1868 Mattaponi Indian Tribe Membership Roll and Petition to Governor

This petition from the Mattaponi Indian Tribe of King William County, VA to the Governor of Virginia is found in the Magazine of Virginia Genealogy, Vol 36 #4, and begins on page 257.

The petition challenged an attempt by Thornton Allmond to close an access road to the reservation. Allmond, an interesting and pivotal character in the history of the Mattaponi tribe, was born in Gloucester County, Virginia, in 1812 and may have been the son of Miles Allmond. He first appeared in Gloucester personal property tax lists for ‘free negros and mulattos” in 1833 and 1834, where he was described as having no occupation and residing at or near Guinea.

In 1835 the Gloucester list shows him living in King William County. Although no King William marriage records from the 1830s survive, marriage records for his children4 list his wife as Eliza Major. Thornton and Eliza were probably married at about the time of his removal from Gloucester since the 1850 census of King William County gives the age of his oldest child as fourteen.

Thornton Allmond made his will in December 1878 and was dead by the end of February 1879. Because of a mistake in his will, which does not survive in the King William records, an agreement was recorded between his widow, children, and their spouses. From this and the Bureau of Vital Statistics marriage register we know that most of his children married into the Mattaponi and Pamunkey tribes.

Mattaponi Tribe of Indians Complaint to Governor 8 May 1868

Elston Major Chief of Tribe of Mattaponi Indians complains that Sterling Thornton (white) and Thornton Almond owners of land (Clifton) thru which a road leading from Indian Town to the Main road leading from King William CH to Frazers Ferry (across Mattaponi) are seeking to deprive them of use of said road, which has been open for a great period of time.

Ellick King owned all of this and sold it to Mr. Drew[?] who put gates across the road. The County Court of King William ordered the gates to be removed, say 15 years ago. Thornton claims that this road from Indian Town to Main road belongs to him. The Indians ask that the Governor will protect them in their rights.

A List of Chiefs, Headmen and members of the Mattaponi Indian Tribe situate in the County of King William and State of Virginia

April 1868

Ellston Major

Austin Key
Robert Toopence

Members of Tribe

Franklin, Nancy

Key, Claiborne
Key, Austin
Key, Jno Anderson

Major, Henry
Major, Ellston
Major, Lee Franklin
Major, Coley
Major, Mary
Major, Parkey
Major, John

Toopence, Park Farley
Toopence, Elizabeth
Toopence, Robert
Toopence, Emeline
Toopence, Laura
Toopence, Mary Catherine
Toopence, James C.
Toopence, Lucy J

The above is a list of Chiefs, Headmen, & members of the Mattaponi Indian Tribe.  Hardin Littlepage, William J. Rimmer, Trustees for said Indian tribe.

April 18’h 1868

In June 1866 I was appointed surveyor of a Road leading to the Mattaponi IndianTribe through Clifton & the Tribe assigned to me as hands to work upon this Road.

First I summoned them as usual & appeared on the road to work was stopped bythe owner of the land through which the road passes since then both myself andElstan Major who is the Head man of the tribe have applied to the authorities ofthis county & can get no clemancy [sic] whatever. And still the tribe are withouta road of their own & are required to work on the public road

D. Robinson
(One of the Trustees)
Mattaponi Tribe

Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth
Richmond, Va.
April 23rd 1868
To the Commonwealth’s Atty
for King William County

Dr Sir:

Elston Major Chief of the Mattaponi Indian Tribe has made complaint to the Governor that the said tribe are obstructed in the use of the road (in your County which passes through a farm called Clifton now owned by Sterling Thornton and Thornton Almond, and which they claim to be a public road) leading from Indian Town to the main road between King Wm C.H. and Frazer’s ferry, which they have enjoyed from time immemorial and which affords the only mode of exit from town.

Jn Herndon, Secy C

Posted in Mattapony | Leave a comment

Indians in 1801-1804 Cherokee Agency Pass Book

In the now digitized editions of “Answerin’ News”, an early portion of the Cherokee Agency Pass Book has been transcribed. This portion covers from July 1801 to October 28, 1804 at Southwest Point, now Kingston, Tennessee. If you wanted to travel through or trade in Cherokee Country, you had to obtain a pass. In these records are found a few Indian and Indian trader names, as follows:

  • Wm. Green Wood (Indian)
  • David Roe (Indian)
  • Return Jonathan Meigs (Indian Agent)
  • Timothy Meigs (Indian Agent’s son)


Given that Cherokees would not have needed to have a pass, these Indian men must have been from another tribe.

Hat tip to Martha for sending this information.

Posted in Cherokee | 6 Comments

Hyde County, NC Indian Families in 1850

A friend was looking through the Hyde County, NC, 1850 census and noticed something quite interesting.

On page 4 (at Ancestry.com) of the Currituck district, one entire page (except one person) is shown with M, for mulatto, overwritten over something else. That something else looks to be an F or an I.

I’ve put the three pages in sequence below. Only people with an M or B have a designation, so no designation appears to equal white, judging from the rest of the Hyde County census.

Note that the only options for the census takers relative to race are white, black or mulatto. Indian wasn’t added until 1870, so in 1850, there is no Indian designation.  The 1850 census instructions do not tell the enumerator how to determine which of those 3 categories a person falls into, so it was up to the enumerator or their assistant to make that determination.  Given that the enumerators lived in the county, they probably knew these families and “knew” who was mixed and who was not.  In essence, if you weren’t entirely white, and you weren’t entirely black,  you were mulatto.

On the bottom of the first page, below, the beginning of the family entry that continues onto the overstrike page is shown. This family head and his wife, John and Mary Berry are not shown with any designation, and neither is Elizabeth, so presumably white.

Hyde previous page

The family continues onto the next page, which is the full page shown below. On this page, every single individual except for one child, Henrietta Collins, had something written in the race column which looks to be an I or an F, and was subsequently overstricken.

My first thought was that they accidentally wrote F, for female in the wrong column, except many of the enumerants are males, so that doesn’t fly either.

Furthermore, it looks like Samuel Barber, living in the same house with John Berry, is listed as M, one of those people whose status of possible I, for Indian, an invalid entry, was overwritten or “corrected” to an allowable designation.

Hyde Indian

Here’s a better look.

Hyde Indian closeup

The Barrow or Banow family is being enumerated at the end of the page above, and on the following page, the family grouping now continues with child Malsey Berry, age 10, with no race designation.

Hyde page after

Frankly, this doesn’t make a lot of sense unless there are pages missing, and working the various original page numbers, while a bit confusing at first, doesn’t show any relevant pages to be missing.  What we can’t know is when the pages were numbered, or if the census was taken in household order.  In other words, the pages could have been numbered later and the census taken could have enumerated in whatever order struck his fancy or was convenient that day.

I checked each page individually, and sure enough, there was a second page in this district with families with their race over stricken to mulatto.  These families were also known to be of Mattamuskeet origin.  The Mackey and Longtom families are both reflected in the Mattamuskeet reservation land sales between 1737 and 1792 as Indians.

In fact, this page begins with Ann Banow which is the same surname ending the previous page with the overstrikes.

Hyde Indian 2 crop

If these census pages actually do show Indian people, reclassified as mulattoe, as is suggested by the overwriting and the full word mulatto written out at the top of both pages, then this suggests that all of these families have Native heritage, whether full or partial by intermarriage, in 1850.

What do we know about the various families listed? Previous research has shown the following about the various surnames listed.

  • Barber

John Durant, King, John Barber, John Hawkins, Harry Gibbs, George Durant, great men of the Yawpims came before this Board an acknowledged a sale of Land for six hundred and fforty Acres to the Honoble William Reed Esq’ part of a great Tract laid out to them by the Government and that they were Satisfyed for the same and this Boai’d being asked wither they consented to the said sale gave their opinion in the affirmative. [Colonial Records of NC, 1723, p 483]

In 1712, a peace treaty between the Tuscarora Indians and the State of North Carolina, is signed by Tom Blount, 4 other Indian men who do not have English names, and a 6th Indian transcribed as “Saroonha for Hernt Focker, absent.” It states that Blount’s segment of the Tuscarora who attempted to remain neutral will make war against those who attacked the colonists.  Those groups include the Catatkpncy, Cores, Nuse, Bare River, Pamplico and Matchepungo Indians.  It also states, among things, that they will “endeavor to bring in some of their towns alive,” then provides a list of Native names, some followed by English names as well that they are “called” by.  The English names are John Pagett, Lawson, Barber, Henry Lysle, Square Hooks and Young Tyler.  [Craven County NC, It’s Origin and Beginning by Dr. Charles R. Holloman]

  • Garner
  • Reed

Reed is found among the PeeDee and the Tuscarora.


Served in the Revolutionary War in New York:

This book notes that 50 Tuscarora warriors went to Valley Forge with the Americans, and with them went Augur, Daniel and Jacob Reed. The book does not specifically say these men are Native, but this sentence and the context certainly imply that they are.

Forgotten Patriots: African American and American Indian Patriots in the Revolutionary War

  • King

“Jno King an Indian” complained to the governor’s council in 1695 that his people were “denyed their liberty of Hunting to which they pretent title by former agreement.” The Council ruled in his favor, saying “the Indians have liberty to hunt on all wasteland that is not taken up…” Tribal affiliation not listed for King, but was apparently a leader of one of the tributary Algonquian nations of the Albemarle region, including Chowanoke, Yeopim, Hatteras, etc.

Michelle LeMaster, “In the Scolding Houses”,” Indians and the Law in Eastern North Carolina, 1684-1760,” in The North Carolina Historical Review LXXXIII, no. 2, April 2006.

Request for satisfaction of losses (5 pounds) caused by Tom King of the Wotton Ind. made by Nicholas DAWE. No date. Request directed to Robert DANIELL, landgrave.

Commentary: This appears to be about 1703.


Woccon is an early name for Ocracoke Island. On Hatteras Island, at Indian Town, we find Tom King’s Creek mentioned in several deeds, the first in 1716.

Patent Book 8, pat 2692, p 113 John O’neall Oct 9 1716  440 ac at Cape Hatterass joining ye mouth and side of Tom King Creek, the sound, and ye woods.  Wit Charles Eden, N. Chevin, C. Gale, Fra. Foster, T. Knight

In 1756, the Hatteras Indians were involved with a court action regarding their land, where it became evident that while they had always lived there, they didn’t have a patent or land grant, and the Europeans were not recognizing their ownership. They remedied that by requesting a land grant, which was given in 1759 and bordered King’s Creek.

Colony of NC 1735-1764 Abstracts of Land Patents, Volume One – B by Margaret M. Hofmann

Page 382, pat 5398, page 268, book 15, William Elks and the rest of the Hatteras Indians March 6 1759, 200 ac in Currituck including the old Indian Town, joining the sound side, the mouth of King’s Creek and Joseph Mashue.


  • Freeman

In 1733, John Freeman, a Chowan Indian, signs a land deed. In 1774 Freeman is found in Bladen, some free persons of color and some white.  In 1802, they are near the Waccamaw.  They are found among the Lumbee.  [Estes, Families of Interest Index]

John Freeman, a white man, possibly married Chowan chief, Thomas Hoyter’s daughter, Tabitha.


Additional information about the Freeman family is available here:


This Freeman line has been proven Native through Y DNA testing, haplogroup Q.

The Colonial Records of North Carolina, Second Series, Volume VII entitled “Records of the Executive Council,” on page 416, has a deposition given by Richard Booth in which he states that in the year 1667 he took a canoe with trade goods to the Meherrin Indian Town down the Blackwater River. On his right the Weyanoake River joined in about 13 miles north of the Meherrin River. Accompanying him on this journey was “a Certain Weyanoake Indian Called Tom Freeman.”

Weyanoke Indian Tom Freeman by Fletcher Freeman

Weyanoake Indian Tom Freeman

Freeman first appears in Bladen Co. NC with Abraham, Samuel and William, all of mixt blood on a tax list in 1774. In 1775, Abraham was a free person of color, possibly black and in 1776 Roger Freeman appeared in a tax list of Bladen with a family of 8.  Benjamin and William Freeman, white, in Barnes district of S Robeson Co. NC in 1776.  Abram and James Freeman of current Bladen signed a petition regarding road work around the Waccamaw in 1802.  1850 Robeson census gives all as white and dates back to before 1790 in the area.  Self identified as Indian in the 1900 Robeson census and on the 1900 Indian census schedule.  Death records show name as Indian in 1919 and 1940 in Alfordsville, Fairmont and Thompson Twp.

Implosion, the Secret History of the Origins of the Lumbee Indians by Morris Britt

  • Tyson
  • Chance

Found among the Cherokee in WWI draft registrations.

  • Collins

Source: Hyde Co., NC Court Minutes 1757-1788; Book III by Weynette Parks Haun

Page 55 (Item #111)  March Court 1765 – On motion Patrick Gordan ordered that William Gibbs be summoned to next court to shew cause if any he has why Cate Collings an Indian woman now in his service should not be set free.

Page 58 (Item 117) June Court 1765 – Ordered that William Gibbs have timely notis [sic] that he shew cause why Cate Collins an Indian woman be not set at liberty.

  • Good
  • Barrow
  • Banow?
  • Hill

Tuscarora People as Identified by Land and Other Transactions by Roberta Estes (2012) – Individuals from North Carolina primarily, some from New York.

First Last (or one name only) Year Comment
John Hill 1777

Tuscarora People as Identified by Land and Other Transactions by Roberta Estes (2012) – Individuals from North Carolina primarily, some from New York.

First Last (or one name only) Year Comment
James Rice or Hill 1777

Found among the Tuscarora in the Indian census in the 1880s and 1890s.

Indian surnames enumerated in the 1888-1892 New York Indian census from original National Archives documents indexed at http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=1059

  • Clagton
  • Braddock
  • Davis
  • Mackay/Mackey

In 1715, at the close of the Tuscarora War, defeated, the Mattamuskeet were given permission to settle at Lake Mattamuskeet in current Hyde Co., NC. In 1724 King Squired and King Mackey requested that the land be surveyed, but in 1727, when the reservation land was finally granted, it still had not been done.  In 1715, the Mattamuskeet and the Coree, traditional enemies settled on the reservation.  The Tuscarora were living there as well until 1722 when they received their own reservation. The Coree, traditionally allied with the Tuscarora, likely went with them to Indian Woods in Bertie County.  In 1731, there we only 20 families at Lake Mattamuskeet and in 1755, only 8 to 10.  The Mattamuskeet who appear in deeds and records between 1721 and 1792 are as follows, with the first year they appeared in a record following their name.  King Squires (1721), King Mackey (1721), John Squires (1731), John Mackey (1731), Long Tom (1731), Charles Eden (1739), Charles Squires (1740), son of John Squires per a 1746 deed that says “by order of his father John Squires, George Squires, 1746, son of John Squires  per a 1760 deed, Joseph Russell 1747, Joshua Squires, 1752, Timothy Squires, 1752, James Tom, 1760, Jemina Squires, 1762, Jean Longtom, 1792, Martha Longtom, 1792, John Longtom, 1792, Patience McKey (Mackey), 1792 and Tabitha Timothy, 1792.  The 1792 deed held no names or prior signers.  There had been 30 years between the 1792 deed and the previous deed signed in 1762.  [Estes, Mattamuskeet Unraveled]

  • Longtom

See Mackey, above.

  • Powers

Hat tip to Justin for finding the Hyde County overstricken census records and thanks for passing the information along.

Posted in Algonquian, Bare River Indians, Bay River Indians, Catatkpncy, Cherokee, Chowan, Coree, DNA, Hatteras, Lumbee, Machapunga, Mattamuskeet, Meherrin, North Carolina, Pamplico, Peedee, Reservation, Tuscarora, Waccamaw, Weyanoke, Woccon, Wynganditoian, Yawpim, Yeopim | 10 Comments

1762 Indian Wars – John Martin Family Captured

The “History of the Church of the Brethren” tells us the following about a massacre and kidnapping of white settlers in 1762 in Great Cove in the Juniata Valley of Pennsylvania, by King Beaver and Capt. Shingas, who personally led the raids.

1762 Indian Wars

You can read more about the John Martin family here and here.

Posted in Delaware, Military, Pennsylvania, Shawnee, Tuscarora | 2 Comments

Jackson Purchase Negotiations with the Chickasaws

This was one of several articles found in an old scrapbook in the 1980s in the library at Tazewell, TN. I copied the entire scrapbook given that I realized many of the articles are of historical significance and the local newspaper office burned in 1923, so there were no archived issues of the newspaper.  While this article does not pertain to local residents, it does describe little known details of the negotiations of Andrew Jackson, Governor Shelby of Kentucky (who challenged Jackson to a duel) and the Chickasaw Indians.

This article describes the details of the 1818 negotiations for the purchase of what came to be known at the Jackson Purchase, in essence the western eight counties of Kentucky in an area bounded by the Ohio River on the north, the Mississippi on the west and the Tennessee on the east.

Jackson purchase

Posted in Chickasaw, Treaty | Leave a comment

Horse Shoe Jim, an Indian Chief, Claiborne County, Tennessee

During a visit to Claiborne County, TN is the 1980s, I happened across a scrapbook that had been contributed to the library. Inside the scrapbook were old clippings from the Claiborne Progress Newspaper that related to the residents and includes a group of historical articles.  I copied the entire scrapbook, although many of the articles were not in good shape.  I’ve found this treasure trove again recently as I was cleaning out some files, and have been transcribing the articles to preserve them.  Unknown to me at that time, the Claiborne Progress burned in 1923, so there are no archived newspapers.  Judging from surrounding articles, this article was probably from 1912-1916.

A Pioneer Home Goes Up in Smoke

“Holly Hill” or the Patterson home burned last Saturday night and was destroyed. The fire was discovered by 8 o’clock and flames when first seen were coming from the dining hall roof.  The fire had been in the ?? since the dinner hour.  How the fire originated will never be known but supposition that the match and the rat is responsible.  Insurance to the amount of $25,000 was carried on the building and furniture.  Comparatively nothing was saved.

The old Patterson home was situationed three ?? (probably miles) from the Gap. The brick portion was built by Elisha Walden in the early part of the last century and owned by his son John Walden until 1836 when it was purchased by Frances Patterson and his son James M. Paterson and has been in the hands of the family every since.

Probably no old home in this county has more interesting historical association connections with it. (missing)  Patterson home was never a hotel, it is safe to say that thousands of travelers, stock ?? and soldiers have slept under its roof (missing)

Almost under the ruins their lies the bones of a confederate soldier whose grave was covered with white roses, peonies, scarlet and yellow tulips. A little farther away is the grave of Horse Shoe Jim, an Indian Chief killed in an Indian attack and buried by Walden and his slaves.  On the State Road near the ruins is a grave marked on a crude tombstone “William Robinson, killed by Indians in 1786”.  The Indians had stolen Robinson’s horses in Virginia and he with others had followed them to their Indian village.  He became separated from his friends and was shot from a cane brake.  He wrote his on an oak tree with his own blood.  When found he was buried on the spot.

Roberta’s note: Elisha Walden is also known as Elisha Wallen.  Patterson Crossroads today is just east of the intersection of highways 63 and 25E. The “State Road” is now highway 25E.

Robinson was killed at Butcher Springs, just north of Arthur and you can see pictures of this area in my article about Lazarus Dodson who later owned this land.

On the map below, Butcher Springs is marked with the red balloon and you can see Patterson Crossroads in the upper right corner.

butcher springs

If this history is correct and Robinson did follow the Indians to their village, this tells is that the location of Butcher Springs, which is an excellent headwater on a flat area would have been the location at one time of an Indian village.

Butcher springs satellite

This overview shows Butcher Springs, Patterson Crossroads just east of 63 and 25E and Cumberland Gap at the top.

Cumberland overview

Elisha Wallen, the longhunter, died in 1814 in Missouri, at 84 years of age.  He began longhunting in the area that would become Claiborne County, TN in 1761.  However, the nephew of the longhunter Elisha Wallen, also named Elisha Wallen, lived in Claiborne County, served in the Revolutionary War and testified after 1814 and prior to 1841 as to the service of Alexander Ritchie.  You can read more about Elisha Wallen and Indian attacks in the 1770s and 1780s here.

Posted in Tennessee | 1 Comment

Further Analysis of Native American DNA Haplogroup C Planned

Haplogroup C is one of two Native American male haplogroups. More specifically, one specific branch of the haplogroup C tree is Native American which is defined by mutation C-P39 (formerly known as C3b).  Ray Banks shows this branch (highlighted in yellow) along with sub-branches underneath on his tree:

C-P39 Ray Banks Tree

Please note that if you are designated at 23andMe as Y haplogroup C3e, you are probably C-P39. We encourage you to purchase the Y DNA 111 marker test at Family Tree DNA and join the haplogroup C and C-P39 projects.

It was only 11 years, ago in 2004 in the Zegura study, that C-P39 was reported among just a few Native American men in the Plains and Southwest.  Since that time The American Indian DNA project, surname projects and the AmerIndian Ancestry Out of Acadia DNA projects have accumulated samples that span the Canadian and American borders, reaching west to east, so haplogroup C-P39 is not relegated to the American Southwest.  It is, however, still exceedingly rare.

In August of 2012, Marie Rundquist, co-administrator of the haplogroup C-P39 DNA project performed an analysis and subsequent report of the relationships, both genealogical and genetic, of the C-P39 project members.  One of the burning questions is determining how far back in time the common ancestor of all of the C-P39 group members lived.


When Marie performed the first analysis, in 2012,, there were only 14 members in the project, representing 6 different families, and they had only tested to 67 markers. Most were from Canada.

C-P39 countries

My, how things have changed. We now have more participants, more markers to work with and additional tests to bring to bear on the questions of relatedness, timing and origins.

Today, there are a total of 43 people in the project and their locations include the Pacific Northwest, Appalachia, the Southwest and all across Canada, west to east.

If you are haplogroup C-P39 or C3e at 23andMe, please join the C-P39 project at Family Tree DNA today.  I wrote about how to join a project here, but if you need assistance, just let me know in a comment to the blog and Marie or I will contact you.  (Quick Instructions: sign on to your FTDNA account, click on projects tab on upper left toolbar, click on join, scroll down to Y haplogroup projects, click on C, select C-P39 project and click through to press orange join button.)

Marie is preparing to undertake a new analysis and provides the following announcement:

The C-P39 Y DNA project is pleased to announce a forthcoming updated and revised project report.  The C-P39 project has established a 111-marker baseline for our 2016 study and analysis will include:

  • 111 marker result comparisons
  • geo-locations
  • tribal / family relationships
  • C P39 SNP findings
  • new SNPs and Big Y results

The current C-P39 Y DNA study has a healthy diversity of surnames, geo-locations, and tribal / family lines represented.

The C-P39 Y DNA project will cover the costs of the necessary 111 marker upgrades by way of Family Tree DNA C-P39 Y DNA study project fund.

Thanks to all who have contributed to the project fund and to participants who have funded their own tests to 111 markers as part of our study.  To voluntarily contribute (anonymously if you like) to the C-P39 Y DNA project funds and help our project achieve this goal, please click on the link below and please do make certain that the “C-P39 Y-DNA” pre-selected project is highlighted when you do:


Thank you to project members contributing DNA test results to the C-P39 study and for encouraging friends and relatives to do the same!  Thank you also to Family Tree DNA management for their ongoing support.

The project needs to raise $3164 to upgrade all project members to 111 markers.  Many participants have already upgraded their own results, for which we are very grateful, but we need all project members at the 111 level if possible.

Please help fund this scientific project if you can.  Every little bit helps.  I’m going to start by making a donation right now!  You can make the donation in memory or in honor of someone or a particular ancestor – or you can be completely anonymous.  Please click on the link above to make your contribution!!!  We thank you and the scientific community thanks you.

Posted in Canada, Cree, DNA, Miawpukeks, Micmac | 11 Comments