John Palmer

#1430, b. after 1719/20
Father-Can*James[?] Palmer b. c 1707/8, d. c 1793
     John Palmer was born after 1719/20. He was the son of James[?] Palmer. John Palmer married (--?--) (--?--).
     John owned property in 1747 on the Cat Branch of Willis River, Goochland/Buckingham Co., Virginia, neighbors were Henry Cary, Gent., Job Thomas, Orlando Hughes, Edmund Gray.


He also signed petitions, paid tithes, and conducted various other activities during his life in Buckingham County, Virginia.


Questions on this line.

There is a marriage record, dated 31-03-1791, for John Palmer & Elizebeth Edwards.
Buckingham County, VA Marriages As performed by Rev. Rene Chastain, Jr: Starting in 1786. Was this a son, cousin?

Could this be Elizabeth JOHNSON who was born about 1733 in Hanover County, Virginia. She resided in 1800 in Buckingham County, Virginia. She is a widow on the tax lists in 1800. Neighbors Isaac PALMER, Joseph PALMER, John PALMER, William PALMER and Isham PALMER were probably her sons.

There are some interesting Road Orders that involve John Palmer, including:

Albemarle co., Virginia, 13 March 1746.
13 March 1746 O.S., p. 245
Road./.
Ordered William Allen be Overseer of the Horn Quarter Road to the County Line and that the Male Tithables of Joseph Smith Robert King Reynee Shatteen William Howell Joseph Adcock William & Joseph Crie Robert Holt Anthony Sharroon Mathew Earps Patrick Obryan John Palmer John Hubard and William Sands do work Under the said William Allen in Clearing the Same./.

Albemarle County, Virginia Road Orders, 1744-1748
10 March 1747 O.S., p. 344
Road./.
Reny. Shatteen is Appointed Surveyor of the Horn Quarter Road from the County line to Glovers
Road in the room of William Allen and the Tithables of John Parmer Joseph Adcock Robert
King Joseph Smith John Carnys William Carnys Aaron Carver Thomas Gresham Robert Holt
Archibald Cary and David Bell do work under the said Shatteen on the said Road./.

Other interesting references include:

Deed book 6, pg. 331, Cumberland Co., VA. This indenture made this twenty second day of August in the year of our Lord Christ one thousand seven hundred and eighty five...John Scruggs and Kezia his wife of the county of Buckingham of the one part and Mary Scruggs of the county of Cumberland of the other part...a certain tract of land lying on Cat Branch in the counties of Cumberland and Buckingham containing one hundred fifty acres more or less given to the said John Scruggs by his father Drury Scruggs by deed recorded in the County of Buckingham and joining the lines of John Hopson, John Palmer, Robert Brown and George Keeling...John appears on the tax rolls in 1794. Keziah is shown as the head of household in 1797.

Deed, 6 July 1742, Henry Cary of Henrico County, Gentlemen, to Benjamin Harrison of Goochland County, Planter, for 10 shillings current money, 400 acres on both sides "Willis River in the County of Goochland near Horn Quarter Creek," being part of 17,000 acres granted said Henry Cary by patent of 12 July 1738. Also on 6 July 1742, Cary sold Alexander Trent, for £400, 1040 acres of this same patent on Willis River (Goochland Co., Va., Book 4, pp. 29, 13).


Although Nixon Palmer (#808) is the earliest proven ancestor in this line, there is strong evidence that his father was one John Palmer of Buckingham County.

At one time, John Palmer was thought to be married to Elizabeth Lowe (Tyler) Bowcock. However, this does not fit this John Palmer for several reasons, the primary reason being that John and Elizabeth Tyler Lowe had only daughters, (Mary Barradill, who married first her cousin, Lewis Tyler, and secondly Peter Stubbs, Catherine, who married Joseph Fuqua, and Elizabeth) no sons. Also, that John Palmer was a lawyer, and bursar of William and Mary College. He died in 1760.

This Joseph Fuqua was the nephew of the Joseph Fuqua who married Anna Sampson, and whose daughter, Bridget (#2042) married John Beasley (#2042). Bridget and John's daughter was married to Nixon Palmer (#808). Thus, there is a relationship with the Williamsburg Palmers, but only in a collateral sense.

Unfortunately, because Buckingham Counties records burned in a courthouse fire in the mid-1860s, records relating to Buckingham are only available from other sources. These include land patents sent to the colony or commonwealth, petitions sent to the Burgesses or legislative bodies, court cases and probates relating to land or persons in other counties. For example, the will of John Beasley (#2041) references land in Amherst County. It is possible that this will/probate was copied to that county.

     It is important to state that "Buckingham" became a county in 1761. It was created from Albemarle, which was created from Goochland in 1744. Goochland was created from Henrico in 1728. Cumberland, immediately east of Buckingham, was formed from Buckingham and Goochland in 1748. Immediately to the south, Prince Edward was formed from Amelia, and Appomattox from Buckingham and other counties. These counties contain the watersheds identified in the land records.

     In the land records, a continual reference is to "Cat Branch". This stream flows into the Willis River, and regardless of the listed county in a land record, is now in the northeastern corner of Buckingham County, flowing into Cumberland County, where it meets the Willis River, which flows northeast to join the James River. To further complicate things, the Willis River, then a creek, flows from the southeastern part of Buckingham County into Cumberland County. Some of the land records reflect land that could be in this location. The land patented by John Palmer is on the "Cat Branch of the Willis River." I have found no land records for other Palmers.

     A survey of the documents found in the Journal of the Virginia Genealogical Society demonstrates the activities of Palmer, Beasley/Beazley, Nixon/Nickson/Nixson, and Burton families in this area from 1747 to 1797. A John Palmer shows up later in Buckingham County, after the family moved to Garrard County. Whether this is because of land still owned in Buckingham County, or because a "John Palmer" relative stayed in Virginia, is not known.

     Much of this has been extracted and published by the Virginia Genealogical Society and published in their quarterly journals. The search is still on for a will from John Palmer, which might clarify the names of his children, or his wife.

     Although we have no evidence that Nixon Palmer was his son, the locations suggest it. Because we have evidence on land only for John, but evidence that Nixon was probably included in his tithables, we take the tentative position that he was a son. It also appears that there is a son John as well, who moved to Kentucky, and named one of his sons Nixon.

     The will of John Beasley, and the subsequent will of his widow, Mary (Fuqua) Beasley indicate that their daughter Mary was married to Nixon Palmer between 1781 and 1792. She is referred to as "Mary Beasley" in the first will (her father's, dated 1781), and as "Mary Palmer" in the second, her mother's, dated 1792. Her daughter, Nancy Palmer, is also mentioned. Nixon is named executor.

We don't know the reason for the name "Nixon", but there was a Hugh Nixon/Nickson family within twenty miles at that time. It is reasonable to think that John's wife came from this family. Likewise, the name "Burton" appears in subsequent generations. There were several Burton families within a few miles in present day Buckingham, Fluvanna, Prince Edward, and Cumberland Counties. There needs to be research as to whether the Burton names came from the Palmer side or the Beasley side, as there are Beasleys close to the Burtons in a twenty mile radius.

Children of John and (--?--)

Last Edited=19 Apr 2016