Person:Absalom Looney (3)

m. ABT 1715
  1. Thomas Looney1718 - ABT 1764
  2. Martha Looneyabt 1717/18 - bet 1763-1769
  3. Robert Looney, Jr.1721 - 1756
  4. Daniel Looney1723 - 1760
  5. Adam Looney1725 - 1770
  6. Samuel Looney1727 - 1760
  7. Louisa Looney1728 -
  8. Absalom Looney1729 - 1791
  9. John Looney1732 - 1817
  10. Peter Looney1734 - 1760
  11. David Looney1735 - 1810
  12. Joseph B. Looney1740 - EST 1817
m. 1750
  1. Michael Looney1751 - 1839
  2. Elizabeth LooneyABT 1753 -
  3. Peter H. Looney1755 - 1835
  4. Mary LooneyABT 1757 - bet 1811-1823
  5. Margaret Looney1758 - BET 1830 AND 1840
  6. Jonathan Looney1761 - 1824
  7. Absolom Looney, Jr.1763 - 1818
  8. Ruth LooneyABT 1765 -
  9. Catherine LooneyABT 1766 -
  10. Ann LooneyABT 1767 -
  11. Priscilla LooneyABT 1771 - 1813
  12. Benjamin LooneyABT 1773 - ABT 1845
Facts and Events
Name[1][2] Absalom Looney
Gender Male
Birth? 1729 Ireland
Marriage 1750 Augusta County, Virginia[now Rockbridge County]
to Margaret (Peggy) Moore
Residence[1] bef 1770 Augusta (now Rockbridge), Virginiaon Looney's Creek
Residence[2] abt 1770 Abbs Valley, Tazewell, Virginia, United StatesAbb's Valley is named after him
Residence? c1791 Meadow Creek, Craig County VA"EARLY LOONEYS IN AMERICA" by Leroy W. Tilton Part 4
Death? 28 Sep 1791 Botetourt County, Virginia, United States {Now Craig County)Will date. Probate date was 1796, fide "EARLY LOONEYS IN AMERICA" by Leroy W. Tilton Part 4
Alt Death? abt Jun 1796 Bluefield, Botetourt, Virginia, United Stateskilled by Indians Citation needed

Absalom Looney was one of the Early Settlers of Augusta County, Virginia


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Absalom is sometimes identified as having been born on the Isle of Mann. The basis for this is not known [to me at least]. Virginia Land Grant records show that he had a 50 acre parcel surveyed on what is now called "Meadow Creek", in 1767 in what is now Sinking Creek Valley in Craig County. Since this was the beginning of the French and Indian War, with many of the early settlers fleeing the southwestern Virginia area, it seems likely that he at least temporarily left the area. He probably returned in the early 1760's as the threat of Indian attack decreased. He is shown living in John Reynolds District in the 1785 Virginia census. John Reynolds lived in Sinking Creek Valley, which include the area drained by Meadow Creek. In anycase, at his death Absolom was probably living in the Meadow Creek portion of Sinking Creek Valley. The basis for him dying in Blue Field, in what is now West Virginia, is unknown.

Looney's wife is commonly identified as "Margaret Moore" who is supposed to be a kinswoman of James Moore=Jane Walker, Jane being the daughter of John Walker=Katherine Rutherford of the wall known Wigton Walker line. It was kinsman Absolom Looney who according to some accounts steered the Moors to Abs Valley about 1767. Looney is supposedly the discover of Abs Valley during a hunting expedition, or while searching for ginseng, a much in demand, equally valuable, commodity (which is a lot lighter to carry!).

From "A History of The Middle New River Settlements and Contiguous Territory", by David E. Johnston (1906):

An adventurer by the name of Absalom Looney in 1771 left his home on Looney's Creek, now in the Rockbridge Country, and came over the Alleghanies and explored the upper Bluestone country, particularly a beautiful valley now in Tazewell County, Virginia, and which in part bears the name of its discoverer, being called "Abb's Valley." Looney remained in this valley and adjacent territory for two or three years, and had for his refuge and hiding place from the savages and wild beasts a cave or rather an opening in the limestone rocks, for it was not deep under ground. This hiding place was pointed out to the author by William T. Moore, Esq., whose grandfather settled nearby in 1777. The cave referred to is a few yards south of the spot whereon now stands Moore's Memorial Methodist Church. On Looney's return to his home he gave such glowing description of this valley that one of his neighbors, Captain James Moore, was induced to make a journey to see it. He came in 1776 or 1777 alone, from his home with no companions nor weapons, save his rifle gun, tomahawk and butcher knife, the hunter's usual weapons of offense and defense. Looney had furnished him such a description of the valley as to enable him to find the way without difficulty.

When Absolom wrote his will in 1791 he was apparently living in Botetourt County, as that is where his will was entered into probate in 1796. The will was witnessed by Daniel Givens who is otherwise known to have been living on Meadow Creek a few miles southwest of New Castle, in what was then Botetourt County, but is now Craig County. Givens was a a near neighbor of Absolom. Shortly (December of 1791) after writing his will Absolom sold a parcel of land on Craigs Creek to this same Daniel Givens. Meadow Creek is a tributary of Craigs Creek. Land on Meadow Creek was often described in early land records as "in the waters of Craigs Creek". While the entire Valley is usually referred to as "Sinking Creek Valley", Sinking Creek actually flows south into the New River, while Craigs Creek flows north into the James. The Valley is thus subdivided into northern and southern ends separated by the "Great Eastern Divide".

  1. 1.0 1.1 Absalom Looney, in Johnston, David E. (David Emmons). A history of middle New River settlements and contiguous territory. (Huntington).

    [text quoted in body]

  2. 2.0 2.1 Historical Highway Markers - [enter XP-5], in Virginia Department of Historic Resources.

    Five miles southwest is Abb’s Valley, discovered by Absalom Looney. James Moore and Robert Poage were the first settlers, about 1770. In July, 1786, Shawnee Indians raided the valley, killing or carrying into captivity the Moore family. Mary (Polly) Moore, Martha Evans and James Moore (captured earlier) finally returned. They are known as “The Captives of Abb’s Valley.” Virginia Conservation Commission 1939
    (Location: Lon (X): -81.33424 Lat (Y): 37.30928 ; on Rt. 102, just east of Pocahontas)