Person:Benjamin Dugger (9)

m. Before 1745
  1. Rebecca Dugger1745 -
  2. Mary Dugger1750 - 1836
  3. Benjamin DuggerBefore 1751 - 1815
  4. William Dugger1750 - 1839
  5. Hannah Duggerabt 1752 - aft 1796
  6. Julius Dugger1760 - 1838
  • HBenjamin DuggerBefore 1751 - 1815
  • WElizabethBefore 1755 - After 1830
m. ca 1772
  1. Cora Ann Dugger1773 - 1849
  2. David Dugger1777 - 1850
  3. Mary Dugger1778 - After 1860
  4. Sarah DuggerBefore 1784 - After 1808
  5. William Dugger1784 - 1837
  6. Celia Dugger1785 - 1855
  7. Joel Dugger1787 - 1867
  8. Susannah Dugger1789 - 1869
  9. Rhoda Dugger1791 - 1888
  10. Daniel Dugger1795 - 1852
  11. Elizabeth Dugger1798 - After 1880
Facts and Events
Name Benjamin Dugger
Gender Male
Birth? Before 1751 Brunswick, Virginia, United States
Marriage ca 1772 Surry, North Carolina, United Statesto Elizabeth
Death? 1815 Ashe, North Carolina, United StatesNow Watauga Co., NC
Burial? Howell Cemetery, Watauga, North Carolina, United States

Benjamin Dugger was born ca 1747 or earlier, assuming he was at least 21 when his first public record was recorded. That record was a deed where he received property. There was no minimum age for that so it may not be the best one to use for age calculation. He was listed on the 1772 tax list in his own name, so he was probably 21 or older then, or born ca 1751 or before. The 1800 census does show him over 45, so born before 1755 for sure. It is safe to say he was born before 1755, and probably safe to say before 1751.

Benjamin Dugger’s parents are not proven, but it seems extremely likely that he is a brother to Julius Dugger (1760), William Dugger (1750) and Mary Dugger Goodwin Smith (1750/60) as they were all associated with one another and arrived in the NC-TN border region at the same time. It is theorized that they are all children of William Dugger (Sr) (c1720) for he came to that region when they did.

Benjamin is often listed as a son of the mythical Julius Caesar Dugger, but that is wrong.

Benjamin was probably named for the older Benjamin Dugger (c1724), his presumed uncle.

John Preston Arthur had this to say about Benjamin:

... The Dugger family of Cove Creek are descendants of Benjamin Dugger, who came from Yadkin Elk in 1793 or 1794 to Brushy Fork and entered land there, and for whom the Dugger Mountain and creek east of the Blue Ridge are named. There were three Dugger brothers who came from Scotland and stopped awhile near Petersburg, VA., named Benjamin, Daniel and Julius. Ben stopped at Yadkin Elk, Daniel went to Kentucky and Julius settled near Fish Springs on the Watauga River, Tennessee. It was from Julius' children that the Banner's Elk Duggers descended." (A History of Watauga County, North Carolina. John Preston Arthur. 1915. p. 222)

The above is interesting, though a little off. Daniel who went to Kentucky was actually Benjamin’s son, not his brother. Also there is no evidence that the Duggers were from Scotland.

Mr. Arthur said more about Benjamin Dugger’s family:

Dugger Family. --- In 1793 or 1794 Benjamin Dugger came to Watauga County from Yadkin Elk, where a creek and mountain still bear his name. He entered land on Brushy Fork, near the present Holtsclaw settlement. His children were Selah, who married Lawson Goodin; Daniel Dugger; Cora Ann, who married Samuel Burns; Susannah, who married John Whittington; Mary, who married John Calihan; David and William Dugger. David Dugger bought out the other heirs. The deed is dated November 1, 1815 and calls for two tracts on Brushy Fork. There were three Dugger brothers who came from Scotland to Yadkin Elk, having settled for a time near Petersburg, Va., Benjamin, Daniel and Julius. Ben stopped on Brushy Fork, Daniel went west to Kentucky and Julius settled in what was then Carter County, Tennessee, near Fish Springs, where some of his descendants still live. It was from the Julius Dugger family that the Dugger Forge and the beginnings of Cranberry forge started. David married Margaret Ernest and their children are: Henry, who married a Green; Polly, who married David Howell; Elizabeth, who married Jehiel Smith, and William, who married Unice Munday. William's children were: Henry, who never married; Franklin, who married Martha Presnell; David, who married Mary Munday; Elizabeth, who never married; John, killed in Civil War; William Eben, married Nannie Wilkerson; Margaret and Mary Jane, not married; (A History of Watauga County, North Carolina. John Preston Arthur. 1915. p. 303)

On 20 Mar 1768 William Dugger deeded a “Read and White Cow” and other livestock to Benjamin Dugger in Pittsylvania Co., VA. Witnessed by Samuel Hall. This is the first public record for Benjamin Dugger. It isn’t clear whether this is his father William Dugger or his brother William Dugger, however, his brother was only 18 at this time, so it is more likely his father. There is also the possibility that this is the older Benjamin Dugger instead. (Pittsylvania Co., VA Deed Book 1 page 167).

Benjamin Dugger married Elizabeth (—) ca 1772 in Surry Co., NC. Her maiden name is unknown, though some list her as a Duke, but I don’t know where that comes from.

Benjamin Duger was listed on the 1772 Surry County tax list with 1 poll.

Benjamin Dugger was listed on the 1774 tax list in Surry, again with 1 poll.

Benjamin Dugger and William Dugger were listed together on the 1775 Surry tax list, for 2 polls. This record shows that they were probably indeed brothers.

Wilkes County was formed in 1777 from the western part of Surry, and the Duggers fell into the new county.

On 2 Nov 1784 Benjamin Duggar received a state land grant for 100 acres on the south fork of Elk Creek on Julius Duggar’s line (his brother). (Wilkes Co., NC Deed Book A1 page 492).

Benjamin Dugger was listed on the 1787 North Carolina State Census:

  • Wilkes Co., NC Benjamin Dugger 1-4-6-0-0
  • Analysis:
  • 1 male 21 to 60 (1726/1766)=Benjamin Dugger (c1747)
  • 4 males under 21 (1766/1787)=1-David Dugger (1777); 2-William Dugger (1784); 3-Joel Dugger (c1787) sons; 4-Unknown
  • 6 females (any age)=1-Elizabeth (—) Dugger (bef 1755) wife; 2-Cora Dugger (1773); 3-Mary Dugger (c1775); 4-Celia Dugger (c1786); 5-Unknown daughter; 6-Unknown daughter

Benjamin Dugger was listed on the 1787 tax list in Wilkes Co., NC in Capt. Isbell’s company. He was taxed for 130 acres,1 poll and 1 stud horse.

Benjamin Dugger was listed on the 1788 Wilkes tax list in Capt. Witherspoon’s Company. Taxed for 300 acres and 1 poll.

A deed was made on 26 Apr 1788 in which Benjamin and his brother Julius were mentioned. William Isaacs of Burke Co., NC, sold 190 acres to Zebulon Baird for $200. The land was on both sides of Elk Creek adjoining land formerly owned by Samuel Hall, John Beverly and Benjamin Duggar, and being tan entry made by Julius Duggar but sold by law by Richard Allen to William Isaacs. (Wilkes Co., NC Deed Book C1 page 58).

On 9 Aug 1789 Benjamin Dugger received a state land grant of 19 acres on the south fork of Elk Creek, adjoining the upper corner of his “other survey.” (Wilkes Co., NC Deed Book B1 page 415).

Benjamin was listed on the 1790 census in Wilkes Co., NC.

  • Wilkes Co., NC, 12th Company, page 163 Ben Dugger 1-3-6-0-0
  • Analysis:
  • 1 male 16+ (bef 1774)=Benjamin Dugger (c1747)
  • 3 males under 16 (1774/1790)=1-David Dugger (1777); 2-William Dugger (1784); 3-Joel Dugger (c1787) sons;
  • 6 females any ages (bef 1790)=1-Elizabeth (—) Dugger (bef 1755) wife; 2-Cora Dugger (1773); 3-Mary Dugger (c1775); 4-Celia Dugger (c1786); 5-Susannah Dugger (1789); 6-Unknown daughter

On xx xxx 1797 Theophilus Evans, Thomas Kindal and Benjamin Dugger witnessed a deed from William Farguson to John Brown for land on South Fork Elk Creek. (Wilkes Co., NC Deed Book D page 296).

On 5 Dec 1798 Benjamin Dugger received a state land grant (# 1631) for land on Elk Creek, waters of Watauga above the Great Falls. (Wilkes Co., NC Deed Book D page 598).

Benjamin was listed on the 1800 census in Wilkes County. The enumerations don’t account for all the children that should have been at home.

  • Wilkes Co., NC page 36 Benjamin Dugger 11101-21101
  • Analysis:
  • 1 male 45+ (bef 1755)=Benjamin Dugger (c1747)
  • 1 male 16-25 (1774/1784)=David (1777) or William (1784) sons
  • 1 male 10-15 (1784/1790)=Joel Dugger (1787) son
  • 1 male 0-9 (1790/1800)=Daniel Dugger (c1796) son
  • 1 female 45+ (bef 1755)=Elizabeth (—) Dugger (bef 1755) wife
  • 1 female 16-25 (1774/1784)=Mary Dugger (c1775) daughter
  • 1 female 10-15 (1784/1790)=Celia (1786) or Susannah (1789) daughters
  • 2 females 0-9 (1790/1800)=1-Rhoda Dugger (1791) ; 2-Elizabeth Dugger (c1799) daughters

On 13 Oct 1802 Benjamin Duggar of Ashe Co., NC sold 50 acres on Elk Creek to Martin Hall. Witnessed by Joel Duggar (made his mark) and Mary Duggar (made her mark). (Wilkes Co., NC Deed Book C1 page 435).

The above deed shows that the Duggers had moved to neighboring Ashe County between 1800 and 1802. Joel and Mary Dugger are Benjamin’s children.

On 12 Feb 1807 Benjamin Dugger entered 50 acres on Brush Fork of Cove Creek in Ashe Co., NC. (North Carolina Land Entry # 1722)

Benjamin was listed on the 1810 census in Ashe Co., NC.

  • Ashe Co., NC page 73 B. Dugger 00101-11111
  • Analysis:
  • 1 male 45+ (bef 1765)=Benjamin Dugger (c1747)
  • 1 male 16-25 (1784/1794)=Daniel Dugger (c1796) son
  • 1 female 45+ (bef 1765)=Elizabeth (—) Dugger (bef 1755) wife
  • 1 female 26-44 (1765/1784)=Mary Dugger (c1775) daughter
  • 1 female 16-25 (1784/1794)=Susannah Dugger (1789) daughter
  • 1 female 10-15 (1794/1800)=Elizabeth Dugger (c1799) daughter
  • 1 female 0-9 (1800/1810)=Unknown

Benjamin Dugger died ca 1815 in Ashe Co., NC. He is buried at the Howell Cemetery in what is now Watauga Co., NC (formed in 1849). His marker must have been placed many years later for it gives his death date as 1797 which is off by almost 20 years. It has been theorized that this is the grave for a different Benjamin Dugger, perhaps a son who died young. No other information is on the stone so we can’t really be sure. A newer stone was placed with the same information by Gordon S. Dugger in the 1950's. Now there are two stones, though the old one was buried and out of easy view for many years.

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