From the files of Stephen M. Lawson 

Bartholomew Highsmith and Eleanor Powell

Daniel Highsmith and Ann Beck

Daniel Highsmith and Lucretia Parker

Thomas Highsmith and Sarah Wood

Martha Elizabeth Highsmith and Asa Kerby

Elizabeth Kerby and John Joseph Sears

Chesley Sears and Elizabeth C. McClanahan

Malinda Margaret Sears and Scott Cyrus Freeman

Lucy Jane Freeman and James Martin Lawson

Donald VanHoosier Lawson and Iva Melvina Freeman

Stephen Martin Lawson

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Most of the material on the HIGHSMITH family is derived from Highsmiths in America, compiled by Annette Paris Highsmith, edited and enlarged by Chris H. Bailey (Provo, UT 1971) and Highsmiths in American Addendum, Second Edition, compiled by Delwood S. Jackson (Cincinnati, OH 1985).

Bartholomew and Eleanor (Powell) Highsmith

Bartholomew HIGHSMITH - d. after 1728, probably in Norfolk Co., VA. Barthaw HYSMITH was living at Portsmouth, Norfolk Co., VA, in 1693 when he witnessed a will, and in 1728 when he and his wife Ellenor sold 95 acres to Abraham WASTON, witnessed by Henry CROOCH, Sarah POWELL, and Thomas MARTIN. Married about 1709, probably in Norfolk Co., VA.

Eleanor POWELL - b. about 1692, Norfolk Co., VA; d. after 1728, probably in Norfolk Co., VA. Daughter of William POWELL, whose will dated 1701 and in probate 1715/6, Norfolk Co., VA, leaves 95 acres to daughter Eleanor.

That Daniel is the son of Bartholomew and Eleanor is unproved, but supported by evidence in land records, residence locations, approximate dates, and some given names of children being the same as supposed POWELL cousins. The major difficulty lies in the estimated dates of birth of Eleanor and Daniel.

Possible son of Bartholomew and Eleanor Highsmith

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Daniel and Ann (Beck) Highsmith

Daniel HIGHSMITH - b. about 1710, probably in Norfolk Co., VA; d. before Feb. 1, 1772 (will proved), Halifax Co., NC. Possibly the son of Bartholomew Highsmith and Eleanor Powell. Purchased land in Bertie Co., NC in 1727, and settled in Halifax Co., NC by 1750 where he and Ann sold 33 acres of land in St. Brides' Parish to Richard GRANGER on Dec. 10, 1761. Daniel's will was dated Mar. 8, 1771 and proved Feb. 1, 1772. Married about 1735.

Ann BECK - b. about 1715, Norfolk Co., VA; d. after Jan. 1772. Ann inherited 33 acres in St. Brides' Parish from her father. Daughter of Benjamin BECK and Margaret SUGGS.

Children of Daniel and Ann Highsmith

  1. Daniel - b. about 1737, Norfolk Co., NC; d. about 1807, New Hanover Co., NC.
  2. John - b. about 1739, Norfolk Co., NC; d. 1790-1800, Pitt Co., NC. On Beaufort Co., NC tax rolls in 1755. Married about 1755 Sarah. Children: Nancy married Noble STANCIL; Jacob married Sarah; Moses married Esther TAYLOR; William married his first cousin Dorcas HIGHSMITH; John married Nancy; and probably Peggy.
  3. Mary - b. about 1741, Norfolk Co., NC. Married John IRWIN (d. 1790, Bertie Co., NC) before Mar. 1771.
  4. Sarah - b. about 1743, Norfolk Co., NC. Married about 1760, Bertie Co., NC, Benjamin ROGERS (d. 1778, Bertie Co., NC). Children: Reuben married Christian ALDERMAN; Anna married Josiah LEE; Winifred married Josiah EUBANKS; and Jesse.
  5. Dorcas (or Dorkas) - b. about 1745, Bertie Co., NC.
  6. Juda - b. about 1747, Bertie Co., NC. Married Mr. RAIN before Mar. 1771.
  7. Elizabeth - b. about 1749, Bertie Co., NC. Married Mr. SHEPPERD before Mar. 1771.
  8. Lydia - b. about 1751, Halifax Co., NC. Married Mr. FAIR before Mar. 1771.
  9. James - b. about 1753, Halifax Co., NC; d. Jan. 10, 1824, Elbert Co., GA. Married Milly (b. about 1770, Elbert Co., GA; d. 1837). Children of James and Milly HIGHSMITH: Lucretia married Hiram Robert SKELTON; John married Mary CASON; Susannah married Burrell BOBO (uncle of Benjamin B. BOBO); Sarah married Benjamin B. BOBO (nephew of Burrell BOBO); Winnefred married Mr. GRIFFIN; Nancy married Daniel M. JOHNSON; and Thomas Henry married Elizabeth PARKS.
  10. Ann - b. about 1755, Halifax Co., NC. Married Mr. BRADY before Mar. 1771.
  11. Anna - b. about 1757, Halifax Co., NC.
  12. Martha - b. about 1760, Halifax Co., NC.

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Daniel and Lucretia (Parker) Highsmith

Daniel HIGHSMITH - b. about 1737, Norfolk Co., NC; d. after Feb. 19, 1807, New Hanover Co., NC. Son of Daniel Highsmith and Ann Beck. On Oct. 8, 1772, Daniel sold to his brother James HIGHSMITH, the "parcel of land left to me by my deceased father, Daniel Highsmith, in his last will and testament, which said land lies on Roanoke River in Halifax County," and probably soon removed to New Hanover County. A Revolutionary War soldier from NC, he is found in the DAR Patriot Roster as "HIGHSMITH, Daniel: b c 1739 d p 2-19-1807 m Lucretia -- Sol NC". The 1784-1787 state census of NC listed a Daniel HIGHSMITH, Sr. in Black River District of New Hanover County on 1 Apr 1786, which may be Daniel. The household consisted of 4 white males age 21-60, 1 while male under 21 or over 60, 5 white females, and 1 black age 12-50. Daniel's will was written Feb. 19, 1807, and names his wife and all of his children. It does not give his residence, but was filed in the probate records of New Hanover Co., NC. Based on activities of the Bultail Church (of which they were members), it appears that Daniel and Lucretia lived in that part of New Hanover county which is now in the southwest region of Pender County (formed in 1875), near what is now Moore's Creek National Battlefield on the Black River. Married about 1755, probably in Halifax Co., NC.

Lucretia PARKER - b. NC. Daniel and Lucretia were members of the Beltail Burch of the Old Kehukee Baptist Association in New Hanover Co., NC (now Wells Chapel Baptist Church of the Wilmington Baptist Association), with their names appearing in the minutes in 1796 and 1803. The Church minutes reveal that Daniel was excommunicated in "January 1796 for disobeying gospel rule and government of the Church," and that in Mar. 1796 Lucretia was "excommunicated for censuring the Church for dealing with her Husband by order of the Conference." The Church minutes also record that "Old friend Highsmith came forward and was restored again to fellowship in December, 1803." Daughter of Thomas PARKER and Martha MAPLES .

Children of Daniel and Lucretia Highsmith

  1. Thomas - b. 1755, Halifax Co. (or New Hanover Co.?), NC; d. 1828, Crawford Co., IL; bur. on the Abner Lindsay farm near Flat Rock, Montgomery Township, Crawford Co., IL.
  2. Daniel - b. about 1757, Halifax Co., NC; d. after Jul. 1825. On Montgomery Co., GA tax rolls in 1797. Settled in Tatnall Co., GA where he deeded lands to his children on Jul. 12, 1825. Married before 1790. Children: Luvenia married Arthur BOYT; Beady did not marry; Isaac married Delana PITTMAN; Mary 'Polly' married Rees FRENCH; Daniel may have married Milly OGDEN; and Annis married her first cousin David, son of James HIGHSMITH.
  3. James - b. about 1760, Halifax Co., NC; d. before Jul. 1831, Tatnall Co., GA. Married before 1802, Charity. Children: David married his first cousin Annis, daughter of Daniel HIGHSMITH; Allen D. married Elizabeth KNOX; Isaac married Elizabeth PURDOM; and Solomon Yeomans married Eliza Ann COUCH.
  4. John - born about 1762, Halifax Co., NC. In Warren Co., KY 1803-1809.
  5. Benjamin - b. about 1764, Halifax Co., NC. Lived in Montgomery Co., GA in 1797, Adair Co., KY in 1803-4, Warren Co., KY in 1806-7, and Lincoln Co., MO in 1821-5. His son Ahijah Morris HIGHSMITH served in both the War of 1812 and the Black Hawk War under Capt. Nathan Boone, and appears on a St. Charles Co., MO tax list with a family of three, 6 cattle, 5 slaves and a saw mill in 1834. Benjamin HIGHSMITH was married about 1793 in GA to a Mrs. Abigail MORRIS. By her first marriage, Abigail had children, three of which have been identified as Jonathan D. MORRIS, Mr. D. K. MORRIS, and Polly MORRIS WILSON. Children of Benjamin and Abigail: William married Marie Catherine; Ahijah Morris married Deborah TURNER (settled in Bastrop Co., TX); Phineas Richard did not marry; David married first Jane MILLER, and second Mary J. DUNBAR; Samuel married Teresa WILLIAMS; Elizabeth married Wilson MILLER; Rachael married Mr. RIDDLE; and Polly married Mr. RUSSELL.
  6. Elizabeth - b. about 1766, Halifax Co., NC.
  7. Rachel - b. about 1768, Halifax Co., NC. Married about May 1783, Duplin Co., NC, Stephen BOWEN (d. Nov. 10, 1838), son of Lt. Clifton and Martha. Stephen served in 5th NC Reg't in Rev. Children, born in Effingham and Bullock Cos., GA: Elizabeth married Thomas H. ASHLEY; Nancy married Bani BOYD; William married Effie SMITH; and Mary married John DOUGLAS.
  8. Lucretia - b. about 1770, Halifax Co., NC.
  9. Sarah - b. about 1772, NC.
  10. Nancy - b. about 1774, New Hanover Co., NC.
  11. Dorcas - b. about 1776, New Hanover Co., NC; d. Mar. 1855, New Hanover Co., NC. Married first cousin William HIGHSMITH (b. about 1762, NC). Children: John married Sally BLAND; Dorcas married Jessie LEE; Jacob married first Elizabeth BLAND, and second Miriam KILLETT; Thomas possibly married Molly YOEMAN; Isaac married; Elizabeth married Enoch JOHNSON, Jr.; James B. married first Sarah JOHNSON, and second Dicy Ann ROBINSON; a daughter; William married first Elizabeth A. MELVIN, and second Mary Eliza JOHNSON; and Lewis B. married Sarah A. MELVIN.
  12. Isaac - b. about 1778, New Hanover Co., NC; d. 1838, New Hanover Co., NC. Married 1797, NC, Edith (b. about 1780). Children: Lucretia married John ROGERS; a daughter married Mr. NEWTON; Daniel married Anna Jane NEWTON; Lewis married first Mary Ann NEWTON, second Phoebe ALDERMAN, and third Elizabeth SPEARMAN; Noah married first Miss NEWTON, second Miss NEWTON, third Susannah ALDERMAN, and fourth Nancy Ann ALDERMAN; James married Margaret REGISTER; Isaac married Eliza; and Susan married Isaac Morgan ALDERMAN.
  13. Samuel - b. about 1780, New Hanover Co., NC; d. about 1890, GA. Married Phoebe (b. 1790, NC). Children: Samuel married Margaret Louisa; John married Sarah E. McDANIELS; Sarah married Ezekiel ABBOTT; and Daniel married Leah McMULLEN.
  14. Judy - b. about 1782, New Hanover Co., NC.
  15. Mary - b. about 1784, New Hanover Co., NC.

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Thomas and Sarah (Woods) Highsmith

Thomas HIGHSMITH - b. 1755, Halifax Co., NC; d. about 1828, Crawford Co., IL; bur. on the Abner Lindsay farm near Flat Rock, Montgomery Township, Crawford Co., IL. Son of Daniel Highsmith and Lucretia Parker. DAR records cite his Revolutionary War service as 'PS NC PNSR P@.' Residences: 1777, New Hanover Co., NC; 1782, Surry Co., NC; 1787, Duplin Co., NC; 1788, Wilkes Co., GA; 1793, Greene Co., GA; 1795, Henry Co., KY; 1799, Warren Co., KY; 1800, Green Co., KY; 1811, Lawrence Co., IL; 1815, Henry Co., KY; and from 1820, Crawford-Lawrence Co. area, IL. Thomas was a signer of the following addressed to General Gibson from Fort Allison, Lawrence Co., IL on Sep. 9, 1812: "Situation precarious as upper fort was broken up and has shook 'likely to fall except it get a brace,' pray that you excellancy grant us the men that were stationed for our relief." He is likely the Thomas HIGHSMITH who joined the Little Village Primitive Baptist Church of Lawrence Co., IL. Many descendants are buried in Jones Cemetery near Flat Rock, IL.

Sarah 'Sally' WOOD - bap. Apr. 21, 1751, Morristown, NJ; d. 1820-1830, Crawford Co., IL; bur. on a farm near Flat Rock, Crawford Co., IL. The birthplaces of her children are shown based on the recorded places of residence in the year of birth. She was the daughter of Richard WOOD and Rebecca.

Children of Thomas and Sarah Highsmith

  1. Daniel - b. about 1778, New Hanover Co., NC; d. about 1804. Resided in Warren Co., KY before 1805, and bought land in Robertson Co., TN by 1809. Served in War of 1812 from TN. Married Susanna (or Susan). Children: Elijah married Tracy MASON; James married Mary Emily FARTHING; Lucky; Lucinda married Enoch FARTHING; and Henry married first Matilda SKINNER, and second Nancy ADAMS.
  2. Elizabeth - b. about 1780, New Hanover Co., NC; d. Oct. 1855, Randolph Co., MO. Married Asa KERBY.
  3. Nancy - b. about 1782, Surry Co., NC; d. Nov. 2, 1862, Warren Co., KY. Marriage bond dated Sep. 23, 1797, Green Co., KY to Rev. William HARRIS (b. Aug. 7, 1772; d. 1845), son of James HARRIS and Ann MCKINNEY. Children (order uncertain): John married Nancy GOODSON; Thomas Highsmith married Martha E. SKILES; Chapman; Chathana; William B. married Harriet A. PAISLEY (SAR line); Polly married Edward NEAL; David Rice; S. G.; Alexander Chapman married Mary NORFLEET; Sally; Nancy Lowery married Rev. George L. BLEWETT; Young Finis Ewing married Mary Ann ROWE (DAR line); Rev. Josiah; Rev. W.; Rev. Chaltam; and two others.
  4. Mary 'Polly' - b. about 1784, Surry Co., NC. Marriage bond Nov. 14, 1805, Warren Co., KY, to Samuel WOODS, brother of Catherine (who married Polly's brother James).
  5. James - b. Jun. 17, 1786, Surry or Duplin Co., NC; d. Jul. 11, 1843, Crawford Co., IL. Married on Aug. 14, 1806 (bond), Catherine WOODS (b. 1787, KY; d. about 1876, Crawford Co., IL), daughter of Ahijah WOOD (or WOODS; half-brother of James' mother). The first nine of their children were born in Henry Co., KY, the youngest in Crawford Co., IL. Children: Mary married Samuel H. ALLISON; Whitfield married Susannah JOHNSON; Sarah married David Young ALLISON; Thomas Turner married first Elizabeth REAVILL, and second Angeline JOHNSON; Ahijah Woods married Cynthia S. MONTGOMERY; Zerrelda married first William MONTGOMERY, and second Samuel S. CUNNINGHAM; William Voorheis married Maria Jane FORD; Elizabeth W. married William REAVILL; Christopher M. married Martha Jane ALLEN; and James Madison married first Susanna GHER, and second Sarah E. SCHROYER.
  6. Martha 'Patsey' - b. about 1787, Duplin Co., NC. Marriage bond Aug. 1807, Warren Co., KY to Edmund MORRIS.
  7. Richard M. - b. about 1789, Wilkes Co., GA; d. 1874, Crawford Co., IL. An elder and minister of the Primitive Baptist Church, he was a member of the Glady Fork and Canaan Churches in Lawrence Co., IL. Richard was married on Apr. 11, 1811 in Warren Co., KY to Sarah SPANN in 1811. "Sister Richard Highsmith" is listed as a member of the Glady Fork Primitive Baptist Church. Children: Elizabeth C. married William WEGER; Daniel M. married first Phoebe H. ALLISON, and second Mary Ann VERNON; Logan died young; Thomas M. married Eliza A. COOK; Lavinia Elizabeth married Daniel MICKEY; Nancy H. married James Wesley HUNT; Ewing Spann married first Elizabeth WALLACE, and second Harriet WALLACE; Leander Sharp married Maria Jane FORD; John Addison married first Martha Jane NEAL, and second Eliza DELENDER; Marinda A. married Joseph A. MIDGETT; Cynthia Ann married Aaron PAINTER; WIlliam Nathaniel died young; and Sarah Catharine did not marry.
  8. Lucinda - b. about 1791, Wilkes Co., GA. Married Apr. 23, 1812, Knox Co., IN, John MILLS.
  9. Nathaniel - b. about 1793, Wilkes Co., GA; d. Sep. 15, 1853, Crawford Co., IL. Nathaniel served in the Black Hawk War as a Corporal under his brother Capt. William HIGHSMITH. Married Nov. 14, 1822, Lawrence Co., IL, Elizabeth MATTHEWS (b. 1801, OH or VA; d. Oct. 1865, Crawford Co., IL). Children: Martha Jane married Andrew MONTGOMERY, Jr.; Mary A. married Samuel RICH, Jr.; Sarah married George RICH; Nathaniel Morris married first Margaret SEANEY, and second Sarah R. RICH; Elizabeth married John CARTER; John Madison married Mariah Catherine SEANEY; James M. did not marry; and Hester Ann married George BLACKERBY.
  10. John - b. Sep. 18, 1796, Greene Co., GA; d. 1884; bur. United Brethren Cemetery, Howard, KS. Living in Crawford Co., IL at time of 1880 census, he was a member of the Glady Fork Primitive Baptist Church. Married first in 1816 Mary FORD (b. Feb. 7, 1795), and second Dec. 9, 1839 Jane FORD. Children of John and Mary: Susan Ann married Alfred Harrison ALLISON; Absolem McCoy died young; Nathaniel Morris died young; Martha Jane died young; Warner Ford died young; Addison Martin died young; Richard Newton married first Mary Ann CARTER, and second Julia Ann CARTER; William Sampson married Mary Ann JONES; Nancy Ellen died in infancy; and Mary Elizabeth died young.
  11. William - b. Mar. 19, 1798, Henry Co., KY; d. about 1871, IL. William served as a Capt. in the Black Hawk War. He was a member of the North Fork Primitive Baptist Church at Willow Hill in Lawrence Co., IL. Married Oct. 18, 1817 (bond), Henry Co., KY, Maria FORD (b. about 1801, Henry Co., KY), daughter of Abner and Annah (RICH) FORD. Children: Louisa B. married Richard RICHARDS; Samuel Ford married first Mary WALLACE, second Martha A. WALDROP, and third Mary RAYBURN; M. J. married William FORD; a son; John Oliver married Sarah C. STEPHENS; William H.; Ahijah Morris married first Della HOPPER, and second Lucretia GRIMES [father of Martha Ellen HIGHSMITH, who married Edward THOMPSON - from: Russell E. Thompson of West Covina, CA]; Amos Milton married Sarah Emeline FISHER; Lewis Clark married first Frances M. SHELTON, second Emeline PAINTER, and third Julia Ann WILLIAMS; Mariah Ella married first Andrew Clark RICH, and second William M. SHELTON; and Martha E. married Alfred DORSEY.
  12. Hopestill - b. Oct. 30, 1799, Warren Co., KY; d. Nov. 25, 1888, Flat Rock, Crawford Co., IL. Hope married Jan. 16, 1816, Henry Co., KY, John FORD (b. Mar. 9, 1795, Henry Co., KY; d. Aug. 21, 1855, IL), son of John and Elizabeth (PALMER) FORD. John served in the War of 1812. They lived in Henry Co., KY until 1829, when they moved to Crawford Co., IL. Children: Sally married James M. WEGER; Elizabeth married John Miller JONES; Cynthia Ann married John WEGER; Josey Ann married Samuel WEGER; Warner J. married Elizabeth R. LORANCE; John Thomas married Sarah Ann REAVILL; a son; William; James did not marry; Nathan married Caroline H. LORANCE; Alfred married Martha C. McCORKLE; Lucinda J. did not marry; and Martha A. died young.
  13. Sarah - b. Nov. 6, 1801, Warren Co., KY; d. about 1830, Lawrence Co., IL. Married Oct. 18, 1817 (bond), Henry Co., KY, Amos RICH (b. Mar. 15, 1798, KY; d. Oct. 19, 1857, Crawford Co., IL. Children: Thomas T. married first Rebecca RICH, and second Martha MIDGETT; Isaiah died in infancy; Maria Ann married first William Moody ALLISON, and second Obediah WEBB; Lucinda married John PINKSTAFF; William R. married first Emeline PINKSTAFF, second Hettie M. CASH, and third Sarah C. STEPHENS; Melinda married Amos WAGONSELLER; and John Baptiste married first Catherine Jane FORD, and second Rachel ROGER.

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Modified: 4/27/06