was the first Edwards to come to Yancey County. He was born in September,
1750 in Baltimore County, MD. After moving to McAllister Town, PA,
he later moved to Bedford Co., VA where he resided until the Revolutionary
War. His pension records show that he volunteered and served many different
hitches in the army before coming to Jonesboro, TN. His sister, Mary,
married Christopher "Kit" Taylor and they ran a boarding house. One
of their boarders was Andrew Jackson. Because of his stay with the
Taylor's, the cabin has been preserved and is located downtown in Jonesboro,
In 1776 John Edwards
married Ruth Crabtree in Bedford Co., VA. She had a brother residing
in Yancey County. It is thought that because of this, John and Ruth
came to Yancey County, eventually. It is also believed that the area
called "Crabtree" was named for her brother.
John and Ruth
came to present day Yancey County in 1790, bringing eight of their twelve
children with them. Two years after their arrival here, they applied
for a divorce. It so happens this is the first divorce recorded in
Buncombe County, a portion which was later to become Yancey County.
The land deeds record that John got all the land they owned jointly, consisting
of several hundred acres. Ruth received a roan mare and a feather bed.
Of the eight recorded
children there were:
John, James and
Edmond fought in the War of 1812. It is said that Edmond had one
of his ears bitten off in a fight. Cropping was prevalent in those
days for someone who had been convicted of a crime, so in order to prove
that he had not been cropped, he went to court to set the record straight.
While we have
records of the children of John and Ruth Edwards, this article follows
the lineage through James Edwards, son of John and Ruth. He was known
back then as "sheep eatin' Jim". It seems that James went to town
one day to buy a pair of shoes for his wife. After he bought the
shoes and on his way home, he met two men with two sheep that they wished
to exchange for the pair of shoes. Jim, being a man who thought more
of his stomach than his wife's feet, agreed to exchange the shoes for the
sheep if he could remain and eat the sheep provided the men and their wives
prepared them. Thus he did until all the sheep were devoured and
someone else wore his wife's shoes. James had married Clarisa Mashburn.
She died three days after Jim in 1897.
Jim was a colorful
character, as you might well imagine. He fought in the Civil War
and was discharged because of chronic diarrhea. He settled in the
Piney Hill section of the county and later moved to Ramseytown, where he
lived until his death.
(b. 1840; d. 1915) Married (1) Sam Shehan (2) Alney
and Mary (Lewis) Edwards who had:
who married Tom Huston
Edwards, who married Mary Lewis
who married Hicks Sparks
who never married
who married John Clark Johnson
who married William Fender
Edwards married Rebecca Hensley and had:
material for this article was abstracted from an article "Edwards Generation
in Yancey" which appeared in the Yancey Journal, date unknown, and is available
at OBCGS Library. The article is based on the research of Terry Edwards.
AND MARY (BRITTAIN) EDWARDS
Shirley (Brittain) Cawyer, P.O. Box 164, Stephenville, TX 76401
Thomas Edwards was born ca 1774 in Virginia. On the 1850 census of
Cherokee Co, Alabama, p. 170, 27th District, house #339: Thomas Edwards,
age 76, born in Virginia, shoemaker. Living with him was a granddaughter,
Mary Edwards. We believe this was a daughter of Thomas' son, Henley
P. Edwards. The parents of Thomas Edwards are not know, but this compiler
believes that Thomas Edwards' father was the Thomas Edwards on the 1790
census of Rutherford Co, NC. There are several deeds in Rutherford
Co. for an older Thomas Edwards.
Thomas Edwards married in Buncombe Co, NC, ca 1801 to Mary
Brittain, born ca 1784 in Burke Co, NC, a daughter of James Brittain
Sr. and Delilah (Stringfield) Brittain. (James Brittain is on the
1800 census of Buncombe Co.) Mary (Brittain) Edwards died between
1840 census and 1850 census of Cherokee Co, Alabama. It is not known
where she is buried.
Thomas and Mary Edwards lived for a while in Buncombe Co, then moved to
Haywood Co, NC, before the 1820 census. Numerous deeds are recorded
in Haywood Co. for Thomas and some of the Brittain relatives.
By the mid-1830's, Thomas Edwards is back in Buncombe, now Henderson Co,
NC. He appears on Court Minutes and Quarter Please Sessions, deeds,
and was excused from paying taxes in Henderson Co. for the years 1838-1839
for land lying in Henderson Co.
Henderson Co. Court Minutes of November 1840: "land belonging to
Thomas Edwards joining lands of Samuel Neely on Clear Creek, containing
twenty-five acres, is to be sold for back taxes."
Thomas and Mary (Brittain) Edwards moved to Cherokee Co, Alabama, before
the 1840 census. Several of their children also moved to Alabama
at the same time.
Thomas and Mary (Brittain) Edwards had eleven children:
Naomi Edwards, b. 29 Nov. 1802, Buncombe Co; m. David Howell; d. 11 Mar
1850, Haywood Co. After the death of Naomi, David Howell married
her first cousin, Mary M. Ann Edwards, daughter of Ellis and Amelia (Brittain)
Brittain Edwards, b. 1804 Buncombe Co.; d. 1888 in Walker Co, Georgia.
He married Nancy Johnson (1800-1888); and had 14 children.
Nancy Edwards, b. 16 July 1806, Buncombe Co, NC; d. 12 July 1881, Etowah
Co, Alabama; m. 1828, Buncombe Co, NC, to Joseph Johnson, son of
James and Ann (Cole) Johnson of Buncombe Co. (now Henderson Co.).
They were the parents of 9 children.
Charlote Edwards, b. 8 November 1810, Buncombe Co, NC; d. 15 Feb. 1892,
Henderson Co, NC; m. Noble Johnson, son of James and Ann (Cole) Johnson
of Buncombe. They were the parents of 9 children.
Henley P. Edwards, was born ca 1809, Buncombe Co, NC; d. during the Civil
War in what is now Faulkner Co, Arkansas. He appears on deeds, jury
duty and Court Minutes of both Buncombe and Haywood Counties, NC.
It is believed by this compiler that Henry was married twice. He
is on the 1840 and 1850 census of Cherokee Co, Alabama, with wife, Lucinda
Caroline and children.
Narcissa Edwards, b. 11 December 1813 in either Buncombe or Haywood Co,
NC; d. 29 August 1888, Etowah Co, Ala. She married John Rees(e).
Both are buried at Reece City, Etowah Co. in the Bethany Cemetery.
They were the parents of 9 children.
Elizabeth Edwards, b. 15 Nov. 1815, in either Buncombe or Haywood Co, NC;
d. 26 Jul 1855 in Georgia - possibly Whitfield County; m. in Buncombe Co,
NC, John King, son of Benjamin and grandson of Samuel King Sr. and Mrs.
Elizabeth (Underwood) Davenport King of what is now Henderson Co, NC.
They had ten children.
After Elizabeth's death, John King married, in Georgia, Mary Ann Strickland
and had ten more children.
Edwards, b. 1 Feb. 1817, Haywood Co, NC; d. 19 July 1897, Williamson Co,
Texas; m. in Buncombe Co, NC, 4 Sept. 1838 to John Thomas Bryson.
Both are buried at Liberty Hill Cemetery, Williamson Co, Tx. They
were the parents of 8 children.
Celia Edwards, b. 10 Sept. 1819, Haywood Co, NC; d. 18 Feb. 1895, Etowah
Co, Alabama; m. Joseph Wilson in Alabama. Both are buried at the
Methodist Cemetery, Turkeytown, Ala. They raised 6 children.
T. Edwards, b. 24 Jan. 1818, Haywood Co, NC; d. St. Clair Co,
Alabama; m. Mary R. McBrayer. They had 7 children.
Edwards, b. ca 1827, NC; m. Samuel Rees. They are on the 1850
census of Cherokee Co, Ala. Three known children.
Deeds, Court Minutes, Census of Buncombe, Haywood, and Henderson
Bible records of the Brittain Edwards family, the Narcissa (Edwards)
the John and Elizabeth (Edwards) King family; old family letters;
census of NC,
Alabama, and Texas; Bryson records from Mrs. Bill Bryson of
June 1984, Vol. V, #6, p. 84-52
EDWARDS and AMELIA BRITTAIN
Cawyer (Mrs. T.B.), P.O. Box 164, Stephenville, TX 76401
Ellis Edwards was born 11 Sept. 1779 in Virginia, and died 11 March 1862
in Haywood Co, NC. It is believed that Ellis was a brother to the
Thomas Edwards, born ca 1774, Virginia, and married Mary Brittain, sister
to Amelia Brittain, wife of Ellis Edwards.
Ellis Edwards does not appear on deeds of Buncombe Co, yet he married there
ca 1806 to Amelia
Brittain, born 11 April 1785, died 2 April 1852, daughter of James
Brittain, Sr. and wife Delilah Stringfield. Both Ellis and Amelia
Edwards are buried in the Bethel Methodist Cemetery, Haywood Co. Amelia's
obituary appeared in an old Methodist newspaper, and this compiler has
a copy of it.
There are many deeds recorded in Haywood Co. for Ellis Edwards. Some
of them are between Thomas Edwards who married Mary Brittain; others are
between other members of the Brittain family. Ellis Edward's estate
was administered by his son, Benjamin Martin Edwards, and recorded in Bk.
U., page 365-371, Haywood Co, NC.
From Haywood Co. Court Minutes and Quarter Pleas Sessions, 1829 (from microfilm
of the original): "State vs. Henley Edwards, Thomas Edwards, Jay
Edwards, Phillip Edwards, Ellis Edwards, and Asaph Wilson came into court
and acknowledged judgement against themselves for the fines and costs as
to Thomas Edwards and Jay Edwards.
Ellis and Amelia
(Brittain) Edwards were parents of the following children:
L. Edwards, b. 23, Feb 1807, Buncombe Co, NC; d. 14 July 1826; bur: Bethel
Cemetery, Haywood Co, NC
Stringfield Edwards, b. 26 Feb. 1809; d. 2 Sept. 1874; bur. Bethel Methodist
Cemetery, Haywood Co, NC; m. Haywood Co, 23 Dec. 1832 to Harriett M. Coleman,
b. 3 Feb. 1815; d. 15 May 1896; bur. Bethel Methodist Cemetery.
A. Edwards, b. ca 1811, Haywood Co, NC; probably d.
Buncombe Co, NC. She married in Haywood Co. 17 Sept. 1840 to Rev.
Andrew Pickins, as his second wife. Andrew Pickins married first
to Catherine Weaver on Sept. 4, 1815. She was born 21 June 1796,
and died in 1836. She is buried at Weaverville, NC. On the
1850 census of Buncombe Co, we find Rev. Andrew and Deliah (Edwards) Pickins
on p. 217, #298; with two females in the household: Margaret S. Pickins,
age 15, and Emily T. Pickins, age 5, both born in NC. It is not known
if Deliah (Edwards) Pickins had children or not. Delilah married
2nd. in Buncombe Co, 1 January 1866 to a widower, Abner Jervice.
W. Edwards, b. ca 1813 in Haywood Co, NC. He married there 1 December
1834 to Elizabeth Truitt. We do not have the death date for Phillip,
but he continues to appear on census and deeds in Haywood Co, NC, indicating
that he spent his life in that county.
S. Edwards, b. 11 August 1815, Haywood Co, NC; d. 14 January 1871 in Scott
Co, Virginia. He was a Methodist Minister. He married Jane
Hackney 23 July 1850. (Obituary appeared in Methodist paper.)
M. Ann Edwards, b. 8 March 1818, Haywood Co; d. 31 January 1890; bur. in
old Matt Cemetery on Jonathan's Creek in Haywood County by side of her
husband, David Howell and his first wife, Naomi Edwards. Mary Edwards
married David Howell in Haywood Co. in 1853.
Martin Edwards, b. 6 January 1821, Haywood Co; d. 22 Feb. 1898; bur. Bethel
Methodist Cemetery, Haywood Co. He married in Haywood Co, 4 Sept.
1843 to Eliza Ratcliff, b. 27 Aug. 1825; d. 1 Sept. 1904; bur. Bethel Methodist
Cemetery, Haywood Co, NC.
Edwards, b. ca 1825, Haywood Co, was single on the 1860 census and was
a school teacher. No date of death.
September 1984, Vol. V, #9, p. 84-83 thru 85