About the McFerrin Family in America
According to "Family Tradition", the stories of the early McFerrin immigrants to America have a similar storyline. Most tell of three brothers that migrated to Pennsylvania, sometime between 1730 and 1750 (note the differing dates in sources below, certainly it was prior to 1745 as shown below), then migrating to Augusta County, Virginia, where the first record of their migration there belongs to John McFerrin, who was appointed an overseer of the road from Orange County (the predecessor county of Augusta) in the following record:
- MARCH 10, 1745/6. - (20) Mark Evans, William Kervine, John McFarron, James McGomerie appd. Overseers of Road Blazed by Orange Co. from inhabitants of Roanoke to top Blue Ridge at bounds of Brunswick Co. and Cap. Robinson and John Mills are to lay off precincts and tithables.
This John McFerrin also received a grant from Benjamin Borden for 319 acres on "Catabo Creek" on 30 November, 1749.
From "Early McFERRON and McFERRIN Presence in America"
- A family with strongly suggestive ties (although the date of coming to America predates that by sixty five years and calling their surname "McFERRIN" rather than McFERRON), is described in a biography of Dr. John B. McFERRIN, a Methodist Minister, in Prominent Tennesseans. That book reports that Dr. McFERRIN's great grandfather William McFERRIN, Sr., was one of three brothers who came from Ireland about 1730 and resided for some time in York County, Pennsylvania. The grandfather, also named William, was a patriot soldier in the Revolution. The father of Dr. John B. McFERRIN was James McFERRIN who married Jane Campbell BERRY, both born in Washington County, Virginia, and settled in Rutherford County, Tennessee in 1804, one year after the county was organized. This McFERRIN family were originally Presbyterians, but became a family of Methodist preachers.
From "John B. McFerrin: A biography" By Oscar Penn Fitzgerald, Oscar Penn Fitzgerald (Bishop), pg. 13:
- THE McFerrins emigrated from Ireland to America about 1750. They settled in York County, Pennsvlvania. The family connection consisted of three brothers and their young families. The descendants of one of the three removed to the western part of that State. The Rev. Dr. McFerrin, an able and respected minister of the Presbyterian Church, lived for many years near Pittsburgh. William McFerrin, the greatgrandfather of John B. McFerrin, removed to Augusta County, Virginia, in 1765, where he married Jane Laughlin. John Laughlin, the father of James, was married to Jane Matthews, and was reared within two miles of Belfast, Ireland. They emigrated to America in 1753, and settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. His son James married a Miss Duncan, and the grandmother of John B. McFerrin was one of their numerous offspring. These Duncans indulged a pardonable pride in a family tradition that they were remotely connected with the once royal family of Scotland. (The most democratic of Americans are seldom indifferent to the fact of having a noble ancestry.)