Facts and Events
Henry Wilson was one of the Early Settlers of Augusta County, Virginia
Early Land Acquisition in Augusta County, VA
Henry Wilson's land (Beverley Manor, 115 acres on Christian's Creek, acquired from John Caperton and his wife Mary on 15 August 1759) as shown on the map meticulously drawn by J.R. Hildebrand, cartographer. This map is copyrighted©, used by permission of John Hildebrand, son of J.R. Hildebrand, April, 2009.
Acquisition of Land from Chalkley's:
- Page 149.--15th August, 1759. John Caperton and Mary, yeoman, to Henry Wilson, £25, 115 acres on a branch of Christian's Creek in Beverley Manor; corner James Caldwell. Teste: James Allen.
Disposition of Land from Chalkley's:
- Page 544.--22d February, 1764. Henry Willson and Mary to John Taylor, £55, 230 acres in Beverley Manor on a branch of Christian's Creek; corner to the Christians' land; James Caldwell's corner, William Armstrong's line. Delivered: John Taylor, 1766. Teste: W. Christian, P. Christian, Wm. Means. (Note: it appears that Henry Wilson likely acquired an adjoining tract to his original 115-acre tract acquired in 1759)
- One of the latest stations indicated in the historic literature is attributed to Henry Wilson (Ardery 1939:14), who established himself around 1798 near the present Little Rock community in eastern Bourbon County. Henry Wilson first settled a station in Mercer County on the Salt River where he spent the tumultous years of the early settlement period (see section on Mercer County for more details). He sold his Mercer land in the 1790s and acquired land through purchase in the Bourbon County area A large number of deed transactions are recorded for Henry Wilson in the Bourbon County records. One of the earliest is from Ebenezer Severns of Elanoi County, Virginia to Henry Wilson of Bourbon County, dated January 18, 1785. This deed was for 700 acres, being part of a 1,400-acre settlement and preemption by Severns and given to William Pannill of Orange County, Virginia, to clear out on shares (Bourbon County Deed Book C, p. 245). The property was not described but the Court ordered that it be recorded. No survey description was found, however. Wilson apparently obtained the land and sold 100-acre allotments to various individuals at low cost, then repurchased the land a few years later at an increased price. Presumably, Wilson used this method to get his land cleared. He also involved a Philamon Thomas of Mason County in this endeavor. A deed for 100 acres indicated that Thomas and Rachel Stevenson sold to Wilson a tract on Severns Creek (probably later Brush Creek), being the same land Stevenson bought from Wilson and Thomas as part of one of William Pannill's 500-acre surveys (Bourbon County Deed Book D, pp. 75-77). The earlier transaction alluded to involved fifty pounds for 100 acres. Wilson repurchased the land on February 18, 1797 for two hundred pounds. Another similar transaction took place between Thomas and Agness McCoy and Wilson and Thomas (Bourbon County Deed Book D, pp. 148-150) on March 8, 1796. Wilson also made other transactions which involved his family, particularly Henry Wilson, Jr. who apparently acquired part of the Severns/Pannill acreage.
The site attributed to Henry Wilson (designated 15Bb8O) is located on the Snow Hill farm on a branch of Brush Creek, a Hinkston tributary (Figures IV-24 and IV-25). Perrin's history associates a salt-making operation with Joseph Wilson who may have been a brother. The site consists of a stone foundation at ground level, forming a rectangle, approximately 22 x 58 feet in dimensions. A slight embankment around the foundation exteriors may represent fallen walls. The foundations abut a spring which is enclosed within a small subterranean room, rectangular in plan, with steps leading down into it. Shovel probes inside and outside the main structure encountered rock; however, the backfill from a groundhog burrow indicated the presence of charcoal-rich midden inside the stone outline. A later large stock trough was formed by walling in the run which empties from the spring. Another low earthen berm is noticeable perpendicular to the west wall of the later pond and sixty feet south of the south wall of the structural foundation. No artifacts were noted; however, pasture obscured much of the site, both inside and outside the stone foundations. Since midden was documented and structural foundations are preserved, this site is considered potentially eligible.
A possible location for the salt mine is across the creek on a hill where a large deep hole is still discernible. Henry Wilson is buried in a family cemetery nearby.
- What about Henry Wilson Sr.? His great-grandson, Henry Todd Wilson, stated that Henry Sr. was Scotch-Irish. This is a likely claim, since Henry Wilson Sr. was living in Augusta Co., Va. as early as 1759. This indicates that Henry was born in the province of Ulster (or northern Ireland) and was, therefore, in no way related to James Wilson the Signer, who was born in St. Andrews, Scotland and was not Scotch-Irish. Henry Wilson Sr. may have been related, perhaps even a brother, to Lt. Col. George Wilson [appears unlikely based upon the location of George Wilson and his family]. They were roughly the same age, Henry, born ca. 1727 and George, born 1729. The first Virginia records for both of them show them in Augusta County. Moreover, there seems to have been a tradition of kinship, at least among the descendants of Henry Wilson Sr.
Combining this with Henry's estimated birth date, one can speculate that Henry Wilson was born in Ulster in about 1727, was brought by his parents to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in about 1728, was left an orphan by their untimely death in about 1734. If Henry was actually born in 1728 or 1729, another year or two needs to be added to the other dates.
_____ Wilson born in Ulster, a province of Ireland
married in Ulster
died in about 1735 perhaps in Philadelphia, Pa.