the Jernigan Connection Newsletter

Issue Twenty††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† April 2000

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††† Ten Year Anniversary

††† Marion Hargrove's Reasonable Ancestor Approach

†††Jernigan Reunions

††† Jernigan Special Events...Births, Marriages, Deaths, etc.

††† Lost and Found

Ten Year Anniversary

The Jernigan Connection Newsletter ten year anniversary occurs with this issue which is also the sixth issue and third anniversary of placing it on the Internet.† We hope that our readers continue to enjoy our efforts to provide you with interesting Jernigan genealogy articles.††

Marion Hargrove's Reasonable Ancestor Approach

Note from the editors: The Jernigan Connection Newsletter, Issue 19 dated September 1999, began presenting Marion Hargrove's reasonable ancestor approach† contained in letters he wrote† to Laona Hagenstad (1992) and Frank Jernigan (1993).† Mr. Hargrove gave us permission to use the information during the 1998 Dunn Reunion.† Since the data is quite extensive, we decided to present it in stages.† The first stage of his reasonable approach began with Sir John Jernegan of Somerleyton (1472-1515), who by his reckoning was twelfth in the direct line descent from Sir Hubert Jernegan of Horham in Suffolk.† It ended with Thomas Jernegan of Pentlow in Essex who drowned on the 11th August 1645.† This Thomas (and there are many by that name) was the father of Thomas, baptized 1618, who is our "Immigrant Thomas Jernigan".† The first stage ranges from 1472 to 1645 or 173 years.† We promised in the last issue to continue with the Immigrant Thomas.† There are available documents which take different paths from this Thomas.† Lillian Jernigan Worley's† book, "Jernigan Reunion", lists its genealogy first generation with the Immigrant Thomas, born ca. 1614 who had a son, Thomas Jernigan, Jr.† The line from† this Thomas Jernigan, Jr. through his son, Henry, is well documented yet it does not include much information of any other sons of our Immigrant Thomas.† Another son was John of Meherrin Creek which Mr. Hargrove documented in† his letters to define another line of Jernigans originating from our Immigrant Thomas.† We will get to John and his line much later.

Continuing with Mr. Hargrove's letter as written (quotes of official documents consistent with their numerous misspellings):†

Marion Hargrove†at '98 Dunn Reunion

Jernigans in America

In 1634 the colony of Maryland was established by royal patent and the arrival of more than 200 colonist under the command of a governor, Leonard Calvert, brother of its Lord Proprietor, Cecilius Calvert, second Lord Baltimore.† In 1637 Lord Baltimore appointed a Council for the governor, consisting of "our well beloved Jerome Hawley Esq., Thomas Cornwallis and John Lewger, Gent."†† Hawley and Cornwallis were original stockholders in the company.

According to Maryland "Patents, Certificates and Warrants, "Book 1, folios 17 and 18:† "Came into the Province 28th Novembr. 1637, in the Ship called the Unity, of the Isle of Wight, containing, among other things:† Mr. John Lavger [sic], who transported his wife, his son John aged 9 years, three maidservants and 3 man servants (named) a boy Robert Serle aged 12 years....."†† Mr. Jerome Hawley, Esqr., who transported Mary and Ellen [sic] Jermegan Gent [lewomen], Thomas Jermegan and Thomas Cullamore, Capt. Cornwaleys bought of the Ship, Charles Magnett, Stephen Gray, Alice Moreman."

In all likelihood, Mr. Secretary Lewger's six "servants" and probably the 12 year-old boy as well, were indentured servants, whose passage had been paid by him, and whom he planned to claim (or "sell" to somebody else) as headrights.† The same would apply to the three "bought" by Cornwallis.† As for the Jernegans, I figure them all to be children of Thomas Jernegan, Gent., of Pentlow in Essex.† "Ellen" would be Elinor, 18 and strong willed, who has agreed to become Mrs. Hawley UNLESS the place turns out to be a howling wilderness, and Mary, her chaperone and companion (21 and still unmarried, but not for long in a New World full of bachelors) and their brother Tom, who at 20 is a year too young to be called a Gentleman and perhaps doesn't give a hoot.

The minute Hawley stepped off the boat, he was entitled to five headrights, worth at least 50 acres of land apiece; three Jernigans, one Cullamore, and himself.† Interestingly enough, not one of these headrights was ever claimed -- by anybody.† Historically, a notable percentage of immigrants to the Colonies died within their first year.† On 24 Mar 1737/8 (Court and Testamentary Business, 1658, page39) "an Inquest upon view of the body of Thomas Cullamore ... found him drowned by misadventure."† Hawley was the next to go, of the usual unadventurous natural cause, presumably anopheles female mosquitoes.† The Provincial Court on 6 July granted "administration of Mr. Hawley's estate," as well as Tho. Cullamore, "to the Captaine, Mr. Tho. Cornwalys."† The Captain, it was charged in countless lawsuits over the next ten or twelve years, had false claims of indebtedness on Hawley.† In one of these actions the Widow Hawley was called as a witness.† That was 27 August 1638, and her name was indeed Eleanor, and she testified that her late lamented husband had indeed owed the said Cornwaleys the £400.† It is at least even money that she was remarried before the onset of cold weather and that her sister was married already.† As for her brother, let me start a new list with him --thus:

1. THOMAS JERNIGAN OF MARYLAND, born England 1618, survived the winter and was one of 14 freemen of St. Michaels Hundred who voted in Maryland's first election.† They met at St. Inigoes on 19 February 1638/9 to elect two of their number to the new House of Burgesses, and Thomas' signature was third on the list of voters.† St. Inigoes was (and is) 15 miles or so up from Point Lookout, between Chesapeake Bay and St. Mary's River where it empties into the mouth of the Potomac.† It is in St. Mary's County.

(The original court records of St. Mary's County were lost in a fire of 1768.† A second fire, in 1831, destroyed every surviving record, as well as most of the early history of the whole province.† According to "The County Courthouses and records of Maryland" (1963), pt. 2p, 158, "The register of wills fared somewhat better.† The recorded Wills seem to be complete.† The accounts were in small part preserved for the colonial period.† All the other Records series are found only after the Revolutionary period."† All of my references are from publication of the state Hall of Records Commission and the Maryland Historical Society, studied (years ago, I must confess) in the University Research Library of UCLA.† There is a crying need for further, more contemporary research in other such Maryland records, such as parish registers of St. Mary's County and elsewhere.† You're welcome; as for me, I no longer have the legs for it.)

The connection at this point is very tricky, and it is one that I realize I have been fighting off for quite a long time.† I heartily dislike "creative genealogy": guesses, theories, hallucinations.† Given a choice, I usually prefer a certain degree of documentary evidence.† For years, I have looked high and low for one particular Jernegan who seemed to be absolutely nowhere.† He might as well never have existed.† He was missing from the records!† I finally gave up on the guy.† Recently, though, the problem has come back to haunt me, along with a recurring memory of a favorite quotation from Sherlock Holmes:† "When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable must be the truth."

When a man who has to have existed is not in the records, it is not the man who has disappeared.† It is the record that has disappeared.† And the man we are looking for is not one man, but parts of two men, separated in time by less than thirty years, and in space by less than forty miles.. and downstream, at that.† The records disappeared in 1768 in the ashes of the home of Owen Allen, deputy clerk of St. Mary's County, Maryland.† So far as we know yet, they covered the entire adult life of Thomas Jernegan, ibid., and his whole family, up through the first 20-odd years in the life of his (probably eldest) son, known to us as:

2. THOMAS JERNIGAN SR. of† NANSEMOND COUNTRY, VA.† The land grant, as recorded in Virginia Patent Book 6: page 146, is dated 18th May 1668, indicating usually that it was applied for two years earlier, in 1666.† It says:† "To all &c. whereas &c., Now know yee that I the said Sir Wm. Berkeley knt. Governor &c. give and grant unto Mr. Tho. Jerningham [the "ham" crossed out and the correction "an" written above it in the same hand] two hundred & fiftie acres of Land lying or being in the County of Nanzemond at a place called Somerton beginning at a marked ash standing by a fresh run and soe runing S.E. 125 Joyneing to Aylingtons land to a pine and soe N.E. 320 poles to a marked oake butting on the Land of Wm. Moore and soe N.W. 125 poles Joyneing to Wm. Moores land to a marked Gum standing by a fresh run side and soe S.W. downe by the run side 320 poles to the first Station.† The said land being due by lawe for the transport of five persons &c.† To have and to hold &c. yielding and paying p. vi d. &c."† Dated the eighteenth day of May 1668.

Since the five persons transported (into the colony, that is) are not listed by name immediately below the patent itself, it is permissible to assume that these five "headrights" could very well be the patentee himself and the four members of his household who came with him.† And passenger fares between England and Newport News, Va., were even more outrageous then than today -- and any Englishman who could afford a party of five all the way to Virginia had no reason for going to Virginia in the first place.†† On the other hand, and enterprising young fellow in the neighborhood of Point Lookout, Maryland, could stack a wife and three kids aboard a raft and float his whole family down the bay to Nansemond -- to begin "seeding and seating" of 250 acres of swamp country thereunto appertaining.†

The "Mister" before Thomas's name was a title of respect, but only minimally so.† Studies of 17th Century Virginia indicate that a man's prestige was measured sometimes by his wealth, very seldom by how much land he owned, but usually by how much labor he controlled.† The overseer of a plantation was as much a Mister (well, almost) as his employer was.†† In Thomas's case, the honorific is a hint that probably one of two of his household were not children but servants, probably slaves.

In 1685 a second patent went out, this time in the name of 'Thomas Jernigan SENIOR," for 330 acres by Somerton Swamp, but a study of the metes and bounds shows that the new 330 acres included the old 250.† The "fresh run" was this time identified as Somerton Swamp itself.† The use of "senior" shows that eldest Jernigan boy was also a Thomas.† On 20 October 1689, a patent (VPB 8:9) was issued to:

3-A. THOMAS JERNIGAN JUNR. of NANSEMOND COUNTY; VA.† The land was 300 acres at Somerton "on a swamp called Back Swamp," to which he was entitled by six headrights, listed as John Harwell [probably Harrell], Margaret Grady, Abraham Jolly, Jno Nottingham, Wm Sandiford and Robt Croome.† In 1696, according to Hening's "Statues at Large" [of Virginia], 4:58, "James Doughtie, father of Edward Doughtie, purchased of Thomas Jernegan, son of Thomas Jernigan, the plantation whereon the said Edward now lives, lying on Evans' Creek, in Nansemond County, being part of a patent for 700 acres of land, formerly granted to one Mulford."† Most Jernigan genealogists seem to be agreed that Mulford was the Thomas Mulford who, in 1650, was granted 700 acres in Nansemond "near the head of the Southward Branch of the said [Nansemond] River" -- or maybe his son, whichever of the two had a daughter (and heir) named SARAH.

Thomas Jr. and Sarah had, besides probably several other sons and a decent sprinkling of daughters, three sons on whose names we can reasonably reach agreement.† They are Thomas, and David, and William.† Deep in my heart is the abiding belief that none of these was the eldest son -- the wistful stay-at-home, the heir, the progenitor of countless Jernegans who STAYED in Nansemond County, and some of whom are still there.† This eldest son may be (and I'm only guessing) the GEORGE X JERNIGAN who was with the elder Thomas in Bertie (1734?), witnessing (with a very graceful flowing "G") the deed in which the latter sold the last of the patent "of the said Jernigan" dated 9 March 1717/18 (Bertie deed D"246).

THOMAS JERNIGAN "the mariner" of Martha's Vineyard, MA was born in Nansemond about 1695 and came to the Vineyard in 1712 with Captain Joseph Jenkins.† He married Abigail Ripley, by whom he had seven sons and a daughter, of who only two survived him: Sarah (born 1719) and William, (born 1728 shortly after the death of his seafaring father "of a fever" in Jamaica).† William became the leading citizen of his generation in Edgartown, and the ancestor of all the Martha's Vineyard Jernegans (with the middle "e", just like back in the Old Country).

†In February 1722/3, several shipmates of Thomas, and most likely Thomas himself,† came visiting his parents in Nansemond, and his father gave him a remembrance to take home to his family: Thomas Sr. of Nansemond, yeoman, unto son Thomas of New England, mariner, one Negro girl about 17 years old, named Rose.† The deed (Edgartown, MA Deeds 3:521) is witnessed by two men from Martha's Vineyard -- Thomas Daggett and William Mackelroy, who was married to young Thomas's wife's sister -- and two Nansemond lads, Stephen Catten and Thomas's brother David Jernigan (his mark "DI", meaning "DJ").† Either or both of the latter may have been shipmates of the others, or may have joined them at this time.††

At any rate, 12 years and 1 day later:

DAVID JERNIGAN "of Nantucket, MA." (and Bertie, NC) made a disposition, "sworn to at Nantucket" 13 Feb 1734, that "about three year and a half ago he Recived a Letter from his father in vergene to Return home thare but Going up the sound with James Claghorn to seek Passage he Cutt his Knee which obligd him to go back again to Samuel Peeses at Edgartown."† (For those interested in that sort of thing, Peese was Thomas's widow Abigail's, second husband.)

David seems to have made it home on the second try, and married.† On 15 May 1736 (recorded in Chowan Deeds 2 May 1744), there was a deed from David "DI" Jernagan and wife Mary "M" Jernagan, of BERTIE, to Moses Hair of Chowan.† For 10 barrels of tar, 100 acres south side Beaver [sic] Swamp, by several courses of the patent line to the Round Marsh, down the branch to Beaverdam Swamp, down swamp to the beginning. Bequeathed by Francis Spight [sic] to his daughter Mary Spight, now wife of aforesaid David Jernagan."† Seen on the map, this location in present Gates Co. has to be in or near the Speight place that Colonel William Byrd of Westover, VA, mentions in his memoirs of running the Dividing Line between Virginia and North Carolina in 1728.† Right about here, he recalls the Line ran between Speight's house and its outhouse.† (If the Speights had imagination, or or sentiment, they might have named their next son John.)

Francis Speight was a contemporary of Thomas and Sarah Jernigan, and died 1732.† We do not know old Mary was, nor whether she had been married before.† David was well into his 30's in 1736, and ordinarily would be expected to have at least the beginnings of a family by the age of 21.† I am inclined to give both of them the benefit of doubt.††

The tax lists of Bertie County in 1757 show six household of Jernigans in this order:† Jesse with 1 white poll and 2 blacks ...David [1 poll] .. David 2 polls .. Jacob 7 polls .. George 2 polls ... David of Loosing Swamp 1 poll.† I can vouch for Jacob and Jesse, having known both of them for years.† As for the others, since by now I am ready to be hung for a sheep as well as several lambs -- and since, as I am sometimes told, there is no fool like an old fool -- I will conjecture that the remaining taxpayers are: one grandfather, David of Loosing Swamp, son of Thomas and Sarah .. then His two sons, GEORGE of Wildcat Branch and DAVID nearby, each with one son over 16 and still on the premises .. and one full-grown grandson named DAVID, whom I take to be the son of the aforesaid "David nearby".

The Bertie deeds, which I read on microfilm that grew paler and paler until it was practically white on white I was going prematurely blind, indicate that George and his sons George and David signed by mark, though both boys -- George Jernigan Hodam, and the elder (by far) of the two Davids who died in Franklin County NC in 1795 -- learned to read and write later on.† I believe that the George and David who signed the 1759 petition (to form a new County of Hertford) were the sons of "David nearby".† I believe that the David who signed the petition was the father of David "Wilborne" Jernigan of 1795 Franklin plus his heirs-at-law (i.e., brothers) Needham, Elisha and Hardy-of Nansemond.

(My old assumption was that all the Jernegans in and around the present town of Ahoskie were descended from John-and-Temperance's James.† But except for John's will, in which he left James 100 acres of land "over AHorskey Swamp", there is never another mention of James before or since. The land was still there in 1746, when the rest of the old 400 acre patent (to John Molten sr., 1716) was sold by a Mr. Standley to his son -- "only 100 [acres]† excepted called by the name of Jurnigan's thicket."† I now assume only that James was a good man like his brother, and may have died, even younger. This brings us, at long last, to the fourth (or perhaps even younger) son of Thomas and Sarah of Nansemond:†

WILLIAM JERNIGAN SENR. of Nansemaond, VA and Johnston County NC was apparently a late-comer everywhere he went.† He died more than 60 years after his father, and 100 years after the birth of his brother Thomas, and one year after the death of his son-in-law Henry, who was also his nephew and almost as old as William himself.† The first mention I find of him is in May 1757, when he had at least one daughter, one son (and numerous grandchildren living in Johnston County.† At that point, William was buying 160 acres on Short Beaverdam Swamp in Chowan, a location his elder brother Henry and family had departed almost 20 years earlier.† A year later he sold that land as William x Jornakin of Bertie.† He finally turned up in Johnston in the 1760's with his wife (second wife? third?) Elizabeth and, as the poet says, pursued the even tenor of his ways.† He witnessed the will of his son William Jr. in 1782, and himself died in the summer of 1784, survived by his wife, a son Etheldred, and a daughter, Ann Jernigan/Jernigan, widow of his nephew Henry Jernigan Jr.

Thus far [that is] the known line of Thomas Jernigan Junr, of Nansemond County, VA.

Editor's note:† The next or third stage of "Marion Hargrove's Reasonable Ancestor Approach" will begin around 1700 with Henry, another son of the "Immigrant Thomas" and will be presented in our September 2000 issue.† We surely want to thank Mr. Hargrove over and over for allowing our use of his genealogy information.††

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Jernigan Reunions

The Jernigan Reunion in Checotah, OK., is scheduled for July 2001 in Arizona.† Plans are being developed by Jacque Clonts Holladay and locations and specific schedules will be published in the next newsletter of September 2000.

The Jernigan Reunion in Dunn, N.C.,† is held each year on the first Sunday in May (May 7, 2000).† Learry Warren of Dunn (grandson of John B. Richard Jernigan, g-grandson of William James Jernigan, g-g-grandson of Bud Icard and Sallie Wright Adams Jernigan) with financial assistance from George J. Jernigan, Sr., has caused the Bud (Budd) Icard Jernigan Cemetery near Stony Run to be cleared for the first time in 50 years.†† This could become a side tour of the Dunn Reunion where Jernigan families could view and take pictures in this original Jernigan cemetery.†

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Jernigan Special Events...Births, Marriages, Deaths, etc.


Taylor John Harris was born March 20, 2000 to parents, Malinda and Rand Harris.† Taylor weighs in at 9 pounds, 7 ounces and has a sister named Bailey, who is 2 1/2 years old.† Malinda is the daughter of Jacque (Clonts) Holladay, granddaughter of Dixie Clonts and great-granddaughter of Mary Jo (Jernigan) Dixson..

Chandler Justin Lane was born January 10, 2000, to Justin and Jessica Lane.† Chandler's weight was eight pounds, three ounces, and he was 22 inches long.† He is the grandson of Debi Lane,† great grandson of Dixie Clonts, and g-g-grandson of Mary Jo (Jernigan) Dixson.†


Bette (Jernigan) Stout married James Wydeman Sanders (Retired USMC Lt. Colonel) on September 25, 1999 at Checotah, Oklahoma.† Bette works for the City of Checotah and Wyderman teaches at Conners State College.† Bette is the daughter of Benjamin Harrison and Lou Jernigan.


Lillie Leota (Jernigan) Cox of Mt. Vernon, Texas, died March 2, 2000.† She was preceded in death by her husband, Ernest Wade Cox and survived by six children: Dorothy Haley, Elsie Smith and Bobby Cox (all of Mt, Vernon); Elizabeth Hicks of Galt, California, Sylvia Dodd of Auburn, CA., and Juanita Foreman of Stockton, CA.† Lillie Jernigan was born 12 October 1907 to Wesley Thurman and Mattie Martha Davis Jernigan. She was the sister to Johnnie Mae Jernigan Onley of Marshall, TX, and late brothers; Newt, Lester, William "Bill", Wilford, Ezra "Dutch", Guy, and Harvey Jernigan; also late sister Zera Jernigan Humphries.

Eunice Marie (Ivey) Jernigan died October 31, 1999.† She was preceded in death by her husband, Melvin Ben Jernigan, and survived by three children: Mitzi Jean (Jernigan) Jones of Dallas, TX, James Melvin Jernigan of Arlington, VA, and Donald Keith Jernigan of Plano, TX.† Eunice was born on October 26, 1911, in Sherman, TX.††

Judge John Tucker Jernigan of Little Rock, Arkansas, died October 28, 1999.† John was born† to parents, W. J. and Lucile Tucker Jernigan in1916.† He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Margaret Weir Jernigan, and four daughters; Margaret Elizabeth Jernigan of Little Rock, Martha Ann Pittman of Hattieville, AR., Mary McCormick of Fayetteville, AR., Ellen Ginnaven of Alexander, AR., and one brother; W. J. "Jay" Jernigan of Little Rock (Issue #14 of the Jernigan Connection Newsletter contains an article on Jay)†† He was preceded in death by his sister, Cile Ramsey McCaskill.† Judge Jernigan was awarded the Purple Heart and Bonze Star during WWII for heroic action in France , when he crawled over exposed ground and under fire to move a wounded comrade to safety.††

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Lost and Found

Lena West is searching for information on William Thomas Jernigan.† She is a descendant by way of Jesse Jernigan, William Henry Jernigan and Martha Jane Jernigan.† Her email address is: [email protected].†

SFC James A. Jernigan is searching for information on his family.† His grandparents were N. L. and Nobie (Huff) Jernigan, who were married in 1929.† N. L. had brothers and sisters and it is believed that his uncle was William A. Jernigan from Brewton, Alabama.† James' email address is [email protected].†

Judy Jernigan is trying to locate information on Ancle Vernon Jernigan (aka "A. V." or "Ants").† He supposedly died in Arizona.† Judy's email address is [email protected].†

Dorothy Anne Jernigan Reid Chilen, granddaughter of Louis August and Stella Tison Jernigan, was beginning her genealogy search and sent a request for help. Barbara Fowler has since provided her with a lot of information she is looking for and Kay Stone indicates that Dorothy is in her line and has a lot of data for her. This is another success story when the Jernigan researchers work together.

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