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1792

The following series brings you the full copies of early minutes of the Court of Common Pleas and Quarter Sessions. They were originally transcribed from microfilm by William Yates, Editor of The Ridge Runners beginning in August 1975 (Vol. IV, #2), and is being reprinted for OBCGS readers with his gracious permission. Spelling and punctuation almost verbatim from his copy.
  
BUNCOMBE COUNTY COURT MINUTES

FIRST SESSION APRIL 1792
While many records of Buncombe County have been lost, some of the early minute books of the Court of Common Pleas and Quarter Sessions remain inteact. The following verbatim copy is from a volume entitled Records of Buncombe County Court from April Term 1792 Til April Term 1796, Inclusive.
North Carolina, Buncombe County
April 16th AD 1792.
Agreeably to a commission to us directed the county Court of said county was begun opened and held at the house of Col. William Davidson Esquire.Present: James Davidson, David Vance, William Whitson, William Davidson, James Alexander, James Brittain, Philip Hoodenpile. Took the oath of Justices of the peace and the oaths for the qualification of public Offices and took their seats as justices.Silence being commanded and proclamation being made the court was opened in due and solemn form of law by John Patton specially appointed for that purpose.
Lambert Clayton & William Brittain being duly commissioned as Justices of said County appeared and were qualified as such, by taking the oaths for the qualification of public officers and the oath of office as Justices of the peace for said county and took their seats.The court proceeded to the Election of a sheriff for said county and did elect to that office Joseph Hughey Esqr. who was directed to find security give bond and qualify tomorrow at 10 o’clock.The court then proceeded to Elect the clerk of said county and did elect thereto David Vance, Esqr who was directed to give bond with security tomorrow at 10 o’clock.
The court then proceeded to the Election of entry officer ____ claims for lands in said county and did elect thereto Thomas Davidson Esquire, &c &c.

The court proceeded to elect a surveyor and did elect to that office John Patton Esqr who was directed to give bond and security tomorrow 10 o’clock.

The court proceeded to elect a register and did elect thereto John Davidson (son of James —)

The court proceeded to the election of a ranger and elect John Dillard &c.

The court proceeded to the election of a coroner, and did elect to that officer Edmund James Esqr.

Court adjuourned till tomorrow morning 10 o’clock.

Court met according to adjournment.

David Vance was qualified as clerk, and gave for securities James & William Davidson who was accepted by Court.

Joseph Hughey was qualified as sheriff for said county and gave security Willi. Davidsonn and Andw. Miller which was accepted.

John Davidson (son of James) was qualified as register and gave security William and James Davidson which was accepted by Court.

A deed from William Davidson & Joseph Henry to David Miller was acknoledged in open court and ordered to be registered.

An article of agreement between James Miller and Taughstile Avery proved in 0open Court by the oath of Charles McDowell and Reuben Wood and ordered to be recorded and registered.

John Patton was qualified as surveyor and gave security

William Whitson and Lambert Clayton which was accepted by Court.

Thomas Davidson was qualified as entry officer for said County and gave security Lambert Clayton & Daniel Smith which was accepted.

John Dillard took the oath prescribed by law for the qualification of public officers and the oath of office as Stray Master or Ranger.

Ordered that Philip Hodenpile Esqr. bring to July term three orphan children which are in his possession and care, and that William Hinton, Richd Pruitt, Wm Edwards, Jno Edwards and Edmund Palmer be summoned to attend said court to give evidence in behalf said orphans – and for defendant summons Thomas Hopper.

Ordered by the court that the following persons be summoned to attend as jurors at the succeeding term, Viz.

 

George Baker; Hickman Hensely; Henry Aline; Thomas Patton; Matthew Patton; Samuel Forgee; Robert Patton; Will Dever Snr; John Weaver; Will Gredger; Benj. Hawkins; Wm. Greggory; Benj. Odell; Joshua English; Thomas May; James Strongfield Sr.; Nicholis Woodfin; Benj. Johnson; Elizjah Williamson; John Craig; James Willson; John Ashworth; Henry Deweese; John Dillard; James Cravens; Will. forster; Gabriel Ragsdale; James Clemmons; Harmon Reid; James McMahan; Simon Kuykandall; John Philips; James Medlock; Adam Dunsmore; Benjn. Yearly; Daniel Smith; Nat. Smith; Benj. Johnson.

On the motion that an attorney for the State in Buncombe county be appointeed, Reuben Wood Esqur was duely Elected.

The court proceeded to elect a trustee for said county. John Craig was duely Elected to that office.

 

Know all men by these presents we David Vance, James Davidson, and William Davidson all of the [county] of Buncombe are held and firmly bound unto the Justices of the county court of said county now being and to their successors
in the full sum of two thousand pounds for payment of which we bind ourselves, our, and each of heirs, Executors and administrators Jointly and severally firmly by these presents, sealed with our seals and dated the 17th day of April AD 1792.
The condition of the above obligation is such that whereas the above bounden David Vance is appointed clerk of the County court of Buncombe, Now if the said David Vance shall well and faithfully and safely keep the records of said County court, and well and truely, and faithfully execute his said office of Clerk of the said County, then the obligation to be void, Else to remain in full force and
Sealed and delivered in presence of
Wm. Whitson D. Vance (seal)
James Davidson (seal)
Will Davidson (seal)

 

Know all men by these presents that we Joseph Hughey, William Davidson & Andr. Miller all of Buncombe County and State of North Carolina are held and firmly bound unto Alexan. Martin Esqr. Governor and his successors in office in the penal sum of five thousand pountds, to the which payment well and truly to be made and done we bind ourselves jointly and severally our joint and several heirs Executors & administrators firmly by these presents Sealed with our seals and ate the 17th day of April A D 1792.The condition of the above obligation is such that — whereas the above bound Joseph Hughey is constituted and appointed sheriff of Buncombe County by a commission from the Governor under the seal of the State dated the …day of … just past, if therefore the said Joseph Hughey shall well and truly Execute and …satisfy all fees and sums of money by him received or levied by virtue of any process unto the proper office, by which same by the tenor thereof ought be paid or the person or persons to hwhom the shall be due his, her or their Executors administrators, attorneys or agents and in all other things will truely and faithfully execute the office of Sheriff during his continuance therein: Then the above obligation to void otherwise to remain in full force and virtue.Sealed & delivered in presence of D. Vance.
Joseph Hughey (seal), Wm. Davidson (seal), Andr.Miller (seal)

Ordered that Samuel Randolph act as constable for the term of one year from this date.
The court proceeded to election of a coroner and did Elect Edmund James to that office who was qualified agreeable – law and gave security, James Davidson & Wm. Whitson.
John Craig was qualified as county trustee and gave security James and Wm Davidson accepted by court.

Ordered that Each taxable person in the county of Buncombe pay a county tax for the year 1792 of one shiling & six pence on each poll and six pence on each 100 acres of land.

Ordered that John Edwards, Robert Tredway, Will. Devor, Alexander St. Clair, & John Patton Jr. be appointed constables in said County for the ensuing year.

Ordered by the court that William Forster, Will Barnes, James Medlock, John Bradly, Andrew Miller, Daniel Smith, James Stringfield, James Dever, Will. Fletcher, William Boylstone, John Wood, Edward Johnson, Harman Reid, James Chambers, & John Black be a jury to view and lay off a road from Col. William Davidsons on Swannano, to Benjamin Davids Creek the nearest and best way according to law and that said jury meet on the third Monday in May next at the ford of Benjamin Davidsons creek at which time and place Lambert Clayton Esq. is to attend and qualify said jury who to report to July Court.

Ordered that William Forster be overseer of the road from William Davidson’s to Samuel Forgies and that the inhabitants from Clouse, said Clouse included on both sides of Swannano, including the waters of French broad River and Swannano as high as said Forgie’s work on said road.

Ordered that Hickman Hinsely, Geo. Baker, Henry Hensely, Abner Barnett, Austin Choate, Will. Tredway, Robert Tedway, Gabriel Keith, John Dillard, John Weaver, James Jams, John Street, Nathan Dever, Jacob Waggonor, Jas. Bounds, James Boys, and John Chambers be a jury to view and lay off a road from the waggon ford of Rime creek to join the road from the Turkey Cove ____ to Robert Hintons on Lindsey’s creek Cane River the most advantagious and best way according to law, which jury is to meet the 4th Monday of May at John Dillard’s – William Brittain to attend and qualify said jury who are to report to July Court.

Ordered that Lambert Clayton take in the taxable property from the head of Frenchbroad River to Little river including all the inhabitants on Little river and return to July Court – James Brittain from the mouth of Little River on both sides of Frenchbroad River to the waters of Cane Creek – William Whitson all the waters of Cane creek and both sides of Swannano, as high as Samuel Forgy’s – William Brittain all the waters between big Ivey and Bever dam – James Alexander all the waters of Swannano above Sam Forgy’s, & Philip Hoodfenpile, all the rest of the County.
Ordered that Joseph Smith be overseer of the road from the mouth of Swannano to Rems creek and that the inhabitants who open the road work upon it.

Ordered that William Davison have liberty to build a Grist mill on Swannano near his saw Mill, provided he build said mill on his own land.

Court adjourned until the third monday in July to meet at Col. William Davidson’s.
Test. D. Vance C.C.

 

BUNCOMBE COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA

Second and Third Terms of Court – 1792
Minutes of July Court 1792. At a court of common pleas and quarter begun opened and held for the county of Buncombe at the house of Colo. william Davidson on the third monday of July A.D. 1792. Present the Worshipful: James Davidson, Will Whitson, Will Davidson, Will Brittain, Lambert Clayton.William Flether being duly commissioned as justice of the peace for said County appeared and was qualified as such, by taking the oaths for the qualification of public officers, and the oath of office as Justice of the peace for said county and took his seat.
Court adjourned till tomorrow morning 10 o’clock. Met according to adjournment. 
Present: James Davidson, Will. whitson, James Alexander, Will Brittain, Lambert Clayton, Will. Fletcher.Grand Jury: Foreman Adam Dunsmore; James Crisoons; james Clements; Will Greggory; Gabriel Ragsdale; Elijah Williamson; John Weaver, George Baker, William Forster; James McMahan; Robert Patton; Thomas May; Benjamin Hawkins; James Medlock; Harman Reid.Petit Jury: Will Tredway; Henry Adkins; thomas Patton; Matthew Patton; Samuel Forgy; Will Gredger; Benj. Odell Sr.; Josa.English; Henry Deweese; Simeon Kuykendall; Benj. Yardly; Nathan Smith; Jas Stringfield; Nicholis Woodfin; John Craig; James Willson; John Ashworth; John Dillard; John Philips; Danl. Smith; Benj. Johnson.Received the report of the Jury appointed April to view and lay off a road from Col. William Davidsons to the ford of Benj. Davidsons Creek ordered as it is reported by the Jury of View, be a public road and that Benjamin Hawkins be overseer from Colo. Wm. Davidson’s to French broad river below the mouth of Avery’s creek, to make the bank good. Captn. Patton’s company to work. John Craig overseer from French broad river to Mills River. Captn. Coopers Company to work. Captn. Justice overseer from the ford of Mills’ River to the mountain top at the head of Boulstone’s creek his own company to work. Ebenezer Fain, overseer from the top of the mountain to Benj. Davidson creek. Capt. Clayton’s company to work.The last will and testament of Jonas Gooch was proved by John Gooch & William Ryan, subscribing witnesses thereto, to have been acknowledged by the testator, and that he was of sound mind and memmory at that time.

Ordered that letters testamentary issue to James McNabb & William Gredger, Executors of the last will and testament of Jonas Gooch, dec’d who came into court and were qualified according to law. Letters issued accordingly.

John Deweese, who was bound on Recog. to this court appeared and heared and witnesses examined on suspicion of Buggery, the court having considered thereof, Ordered that he be discharged, the suspicion being too tight to send him to the supr. Court.

Ordered that the following persons serve at Morgan Supr. Court Septr. Term as the Venire from Buncombe (Viz) Matthew Patton, William Davidson, David Vance, Lambert Clayton, & Jamees Brittain.

Ordered by court Colo. John Earle have liberty to erect a grist mill on the middle fork of mud creek, on his own land.

A Bill of Sale from Tho. Handlin, to John Davidson (son of james) for a negro woman named Else and her son a boy of 4 or five weeks old was proved by the oath of Benjamin Johnson a subscribing witness thereto- ordered to be registered.
A deed of gift from William Jones to Daniel Forster of six head of Cattle 4 head of horse creatures a house and house hold furniture was proved by the oath of Philip Hoodenpile Esqr.

Whereas Philip Hoodenpile has in his possession three orphan Children – In conse- quence of a complaint being made to april term past that said Hoodenpile did not use said orphas agreeable to contract made with him at the time they were bound to him the court proceeded to issue an order for said Hoodenpile to appear at this term who did appear and was heard, and witnesses examined. The court having considered thereof, ordered that said Hoodenpile deliver said three orphan Children to Kinchen Holcombe who is to keep them untill called upon by Court.

A deed from Wm. and James Davidson to for 640 acres of land was proved in open court by Joshua Williams and Wm(?) Deaver, the subscribing witnesses thereto – ordered to be registered.

A deed from James Miller to Andrew Miller for 291 acres was proved in open court by William Fletcher one of the subscribing witnesses – Ordered to be registered.
Feliz guilbert in open court took the oaths for the qualification of public officers and the oath of office as constable – gave bond and securities Benjamin McWhister and Hamilton Kuyle which was accepted by Court.

Court adjourned till tomorrow morning 10 o’clock. Met according to adjournment. 

Present the worshipful: James Davidson, Lambert Clayton, Wm. Fletcher.

On motion of Wallace Alexander Esqr. the petitions of Joseph Henry and William Davidson was prefered. Ordered to ly for consideration untill next Term.

The State vs Richard Yardly: Indest. P.Larcy. Jury Impannelled & Sworn (Viz).
Wm. Tredway; Thomas Patton; Matthew Patton; Samuel Forgy; Wm. Gudger; Benj. Odell; Nicholas Woodfin; James Wilson; John Dillard; John Philips; Daniel Smith; Nathan Smith.

The jury find the defendant Richard Yardly guilty of the felony of Petit Larcony in manner and form as charged in the bill of Indictmemt. Motioned by the defendants counsil for a new trial. Over ruled by court. An appeal prayed to Morgan Supr. Court and granted. Princl. bound 200 pounds Benjamin Yardly and John Craig securities bound 100 pounds each for Richd. Yardly’s appearance at Morgan Supr. Court Septr. next to answer to a bill of Indt.

Ordered by court that the following persons serve as jurors at october Sessions 1792 viz:

 

Joseph Gash; Jas. chambers; Jos. Smith; Wm. Metlock; Jno Patton; Jno. Gash; Danl. Killian; Baxter Davis; Robert St. Clair; Ebenezer Fain; Robert Orr; Jno. Alexander; Jas. Cunningham; Jos. Moore; Wm. Kyle; Benj. McWhorter; Moses Ashbrook; James Deaver; Andrew Mills; Amos Justice; John Box; Edmund Palmer; Tho. Woodfin; Jos. Bounds; William Dever Senr; Charles Gwin; Abner Rose; Saml. Boydston; John Bounds; John Staunton; Hickman Hensely; Tho. Rhay; Jno. Newport; Wm. Willson; James Bridges; Edward Williams.

A deed from James Davidson Junr. to James Dunsmore for 150 acres of land was proved in open court by Abraham Hollinsworth a subscribing witness thereto, Ordered to be registered.

Order that John Baker be appointed overseer of the road from Hinton’s Mill
on Caney river to the Burks line Turky Cove the Inhabitants of Caney river to work on said road.

On motion of Waightsille Avery Esqr. that Jacob Pyburn should be appointed guardian of Edward Pyburn a minor as his next friend to defend the suit of John Deweese which motion was over ruled by court.

Ordered by court that James Sams, Joseph Bounds, Honsy Dowlls, William Sams, William Tredway, Robert Tredway, Christopher choate, Jno. Hinton, Geo. Baker,
Tho. Rhea, John Baker, James Hensely, Henry Hensely and John Edwards be and they are hereby appointed a jury to view mark and lay off a road the nearest and best way according to law from Austin Choates on Ivy River to Hinton’s mill on Caney River who are to meet at Mr. Hoodenpile’s on the third monday in August said Hoodenpile is to qualify said Jury who are to report to Octor. Term 1792.

Ordered by court that Benj. Odell serve as constable in Buncombe county, who is to appear give bond & Security next term.

A bill of divource from Ruth Edwards, to her husband John Edwards was proved in open court by Philip Hoodenpile Esqr. a subscribing witness thereto – ordered to be registered.

Ordered by court that Austin Choate, Wm. Brittain, John Dillard, CharlesGwin, James Standfield, Henry Adkins, John Weaver, John Chambers, James Boys, Henry Roberts, John Bounds, Nathan Dever, Edmund Palmer, Gabriel Keith, Jacob Biffles, & James Love be a jury to view mark and lay out a road from the waggon ford on Rims Creek the nearest and best way according to law to Austin Choates on Ivy River who are to meet the third monday in august at John Dillards, Wm Brittain to attend and qualify said Jury to are to report to Octor. term 1792.

Court adjourned until the third monday in October. Test. D. Vance C.C.

 

 

MINUTES OF OCTOBER COURT – 1792
At a court of common pleas and quarter sessions began opened and held for the county of Buncombe at the dwelling house of Colo. William Davison on the third monday of October A.D. 1792. Present: William Davidson, Lambert Clayton, William Fletcher.
GrandJury: Moses Ashbrook; James Chambers; Joseph Smith; Baxter Davis; James Dever; Andr. Miller, John Bounds; Wm. Devor Senr.; Chas. Gwin; Joseph Bounds; Hickman Hensely; Edwd. Williams; Edmund Palmer.Petit Jury not sworn.Ordered by court that John Wallace be overseer of the rutherford road from the ford of Cane creek to the County line, by the way of Coopers gap and point look out the taxables of Hooper’s creek and clear Creek to work on said road.A deed from nathan Deaver to John Biffle for 200 acres of land was acknowledged in open court and ordered to be registered.Court adjourned till tomorrow morning 10 o’clock. Met according to adjournment.
Ordered by court that the following persons be a jury to view a piece of land entered by robert Love and Wm. Tredway to erect an Iron works and report thereon agreeably to act of Assembly. The entry Officers certificate being filed in my office – Viz: 

William Devor Sr.; John Dillard; Wm. Ryan; James Cravens; james Boys; Jos. Rice; Jas. McNabb; Wm. Griffory; Wm. Ingram; Thos. Davidson; John Weaver; Nathan Dever.

Ordered by court that a certificate Issue the Secry. of State to correct an error in the courses of a patent grant to William Davidson and Joseph Henry.

Ordered that David Vance survey and platt of a tract of land in dispute between W. Avery Esqr. plaintiff and Wm. Fletcher defendant and report thereon to January term 1793. Vance for plaintiff.

James Alexander came into court and took the oath prescribed by law to support the constitution of the United States and took his seat as a Justice of the peace.

W. Avery vs Wm. Fletcher; Caveat. By consent of parties ordered the case be tryed in open court January term 1793.

Ordered that James Davidsons overseer of the road leading up Swannano, alter the road as follows, Viz Leaving the old road below Benjamin McWhiter’s and going into the school road, and along said road into the old road at James Davidson’s barn – and above the Jumping . . . turn to the right hand and into the old road near Adam Dunsmore’s.

A bill of sale from John Partin to John Hightower for four Negros, one wench named Cate, one boy Luke, one by named Henry, and one boy named Jo – was proved in open court by the oath of Thomas Randolph a subscribing witness thereto – & ordered to be registered.

Court adjourned till tomorrow 10 ‘clock.

Court met according to adjournment. Present: James Brittain, William Brittain, Lambert Clayton.

The Jury appointed to view mark and lay off a road from the ford of Rims creek to Austin Choates on Ivy River report that a good convenient road can be made as follows)Viz) Beginning that the ford of Rims creek and along the Old Bald mountain road passing the house of John Dillard and along on or near the same by Henry Atkins, from thence to big Ivy crossing at or near the ford, from thence on, or near the old road to the end of the little mountain, then leaving the same to the right hand taking down a ridge to little Ivy crossing the same – from thence taking up a branch to the path leading from James Sams to Austin Choates and along said path to Choates house – Ordered that Wm. Griggory act as overseer to open & clear out said road, the taxables on Rims creek, Flat creek, Big Ivy & Gabriels creek work upon said road.

Ordered that Thomas Davidson, Jos. Rice, robert Love, James Alexander, Wm. Dever Senr., Thomas Patton, James McNabb, Wm. Davidson, David Vance, Henry Roberts, Jacob Biffle, John Weaver and Wm. Murphy be appointed a Jury to view mark and lay off a road from the ford of Swannano, above robert Patton’s the nearest and best way to Rims creek to the bald mountain road and report to next Court.

A deed from James Murphey to Martin Gash for 200 acres of land was proved in open court by Wm. and Joseph Gash, the subscribing witnesses – Ordered to be registered.
An inventory of the Estate of Jonas Gooch dec’d was returned by Wm. Gredger [ed.note, prob.Gudger] and James McNabb, the executors of said estate amot 97 pounds, 8 shillings.

Ordered by court that the youngest boy of the orphans in possession of Kinchien Holcombe be bound to William Kerr, and the girl to James McMahan.

A deed from John Gillam to Joseph Bounds for 200 acres of land was proved in open Court by Jacob Bayles, a subscribing witness. ordered to be registered.

A deed from Wm. Whitson to John Kellor, for 69 acres of land was acknowledged in open court and ordered to be registered.

Ordered by court that the following receipt be entered on the minute dockett. Viz.
To all Christian people to whom these presents shall come. Know ye that I John Biffle, of Buncombe County North Carolina received a penal Bond of William Whitson for making a title to me for 69 acres of land lying on Ivy – being a part of a large tract which said Whitson holds there. Therefore I the above John Biffle declare this 17th day of Octr. that said Whitson hath made a sufficient right by deed and full conveyance unto John Cellor, the transferee, of me the above John Biffle for the above 69 acres of land, and this receipt shall be sufficient discharge against the same. Given under my hand this 17th of Octr. 1792. Test. John Craig. (signed) John Biffle.

Ordered by court that the following persons serve as Jurors at Jan. 1793.

 

John Box; Jos. Boydston Sr.; Jos. Stringfield Sr.; John Weaver; Charles Gwin; Richard Blevans; Moses Choate; James Ballinger; Harman Reid; Robert Reid; Robert Rogers; Jno. Hightower; Wm. Chambers; Danl. Smith; Wm. Gudger; James Grave; James Patton; Jno. Moore; Jas. Willson; Jno. Ashworth; Jno. Bradly Senr.; Martin Webb; Jas. Wood; Jno. Craig; Moses Crawford; Isaac Crawford; Drury Robinson; Saml. Parkes; Benj. Hawkins; James James; Jos. Vaughan; Wm. Wilson; Nonathan. McPeters; John Newport; Jos. Boyes.

Ordered that Robert Orr, James Seds, Jas. Blythe, James James. Joshua english, Benjamin Odell Jr., Moses Crawford, Archebald Neill, Drury Robinson; Robert St. Clair; Joseph Chatton; Matthew Patterson; Shadrack Gibbs; and Edward Johnson be a jury to View, mark and lay off a road from the ford of BenjaminDavidson’s creek across the mountain to the head of Saluda keeping as near the old path as practicable for waggons to run – to meet November 8th and report to Jany. term 1793.

Court adjourned till the third monday in January to meet at this place. Certified D. Vance C.C.

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