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Barrow ‚ Ancestry of John Barrow of Warren Co., Georgia

Jonathan B. Butcher, 6/1984

Typed and contributed by Frank Barrow; adapted for web presentation by Elizabeth Ross. Aug. 2005.

JOHN BARROW, who died in Warren Co., GA., in 1809/10, appears to be the same as John Barrow Jr., of Beaufort Co., NC, in 1790. This John was son of Col. John Barrow, Sr., and seems to have been born between 1739 and 1748, as he was taxed (over age 16) in his fatherís house in 1764 but not in 1755. It is clear that the John in Beaufort in 1790 was the son of Col. John Sr., as proved by the deeds. The only contemporaneous John in the area was a cousin, son of Joseph Barrow, who made a will in 1752. That John, Josephís son, inherited a tract bought of Thomas Little in 1745 (2:448), which consisted of 200 acres on the east side of Coneto Creek. This land fell into Pitt Co., and this John was living in Pitt when he sold inherited land in 1772 (E:51). Only our John Sr. and John Jr. were taxed in Beaufort Co. in 1779.

JOHN BARROW, JR., first appears in the Beaufort deeds on 19 February 1770 when he purchased from Roger Ormond (his brother ‚ in ‚ law) for 10 pds. The _ acre lot No. 67 in Bath Town (4:262, witnessed by Phineas Latham, David Magine ( or Macguire?). This is the same lot that John Barrow, Esquire of Beaufort Co. sold for 20 sh. To Henry Ormond on 17 January 1801 (Beaufort Patent Record 2 & 3, p. 451, witnessed by George Barrow, Sam. Willis). The first witness might be our Johnís son George.

In 1778, John Jr. received land from his father: (5:16):

This Indenture made this eighth day of SeptemberÖ.1778 between John Barrow Esqr Senr & Martha his wife of Beaufort CountyÖ.& Ö.weÖ.hathÖ.soldÖ.unto the said John Barrow Junr a Certain Tract or Seat of LandÖ.beginning on the No side of Pamplico River on the West side of the County Road beginning at a Pine and runs No 81 West 80 PolesÖside of a Branch above the forked Swamp BridgeÖMatchepungo SwampÖ.of MarchÖ.1742/3 containingÖ.two hundred acresÖ
Witness: Saml. Boutwell, Charles Latham, William Barrow.

The 1779 tax of Beaufort (LP 30.1) lists John Barrow Junr in the same district as Col. John Barrow, with 3120 pds. Property in his own right, as well as property in trust for Zachariah and Eliza. McSwain. The latter two were apparently children of his deceased sister Elizabeth.

John probably married some time around 1770, but I have not been able to identify his wife (presumably Jemima) from the Beaufort wills and deeds, and the marriage bonds of this period are lost. Most likely we would find her origin among the families with whom the Barrows were associated in the Bath Town area. Possibly the name of the son Warren Barrow is also a clue, and there were Warrens in this region.

As you know, John Barrow, Sr. made his will in Beaufort on 12 June 1781 (OW-167), and to his son John (Jr.) left 300 acres on the north side of Pungo Swamp as well as a negro Moses. I wonder if this slave is the same Moses that John Barrow of Warren Co. bequeathed to his son Thomas?

Our John Barrow clearly saw service during the Revolution. A return of the Beaufort Co. Militia dated 20 April 1781 (Mil. T.R. 7-15, see copy enclosed) lists John Barrow Junr. At the head of Company No. 1. The fact that he is listed first perhaps indicates that he was an officer of this company, although this is not specifically stated, and I have not found any other Beaufort rosters. Among the original N.C. Revolutionary vouchers we find only one issued to John Barrow of Beaufort Co. on 20 July 1783 for a steer supplied to the army (see photostat).

John seems to have received several state land grants (which I have not examined), and on 21 Apr. 1802 purchased for 6 pds. From Langley Respess 45 acres in Long Acre beginning at Charles Lathamís corner (8:166, witnessed by Willm. Redditt, Green (X) Barrow). The 1800 Census lists him in Beaufort with 1 white male aged 0-10, 1 aged 10-16, 2 aged 16-26 and 1 over 45, 1 white female aged 0-10, 2 aged 10-16 and 1 over 45. The number of slaves is obscured.

John began selling his land a few later. On 3 Dec 1804 he sold to Langley Respess 100 acres in Long Acre joining said Respess (8:90, witnessed by John Latham, Eliz. (X) Ross). On 11 Jan. 1805 he sold to William Boyd (was this the husband of his daughter, Mary Body?) 300 acres beginning on the main run (of Matchepungo?) at Fosters Branch (8:209, witnessed by A. Squires, Custis (X) Kelley), which was perhaps the land received by his fatherís will. Finally, on 12 Feb. 1805 John Barrow Esqr. Of Beaufort sold for $450 to Thomas Boyd three tracts, all on the north side of Pamplico River and south side of Pungo Swamp, totaling 450 acres, one of which is identifiable as the land he had obtained from John Sr. in 1778 (9:369, witnessed by Thomas Boyd Senr., A. Squyars). This is the last appearance of our John in Beaufort deeds, and he was not there on the 1810 Census. Another John appears in the Beaufort deeds by 1816, but this was the son of Thomas Barrow, who made his will in 1806.

It is not clear to me from your notes just when our John arrived in Georgia. There was a John Barrow in Warren Co. on the 1805 land lottery, but this was not necessarily our John, and he does not seem to appear in Warren Co. deed abstracts through 1807. As you know, John made his will in Warren Co., Ga. On 26 Dec. 1809, proven 5 Mar. 1810, naming wife Jemima and children John, George, Mary Boyd, Celia Davis, Richard, Thomas, Warren, William, Millie Barrow, Sarah Jones and Micajah Barrow.

John was the son of:

Col. JOHN BARROW, SR., who was probably born around 1700/05, and who was an important man in early Beaufort Co. By his fatherís will, 1716, he received a third part of a 1400 acre plantation in Hyde Co., adjacent to Beaufort. He soon moved, with most of his brothers, to Beaufort, and on 16 Sept. 1730 purchased from John Oden 150 acres on Old Town Creek (2:112). Then on 17 Oct. 1737 he purchased from his brother Joseph 320 acres on Matchapungo Swamp, joining Francis Gurganus (2:262, witnessed by James Barrow, William (MC) Campbell, Thomas Hainey). At about the same time he made a series of other purchases: Lot 35 in Bath Town from Robt. Culahane on 14 June 1737 (2:336), 30 acres in the forks of Bath Town Creek from Thomas Pitts on 14 Oct. 1737 (2:270), and 50 acres in the forks of Bath Town Creek from Charles Burroughs on 14 Oct. 1737 (2:276). He went on to obtain several other tracts in this area around Bath, which was once an important port (and pirate refuge), but is now nearly abandoned.

We know that John had a wife Martha (Spring) by 8 Dec. 1746 when he, with Martha cosigning, sold the land that he had bought from Joseph Barrow to John Martin (2:486) and Richard Newman (2:483). However, we also know that only 6 of the 15 2 children named in Johnís will appear in Marthaís will, and that Johnís eldest child was born before 1739. This dating and the large number of children suggest that Martha may have been his second wife, although she simply may have left no bequests to some of her children, who had already been amply provided for in Johnís will. I have not been able to identify such a first wife. The will of William Campbell of Beaufort Co., 8 Oct. 1743, does mention his brother-in-law John Barrow, but this appears to be because William had married Johnís younger sister, Ann. Possibly we would be able to further resolve the date of marriage by studying Marthaís ancestry, although I do not find a will for her parents. She was presumably the sister of Aaron Spring, who made his will in Beaufort on 18 April 1755.

Although early Beaufort records are not very well preserved we can show extensive public service for John. A deed of 12 Sept. 1745 (2:449) shows that he was then a Justice of the Peace (which was a major office in those times, the justices constituting the County Court, which was the basic governing body of the county). The 1779 tax calls him Col. John Barrow as he was Colonel of the Beaufort Militia Regiment. The Governorís record of these appointments is damaged for Beaufort, but does show that John Boyd replaced John Barrow (resigned) as Colonel at some unspecified date in this period., probably soon after 1779 (G.O. 146, pt. 1, p. 2). The same source shows that John received additional commissions as Justice of the Peace on 1 Jan. 1763, 29 Nov. 1766 and 29 Nov. 1768. Finally, we find that John Barrow represented Beaufort in the NC. House in 1744, 1746, 1747, 1751, 1753, 1760, 1761, 1762, 1764, 1765, 1767 and 1768, although he does not always seem to have been in attendance.

The 1755 tax of Beaufort lists "John Barrow & son" for 2 white polls and 7 black polls, while the 1764 tax lists "Barrow, John & Sons Samuel & Johní for 3 while polls and 10 black polls (and I suspect Samuel was the son taxed in 1755). The 1779 tax lists Col. John Barrow with property valued at £8667.12.0.

As you know, John made his will on 12 June 1781 (OW-167), and Martha made her will on 10 Mar. 1790. John had the following childrení (listed in the order named in his will):

    i. Samuel, probably born before 1739 (if the "son" taxed in 1755). apparently died unmarried some time after 1764.

    ii. Martha, married Jarmon.

    iii. Daughter, died before 1781, married Thompson

    iv. Elizabeth, married McSwaine.

    v. John Jr., born ca. 1739/48 (see above). vi. Mary, married Roger Ormond, to whom John gave a slave on 28 Mar. 1765 (deeds, 4:74).

    vii. Ann, married Boyd.

    viii. Sarah, married Latham

    ix. Rebecca, married Archable.

    x. Fanny, married Lanier.

    xi. William, born after 1748, received the home plantation from his father. Possibly the William whose estate was administered by William Ocut on 8 Sept. 1792. 3

    xii. Ruth, married Smaw.

    xiii. Thomas, perhaps born after 1758, as he doesnít seem to have been taxed in 1779 (taxable age then 21). Probably the Thomas who left a will in 1806 (OW-434).

    xiv. Susah, married between 1781 and 1790 Winfield.

    xv. Rodah, married between 1781 and 1790 Jordan.

The earlier history of this lineage is apparently known to you from the report I prepared for Miss Myrtle Barrow. John Barrow, Sr. was the son of:

Major WILLIAM BARROW, born in Perquimans Precinct, N.C. on 20 or 26 Feb. 1671/2, made his will in Hyde Precinct 8 Jan. 1715/6, probated Oct. 1716 (see copy). He married on 14 June (Jan.?) 1696/7 widow Elizabeth (Elkes) Cook, who married thirdly a Lillington and died in Bath I 1734. William was the eldest son of:

JOHN BARROW, SR., born ca. 1643, perhaps in Virginia, who came to Perquimans Precinct very early and married there on 1 Feb. 1668/9 Sarah Sutton (bapt.Scituate, Mass. 15 Sept. 1650). John died on 10 June 1718, leaving a will, a copy of which is enclosed.

The origin of this John Barrow, Sr. is as yet unclear. However, I tend to suspect that he was son of another John Barrow, who was in Surry Co., VA in the 1750ís. This John was apparently born ca. 1609 and came over from England to Virginia on the "Plaine Joane" 15 May 1635, aged 29 (see J. B. Boddie, Historical Southern Families, II:25+). He was apparently claimed as a headright in a patent to John Sweete of Isle of Wight Co. for land near Lawnes Creek in Surry on 11 Nov. 1642 (VA. Patent Bk. 1:858). Surry Co. was until 1652 a part of James City Co., records of which are lost. On May 3, 1653 John Barrow patented 385 acres in Surry on the south side of James River and southwest side of Upper Chipoake Creek (Bd. 6, patent #286). Boddie says that John is last mentioned in Surry Co. records in 1658, and I have not been able to discover what happened to this land, nor have I found any record to identify his heirs. However, he seems to have been of the right age and in the right place to be the father of John Barrow, Sr. of North Carolina.


* The late Jonathan Butcher was a highly respected professional genealogist in North Carolina through the 1980s. Members of the PCFR who have benefitted from his research are offering their various reports for public view. The PCFR wishes to honor Mr. Butcher, and to extend gratitude to the generous contributors.


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