Early Terminology Used in Colonial America.

I found the following terminology rather interesting in understanding life in the Colonial Days.

Ancient Planter-  Someone who came to Virginia prior to Sir Thomas Dale’s May 1616 departure and had lived in the colony for at least three years when applying for a patent.  Ancient planters were eligible for 100 acres of land and had a few other privileges.

Escheat:  the revision of land to the Crown or other granting party (in the case of Proprietary territories) when a patentee failed to leave heirs or was found guilty of a major crime.

Established Church:  The Anglican Church, which was the Virginia colony’s state church until the time of the American Revolution.

First (1st) Supply:  the first group of new colonists to arrive in Jamestown after the initial establishment of settlement.  They landed in January 1608.

Freedom Dues:  the allotment of corn and clothes usually provided to a newly freed servant who had completed his/her agreed upon term of service.

Headright:  an entitlement of 50 acres of land, awarded to someone who paid for his own (or another person’s) transportation to Virginia.

Hundreds:  a seventeenth century term used in reference to a large plantation .  Prior to the formation of county government, the leaders of Hundreds were authorized to settle petty disputes and perform other functions associated with leadership.

Indentured Servant: a person of either sex who agreed to work for a specific amount of time in exchange for transportation, food, shelter, and clothing. A guardian could sign a contract on a minor child’s behalf.

Old Style and New Style Calendar Dates:  An Old Style, or Julian Calendar was in general use in England until 1752.  With the Old Style Calendar, March 25th was the first day of the new year. (New Year’s Day).

Parish: The geographic area served by a church.

Plant: to clear, develop or settle upon unclaimed or vacant land, a requirement for validating one’s title, synonymous with seat.

Tobacco Note:  a certificate obtained from a tobacco inspector certifying that an individual had available a certain number of hogsheads of saleable tobacco. Tobacco notes were used as a medium of exchange, much like currency.

Vestry:  A small committee of elected church official’s who were responsible for overseeing the business of their parish.  Colonial vestries, always male, were responsible for maintaining church property, and during the early seventeenth century, for seeing that moral laws were enforced.  Vestrymen also were responsible for public welfare.

McCartney, Martha W. “Jamestown People to 1800, Landowners, Public officials, Minorities and Native Leaders,  Genealogical Publishing Company,  Maryland (2012)

My Heart For Kentucky

Breathitt County Map

From the very first conversation I ever had with my Nanny about Kentucky and the “mountain people” of my kinfolk as she called it. I have always been fascinated with the beauty and stories of Southeastern Kentucky.

I guess knowing that I had such a huge family of earlier settlers in that area, brings the local area to a special place in my heart. The small counties of Breathitt, Jackson, Leslie, Clay and surrounding area’s are filled with the stories of the  Bolling//Bowling, Spicer’s, Bakers, Amis, Cornett, Sizemore, Pennington and many, many more surnames.

I am reading an amazing book now, written by Jess Wilson. “When They Hanged the Fiddler”. I thought when I bought it that it was merely the story of one of my ancestors, Isaac Callahan who was hung for the murder of David Newberry in 1817. The book is full of stories from local folks in the surrounding area’s and towns of Kentucky.

I find myself researching in this area a lot. I love maps, data, census records and especially photos of both people and places.


Excellant Websites for Your Research

Here are a few of my favorite websites that I have used during my research.
Clay County Genealogical Society
Kentucky Old Cooking Facebook Group
Technology for Genealogy
The Mayflower Societies
Francis Cooke Society (PilCumgrim)
Pilgrim Hall Museum
Orleans Indiana Facebook Group- If you Grew Up In Orleans
Cumberland Gap Genetic  Genealogy Facebook Group
Melungeons Facebook Group
Bolling, Bowling Facebook Group
TriState Genealogy Group Ohio-Indiana-KY- Facebook
Pennsylvania Genealogy- Facebook
Genealogy and Newspapers- Facebook
Southeastern Ky History, Genealogy and Cemeteries- Facebook
The Clay County Genealogical and Historical Society- facebook
Wilkes Genealogical Society (official) facebook (North Carolina)
Breathitt Memories- Facebook Kentucky group
Jackson County Ky Facebook group
Melungeons Unite Facebook group
Kentucky Genealogy Network Facebook
Tall Tales and Folklore’s of Kentucky’s History
Families from Breathitt County Ky Facebook
Clay County  History and Genealogy
Breathitt County History
Owsley County Ky Genealogy Facebook
Descendants of the LongHunters Facebook
Melungeon and Proud of It Facebook Group
Cortland Cemetary Ky Facebook
Pike County Ky History Facebook
East Ky facts, Legends Facebook
Lineage Society of America  Facebook
Ohio History and Genealogy Facebook
Southeast Kentucky Genealogy
North Carolina Genealogy
The Mayflower Society facebook
Newspapers- The Ancestor Hunt website
Jackson County Ky Rootsweb Website
Rootsweb Resource Page
Chronicling  America Newspapers Website
Cincinnati Ohio Museum Center
Library of Congress
The Great Migration- Pilgrims
American Ancestors
Newspaper Abstracts
The Olden Times Newspapers
Kindred Trails
Access Genealogy- Free Site
Genealogy Today- Google for Ancestry
National Archives
Us Genweb
World Genweb
Family History Daily
Find A Grave
 Cyndi’s List- Resource
Family Tree Maker Magazine
Fold 3- Newspapers
Bureau of Land Management
Digital Public Library of America
Steven Morse- many sites ( Ellis Island)
State Websites-Individual states
Census Tools
Williamsburg Library Genealogy
Library of Virginia
Family Search- death certificate
Moutain Laurel
Old Cade Coves-Kentucky pictures
Appalachian Mixed Blood-Melungeon Blog
Melungeon s Blog-Hancock Tenn
Bowling, Bolling Website at Blogger-Original
Colonial Records of North Carolina
United States Marriage Records-Definitions
The Cumberland Gap Blog
The History Channel
Kentucky Library
Kentucky~ Kindred Trails
Kentucky Dept of Library e Archives

Robert Bolling and Jane Rothe

Robert Bolling and Jane Rolfe
( Please note, story is written with some grammatical errors to keep the authenticity of the article.)

Robert Bolling (b. 1646) of All Hollows, Barkin Parish, London, arrived in Virginia in 1660 or 1661 at the age of 14.27 Although details are sketchy, Bolling apparently prospered through trade and land speculation. In 1675, he married Jane Rolfe, the only child of Thomas and Jane Rolfe of Surry County. The couple made their home at Kippax Plantation in what was then Charles City County. The property was likely purchased by Bolling in the last quarter of the 17th century.

After a year of marriage, Jane Rolfe Bolling gave birth to her only child John in 1676. Although few facts are available on the death of Jane in 1676, it is likely that she died of complications from childbirth. Jane Rolfe Bolling is reputed to be buried on the Kippax Plantation property along with her father Thomas.

Robert Bolling was a successful merchant and had an active public life. He was elected to the House of Burgesses in 1688, and as a vestryman of Bristol Parish. By the beginning of the 18th century, his property holdings had increased almost fivefold; at the time of his death in 1709, his property totaled nearly 4,000 acres. Bolling’s lands were well situated to take advantage of Native-American trade patterns. These properties were relatively close to the well-established trading paths that extended in a southwesterly direction from the falls of the Appomattox River. His 500-acre tract in Henrico County was, in the 17th century, still part of the frontier. His extensive landholdings across the river in Prince George County were even better located. The family seat of Kippax bordered on Francis Eppes’s Great Patent and lay between his estate, Bermuda Hundred, and Fort Henry on the Appomattox. Colonel Francis Eppes (1628-1678) ran a store at Bermuda Hundred and imported trade goods from London merchants. He sold them to colonists and independent “selfe-ended traders” who in turn sold the goods to the Native Americans.”

Robert Bolling’s involvement in trade with Native Americans is confirmed by an entry in the diary of William Byrd II. On February 26, 1709, Byrd noted that “a man from North Carolina came to him [Bolling] to buy Indian goods but because he had no pay he [Bolling] let him have none.”

Walter Chiles, a merchant who in 1641 secured permission to venture southwest of the Appomattox River and engage in trade with Native Americans, also owned land in the general vicinity of Bolling’s Kippax Plantation.” For some family members, trading served as their primary source of income. For instance, Robert Bolling’s son John, who lived at nearby Cobbs Plantation, received all the profits of an immense trade with his countrymen and one even still greater with the Indians.


Linebaugh, Donald W. Kippax  Plantation: Traders, Merchants, and Planters. An Exhibit Celebrating the Families of Pocahontas.Center for Archaeological Research, the College of William and Mary, Historic Hopewell Foundation, Inc. The City of Hopewell (1995).


Getting To Know Your Family

Call me a genealogy nerd, but research to me is so much more complex than just a simple vital search on an ancestor. Far beyond the birth, marriage, and death dates remains a person, a family member, that once lived a few years back. This person held the key to so much of your families being; genes, characteristics, personality, traits, and so much more that just your DNA. With them, a host of answer’s to the questions that you have today, both good and bad. Why do I look the way I do? What family gene’s do I have that could cause life debilitating diseases? Where did my temperament come from? What doors has this person opened for my family? All these simple questions, and so much more!

When I first started my research on my paternal side, I was looking for names and dates of great grandparents, and their surrounding family. I was literally shocked to realize how far I was able to trace back my lineage, and even more surprised as to the locations in which my family had arrived from. I never thought in a million years, that I would discover and find so many answers to the questions about my paternal side. From the smallest question as to Where did I get these ears from?  There were much more significant answers that I received, such as, Why did my paternal side of the male family drink so much? I even received an answer to a surprising question, as to why am I slowly losing some of my hearing now? Well, come to find out, my paternal side had known Hearing defects in our generations past. A few family members even opened up world renowned Schools for the Hearing Impaired.

Researching my family members has created a sense of loyalty, and established in some sense a relationship or connection with them. There have been surprises, interesting facts, and disappointments along the way. I have discovered that sometimes you create a person in the image that you expect them to be, and often times, with further research back, you discover facts about them that can be somewhat disappointing. For example, while doing research I discovered that my great, great, great grandparents were married a very long time, and had many children together. I discovered that although they were together, the ggg grandfather also had a whole separate family in the same town! The perception that I had created in my mind, was not based on the genealogical facts that I discovered.

To take my research to another level, I like to analyze the socio-economics of the area that they lived in. What was the time frame in regards to world historical events? Was there something sufficient going on that would effect their standards of living? The  Depression era, disease epidemics, local and federal politics? All surrounding facts that could help create the culture of that particular time.

One last thing, take the time to study and analyze the vital records of your ancestor. You will be able to determine a lot about the person they were by studying birth, marriage, and especially death certificates. Census records hold so many unknown facts about the family as a whole: location of where they lived, their profession, education, social status, people they associated with and so much more!

I encourage you to get to know your family members better, research with open eyes, an open heart, and you will be surprised at all the interesting facts that you discover.

Bowlings of Southeast Kentucky including Clay, Jackson, Breathitt and surrounding areas.

We are descendants of the early Bollings/ Bowlings (along with misc. spellings) of Virginia and Kentucky.

Benjamin Bolling was born June 30, 1734 and died January 10,1832 in Flat Gap, Wise County, Virginia. He married Patty Phelps on June 20,1753 in Albermarle County, Virginia. Patty was born in 1736 in Albermarle County. Patty died on March 8, 1767 during childbirth with her daughter Elizabeth, in Rowan County, North Carolina. Benjamin later married Charity Larimore in 1768. Charity was born in 1734, and died in Flat Gap Wise County, Virginia. She is buried along side of Benjamin Bolling.

Rev. Jessie Bowling was born on May 22, 1758 in Orange, Hillsboro, North Carolina and died March 10,1841 in Quicksand Creek, Breathitt County Kentucky. He married first Polly Green, in 1776 in Wilkes County , Va. and she died just two years later, they had no children. He later married Mary Elizabeth Pennington on January 6, 1785 in Wilkes County North Carolina. She is the daughter of Micager Pennington and Nancy Jones. Mary was born on November 18,1765 in Grayson County, Va and died March 21, 1843 in Qucksand Creek, Breathitt County Kentucky. Together Jessie and Mary had 11 children.

Elijah “Lige” Bowling, son of Rev. Jessie Bowling was born on January 22, 1798 in Lee County, Va. and died on October 20, 1883 in Laurel County, KY. Lige married Susannah “Sookie” Roberts on March 18, 1819 in Clay County, Ky. Sookie was the daughter of Jesse Roberts and Nancy Anderson. She was born 1800 in Va.

Jesse Boyd Bowling, the son of  Elijah Bowling  and Susan Baker Born in 1830 had a son Jason Walker Baker Bowling, who was born on July 15, 1848 and died on February 25, 1911 in Fogertown, Clay County, Ky. Oral history in our family says that Jesse and Susan were not married when Jason, (some spellings are Jacient) was born. Susan’s father took the baby and told  Jesse that he better do right by the baby and so he then later married Susan and they raised Jason together.

Susan Baker was born on 2 Jun 1830 in Buffalo, Owsley Co, KY and died on 18 Apr 1867 in Homeplace On Burton Fork Of Long’s Creek, Breathitt Co, KY at age 36.

General Notes:  Before Susan married ‘Preacher’ Bob Burton, she had a first child born out of wedlock. His father was Jesse B Bowling. The child was named Jason Baker and was on 1 census of Owsley County. John Hammond Baker, Susan’s father, took Jason to Nicholasville, Ky and adopted him to his father at the age of 1 month old. See court document, Nicholasville, KY. Jason was renamed Jason Walker Bowling. (See John J Dickey Diaries). Jason became a United States Federal Marshall. He married Kettie Bowling.

Susan married Jesse B Bowling, son of Elijah ‘Lige’ Bowling and Susannah Roberts, in Owsley Co, KY. Jesse was born on 14 Jan 1822 in Perry Co, Ky, died on 14 Sep 1878 in Laurel Co, KY at age 56, and was buried in Bowling Cemetery, Laurel Co, KY.

Jason Walker Bowling was the father to my great grandfather Albert Sidney Bowling. Jason married Kettie Bowling, daughter of Christopher Bowling and Elizabeth Cornett. She was born on January 5, 1854 and died June 11, 1916.  I have notes that say that Jason later married a Hampton, but I am still looking into that, for Kettie died five years after Jason.

Albert Sidney Bowling married Callie Bell Spicer, who was the daughter of Anderson R. Bowling, “Big Ance” and Nancy E. Baker. They were not married when Callie was born on March 15, 1878 and died on June 20, 1921. According to the 1880 federal census, Callie’s mother Nancy was married to Sutton Moore, and on the census Sutton, aka as Elijah, was listed as her father. Nancy married Big Ance a few years later, and had a few more children. Anderson was married to a Hacker, and the oral history of their family states that Anderson had two boys with Ms. Hacker, and he took the boys and she never saw them again. Albert died on December 13, 1922 of pulmonary Tuberculosis. Callie had preceded him by six months, it is unknown to me how Callie died, for I am still trying to locate her death certificate.

Albert and Callie were cousins, Elijah Bowling had two sons, Jesse who was on the paternal side and Delaney who was on the maternal side. Jesse and Delaney were brothers.

Albert’s parents had 9 children, Margaret, Eliza, John, Lucinda, Albert, Jesse, Amanda,Taylor and Chester. I have notes that lead me to believe that Chester may be the son of the Ms. Hampton  and Jason Walker Bowling, mentioned earlier. Kettie  had her children ranged from 1873 to 1885, and Chester was born in 1896 making that an eleven year span between the last two.

Albert and Callie Bowling had 5 children, Earl, Thomas, Maude, Nancy  and Wilson Pershing Bowling. Wilson the baby was born in 1919, and was the baby of the family. When Callie got sick, and died; Albert only survived for six months afterwards. I was told that the children were split up, and Wilson “Wick”, my grandfather was sent to an orphanage in Ohio, where his sister Maude worked. Maud died at the age of 27 years old from TB as well, like her father. So I am only assuming that Callie died from it as well.