William Reves, Sr. UNDOCUMENTED
Birth Source: Estimated from census
Death: before Nov 1811, Grayson County, Virginia
Death Source: Grayson County, VA Deed and Probate Records
Spouse1: Jane Burton
- Jesse Reeves
- Elizabeth Reeves
- William Reeves
- Anne Reeves
- Mary Reeves
- Susanna Reeves
- George Reeves, Jr.
- Lucy Reeves
- Prudence Reeves
- Charity Reeves
- John Reeves
In December, 1897* (sic) George W. Reeves of Jefferson, Ashe County, North Carolina, then almost 86 years of age, wrote: "My grandfather's name was George Reeves whose birthplace I am unable to give, but was principally raised in eastern North Carolina. He was born about the year 1704 or 1705 (sic) and came from Neuse River, N.C., to New River, Grayson County, Virginia, about the year 1725 (sic) bringing his wife with him. They had born to them seven daughters and four sons, the youngest of which was John Reeves who was my father. When my grandfather came to Virginia no others of the Reeves family came with him, but my recollection is that he left others of the Reeves family in eastern N. C. whose names I am unable to give. But well remember my father had two cousins, William Reeves and Jeremiah Reeves, who visited my father since my recollection. I also remember that my grandfather's family frequently visited their relatives in eastern N. C, and I am sure that my grandfather left brothers and sisters in that part of the state...My grandmother's maiden name was Jane Burton."
Based upon matching DNA of the descendants of George Reeves of Grayson County, Virginia to the descendants of William Reeves of Johnston/Wake Counties in North Carolina, the following records appear to pertain to this George Reeves:
- In November 1760, a Deed of Sale from Henry McCullock Esqr. to George Reaves for 200 Acres of Land was proved in open Court by the oath of William Reed and was ordered to be Registered. From Orange County N.C. Court Minutes, 1752-1761, Book I,p. 224
- Orange County Court Minutes on pg 231 for February 1761: On motion of George Reaves tis Ordered that his mark be Recorded towit: a Crop & a nick in each ear.
- George Reves witnessed an indenture from John Talifaro of Granville County to George Keath of Johnston County for land on Newlight Creek, Johnston County, June 3, 1762, proved July Court 1763.
- George Reaves purchased land from Aquilla Sugg on New Light near Poplar Branch, June 2 1760 (registered in Johnston County, July 1762).
- George Reves, planter, purchased 150 acres from John Bledso and wife Susana on south side of Nuse River. This was part of a larger tract granted by deed to John Bledso from Granville, dated February 1760. Witnesses were George Keath, Richd Bradford and Wm. Cloud, Johnston County, July 6, 1762.
- George River (Rives?), planter, sold 150 acres to Robert Grady, on south side of Nuse River, December 17, 1762. This was part of a tract granted by Granville deed to John Bedso and conveyed to said George Reaves and from Reaves to Gardey (note different spelling in same document). George Reeves acknowledged a deed to Robert Grady, Johnston County, July 19, 1763.
- George Reeves was appointed overseer of the “road in the room and district of Jeremiah Cloud”, Johnston County, July 19, 1763.
- William Reeves, Johnston County, to Charles Coupland (Copland), Granville County, land in Johnston County being the plantation whereon the Widow Matthews now lives, beginning at William Holls corner red oak on the north side Neuse river: along Holls land south to said creek: down said creek its meanders to the mouth of a small branch on the south side of the same to a white oak & 2 dog woods: up said branch to Wallets line: down the said line to a cor pine: N300p to a wh. Oak: E340p to an oak the 1st sta... 300 Acres...houses, gardens & c...Wit: Woodson Daniel, John Smith, George Reeves, Johnston County, December 28, 1763.
- A deed from William Cloud to William Reeves was proved in open court by George Reeves, Johnston County, January 17, 1765.
- Orange County Court Minutes May 1765 - A deed of sale from George Reaves to James Howell for 200 acres of Land was proved in open Court by the oath of William Speed and was ordered to be Registered.
- George Reeves sold land to Elliot Buchannon on New Light (originally part of tract granted to Aquilla Sugg by Granville in 1765), February 20, 1765. A deed from George Reeves to Elliot Buchannon was proved in open court, Johnston County, October 15, 1765. George Reves referenced as former owner of land Elliott Buchanon was deeding to Thomas Chaster on the New Light Creek and Poplar Branch, July 7, 1766.
- George Reeves was fined 40 Shillings for not attending as Petit Juror, Johnston County, July 16, 1765.
- George Reeves was appointed constable “in the room of Silas Monk”, Johnston County, October 15, 1765.
- Timothy Shaw was appointed overseer of the road in the “room of George Reevs”, Johnston County, July 15, 1766.
- George Reeves referenced in deed from Cornelius Keith to Joshua Perry for land in St. Stephen's Parish, August 6, 1766.
- The court ordered a “Spa” issue to cause George Reavs and Alexr Ohannon to appear at the next court to prove a deed from wm. Malet to John Sullivent, Johnston County, April 21, 1767.
- George Reeves deeded 200 acres to Thomas Chaster on the New Lite Creek, near Poplar Branch (originally part of tract that Equler Sugg obtained from Granville), October 8, 1767.
It appears as though both Richard Burton and George Reeves sold their property in Johnston County around 1765 which would coincide with the appearance of both men in the New River area around 1767. Additionally the above court order of July 15, 1766 where Timothy Shaw is replacing George Reeves as overseer of the road would be a result of George Reeves removal from Johnston County. Lyman Chalkley’s abstracts of Augusta County indicates that George Reves arrived in (then) Augusta County in 1767:
- Beavins (Blevins) vs. Newell [O. S. 174; N. S. 62] Bill, 27th September, 1805. In 1765 or 1768 Andrew Baker settled and made an improvement on land under the Loyal Company now in Grayson County. Several years afterwards he sold to Jeremiah Harrison, who also removed to and lived on the land for some time, and sold to James Mulkey, who settled and lived on the land and then sold to James Blevins, father of orator John Blevins, 1772. James then moved to the land, where he resided until his death, in 1801. In 1790 James Newel made an entry on the lands. George Reves deposes that Andrew Baker was the first settler on the land, in 1768. Copy of survey of 1,000 (4,400?) acres (known as the Peach Bottom) surveyed for Peter Jefferson, Thomas and David Meriwether, and Thos. Walker, March 16, 1753.
- John Cox vs. Newell [O. S. 174; N. S. 62] Similar suit to above. Orator settled in the Loyal Grant in 1765 opposite to Andrew Baker. Enoch Osborn deposes, 1809, that Captain Jno. Cox settled on the Peach Bottom 44 or 45 years ago. George Collins deposes, 1809, he settled there 41 or 42 years ago. George Reves deposes, 1809, that he was present in the New River area as early as 1767.
From the Montgomery County Court Order Book, Nov. 8, 1780 -
Ordered that George Reeves be restored his property that was taken from him by the Militia of Washington County and part of the Militia of this County, as several witnesses hath appeared here in Court in his favour and none against him. James Howell, same. (Note - could this be the same James Howell to whom George sold 200 acres in Orange County NC in May of 1765?)
George Reeves and several others had apparently been accused of loyalist activities but were found to be completely innocent and exonerated through the above court opinion.
The court considered a recommendation for George Reves to be a lieutenant in McDonald's Company in Montgomery County on April 3, 1782.
George is recorded on the 1782 land tax listing of Montgomery County with 300 acres and also recorded on the personal property tax listing with 1 white tithe and 3 slaves. He appears again on the 1787 tax list of Montgomery County with 100 acres. In 1789 he was living in Grassy Creek/Fox Creek area of Grayson County near Daniel, Elisha and John Blevins, Robert Osborne and Ezeiel Young. The New River area changed state and county designations several times. In 1787, George Reeves and son Jesse are listed on the tax list of Montgomery County, Virginia. By 1793, both George, listed with 2 white male tithes over the age of 16, and Jesse, as the adult head of his own household, are listed in the tax lists of Wythe County, Virginia.
On the 26th of June 1784, George Reves signed the inventory and appraisal of the Estate of John Hash as one of the appraisers in Montgomery County, Virginia.
George Reaves received a grant for 200 aces on the waters of the New River in Montgomery County on May 18, 1796 and another for 100 acres on the north side of that river adjoining his own line on the west on May 30, 1796.
George Reeves Sr., and George Reeves Jr, are both listed as having 1 male over 21 on the 1800 Grayson County Personal Property Tax List. In 1805, the Grayson County Personal Property Tax List includes John Reeves in addition to George Reeves, Sr. and George Reeves, Jr. These three, George, Sr., George, Jr. and John Reeves were listed again on the 1810 Grayson County Tax List.
When the two youngest sons of William Reeves left Wake and relocated to Madison County, Kentucky, it was assumed that they both settled in Madison County at the same time. George Reeves, son of William, is documented as marrying in Madison County in January of 1801 but recent research of tax records of both Grayson County and Madison County, Kentucky reveal that only George Reeves arrived in Kentucky that early. On the 1801 tax list of Grayson County, Jeremiah Reeves is listed along with George Reeves, Sr. and George Reeves, Jr. in Grayson County. Presumably as he traveled to Kentucky, Jeremiah stayed over with his relatives in Grayson County long enough to be taxed there. Jeremiah was taxed for his one tithe, several slaves and a few horses.
George Reeves was recorded as a Captain of the militia, Grayson County on March 24, 1807 and George Reeves, Jr. was a Constable of Reeves’ Company, Grayson County on the same date.
The 1811 Grayson County, Virginia Court Order Book recorded that George Reeves, Esq. by an instrument of writing directed to the court resigned his commission of Justice of the Peace for Grayson County.
It may also be of interest that Jeremiah Reeves is again listed on the Grayson VA tax list of 1811 which may be an indication that he returned to assist the family when George Reeves died in 1811.
Matthew Dicky, David Cox, Joseph Fielder and William Bourn were ordered to appraise the personal estate and slaves of George Reeves, Sr., deceased, and make report thereof, Grayson County Court Orders, August 1811. An inventory and appraisement of the personal effects of George Reeves Sr. was returned to court in Grayson County, November 15, 1811. Listed in the inventory were Jane Reeves, widow of George Reeves, Sr., William Reeves, Jesse Reeves, one of the appraisers or administrators. The inventory and appraisement was returned to the Court and ordered to be recorded February 1812 in Grayson County.
Jane Burton Reeves appears to have survived George Reeves for approximately 5 years. She is listed on the Grayson County Tax Lists along with her youngest son John through 1816, after which she disappears.
Other lore regarding George Reeves' origins has indicated that his father was Thomas Reeves, Sr., son of Henry Reeves of Essex County, Virginia; however, Y Chromosome DNA has proved that to be incorrect. Three of George Reeves' descendants who have participated in the Reeves' DNA Project match three descendants of William Reeves of Wake County, North Carolina and are grouped with DNA Group 6A. Two other descendants do not match these other descendants of George Reeves or William Reeves. Also, none of these eight individuals match the documented descendants of Henry Reeves in DNA Group 9.
1The wife of Richard Burton was previously believed to be Mary; however all records for Richard Burton prior to around 1765 list his wife as Ann. In Apr 1765: Exhibited into court, a sale and inventory of the estate of James Farmer, decd, by Mary Burton, Executrix. Recorded in Johnston Co, NC County Court Minutes. Research by Burton Family researchers indicates that Ann Burton died sometime before 1765 after which Richard Burton married Mary, the widow of James Farmer who had died in 1761 in Johnston County.
Orange County N.C. Court Minutes, 1752-1761
Deed Records of Johnston County, NC
Chalkney's Chronicles of the Scotch-Irish Settlement, Vol 2, p. 143
Tax Lists of Extinct Fincastle County, VA
Montgomery County VA Court Order Book
Montgomery County VA Deeds & Wills Bk B, Wills Section pg 65
Tax Lists of Montgomery County, VA
Tax Lists of Grayson County, VA
Antebellum Grayson County, Virginia Militia
Deed Records of Grayson County, VA