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B.2. William Berry {B.2.}

 


    William Berry {B.2.} was born at an unknown location, although it seems likely that his birth place was either Scotland or northern Ireland. Depending on when the Berry family emigrated from the old country, there is a possibility that he could have been born in Virginia or Pennsylvania, but Scotland or Ireland seem more likely locations. His birth date is also unknown, but a rough estimate can be derived indirectly from the estimated birth date of his wife's siblings, as well as from estimated birth dates of his own siblings and his first cousin. 


   William Berry married Jane MaGill (~1723 - ?), one of eight children of William MaGill, Sr.116,265,322 Documented birth dates for Jane MaGill's siblings are not available, but there are undocumented dates from several sources for some of them. Esther MaGill is believed to have been born in 1720. Ann MaGill's birth date has been given as 1722. Birth dates for James MaGill have been variously given as 1714, 1715 and 1724. William MaGill, Jr.'s birth date is cited as either 1715, 1725 or 1726. John MaGill's birth date has been cited as being 1728 or 1729, and Elizabeth Eleanor MaGill's birth date has been noted as being after 1715, 1719 and 1721.116,117,169,321,322 While there is not complete agreement on the dates for these individuals, they all fall within a range extending from 1714 through 1729. If they are approximately correct, then Jane MaGill was probably born sometime during this time period with an average guess being about 1720. Estimated birth dates for William Berry's siblings (derived mostly in this report) range from 1716 through 1742 with the bulk of the date estimates occurring in the 1716 through 1725 range.321 Thomas Berry, who is believed to be a first cousin of William Berry, is noted to have been born in 1718.7,96,99 Assuming that William Berry was approximately the same age as his wife (which is not necessarily true), and was probably born when most of his siblings were born, as well as his cousin, a best guess for William Berry's birth date would be around 1720. 


   As noted above, at an unknown date and place, William Berry married Jane MaGill, a daughter of William MaGill. While the place of their marriage remains lost to history at the present time, it is possible to estimate an approximate date. John Berry, who is most likely their oldest son, was born about 1742, so the marriage probably took place a year or so prior to that date.20 An estimated marriage date of 1740, thus, seems to be a reasonable guess. Since neither the Berrys nor the MaGills were living in Augusta County, Virginia at this time, but more likely in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, it seems inescapable to assume that the Berrys and MaGills must have lived near each other wherever they lived before they moved to Augusta County, and that William Berry and Jane MaGill were married at that location.


   Jane's father, William MaGill, Sr. was born in either northern Ireland or Scotland, and emigrated to Bucks County, Pennsylvania in 1726 or 1727. If the estimated birth date for Jane is close to being correct, then she was probably born in the old country - most likely northern Ireland.265,322 Am 1838 letter written by John MaGill, a grandson of William MaGill, Sr., to John's nephew, Caleb MaGill, however, stated that William Berry married Sarah MaGill not Jane MaGill.169,231 He identified all of the men that married William MaGill's daughters, but it appears that he mismatched two of the daughters and husbands. The proof for this conclusion lies in several Augusta County court entries (shown in the timeline below) that identify a woman named Jane as William Berry's wife. Hugh Campbell, Robert Fowler and John Jones, the other sons in law of William MaGill can easily be identified in these court records, and there are no other individuals named William Berry living in or near the Augusta County area at this time. The fact that these records connect William with Jane and that no other William Berry lived in the area, clearly show that William Berry actually married Jane MaGill instead of Sarah MaGill, as noted in the 1838 letter.


   William Berry wrote his will on 16 February 1791, identifying his children. Since he failed to mention his wife, a reasonable assumption is to believe that she had already passed away by that time. One source, however, gives her date of death as 1793 in Rockbridge County, Virginia.117 Since she appeared in Augusta County records in the spring of 1764, Jane must have passed away sometime between 1764 and 1791. In early 1793, William Berry's will was proved in court, thus bracketing William's death as occurring sometime between 16 February 1791 and 5 February 1793. 

 

Timeline of William Berry and Jane MaGill

 

18 June 174621,374

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 1, page 128-130
THIS INDENTURE made the Eighteenth day of June in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and forty six BETWEEN Zeruiah Borden, Widow of the County of frederick and Benj.a Borden of the County of augusta in the Colony of Virginia Executors of the last Will and Testament of Benj.m Borden late of Orange County Gent deceased of the one part and Wm Berry of the Same County in the Colony aforesaid of the other part WHEREAS the said Benjm. Borden the Testators in his lifetime was Seized in his demesne as of fee of and in Several Tracts and parcels of Land Situate lying and being in the Colony of Virginia aforesaid as also of some lands and Tenements in New Jersey and being so thereof seized made his last will and testament in writing bearing date the third day of April one thousand seven hundred and forty two and therein and thereby among other things did declare it to be his will that all Lands and Estate that he had in New Jersey should be sold and all his Lands at Buls---? and his land on Smith Creek and North Shenado and all his ---?--- every where and all his Lands on the Waters of James river and all the rest of his Lands should be sold excepting five thousand acres of land that was all good and except the Land he then lived on: And did constitute and appoint his wife the s.d Zeruiah Executrix and his son the said Benj.a Borden and his son in law Wm. Fernly Excutors of his said wills and to execute Deeds for the Lands he had sold and had by his said will ordered to be sold as by his said will duly proved and remaining of record in the said County Court of Frederick ___ being thereunto had may more fully and at large appear and whereas the said William Honeley hath failed to prove the said will or act as an Executor and whereas the said Testator in his Life time had agreed to sell and Convey the fee simple Estate of and in and hundred & forty five Acres of Land lying and being in that part of Organge County comonly called Augusta in the Colony aforesaid unto the said William Berry for and in Consideration of five shillings Current Money of Virginia to him in hand paid by the said William Berry wh. land is part of a Large Tract of Ninety two thousand one hundred acres granted the said Testator by pattent bearing date of November the fifth in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred & thirty nine as rolation[?] being thorounto[?] had may more fully and at Large appear and is bounded as followeth viz BEGINNING at A an Elm and white Thorn by the Side of Moffets Creek thence North fifty five degrees West one hundred and twenty four poles to a Chestnut oak at a hill th: South fifty six degrees West thirty three poles to Elizabeth Hunters Corner th with her line South fifty five deg.s West twenty pols th: South Twenty three degrees West one hundred and Seventy six poles to a branch or run South twelve degrees East twenty Eight poles to a Stake by the Side of the aforesaid Creek th: up the Several Courses of the said Creek to the first mentioned Elm and thorn the place of beginning NOW THIS INDENTURE WITNESSETH that the said Zeruiah Bordon and Benj.a Borden for and in Consideration of the premises and of the Sum of five Shillings Currt Money of Virginia to them in hand paid by the said William Berry the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged ---?--- given granted bargained Sold Aliened Released and confirmed and by these presents do give grant bargain Sell alien Release and confirm unto Him the said Wm Berry his heirs and Assigns forever All the Estate Right Title Claim and demand of them the said Zeruiah Borden and Benj.a Borden their heris and Assigns of in or to the said one hundred and forty five acres of Land and the premises with the appurtenances and the Reversion and Reversions Remainer and Remainders and every part and parcel thereof together with all houses gardens orchards woods underwoods, swamps Marshes Low grownds Meadows fishing within the said bounds and the Rivers Waters and Water courses therein contained and all other properties Comodities and hereditaments whatsoever to the said one hundred and forty five Acres of Land belonging or on any wise appertaining TO HAVE AND TO HOLD the said one hundred and forty five acres of Land and (first line of this page not copied) the said Wm Berry his heirs and assigns forever, in as large and ample as is intended by the said Wills and the said Zeruiah Borden and Benj.a for themselves their heirs and assigns do covenant promise and agree with the said Wm Berry his heirs and assigns that the said William Berry heirs and assigns shall forever hereafter ----?-- hold use occupy poss[not copied] the said one hundred and forty five aces of land and premises with the [not copied]rances free and clear and freely and clearly acquitted and discharged from all and all Mannor of person or persons whatsoever. The quit rents due and payable to our Sovereign Lord the King his heirs and successors and ---?-- and lastly is further Covenant and agreed by and be[not copied] parties ----?------ -----?-- that they the s.d Zeruiah Borden and Benj.a ___ and their heirs the said one hundred forty five acres of Land a[not copied] with the appurtenances unto the said William Berry his heirs and ___ and will warrant and forever defend by these presents IN WITNESS the said Zeruiah Borden and Benj.a Borden have hereunto set their Seals the day and year first above written 
Sealed and delivered in presence of ___ the quit rents growing due and payable to our Sovereign Lord his heirs & successors foreprized before Signed By Virtue of a power to me Benj.a Borden Granted dated ---?--- ---?-- thousand Seven hundred and forty four and duly proved in Frederick [not copied] Courts I do sign Seal and acknowledge said Deed in name and behalf Zeruiah Bordon Executrix 
NB this one hundred fifty four acres is not of five thousand acres ---?-- [not copied] 
Jno Smith 
Zeruiah Borden [seal] 
Samson Archer 
Benj.a Borden 
Repentance Townsend

19 June 1746374

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 1, page 128-130
At a Court continued and held for Augusta County the 19th June 1746 Benj.a Borden acknowledges this his Deed for Land indented to Wm B__ by Virtue of a power of attorney given him by Zeruiah Borden ---?--- ---?--- acknowledge the said Deed in her behalf to s.d Wm Berry relinquished her right of Dower to Land in s.d Deed mentioned motion of s.d Berry is admitted record 
Test John Madison CC 
(Margin Notation beside last paragraph:) Ex.d dd to James Lyle the 19th day of Feb 1750]

1746180

Conveyances In Borden Tract 1741-1780
William Berry 145 (acres)--5s (shillings)--1746 (year of purchase)--Moffett Cr. (location)

12 Apr 174821

Augusta County, Virginia Parish Vestry Book, 
Administrator's Bonds, pg 16
John Montgomery and Francis McCown:18th January, processioned for Patrick Hays; 12th January, processioned for Samuel Dunlap, Pat Hays present; 12th January, processioned for Wm.Lockridge, Samuel Dunlap present; 18th January, processioned for JamesArcher, Richard Cousor present; 18th January, processioned for Wm. McCanless, Robt. Dunlapp present; Jno. Lowry, Robt. Dunlapp present; Robt.Dunlapp, Robert Lowry present; 14th January, processioned for Samuel Anderson, Wm. McCanless present; Geo. Henderson, Ro. Lowry present;Wm. Mitchell, Jas. Moore present; 15th January, processioned for Wm.Cowdon, Robert Bags present; Francis McCown, John Downy present;James Moore, Alexander Walker present; James Robinson, Jas. Walker present; 15th January, processioned for Alex. Walker, Jno. Walker present; 27th January, processioned for John Walker, James Walker present; processioned for James Walker, James Robinson present; processioned for Samuel McCutchen; processioned for James Shields; processioned for John Shields; processioned for Nathan Lusk; 28th January, processioned for Thomas Berry; processioned for Wm. Berry; processioned for James Trimble; processioned for James Martin; processioned for Joseph Coulton; processioned for Robert Coulton.

15 Nov 175221

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 5, page 533
Borden & Company to William Berry, 130 acres of 92,100; James Trimble's line, near Moffet's Creek; Thomas Berry's line; David Hay's run. 
Delivered: Wm. Martin July 1760.

1752180

Conveyances In Borden Tract 1741-1780
William Berry, 130 (acres)--5p 10s (pence/shillings)--1752 (year of purchase) 

20 Mar 175321,212

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book 5, page 125
Grants or any part thereof belonging or in any wise Appurtaining and the Reverse on and provisions Remainder and Remainders Rents Issues and profits thereof To have and to hold this sixty five acres of land be __ more or less and all and singular other the premises herby granted with the appurtenances unto this Thomas Berry his Executors Administrators and Assigns from the day before the Date ___ of for and during the ___ Form and ___ -fancy whole year from thence next Enjoining fully to be compleat and ended therefore the rent of the p___ on Lady day next if ___ shall be ___ fully Demanded to ___ and purpose thereby ___ of these presents ___ of the statute for transferring ___ to possession this Thomas Berry may be in actual possession of the premises and be thereby enabled to accept and take a grant and release of the Provision and inheritance thereof to him and his heirs In witness whereof this William Berry & Jane his wife have hereunto set their hands and seals the day and year first above written 
Sealed and delivered in the presence of 
William Berry (his mark) 
Jane (her mark)

21 Mar 1753212

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book 5, page 125
This indenture made the twenty first day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and fifty three between William Berry & Jane his wife of the county of Augusta of the one part and Thomas Berry of this county on the other part witneseth that for and in consideration of the sum of ten pounds ___ shillings current money of Virginia to this William Berry and Jane in the hand given (?) by this Thomas Berry at or before the seal__ ___ delivery of these presents the receipt thereof they doth thereby acknowledge and thereof doth release ___ and discharge this Thomas Berry his Executors and Administrators by these presents they their William Berry & Jane shall ___ bargained ___ released and confirmed and by these presents doth grant bargain sell ___ release and confirm unto this Thomas Berry ___ his actual possession now being by virtue of above ___ and sale to ___ ___ by this William Berry & Jane for one whole year by indenture ___ before the day of the date of the presents and by ___ (trans)ferring ___ possession and his heirs and assigns forever ___ containin (?) tract or parcel of land containing supply ___ ___ be the ___ more or less situate lying and being on the north side of Moffets Creek in ___ county of Augusta and is bounded as followeth to wit Beginning at an ___ of white thorns (?) on the north bank of sd creek and runneth thence north fifty five degrees west one hundred & twenty four poles to a chestnut oak or ___ thence south fifty six degrees west thirty three poles to David Hayes corner: with his line south fifty five degrees west seventy poles thence south twenty three degrees west twenty poles to a black oak & black gum on the north side of a great hill corner to said William Berry thence with his line south thirty eight degrees east one hundred & twenty poles to his corner a white oak saplin thence with another of his lines south forty degrees west fifty four poles to a hiccory saplin ___ south eighteen degrees west six poles to a post on this creek thence up the ___ courses of the creek to the beginning being part of a tract of one hundred & forty five acres of land granted unto this William as ___ by a deed from Roseniak (?) Borden & Benjamin Borden bearing date June xxiii MDCCXLVI and all houses buildings orchards way waters ___ profit & commodities Acreditsments (?) and Appurtenances __ ___ to this premises hereby granted or any part thereof belonging or in any wise appurtaining and the reversion and reversions remainder and remainders rents issues and profits thereof and also all the estate rights title interest use trust properly claim and demand whatsoever of them this Wiliam Berry & Jane of in and to the premises and all deeds evidences and ___ touching or in any wise concerning the ___ to have and (to hold) ______ (six)ty five acres of land as above ___ of ___ be the same ___ _______ singular other the premises is hereby granted & released ___ part ___ thereof with this __ were of them appurtenenances unto ___ (Thomas) Berry his heirs and assigns for ___ to the only proper use and behoos ___ (Thomas) Berry and of his heirs and assigns forever and this sd William (Berry) & Ja(ne) ___ them & ___ their heirs Executors and Administrators doth convened prime ___ ___ grant to and with this Thomas Berry his heirs and assigns ___ ___ that this William Berry & Jane ___ at ___ time of sealing and ___ presents are ___ of ___ ___ profit and in defineable ___ of ___ ___ simple of and on the premis whereby granted of ___ and that they have good ___ and Lawfull of ___ thereby ___ grant and convey the same to this Thomas Berry his heirs and (Assigns) in mannor and form ___ and that this premises now are and do ___ hereafter shall remain and be free and clear of and from all former debt ___ ___ grants & or ___ sales dours right and teller (?) of dower (?) judgements ___ ___ troubles charges and incumbrances whatsoever made & are committed ___ William Berry & Jane or any other person or persons whatso(ever) ___ hereafter to grow one and ___ to our sovereign _______ any ___ and ___ for and in ___ of this premises only excepted and ___ and lastly that this William Berry & Jane and their heirs all and singular the premises hereby granted and pre___ with their appurtenances ___ this Thomas Berry his heirs and assigns against them this William Berry & Jane and their heirs and all and any other person and persons whatsoever shall and will warrant and forever define by these presents In witness whereof this William Berry & Jane his wife have hereunto to set their hands and seals this day and year first above written 
William Berry (his mark) 
Jane (her mark)

20 Mar 1753212

At a court held for Augusta County
William Berry and Jane his wife she being first privately examined in open court acknowledged this their release for land indented to Thomas Berry which on the motion of the sd Thomas Berry is admitted to record 
Test John Madison

Aug. 1753369,402

Congregations of New Providence and Timber Ridge Presbyterian Churches
Petition Signers for Reverend John Brown 
Archibald Alexander, Francis Allison, Robert Allison, Francis Beaty, Charles Berry, Thomas Berry, William Berry, Magdalena Borden, Samuel Buchanan, William Caruthers, James Coulter, Robert Coulton, Samuel Davis, William Davis, John Davison, John Douglass, David Dryden, Thomas Dryden, Samuel Dunlap, James Eakin, Walter Eakin, John Edmiston, James Edmiston, William Edmiston, Andrew Fitzpatrick, Robert Gamble, Edward Gaor, Jacob Gray, Samuel Gray, William Gray, James Greenlee, William Hamilton, John Hawely, John Handley, Joseph Hay, Samuel Hay(s), Edmund Hearken, George Henderson, Robert Henry, Thomas Hill, John Houston Sr., John Houston Jr., Matthew Houston, Robert Houston, Samuel Houston, Joseph Kennedy, John Kerr, John Keys, Rodger Keys, Robert Kirkpatrick, William Lockridge, John Logan, John Lowry, John Lusk, James Lusk, William Lusk, Daniel Lyle, John Lyle, Matthew Lyle, Samuel Lyle, John Macky, Agnes Martin, Charles McAnelly, Edward McColgan, James McClung, James McClung Jr., widow McClung, Alexander McCluer, Nathaniel McCluer, Halbert McCluer, John McCrosky Sr., John McCrosky Jr., Alexander McCrosky, Samuel McCutchen, Samuel McDowell, Neal McGlister, Thomas McMurry, Baptist McNabb, John McNabb, Thomas McSpeden, Alexander Miller, John Mitchell, John Montgomery, Alexander Moore, John Moore, James Moore, John Patton, Samuel Paxton, Thomas Paxton, Nathan Peoples, Patrick Porter, Robert Reagh, William Reagh, Robert Robertson, James Robinson John, Robinson, Matthew Robinson, William Robinson, John Roseman, David Sayer, John Shields, John Smiley, William Smith, Widow Smith, John Sprowl, Andrew Steele, Samuel Steele, John Stuart, James Thompson, James Trimble, Moses Trimble, Alexander Walker, Alexander Walker, James Walker, John Walker, John Wardlaw, William Wardlaw, Robert Weir, Moses Whiteside, William Whiteside, Ann Wilson, John Winiston

18 Mar 175521

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 6, page 549
Joseph Kennedy to his son Wm. Kennedy, 402 acres purchased by Joseph from James Trimble, farmer, and by James from Borden on Moffet's Creek in Borden' tract; corner James Fulton; corner Alexander Logan; corner Wm. Berry.

22 Jan 175721

Augusta County, Virginia Order Book No. 24, page 444
Inquest, 22nd January, 1757, on John McCutchan, before Patrick Martin, acting coroner. Was accidentally killed by a tree falling on him. James Clark, Jr., William Clark, William Fulton, James Risk, Mathew Willson, Patrick Martin, Samuel McCutchan, James McCutchan, John Peny, John Risk, William Berry, James Trotter, Robert Campbell, George Berry, John Clark, James Clark (Sen.?), James McCleery, Hugh Fulton.

15 June 176421,256

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 11, page 596-597
THIS INDENTURE made the fifteenth Day of June in the Year of our Lord one Thousand Seven hundred and Sixty four BETWEEN William Berry of the County of Augusta Planter and Jane his wife of the one part and John Trotter of the same county and in the same Colony Planter of the other part WITNESSETH that for and in Consideration of the sum of Current Money of Virginia to the said William Berry and Jane in hand paid by the said John Trotter at or before the Sealing and Delivering of these presents the Receipt whereof they do hereby acknowledge and thereof do E_? acquit and discharge the said John Trotter his heirs Executors Administrators by these presents they the said William Berry and Jane his wife have Given Granted Bargained Sold Enfeoffed Aliened Released and Confirmed and by these presents do Grant Bargain Sell Enfeoff Alien Release and Confirm unto the said John Trotter and to his heirs and assigns forever one Certain tract or parcel of Land Containing two hundred and ten acres be the same more or less Situate lying on both sides of Moffets Creek being part of a Large tract of Land Commonly known by the name of Bordins Tract in said County of Augusta and is more particularly Discribed and Bounded as followeth Viz BEGINNING at a hiccory Saplin twenty twenty poles from Moffets Creek in William Clarks line running thence with said line south Seventy Degrees East two hundred and ninety one poles to two black oaks thence north twenty Degrees East one hundred and three poles to two hiccories thence North Seventy Degrees West twenty three poles to two Chesnuts a Chesnut oak and a white oak thence West one hundred and four poles with Thomas Berry's line to a hiccory thence North fifty Degrees West Sixty poles Crossing the Creek to a post on the North edge of said Creek in a line Corner to Thomas Berry's land Running thence with his line North Eighteen Degrees East Six poles to a hiccory Saplin thence North fifty Degrees East fifty four poles to a black gum and black oak thence South twenty three Degrees West one hundred and Eight Six poles to a post between a Spanish oak and a hiccory thence South ten Degrees East Sixteen poles crossing the Creek to a hiccory Saplin thence South Sixty three Degrees West thirty six poles to the BEGINNING And al houses Building Orchards Gardens ----?---- Improvement Woods ---?-- Marshes Swampts Meadows Ways Waters Watercourses Easements Profits Commodities Hereditaments thereto belonging or in anywise appurtaining and the Reversions and Remainders Rents Issues and profits thereof and also all the Estate Right Title Interest Use Trust property to Claim or demand whatsoever of the said William Berry and Jane either in Law or Equity of in or to the said premises and all Deeds Records evidences and Writings touching or in anywise Concerning the same TO HAVE AND TO HOLD the described two hundred and ten acres of Land hereditaments and premises to the Same more less and all and Singular other the premises hereby Granted and Released and Every part parcel and Member thereof with their parts privileges Incomes Advantages and Appurtenances unto the s.d John Trotter his heris and assigns forever To the only proper use and Behoof of him the s.d John Trotter and of his heirs and assigns forever and they the said William Berry and Jane for themselves thier heirs Executors and Administrators Doth Covenant promise and Grant to and with the said John Trotter and his heirs and assigns by these presents that the said William Berry and Jane have not Done Committed or Suffered any act matters Causes or thing whatsoever whereby the said two hundred and Ten acres of Land Hereditaments and premises or any part Parsal or member thereof are is shall or may be Impreached Charged. 
Margin Notation: Delivered to Jno _uningham _ 11th Augt. 1781 
(Transcriber's note: The deed does not continue on to the next page in this Deed Book 11. Careful checking did not find it on subsequent pages.)

10 Nov 1764256

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 11, page 714
THIS INDENTURE made the Tenth Day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and sixty four BETWEEN John Berry of the County of Augusta and Colony of Virginia of the one part and William Berry of the County and Colony aforesaid of the other Part WITNESSETH that for and in Consideration of the Sum of one hundred pounds Current Money of Virginia to the said John Berry in hand paid by the said William Berry at or before the day of Sealing and Delivery of these presents the Receipt whereof he doth hereby acknowldge and therof doth realeansequit and Discharge the said William Berry his heirs Executors and Administrators by these presents and and he the said John Berry Hath Granted Bargained Sold Aliened Released and Confirmed and by these Presents Doth Grant Bargain Sell Alien Release and Confirm into the said William Berry one tract of land Containing four hundred and twenty Seven acres in his actual possession now being by Virtue of a Bargain and Sale to him thereof made by the said John Berry for one whole year by Indenture bearing Date the Day next before the Day of the Date of these presents and by force of the Statute for transferring uses into Possession and his heirs on Certain tract or parcel of land Containing four hundred and twenty seven lying in augusta County in Burdin tract and this more particularly Discribed and Bounded as followeth BEGINNING at three Elms Corner to Alex. Miller and Runneth thence South Seventy three Degrees West Sixty five poles to a large white oak by a branch then North Ten Degrees west two hundred and Sixty poles to a white oak (there is a memorandum in the Lease Concerning this line) then South Eighty two Degrees East one hundred and thirty six poles to a Chesnut then North fifty East Seventy four poles to a white oak north forty Deg.s west twenty pole to a black oak then North fifty Deg.s East Sixty three poles to a black and Spanish oaks then South thirty nine Deg.s East three hundred and five poles to a large white oak on a hill South fifty Degrees west Seventy Eight pole to a white oak on a Stony hill then North forty three and half Deg.s west one hundred and Sixteen poles to a white oak then South forty nine Degrees west one hundred and fifty one poles to a hiccory & white oak Saplins north forty one Degrees West twenty Seven poles to a hiccory by a Branch South forty nine Degrees West fifty poles to a hiccory Saplin Grubb then South twenty nine Deg.s East fourteen poles to the BEGINNING and all Houses Building Orchards Ways Waters Water Courses Profits Commodities Hereditaments and Appurtenances whatsoever to the said premises hereby Granted or any part thereof belonging or in any wise appertaining And the Reversion and Reversions Remainder and Remainders Rents Issues and Profits thereof and also all the Estate Right Title Interest Use Trust Property Claim and Demand whatsoever of him the said John Berry of in and to the said Premises and all Deed Evidences and Writings touching or in any wise concerning the same TO HAVE AND TO HOLD the said four hundred and twenty seven acres of Land be the Same more or less unto the said William Berry his heirs and assigns forever and all and Singular other the premises hereby Granted and Released and every Part and parcel thereof with their and every of their appurtenances unto the said William Berry his heirs and assigns for ever to the only proper Use and Behoof of him the said William Berry and of his heirs and assigns forever And the said John Berry for himself his heirs Executors and Administators doth Covenant Promise and Grant to and with the said William Berry his heirs and Assigns by these presents that the said John Berry is now at the time of Sealing and Delivering of these Presents is seized of a good sure perfect and indefeasible Estate of Inheritance in fee Simple of and in the premises hereby Granted and Released and that he hath good power and lawfull authority to Grant and Convey the Same to the said William Berry and to his heirs and Assigns in manner and form aforesaid and that the said Premises now area and so forever herafter shall remain and be free and Clear of and from all former and other Gifts Grants Bargains Sales Dower Right and Title of Dower Judgments Executions Titles Troubles Charges and Incumbrances whatsoever made done Committed or Suffered by the said John Berry or any other person or persons whatsoever the Quit Rents hereafter to grow due and payable to our Sovereign Lord the King his heirs and Successors for and in Respect of the said premises only Excepted and foreprized AND LASTLY that the said John Berry and his heirs all and singular the premises hereby Granted and Released with their appurtenances unto the Said William Berry and to his heirs and assignes against him the said John Berry and his and his heirs and allow Every other Person and Persons whatsoever Shall and will warrant and forever defend by these presents IN WITNESS whereof the said John Berry hath hereunto Set his hand and Sealed the Day and year first above written 
SEALED AND DELIVERED John Berry (LS) 
IN THE PRESENCE OF 
[no witnesses names recorded] 

20 Nov 1764256

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 11, page 715
At a court held for Augusta County Nov 20th, 1764 
John Berry Acknowledged this his Release for Land to William Berry which is ordered to be Recorded.

15 Feb 176521

Augusta County, Virginia Parish Vestry Book 
Administrator's bonds, p. 385
Reported by Andw. Hall, Jas. Buchanan, viz: For John McCroskey, for Alex. Telford, for Rev. Jno. Brown, for William Patton, for Cap. Saml. McDowell, for James Greenlee, deceased; for Jno. Lyle, deceased; for David McCroskey, for Saml. Dunlap, for Jacob Anderson, for Andrew Hays, for Robt. Allison, for James Buchanan, for Andw. Buchanan, for Wm. Davies, for Wm. Berry, for James McKees, for Wm. Lusk, for Edward Tarr, for James McLang, for Henry McLang, for Isaac Anderson, for John Buntin, for William Young, for James Anderson, for James Thompson, for John Allison; for Alex. McCroskey, Jas. Duncan present; for Saml. Robinson, for Andw. Fitzpatrick.

1770180

Borden Tract Conveyances Rockbridge County 1741-1780
Telford, Alexander--40--7p--l770--corner to William Berry.

16 Aug 177021

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 16, page 438
Margaret Smith, wife of John Smith of Augusta County to Samuel McCutcheon, Sr. 12 pounds, a divers good reasons, horses, crops. 
Teste: James Crow and William Berry

10 October 1770211

Augusta County, Virginia Will Book 4, page 404
IN THE NAME OF GOD AMEN I John Berry of the County of Augusta and Colloney of Virginia being weakly of body but of perfect mind and Memory thanks be given to Almighty God there fore Considering the Mortallity of my body Knowing that it is appointed for all men once to die I do Make & Ordain this my last will and Testament that is to say Principally first of all I recommend and Commite my soul into the hands of Almighty God who gave it and my body to the Earth decently buried at the discretion of my Executor doubting nothing but I shall receive the same again by the Mighty Power of God at the General resurection and as Touching what estate it hath Pleased God to bless me with in this life I give devise & dispose of the same in the following Manner and form Impremis it is my Will and I do order that all my lawful debts and funeral charges be fully Paid and Satisfyed 
Item- unto Mary my Daughter one Pounds five shillings Curant money of Virginia I likewise give and bequeath unto John Neisbit six shillings and six Pence Curent Money of Virginia 
Item - I give and bequeath unto John Berry sun of James Berry deced. six Pounds Current Money of Virginia I give and bequeath unto John Berry sun of William Berry ten pounds Current Money of Virginia 
Item- I give & bequeath unto John Berry Sun of Francis Berry ten pounds Current Money of Virginia 
Item- I give & Bequeath unto Fra Berry Wheel right five pounds Current Money of Virginia 
Item- I give and Bequeath unto Mary Berry daughter of William Berry Fowar (4) Pounds Current money of Virginia 
Item I give and Bequeath to her Sister Elizabeth Berry Six pounds Current money of Virginia 
Item- I give and bequeath unto Elizabeth Berry Daughter of Charles Berry five pounds Current money of Virginia 
Item- I give & bequeath unto my Daughter Rebecca Berry twenty pounds Curent money of Virginia I likewise Constitute and appoint my trusty friends Alexander Walker Wheel wright & William Edmoston sole Executors of this my last will & Testament and do hereby disanul & revock all other Wills or Testament by me made declaring & Publishing this my last Will and Testament In witness whereof I have here unto set my hand & seal this tenth day of October in the year one thousand seven hundred and Seventy 
Published & Pronounced in the presence of us: 
John Walker 
John Walker, Junior John Berry 
James Walker 
Francis Berry 

9 Aug. 1771211

Augusta County, Virginia Will Book No. 4, page 446
We the subscribers being indefferently chosen by William Berry & Alex Walker Executors of the estate of John Berry dec.d to determine the funeral & other charges due to s.d Wm. Berry from the estate John Berry do unanimously agree that the amount whole is eight pounds ten shillings. Certified by us the 9th day of August A.D. 1771 
James Walker 
James W. Campbell 
Alesander Walker 
Andrew Hays

19 May 177321

Augusta County, Virginia Order Book No. 15, page 172
Robert Wardlaw appointed road surveyor, vice William Berry.

July 1779158

Rockbridge County, Virginia Tithable Lists 1778 - 1779
A list of Tithables Taken by Charles Campbell 
John McCroskey (1), Andrew Scott (3), Alexander Tedfoard (3), George Gall (1), David Bottorph (1), Philip Bottorph (1), James Wilson (2), John Wilson (1), James Wilson (2), Wm. Leard (1), Wm. Wilson (1), John Robinson (1), James Robinson (1), John Murphy (1), James Cotter (2), Arthur Beaty (1), James Wardlaw (2), Benjamine Blackburn (3), Samuel McChesney (5), Wm. Reaugh (1), Robt. Gay (2), James Scot (1), John McCampbell (2), Robt. Steel (3), Robt. Wardlaw (2), John McCulloch (1), Samuel Patterson (1), James Patterson (2), James McCampbell (3), David Beard (3), Alexr. Grear (1), John Ally (1), John Huston (2), Andrew Kenady (2), Wm. Berry (2?), Thomas Little (2), Thomas Alexander (1), John Wilson Sr. (2), Robt. Lowry (1), Wm. Edmiston (1), Archibald Henderson (1), James Snodgrass (1), James Kenady (1), John Kenady (1), John Carson (1), Billinsy Gibson (1), Samuel Lusk (1), Thomas Abit (1), John Nealson (1), Joseph Simpson (1), Chas. Campbell (2), James Crawford (1)

7 Sept. 1779124

Rockbridge County, Virginia Deed Book A, page 167
Archibald Alexander, Exc.r, and Magdalene Bowyer, Excr.x and Relict of Benjamin Borden, Gentleman, dec'd, to Alexander Tedford for £10: 40 acres next to sd. Teford's Land, and next to William Berry, David McCoskory and James Buchanan. 
Sg: Arch'h Alexander and Magdalen Bowyer 
Rec: 7 Sept. 1779 
Witts: none listed 
(Delv'd to James Teford, his son, 8 Jan. 1796).

6 May 178121

Augusta County, Virginia Will Book 6, page 173
An account of Estate of John Berry deceased 
The account of said estate 
Received in cash by Sundry persons 
the price of the land was twice put in this account and again deducted 
By the sale of the said Estate 
By cash the price of land sold 
Totle 
The price of the land deducted 
Amount of the Estate 
Amounts debts & legacies paid 
Balance due to the Estate 
Errors excepted 
Account of more debts paid by the Executor 
To Margaret Kirkpatrick 
To the sherrif for fees 46 lb Tobacco 
To John Berry Jun. 
To John Gilmore 
To William McFeeters 
To Samuel Neizbitt 
To fees 
To Eliz. Henry 
29.12.8 
Brought over 
Total 
Debts paid & Legacies by the Executor 
To George Berry for funeral charges 
To the Shirrif of Augusta 
To John Buchanan for crying the vendue 
To David McCrea for funeral Liquers 
To Luke Bowyer employed as Lawyer 
To Liquor for the Vendue 
To Anthony Kelly for a coffin 
To the remainder of a bond to Wm McFeeters 
To Margaret Rutherford for Bond 
To Capt. John Gilmore 
To William Berry
To George Matthews Shirref 
To John Stuart 
To William Berry
To James Berry 
To Rebecca Buchanan 
To Robert Franies (?) 
To Alexander McIlroy 
To George Berry 
To Charles Berry 
To Robert Kilpatrick 
To Robert Fanies (?) 
To George Gibson 
To William Gilmore 
To William Gilmore 
To Rebecca Kelly 
To Wm Moody 
To Gabril (?) Fortec (?) 
To William Berry
To Mary Johnson 
To James Wallace 
To Eliz. Bell 
To John McCrossory (?) 
To Andw Buchanan 
To James Coulter 
To Andrew McCampbell for Jn Berry Jun 
To Francis Berry 
To Eliz. Berry 
To Eliz. Berry 
To Mary Berry 
To John Berry 
To Mary Niezbitt 
To John Berry Shoemaker 
To Mary Berry 
To Samuel Lyle 
To Rebecca Gillesy 
To Eve_?_ 
To balance due the Estate 
Pursuant to an order of the court March 1781 We have examined the within account as it stands stated & find the amount thereof to be £242.19 and the debts paid 
Ballance due said Estate as per account on the hands of Alexander Walker Executor O.E. 
Test Elijah McClenachan William McFeeters 
At court Cont. and held for Augusta County May 16th 1781 
This account of the administration of the Estate of John Berry decd. was reported pursuant to an order of Court and Ordered to be Recorded 
Test.

 

£/s/d
170.6.4 
 


42.12.8 
124.0.0 
336.19 
124.0 
212.19 
170.3 
£42.15.8 
 

0.12.6 
0.3.10 
1.19.0 
0.12.4 
6.1.3 
0.6.6 
0.0.10 
5.0.0 

140.10.8 
170.3.4 

1.13.6 
0.14.11 
0.10.0 
1.7.0 
0.18.0 
0.12.6 
0.10.0 
3.11.? 
2.16.9 
10.5.0 
8.10.0 
0.16.3 
0.16.3 
5.14.3 
4.0.9 
2.17.3 
0.3.0 
0.16.3 
0.16.6 
0.15.0 
0.12.6 
3.9.0 
2.2.7 
4.7.1 
0.12.0 
2.12.4 
0.11.6 
0.15.0 
4.13.0 
0.12.6 
0.2.6 
1.4.10 
2.10.0 
1.9.1 
0.7.3 
7.0.0 
1.4.0 
5.0.0 
1.0.0 
4.0.0 
11.0.19 
1.5.0 
6.0.0 
5.0.0 
2.15.0 
20.0.0 
19.0.0 
23.15.8 
 

170.3.4 
42.15.8 


24 July 1782178

Rockbridge County, Virginia Marriage Bonds
Know all men by these Presents that we Solomon McCampbell & George Tedford are held and firmly bound to the Commonwealth of Virginia in the sum of fifty pounds Curt Money to which payment well & truly to be made we bind ourselves our heirs Exects and Admrs Jointly & Severally firmly by these Presents Witness our hands & seals this 24th Day of july 1782. 
Whereas there is a Marriage Suddenly intended to be Solemised between the said Solomn McCampbell and Nancy Berry The condition of this Obligation is Such that there is no Lawful ___ to Obstruct the same then this Obligation shall be Void or else Remain in full force 
Solomon McCampbell 
Geo. Tedford 
Teste 
Andw Reid Clk. 
This is to testify that I William Berry have given my Consent for my Daughter Nancy to Be married to Solomon McCampbell. 
James Berry 
William Berry
James _____ 

1783159

Rockbridge County, Virginia Personal Property Tax List for 1783
Wm. Berry
2 free white males > 21 
2 slaves > 16 
0 slaves < 16 
8 horses 
26 cattle 
Slaves: Ralph, Ann

10 Nov. 1783655

Rockbridge County, Virginia Order Book 1, page 509, 510
Andrew Moore (Plaintiff) Against William Berry and William McKeeney (Defendants)
In Case
William McKee Jun Came into Court and Undertook for the Defendant McKeeney
McKeeny and Solomon McCampbell came into Court and Undertook for the defendant Berry, that in Case they should be Condemned in this action they should pay the Costs and Condemnation of the Court or Render their Bodies to prison in Execution for the Same, or that they the said William McKee and Solomon McCampbell for the said Defendants respectively will pay the Costs and Condemnation for them.

3 Mar. 1785655

Rockbridge County, Virginia Order Book 2, page 202
Andrew Moore (Pl) against William McKinney & Will Berry (Defs) In Case
This day came The Parties by their attorneys and There from same also a Jury Viz: Robert Shaw, James Deprese David Henderson William Moore Robert Bone Adam Hickman John Millar John Wilson Robert Lyle John McCullook Cristophel Hoilman & Samuel Kirkpatrick who being elected tried & Sworn the truth to speak upon The issue Joined Upon their oath do say that the Defendants did assume in manner and form as the plaintiff against them hath declared, and they do assess the Damages by action Thereof to fourteen Shillings & ten pence Half Penney, Thereon it is considered that the Plaintiff recover against The said Defendant his Damages aforesaid in form aforesaid assessed, and also his Cost about his Suit in his behalf Expended. Andrew Moore Pl against William McKinney and William Berry, Defts On the Motion of the Defendant by his attorney to compensate the plaintiff the jury having returned verdict for the plaintiff for a less sum than five pounds on a Bill Penal, Which is over ruled by the Court.

3 June 1785469

Apprentice Bonds of Augusta County, Virginia 1772 - 1817 
Apprentice: Nancy Dobage 
Master: William Berry
Trade: Housewifery 

4 May 1786655

Rockbridge County, Virginia Order Book 2, page 405
Margin Notes: Costs 234 Test X16/6
David Long (Ptl) Against Soloman McCampbell & Wm Berry (Defts) Int Debt
The same Judgement as above for Plaintiff for 43..6..0 to be discharged by 24..13..4 Specic with lawful Interest thereon from the 15th Day of December 1784 until payment & Costs

1787102

Rockbridge County, Virginia Personal Property Tax, Tax List A, District of John Gay, Esqr., Commissioner
William Berry, Sr
0/2/0/4/15 
0 white males between 16 and 21 
2 blacks > 16 
0 blacks < 16 
4 horses, mares, colts and mules 
21 cattle

20 Sep 178821

Augusta County, Virginia Deed Book No. 26, page 384
Alexander Elliot and Ann Conway, his wife, now of Rockbridge appoint William Anderson attorney to convey to William of Amherst, all lands in County of Lancaster, state aforesaid (Virginia?), to which they are entitled as heirs-at law of James Campbell, late of Lancaster County, deceased, provided Brent shall convey to Anderson plantation on Back Creek whereon Brent formerly lived. 
Teste: John and William King, Wm. Berry

16 Feb. 1791122

Rockbridge County, Virginia Will Book 1, pages 429-430
In the Name of God Amen I William Berry Sr of Rockbridge County and State of Virginia Being weak in body But of perfect Memory thanks be Given to the almighty God for the same and Calling to mind the Mo[rta]lity of my Body an knowing that it is appointed for all men once to Die Mak[e and] Ordain this my last will and testament in the manner and form following 
first I Recommend my Soul into the hands of God that gave it and my body to the [ground] to be Buried in a Christian and desent Manner at the Diseration of my Exec[cutor] and as tutching Such worldly Estate as it hath pleased God to bless me with in th[e] I Give and Dispose of the Same in Manner and form following 
Im promist I Give [and] Bequeath to my son James Berry the one half of this Plantation thu and my s[on] William Berry now lives on to him his heirs & assigns forever and the other half of s[aid] to my son William Berry & his heirs and assigns forever orterwies my son William Berry is to have it at his Choice to pay sd James Berry the just sum of one hundred fifty pounds after my just Debts is paid and retain the whole of sd lands for Ever also my Negrow man Namd Ralph after my Death is to be Valued By sd James and William Berry or Some other fit persons chosen for that Purpose and the price of s[aid] Negrow to be Equally Divided Betwixt the sd James and William Berry or their he[irs] still referring to William Berry his choice like the of the land I also Beq[ueath] to my son John Berrys heirs the Just sum of five Pounds I required that my s[ons] James and William Berry Each is to pay fifty shillings to the heirs of s[on] John Berry now Deceased 
I Bequeath to my Daughter Mary Berry my W[earing] Coat and her Coalt and a Saddle and two cows and two heifers those to [have] her Choice with her Bed and furniture and the rest of my houshold furnitu[re] such as puter and pots I allow to be Divided between my two Daughters Mary and Jane Berry 
My Negrow wench named Ann I Leave to my Daughter Mary Berry to be hers and her Assigns forever the rest of Moveble Estate I allow to be Divided Between my two sons James and William Berry Excepting one Mare Named Trim that I allow to Become the property of my Son James Berry at my Decease 
Likewise to my Daughter Jane Berry I Bequeath five shillings sterling in Room of her Birthright and to my Daughter Nancy McCampble I bequeath five shillings sterling in Room of her Burthright 
Likewise my Daughter Mary is to have her Mentainence off the planatation and I Do Constitute and appoint my two Sons James & William Berry Executors of this my last will and testament in Witness whereof I Have Set my hand and Seal this sixteenth Day of February in the Year of our lord one thousand seven hundred & Ninety one. 
Signd Seald Published Pronounced and Delivered by the sd 
William Berry (X his mark) 
William Berry Senr to be his last will and Testament 
in Presents of 
John Berry 
Chs Berry

1 May 1792659

Rockbridge County, Virginia Tax Lists
District A, District of John Eakkin
James Berry
2 White Tithable > 16      William Sr, James (~21)
2 Blacks >16
3 Horses

5 Feb. 1793121,122,127

Rockbridge County, Virginia, Will Book 1, pages 429-430
At a Court held for the County of Rockbridge the fifth day of February 1793 This Writing purporting the last will & Testament of William Berry deceased was presented in Court by James Berry & William Berry Executors herein named and proved by John Berry & Charles Berry subscribing witnesses and Ordered to be Recorded and on the motion of said Executors who made Oath according to Law Certificate is granted them for obtaining Probate thereof in due form they having together with James McCampbell & John Tedford their securities entered into & acknowledged their Bond in the penalty of £1000 Conditioned according to Law 
Teste A. Reid Cl. 
By Virtue of an Order of Court to us directed being first Sworn we have appraised the personal Estate of William Berry Deceased, the Articles are as followeth, viz

 

£ S D

Two Cows

4

two Cows

4 7 6 

two Calves 

16 0 

One brown Heifer 

1 15 

two year old Calves

1 7

One spotted Cow

2 5

Amount Carried forward

14 15

Amount Brought forward

14 15

One Mare & Colt 

18

One Sett plow irons

18

ten pewter plates

15

two pewter dishes & three basons

1

one pair Steelyards

7 6

two pots & one pair hooks

1s 3

One stew oven with hooks

10

One small pot

6

Six chairs

1 4 

two Iron pot racks

12

One Bed and furniture

4 10

One Large Bible

6

Seven other Books

15

four bags

1

Rye & wheat in the Sheaf

9 6

Manerings & wedges 

One small trunk & box 

7

One little chest 

6

two Smoothing irons

6

One pewter Quart & half pint 

6

two Coats

1 14

One logchain

9

two pair Drawing Chains

16

two mattocks

14

one tab

4

one churn

4 6

One check reel

3

 

61 4 shillings 0 pence

13th March 1793 
James Buchanan 
Robert McChesney 
James Tedford

2 Apr. 1793121,122,127

Rockbridge County, Virginia, Will Book 1, pages 431-433
At a Court held for Rockbridge County the Second day of April 1793 This Inventory & appraisment of the Estate of Wm Berry deceased was this Day returned & ordered to be Recorded Teste A. Reid Cl

04 Feb. 1794183

Rockbridge County, Virginia Deed Book C, p. 11
Consideration of £630, James Berry and William Berry of Rockbridge County, VA to Alexander Porter of same. James Berry and William Berry, and Nancy, sd William's wife acknowledge have bargained and sold a certain tract of land 427 acres in Rockbridge County being the land bequeathed to sd James and William by the Last Will and Testament of William Berry deceased. 
Beginning at three elms corner to James Tedford. South 73 degrees west 65 poles to a large white oak, south 82 degrees east 136 poles to a chestnut, north 50 degrees east 74 poles to a white oak, north 40 degrees west 20 poles to a black oak, north 50 degrees east 63 poles to a black & Spanish oak, south 39 degrees east 105 poles to a large white oak on a hill, south 50 degrees west 78 poles to a white oak and stony hill, north 43 and a half degrees west 117 poles to a white oak, south 49 degrees west 151 poles hickory and white oak saplings, north 41 degrees west 27 poles to a hickory by a branch, south 49 degrees west 50 poles to the beginning. 
Land is now in possession of Alexander Porter with all appurtenances and advantages. To have and to hold to Alexander Porter his heirs and assigns forever. James Berry, William Berry and Nancy Berry to warrant and forever defend. 
James Berry 
William Berry 
Nancy Berry 
Signed and sealed in the presence of 
Wm McKee 
John Houston 
Jno Wilson 
James Berry, William Berry and Nancy Berry acknowledged. Ordered to be recorded. Nancy Berry privily examined and voluntarily relinquished her dower in the land. 
Teste. A. Reid Clk.

 

Analysis of the Timeline

 

    William Berry can be traced through Augusta County court records for a 48-year period from the spring of 1746 to the winter of 1794. He passed away sometime between the winter of 1791 and the winter of 1793, so the entries after that date are related to proving his will and his children selling off his property. William's first appearance in Augusta County records occurred when he purchased 145 acres in the Borden tract on Moffet Creek adjacent to Elizabeth Hunter's land. This property can be located on Figure 8/Table II, in the northern portion of the Borden tract on Moffet Creek adjacent to Elizabeth Hunter. William Berry's property was processioned in 1748 for determining taxes due to the Church of England, and the 1748 processioning district of Francis McCown and John Montgomery was described as extending from Andrew Baxter's to John Hays' land.21 The southern extent of this processioning district is shown in Figure 17, which also depicts the identified landowners from this processioning district, including William Berry.


    In the late fall of 1752, William Berry purchased additional land from Borden, which can be located on Figure 8/Table II, adjacent to his first purchase. Up to this point, his traceable land acquisitions amounted to 275 acres, costing him just over 15 shillings. The following spring William and Jane sold 65 acres to William's first cousin, Thomas Berry. Some of the property from that sale had been part of their original 1746 Borden purchase. This land, shown in Figure 36, bordered Moffet Creek and David Hay's land. A reference to Figure 8/Table II, however, shows that William Berry's original 145 acres was separated from David Hay's land by 124 acres owned by Elizabeth Hunter. In order for William Berry and David Hays to have adjacent properties, one of them had to have purchased Elizabeth Hunter's land. Unfortunately, no record for this land transfer has been found, to date, in Augusta County records. Based on land sale records, however, it appears either that David Hays must have ended up with the land. After this sale, the property holdings of William Berry consisted of 210 acres. The court records also suggest that neither William nor Jane were able to write, since they made their marks on several legal documents instead of signing their names. 


    Two items in the timeline relating to the land sale need additional explanation. As noted previously (section A of this report), the paired legal documents comprising the land sale represent the lease and release process, which was commonly practiced in colonial Virginia for land exchanges.218,219 First the property is leased to the buyer, then the lease obligation is eliminated with an exchange of money, representing the sale price of the land.220 Another old legal formality involved privately questioning the wife of the seller to see if she agreed with the sale. Under English law, although the husband actually owned the land, his wife could inherit her share (amounting to 1/3) of her husband's land upon his death. This claim on her husband's land was referred to as her dower rights or dowry. In the American colonies, it was common for the woman to give up this claim in order to leave the property free and clear of any legal obligations, but it was the mission of the court to question the wife apart from the husband to ascertain whether or not she actually agreed with the sale, or was being bullied by her husband.219,220


    As has been noted earlier in the report, the Scotch-Irish were predominantly Presbyterian in religion, dating to their conversion to Protestantism back in the old country. In the American colonies, however, during the early part of the 18th century, the Scotch-Irish Presbyterian community became split into two groups, the "Old Side" and the "New Side". Adherents of the "Old Side" believed that people were predestined for a place in either heaven or hell, so it was pointless to recruit new church members. During the mid 1700's, a religious movement, referred to as the "Great Awakening", swept through Europe and the American colonies. The "New Siders" represented this point of view, which promoted the belief that individuals were the masters of their own destinies, and, thus, through their good behavior, they could reform and make a place for themselves in heaven. Consequently, it was vital to recruit new church members, since it was the duty of believers to assist others in achieving the goal of reaching heaven. The movement soon took on political tones, becoming extremely anti-establishment in tenor and, eventually favoring the very democratic ideal of popular sovereignty versus the divine right of (mostly English) monarchs. The Great Awakening grew just as the Scotch-Irish immigration was peaking in the American colonies, so it is not too surprising that most Scotch-Irish "New Siders or New Lights" in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia split from the "Old Siders" while they were living in Pennsylvania. In fact, the settlers in the Borden Grant, which eventually became Rockbridge County, were predominantly "New Siders", whereas those that had settled earlier in the Beverley Grant were mostly "Old Siders". 


    William Berry, along with his brother Charles and his cousin Thomas, were members of the New Providence Presbyterian meetinghouse, a "New Side" group, in 1753 when they all signed a petition requesting the services of a minister. The bulk of the men that signed the petition (73 out of 132) were Borden Grant landowners, and, thus lived reasonably close to the New Providence Meeting House. In fact, this meeting house was just down the road from the homesteads of all of these Berrys (see Figures 10 and 39). There were also 28 men who were probably sons or cousins of original Borden landowners, since they have the same surnames. In addition there was a small number (11) that were Beverley Grant landowners, although seven of these names can also be found as Borden landowners. Clearly, this group of men lived either in or very near the Borden Grant, and attended either the New Providence or Timber Ridge meetinghouses, both, of which, were located within the Borden Grant.175,369,434,435


    In the spring of 1755, William Berry was mentioned as being an adjacent landowner in the sale of James Trimble's property. As shown on Figure 8/Table II, the 402 acres purchased by Joseph Kennedy from James Trimble lay next to William Berry's 1752 Borden land purchase. Other properties contiguous to the Trimble land were those of Alexander Logan and James Fulton, who were probably sons of original Borden purchasers, John Logan and John Fulton. Two years later, William Berry served on an inquest panel, investigating the accidental death of John McCutcheon, who owned land nearby, just across the Beverley/Borden boundary (Figure 3/Table I). Of the other panel members, six were local landowners in either the Beverley or Borden Grants, while an additional six had surnames of local land owners, and were probably sons of original Beverley/Borden purchasers (See Figure 3/Table I and Figure 8/Table II).


    In the late spring of 1764, William and Jane Berry sold their remaining 210 acres of Borden land on Moffet Creek to John Trotter, and William's cousin, George Berry, served as a testator in the exchange. About five months later, William purchased from his father, the elder John Berry, 427 acres on Cedar Grove Creek that had been originally purchased from Borden by James Glasgow (see Figure 38). This property, as well as the adjacent landowner, Alexander Miller, can be found on Figure 8/Table II. It was probably here that William and Jane lived for the rest of their lives, since, in his will, William bequeathed this land to his sons William and James Berry. In February of 1765, William Berry's Cedar Grove Creek land fell into the processioning district of Andrew Hall and James Buchanan, who were charged with determining acreages for landowners between the North River (the present day Maury River) northward to the boundary of the Beverley Grant, and between the Great Wagon Road and North Mountain.21  Figure 15 provides a bird's eye view of this processioning district. Of the 31 men identified on this list, over half (18) can be identified as Borden landowners. Six men have the same surname as original landowners and are, most likely, sons of original Borden purchasers. Figure 37 depicts the known locations of these properties, and William Berry's Cedar Creek Grove property can be seen to be well within the boundaries of this processioning district.


    Sometime in 1770, Alexander Telford purchased some Borden land adjacent to William Berry's property. Since this man had been listed in the 1765 processioning district, it appears that he had been living on the property for some time before he actually received the title. In mid August, William Berry served as a testamentary in what appears to be some kind of exchange of goods and services between Margaret Smith and Samuel McCutcheon, although the record doesn't provide much information on the nature of the exchange. Since Samuel McCutcheon was a neighbor of William Berry when he (William Berry) lived on Moffet Creek, it seems likely that William Berry's involvement in this deal was related to the fact that he knew the parties involved. In the fall of 1770, William Berry's father, the elder John Berry, wrote his will, mentioning William Berry. The old man passed away in late 1770 or early 1771, and by August, the executors of the estate noted that William Berry was due compensation for funeral expenses.


    In 1770 Botetourt County was formed from a portion of Augusta County (Figure 21) with the Augusta/Botetourt boundary in this area being the Maury River. William Berry's land remained in Augusta County at this time, but in 1778, Rockbridge County was formed a portion of Augusta County, and the area north of the Maury River, which included William's land, became included in the new county.243 Upon its formation Rockbridge County made a list of all taxable citizens, which, presumably, was followed by a levy. At this time, Virginia counties began taxing males when they reached the age of 16, whereas at the state level, the taxable age for males was 21.102 Since the 1778 tax appears to be a county tax, the data from the 1778 Botetourt County tax most likely represents males over the age of 16. William Berry was recorded as having two tithable males in the family at this time, which means one of the sons living at home was over 16. This places a birth date for that son of at least 1762 and possibly earlier. Since their oldest son, John Berry, was already married and out of the house by this time, this must represent either William or James. In the late summer of 1779, Alexander Tedford/Teford/Telford purchased 40 acres of Borden land adjacent to William Berry's property. This property can be located on Figure 8/Table II, adjacent to the property originally purchased from Borden by James Glasgow. From Figure 8/Table II, Andrew and William Buchanan can be seen to be land owners adjacent to Tedford's land, although James Buchanan is noted in the entry as the adjacent landowner. However, James Buchanan was noted in 1765 as being a son of William, so he must have inherited William Buchanan's land by 1770.21


    In the spring of 1781, the estate of William Berry's father, the elder John Berry, was finally settled, and the name William Berry was noted on three separate occasions as receiving monetary distributions. Either there were multiple William Berrys (which is not inconceivable with this family), two, of whom, most likely being grandsons of the elder John Berry, or one William Berry received three cash awards. The former alternative seems more likely. A little over a year later, in the summer of 1782, William Berry gave his consent for the marriage of his daughter, Nancy Berry, which probably means she was under the age of 21. Her birthdate thus calculates to sometime after 1761. One of the Tedford family members, who was most likely a neighbor and close friend, assisted in supplying the marriage bond, and the James Berry that signed the consent form with William Berry was probably a brother of the bride. The 1783 tax listing for Rockbridge County identified all taxable males over the age of 21, and, in William Berry's family, there are two such males. Since one is clearly William Berry, the other must be one of the sons remaining at home. This tax listing noted that William owned two slaves, a male and a female named Ralph and Ann, both of whom were over the age of 16. He also owned some livestock. From 1785 through 1786, William Berry was involved in a series of lawsuits, both of which he appears to have lost. In 1787, another tax levy showed that there were no other males in the house between 16 and 21. Since William Berry, Jr. appeared in the tax listings in his own household that year, it is quite probable that the male over the age of 21 in William Berry Sr.'s 1783 household was William, Jr. In 1787 William Sr. owned some livestock, and still was a slave owner. A look at the statistics from this tax listing shows that 21% of the 1,817 taxable citizens in this county were slave owners. William Berry also owned some livestock, and a look at the county numbers testifies to the agrarian nature of the population. There were 7,887 horses and 15,890 cattle in Rockbridge County in 1787. In the fall of 1788 William Berry served as a testamentary in a land sale.


    Since orphanages did not exist during the late 18th century in Virginia, responsibility for the welfare of the les fortunate members of society, such as illegitimate children, orphans and neglected children, was a church function governed by churchwardens of the parish vestries. In 1780, the vestries were eliminated, and the government took over these duties with the positions of Overseers of the Poor. In this welfare process, both before and after 1780, the underage children were turned over to county citizens who were willing to take on the responsibility of caring for and training them. The churchwarden, and later, the Overseers of the Poor, executed a bond or an indenture with the master, which outlined the conditions of apprenticeship. In 1785 William Berry served as the master in a master/apprentice indenture agreement, where he undertook the responsibility of instructing a young woman, Nancy Dobage in the arts of being a housewife. George Berry, William's cousin, took in what appears to be the sister of William Berry's apprentice in the same month, and Solomon McCampbell, either the father or the husband of William Berry's daughter, Nancy Berry, assumed responsibility for Cornelius Dobage. Apparently, the three Dobage children were orphaned, and several Berry family families took in the kids.469 


    William Berry, Sr. wrote his will on 16 February 1791, naming his children William, James, Mary, Jane and Nancy, as well as the two slaves who were mentioned by name in the 1783 tax listing, Ralph and Ann. William's wife, Jane (MaGill) Berry, was conspicuously absent from the will, which may suggest that she had already passed away. A determination was to be made on the monetary value of Ralph, the male slave, who was then to be sold and the proceeds of the sale split between the two surviving brother, William and James. Ann, the female slave, was bequeathed to William's daughter, Mary. Except for a coat, a horse, a saddle, four cows and a bed and furniture, which went to Mary Berry, both Mary and her sister Jane Berry were to share the rest of the household furniture. William's son John was noted as having already passed away by this time, and allowances were made for his heirs. The two witnesses to the will were Charles and John Berry, who were, most likely, William Sr.'s brother and nephew (respectively), who lived nearby on the Borden tract (Figure 8/Table II). 


    On 5 February 1793, the will was presented in court, which brackets William Berry's death as occurring sometime between this date and when the will was written two years earlier. A month later James Buchanan, Robert McChesney and James Tedford inventoried his estate, and both Buchanan and Tedford were neighbors (Figure 8/Table II).21 The inventory revealed livestock, farm equipment, household items and harvested crops. There were 10 cattle, two horses, and some harvested rye and wheat, which is a limited collection of livestock and crops when compared to other appraisals. This could indicate, however, that William Sr.'s sons, William and James, were actually running the place at this time, and, thus, could well have owned the bulk of the crops and much of the livestock. William had mentioned in his will that he was weak in body, so if he was actually born in 1720, as assumed in this report, he was in his early 70's when he wrote his will. He probably needed his sons to keep the farm going as he became weaker with age. The appraisal also revealed a set of iron plows, wedges, various chains and smoothing irons, all of which indicate that this family was involved in farming and handling animals. A tab, churn and check reel show that they churned butter from the milk of their cows and spun yarn, probably from sheep wool. Of particular interest are the bible and several other books. It is quite likely that the family history was recorded in that bible, and if that bible was still available today, it is possible that many Berry mysteries would be explained. The last group of items from the appraisal were the household items, which included many pewter plates, dishes and containers, pots with racks and hooks and household furniture. These were the items that were to be divided among William, Sr.'s children as noted in his will.


    The last entry for William Berry is related to the sale of the property his sons had inherited from him. The 427 acre tract of Borden land that had been purchased from the original Borden owner in 1762 by the elder John Berry finally left Berry family ownership in 1794. Within a year of the final appraisal, William and James Berry had sold all of the land they had inherited from their father, and, presumably, moved away from the Augusta County area.

 

In-laws of James & William Berry

William MaGill and Margaret Gass

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Last Revised: 04/02/2006