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Forgey Family History Page

Last Updated 23 August 2009


According to a family tradition passed down in the James A. FORGEY family two brothers came from Ireland and settled in Virginia ( I interpret this as referring to Alexander FORGEY and Andrew FORGEY).

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Table of Contents

Ulster Ireland FORGEYS:

Nathaniel FORGY was part of the Plantation of Ards in Co. Down. He was brought to Ireland by landowner Hugh Montgomery in 1603. Later generations of this family sometimes spelled their name FORGEY. Robert FORGEY signed the Ulster Convenant on 28 September 1912 in Co. Down, Ireland. See Forgey, Forgy and Forgie tombstones Co. Down, Ireland.

According to a report written by the Registrar General of Ireland, in March of 1901, the surname FORGEY is a variant of the surname FERGUSON. According to the same report the spelling FORGEY is found in the Portrush District of Co. Antrim, and the Warrenpoint District of Co. Down, Ireland.

The following FORGEYS were listed on the Hearth money tax list of Co Antrim, Ireland in the year 1669:

William FORGY: Townland of Artnagullian, Connor Parish

Hugh FARGIE: Townland Lisnevanagh, Shilvodan Grange Parish

Andrew FARGY: Townland Croaghbeg, Ballintoy Parish

James FARGY: Townland Croaghbeg, Ballintoy Parish

John FORGY: Townland Cape Castle, Ramoan Parish

Robert FERGY: Townland Novally, Ramoan Parish

(variations in spelling are due to regional differences in pronunciaton)

1766 Religious Census Ulster:

Robert FORESY (spelled FORGY in later records) Parish Aghalow & Carnteel, Co Tyrone

Adam FORGIE: Townland Arbox, Parish Ballentoy, Co Antrim

John FORGIE: Townland Artimacormick, Parish Ballentoy, Co Antrim

Andrew FORGY: Creggan Parish, Co Armagh

James FORGY: Creggan Parish, Co Armagh

All families listed as Protestants

Corrections to FORGEY Lineage:

According to the SAWYERS-HARRIS Family History Book, and Lucille Wallace's FORGEY Family History Book, Alexander, James, Hugh, and Andrew FORGEY were the sons of James FORGEY who immigrated from Ireland to America in 1779 ( the author of the Sawyers- Harris family history never named a specific person as being Andrew FORGEY). Alexander FORGEY was said to have been born at sea. James FORGEY was said to have purchased 500 acres of land on Flat Creek, in Knox County, Tennessee. A land grant, for a James FORGEY, was issued in 1792; he purchased the warrant for this land grant from Richard Freer on 10 July 1788. I have tried to verify all of this. So far this info doesn't look very credible. It would have been very unlikely that a family would have emigrated to America, in 1779, during the Revolutionary War. According to the 1850 Census for Indiana, Alexander G. FORGEY was born in Virginia, not at sea. I have looked at several deeds quoted in Lucille Wallace's FORGEY Family History Book. Through careful reading I have determined that the 500 acres on Flat Creek in Knox County, Tennessee were most likely owned by James FORGEY of Hawkins County, Tennessee. Not the same James FORGEY referred to above. Instead, he was the son of Andrew FORGEY and Margaret REYNOLDS (they were originally from Ireland). Their son James owned many tracts of land in Tennessee, and elsewhere. He and his brother Andrew FORGEY Jr. were also slave owners.

The deeds filed by James FORGEY when he sold his Flat Creek land to Andrew and Alexander FORGEY state that he was a resident of Hawkins County, TN at the time of the sale in 1802. James FORGEY never appears on jury lists for Knox County (jury lists begin in 1792). So I don't believe that James lived on his Flat Creek property. Both Andrew and Alexander, however, are said to be residents of Knox County, TN, according to the same deeds.

James FORGEY sold 250 acres, of his original 500, on Flat Creek to Alexander FORGEY on 2 December 1802 (Warranty Deed Book L Volume 1 on pages 4-5, Knox County Archives, Knoxville,Tn) View image. According to Lucille Wallace this is supposed to be a father to son deed. No relationships are mentioned in the deed, and it is a warranty deed, making it unlikely that this is a father to son transaction. On the same day, 2 Dec 1802, James FORGEY sold the remaining 250 acres to Andrew FORGEY. This is not the Andrew FORGEY born in 1794, but someone born much earlier. All the evidence I have seen points to this Andrew, owner of 250 acres on Flat Creek, later settling in Maury County, TN. An Andrew and Elen FORGEY witnessed a deed in Knox County in the year 1808. I believe that this Elen may be Eleanor RANDALL-FORGEY, wife of Andrew FORGEY. Also, Andrew FORGEY was appointed administrator of the estate of Betsy SAWYERS in Maury County, TN. She may have been a member of the SAWYERS family of Knox County, TN. This Andrew may be the brother of Alexander FORGEY born 1779. I believe that both Andrew and Alexander FORGEY might be sons of Alexander FORGEY of Washington County, Virginia.

Hugh FORGEY seemed to own a separate tract of land on Flat Creek.

see list of Forgey Family Deeds Flat Creek, Knox County, TN

I believe the conclusion that Andrew FORGEY, born on 10 Dec 1794, is the son of James FORGEY needs to be re-evaluated. I can find evidence of only one James FORGEY living in Hawkins County, TN. This James is the son of Andrew FORGEY and Margaret REYNOLDS. James FORGEY'S family has been well documented, and he didn't have a son named Andrew. However James had two brothers, Hugh and John, but the names of their children are unknown.

I believe that Andrew FORGEY born 10 Dec 1794 is most likely the son of Hugh FORGEY. According to a letter written by Hugh CRAWFORD (born 13 Nov 1806 Knox County, TN) John FORGEY migrated to middle Tennessee; where he died. John is not listed on the 1809 tax list for Hawkins County, TN. Hugh CRAWFORD, John's nephew, also stated in a letter, written on 4 April 1834, "Uncle John FORGEY'S oldest son Andrew is dead." Hugh CRAWFORD had no information on Hugh FORGEY'S family. {letters transcribed by Kenneth EDMONDSON}

A John FORGEY died in 1793. James FORGEY was appointed administrator of John's estate in Hawkins County, on 10 Sep 1793. James sued Joseph BEARD as administrator of John's estate on 9 Nov 1793 in Knox County, TN (as recorded in Knox County Court Minutes book O).

My FORGEY family

First Generation:

Andrew FORGEY Sr. was born on 4 Feb 1732 in Ireland [said to be from FORGEY Family bible].

Andrew married Margaret REYNOLDS in Ireland.

Children of Andrew FORGEY & Margaret REYNOLDS:

Hugh, James, John, Nancy, Margaret, Andrew, and possibly Sarah [sons as named in Andrew FORGEY'S will]

Andrew died 3 Aug 1809 in Hawkins County, Tennessee [said to be from FORGEY Family bible].

Margaret REYNOLDS was born on 25 Dec 1741 in Creggan Parish, Co. Louth, Ireland [said to be from FORGEY Family Bible].

Margaret died on 1 Jun 1828 in Hawkins County, Tennessee [date from FORGEY Family bible].
Margaret was the daughter of Hugh Reynolds and Mary DUER.

Previous researchers thought that the Hawkins County and Knox County, TN FORGEYS were distantly related. It looks to me like they were one and the same family. I believe this because Margaret REYNOLDS-FORGEY, of Hawkins County, had strong family ties to several families living in, and around, the Flat Creek area of Knox County,TN. Margaret's brother James REYNOLDS lived in the Flat Creek area. Her niece Mary REYNOLDS was married to Jeremiah PATE a neighbor of the FORGEYS living on Flat Creek. In 1806 Andrew, Alexander and Hugh FORGEY were listed in the Militia Company of Captain John REYNOLDS. He was a nephew of Margaret. Margaret's daughter Margaret FORGEY-ROBERTS, born about 1774, married Henry ROBERTS a resident of the Flat Creek area. On 11 Jan 1808 both Henry ROBERTS and Alexander FORGEY appeared in court, and took the oath to become Justices of the Peace for Knox County, TN. Margaret's grand-daughter Rebecca FORGEY-CRAWFORD was buried at the Washington Pike Presbyterian Church cemetery which is located in the Flat Creek area of Knox County; and this church may have been built on FORGEY property.

In 1779 Andrew FORGEY Sr. was convicted of selling liquor without a license and above the rates. The trial took place in Washington County, Virginia.

Andrew FORGEY Sr. may have had a brother named Alexander FORGEY. He lived in Washington County, Virginia. The names of his descendants are unknown. Both Alexander and Andrew, it is believed, originally settled in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania. In 1773 Andrew FORGEY purchased land there, and Alexander FORGEY was a witness to this transaction. Alexander and Andrew appear on tax lists for Peters Township from 1772 to 1774.

Andrew FORGEY eventually settled in the Surgoinsville area of Hawkins County, TN. A creek named Forgey Creek is located there. The Jacob ROLLER family lived in nearby Scott County, Virginia. Andrew owned 400 acres of land according to the 1809 tax list for Hawkins County. He purchased this land in 1782; the deed reads as follows:

"DEED BOOK 1, Page 133 Deed from NORTH CAROLINA to ANDREW FORGES, No. 78 For and in consideration of the sum of fifty shillings for every hundred acres paid into the Treasury by Andrew Forges, we have granted to him a tract of land containing four hundred acres, lying on Possum Creek in Stanley Valle, beginning on Hugh Crafford's corner in the north side of the valley. Given under my hand and seal this 23rd day of October 1782."

Andrew FORGEY Sr. was probably from Creggan,Co Armagh, Ireland. The family of Margaret REYNOLDS has been traced back to nearby Creggan Parish, Co. Louth, Ireland.

Second Generation:

Hugh FORGEY was born about 1762 in Ireland.

He married Catherine FISHER in Tennessee.

It appears that Catherine FISHER's father was Archibald FISHER who lived in Knox County, TN and later settled in Randolph County, IL where he died. Archibald FORGEY may have been named after him. Catherine came to America with her father and siblings from Scotland in 1767. Her family settled in Augusta, VA.

Children of Hugh FORGEY:

Archibald, Andrew, and James A.

The first mention of Hugh FORGEY I have found is in the Knoxville Gazette Volume 1 Number 2. dated 19 Jan 1792.

It reads:

"I gave a bond to Leonard Rice for $250 with a bearing date of November last, and payable on June next. Rice has given three horses that are now proven stolen. I will not pay said bond." Hugh Forgey

Hugh lived on land originally owned by his father Andrew Sr.. Andrew Sr. gave this tract of land to his son John; which he in turn sold to his brother James. According to Andrew Sr.'s 1809 will he wanted his son James to take possession of the tract. Evicting his son Hugh? Hugh did inherit $100 from his father (see Andrew FORGEY Sr.'s will, you will need to scroll down the page ).

Hugh appears on the 1809 tax list for Hawkins County, TN. He is listed as owning no land and 1 horse.

A Hugh FORGEY is listed as a Juror in Knox County, TN in the year 1793, and serves as a Juror nearly every year until this Hugh sold his 250 acres on Flat Creek in 1806. He may be the same Hugh referred to above.

According to Hugh CRAWFORD his uncle Hugh FORGEY lived just above his family in Knox County, TN.

In April of 1795 a Hugh FORGEY sued Joseph BEARD in Knox County, TN. Hugh had previously testified in the James FORGEY adm. of John FORGEY vs. Joseph BEARD case, which took place in 1794 in Knox County. Joseph accused Hugh of perjury in that case, stating that he uttered a "damned eternal lie." Hugh sued Joseph for slander. He asked for $1000 in damages, but only received $5.00. James FORGEY testified for Hugh. The Sheriff had difficulty finding James FORGEY. He failed in his first attempt to contact James. He said he could not find him under his name or "alias"?

In 1800 Hugh FORGEY testified about a land grant property line dispute, in Knox County, TN. Hugh testified that he was a chain bearer for Thomas HUTCHINGS when he surveyed land grants in the winter of 1786.

A Hugh FORGEY was bondsman for Wm. SNODGRASS and Rachel WHITE when they married on 2 Mar 1797 in Knox County, TN. In 1799 Hugh witnessed a William SNODGRASS deed.

It looks like Hugh FORGEY migrated to Jackson County, TN when he sold his property in 1806. His signature appears on a petition signed in that county in 1806, and his name also appears on a deed dated 1807. I believe he was back in Hawkins County, TN by 1809.

Third Generation:

Andrew FORGEY was born on 10 Dec 1794 in Knox County, Tennessee [date as recorded on tombstone see tombstone at findagrave and in a Forgey Family bible, place as recorded in obituary].

Married Anna ROLLER (daughter of Jacob ROLLER and Eva ZIRKLE) on 15 Oct 1816 probably in Scott County, Virginia [date as recorded in a FORGEY family bible].

Children of Andrew FORGEY & Anna ROLLER:

Hugh, John, Eleanor, Amos, James, Elizabeth Ann, Nancy, Elias, Andrew, Jacob, and George.[names as recorded in a FORGEY Family bible]

Most of what we know about the origins, and movements of Andrew and Anna FORGEY comes from a biography for their son Elias in A History of Asotin County, Washington, written in 1892, and the Oregon donation land grant for John FORGEY.

Andrew FORGEY is listed on the 1820 Census for Scott County, Virginia.

Archibald FORGEY, born about 1791, in Tennessee; and James FORGEY, born about 1803, in Tennessee, also lived in Scott County, Virginia at approximately the same time as Andrew. Archibald FORGEY was a Justice of the Peace for Scott County, and overseer of the Roler road. He married Eleanor ROLLER (sister of Anna ROLLER-FORGEY). On the 2nd Apr 1811 Archibald purchased 100 acres of land in Lee County, VA from David CALDWELL, of Hawkins County, TN, for the sum of $390. James FORGEY and family, of Scott County, later settled in Indiana. This family first settled in Jackson County, IN. In 1837 James FORGEY was accused of slander by Jesse HUBBARD [as recorded in Jackson County, IN court orders]. He, and his family, also lived in Jennings and Bartholomew counties, which are neighboring counties of Jackson County, Indiana ( see family group record). Andrew, Archibald, and James may be brothers.

Sometime between 1820 and 1830 the Andrew FORGEY family moved to Jackson County, Indiana.

According to the 1830 Census, for Jackson County, IN, a couple of members of the WEDDLE family were neighbors of Andrew FORGEY. Amos WEDDLE was born about 1796 in Hawkins County, TN. His wife was Nancy CALDWELL. The CALDWELL family was closely associated with the Andrew FORGEY Sr. family. Benoni CALDWELL is mentioned in Andrew's 1809 will. James FORGEY Sr. was married to Margaret CALDWELL. Robert WEDDLE, Amos WEDDLE'S brother, was married to a Mary "Polly" FORGEY, born about 1800. Also, James FORGEY Sr. witnessed the marriage of Elias WEDDLE to Nancy WALLEN, in 1793, in Hawkins County, TN.

Andrew FORGEY made the following land purchases from the U.S. Government:

8 Jun 1833 Forty acres township 5 Range 2 Section 25 Jackson County, Indiana.

15 Aug 1838 Eighty acres township 5 Range 2 Sections 24 and 25 Jackson County, Indiana

On 21 Nov 1840 Andrew and his wife Anna sold their Jackson County, IN land to Daniel PECK. According to this deed they were residing in Lawrence County, IN in 1840. Andrew FORGEY was also listed on the 1840 Census for Lawrence County, IN.

Andrew ran a grist mill on Guthrie Creek, in Lawrence County, Indiana.

After the death of Andrew's wife Anna, on 24 March 1841, he and most of his family moved to Muscatine County, Iowa (in 1845 according to Andrew's obituary)[date of death for Anna as recorded in a FORGEY Family bible]. In 1846 Andrew relocated to Scott County, Iowa. In 1847 he appears on a Census for Scott County, Iowa. He also appears on an 1856 Census for Scott County, Iowa.

Andrew FORGEY married Elizabeth MAXWELL in Henderson County, Il, on 23 May 1850 [from Illinois state marriage records].

Children of Andrew FORGEY & Elizabeth MAXWELL:

Adaline, Clark , Elisha, Lewis [children as recorded in US Census]

Andrew FORGEY is listed on the US Federal Census for Rozetta township Henderson County, Illinois from 1850 to 1870. It's possible that Andrew had residences in both Scott County, Iowa and Henderson County, Il. He married a woman from Henderson County, and she may have owned property there.

Andrew FORGEY appears twice on the 1870 US Census. On June 13, 1870 he is listed as living with his wife, Elizabeth, and children, in Henderson County, Illinois. On September 7, 1870 he is listed in the household of his daughter Elizabeth Friday in Scott County, Iowa.

Andrew FORGEY died on 8 Apr 1879 date as recorded on tombstone and in a FORGEY Family bible. Andrew is buried near Davenport, Iowa, in the Friday Family Cemetery.

Andrew FORGEY’S obituary was published in the Davenport Democrat on 8 Apr 1879 on page 1 and reads as follows:

"Mr. Andrew Forgey, an early settler of this county, died at the residence to his son-in-law, Mr. John M. Friday, in Rockingham township, at 10 o’clock this forenoon, from an apoplectic stroke. The deceased was born in Knox County, Tennessee, Dec. 10, 1794, and was, therefore , at the time of his death , in his 86th year- a venerable old age. He settled in Muscatine county in the year 1845, and came to Scott county in 1846, where he remained until the time of his death. He was a farmer, which pursuit he followed steadily and industriously all his days. He was a staunch, unflinching Democrat, and took a strong interest in politics. He was a kind neighbor, an honest citizen, and will be long remembered as a worthy man. The funeral will take place at two to morrow afternoon at the family burying ground of John M. Friday."

Fourth Generation:

Hugh FORGEY, census records give several possible places of birth for him,i.e., Indiana, Virginia, and Tennessee. He was most likely born in Scott County, VA. He was born on 28 Mar 1817 [date as recorded in a FORGEY Family bible]. Hugh FORGEY Picture

His first wife was Delila HENDERSON.

Children of Hugh FORGEY & Delila HENDERSON:

Eupha, Nancy (names as recorded in Hugh FORGEY'S will)

His second wife was Elizabeth WRAY (she was the daughter of Anderson WRAY and Sarah CAMPBELL).

Hugh and Elizabeth were married on 7 Feb 1851, in Jackson County, Indiana. They were married by William S. Carter, a Methodist Episcopal Minister.

Children of Hugh FORGEY & Elizabeth WRAY:

Leander, Sarah, William Wray

Hugh FORGEY remained in Jackson County, not making the move to Iowa with his family.

Hugh FORGEY made the following land purchases from the U.S. Government:

15 Aug 1838 Forty acres township 5 range 2 Section 25 Jackson County, Indiana.

10 May 1848 Forty acres township 5 range 2 Section 24 Jackson County, Indiana

Hugh FORGEY operated a tanning business in partnership with Daniel B. WRIGHT.

Hugh died on 28 Nov 1882 in Silones Springs, Arkansas [date and place as recorded in a FORGEY Family bible].

Hugh FORGEY'S obituary was published in the Brownstown Banner 2 Dec 1882 and reads as follows:

"Hugh A. Forgey, an aged and respected citizen of our neighborhood, who went to Arkansas a few weeks ago for his health, died in that State last Wednesday. His remains were brought home and on Sunday interred in the Freetown burying ground. The family have the profound sympathy of a large circle of friends in their sad bereavement."

Hugh and wife Elizabeth are buried in Freetown Cemetery.

Fifth Generation:

William Wray FORGEY was born in Jackson County, Indiana on 18 May 1862.

He married Isis Minerva BROWNING on 22 Jun 1890, in Jackson County, Indiana. She was the daughter of Richard Washington BROWNING and Mary Ann CALLAHAN.

Children of William Wray FORGEY & Isis BROWNING:

Inez, Cecil, Edna, Charles, Claude and Mona Marie

William Wray FORGEY died on 20 Dec 1933, in Jackson County, Indiana. He is buried in Freetown Cemetery along with Isis.

More information on FORGEY allied families

Here are some of my favorite websites:

  • Jackson County, Indiana Genealogy Site .
  • The Zirkle Connection .
  • Little Zion Luthern Church 225th Anniversary Service .
  • Zirkle German Village Photo Album .
  • Anderson Wray's Land Troubles .
  • Reynolds Family Site

  • This page belongs to Annette Kapple.