Sunday, October 28, 2007

James Lea of Cobb's Creek

Created by Spiritsouth

James Lea of Cobbs Creek, North Carolina
St. Lawrence District
(Most of this area ended up in eastern Person County in 1791)

The subject of this time line has been assigned birth dates from 1737 to 1753 by various researchers; none of which are documented. It is clear from various supporting documents that he was the son of William Lea,  and the oldest or first Lea to migrate from Virginia. Every attempt to establish a specific birth date without documentation becomes problematic for historians.

Ca. 1753 James Lee/Lea married Lawrence Bankston’s daughter –
probably in Orange County, North Carolina (Deposition of James Lee/Lea 1793, 1794, 1797http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=df4zs446_3f6kdgq).

1755: Tax List?  Was this James Lea of Cobb's Creek at age two years old (birth date 1753)?  Or was this James Lea of Cobb's Creek birth date 1733 at age 18 years??  Or is the James Lea on the tax list of 1755 James Lea of Kilgore's Branch?

16 Apr 1770: Abstracts of Orange County deeds show that on April 16, 1770, James Lea sold to Francis Carney one hundred acres on both sides of Cobbs Creek, part of a larger tract that his father, William Lea, purchased from Davis Collins in 1755. John Lea witnessed this deed.

18 Oct 1771: James sold to Thomas Donilson one hundred acres on both sides of
Richland Creek of South Hico, adjacent L. Van Hook with John Lea as witness. Richland Creek is in present-day Person County, and would be part of St. Lawrence District, according to the maps.[1]

1777: James Lea paid taxes in St. Lawrence District in 1777 and 1780, along with William, Sr., Zachariah, three Johns, Richard, Barnett, Ambrose, and so forth. The Caswell County tax lists show that Andrew ‘Bankson’ paid taxes in St. Lawrence District in 1777.[2]

1779: The abstracts of Caswell County deeds show that Peter Bankston purchased one hundred and fifty acres from his father, Lawrence Bankston, on the north side of North Hico Creek in 1779. Other deeds involving Jacob Bankston and James Bankston put Lawrence’s land on Panther Creek, near Henry Fuller. Henry also gave a deposition about the Bankstons.

13 Oct 1783: James Lea mentioned as neighbor in state land grant to Richard Escridge on Cobb Creek; also John McFarland, Thomas Wilson, and Widow Lea.

10 Nov 1784: James Lea mentioned as a neighbor in a state land grant to Richard Lea for 125 acres on Cobbs Creek

16 Jul 1785: James Lea, son of William Lea, deceased, sold to Barnett Lea 112 acres on east side of Cobb’s Creek. James Lea witnessed. (Two James Leas)

16 Jul 1785: James Lea purchased from George Lea 268 acres on both sides of Cobbs Creek, adjacent Stafford. James Lea witnessed (two men named James Lea).

1785: St. Lawrence District, James Lea, son of William Lea, deceased, sold one
hundred and twelve acres to Barnett Lea on the east side of Cobb’s Creek. Another man named James Lea witnessed this deed. On that same day, a James Lea purchased land on Cobb’s Creek from George Lea, with the other James Lea witnessing (two men named James Lea)

1790 U.S. Federal Census St. Lawrence District, Caswell County, NC
St. Lawrence District shows James, Zachariah, two Williams, Barnett, George, Richard, Abner and Carter Lea. Some of these same names appear in the Cobbs Creek area in the land records.

1793: James Lea of Cobb’s Creek appeared in printed, abstracted deeds of Person County

1794: James Lea, Sr. paid taxes in St. Lawrence District of Person County, along with
Richard, Abner, Benn., Barnett, William, Ambrose, William, Jr., Carter, John, George, William, Sr., and Nancy Lea.

1795: The same names appear paying taxes in St. Lawrence District of Person County.

1796: James Lea of Cobb’s Creek appeared in printed, abstracted deeds of Person County

1797: James Lea of Cobb’s Creek appeared in printed, abstracted deeds of Person County

1800 U.S. Federal Census - James Lea of Person County, which appears to have taken in
Gloucester District, was over forty-five years of age. Near him were Richard Lea, Benjamin Lea, Abner Lea, ‘Ambous’ Lea, John Lea and George Lea.[3] This would have been the James of Kilgore’s Branch. The deeds show two James Leas in this area, with James, Sr. designated as the father of Gabriel. James, Jr. first appeared with that designation in 1784. Herndon Harralson lived in Gloucester District as well. They may have lived very near the county line, as Gabriel appeared with Caswell County’s borders in 1800. This James of the 1800 census in Person County may well be the same who gave the 1797 deposition

1802: ‘H. Haralson’ witnessed one of James’ purchases. Henry Williamson and Pulliam
Williamson, who gave depositions concerning the Bankstons, lived on Story’s Creek in 1802, which is located in the north-central part of present-day Person County.[4]

30 Oct. 1802: William Lea, Sr. of South Hico wrote a will, in which he named son,
George, and grandson, Benjamin Lea. William bequeathed something to the daughter of grandson, Benjamin Lea, suggesting that William had reached quite an advanced age to have a grown great-granddaughter. (Court and Probate Records).

Mr. Rose offers clarification on the two Benjamin Leas found in the area. In the previous research report, it was erroneously reported that only one Benjamin appeared in the records of the area. While only one appeared in the 1800 census of Person County, another man by that name lived in Caswell County then. The Benjamin of Caswell County is believed to be the son of John Lea and his wife, Winneyferd, as mentioned in the will of his father. The other Benjamin, a resident of Person County, was the son of James Lea of Cobb’s Creek, as demonstrated by his will written in 1803. Which Benjamin was intended in the will of Capt. William Lea, named as his grandson, is unclear at this point

7 Sept 1803: James Lea, Sr. wrote a will in which he named sons Richard, Abner, and
Benjamin, as well as several daughters.

1805: Tax List shows James Lea, Sr. in Capt. Sargent’s Company, with some of the same
names shown in the 1794 and 1795 lists. These included George, Richard, Ben, William, Barnett, Carter, and Abner. He is likely the same man who wrote his will on September 7, 1803, in which he named sons Richard, Abner, and Benjamin, as well as several daughters.[5]

1807: Printed, abstracted deeds of Person County show that James Lea of Cobb’s Creek
in Capt. Sargent’s Company, with some of the same names shown in the 1794 and 1795 lists. These included George, Richard, Ben, William, Barnett, Carter, and Abner. He is likely the same man who wrote his will on September 7, 1803, in which he named sons Richard, Abner, and Benjamin, as well as several daughters.[6] The 1800 census of Person County shows a James Lea, over forty-five, near Richard, Benjamin, and Abner. It appears that James, Sr. was the son of William, Sr., since James named a son, Benjamin, in his will, and William named a grandson, Benjamin in his will. If this James were the same who married a Bankston girl around 1750, as indicated in the deposition, then William would have been about one hundred years old at he time of his death. Although William’s will does not mention James as one of his sons, George Lea served as executor of James’ estate, and George was the son of William. It appears that James chose his brother to serve as executor, a logical choice.

Bef. 1816: Death of James Lea of Cobb’s Creek; he named his wife, Elizabeth, in his
will. Ben Rose “guessed” that her father was Capt. William Lea.

A county history of Caswell County does not offer much about the Lea family. But a vague description of the taxing and militia districts is given, with the eastern part of the county containing St. Lawrence District, and the western part to include Richmond and Gloucester Districts.[7] The eastern half of the county would become Person County in 1791.

Another Person County source, pertaining to land and tax records, shows a map of the various militia and taxing districts of Orange County, as it existed in 1774. Caswell consisted of St. Martin’s, St. David’s, Richmond and Glouster (Gloucester) Districts, while Person took in St. Lawrence, Dunsmore (Nash), St. Luke’s and St. James Districts.

The Bankston family lived in the area of Panther Creek and Lynch’s Creek, found in the southeast part of Caswell County, as tributaries of North Hico Creek. The Caswell County tax lists show that Andrew ‘Bankson’ paid taxes in St. Lawrence District in 1777.[8] The abstracts of Caswell County deeds show that Peter Bankston purchased one hundred and fifty acres from his father, Lawrence Bankston, on the north side of North Hico Creek in 1779. Other deeds involving Jacob Bankston and James Bankston put Lawrence’s land on Panther Creek, near Henry Fuller. Henry also gave a deposition about the Bankstons

(Sources: Raquel Lindaas, AG, Heritage Consulting, Inc., Salt Lake City, UT 2005
Research report for and by Rev. Cynthia Forde)

Miscellaneous:

The following information re: James Lea of Cobb’s Creek comes from Jim Jessee’s website 26 October 2007 –

Will and Name Source: The Rev. Dr. Cynthia Fordemailto:spiritsouth@gmail.com Sent: Monday, March 13, 2006 7:46 PMSubject: February Court 181679 James Lea - Will - dated 7 Sept 1803. Sons Abner, Richard, and Benjamin; daughters: Naomah Setterfield, Frankey Lea, Nicey Chandler, and Annis Lea.Exec. George Lea, John McFarland. wit. John McFarland, Geor. Lea, Richard Eskeridge.New E-Mail Address:spiritsouth@gmail.com

Jim Jessee – Jessee Genealogy Service: jim@jessee.org
http://worldconnect.rootsweb.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=jimjessee&id=I5259


James (Cobbs Creek) Lea While I am in disagreement with Ben Rose about the identity of the James Lea who was the brother of William Lea... his material is being quoted, "The following is from Report of Research on the Lea Family in Virginia & North Carolina Before 1800, Ben L. Rose (1984) at 123-124:
James Lea of Cobbs Creek & South Hico. We can identify this James Lea when, on Apr 16, 1770, he signed a deed to Francis Carney for 100 acres "on both sides of Cobbs Creek, being part of a larger tract that the said James Lea's father, named William Lea, purchased of Denis Collins by a deed bearing date June 7, 1775". This James Lea, as we see by this deed, was the son of William Lea who was quite probably "William Lea of Cobbs Creek" and who was dead in 1762. In a deed dated Jul 16, 1785, by which he sold 268 acres "on both sides of Cobb Creek" to George Lea, he identified himself as "James Lea, son of William Lea dec'd". On the same date in another deed, by which he sold 112 acres "on the east side of Cobb Creek" to Barnett Lea, he described himself in the same manner (as "son of William Lea dec'd"). Because of this self-identification, I believe that this is the James Lea who, in 1784, entered into the records of Caswell Co a Letter of Attorney in which he also described himself as "James Lea, son & heir of William Lea, dec'd, of Caswell Co" and in which letter he empowered Thomas Phelps of Caswell Co to sue for title to "a certain tract of land lying in King & Queen Co Va, containing 25 acres on the waters of Mattapone River, lying near Maddison Mill . . . which land fell to me by the line of heirship." After selling his land on Cobbs Creek, this James Lea apparently moved to South Hico where he purchased land in Aug 1789 and where he lived until his death. His will, written in Sep 1803 and proved in Feb 1816 in Person Co, names his seven children: Abner, Richard, Benjamim, Naamah, Frankey, Nicey and Anness, but does not mention his wife. It is my guess that this James Lea married Elizabeth Lea, daughter of Capt. William Lea, and that she died between Oct 1802, when Capt Lea wrote his will, and Sep 1803, when James Lea wrote his will. This James Lea does not appear in Virginia records, either because he was born after his father moved to North Carolina or because, when he lived in Virginia, he was quite young."
Father: William "of Cobbs Creek" LEA b: ABT 1714 Mother: Mary "Polly" BARNETT b: AFT 1712 in , , VAMarriage 1 Elizabeth birth and marriage date undocumented
Children
Abner LEA b: AFT 1750 in Orange Co, later, Person Co., NC
Richard LEA b: AFT 1750 in Orange Co, later, Person Co., NC
Benjamin LEA b: AFT 1750 in Orange Co, later, Person Co., NC
Frances "Frankey" LEA b: AFT 1750 in Orange Co, later, Person Co., NC
Naomah (Naamah NAOMI) Lea b: AFT 1750
Eunice "Nicey" LEA b: AFT 1750 in Orange Co, later, Person Co., NC
Anness (Annis) LEA b: AFT 1750 in Orange Co, later, Person Co., NC


William Lea of Cobb’s Creek, d. bef. 1762, was the father of James Lea of Cobb’s Creek
William Lea of Cobb’s Creek replaced Lawrence Bankston as commissioner of Roads (Early Granville County Records).

*The exact number and names of all of William Lea’s children is not known.

* He was the father of Zachariah Lea (who had a daughter Mary Bangston – named in Zachariah’s will).

* There is a possibility that he was the father of the early Henry Lea/Lee found in the early records of Edgecombe County, NC who may have been the same who witnessed James Lea of Country Line Creek’s will – and in his own will named “James Lea, my brother-in-law (Source: Wills in Caswell County. (Copy of Will) 1774, LEA, HENRY, Elizabeth, Francis).

Source: "The Heritage of Caswell County North Carolina 1985", Jeannine D. Whitlow, Editor, published by the Caswell County Historical Association [PO Box 278, Yanceyville, NC 27379] in cooperation with the Hunter Publishing Co., 1985, Winston-Salem, NC; page 355, Article #444 on William Lea Family by Katherine Kerr Kendall.This article provided or verified some of the descendants information recorded here, and the following quotation."One of the first Leas in the Orange-Caswell area was William Lea of Cobb's Creek. He had purchased tracts of land on Cobb's Creek both sides from Dennis Collins on June 7, 1755. In 1771 from Orange Co. deeds James Lea, his son, sold 100 acres to Francis Carney and described it as being part of the land bought by his father William Lea. Cobbs Creek is near Leasburg. In 1757 William Lea was a Justice of the Peace in Orange Co., served on the orphan's court in 1758, commissioner of a road in 1758, replacing Lawrence Bankston and later William Armstrong. William Lea died 1762 intestate. A book of administrations of Orange Co. shows Mary and John Lea were co-administrators of his estate. At the estate sale Mary Lea purchased most of the personal effects.""The widow, Mary Lea, survived her husband over 20 years. She may have been his second wife. Dr. A. E. Casey projects her maiden name was Barnett. Mary Lea died testate before April 1785 naming in her will daughter Sarah Runnels (Reynolds), son George Lea and "all her children". Executors were James Lea and son George Lea. Her son George qualified. Mary Lea appears on the 1777 tax list of Caswell Co., and valued her assets at over 900 pounds. On 1780-82 tax lists they are together, George and Mary Lea listing 268 acres of Cobb's Creek. By 1784 with her demise George Lea lists the 268 acres and 4 black polls. George Lea remains on the tax lists on Cobb's Creek with the same acreage. On Feb. 24, 1785 he married Jane Douglas, saw service in the Revolutionary War, was first a Captain and later Colonel in the NC Militia. Although he lived most of his life in Person Co. and served in the NC General Assembly from Person Co., his will was probated in Caswell Co. at April Court, 1830. He probably owned land in both counties. His deceased daughter Mary Logan Lea had married John Johnston on January 8, 1806, having children Jennett Logan and Sally Stanfield. George Lea's son William Archer married Susan Cochran."
[1] Document 16: William D. Bennett, Orange County Records, Vol. III, Deed Book 3 Abstracts (Raleigh: p. p., 1990).
[2] Document 17: Caswell County, North Carolina Tax Lists, 1777, 1780, & 1784 (Miami Beach, FL: TLC Genealogy, 1990).
[3] Document 7: Heritagequestonline.com, U. S. Federal Census 1800, Person NC, p. 310.
[4] Document 12: Katharine Kerr Kendall, Person County, North Carolina Deed Books 1792-1825 (Baltimore: Clearfield Co., 1993).
[5] Document 13: Katharine Kerr Kendall, Person County, North Carolina Compilations: Land Grants, 1794, 1805, 1823 Tax Lists, Record Books Abstracts, 1792-1820, Letters of Attorney (Raleigh: p. p., 1982).
[6] Document 13: Katharine Kerr Kendall, Person County, North Carolina Compilations: Land Grants, 1794, 1805, 1823 Tax Lists, Record Books Abstracts, 1792-1820, Letters of Attorney (Raleigh: p. p., 1982).
[7] Document 11: William S. Powell, When the Past Refused to Die: A History of Caswell County, North Carolina, 1777-1977 (Durham, NC: Moore Publishing Co., 1977).
[8] Document 17: Caswell County, North Carolina Tax Lists, 1777, 1780, & 1784 (Miami Beach, FL: TLC Genealogy, 1990).

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