Person:Paulser Smelser (1)

Paulser Smelser
b.1720/30 Virginia
d.bef. 25 May 1778 Bedford County, Virginia
m. abt. 1756/57
  1. John Smelserabt 1757 -
  2. Elizabeth 'Betsy' Smeltzerabt 1760 -
  3. Jesse Smelserest 1765-1775 -
  4. Paulser Smelserabt 1766 -
  5. Rebecca Smelserabt 1768/69 -
  6. Stephen Smelserabt 1770 -
  7. Abraham Smelserabt 1772 -
Facts and Events
Name Paulser Smelser
Alt Name Paulser Smelzer
Alt Name Paulser Smallser
Alt Name Poulson Smelser
Gender Male
Birth? 1720/30 Virginia[bef. 1733 according to some researchers]
Marriage abt. 1756/57 to Catherine Unknown
Death? bef. 25 May 1778 Bedford County, Virginia

John Smelxer was one of the Early Settlers of Augusta County, Virginia


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Early Land Acquisition in Augusta County, VA

Acquisition of Land from Chalkley's:

  • Page 64.--13th January, 1754. Same (from Col. James Patton) to Palzer Smalzer (Smelzer), 440 acres, part of a patent to Patton on Crabb Creek, a branch of New River. Cor. Ebenezer Westcott.
  • 1759 - Augusta Co., VA "Palzer Smalzer" purchased 440 acres in Draper Tract part of a patent on Crab Creek.

Disposition of Land in Montgomery County, VA Records: (Crab Creek was then located in Montgomery County)

  • 1787 - June 5 Montgomery Co., VA Deeds John and Mary Smelser sold 292 acres Crab Creek (formerly Augusta Co.) to Jacob Hornbarger for L100 (this part of Paulser's property)(Bk A p 442). (Note: as eldest son, this land fell to John, who sold it after his father's death).
  • 1788 - Dec. 26 Montgomery Co., VA Deeds John & Mary Smelser sold 148 acres Crab Creek (formerly Augusta Co.) to William Bowles

Early Land Acquisition in Bedford County, VA

  • Paulser Smelser had 189 acres surveyed on 5 April 1755 in Bedford County. (Bedford County, VA Survey Bk. 2, pg. 271)
  • 1769 - Bedford Co., VA Palser Smelcer bought 225 acres on both sides of Wilson's Fork of Goose Creek from Michael Woods (Bk 3 p. 263).
  • 1775 - Paulser Smelser had land surveyed in Bedford County.

Will Transcript

1777 Dec. 7 - In the Name of God Amen--I Paulser Smelser of the County of Bedford being sick and weak of body, but of sound memory, and calling to mind the uncertainty of this transitory life knowing that God has appointed that all men shall once die--I have thought proper to make, Constitute and Confirm this my last will and testament. Viz: That I first of all recommend my Soul into the hands of God that gave it, and my body to the dust of whence it was taken to be decently buried -- And as for my Worldly Estate that it has pleased God to bless me with I ordain in form and manner following to wit--. Imprimis my desire is that all my debts any ways contracted be first of all paid.
I give and bequeath to my beloved wife Catherine Smelser during her natural life or widowhood the Plantation I now live on with all the stock that is now on it excepting what is here after mentioned, but if my wife should die, or alter her name by marriage then all my movables and chattels to be sold and equally divided amongst my children then alive and to them and their heirs forever.
Item: I give and bequeath unto my beloved sons John Smelser and Abraham Smelser this tract of (173) one hundred seventy three acres to them, Their separate heirs and assigns forever. Viz: it is a piece of land I bought of Edmand Smith to be parted as follows: Viz: A line to be run a cross equitably. The lower part joining where I now live to belong to my son John, and the upper part to Abraham, with a hundred acres of a new servey adjoining them to each, if there is four hundred acres in the servey, if not to be proportioned.
Item: I give and bequeath unto my beloved sons Steven Smelser and Paulser Smelser, a piece of land of two hundred and twenty five acres (225) it being the tract I now live on, a line being equitably run a cross the land. The lower part being one hundred twelve acres and half and joining John Pearey, To belong to Steven Smelser and his heirs and assigns for ever.
And the other half being where on I now live to belong to Paulser Smelser to him and his heirs and assigns for ever, with an equitable part of the new servey adjoining them both.
Item: I give and bequeath unto my beloved son Jessey Smelser to him his heirs and signs for ever a new servey of land joining William McLaland. And that my son Paulser Smelser shall pay out of his part of the Estate unto my son Jessey fifty pounds to make his part equal.
Item: I leave unto my daughter Betty two cows and calves, and ten pounds to be given her by my son John out of his part of the Estate.
I request that my three sons John, Steven, and Paulser may keep their acres as I have appointed them, and that John gives unto Abraham the first two year old colt from his mare and that Paulser gives unto Jessey the first two year old colt that comes from his mare but that if any accidents happeneth to eather or both the mares then this to be void.
I further order that my son Steven Smelser give unto my son Abraham fifty pound to make Abrahams part equal.
Item: I give and bequeath unto my two daughters Rebeccah and Mary Smelser my negro named Peter, that Rebeccah may keep the negro, paying Mary one-half the negroes value in cash, and I confirm each ones part to them or their assigns for if eather or both daughters die, her or their parts of the negro to be equally divided among my other children.
I Constitute and appoint to see this my last Will and Testament executed, Viz: My beloved wife Catherine Smelser, John Pearcy and John Sharp.
Before Wittness of this my last Will and Testament I have set my hand and seal, this seventh day of December, and in the year of our Lord one Thousand Seven hundred and Seventy seven (1777).
(Signed) Paulser Smelser.
Witness: Thomas Dooley, Michl. Carn, Thos. Campbell and Saml. Campbell
1778 - May 25 Bedford Co., VA Palser Smellser's Will proved on oath of Michael Carn (Will bk. 1 p. 305)
1778 - July 27 Bedford Co., VA Paulser Smelser's Will also proved by oath of Thomas Campbell; Will recorded. Certificate given for Catherine Smellser, John Pearcy and John Sharp as executors. Gross Souggs and Harry Buford securities for executors in the amount of L3000. (L=pounds) (Will Bk. 1 p. 305)
1778-82 - Bedford Co., VA Court Order Book 6 p. 164 John Pearcy and Catherine qualified as executor for Palser Smellser.
1778 - Sept. 25 Bedford Co., VA Inventory and Appraisal of "Palser" Smelser estate by Thomas Campbell and Nicholas Welsh. John Pearcy, John Sharp and Cath. Smelser co-executors. Value: L869.13.0 property includes negro Peter (L300), household furnishings, cotton and flax wheels; parcel of books; parcel of carpenter tools, farm equipment, 21 cattle, 16 sheep; 1 horse, 3 mares, 1 colt, old waggon recorded 26 Oct. 1778 (Court Order Bk. 6 p 208)(Will Bk 1 p 325)
1790-95 - Bedford Co., VA Court Order Book: Paulser Smelser's Estate - Executor's account ordered settled (Bk 10 p 100)

Records in Augusta County, VA

From Chalkley’s Augusta County Records:

    • Page 82.--14th January, 1754. Same (From Col. James Patton) to Ebenezer Westcott, 656 acres on Crabb Creek (see p. 64, supra). Cor. |Palser Smelser.
  • Page 262.--17th May, 1767. Ebenezer ( ) Wascoat, of South Carolina, and Jacob Shell, of Augusta, to Jacob Lorton. Ebenezer Wastcoat, late of Augusta County, but now of Berkeley County, South Carolina, sometime before his removal from Augusta County agreed to sell to Jacob a tract of 666 acres on Crab Creek, a branch of New River and received from Jacob £40, and afterwards (on 9th February, 1767) he gave a power of attorney to Jacob Shell to execute deeds to Jacob Lorton, purchased by Ebenezer [from] James Patton, 14th January, 1754; corner Palser Smallser. Delivered: Thos. Dunn by your order, October, 1767.
  • Page 251.--22d February, 1768. Jacob ( ) Lorton and Lydia ( ) to George Taylor, £85, 656 acres on Crab Creek of New River by a deed by Jacob Schull as attorney for Ebenezer Westcoat to said Jacob; corner Poulson Smelser. Delivered to Jno. King's letter, July, 1795.
  • Vol. 1 - MARCH, 1769 (A). - Palzer Smelzer vs. Frederick Stem.--Frederick Stem of New River, 1761. "Kept off by force of arms."

Records in Bedford County, VA

  • 1763-1771 Bedford Co., VA Court Order Book; Palser Smelser to view way for road; lawsuit against Abeshart and lawsuit against Johnson (Bk 3 p 201, 59-77).
  • 1772 Bedford Co., VA Court Order Book Paulser appt. overseer of road (Bk 4 p 25); Smelser Assignee vs Yocum (Bk 4 p 53-87).
  • 1772-1774 Bedford Co., VA Court Order Book Smellser vs Barksdale (Bk 5A pgs 2, 28); Smelser Assignee vs Yocum (Bk5A, p 13, 238).
  • 1773 Sept. 8 Fincastle Co., VA Paulser Smelser, plaintiff, vs John Ellswick, defendant, (Note: Ellswick another neighbor prob. s/o John & Lydia)(Source: "Annals of Southwest Virginia")
  • 1773 Fincastle Co., VA Daniel Trigg, Deputy Sheriff's list of delinquents: "Jacob" Smelser "supernumary" was collected 1774-1782 Bedford Co., VA Court Order Book Palser apptd to view road (Bk 7 p 130); Palser vs. Michael Yocum (Bk 6 p 66) Palser vs Yocum and Wood (Bk 6 p 64)
  • 1775 Paulser Smelser ad land surveyed in Bedford Co.
  • 1777 Thomas Madison noted that Paulser Smelzer had been paid the sum of L8.15 for three beeves for the Cherokee expedition. ("Early Adventures on Western Waters", pg. 269).
  1.   PAULSER SMELSER I was born pre 1733, died 25 September 1778 Bedford County, Virginia.
    b. ca. pre 1733 d. 25 Sept. 1778 Bedford Co., VA
    m. ca. 1756-57, Catherine b. ca. 1740 d. post 1820

    (Note: Several of Paulser's New River neighbors arrived from the Palatinate, Germany on Sept. 5, 1738 in Philadelphia on Winter Galley: Adam Wall (no wife/children), Casper Berger (d. 1755), Philip Harlas (d. 1772 wife Margaret and children listed in Will) and Johan Michael Preis(Price) (wife Margaret) d. 1802; other neighbors were Dunkards)

    Paulser was one of the earliest adventurers on the waters of Crab Creek in present Montgomery Co., VA. He first appeared in 1754 when he purchased part of the Patton tract of 1,096 acres.
    (Note: Augusta Co. formed 1738-45 from Orange Co.) On 12 Jan 1754 Augusta Co., VA Paulser paid James Patton 5 shillings for one year indenture on 440 acres (Bk. 11 p.441)(land surveyed by Patton in 1748; rest of survey was sold in 1749 to Widow Elswick (Lydia wife of John) and Ebenezer Westcoat.)

    Children of Paulser and Catherine Smelser

    John Smelser born about 1757
    Betsey Smelser born about 1760 m. James Pearcy
    Jesse Smelser born 1765-1777
    Rebecca Smelser born abt. 1768/69 m. Richard Gross
    Abraham Smelser born about 1772 m. Sally Smith
    Stephen Smelser born 1769-1771 m. Tabby Brown
    Paulser Smelser II born about 1766 m. Mary Gordon