Hertford County, North Carolina
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HarrellFamilies (Home Page)
Chapter 1 (The Early Harrells in America)
Chapter 3 (Harrells in Bertie & the Hertford County area)
Chapter 4 (Hertford County's 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Generations)
Chapter 5 (John T., Eley, Elijah Two, Elisah, Thomas Two & their descendants)
Chapter 6 (Nathan & Elizabeth's Known Descendants)
Chapter 7 (John [b. c. 1794] & Winnifred Harrell, 3rd Generation)
Chapter 8 (Josiah & Anna Harrell, 3rd Generation)
Chapter 9 (Elizabeth Harrell & Silas Parker, 3rd Generation)
Chapter 10 (Immigrants to the 3rd Generation of Hertford County Harrells)
Chapter 11 Chapter 11 (Immigrants to the 4th Generation of Hertford County Harrells)
There were at least two Samuel Harrells who settled in the Gates area of Chowan County and stayed there. They both had descendants who became Hertford County Harrells. I am calling them Samuel of Kent and Samuel of Chowan. The distinguishing labels are derived from their presumed places of birth.
There was a third Samuel, the son of John Harrell Jr. of Virginia, who appeared on a Chowan County deed, but I believe he settled in Bertie County so he is discussed in the next chapter. The third Samuel Harrell was identified in a 1739 deed as the son of John Harrell Junior of Virginia. The descendant-researchers of Samuel of Kent and Samuel of Chowan were pretty certain of the origins of their Samuels, and they do not consider their Samuels to be the son of a John Harrell. The question that needs an answer is who was the Samuel, son of John of Virginia, in the 1739 deed? John Jr./Sr. of Bertie County may have had a son named Samuel, but if so, he was not mentioned in John Jr./Sr.s will of 1759. This Samuel may well have been the Samuel Harrell in southern Bertie County with the other descendants of John of Nansemond County, Virginia. There was a Samuel who owned land in Bertie county, and appeared on the countys tax lists from 1757-1761, and again in 1774, which indicates he probably lived in Bertie County.
We know from Samuel of Kents descendants that he was living in the Gates area near Sunbury in the 1740s and early 1750s; we also know from Samuel of Chowans descendants, and from his 1761 will, that he was living in the same area during the same period of time. Samuel of Kent, however, was reported to have died around 1753so he should have been about 35 years older than Samuel of Chowan.
At this point, I will only discuss Samuel of Kent and Samuel of Chowan, and will consider Samuel the son of John in the next chapter with the Harrells in early Bertie County.
Samuel of Kent (b. 1663-d. c. 1753)
Samuel of Kent was reportedly on his farm near Sunbury from early on, but there is no record of its purchase in the Chowan County deeds. In fact, he apparently did not purchase or sell any land in the county with recorded deeds. There are three Chowan County deeds for a Samuel Harrell (they are dated 1737, 1740, and 1747), but they appear to be those of Samuel of Chowan, and are described in the following section.
As I have indicated earlier, our main source for identifying Samuel of Kent is in the collected papers of William Bernard Harrellin particular the record he extracted from his family Bible. The Biblical record indicates his immigrant ancestor, Samuel, was born in Kent County, England in 1663tradition claims he came with a couple of his brothers. He supposedly bought the original Harrell farm in [page 32] the Gates area, near Sunbury, and raised his family and died there in 1753. If I am able to confirm his immigrant status, he certainly would not have been one of the original Seven Harrell Brothers who came out of Nansemond County, but he would, nonetheless, have been one of the first Harrell settlers in the Albemarle area. William Bernard Harrells autobiography includes the following list of his ancestors:
James Harrell Born 1792, on a farm near Sunbury, North Carolina. Died 1858, Harrellsville, N. C. He was a brother of Abner Harrell for whom the town of Harrellsville was named, and who lived there most of his life. James Harrell was a soldier of the War of 1812. He was the son of
Samuel Harrell Born on the Harrell farm near Sunbury, 1750? He died at the same place in 1828? A large planter and slave-owner. He was a soldier in the Revolution. He was the son of
James Harrell Born 1708 on the Harrell Farm. Died at his home in 1790. Planter and Merchant, with a large country store. He was the son of
Samuel Harrell Born 1663 in Kent County, England. Original purchaser of the Harrell Farm, where he engaged largely in farming and also ran a store. He died there (cir.) 1753. This man is supposed to have originally spelled his name Harold, though after his coming to America, the name became spelled as at present.
William Bernard Harrell was the second son of James (born in 1792 on a farm near Sunbury). William Bernards grandfather was Samuel (born on the Harrell farm near Sunbury in 1750). His grandfather has been referred to as Samuel of Sunburyhe may also have been the person called Major Samuel. Samuel of Sunburys father was James Harrell, who was also born on the family farm in 1708 and died in 1790this James was probably the Abner referred to by Winborne as being on the 1740 Bertie County tax list.
What William Bernards records unfortunately do not reveal are the names of Samuel of Kents other childrenit is very probable that he had several. One or more of Samuel of Kents other sons could have been among the first settlers in the Hertford County area in the 1730s and 1740s. It is also very probable that Samuel of Kents son, James (born 1708), had more than one son, but their names are also not yet available, and, of course, one or more of these probable sons could have been among the early residents of the Hertford County area.
There is one additional reference that needs to be included in this discussion of Samuel of Sunbury and his father, Abner (born 1708)or perhaps, James Abner Harrell. In his history of Hertford County, Winborne made the following claim for Samuel of Sunburys son, Abner of Harrellsville (born 1790):
He [Abner, b. 1790] descended from one of the oldest families in the county. He was the son of Maj. Samuel Harrell, who resigned his military office in 1783. Samuel Harrell was a soldier in the War of 1776-1782, a member of the State Convention of 1788, and a son of Abner Harrell, a freeholder in Bertie County in 1740, as they appear from the Jury list of that county. Major Harrell left the following children; Noah, James, William B., Willis, Isaac, Andrew, and Abner, Mary and Nancy.
I think there is little doubt that William Bernards Samuel of Sunbury and Winbornes Major Samuel were one in the same person. This makes sense if the suggestion made earlier that Major Samuels father, referred to as Abner from time-to-time, was indeed James Abner Harrell, as Lellie et. al. have suggested in their work.
Winborne made an interesting observation when he places Abner (probably James Abner) in Bertie County in the 1740s, and his son, Major Samuel as a representative from Hertford County to the Hillsborough Convention in July of 1788 to consider the Bill of Rights and Constitution for the United States.
William Bernards records show that Samuel of Sunbury (born around 1750) died in 1828his will was signed February 13, 1811. In his 1811 will, Samuel of Sunbury named his children in the order below. He then carefully named his three youngest sons: Willis, Andrew, and Isaac. Then he named his five youngest children: Henry, Willis, Andrew, Elizabeth, and Isaac.  On the basis of his will, Samuel of Sunbury was the father of:
(with his first wife)
William Harrell born before 1786 died 1834
Mary Harrell Wilson born c. 1787
Noah Harrell born 1788 died 1849
Abner Harrell born 1790 died 1865
James Harrell born 1792 died 1858
Joseph Harrell born c. 1794 died 1820
Nancy Harrell born c. 1796 died 1858
(with his wife, Sally Bond Harrell)
Henry Harrell born about 1800 died between 1820 & 1833
Willis Harrell born 1802 died 1858
Andrew Harrell born 1805 died between 1850 & 1860
Elizabeth Harrell born about 1807 died
Isaac Harrell born 1808-1810 died 1862-1863
In Samuels 1811 will, Williams father left him the land he was already on beginning in the Horse Pool Swamp, then running up the Swamp to Moses Briggs Line, along said Briggs line into the Desert to the back line of Joseph Gordons line, containing 380 acres .
There was one William Harrell in the 1800 and 1810 censuses; there were four Williams at the time of the 1820 census; there were three William Harrells in 1830 (William, William H., and William Sen.); and there were three in 1840 (William, William Jr., and William Sr.). The following Williams are in the Gates Census for 1850:
1850 census entry, Gates Co., N. C.
1850 census entry, Gates Co., N. C.
1850 census entry, Gates Co., N. C.
If Major Samuels son, William, lived until the 1850 census, he would have been over 64 years of age. He was more than likely the William Sr., age 72 in 1850, as well as the other censuses listed just above. The only other William in 1850 who was close to Major Samuels son in age was William H. Harrell age 63William H. was the son of William who died in 1833 and was identified in his fathers will. William G. in 1850 may have been the son of William Sr. in both the 1840 and 1850 censuses.
Mary married John G. Wilson in Gates County on 12/6/1825he was 25 years of age.
They moved to Hertford County and remained there. Mary and her husband are described at greater length in chapter 10 along with Major Samuels other children who settled in Hertford County.
Noah was born on April 24, 1787. He married Sarah Goodman, and built a home on a portion of the original Harrell property around 1810the house was called Spring Hill. Noahs father left him 2 slaves, stock and furniture he already possessed, as well as notes and bonds worth $250, but there was no mention of land given to Noah in his fathers 1811 will. Noah and many of his descendants nonetheless stayed on the property for generations.
The property on which Noah built his house was located about five miles from Sunbury, and ten miles from Gatesville. The house was still standing in 1952. Noah and Sarahs children, grandchildren, and some of their great grandchildren were born in this place. Noah died there on January 24, 1849Sarah had died there in 1839.
Noahs will was signed on September 29, 1848, and in it he named five of his children (the names marked with an asterisk in the following list of his children were those mentioned in his 1848 will). The names of the children not mentioned in Noahs will were taken from Lellie Harrell Edwards et. al., Harrell Family Records.
Samuel Riddick Harrell* born February 24, 1812
Mary Harrell Bond* born August 10, 1814
Elbert Harrell Riddick* died 1880 (daughter)
Margaret A. Harrell born January 22, 1817
James A. Harrell* born June 24, 1819
Sarah E. Harrell born November 30, 1821
Anne C. Harrell Goodman* born November 22, 1824
Martha I. Harrell born January 28, 1828
Emily Frances Harrell born September 15, 1829
Virginia C. Harrell born July 3, 1831.
Noahs son, Samuel Riddick Harrell, died on July 27, 1864. He and his wife, Mary Vaughan, are buried on the home farm called Spring Hill.
Abner inherited two slaves and all the property already in his possession. He was already listed as a head of household in Gates County for the 1810 census, but by 1820 he had moved to Hertford County, and consequently he is discussed at greater length in chapter ten.
According to his fathers will, James inherited the land that I purchased of James Creecy, formerly belonging to David Rice, deceased. James did not stay on the farm in Gates County, however. He went off to fight in the War of 1812 and then soon after moved to Suffolk, Norfolk, and finally Hertford County, North Carolina. As a Hertford County resident, James and his descendants are covered in more detail in chapter ten.
Josephs father left him the lands purchased from Josiah Lassiter and Nathaniel Riddick consisting of 100 acres, and 100 acres on the west side of the deep branch, bounded by the lands of William Harrell (his brother) and Moses Briggs, and Horse Pool Swamp. He died in Gates County in 1820.
Nancy did not receive any of her parents land, but she did get personal property including two slaves, according to her fathers will.
According to one account, she never married, but another has her married to Moses Harrell on February 19, 1827because with her marriage, she did not change her last name, some may have assumed she never married.
Henrys inheritance included two parcels of land: the first was the balance of the land his father had purchased from David Riddick, which was adjoining the land of his brother, Joseph; and a piece of land his father had purchased form Joseph Gordon Esq., containing another 100 acres. Henry was born around 1800, and he probably died at a relatively young age.
Willis married Louisa Liles in Gates County on March 22, 1827, and they had several children as can be seen in the information from the 1850 census just below.
Willis stayed in touch with his family in Hertford County over the years. For instance, in early 1841, Willis sent his son, Edward , who was young and not well, to Murfreesboro to live with his Uncle James (b. 1792), but James had a large family and had just moved to Hertford County from Norfolk, and thus had little means to provide for a nephew. Consequently, young Edward was sent on to live with his aunt Mary Harrell Wilson up the streetshe had a large house and no children. Also in 1847, when Willis brother, James, returned from Hertford County to bury his second wife in the family cemetery on the old farm, Willis was still on the family farm. Part of Willis land was originally his brother, Abners inheritance, which Willis bought from him sometime between 1815 and 1820, when Abner moved to Hertford CountyWillis refers to this in his will years later. In 1850, Willis and Louisas family appeared as follows in the census.
1850 census entry, Gates Co., N. C.
Seven years after the above census entry, Willis W. Harrell wrote his willit was signed September 15, 1857, presented in the Gates County Court in February of 1858. In his will he named the following children: his youngest son, William Norfleet Harrell, his youngest daughter, Mary Louise Harrell, Edward R. Harrell, James Noah Harrell, and daughter, Marthy O. Hill. The executors to his will were sons Edward R. Harrell and James Noah Harrell.
Based on the 1850 census and Willis will, their children were as follows:
Edward R. Harrell born 1828
Sarah A. Harrell born 1830
James Noah Harrell born 1836
Martha Olivia Harrell Hill born 1839
Mary Louise Harrell born 1847
William Norfleet Harrell born 1850
Edward R. Harrell (b. 1828)
Edward R. and his brother, J. Noah, divided equally their fathers farm of approximately 500 acres according the Willis 1858 will.
Edward was sent to train as a merchant with his uncles James Harrell and John G. Wilson in Murfreesboro, Hertford County. He was living with his Uncle Isaac in Gates County for the 1850 census. He was listed as 22 years of age, a merchant with $500 worth of property.
Sarah A. Harrell (b. 1830)
James Noah Harrell (b. 1836)
It appears from his fathers entry in the 1850 census, that James was better known as Noah. He should have inherited about 250 acres from his father as did his brother Edward R. Harrell.
Martha Olivia Harrell Hill (b. 1839)
Martha Harrell married Washington L. Hill in Gates County on June 17, 1856.
Mary Louise Harrell (b. 1847)
William Norfleet Harrell (b. 1850)
William N. was only eight years old when his father died in 1858.
Samuel of Sunburys (Major Samuel) son, Andrew Harrell, married Julia Brothers in Gates on December 13, 1826, and he was still married to her in 1850. (This means the Andrew Harrell who married Elizabeth Rice in Gates on March 27, 1830 was a different person.)
1850 census entry, Gates Co., N. C.
Andrew and Julia Harrells children are listed below:
William H. Harrell (b. 1828)
Sarena A. Harrell (b. 1828)
Elizabeth F. Harrell (b. 1833)
Clenton E. Harrell (b. 1835)
Andrew J. Harrell (b. 1836)
Sarah Harrell (b. 1840)
Isaac S. Harrell (b. 1841)
Riddick H. Harrell (b. 1843)
Lellie et. al. state that Major Samuels daughter, Elizabeth, married a Mr. Briggs, but the Gates County marriage records only show that Elizabeth Copeland married Benjamin Briggs in 1822, and Elizabeth Jones married Charles Briggs in 1828. If one of these Elizabeths was Major Samuels daughter, it would have been her second marriageconsidering her age, the first marriage would have been very short. There is no Benjamin or Charles Briggs in the 1850 census for Gates or adjacent counties. The 1850 census does have the following entry, however, for an Elizabeth Briggs, and her age was very close to that of Samuel of Sunburys daughter.
1850 census entry, Gates Co., N. C.
If I have the correct Elizabeth Harrell Briggs, then her children were as follows:
Joseph Briggs (b. 1828)
Andrew J. Briggs (b. 1831)
Sarah E. Briggs (b. 1835)
After Isaacs mother died, the family farm was to be divided among Samuels three youngest sons: Willis, Andrew, and Isaac.
Isaac married Mary E. Hinton in Gates County February 25, 1836. By 1850, their household appeared as follows.
1850 census entry, Gates Co., N. C.
Edward R. Harrell was Isaacs nephew, a son of Willis, who had gone to work in Murfreesboro, Hertford County, with his Uncles James Harrell and John G. Wilson who were merchants.
Isaac S. Harrell wrote his will on November 20, 1862. In addition to the children listed in the 1850 census, he named Mills Roberts Harrell, Isaac Samuel Harrell, and Dianna Margaret and Florence Harrell. Isaac left the plantation on which he was living to his sons Mills Roberts and Isaac Samuel. He also refers to his daughters Martha Louisa and Mary Ann Hills. Isaac S. and Mary E. Harrells children were as follows.
Martha Louisa Harrell Hill (b. 1838)
Martha L. Harrell married Washington L. Hill in Gates County on June 17, 1856.
Mary Ann Harrell Hill (b. 1841)
Henry B. Harrell (b. 1848)
Mills Robert Harrell
Samuel Isaac Harrell (b. 1860)
Isaac and Marys son, Samuel Isaac Harrell (1860-1928), married Isa Costen, and they had six children. Their third child was Isaac Samuel Harrell.
Isaac Samuel Harrell (b. 1894)
Isaac Samuel Harrell (1894-1927) was raised in the Sunbury area in Gates County, North Carolina. Isaac was a professor and historian who wrote a history of Gates County, among other things.
Dianna Margaret Harrell
The other Samuel Harrell who resided in the Gates area of Chowan County also left numerous descendants therebut, in addition, he was born in the area, and can be called Samuel of Chowan. He was the person Orrin F. Harrell called Samuel I. He was the Samuel Harrell, son of Thomas Harrell, and he was identified as such in a 1769 Chowan County deed.
The 1769 Chowan County deed that provides a link across three generations connects Samuel of Chowan to the area at a very early ageit is a deed reflecting the sale of a piece of land by Samuels son, Samuel Jr., to his brother, Isaac Harrell. When Samuel Jr. sold his land, he described it as follows: and is part of a larger tract granted to John More and by him sold to Thomas Harrell and by his will given to Samuel Harrell Father to Samuel Harrell Party to these present, and given by the Fathers Last Will to said Samuel. The Thomas Harrell referred to in the deed was probably one of the Thomas Harrells (Harrold) on the 1704 tax list for Nansemond County, Virginiaprobably the younger of the two. Thomas Harrell continued to buy land in the area; he did so in 1742, 1744, 1748, and perhaps 1754.
Samuel of Chowan, the son of Thomas Harrell, was born around 1700 and probably in Nansemond County, Virginia. He was more than likely one of the original Seven Harrell Brothers who settled in North Carolina. (Keeping in mind that a number of the other Brothers were sons of John Harrell of Virginia.) Samuel of Chowans father, Thomas, may not have actually lived in the area, in spite of the amount of property he purchased there. Which is why Samuel of Chowan qualifies as a first Harrell resident of North Carolina, even though Thomas was of the same generation as Samuel of Kent who was discussed in the previous section.
In the previous section of this chapter, I mentioned there were three deeds reflecting the purchase of land in the area by a Samuel Harrell, and that I assumed all three were made by Samuel of Chowan and not Samuel of Kent. I will continue to operate on that working assumption until evidence to the contrary surfaces.
In addition to the land Samuel of Chowan inherited form his father, Thomas, he purchased 160 acres from Will Ward on November 29, 1737this tract was located at the head of Oyster Tong Branch and was part of a tract of land granted to John Moore on November 17, 1700. Then in 1741, Samuel of Chowan purchased another 100 acres from Abraham Hill, and in 1747 he purchased another 100 acres in the same area from John Rice, who had purchased it from Abraham Hill. (Samuel of Chowan left part of the land purchased from John Moore to his son, Isaac Sr. in his 1761 will.)
Samuel of Chowans will was recorded in Chowan County on October 1, 1761. In the will he specified his sons William, Isaac, Abraham, Samuel, and his daughters Mary and Martha. His sons, William and Isaac, were the executors, and Dempsey Harrell was a witness. I assume the names listed in the will were in order of birthso his children were:
In his 1761 will, Samuel Chowan gave his son, William, title to the land he was already living on. William apparently passed this land on to his youngest son, Samuel (born around 1760). William wrote his will on February 18, 1762, and in it he named his wife, Elizabeth, and youngest son, Samuel. His plantation was to be used by his wife, and then go to his son, Samuel. If Samuel was not of age, William wanted his brother, Abraham, to care for his youngest son until he was of age. Williams estate settlement was presented at the October Term, 1766, in Chowan County Court, and provided the names of his older children. They were Henry, Abner, Ruth, and Abselah. I do not think all of his older children were of age in 1762, but it is possible.
William and Elizabeths children were as follows.
There were two recorded marriages in Gates County for a Henry Harrellbut the dates seem a bit early for Williams son, assuming I have estimated his birth year correctly. The first shows that Henry Harrell married Elizabeth Jurnigan in Gates County on June 10, 1851. The second record shows that Henry Harrell married Sarah E. Landing February 10, 1857.
Samuel inherited his parents farm after coming of age and leaving his uncle Abrahams care. He married Elvey Riddick in Gates County on May 30, 1781, and then Sarah Riddick on August 6, 1798. Samuel and Sarah moved their family to Edgecombe County around 1801. Samuels will names the following children: Thaney, Enos, Elisha, Lewis, David, and Polly Brinkley.
Samuels son, David, was born in Gates County on September 23, 1793. He married Charlotty Webb in Edgecombe County, and David died there on September 22, 1860. David and Charlotty had the following children: Asa (b. 1818), Lewis (b. 1820), Wiley (b. 1822), John W. (b. 1824, Reubin D. (b. 1825), Luzanna (b. 1827), Sally Ann Gay (b. 1829), Elisha (b. 1834), and Mary Ann (b. 1836).
Orrin F. Harrell descended from William (born 1715), and then Williams son, Samuel (born around 1760), who died around 1825 in Edgecombe County. Orrin F. Harrell and Margaret Harrell Williams both descend from Samuels son Davidtheir works have been cited above and detail the connections. Orrin moved to Hertford County as a boy with his family around the mid-1930s.
Isaac inherited the land he was living on in 1761, and a piece of land in Oystertong Neck that his father, Samuel of Chowan, had bought from Will Ward of Nansemond County in 1737a tract of land granted to John Moore by a patent dated November 17, 1700. Isaac married Judith, but probably not in Chowan County.
On December 15, 1768, Isaac Sr. bought 150 acres from his brother, Samuel Juniorit was part of a tract that was originally granted to John Moore, and then sold to Isaac Sr.s grandfather, Thomas, and then willed to Isaac Sr.s father, Samuel of Chowan, and then willed to Samuel Junior. The purchase included a small 15 acre tract adjacent to Isaacs other land.
Isaac Sr. wrote his will on March 12, 1805, and it was probated at the November County Court of Pleas, 1805. Isaac Sr. left his sons, David and Noah, and his daughters, Leah Hinton, Edith Groves, Rhoday Parker, and Elanor Eure, five shillings each as their full share of his estate. He provided for his wife, Judith, and named grandchildren, John Lewis Hinton, son of Leah; granddaughter, Christain Jones, and Absilla and Thomas Trotman, children of Christian Trotman. He left two tracts of land and 11 slaves to his son, Isaac JuniorIsaac Jr. was also executor for his fathers will. Based on his will, Isaac Sr.s children were as follows:
There are two recorded marriages for a David Harrell in Gates County. The first shows David Harrell and Celia Hunter getting married in Gates County on January 15, 1778; the second shows David marrying Ann Gatling in Gates County on November 8, 1796.
A Noah Harrell married Mary Riddick in Gates County on October 11, 1787.
Isaac Sr. gave Noah 80 acres on Bennetts Creek Road on April 16, 1790. Noah received more land in 1806 when his younger brother, Isaac Jr., died and left his entire estate to Noah.
Leah married William Lewis in Gates County on October 15, 1785. Leah Lewis then married William Hinton Jr. in Gates County on November 23, 1797.
Leahs children included John Lewis who was mentioned in her fathers 1805 will. Isaac Sr. left his grandson a slave, named Jack, to be hired out and the money used to school John Lewis Hinton.
Isaac Sr.s daughter, Rodey married Joseph Parker in Gates County on March 16, 1801.
According to Isaac Sr.s will, he had two grandchildren by the names of Absilla and Thomas Trotman. On the basis of this, I assume he had a daughter who married a Mr. Trotman.
Isaac Sr. gave Junior title to the Home Plantation on August 11, 1795. This gift was also listed in Isaac Sr.s 1805 will as two tracts of land. One was a tract purchased by Isaac Sr. from Aaron Lassiter, and the other from Holladay Walton.
Isaac Jr. did not enjoy his inheritance for long, because he died the year after his fathers death. He did not marry, but according to his will, he had someone in his life. His will is dated November 15, 1806, and it was probated in the November Court of that same year. He left one thousand dollars to Sarah Brinkley, now living with me . The remainder of his estate went to his brother, Noah.
Samuel of Chowan left his son, Abraham, the plantation he was already living on in 1761. In 1762, Abraham was given the responsibility of caring for his brother, Williams, youngest son, Samuel.
By the 1790 tax list, he was listed with 3 males over 16 years of age; 3 males under the age of 16; 3 females; and 7 slaves. Abrahams son, David, was married by 1790, and was listed in his own householdTheophilus, Charles, and Abraham were probably still among those listed in Abrahams household.
Abraham wrote his will on March 18, 1799. At that time he named his wife and children as follows: wife, Mary; sons, David, Theophilus, Charles, and Abraham; daughters, Wines and Fanny Alphim. Mary may not have been his first wifeAbraham Harrell married Mary Briggs on December 17, 1803. Abrahams son, David, presented the will at the August Court of 1810.
There were two David Harrells married in the Gates area around the time Abrahams David would have been available for such an eventone or both marriages were probably his. David would have been pretty young, but he may have married Celia Hunter on January 15, 1787. It is more probable that he was the David who married Ann Gatling on November 8, 1796, which, of course, does not eliminate the possibility he was married to Celia first. He probably married Celia in 1787 because by the 1790 census, David was listed with: 1 male over 16 (himself); one male under 16 (their first son); 2 females (Celia and their first daughter); and 7 slaves.
Abrahams son, David Sr. (born 1770-1775) relocated to Hertford County between 1810 and 1815. Consequently, Abraham has many descendants who are still residents of Hertford County, and many of them are discussed in the section on David in chapter 10.
Theophilus married Mary Gwinn in Gates County on October 26, 1797.
Charles married Mary Carter on November 27, 1806.
Abraham Jr. married Priscilla Parker on December 7, 1793. According to his fathers will, Abraham Jr. inherited the family plantation and all adjoining lands after the widowhood of his mother.
Fanney Harrell married Hezekiah Alphin in Gates County on February 20, 1787.
Samuel Jr. inherited the family farm according to his fathers 1761 willafter his mother had used the property during her widowhood. He was the third generation in his family to own the family plantationfirst his grandfather, Thomas, then his father, Samuel of Chowan.
Samuel Jr. and his wife Mary, sold the family farm on December 15, 1768. The farm stayed in the family, however, because it was sold to Samuel Jr.s brother, Isaac Senior. They sold 150 acres of land and an additional 15 acre tract to Isaac Senior. In addition, on the same day, Samuel Jr. and his wife Mary sold another 15 acres to Ezekiel Lassiter.
In addition to Samuel of Kent and Samuel of Chowan, son of Thomas, there were other early Harrells in the Gates areathey may have been brothers, or cousins, or even children of the first two Samuels. In any case, they were in the right place at the right time and they just need to be connected to the other Harrells.
Jethro first appeared in county documents when he bought 65 acres on the head of Cypress Swamp in Chowan County on January 2, 1756 from Robert Knight. He is on the Hertford County tax lists of 1769 and 1770. By 1779, without moving, he became a resident of the new Gates County, and his will was recorded there.
Jethro wrote his will on August 13, 1781. In it, he named: his wife, Ann; sons, the eldest, John, and the youngest, Reuben; daughters, Nancy Vann, Milley Hargnoucs, Betty Maners, and Mary Harrell. The executors of his will were his son, John, and son-in-law, George Hargman. Jethro and Anns children included the following:
Milley married George Hargmans, who was an executor in her fathers will.
Another unattached early Harrell in the Gates area was Demsey. He was cut to Hertford County and appeared on the 1770 tax list for that county. He was not on the 1768 and 1769 tax lists. One possibility is he just came of age in 1770, and thus would have been born around 1749there are, of course, many other possibilities.
Demsey Harrell wrote his will on October 15, 1808, thus it was recorded in Gates County. He gave his son, Thomas, the plantation he was already living on; it was called the Beasley Land and it was adjacent to the land of Burrell Griffith. Demsey gave his son, George, two pieces of land; one he had bought from David Harrell, and the other from Benjamin Harrell. David and Benjamin may well have been Demseys brothers. He also named his wife, Mary, and daughter, Elizabeth Harrell. Demseys will was not probated until the February Court of 1818.
Demsey and Marys children were probably of age by 1808, and thus born before 1787. They included the following.
There is a will recorded in Chowan County for Absolem Harrell; it was written on July 9, 1789. In his will he names his daughters, Mary and Amey Harrell; his son, William; James Garrett and son, William were the executors. He also identified his grandson, David Harrell; his grandchildren, William and Mary Harrell; and his son, Adam, and daughter, Elizabeth Daniel. His children were probably of age when his will was written, and thus born before 1768. They included the following.
Absolems grandchildren at the writing of his will were:
Thomas was buying land in Chowan County as early as 1742, and he continued to make purchases until 1754there are six recorded deeds for purchases by a Thomas Harrell. The only recorded sale of land was in 1758. The sale was to Peter Harrell, who was his son.
It is easier to establish who Thomas children were than to locate his father. But there is one cluea 1758 deed. Hollowell describes it as follows:
Thomas Harrell (son of Edward) of Chowan Co. made a gift deed to son Peter Harrell of Chowan Co. 34 acres Love and affection to son Peter Harrell land on South west side of Mouth of Cypress Swamp. March 29, 1758 [Chowan Co. book H, page 270]
While Thomas and his land were temporarily a part of Hertford County, he and two other Thomas Harrells appeared on the Murfrees tax lists for 1768-1770 (see Table 3 on page 19 above). I believe the first Thomas on the tax list was the son of Adam, who lived on the southwest side of the Chowan River. The other two Thomases were in the Gates area of Hertford Countythey were Thomas Harrell (The Younger), and Thomas Harrell Junior. Thomas The Younger is on the tax lists for 1768-1770, while Thomas Jr. made the list in 1770 for the first time. This, of course, suggests that Thomas The Younger was indeed the older of the two. There is the possibility that the nick-name The Younger refers to a relationship to one of the Thomas Harrells back in Nansemond County, but that is pure speculation at this point. I believe Thomas The Younger was the Thomas who purchased most if not all of the land listed in the Chowan County deeds from 1742-1754, and who wrote his will in Gates County in 1808.
If my assumptions are correct, Thomas The Youngers children can be identified by his 1758 deed, and his 1808 will. If the 1758 deed is true, then Thomas was son of Edward and can be connected. But Thomas was the father of Peter in any case.
As pointed out, one of the Thomas Harrells wrote his will on March 22, 1808, which made it a Gates County will. According to his will, his wifes name was Ann, and his sons were Elijah and Elisha, and his daughters were, Edy, Rebecca, Mary, and Milley. All of Thomas land was given to Elijah and Elisahwhich suggests they were of age at the time, and thus born before 1787.
Thomas children according to his 1758 deed and 1808 will were as follows:
Peter by the 1758 deed
Elijah by the 1808 will
Elisha by the 1808 will
Edy by the 1808 will
Rebecca by the 1808 will
Mary by the 1808 will
Milley by the 1808 will
Peter was not mentioned in his fathers 1808 will because he had died in 1802.
There may have been other children not mentioned in the will. For instance, if we consider the 1824 will of another Thomas Harrell, then there is a possibility of several additional children. In his 1824 will Thomas identifies his brothers and a sister. They are Elijah, Elisha, Josiah, and Penny Pilandtwo of the four match by name the children in the 1808 will. But the Thomas who died in 1824, may have been a nephew of the older Thomas (Thomas The Younger). Thomas The Younger may have had a brother who also named two of his sons Elijah and Elisha. The Thomas who wrote his will in 1824 may simply then have named one of his cousins, Elisha, and not the others.
In the following list of Thomas The Youngers children, I have only included those in Thomas 1758 deed, and his 1808 willthus leaving the Thomas who died in 1824 and his siblings separate for now. The estimated birth years for his children are very tentative. In the 1790 census, Thomass household contained two males over 16 years of age, and three females. The two males may have been Thomas and his son Elijah. Peter was the head of his own household in 1790, and there was also a head of household named Elisha, who was probably Thomas other son. The three females in 1790, were probably Thomas wife, Ann, and two of their daughters. In 1790, Peter had a male over 16 living with him who was probably his oldest son. Peter also had several daughters, which suggests he had been married for more than 15 years. That would normally mean he was somewhere around the ages of 35 to 40 in 1790. So Peter was probably born around 1750 to 1755. We also know that Peters younger brother, who was still living with their parents in 1790, was over 16 years of age at the timeand thus born before 1774. Using just these rough parameters, I have assigned estimated birth years to Thomas and Anns children.
Peter was more than likely Thomas and Anns oldest son, and as I have pointed out above, he got a gift deed from his father, Thomas Harrell, in 1758.
Peter was also in the Gates area that became part of Hertford County from 1759 to 1779, and, consequently, he appears on the William Murfrees Tax Lists for that county in 1768 (see Table 3, page 18).
Peters will was written in Gates County in 1802. His will was entered at the August Court of Pleas, Gates County, 1802. Peters will included the name of his wife, Pleasant; the names of their sons Peter and Elisha; he made a reference to his eight daughters, but only named Mary, Annie, Judith, Elizabeth, Pleasant, Nancy, and Penelope. He did, however, include the names of some grandchildrennamely Peter Eure and Hillory Eure. This suggests he had a deceased daughter who had married a Mr. Eure. The only marriage I could find for a Harrell marrying an Eure in Gates County before the 1802 will, was a Martha Harrell who married Luton Eure on October 10, 1787. This would account for the two grandchildren who were Eures.
Peter Harrell Jr. married Martha Williams in Gates County on December 5, 1796.
An Elisah Harrell married Pennia Eure in Gates County on December 18, 1786. This was probably the Elisah in the 1790 census, with a young family.
An Edey Harrell married Frederick Farow in Gates County on August 16, 1783.
A Rebecca Harrell married William Landing in Gates County on July 28, 1804.
Several Mary Harrells married in Gates County during the period of time when Thomas children would have come of age.
A Milly Harrell married Hilson Williams in Gates County on August 10, 1798.
I suggested above when describing the Thomas Harrell (called Thomas The Younger) who died in 1808, that he probably was related to the Thomas under discussion in this sectionthe one who died in 1824because Thomas The Younger had two sons named Elijah and Elisha, and this Thomas had two brothers by the same names. This circumstance certainly presses one to conclude that this Thomas was Thomas Jr., son of Thomas The Younger, but the overall match of siblings does not warrant that conclusion yet.
The will of Thomas Harrell described here was entered at the Gates County February Court in 1824it was written on January 8 of that year. Thomas was apparently young, and had not married. He left his brother, Elisha $225; his brother, Josiah $200; his sister, Penny Piland $5; his cousin, Elisha a cow; and his brother, Elijah all the rest. His cousin, Elisha was the executor for the will. Thomas siblings were:
This may have been the Josiah Harrell who died in 1825, and is described in the section just below.
Penny Harrell Piland
Penelope Harrell married Mills Piland in Gates County on March 26, 1819.
When Thomas Harrell wrote his will in 1824, he identified his brothers, sister, and a cousinone of his brothers was named Josiah. There is a good possibility Thomas brother, Josiah, was the person who married Judith Fryer in 1788, and wrote his will in 1823. There is another possibility, howeverthere is the possibility that the Josiah who died in Gates County in 1825 was a transplant from Bertie County. In fact, that is the conclusion Hollowell came to in her family research.
Hollowell has connected this Josiah Harrell to John Harrell Jr./Sr. of Bertie County in the following manner:
1. John Harrell, Sr.came from Nansemond Co., Va. to now Gates Co. b. about 1670.
2. John Harrell, Jr. (later Sr.) born about 1695, will probated April 1759, married Grace.
3. Josiah Harrell I born about 1730, will probated November 1773, married Ann around 1760.
4. Josiah Harrell II born about 1763, will probated February 1825, married Judith Fryer of Gates
County on September 26, 1788.
Hollowell may have been correct in concluding that Josiah of Gates (her Josiah II) was the son of Josiah of Bertie (her Josiah I), but I find it a bit harder to make the connection. Josiah, son of Josiah of Bertie, may have left Bertie County, but after the death of Josiah of Bertie in 1773, there were still tracks from a Josiah Harrell in Bertie County. For instance, Josiah Harrell married Mary Ann Gardner in Bertie County on December 13, 1777; Josiah Harrell married Sarah Harrell in Bertie County on September 21, 1778; and in the Bertie County 1790 census a Josiah Harrell was a head of household, but he was alone (there was no Josiah in Hertford County in 1790, but there was a Josiah Harrell born in Hertford County in 1798, see chapter 8).
It is not likely the references to Josiah in Bertie County in the late 1770s and 1790 have any thing to do with the Josiah who married Julia Fryer in Gates County on September 26, 1788. The Josiah Harrell of Gates County may have been the son of John Jr./Sr. of Bertie County, but I think it is still just a possibility; not a certainty.
What ever his origins were, the Josiah Harrell who was in Gates County for the North Carolina State census, 1784-1787, had the following household:
1, male 21-60 years of age
2, males under 21 and over 60 years of age
3, females of any age
The family described in 1787 seems a bit too mature for Josiah and Judith who married in Gates County on September 26, 1788. It is possible Judith was not Josiahs first wife. It is also possible the Josiah and his family living in Gates County in 1787 was not the same Josiah who married Judith in 1788.
The household described as Josiahs in the 1790 U. S. census for Gates County was probably the same household described in 1787, but one of the young males counted in 1787 was gone.
1, white male over 16
1, white male under 16
3, white females
In the 1800 census, Josiah and Judiths family appeared as follows:
1, white male under 10
1, white male 16-26
1, white male over 45
3, white females under 10
1, white female 10-16
1, white female 16-26
1, white female 26-45
Their second son was born between 1790 and 1800, and they have more young females living with them than can be accounted for in his will. (Could the son born between 1790 and 1800 have been the Josiah Harrell born 1798 and a resident of Hertford County? See chapter 8.)
Josiah Harrell wrote his will on November 10, 1823 in Gates County. He gave his wife, Judith, the plantation they were living on and all the land he purchased from Henry Copeland. His son, Samuel, got the land after Judith; and his son William got the tract of land he purchased from Henry Copeland. Josiahs sons, William and Samuel, got additional land purchased from Samuel Rice. His daughter, Arcadia Jones, was also named. The will was presented at the February Court on 1825. Josiah and Judiths children were as follows.
Arcadia married John Jones in Gates County on February 8, 1813.
 Chowan County deed, Book C-2, pages 64-65.
 William Bernard Harrell, Private Collections, P.318, Harrell Papers, North Carolina Division of Archives and History.
 Winborne, History of Hertford County, page 196.
 Winborne, History of Hertford County, page 196 and 56. I should point out, on page 57, Winborne stated, Maj. Samuel Harrell was on the jury list in Bertie in 1740, This is a mistake, He means Major Samuels father, Abner, was on the 1740 Bertie list. Major Samuel, of course, was not yet born in 1740. Winborne states it correctly on page 196 with the following, , and a son of Abner Harrell, a freeholder in Bertie Count in 1740, as appears from the jury list of that county.
 Gates County will, Book 2, page 64.
 Gates County will, Book 2, page 352.
 Much of this information on Noah Harrell is drawn from the work of three of his descendants: Lellie Harrell Edwards, Katherine Edwards Meech, and Travis Meech Peters, Harrell Family Records, 1952, Norfolk, Virginia.
 Gates County will, Book 3, page 107.
 For his family see Tylers Cyclopedia of Virginia Biography, 1915, vol. 4, page 560, and vol. 5, page 561.
 See Account of Sales in Gates County 1816-1832, page 105, at the North Caroline State Archives.
 The information contained in the list of Samuels children that follows his will in the papers of William Bernard Harrell state that Nancy never married. As evidence for this they cite her 1858 will (Gates County, Book 3, page 232). Lellie et. al., on the other hand, claim Nancy married Moses Harrell on February 19, 1827, and also cite her will carrying the date July 13, 1858. I could not find the marriage of Nancy and Moses around 1827 in the marriage records of Chowan, Bertie, or Gates Countiesthey could have married in Hertford where the records are lost. A Moses B. Harrell married Ann Harrell in Gates County on March 31, 1823. There was a Moses B. Harrell in the 1830, Gates County census, page 111. There is no Moses in Gates for the 1840 or 1850 censuses.
 William Bernard Harrells autobiography, pages 30, and 44-45, Harrell Papers, Private Collections, no. P.318, North Carolina Division of Archives and History.
 Gates County will, Book 3, pages 225-226.
 Gates County wills, Book 3, page 290.
 Isaac S. Harrell, Gates County to 1860, in History of Gates County, (Gates County Arts Council Bicentennial Committee, Gatesville, N. C., 1976), page 1.
 Chowan County deed, 1769, Book 0-1, pages 77-78.
 Chowan County deeds, 1737, Book W, pages 363-364; 1741, Book C-2, pages 120-121; 1747, Book E, pages 201-203.
 A copy of the will is in Margaret Harrell Williams, The Harrell Family, page 12; it was taken from Edgecombe Wills, film CR 037.801.14.
 The information on Samuels descendants is taken from the work of Orrin F. Harrell, and based on his family documents.
 Chowan County deed, 1768, Book 0-1, pages 77-78.
 Gates County will, 1805, Book 1, pages 221-222.
 Gates County deed, 1790, Book 2, page 151; will, 1806, Book 1, page 234.
 Gates County deed, 1795, Book 3, page 268.
 Gates County will, 1806, Book 1, page 234.
 Chowan County deed, 1768, Book 0-1, pages 77-78; and Book 0-1, pages 79-80.
 Chowan County deed, Book H-1, page 158.
 Gates County will, Book 1, pages 36-38.
 Gates County will, Book 2, page 74.
 Chowan County will in Hathaway, Abstract of Wills, North Carolina Register, vol. I, no. 4, page 550.
 Chowan County deeds, 1742, Book A-1, page 185; 1744, Book A-1, page 283 & 284; 1748, Book E, pages 301-302; 1754, Book G-1, page 118; 1758, Book H-1, page 270.
 The Harrell Family of Gates County, Abstracts of Deeds, compiled by Lucy Elliott Hollowell of Woodland, North Carolina, March 1968.
 Gates County will, 1808, Book 2, page 26.
 Chowan County deed, Book H, page 270.
 Gates County will, Book 1, page 194.
 Lucy Elliott Hollowell, The Harrell Family of Gates County.
 Gates County will, 1825, Book 2, pages 230-231.
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