GOOCHLAND COUNTY, VIRGINIA–B
William Gowan was born about 1730 of parents unknown, place unknown. He was married about 1754 to Anastasia Sullivan. On January 20, 1755 he purchased five acres from Thomas Stark, according to Goochland County Deed Book 6, page 440.
“Will: Gowan and Anna Stacia Sullivan” were the parents of Anna Stacia Gowan, “their first child,” born September 17, 1756, according to “The Douglas Register.” She was baptized March 6, 1757, according to page 50. W. Mac. Jones, editor of “The Douglas Register” described the volume as “Being a detailed record of Births, Marriages and Deaths together with other interesting notes, as kept by the Rev. William Douglas from 1750 to 1797. An Index of Goochland Wills, Notes on the French-Huguenot Refugees who lived in Manakin-Town.”
A reference to Rev. Douglas appeared in “Our Kin, the Genealogies of Some of the Early Families who Made History in the Founding and Development of Bedford County, Virginia.”
“There came to Virginia October 6, 1750, one William Douglas, Minister who was born August 3, 1708 in ye shire of Galloway, Parish of Pennington, Scotland, son of William and Grishield [McKeand] Douglas; married November 27, 1735, Nicholas Hunter, born September 1715 in Nithsdale County, Glencavin Parish, Scotland. He died December 31, 1781. Had charge of St. James Northern Parish in Goochland County, Virginia for twenty-seven years; Maniken Town [King William Parish] for nineteen years, and ministered to a charge in Buckingham County for four years. He had only one child, a daughter, Margaret [or “Peggy”] who married [first] Nicholas Merriwether; [second] Tyrril. Rev. Wm. Douglas had a brother, John [died 1761]; married Martha Herron and had five children, viz:  William,  James,  George,  Peggie,  Samuel.”
On July 18, 1757 William Going sold his five acres to Jeremiah Pack, according to Goochland County Deed Book 7, page 177.
“James Gouven” was born to “William Gouven & Honesty Sullivan” November 28, 1758 and was baptized February 18, 1759, according to page 58. They were the parents of another child [unnamed] born March 4, 1770, according to the register of Rev. Douglas. Their daughter, Nancy Goin, was born on that date.
“William Going, Anester Going, [hir mark]” and John Robinson were witnesses to a bill of sale executed May 3, 1759 by William Bramlet, Sr, according to Bedford County Deed Book 1, page 182.
It is suggested by Dr. Virginia Easley DeMarce of Arlington, Virginia in a letter written March 23, 1993 that “Anastasia Sullivan Gowan”, “Anna Stacia Sullivan Gowan,” “Honesty Sullivan Gowan,” “Anester Going,” and “Anister Goin” are all the same individual. Illiteracy and alliteration contributed to the various versions and make it impossible to ascertain that all were the same individual.
In 1767, William Gowan and “Anester” Sullivan Gowan bought “84 acres on the west side of Orrick’s Creek from Randle Woodward,” according to Bedford County Deed Book 3, page 33. In 1769, “Anester Going et ux, William Going” sold the property to William Austin, according to Deed Book 3, page 121.
“William Going” was a witness to the will of Robert Allen which was written July 27, 1770, according to “Abstracts of Bedford County, Virginia Wills, Inventories and Accounts, 1754-1787” by Joida Whitten. “William Going” and John Quarles appeared in court March 22, 1773 to prove the will of Robert Allen. June A. Smith, Foundation member of Bremerton, Washington, identifies Allen as a school teacher.
“William Going” was ordered to provide “his hands to clear stones on the road leading from Otter Creek” about 1771, according to Bedford County Court Order Book 3, page 242.
In 1777, “William Going, Randolph Woodward et al” received a deed to 550 acres on the north side of Orrick Creek” from Jeremiah Stone, according to Bedford County Deed Book 5, page 470. In the same year, he sold “300 acres on Orricks Creek, adjoining William Stone and George Wright” to Joseph Hackworth, according to Bedford County Deed Book 5, page 510.
In 1778, “William Goin” gave a deed to “100 acres on Orrick’s Creek, adjoining Hackworth, to William Millican” according to Bedford County Deed Book 6, page 63.
Bedford County taxpayers in 1782 included “Joseph Going, 1 male over 21, 1 slave; William Going, 1 male over 21 and William Going, Jr, 1 male over 21.”
“William Going, Sr, 1 white male over 21, with 2 horses and 6 cows” appeared in the 1783 tax roll of Bedford County. Also appearing on the tax roll of 1783 were “David Going, white male over 21, 1 horse, 3 cows,” Stephen Going, white male over 21, 2 horses, 4 cows” and “Daniel Going, white male over 21, 1 horse, 3 cows.”
“William Going, Sr. and William Going, Jr,” both over 21 with no slaves were recorded in Bedford County tax records of 1784.
About 1785, William Gowan made a declaration to the Bedford County Court that he had lost an Auditor’s Warrant which had belonged to Daniel Going. The bankrupt Continental Congress was not financially able to pay the Revolutionary soldiers at the end of the war and issued Auditor’s Warrants as promissory notes for future payment. The various states faced financial difficulties as well.
His declaration, recorded in Court Minutes Book 8, page 78, read:
Virginia Court Records
William Gowing came into court and made oath that he had an Auditor’s Warrant for £4:16s and some odd pence which did belong to Daniel Gowing and he lost the same. That he has not directly or indirectly received any satisfaction for the same which is ordered to be certified to the Auditors of Pub. Accts. Memo Bond given with Wm. Hand [his fee] in Pen[alty?] of £9:12:0”
On February 6, 1787, William Gowan returned to court to repeat his affidavit and to renew the bond:
“William Gowing came into court and made oath that he had an Auditor’s Warrant for £4:16s and some odd pence for the services of Daniel Gowing from the Auditor of Public Accounts bearing date of 3d Dec. 1782 and that he lost the same. That he has not directly or indirectly received any satisfaction for the same which is ordered to be certified etc . . . Memo bond given in the penalty of £9:12:0”
“Isham Going and William Going, Jr, both over 21 and owning no slaves” appeared in the 1785 tax list of Bedford County.
In the 1786 tax roll of Bedford County, “William Going, Sr, white male over 21, 2 horses, 4 cows” was recorded, along with “Daniel Going, white male over 21, 2 horses, 3 cows.”
On April 23, 1787 “William Going, 2 white males over 21, 4 horses” was recorded on the Bedford County tax rolls. On the same date, “William Going, Jr, 2 white males, 2 horses.” On May 5, 1787 “Daniel Going, 1 white male over 21, 2 horses” along with “Isham Going, one white male, 1 horse.”
“William Gowen of Bedford County” was listed as a taxpayer on “one poll,” according to “Virginia Taxpayers, 1782-1787”
In 1787, “William Going et al” gave a deed to “170 acres on Orrix Creek to Richard Dearen,” according to Bedford County Deed Book 7, page 695.
In 1787, “Annister Going and William Going, et al” gave a deed to “163 acres on Island Creek, adjoining Joseph Barrington,” to Isaac Wade, according to Bedford County Deed Book 8, page 31.
On April 29, 1788 “Joseph Gowin was assessed on “2 males over 21 and 1 horse.” On June 12, 1788, “William Gowin Jr. and Daniel Gowin” were each assessed, “1 white male.”
On March 21, 1789, “Joseph Goings” was assessed on one poll and one horse by William Pate, according to Bedford County tax records. On the same date, “William Goings, Sr. was assessed on two polls” by William Pate. On May 30, “William Gowin, Jr. was assessed on two polls by Matthew Pate. On the same date, “Daniel Gowin” was assessed on “1 poll” by Matthew Pate.
On March 22, 1790, “William Goin was assessed on 1 poll. On April 24, 1790, “William Goin, [Jr?] was assessed on 1 poll” by Matthew Pate. On July 3, “Daniel Goin” was assessed on 1 poll” by Pate.
On April 25, 1791, “Daniel Goin was assessed on 1 white poll” and “William Gowin, Jr. was assessed on 2 white polls by Matthew Pate. On July 20, 1791, “William Gowin, Jr. was assessed on one pole, and “James Gowin” was accessed on 1 white poll” by Pate.
On April 23, 1792 “William Gowin, Jr. was assessed on 2 polls,” and on May 28, 1792 “William Gowin was assessed on 2 polls” by Matthew Pate. On July 10, 1792 “Isham Gowin, Daniel Gowin and James Gowin” were each assessed on 1 poll” by Matthew Pate.
On March 18, 1793 “William Gowin, 2 polls; May 28, Daniel Gowin, 1 poll; May 28 Isham Gowin, 1 poll and July 29 William Gowin, Jr, 2 polls.”
On March 28, 1794, “William Gowing, 1 poll; May 26, William Gowing, Sr, 1 poll; June 20, Daniel Gowing, 1 poll and June 20, Isham Gowing, 1 poll” were assessed by Matthew Pate.
In 1794, “Anister Goan et al” gave a deed to 150 acres on Orricks Creek and Moses Run” to Henry Adams, according to Bedford County Deed Book 9, page 334.
“William Goin” gave his consent for the marriage of his daughter “Nancy Goin” to Henry Vanover August 28, 1795, according to “Marriage Bonds of Bedford County, 1755-1800” by Earle S. Dennis. Later in the same year, “William Gowing, father of Betsey Gowing,” consented to her marriage to “John Gower,” according to the Dennis volume. In another document concerning the marriage, Isham Gowen, believed to be her brother, was surety for the marriage of “Elizabeth Gowing to John Gowen,” December 22, 1795.
In 1796, “William Goan, Isaac Wade et al” received 100 acres “at the mouth of the north fork of Island Creek,” according to Bedford County Deed Book 10, page 149. In the same year, “William Goan” sold “50 acres on Island Creek, adjoining John Wigginton” to Thomas Mayo, according to Deed k 10, page 175.
In 1798, “William Going, Sr.” gave a deed to Jeremiah Hilton to “33 3/4 acres on Island Creek, adjoining Isaac Wade,” according to Bedford County Deed Book 10, page 478.
William Gowan and some of his sons went to Kentucky about 1800, perhaps to build some accommodations prior to removal there. Later the whole family appeared in Madison County, Kentucky.
“William Goin” appeared on the 1799 tax list of Madison County. His listing showed “one male above 21 and one male from 16 to 21, three horses and no land.”
William Going appeared in the tax records of Madison County August 12, 1800, according to the research of Christine S. Agee of Richmond, Kentucky, county seat of Madison County. He was shown as “one male above 21, three horses and no land.” In the tax list of 1801 he was recorded as “one male above 21, four horses and no land.”
On May 3, 1802 the Madison County Court appointed “William Gowan” “to survey the road in the room of Susey Conson and that he with the same tithes do open and keep road in good repair according to law.” This “William Gowan” is not regarded as the elder William Gowan who was somewhat incapacitated at that time.
On July 4, 1803, he was exempted from paying tax “because of infirmities and old age,” according to Madison County Court Order Book, Volume C. He was shown as “one male, three horses and no land. In the 1805 tax list “William Goens” was recorded along with “Jeremiah Goens,” “Micajah Goens,” “Manoah Goens,” and “Joseph Goens.”
From 1800 to 1811 various members of the family appeared on Madison County tax lists. Included were William Going, Jeremiah Going, Micajah Going, Manoah Going, Francis Going and Joseph Going.
Aaron Going, son of William Going was bound out to learn a trade” December 2, 1805, according to Madison County Deed Book F.
In 1806 “William Gowin” was on the Muddy Creek township tax list “with no land.” In March 1806, he gave consent for his granddaughter, “Rebecca Gowing” to marry William Goin.” They were married March 8, 1806, Witnesses were “James Goin” and Henry Vanover. “William Gowing” was married March 9, 1806 to “Rebecca Gowing,” according to “Madison County, Kentucky Marriages, 1724-1843.”
It is believed that William Gowan died shortly afterward.
“Annaster Goan, widow” sent her consent for the Madison County Clerk to issue a marriage license to “Thomas Sanders and my daughter, Sally Goan” on January 22, 1808. Her consent form was witnessed by “Joseph [X] Goan” and “Francis [X] Goan.”
“Anester Going” appeared as the head of a household in the 1810 census of Madison County, according to Christine S. Agee. The family was rendered as:
“Going, Anester white female over 45
white female 26-45
white male 16-26
white female 10-16
white male 0-10”
white female 0-10
About 1818, “Anester Going” prepared an endorsement to the Revolutionary pension application of her son, Joseph Gowen affirming that she was his mother, according to the research of June A. Smith in 1993. “Anester Goins” appeared on the 1820 tax list of Madison County. Micajah Goins and Manoah Goins appeared there with her.
Children born to William Gowan and Anastasia Sullivan Gowan are believed to include:
Anastasia Gowan born September 17, 1756
William Gowen, Jr. born about 1757
James Gouven born November 28, 1758
Daniel Gowen born about 1759
Joseph Going born about 1760
Isham Gowen born about 1762
Jeremiah Goin born about 1767
Manoah Gowen born about 1768
Nancy Goin born March 4, 1770
Elizabeth “Betsy” Gowing born about 1775
Micajah Going born about 1782
Sally Goan born about 1792
Anastasia Gowan, “first child” of William Gowan and Anastasia Gowan, was born September 17, 1756 in Goochland County, according to “The Douglas Register.” Of this individual nothing more is known.
William Gowen, Jr, regarded as a son of William Gowan and Anastasia Sullivan Gowan, was born about 1757, probably in Goochland County, Virginia. It is believed that he was married in Bedford County, Virginia about 1774, wife’s name unknown. After the birth of three children, it is assumed that she died.
He was remarried about 1777 to Jamima “Jimminy” Burns, according to June A. Smith. She was reportedly a sister to Ann Burns who was married to Isham Gowen, brother of William Gowen, Jr. Jamima “Jimminy” Burns was “a cousin to Robert Burns, the Scotch poet,” according to William Floyd, a grandson-in-law of William Gowen, Jr. in a statement made in 1904.
William Gowen, Jr. became a Revolutionary soldier by about 1777, apparently leaving his three children in the care of their new step-mother. The name of his regiment and its place of operation is unknown. The Bedford County Court minutes reveal that Jamima “Jimminy” Burns Gowen received financial assistance from the county during his absence:
“Jamima Going, wife of William Gowin, a soldier in the service of the United States all’d [allotted] £10 in the hands of William Leftwich, Gent. Ordered to be cert’d [certified] to treasurer,” according to Bedford County, Virginia Court Minutes of November 24, 1777, page 135.
The court minutes of Bedford County Court Minutes dated July 27, 1778 recorded:
“Jamima Going, wife of William Going, Jr, all’d £8 for the support of herself and Family for Six Months in the absence of her Husband, a soldier in the service of the United States in the hands of William Leftwich, Gent. which is ordered to be Cert.”
William Floyd also stated that William Gowen, Jr. was “killed with an axe by a crazy man.” Floyd, then 84, made the statement in the summer of 1904 when he was interviewed by Charles E. Gowen, his nephew. William Gowen, Jr. may have been so severely injured in the axe attack that he was made an invalid, but he did not die until 1815 in Tennessee.
Charles E. Gowen, a grandson of James Burns Gowen and an early-day genealogist, kept a journal regarding people and events of that period in Bedford County, Tennessee. William Floyd stated in the interview that James Burns Gowen was born November 22, 1785 “near Lynchburg, Virginia.” Harold Ora Gowen, a great-great-grandson of James Burns Gowen of Tarpon Springs, Florida wrote in 1976 that James Burns Gowen was born in 1786 and that he was a “son of William Gowen.”
Family researchers, have assumed for many years that William Gowen, Jr. was slain about 1790. It appears that in 1790 that his children were placed in other homes. The three children of the first marriage, Jeremiah Gowen, Santford L. Gowen and Judy Gowen, apparently went to live with their grandparents, William Gowen and Anastasia Sullivan Gowen. The two sons of the second marriage, James Burns Gowen and William Davis Gowen were bound out to their uncle, James Burns, brother of Jamima “Jimminy” Burns Gowen, according to William Floyd. Accordingly, researchers had regarded all of the children as orphans at that time.
However, Cubert Thomas Wood, Foundation member of Columbia, Tennessee found what appears to be the probate records of William Gowen, Jr. in the courthouse there. This places the death of William Gowen, Jr. in Williamson County, Tennessee in 1815—25 years later than previously thought. The new discovery of Cubert Thomas Wood produces more questions than answers.
If William Gowen, Jr. were killed in Williamson County in 1815, why were his sons bound out to James Burns. his brother-in-law in Bedford County, Virginia about 1790?
Was William Gowen incapacitated in an attack in Virginia and died from his wounds some 25 years later in Tennessee?
Did the Bedford County Court regard his sons as mulattos or Melungeons? Mulatto children [and Melungeons] in Virginia were frequently bound out, even from two-parent homes when the court felt that they could receive better care elsewhere. .
There is no evidence that Jamima “Jimminy” Burns Gowen had more than two children. She and her two sons accompanied her brother, James Burns in a move to Davidson County, Tennessee in the winter of 1785. William Floyd spoke of the “exposure, hardship and difficulties” on the trek that James Burns Gowen had mentioned to him. Apparently William Gowen, Jr. also accompanied the Burns party to Tennessee and later settled in adjoining Williamson County.
Sandford L. Going and Jeremiah Going” accompanied their grandfather, William Gowen and most of his sons in a move to Madison County, Kentucky about 1798. Judy Gowen apparently remained in Bedford County until about 1805. “Judah Going” was married in adjoining Campbell County to Austin Dickinson March 2, 1805, according to “Campbell County, Virginia Marriages, 1718-1850.”
The property of William Gowen, Jr, which suggested that he was a carpenter, was inventoried in Williamson County as:
A True Inventory of the property of William Gowen, Dec’d. October 7, 1815:
Four head of horses, Six head of cattle, Eighteen head of hogs, Two feather beds & furniture, Three saddles, One loom, One desk, One table, Five chairs, One wheel, One reel, Two pots, One kettle, One Dutch oven, One waggon and gears, One plow, Three hoes, One mattock, Three axes, One jointer, One round shave, Three augers, One hand saw, One foot addz, Three bells, Three chisells, One gauge, One hammer, One cross, One iron wedge, One shackle, One drawing knife, One pair flat irons, One currying comb, One slate, One pair compasses, Five books, One slay, Two bridles, One dish, Six pewter plates, One coffee pot, Three bassins, Three bottels, Two tumblers, Five table spoons, Six tea spoons, One earthen dish, Four plates, One crock, One grind stone, Some cotton & flax, Five knives & forks, Two pair of cards, One candle stick, Some leather, One coffee mill, One froe, One log chain, One set of spools, Two tin kettles, Two tubs, Three pails, Two coolers, One churn, One half bushel, Two barrells, Two trunks, One pair of pinchers & some awls.
Which Inventory as above recited was produced into open court January Session 1816 by the Admr. Ordered to be recorded. Page 197, A. P. Hardeman, Clk.”
An estate sale of the “inventory of William Gowen, Dcsd” was held November 3, 1815, and the buyers were recorded as:
“Jemima Gowen *Froe & wedge $ 1.50
A. Johnston 3 Augers 1.06¼
Jonathan Potts Handsaw & Drawing knife 1.06¼
Calub Mandley Round Shave. hammer, compass
chisel & gauge .93½
Jemima Gowen Bell & foot adz 1.43½
Jesse Bizzel Clevis, pincher & curry comb .75
A. Johnston 2 Chissels .43¼
Geo. Burnet 1 Bell .81¼
Jemima Gowen AX & hoe 1.35½
Jonathan Potts Hames & traces 2.12½
Moe Capps 1 Ax 1.81¼
Daniel Duns Hackel & [illegible] .12½
Michal Dooly Hames & traces 2.18½
John Bridges Jointer & adz .50
Glen Owen Mattock hoe & singeltrees 2.00
Willm. A. Wells Barthew plow 2.81¼
Betsey Hood Washing tub .50
Edward Harris 1 Pigin .37½
A. Johnston 1 Baskett .37½
John Wise Half bushel .26
Edw. Sampson Half log chain 1.25
Salley Kenley Hoe .25
Jemima Gowen 1 Kettle 2.50
John Wise Larg pot 3.87¼
Moe Capps Dutch oven & hooks 2.56½
Salley Kenley Small pot .50
Edwd Harris 5 Chairs 2.43¼
Jemima Gowen Clock reel .75
ditto Saddle & wheel 1.00
A. Johnston Large kegg 1.00
A. Johnston Small kegg .31½
Bryant Gay Saddle & bridle 6.25
Benj. Sampson Saddle & bridle .50
Geo Burnet 1 Barrel & cotton 1.37½
Jemima Gowen Bag of cotton 3.00
Betsey Hood 1 Loome 6.00
A. Johnston Dish, 6 plates, bason & 5 spoons 5.00
Isaac Bizzel Hay & harness 1.06½
Jemima Gowen Dish, 2 plates, 2 tumblers,
coffee pot & candles .78
ditto Basin & tin pan .25
ditto Barrel .25
Salley Kenley 2 Plates, 3 cups-saucers & basket .25
Jemima Gowen 2 Bottels 1.43½
Salley Kenley Small trunk .50
Jemima Gowen Bed & furniture 2.00
John Fussell Bed & furniture 24.00
Edwd Harris Desk 6.62½
Dempsey Duns Waggon & hand gear 30.25
Betsey Hood 1 Sett of spools 2.00
Anderson Berryman Grind stone 1.25
Joseph Allen 1 Large saws 9.75
ditto 6 Hoggs, 1st choice 18.00
Salley Kenley 5 Hoggs, 2nd choice 5.00
Joseph Allen 5 Hoggs, 3rd choice 5.00
Georg Glascock Black heifer 8.25
Calub Mandley Red heifer 3.56¼
Dempsey Duns Red cow 11.50
Jos. Johnston Small red heifer 2.00
John Wells Black cow 11.00
Dempsey Duns Red bull calf 1.50
Daniel Duns Bay horse 52.12½
Littleton Johnston Black mare 30.31½
Jemima Gowen Gray mare 10.00
Elisha Williams Bay colt 15.00
Jemima Gowen Flax .50
Salley Kenley Leather 2.12½
Jemima Gowen 10 Barrels corn 5.00
Salley Kenley 10 Barrels corn 5.00
Total $ 327.35
*A froe was a carpenter’s knife with the blade set at right angles to the handle. It was used in making shingles and scantlings.
Neither of her sons made purchases at the auction sale of her household effects.
It is possible that at this time Jamima Burns Gowen was making preparations to join the household of her brother, James Burns. James Burns removed to Davidson County, North Carolina [later Tennessee], probably in the winter of 1785. William Floyd mentioned the “hardships and deprivation endured by the family” on the move to Tennessee.
The Davidson County Court on January 3, 1786 session ordered that “a handsaw in the hands of James Burns be attached and sold and monies thereby applied toward the debt of Evan Baker.” Henry Ramsey had successfully sued Baker before the court for a debt due in October 1784 and had been awarded £7:10 damages, according to Court Minute Book 1, page 485,
James Burns was appointed October 5, 1786 to the grand jury of “Davidson County, Territory of the U.S, South of the River Ohio.”
“James Burns, garnishee” was sued by the executors of the estate of Peter Johnston October 11, 1790, according to the records of Davidson County Court. “James Burnes” was summoned as a juryman for the court session of April 1791 and again in 1792.
James Burns and John Burns were named to a panel of veniremen in April 1793. On July 10, 1793, the court ordered that “so much of the road from Capt. Burns in the main road from Capt. Mansco’s to Nashville, viz, from the first crossing of Mansco’s Creek above his mill to where it joins the aforesaid Main Road to Nashville be discontinued.”
“James Byrns” was named to the grand jury April 15, 1794. “James Byrn” and “Stephen Byrns” were appointed as grandjurors in October 1794. “James Byrns” was commissioned a justice of the peace October 14, 1795. “James Byrns” was named tax assessor in “Stephen Byrns Company” January 13, 1796 by the court Other Burns men, probably kinsmen of James Burns, began to appear in the Davidson County records. Matthew Burns received a deed to Davidson County land from William Dobbins. Hopkins Lacey appeared in court July 13, 1791 to prove the deed.
“Stephen Byrns” was appointed to a road venire “to lay off a waggon road from county line of Tennessee County to the top of the ridge at the head of Cloud’s Fork and into Nashville Road about one mile from Mansker’s Lick at trees marked this 27th day of December 1791.” In 1792 and 1793 “Stephen Byrns” served on three jury panels.
John Burns was appointed a juryman for the first time October 10, 1791. He was on a jury panel again April 9, 1793. “Jno. Byrns, Geo. Perry and Jno. Ferry appointed as patrollers or searchers in Capt. David Shannon’s Militia Company.” On October 7, 1797 John Burns was selected as a juror in Superior Court.
“Capt. James Byrns” and Isaac Baker were securities for a $500 bond posted by Zacheus Baker July 11, 1796. Zacheus Baker had been “convicted of fornication by the oath of Eleanor Thompson and fined $25.” The bond was for the purpose of “indemnifying the parish of Davidson County from any Trouble or Expense concerning Birth, Maintenance or Education of a Bastard child sworn to him by sd. Eleanor Thompson.”
On July 12, 1796, “James Byrns” and Leven Donelson proved the “Last Will & Testament of Charles Baker, Dcsd.” Elizabeth Baker was qualified as his executor. On October 15, 1800 “James Byrns” was qualified as the executor of Charles Baker.
On the following day, “Routh Shout [Ruth Shute], an Orphan aged seven years last May past bound unto James Byrns until she attain age 18 years. Byrn to learn her to knit, sew & spin. And to give her Two good suits of Cloathing and a Horse & Saddle & Bridle worth $50 at the expiration of the term.”
On July 9, 1797 “Letter of attorney from Polly Lefever to James Byrns was proven by oath of Isaac Walton.” The document dealt with the division of land between the orphans of Isaac LeFever which was acknowledged by Jesse Glasgow and James Burns.
On April 14, 1800 “Capt. James Byrns came into court and released Ruth Shoat as being her Master. And the Court released him from his Obligation by Virtue of her Indenture and record made thereof.”
On January 15, 1801, “William Byrns” was appointed constable. He “gave bond of $650 with Zacheus Baker and James Williamson securities. Qualified.” On April 14, 1801 William Burns was named as a constable to the Superior Court. On October 11, 1803 “William Byrn” appeared in court to prove a deed from Robert Barnett to Ann Randal.
On January 16, 1801 “James Byrns, Esquire was designated by the Davidson County Court to take lists of Taxable Property in Capt. Baker’s Militia Company in Davidson County for the year 1801.” He was reappointed January 11, 1802 for the year 1802 and again for 1803 and 1804.. On January 12, 1802 in “State vs. James Byrns, Zacheriah Betts, prosecutor.” he was required to post a recognizance bond of $100.
In April 1802 James Burns was named as one of the 31 justices of the peace of Davidson County. On April 18, 1802 “James Byrn” was tried for assault on Zach Betts: “State of Tennessee agt. James Byrn, assault committed on Zach Betts. Jury find James Byrn Guilty of holding a stone in a throwing posture without raising his hand or throwing the stone, which, if the Law consider an assault, we find him guilty. If not, we find for the defendant.” [verdict signed by 12 jurors]. “Saturday Morning on Solem Argument had in the above case the Court are of Oppinion that the above was an Assault and fine him $1.”
On April 13, 1802, “Pursuant to a petition signed by sundry inhabitants, ordered that the road from Nashville to Robertson [County] Courthouse, beginning at the ford on Mansker’s Creek at John Rhoads Plantation be taken out of the Old Road up the side of the Creek along the New Road now cut out through Rhoads, Powells & Byrnes land, same being by their consent, and that so much of the Old Road as is parallel thereto be discontinued.”
On July 22, 1802, “James Byrn, Esquire” was appointed coroner for Davidson County by the Davidson County Court after posting a $5,000 bond. Isaac Walton and Nathan Ewing were his bondsmen. On October 15, 1802 Zacheus Baker was appointed Inspector of Cotton, and James Burns was his bondsman.
On July 11, 1803, the Davidson County Court minutes record that “It is ordered that the Clerk receive lists of taxable property during the present session by Jas. Byrns, Jas. M. Lewis and James Dickson, Esquires, sitting as a court.” On that date “James Byrns” was appointed guardian of “Ephrim Byrns, James Byrns and Stephen Byrns, orphans.” His bond was set at $600, and Henry Bradford was his bondsman.
On October 11, 1803 “James Byrns” and George Perry posted a $6,000 bond for Isaac Baker and Isaac Walton, administrators of the estate of Zacheus Baker, deceased. The administrators returned an inventory of the estate, and the court ordered it sold, “the Negroes excepted.”
Several counties surrounding Davidson County began to operate their own court systems in 1803, James Burns began to appear in adjoining Robertson County.
On October 12, 1803, “Justice James Byrns, Esquire took the statement of Elizabeth Fields relative to a deed that she and husband Dempsey Fields executed.” On the same day James Burns was appointed to take the “List of Taxables in Capt. Baker’s Company for 1804.
On August 4, 1806 James Burns was a resident of Robertson County, Tennessee, according to “Robertson County, Tennessee Court Minutes, 1796-1807” by Carol Wells. On that date he and “Jeremiah Goins” were appointed to a road venire. “Jeremiah Goins” is regarded as his nephew, the son of William Gowen, Jr. and his first wife.
It is believed that children born to William Gowen, Jr. and his first wife include:
Jeremiah Goins born about 1774
Sandford L. Gowen born about 1775
Judy Gowen born about 1776
Children born to William Gowen, Jr. and Jamima “Jimminy” Burns Gowen include:
James Burns Gowen born November 22, 1785
William Davis Gowen born about 1788
Jeremiah Goins, regarded as a son of William Gowen and his first wife, was born about 1774, probably in Bedford County. “Jeremiah Goin” and “Isham Goin” were listed as sureties in the marriage of “Nancy Goin” to Henry Vanover August 28, 1795, according to “Marriage Bonds of Bedford County, Virginia, 1755-1800.” This “Jeremiah Goin” may have been the uncle of Jeremiah Goins, son of William Gowen, Jr.
On September 4, 1797, “Jeremiah Goan” was “charged with feloniously taking and carrying away from the house of John Quinn on the 29th of August, sundry goods, the property of Robert Ross, value $6,” according to “Bedford County, Virginia Court Records,” Book 1, page 208.
He accompanied his grandfather in a move to Madison County, Kentucky about 1798. “Jeremiah Gowin” was married in 1799 in nearby Mercer County, Kentucky, according to the research of Christine S. Agee. It is believed that the bride’s name was Susannah Campbell. “Jeremiah Gowin” was listed in Madison County tax list of October 1, 1800, according to the “Second Census of Kentucky” by G. G. Clift, Kentucky Historical Association. He was recorded as “over 21, with no land.” In 1801, 1802 and 1803, he was shown as “over 21, one horse and no land.” In 1805 “Jeremiah Goens” appeared in the tax list of Silver Creek township with no land. He was recorded along with “William Goens,” “Micajah Goens,” “Manoah Goens” and “Joseph Goens.”
“Jeremiah Goins” and James Burns, suggested as his uncle, appeared on a road venire August 4, 1806 in Robertson County, Tennessee, according to “Robertson County, Tennessee Court Minutes, 1796-1807” by Carol Wells.
“Jeremiah Goin” and James Goin were listed in the 1812 tax list of Sumter County in Capt. Gabriel Martin’s company, according to “Sumter County, Tennessee Taxpayer Lists.”
Sanford L. Gowen, regarded as a son of William Gowen, Jr. and his first wife, was born in Bedford County about 1775. Of this individual nothing more is known. June A. Smith wrote February 2, 1995 that he was not found in the tax records of Madison County, Kentucky.
Judy Gowen, regarded as a daughter of William Gowen, Jr. and his first wife, was born about 1776 in Bedford County. “Judah Going” was married in adjoining Campbell County to Austin Dickinson March 2, 1805, according to “Campbell County, Virginia Marriages, 1718-1850.”
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