recorded, mar- 
ried Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield. 

IV. Elizabeth Osborne, who died unmarried before 
the year 1730. 

V. Cicely Osborne. 

The will of Thomas Osborne, Senior, of the Parish and 
County of Henrico, is recorded at Henrico Court-House ; 
it is dated 27th of February, 1730, and was recorded in 
the June of 1733. 

It bequeaths to the testator's sons, Thomas Osborne 
and Edward Osborne, the testator's plantation on James 



BRANCHIANA 139 

River ; and Edward Osborne is to have the lower portion, 
"where I now live," as well as 200 acres of the testator's 
property on Dry Creek in Henrico. 

To the testator's daughter, Cicely Osborne, is be- 
queathed "all her mother's clothes" and various household 
goods. 

The will also mentions the testator's daughter, Eliza- 
beth Osborne, now deceased. 

To the testator's daughter, Mary Osborne Branch, the 
wife of Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield, is bequeathed: 

"One Negro Woman Named Amy to her the Said Mary 
Branch and to her Heirs forever, and in case she have any 
Issue my Will is her Daughter, Mary Branch, shall have 
the first child, and her Daughter Martha the Second Child, 
to be given them and their Heirs forevere, and my Will is 
further that my Daughter Mary shall pay Yearly 20 shill- 
ings a Year towards the maintaining of her Sister Sissly, 
or forfeit the Said Negro Amy to her Brother, Thomas 
Osborne. ... I give to my Daughter Mary also a Chest 
of Drawers, a Looking Glass and a Still." 

The executors are Thomas Osborne and Edward Os- 
borne, the two sons of the testator. 

iWartfja $ont& &tibomt 

Thomas Osborne of Henrico married, before 1691, 
and presumably before 20th August, 1689 — at which date 
Thomas Osborne of "Coxendale" was appointed guardian 
to the children of John Branch, deceased, — the widow of 
John Branch of Henrico, the youngest son of William 



140 BRANCHIANA 

Branch of Henrico, and the grandson of Christopher 
Branch of " Kingsland." 

She died, to all appearances, before 1730, within which 
year, as previously recorded, her second husband drew up 
his will, and made of her no mention. 

The maiden name of this Martha Branch was 

Martha Jones. 

By her marriage with John Branch, Martha Jones had 
previously had issue: 

I. Priscilla Branch, who married, first, Edward 
Skerme of Henrico, and, second, Joseph Wilkinson. 

II. Obedience Branch, who married, first, John Cocke 
of Henrico, and, second, Thomas Turpin of Henrico. 

These were the children whose guardianship Thomas 
Osborne of "Coxendale" assumed in 1689. 

The children of Martha Jones Branch by her second 
marriage, with Thomas Osborne of Henrico, have been 
previously enumerated. 

QCfjomas Sfonti of iPafibeijaigfjes; 

Martha Jones was a descendant of 

Thomas Jones of "Pasbehaighes" and Bermuda Hun- 
dreds. 

This Thomas Jones, with his wife, Margrett Jones, 
came to Virginia in the same ship that transported Chris- 
topher Branch of " Kingsland " and his wife, Mary 
Branch, that is, the London Merchant, leaving England 
in the March of 1619-20. 



BRANCHIANA 141 

Thomas Jones settled at " Pasbehaighes," but more 
lately removed to Bermuda Hundreds, where he spent 
the remainder of his life. 

He had issue: 

I. Thomas Jones of Bermuda Hundreds. 

(Etjomaa SfontS of Jiermuba imnbrebsi 

This Thomas Jones, the only child, so far as is re- 
corded, of Thomas Jones of "Pasbehaighes," married 
Mary , and died ante 1679. 

Thomas Jones of Bermuda Hundreds had issue : 

I. Thomas Jones, Second, of Bermuda Hundreds, died 
1689, who married Martha Tanner, the daughter of Gil- 
bert Piatt's wife by her first marriage, with Joseph Tan- 
ner, and left issue. 

II. Repps Jones of Henrico, who died unmarried in 
1689. 

III. (Elizabeth?) Jones., who married Philip Turpin 
of Henrico. 

IV. Martha Jones, who, as previously recorded, mar- 
ried, first, John Branch of Henrico, and, second, Thomas 
Osborne of Henrico. 

iWarp &&erme 

The widow of Thomas Jones of Bermuda Hundreds re- 
married very shortly after her husband's death, her second 
choice being Edward Skerme of Henrico. 



142 BRANCHIANA 

This second marriage took place presumably about 
1679, and in any event before 9th of August, 1684, at 
whicE date there was a general settling up of the estate 
of Mary Skerme's first husband ; and upon this occasion 
Thomas Jones, Second, of Bermuda Hundreds, conveyed 
to his brother, Repps Jones, one hundred acres of land, as 
"part of the dividend left by my father, Thomas Jones, de- 
ceased," and divided with " Mary Skirm, his mother," 
certain tracts at Bermuda Hundreds, — a part of the same 
estate, — which presumably constituted the customary 
widow's third. 

By her second marriage, Mary Skerme had issue : 

I. Edward Skerme of Henrico, who married Priscilla 
Branch, the daughter of John Branch, and died in 1699, 
without issue. 

II. Mary Skerme, who married Broadnecks 

of Henrico. 

The will of Mary Skerme, the elder, is dated 16th of 
November, 1707, and was recorded at Henrico Court- 
House 1st September, 1710. 

It mentions the testator's grandchildren, Matthew 
Turpin, Philip Turpin, Martha Turpin, and Elizabeth 
Turpin, — all the children of Elizabeth Jones Turpin ; the 
testator's grandchildren, Thomas Osborne, Martha Os- 
borne and Mary Osborne, — the children of Martha Jones 
Osborne; the testator's daughters, Martha Osborne and 
Mary Broadnecks; and the testator's son-in-law, Philip 
Turpin. 



BRANCHIANA 143 

The witnesses are the testator's son-in-law, Thomas 
Osborne of Henrico, and Thomas Cheatham, Senior (the 
same Thomas Cheatham who married Tabitha Osborne 
Branch, the widow of Benjamin Branch of Henrico). 



®be WLiit of Captain penjamin ^ranrfj 

of mm* %iU 



Wf)t WMt of Captain penjamtn Prancf) 
of Wrtloto $ilt 

Tradition asserts that Captain Benjamin Branch of 
"Willow Hill " married a member of the well-known 
Goode family of Chesterfield County, in which event her 
maiden name would have been 

Mary Goode; but no authoritative record exists as to 
who were her parents. 

Yet, in passing, the tradition is substantially supported 
by the fact that one of the executors of Captain Benjamin 
Branch's will is a Francis Goode of Chesterfield, whom 
the testator explicitly calls "my kinsman," and that this 
kinship cannot be accounted for except by supposing this 
Francis Goode to have been a relative of Captain Benja- 
min Branch's wife. 

It should be borne in mind, also, that a Robert Goode is 
one of the executors of the will of Captain Benjamin 
Branch's father, Benjamin Branch of Chesterfield, and 
is in that document coupled with the testator's sons, 
Thomas Branch and Edward Branch — which circum- 
stance hints at a close alliance already existent in 1760 
between the families of Branch and Goode; and the ob- 
vious hypothesis is that this Robert Goode was the father 
oi the Mary Goode who married Captain Benjamin 
Branch of "Willow Hill," as well as the father of that 



148 BRANCHIANA 

Francis Goode who, in 1760, was "a kinsman" of Cap- 
tain Benjamin Branch and one of his executors. 

The assumption is a hypothesis that undoubtedly ex- 
plains a nebulous point in the family line, but it is a 
hypothesis and nothing more. 

All that is positively known concerning the wife of Cap- 
tain Benjamin Branch of " Willow Hill " is : that her 
Christian name was Mary ; that he married her prior to 
the year 1762, at the very latest, — since she had borne him 
four children by 1767, — and presumably about 1755 ; that 
she bore him five children, if not more than five, and that 
in all likelihood she survived her husband, or, in any 
event, did not die before the year 1782. 

The facts are meagre, but every known fact tends to 
buttress the supposition that the wife of Captain Benjamin 
Branch was Mary Goode, the daughter of Robert Goode 
of Chesterfield. 



ftfje mitt of Cfjomasi Prattcf) of aUilloto 



Wsst Wiiit of Cfjoma* Prancf) of WUoto 



Thomas Branch of " Willow Hill," as previously re- 
corded, at the age of twenty and in the year 1787, mar- 
ried 

Mary Patteson, the daughter of Colonel David Pat- 
teson of Chesterfield. 

She was some three years her husband's junior, having 
been born 28th of September, 1770. 

Mary Patteson Branch bore to Thomas Branch of "Wil- 
low Hill " the goodly number of fourteen children and 
died 20th of August, 1825. 

In tracing the descent of Mary Patteson the genealogist 
is again hampered by the vexatious paucity of the Charles 
City records, since it was in that county that the first Pat- 
teson to emigrate to Virginia made his home. 

He was a descendant of the Patteson family of Scot- 
land, and bore as arms : — Argent, guttee de poix, a lion 
rampant sable ; on a chief of the last, three escallops or. 
Crest : — a pelican in her piety, all proper. 

Here as in the Branch crest, is an obvious pun, the 
play upon words being in this case derived from the Latin 
potior, I suffer. 



152 BRANCHIANA 

©abtb patteson of Charles Citp 

David Patteson was living in Charles City County- 
prior to 1700. He was, as has been said, presumably the 
first member of his family to emigrate to Virginia, though 
it is barely possible that this David Patteson was a son of 
the Thomas "Pattison" who died in Charles City County 
on the Whitsunday of 1725. 

In any event, this was beyond any reasonable doubt the 
same David Patteson who in 1714 received a grant of land 
in southern Henrico County, which then embraced the 
County of Chesterfield. 

He continued personally to reside in Charles City, and 
in that county one finds little save the baptismal records to 
assist in filling out the lists of his offspring. 

Yet, in accordance with their testimony, this David Pat- 
teson had issue : 

I. Sarah Patteson, who was baptized 24th of March, 
1700. 

II. Anne Patteson, baptized 2d of November, 1701. 

III. David Patteson, baptized 14th of October, 1703. 

IV. Thomas Patteson (and his Christian name is 
perhaps noteworthy, as hinting at a relationship with the 
aforementioned Thomas "Pattison"), baptized 13th of 
December, 1708. 

V. Charles Patteson, baptized 6th of May, 1711. 



c 




BRANCHIANA 153 

VI. Jonathan Patteson, baptized 6th of June, 1713, 
who emigrated to Lunenburg and left issue. 

VII. Obediah Patteson, baptized 10th of February, 
1717. 

VIII. Gideon Patteson, baptized 17th of July, 1720. 

It should be borne in mind that these dates are merely 
those of the children's baptisms — which then almost in- 
variably took place two days after the child's birth, — and 
that there was perhaps a child born between David Patte- 
son and Thomas Patteson. 

2Babio -patteaon, £§>econb, of CfjarleS Citp 

David Patteson of Charles City, third child and oldest 
son of the foregoing, was born, as previously recorded, 
in the October of 1703. 

To him, as the oldest son, his father presumably be- 
queathed the lands he had patented, in 1714, in Henrico 
County. 

This David Patteson had married ante 1722. The 
maiden name of his wife is unknown. 

David Patteson, Second, of Charles City County, had 
issue : 

I. James Patteson, baptized 10th of February, 1723, 
who had, with other issue, James A. Patteson. 

II. Colonel David Patteson, born in 1724. 

III. Anne Patteson, baptized 19th of March, 1725. 

IV. Another daughter, baptized in 1728. 



154 BRANCHIANA 

Colonel Babtb $attesion of Cfjefitctftelb 

Colonel David Patteson of Chesterfield, the second 
child and son of the foregoing, was born in 1724. 

Though not the oldest son, he appears to have inherited 
his father's lands in Henrico, which Colonel David Patte- 
son unquestionably possessed during the Revolution and 
after, though they were by this a part of Chesterfield, — to 
which county he permanently removed about 1755. 

Colonel David Patteson, though he seems to have in- 
herited no great wealth originally, was in his latter days 
one of the most distinguished men of his time and neigh- 
borhood. 

He served against the British during the War of the 
Revolution, and at the cessation of hostilities occupied the 
honorable position of Colonel-Commandant of Chester- 
field ; he was a member of the Virginia House of Dele- 
gates for the years 1786-92-93-94; and he represented 
Chesterfield (with Stephen Pankey, Junior,) in the Vir- 
ginia Federal Convention of 1788, which met at Richmond 
in the June of that year and ratified in the name and behalf 
of the people of Virginia, the present Federal Constitution. 

In passing, Colonel David Patteson was one of the nar- 
row majority of ten which decided that the State accept 
the Constitution. 

Colonel David Patteson married, ante 1752, Mary 
Anderson, who was, according to tradition, a sister of the 
Claiborne Anderson of Chesterfield whose will was re- 
corded at Chesterfield Court-House in 1771. 



BRANCHIANA 155 

By this Mary Anderson, Colonel David Patteson of 
Chesterfield had issue: 

I. Anne Patteson, baptized 18th of June, 1754. 

II. Samuel Patteson, who married Elizabeth Darra- 
cott. 

III. Lucy Patteson, who married J. W. Winfree. 

IV. Frances Patteson, who married Robert Gilliam. 

V. Martha Patteson, who married her cousin, James 
A. Patteson. 

VI. Mary Patteson, who, as previously recorded, 
married Thomas Branch of " Willow Hill." 



Cfje Jf trait WMt of Cfjomas prancf) ot 
Petersburg anb Eicfjmonb 



t&fje Jf trait Wife of Cfcomag Pramf) of 
^Petersburg ana ^tcfjmonb 

Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond first mar- 
ried, in Amelia County, on 19th of October, 1825, as pre- 
viously recorded, Sarah Pride Read. 

Sarah Pride Read was born 8th of August, 1808, and 
died 3d May, 1855. 

She was the second daughter of 

John Blythe Read of Wales and of Chesterfield 
County, in Virginia. 

fofm plj>t&e Reab 

John Blythe Read was born in Wales, 3d of June. 
1776. No record has been preserved concerning his an- 
cestry, but he bore as arms : — Argent, three butter-churns 
or ; which in every detail corresponds to that of the well- 
known Welsh family of Read. 

By his first marriage with his cousin, Martha Blythe 
'(born 24th of December, 1776, died 5th of May, 1804), 
John Blythe Read had issue : 

I. John Fownes Read, born 5th of January, 1803, and 
died nth of June, 1804. 

By his second marriage with Susanna Pride, the daugh- 
ter of John Pride of Chesterfield, John Blythe Read had 
issue : 



160 BRANCHIANA 

I. Frances Priscilla Read, born 28th of September, 
1806, died 28th of November, 1807. 

II. Sarah Pride Read, born 8th of August, 1808, who 
married Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond. 

III. Elizabeth Rosina Read, born 16th of August, 
1810, died 2d of July, 181 1. 

IV. John Pride Read, born 3d of June, 1812, died 4th 
July, 1813. 

V. Emily Susan Read, born 20th of November, 1814, 
died 25th of October, 1820. 

VI. James Blythe Read, born 10th of March, 1817. 

John Blythe Read of Wales and Chesterfield, died 
15th of January, 1818. 

gjmgatma ffrtbe fteab 

Susanna Pride Read, the second wife of the forego- 
ing, was born 21st of January, 1787, and died 16th of 
April, 1817. 

The inscription upon the tomb of Susanna Pride Read, 
in Old Blandford Churchyard, near Petersburg, in Vir- 
ginia, may here be fitly cited as not entirely lacking in 
interest. Follows a verbatim copy: 



BRANCHIANA 161 

Sleep soft in dust await the Almighty will, 
Then rise unchanged and he an angel still. 



Beneath this stone 
Repose the remains of 

0lv& gmsan 3&eab 

The virtuous affectionate wife of 

fofm p. fteab 

Daughter of John and Priscilla Pride 

of Chesterfield County 
Born on the 21st of January 1787 

And departed this life 
The 16th of April Anno domini 1817 

Could blameless manners or affection warm 

Could the mild virtues still to memory dear 
Or innocence the rage of death disarm 

An early victim had not rested here 
Nor had a husband mournd his doom severe 

Nor infant sorrows streamd around the grave 
Nor weeping relatives mixed the falling tear 

Such was her worth could worth exception crave 
Earth's dreary cell would ne'er that form beloved enslave. 

On her left lie her three children 

&vmtt& ^rfarilla &eab 

Born 28th Sept 1806 died 28th Nov 1801 

€It?abetf) EojStna Beab 

Born 16th August 1810 died 2n July 1811 

HFofjn $ribe &eab 

Born 3n June and died 3n July 1813 

Sacred to their memory 
This tomb is dedicated by her husband 
And their father. 



1 62 BRANCHIANA 

Close beside this monument stand the tombs of John 
Blythe Read and of Emily Susan Read, the daughter of 
John Blythe Read and of Susanna Pride. 

Susanna Pride Read was the daughter of John Pride 
of Chesterfield, as previously recorded; and in conse- 
quence, a descendant of 

William Pride of Henrico. 

laitUiam $rioe of Henrico 

Of this William Pride, presumably born about 1630, 
and died ante 1677, we have no record save a mere men- 
tion of his name in a deed given by his son in the year 
1732, wherein the latter assigns certain properties in- 
herited from his father. This, howerer, was presumably 
the original emigrant to America and the founder of the 
Pride family in Virginia. 

William Pride of Henrico had issue : 

I. William Pride, Second, of Henrico, born about 
1650. 

UMiam IJrtoe, ketone, of Henrico 

This William Pride, born about 1650, the only son, 
so far as known, of the foregoing, makes his first appear- 
ance in the county records, 10th December, 1677, deep in 
litigation with one William Bevin, concerning a tobacco 
crop they had raised on shares — the two families (for the 
evidence shows that William Pride was already a married 
man, though he appears as yet to have had no children) 



BRANCHIANA 163 

being by the original agreement, to share Bevin's house 
3uring the raising; of this crop, as some protection against 
the neighboring and hostile Indians. 

And by the original agreement, William Pride was to 
have had one-third of the proceeds ; but history does not 
detail the final decision of the court. 

William Pride of Henrico appears to have started life 
as a tobacco-farmer on a small scale and gradually to have 
amassed a competence. 

He inherited land in Henrico, as has been recorded, 
from his father; and, 1st of December, 1692, he purchased 
yet more land in that county, of William Randolph et al, 
which transaction resulted in a tedious lawsuit, of some 
fifteen years' duration, and eventually lost by William 
Pride, who was adjudged, 1st of July, 1710, to owe Wil- 
liam Randolph the impoverishing damages of five shillings 
and six pence. 

On 1st of October, 1695, William Pride transferred a 
considerable tract of land in Henrico to his daughter, 
Wynifred, the wife of Benjamin Lockett, with a reversion, 
in the event of her having no children, to his own sons. 

For some thirty years thereafter, one finds absolutely 
no mention of William Pride in the records of Henrico ; 
but all subsequent entries concerning him fully demon- 
strate that during this period he had materially increased 
the list of his worldly belongings. 

On 3d of October, 1726, William Pride purchased from 
John Peterson of Isle of Wight, for sixty-nine pounds, 
some 208 acres on the north side of Swift Creek ; and at 



.164 BRANCHIANA 

the same date from Philip Jones of Henrico, for five 
pounds, one acre on the south side of Swift Creek. 

He sold, on 15th of July, 1732, to David Nunnally, for 
thirty pounds, some 300 acres of his patrimony — this be- 
ing described as a portion of the land "inherited by Wil- 
liam Pride by the will of his father, William Pride, de- 
ceased." 

This deed, to which previous allusion has been made, is 
doubly important, both as giving the name of William 
Pride's father, and (by attesting that the will of this 
father had been formally recorded at Henrico Court- 
House), as demonstrating that the elder William Pride 
died before 1677, — since his will is not included in the 
records of that county, which, since 1677, exist in tolerable 
sufficiency. 

On the 2d of March, 1733, William Pride of Henrico 
transferred, for five shillings, to his son, John Pride, 1 10 
acres on Swift Creek, in the present Chesterfield County, 
then a part of Henrico, — this being a part of the land 
originally patented by the older William Pride; and the 
no acres, also on Swift Creek, which the younger Wil- 
liam Pride had bought of Richard Walthall by a deed 
dated 7th of September, 1724. 

On the 31st of July, 1736, William Pride transferred to 
the same son, John Pride, for fifty pounds, the 211 acres 
on Swift Creek which William Pride had earlier pur- 
chased from Henry Randolph, by a deed dated 14th of 
May, 171 1. 



BRANCHIANA 165 

William Pride had married before the year 1677, and 
died at an advanced age, post 1736. 
William Pride, Second, of Henrico had issue : 

I. Hollcot Pride, who apparently was born post 1677; 
and apparently died young. 

II. William Pride, who appears never to have mar- 
ried, and died without issue early in 1764. 

III. John Pride of Dale Parish, in Henrico County. 

IV. Wynifred Pride, who married Benjamin Lockett 
of Henrico. 

3Tofm iPribe of Henrico 

John Pride of Dale Parish, in Henrico, third son of 
the foregoing, was born about 1680, and died post 1736. 

The first mention of his name occurs 1st of April, 1696, 
when he bought from Edward Matthews, in exchange for 
" 3,000 pounds of tobacco and one steer " seventy acres 
of land in Henrico County, on the north side of James 
River, and at this date, to all appearances, started in life 
as a tobacco- farmer. 

Yet within a breath let it be added that John Pride 
could have been, to all appearances, little more than a boy 
at this period; since the entire recorded evidence tends 
to show that his father had no issue born prior to 1677, 
and that John Pride was the third son; and that it is 
likely this property was, in reality, purchased by William 
Pride, Second, of Henrico, but in the name of his son, 
John Pride. 



1 66 BRANCHIANA 

However this may have been, John Pride of Henrico 
patented 247 acres "on the north side of Appomattox," 
at Deep Creek (in what is now the western portion of 
Chesterfield County), on the 17th of August, 1725; and 
acquired from his father, as previously recorded, in 1733 • 
and 1736, some 420 acres of adjacent land on Swift Creek. 

He transferred to Samuel Hix, on 5th of December, 
172I5, for fifty pounds, some sixty-nine acres on " Turka- 
hoe Creek," — which is now known as the " Turkey 
Branch" of Swift Creek in Chesterfield County; and 
transferred to his son-in-law, John Hill, on 4th of Feb- 
ruary, 1726-7, some 123 acres on Deep Creek, a moiety of 
the land John Pride had patented in 1725 ; and trans- 
ferred to Charles Cannon, on 1st of April, 1727, for twen- 
ty-five pounds, some 375 acres on "Turkahoe Creek." 

The lands owned by John Pride of Henrico are to-day 
easily locateable ; they lay to the extreme central west of 
Chesterfield County, and were bounded on the north by 
Swift Creek, on the east by Deep Creek, and on the west 
by Turkey Branch ; and the present Genito road bisects 
what was once his plantation. 

John Pride of Henrico married, prior to 1720, Susanna 
(Puckett?). 

By Susanna (Puckett?), John Pride of Henrico had 
issue : 

I. John Pride, born 1720, who married Frances , 

and had issue. 

II. William Pride of Chesterfield, born 19th of De- 
cember, 1 72 1. 



BRANCHIANA 167 

III. Puckett Pride, born 2d of September, 1728. 

IV. A daughter, name unknown, who married John 
Hill of Henrico, and left issue. 

WUiam Pribc of Cijesterf telb 

William Pride of the Parish of Dale, in Chesterfield, 
the second son of the foregoing, was born the 19th of De- 
cember, 1721, and died in 1774. He became a native of 
Chesterfield, as aforetime his near neighbors the Branches 
and the Dsbornes had done, by the division of that county 
from Henrico about 1740. 

In addition to his lands in Chesterfield, most probably 
inherited from his father's estate, William Pride acquired 
property in Amelia County, which he likewise farmed to 
apparent profit. 

William Pride died, as has been said, in 1774. He had 
married, ante 17 AS' Elizabeth , who, in all likeli- 
hood, survived her husband. 

At his death William Pride of Chesterfield left issue : 

I. John Pride of Chesterfield and Amelia counties. 

II. Peter Pride, to whom his father bequeathed his 
plantation in Chesterfield County, but who died without 
issue and unmarried in the latter half of 1804, and appa- 
rently in destitute circumstances. 

III. Thomas Pride, who died unmarried, in the latter 
part of 1779, leaving his entire estate to his older brother, 
John Pride of Chesterfield and Amelia. 



168 BRANCHIANA 

The will of William Pride of the Parish of Dale, in 
Chesterfield, is recorded at Chesterfield Court-House; it 
is dated 4th of October, 1749, and was recorded in 1774. 

It bequeaths the testator's lands and plantation in 
Amelia County to the testator's son, John Pride; to the 
testator's son, Peter Pride, the testator's plantation in 
Chesterfield; and mentions the testator's three children 
and his wife, Elizabeth Pride. 

It will be noted that this will was drawn up at the age 
of twenty-eight, some twenty-five years before the death 
of the testator ; and it is not impossible that during that 
period other children were born to him, for whom, through 
carelessness he neglected to provide. 

The executors are Elizabeth Pride (the testator's wife), 
and Field Archer, and James Hill (who was probably the 
testator's nephew). 

STofm $ribe of Cfjcstcrf iclb anb Amelia 

John Pride of Chesterfield and Amelia counties, in 
Virginia, the oldest child and son of the foregoing, was 
born about 1741, and died in 1796 ; and it was to him, as 
previously recorded, that his father bequeathed his proper- 
ties in Amelia County. 

More lately, this John Pride became a man of some 
prominence and of wealth. 

Very early in life he was appointed by Thomas Nelson 
(25th of April, 1759) deputy clerk of Henrico County, 
serving under Thomas Adams; and he was perhaps the 
same John Pride who served upon the Amelia County 




Q (jfl-L/Lv^ 



BRANCHIANA 169 

Committee of Public Safety during the Revolution (ap- 
pointed the 3d of May, 1775). 

But it should be remembered that it is always difficult to 
distinguish between this John Pride and his cousin, the 
John Pride of Amelia County — son to John Pride and 
Frances Pride — who was a member of the Virginia Fed- 
eral Convention of 1788. Both owned extensive lands in 
Amelia, and were prominently identified with the affairs 
of that county; and both bestowed upon their children, 
approximately, the same Christian names. 

All in all, the tangle is perplexing ; but for our present 
purposes it is, happily, solved by the undisputed fact that 
while Susan Pride — the daughter of John Pride of 
Amelia — on 4th December, 1764, married John Booker of 
Amelia, another and a somewhat more youthful Susan 
Pride — the daughter of John Pride of Chesterfield and 
Amelia counties — in the latter half of 1805, undeniably 
married John Blythe Read of Wales and of Chesterfield. 

John Pride of Chesterfield and Amelia died, as has been 
said, in 1796, owning at the time extensive lands in Ches- 
terfield, Amelia and Charlotte counties, and in the State 
of Kentucky. 

His personal property was more lately appraised at 
2,422 pounds, six shillings and three pence, which was 
for the period a considerable sum. 

The will of John Pride, recorded at Chesterfield Court- 
House, is dated November, 1795, and was recorded in 
1796. 

It bequeaths to the testator's son, Thomas Pride, all 



170 BRANCHIANA 

the testator's lands in Chesterfield County, which are to 
revert, after the failure of Thomas Pride's heirs, to the 
testator's son, John Alexander Pride. 

The four daughters of the testator — Sally Pride, Eliza- 
beth Pride, Priscilla Pride and Susanna Pride — are to 
have a home upon the plantation, and be "maintained so 
as to keep them in credit"; and the plantation in Ches- 
terfield called " Frogpon" — now unlocateable — is left to 
all six of the previously mentioned children equally. 

To the testator's son, Peter Pride, is bequeathed the 
tract of land on the north side of Stanton (sic) River, in 
Charlotte County, which the testator purchased of 
Markus (sic) Gibbon. The lands in Kentucky are to be 
divided equally among the testator's sons, Peter Pride, 
James Pride and John Alexander Pride. 

A codicil, dated 26th of November, 1795, leaves the 
" Frogpon" plantation, including the lower part of 600 
acres, to be shared between the testator's sons, John Alex- 
ander Pride and James Pride, and bequeaths to the tes- 
tator's son, Peter Pride, the 125 acres "adjoining Captain 
John Hill's land," — who was probably the testator's 
cousin. 

The executors are James Pride (the testator's son) and 
Captain Jesse Cogbill and Hill Cogbill (who were per- 
haps the testator's brothers-in-law). 

An inventory of the estate was taken 9th March, 1797. 

John Pride of Chesterfield and Amelia married ante 
1765, Priscilla (Cogbill?). 

By Priscilla (Cogbill?), John Pride of Chesterfield left 
issue : 



BRANCHIANA 171 

I. James Pride. 

II. Thomas Pride, who died in 1823. 

III. John Alexander Pride, who died in 1818. 

IV. Peter Pride. 
IV. Peter Pride. 

VI. Elizabeth Pride, who married John Simpson. 

VII. Priscilla Pride. 

VIII. Susanna Pride, who, as previously recorded, 
married John Blvthe Read of Wales and Chesterfield. 



Cfje Btcovto Wiiit of tEtyoma* Pranci) of 
$etersfourg ano fttcfjmonb 



Cfjc ^econb WLiit of tKfjomasi Prandj of 
^etersrtmrg anb Etcfmtonb 

Thomas Branch of Petersburg and Richmond married, 
second, as previously recorded, Anne Adams Wheel- 
right, the daughter of Joseph Wheelright of Westmore- 
land County, in Virginia. 

Anne Adams Wheelright was born the 28th of Octo- 
ber, 1827, and in Westmoreland County married Thomas 
Branch of Petersburg and Richmond on the twenty-second 
of April, 1857. They had issue, as has been said, three 
children. 

Inasmuch as the distinguished family of Wheelright 
has previously been traced through all its ramifications, 
and the history of it previously printed, it appears here 
neither expedient nor necessary to enter into a detailed 
account of the Wheelright lineage. 

Suffice it that the founder of this family in America 
was John Wheelright of Massachusetts and New Hamp- 
shire. 

3ToJjn ®23f)eelrtgfjt of J2eto ^ampsfjtre 

John Wheelright was born in England in 1594. He 
was there for many years a clergyman of the Established 
Church. In 1636, however, he emigrated to Massachu- 



176 BRANCHIANA 

setts and settled at Boston, where latterly he was chosen 
as pastor of a branch church in what is now Braintree. 

On account of a sermon delivered in Boston, soon after 
his arrival in that city, the General Court pronounced 
John Wheelright to be guilty of "sedition and contempt." 
After some months' delay he was banished from the 
Colony, and in 1638 founded what is now the town of 
Exeter, in New Hampshire. 

John Wheelright in 1646 was permitted to return to 
Massachusetts, and there, in 1654, published his well- 
known " Vindication." In 1662 John Wheelright settled 
as pastor in Salisbury, in New Hampshire, where he spent 
the remainder of his long life. 

He published in 1645 Mercurius Americanus. 

John Wheelright of Massachusetts and New Hamp- 
shire died in 1679, leaving issue; and from him descended 
the Wheelright family of New England, as well as the 
Wheelrights of Virginia. 

BTo&pf) OTfjeelrigfjt of ©Hestmorelanb 

Joseph Wheelright of Westmoreland County, in Vir- 
ginia, a great-grandson of the foregoing, was born in 
New Hampshire, in the year 1801. He was educated at 
Harvard College, and subsequently adopted medicine as 
his chosen profession. 

Joseph Wheelright more lately still removed to Vir- 
ginia, where he settled in Westmoreland County, and 
dwelt there for many years, a physician of wide repute 
and of the highest standing. He died in 1864. 



BRANCHIANA 177 

Joseph Wheelright of Westmoreland had married very 
early in life Louisa Dodge of New Hampshire. She was 
born in 1809, and was, upon her father's side, the descend- 
ant of a long line of New England clergymen. 

By his marriage with Louisa Dodge, Joseph Wheelright 
of Westmoreland had issue : 

I. Frederick Wheelright, who died in infancy. 

II. Thomas Wheelright, who never married, and 
died without issue. 

III. Sarah Wheelright, who married Major Henry 
Dashiell. 

IV. Anne Adams Wheelright, who married Thomas 
Branch of Petersburg and Richmond. 

V. Frederick Wheelright, who married, first, Maria 
Collins, and, second, Ellen Hungerford. 

VI. William Henry Wheelright, who married 
Margaret Kearfott. 

VII. Rebecca Wheelright, who married John Fallen. 



Crrata 

On page 75 the sub-head should have 
been set in small italics to denote 
the third generation in descent from 
Thomas Branch. 

On page 135 for " Epes" read " Eppes." 

On page 171 the fifth line should read: 
"V. Sali.y Pride." 

By a deplorable 'error the distinguished 
name of Wheelwright has been 
spelt throughout this volume as 
" Wheelright" ■ as is disastrously 
apparent on pages 3, 56. 57, 101, 
102, 175, 176, and 177. 






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