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James William Walker (1756-1823)/Notes

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From: Mary Ann Hubbell
Subject: [Descendants of Samuel Walker "The Orphan"
Date: June 4, 2007 12:29:35 PM EDT
To: WalkerShortList@googlegroups.com


Text:Samuel Walker of Caswell Co NC whose DNA matches Ken's, et al, died

there in 1798. In addition to his daughters, he named one son and two Walker grandsons in his will. The son - James William - left Caswell Co for Robertson Co TN. The two grandsons', Samuel and James, position is the family has never been 100% proved but they seem to match what is known about the oldest two sons of James William. Of course, there is always the possibility that they were the surviving children of an unknown deceased son - perhaps older since he left them his land. Lin and I have looked into it and can't either prove or disprove that the boys were J.W.s sons. There are another set of brothers in the area with the same names who we can separate from 'ours' because of marriage records. It's been years since I read my notes but it seems that they might be the same age (I'll try to find the notes when I have some time). I remember we looked at them but couldn't find out how they fit into the Walker scheme of things. I do believe that we decided they weren't those named in the will because they seem to have stayed in Caswell co, NC. We know that our brothers did not keep the land. Each sold their interest to an uncle as they turned 21 - suggesting that they didn't need the land. It would seem that the ones who stayed in the area and married would have kept the land to farm and support their family. Selling the land as they turned 21 suggests to me that they had moved on to TN with their parents and had no need for the land.

Unfortunately, the early records for Robertson Co., TN have been destroyed so there is nothing to use to see if the boys bought land in Robertson Co as they sold in Caswell. I visited the county archives in Robertson Co a few years ago - the historian explained that the records had been stored for years in the courthouse basement in boxes. When the archives opened they were able to salvage all of the boxes except one - the bottom box. It had suffered from years of water damage, insects and other vermin chomping on it. The box fell apart as they tried to move it and the contents were beyond saving. As a result, their records start at @ 1830. A few tidbits have been recorded by early researchers but the original documents are gone. One tidbit recorded by a 'cousin' was a mention of a Samuel Walker born in 1731 whose father's name was James.

Going from the will, I suspect that James William had already left Caswell Co, NC by the time Samuel died. James was named along with a brother in law as executor, however, the final papers are only signed by the brother in law. A son born in 1800 is recorded as being born in NC so perhaps J.W. returned or just wasn't available to sign the papers.

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