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Thomas Wilcher

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Born: ABT 1740

Died: 8 Aug 1816
Warren Co., TN
Buried: 16 Aug 1816
Liberty Cemetery, Warren Co., TN



Ann Walton
f: William Walton
m: Susannah Cobb


Sarah Wilcher
  +James David Hennessee
        Thomas Hennessee
        Archibald Wilcher Hennessee
        Patrick Samuel Hennessee
        Alsey J. Hennessee
        Alfred Hennessee
        Alexander Hennessee
        Henry Hennessee
Nancy Wilcher
  + Chambers
        Henry Chambers
        Rachel Chambers
  +George Damron Staton
        John Staton
        George D. Staton Jr.
        Nancy Staton
        Polly Staton
        Carey Ann Staton
        Wilbur Staton
        Thomas W. Staton
Elizabeth Wilcher
  +John Harper
Lucy Wilcher
  +Joseph England
        Alexander W. England
        Nancy England
        Martha England
  +Richard Albert Forrest
Thomas Wilcher
  +Pauline C. Gordon
        Clarissa Wilcher
        Elizabeth Wilcher
        Nancy Ann Wilcher
        William Walton Wilcher
        Amanda Wilcher
        Archibald Price Wilcher
        Christian Wilcher
        George Walton Wilcher
        Thomas Wilcher
Winifred Wilcher
  +William Brassell
        Matilda Brassell
Kitriece Wilcher
  +Thomas Vaughn
        Mary Vaughn
        Thomas Vaughn Jr.
        Aaron Vaughn
        Sterling Vaughn
        Alberto Vaughn
Christian Wilcher
  + North
Archibald P. Wilcher

Photo Archive

Thomas  Wilcher
Clara and Wilbur Park

General Sources

  1. Moses Park (1738-1828) His Descendants and Related Families Vaughan and Wilcher
    Page 254, ref Warren Co., TN Deed Vol 1, Book D pp. 412-415
    Ref. Deed Vol 1, Book I, P. 16
    Thomas Wilcher and Anne lived in Amherst County, VA before 1789 - Ref Amherst Co., VA Deed Book C, pp. 76, 104, 216; Book E, p 120; Court Oders
    Thomas and Anne lived in Burk Co., NC after 1789 before moving to White Co., TN, Ref: Warren Co., TN Deed Vol 1, Book C. pp 126-127
    Page 261: Executors sold Thomas Wilcher's deceased land in Burke County NC on a deed dated Nov. 25, 1818, the land was granted to Thomas Wilcher on June 7, 1799. Ref: Warren County Deed Vol I Bk C, pp. 126-127
  2. Thomas Jefferson Barnes Papers
    TSLA Mf #654, Reel #3 - Wilcher
  3. David A. Hennessee
      Email communication on July 30, 2007, file WK.RTF

    • Thomas Wilcher, Sr. #1214 born circa 1745, Caroline Co.,VA, married in (VA), Nancy Anna "Ann" Walton #1215, born circa 1748, (Goochland Co.)VA, died (Liberty Cemetery,Warren Co.,TN). Thomas died 8 Aug 1816, Warren Co.,TN, buried: Liberty Cemetery,Warren Co.,TN, 16 Aug 1816, Warren Co.,TN - Will recorded. Thomas is mentioned in many Burke County,NC documents.
    • Last Will & Testament of Thomas Wilcher, Sr.:

          The will of Thomas Wilcher, Sr. to Annie Wilcher, et al was a Deed of Gift and is recorded in Warren County Deed Book D, pages 412-414.. It reads as follows:

      "In the name of God, Amen. I, Thomas Wilcher of the County of Warren and the State of Tennessee, this 8th day of August A.D. 1816, being weak of body but of perfect mind and memory and calling to mind the mortality of my body and knowing that it is appointed unto all men to die, do make and ordain this to be my last Will and Testament. Principally and first of all, I recommend my soul into the hands of Almighty God who gave it, and my body to the dust to be interred in a decent and Christian-like manner. At the discretion of my executors hereinafter named and as touching such worldly estate wherewith it has pleased God to bless me with in this life I give, devise and dispose of in the following manner. Viz,--I will and desire that all my just debts and funeral expenses be paid out of my estate.

      1st Imprimis. I give and bequeath to my beloved wife Anne and son Archibald, all the tract of land whereon I now live lying north of John Harper old line to join a line of Thomas Wilcher, Junr said tract to run with the main road until it strikes the aforesaid line of Thomas Wilcher, Junr. Further I give to my wife and son aforesaid four negroes, viz. Isaac, Rella, Jo and Lawson with the increase of said slave Rella forever and should one or more of the aforesaid Negroes die before my decease in that case I will and allow the number to be kept up of others of my Negroes of my son's own choice. Also to my said wife and son I leave all my household furniture that I possess at my decease together with all stock of every description with all farming utentials and every necessary thing or things suitable for a farm and necessary to make life comfortable and living convenient to my wife during her natural life and to my son Archibald his heirs forever, and I do put my son in possession of the above with the injunction laid of my son Archibald that he shall during his mother's natural life support, take care, and nourish her as comfortable in this world as will be in his power.

      2 Item. I give to my son Thomas Wilcher the tract of land where on he now lives containing 250 acres agreeable to the survey, be the same more or less to him and his heirs forever.

      3 Imprimis. I give and bequeath to my daughter Sally Hennessee a Negro woman named Sucky with her off spring, the tract of land whereon James Hennessee now lives, containing by estimation 223 acres all my right and title of the same to her and her heirs forever.

      4th Item. I give to my daughter Christian a tract of land beginning on my son Thomas' line where it crosses the road south side of said road that is the line between my son Thomas and son Archibald running with the road till it strikes John Harpers line thence with Harpers line to a red oak south side of the ?ting being a corner of Harper's tract, thence northeastwardly to a poplar marked TW, thence with said line east to a corner of another tract, thence south to a corner thence continuing south till it strikes another line of mine being a preference of Edmond McMahons(?) purchased from Anderson and Thomas Wilcher, Sr. (cont'd)

      Doak, thence east to a corner thence south to a corner thence east to a corner then north to a corner on Thomas Vaughans line then west with his line to his corner thence north with his line to Thomas Wilcher, Junr., line to the road to the beginning including all in that boundary except an acre for the use of the church, also a Negro girl named June and her offspring to her and her heirs forever.

      5th Item. I give to my daughter Nancy Staton a Negro girl Peggy and offspring during her natural life and at her death to be sold and the money accruing therefrom to be equally divided among her children begotten of her body, to them and their heirs forever.

      6th Item. I give to my grand daughter Rachel Chambers one hundred dollars when collected out of my estate by my Exrs.

      6th(sic) Item. I give to my daughter Betsey Harper a Negro girl named Pat which are (sic) now in the possession of John Harper and that said girl shall never be sold not put away by no bargain or contract whatsoever from the use and benefit of my aforesaid daughter and her children during my daughter's natural life, and at her death my will is that said girl and her offspring be equally divided between her children forever.

      7th I give to my daughter Lucy England a Negro boy named John, together with $300 that she has already received making her dividend equal with my other children to her and heirs forever.

      8th Item. I give to daughter Ritty the sum of five dollars as she has heretofore received her dividend of my estate.

      9th Item. I give to Polly, Thomas, and Aaron Vaughan my daughter Ritty's children begotten of her body one hundred dollars each and no more, by my Exors. To be given them when they arrive at age or at marriage.

      10th Item. I give to my daughter Winny the sum of $5 at the discretion of my Exors. Hereafter named and empowering them to consider my daughter Winny that if they see her necessity required assistance that they will allow her the use of Negroe girl named Lucy as her need requires and to recall her at their discretion also upon their discretion to allow her to the amount of three hundred dollars occasionally as her necessity demands and should it be that her circumstance should not required to that amount I wish the other part of the $300 to be adapted for the purpose of educating her grandchildren viz Sandy England and Polly Taylor. The property that I bought at William Brasel's sale to be returned to my Exors. And it to be at their discretion if not discretionally used. Two horses, thirteen head of cattle, 15 head of hogs and the house furniture.

      11th Item. And the residue of my estate both real and personal not heretofore bequeathed I wish to be sold and equally divided amon my legatees viz. Sally Hennessee, Nancy Staton, Betsey Harper, Lucy England, Thomas Wilcher, and daughter Christian, Archibald Wilcher to them and them only and heirs forever.

      Thomas Wilcher, Sr. (cont'd)

      12th Item. And I do by these presents appoint my trusty friends Benjamin Wooten, Thomas Wilcher, Jr., and Joseph England the sole executors of this my will and testament and none other ratifying and confirming this to be my last will and testament and revoking and disallowing all other wills heretofore by me made. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal the date first written." Signed Thomas Wilcher (Seal) Signed, sealed, and pronounced In presence of Aaron Abernathy, Joseph Taylor x his mark, Alexander Snell.

      To my son Arch I want my wife and son to have two horses of their choosing. State of Tennessee October Term 1816 Warren County Court I do hereby certify that the due execution of the within last will and Testament of Thomas Wilcher deceased was proven in open Court of the first day of the above Term by the oaths of Joseph Taylor and Alexander Shenell two of the subscribing witnesses thereto, and ordered to be recorded. Given at office the 7th June A. D. 1823 Jos. Coville Clk By S. D. Own D. Clk.

          This will was proved in open court on the 7th day of June 1823 and registered 9 June 1823. Thomas I and Ann had 7 daughters and 2 sons, all of whom received bequests from his will. [See "Siblings," p. 4] On 7 Oct 1818 the executors sold 333 acres for $1,053. They sold about 183 acres of land in Burke Co. NC on 25 Nov 1818 for $100 (was originally granted on 7 Jun 1799). Per "The North Carolinian Journal by Wm. Perry Johnson editor in March 1960 the North Carolina Revolutionary War Pay Vouchers listed Thomas Wilcher (or Welsher) from the Morgan District, Burke Co., NC. No further information is available, but this shows clearly Thomas Wilcher Sr was a Revolutionary War soldier from the state of North Carolina. He was in North Caroline from 1789 - 1807.

    • Burke County (NC) Land Grants, abstracted by Betsy Dodd Pittman, The Burke Journal, August, 1993, p. 17:

      "1409. THOMAS WELSHER 100 A. on No. side of Catawba River, on a conditional line between Welsher & Alexander Erwin, adj. McKenny. Ent. 31 Oct. 1779, for survey mentions John Deals line and the Improvements made by Thomas Day.]"

    • Father: See early Wiltsheirs from Barbadoes immigration about 1769 - John or Thomas Wiltsheir Mother: Born: About 1745 (court order on 2 Jun 1766 concerning road work listed Thomas Wilcher along with others which may suggest he was at least 21 years old at that time). Married to: Anne (Nancy) Walton Wilcher who was born about 1745-50 and died after 1831 - age ~81 (she relinquished unto Thomas Wilcher Jr and Alberto Vaughan ... my life estate to the farm on which I now live and all the personal property.") [Warren County, TN, Deed Vol. I, Book D, pp.412-415]. Based on the age of her father and her oldest child, and the age of her brother William; she may have been born about 1745-50. Assumed to have married about 1774 (first child born 1775).

    • Re: 1. Moses Park (1738-1828): His Descendants and Related Families Vaughan and Wilcher. Gateway Press, 1991. Birmingham Public Library. 2. The Wiseman Family and Allied Lines, Vol I, 1991, Eugene M. Wiseman Author [PO Box 14054, Bradenton, FL 34280-4054

    • Children: 1. Sarah (Sally) Wilcher, born 1775, Burke County, NC, died before July 8, 1830 (age
          ~55) in Warren County. She was the wife of James Hennessee (born 1766, died 3 Mar
          1851, son of Patrick Hennesee of Burke, County, NC). 2. Thomas W. Wilcher, Jr. born in the 1780's (Moses Park lists as 2nd child) - ~1785 3. Nancy Wilcher born 1776, Died 1843 in Blount County, Alabama married first Chambers, second George D. Staton (need to go back to Wiseman Collection and verify info on children) 4. Ritty (Ritrier, Kitriece, Kittie) Wilcher, born 1780, died 22 Aug 1827 in Cooper County,
           MO. She was the wife of Thomas Vaughn, Sr. - p 219, 248. 5. Elizabeth (Betsy) Wilcher was born 1782; died after 17 Dec 1835; married john
           Harper who died prior to the 1830 census. 6. Christian (Christeen, Christine) Wilcher, born 1790-1800 wife of Mr. North - p 283. 7. Winifred (Winny) Wilcher, wife of William Brassell, both living 1 Feb 1831 - p285. 8. Lucy Wilcher born 1784, died 1865 married first Joseph England, second Richard
           Forrest in 1828 - see p286. 9. Archibald born 1802-1804, never married, died about 1827 - page 265.

      Note: The exact order of births of the children, 7 daughters and 2 sons, is not known.

      Died: Between 8 Aug 1816 and 7 Oct 1816 in McMinnville, TN (about age 74) Buried: Buried in the Liberty Cumberland Presbyterian Church Cemetery, but exact location unknown.

    • The earliest records of Thomas Wilcher, Sr. are in Amherst County, Virginia and were two court cases which were started in Dec 1767 against Thomas Wilcher for slander decided in Wilcher's favor. The other was for trespass and assault, but it was dismissed by the plaintiffs. He was probably born in the 1740s in Virginia. A good assumption might be that he was about 21 years old when the court order on road work was issued on 2 Jun 1766. Thus, he might have been born about 1745.

    • On 5 Feb 1776 he was appointed as 1 of 4 appraisers for a personal estate in Amherst County, VA. During the 1770s in Amherst County no court cases could be found. He did buy and sell land with the purchase of 174 acres on 16 Apr 1770 of part of tract which had been conveyed by Peyton Randolph and Lusford Lomax, Jr. to Philip Grymes.In 1770 he bought 150 acres which he and his wife Anne sold on 13 Feb 1779. He bought 200 acres in Amherst County on 2 Jan 1785. On 7 May 1787 he sold 481 acres in Amherst County.

      Thomas Wilcher Sr and his wife Anne sold 681 of his 855 acres in 1787 and 1788. He and Anne sold 81 acres on 2 Jul 1787. On 4 Nov 1788 they sold 600 acres. He also sold 200 acres on the south side of Berry's Mountain which he had bought in Oct 1785. Also on 4 Nov 1788 Thomas Wilcher and Anne sold 400 acres on both sides of Harris Creek. In May 1787 he served on the Amherst County Court grand jury. The court orders of the late 1780s and early 1790s show that Thomas Wilcher was the defendant in two suits and was the plaintiff in six suits. None of these appear to be overly significant. There were other suits for amounts of about $100 or less, some of which were ruled in Wilcher's favor, and others dismissed.

      A case in court in May 1791 mentioned that Thomas Wilcher was "not a resident of Amherst County." In an Aug 1789 case it was state that "it appearing to the court that the said Thomas Wilcher hath removed to the State of North Carolina . . " He died in 1816 so he would have been about 71 years old at the time of his death. He moved to Burke County, NC in 1789, and to Warren County, TN in 1807. Thomas Wilcher, Sr purchased land on John's River in Burke County, NC as early as 1778. He moved there from Amherst Country, Virginia in 1789 (the suit against David Tinsley proves thatThomas Wilcher moved from Amherst County, VA, to North Carolina prior to Aug 1789).

      Thomas Wilcher's wife is thought by most Wilcher researchers to be Anne Walton. William Walton, Sr., was a Revolutionary Soldier, born 1735 in Virginia, son of William and Susannah Walton who were in Amherst County, VA by 1761 and in Burke County, NC 1792. Thomas Walton purchased 600 acres at the mouth of John's River from Thomas Welcher (later a plantation belonging to Colonel John Sudderth). Thomas Welcher's land in Burke Co., NC was granted to him by the State of North Carolina (copied from Burke: The History of a North Carolina County, 1777-1920).
      Thomas WElcher and William White were overseers of John's River in 1796. Patrick Hennessey lived on the south side of John's River. After Thomas Wilcher Sr's death it was conveyed in 1818 by "Joseph England, Thomas Wilcher, Jr. and Benjamin Wooten, all of Warren County, TN to William Erwin of Burke County, NC" ... "tract adjoining the lands of John and Samuel Franklin, William Erwin and the children of William Walton",. This was a tract of land granted to Thomas Wilcher Sr. in 1799 by the State of North Carolina. This deed is recorded in Deed Book C, Warren County, TN.

      Thomas Wilcher Sr moved to Warren County in 1807 (actually was White County that became Warren County about 1817-1820) from Burke County, NC. His business life is very well documented with many legal proceedings, including land deals and various disagreements with associates (see Moses Park reference). On 4 Dec 1807 he was 1 of 12 men appointed or commissioned as Justice of the Peace by the Tennessee General Assembly as part of the first County Court of Warren County [McMinnville at a Milestone 1810-1960 in the Birmingham Public Library written by the Southern Standard in McMinnville].

    • Thomas Wilcher Sr first arrived in White County in 1807, part of which became Warren County in late 1807. About 1807, Thomas Wilcher assignee of three Revolutionary War Soldiers, Martin Armstrong, John Nelson and Grady Byinham, entered a part of the land called for in the warrant of each. This was land extending south from the Barron Fork river to beyond present day Liberty Lane. Wilcher built a two-story brick home sometime after 1807, a portion of which exists recently as the home of Dr. B.C. Smoot. Thomas Wilcher Sr. died in this house.

      His earliest land grant records were in Aug 1808 in White County. There were six in the amount of 75 to 240 acres. He had 4 land grants for land in Warren Country of 33 to 125 acres on 24 Aug 1808. There were numerous other land related transactions. It is noted in the Warren County, TN marriage records prior to 1852 and court records prior to 1848 were lost or destroyed leaving quite a void for researchers.

      When Warren County was organized in 1807, according to the laws of the State, a temporary log house and jail were erected near the center of the county, where the courts were to be held until the citizens of the county should elect commissioners who were to select a proper place for a permanent county seat. In 1808 a small log courthouse was built on top of a high hill, near a big spring just above the Barron Fork - at the towns southeast fording place - and where the Looney's Trace then crossed the river.

      From 1808 until sometime in 1811, circuit court was well as the other courts, met in the little log house twice a year at which time other lawyers from other towns with the circuit attended. From Laughlin's "Reminiscences of McMinnville "as it was in 1811, he says "On occasions when the courts met in the log court house across the river, the judges and lawyers boarded about in the neighborhood as best they could. Most of them stayed in the home of Thomas Wilcher Sr. - two miles from the place of holding the court.

      After the death of Mr. Wilcher in 1816, the late Joshua Coffee occupied the house until his death in 1842 (Mr. Coffee didn't occupy the house until after Mrs. Wilcher's death). On 7 Oct 1818 the executors sold 333 acres for $1,053. They sold about 183 acres of land in Burke Co. NC on 25 Nov 1818 for $100 (was originally granted on 7 Jun 1799).

      One of the best known and first organized churches of Warren County was Liberty, a mile or so from McMinnville. As shown by his will, land was given by Thomas Wiltshire (Wilcher), the church house built and the church, Cumberland Presbyterian in doctrine, organized all in 1815. William Cheek Smartt is the reputed founder and he and John Allison, a Revolutionary soldier, were two of its first elders. On August 8, 1816, Thomas Wilcher gave the land to build the Cumberland Presbyterian Church at Liberty.

      Thomas Wilcher Sr and his wife, Anne Walton, are likely buried in the Liberty Cumberland Presbyterian Church cemetery. He donated the land for the cemetery. Liberty is 1 mile south of McMinnville off Highway 55 on Liberty Lane. Turn left going south on Morrison St on Old Morrison Hwy then Liberty Lane and the Liberty Cumberland Presbyterian Church will be on the right as well as the cemetery. Joseph M. Bragg and his wife, Richard M. Bragg, and other family members are buried here in order: Richard M. Bragg 14 Jun 1833 - 11 Dec 1858; Joseph M. Bragg 25 May 1798 - 9 Jul 1879; Clarissa T. Bragg 25 Sep 1806 - 16 Aug 1851; Hugh T. Bragg 25 Nov 1831 - 22 Dec 1845; and Martha Bragg 8 Feb 1845 - Jun 1845.

      In summary Thomas Wilcher was probably born about 1745-46. He moved from Amherst County, VA, to Burke County, North Carolina (near Morganton), when he was approximately 44 years old, in before Aug 1879. He moved on to Tennessee when he was about 62 years old. Thomas Wilcher died in Warren County, TN, Oct 1816 when he was about 71 years old.

    • Early Wilchers

      From "The Wiseman Family and Allied Lines, Vol I" found in the Warren County, TN genealogical library. The ancestors for the Warren Country, TN family by the surname Wilcher are difficult to assertain. The name is spelled Welcher, Whelchel, Wilsher, Wilshire, Wicher, Willshire, Whiltshire, Wilsure, Wilkshire in various early VA and NC records. In 1654 John Wiltshire is listed as a Virginia immigrant, and in 1679 several of the Wilsheir family immigrated from Barbados. There was a Thomas Wiltshire in Northampton country, VA in 1672 and in the Isle of Wight Country in 1682. By the mid 1700's Thomas, Dorcas, and Joseph Wilshire are in Caroline County, VA. John Weltshire was in Augusta County, VA in 1762 and David Whiticher is there in 1769. The name seems without doubt Wiltshire, at first, and shows an English origin - becoming Wilcher in both English and pioneer usage, until Wilcher became generally adopted. Thomas, of Warrant County, signs himself "Thomas Wiltshire" on several county records, one of them among the last he signed, in 1816 - the year of his death. (Copied from "The History and Genealogy of some pioneer Norther Alabama Families" by Mary N. Gibson - Brittain, Marie Brittain Craig, and Marjorie Craig Churchill.)

          Research on the surname "Wilcher" shows it to be a variation on the name "Wiltshire," a county in SW England. About 90% of all people with that name 200-300 years ago came from there. Wilshire, England, is probably where the American Wilchers came from. The vast majority of the Wilchers (or other spellings) who came to the New World in the 1600s and 1700s came as indentured servants, usually as an alternative to other punishment for petty offenses. The first Wilcher in America showed up in Virginia in 1635 as an indentured servant. Over the next 150 years a couple dozen others showed up in various places: Maryland, Pennsylvania, and the Bahamas. About 3/4 of the Wilchers came to Virginia in the 1600s and 1700s. One of these early Virginia

    • John WILCHAR is enumerated in the 1812 Warren County Tax List and can only assume that he must be a brother to Thomas. Father maybe 'Archibald'..DAH

      Abstraction from Thomas Bragg, 14 Apr 2005, Tom Bragg


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