Ryves, William (c1636 OXF - )

Ryves, William

Rives, William


Father: Timothy Rives
Mother: Elizabeth

Birth: About 1636, Woodstock, England
Birth Source: Reliques of the Rives

Death Source:



James Rives Childs' "Reliques of the Rives" showed William to be the first Rives in Virginia and the father of George, Robert, John, and Timothy. However, Childs later came to believe that William's half-brother Timothy could have been the first Rives in America and the father of these four sons.

Childs had two records of a William Rives in 1684 and 1695. There is no evidence that this William was the son of Timothy b 1588 or that he was the father of John, George, Robert, and Timothy.

There was a William Reeves who died in 1698/9 in Northumberland County, VA. No evidence has been found to link him to Timothy Rives. Margery Lunseford filed to become administrator of the will of William Reeves, deceased, Northumberland County, January 19, 1698/9.

Here is a transcription of page 1 of Amendments to Reliques of the Rives:
Twenty-eight years ago I published Reliques of the Rives (Lynchburg, 1929) and since that time certain corrections and additions have been made available by correspondents or as the results of subsequent research. As in all probability the original work will never be reprinted and as it had a fairly wide distribution, the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography has offered me the hospitality of its pages to note the emendations which I would now make in my work if a new edition were ever issued.
When the book was written I offered the conjecture that William Rives was the emigrant ancestor. I have recently had occasion to question this assumption. The basis for the birth of William to Timothy Ryves and his wife of Oxford (pp. 74-75) was the slightest, and his presence in Surry County, Virginia, was made evident only as a tithable in 1684 and 1695. Mr. Laurence B. Gardiner, of Memphis, has recently put me on what I believe is a surer track. He has brought my attention to the discovery of a Charles City Cocunty Order Book for 1687-1695 where, on page 421, there is found: "Capt. Henry Batte ordered to assign and swear appraisers of Estate of Timothy Rieve" (the French pronunciation of the name apparently still persisting). I suggest now the likelihood that this Timothy "Rieve" or Rives was the emigrant ancestor and that he was identical with 206. Timothy Ryves, born 1625, son of Timothy and Mary Ryves of Oxford (p. 51), and that he was the father of George, Robert, John, and Timothy Rives, of Virginia. The William Rives living in Surry I 1684 and 1695 may well have been another son of this Timothy. At any rate I advance the hypothesis as one for future investigators to bear carefully in mind.


Childs, James Rives. Amendments to Reliques of the Rives, The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, 1957, page 350.