The Jackson Purchase region of Kentucky is comprised of the eight westernmost counties - Ballard, Calloway, Carlisle, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Marshall and McCracken. It is bordered on the west by the Mississippi River, on the north by the Ohio River, on the east by the Tennessee River and the state of Tennessee to the south. By Kentuckians it is generally referred to simply as "the Purchase".

Andrew Jackson and Isaac Shelby purchased the land lying west of the Tennessee River from the Chickasaw tribe and opened the area for settlement around 1820. Within the next few years, my grandfather's ancestors came there from Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee - the Beadles, Clapps, Pryors and Wingos settled in Graves County with the Reeves and Halls in neighboring Ballard County.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

My 5th Great Grandmother Sarah

Sarah was the grandmother of Jerman J. Wingo who settled the town of Wingo, in Graves County, Kentucky. She married Thomas Wingo, Jr. around 1757 and by 1765 she was a young widow with four small children. There are no clues to Sarah's surname and the identity of her family although they were surely neighbors of the Wingo family in Amelia County, Virginia living among the families between Flatt Creek and the Appomatox River.

Various family trees online, particularly on list Sarah as Sarah Rucker, but that is incorrect as Sarah Rucker was the wife of Thomas Wingo's brother John. This is substantiated by a court case following Sarah Rucker Wingo's death around 1780. In 1791 her father, William Rucker, executed a deed of gift to the heirs of his deceased daughter. The disputed slaves Milly and her children Sam, Ben, Nan, Charles, Becky, Lewis, Rueben, Edy and Moses were still in the possession of John Wingo, Sarah's husband, as late as 1797. A settlement was finally negotiated between John Wingo and his children wherein they received the slaves given by their grandfather and agreed not to make any claims or demands against the estate of John Wingo. (Amelia Co., VA; Book 9; Page 275; Probate records; 22 Nov 1821)

Sarah is also listed as Sarah Foster in many online family trees which is probably the result of some confusion because she married John Foster the son of William Foster of the Stock's Creek area in Amelia County after Thomas Wingo, Jr.'s death. In 1779, Sarah's son Obediah was listed as a tithe of John Foster and in 1782, Thomas Wingo was. This indicates that it was Sarah and John Foster who raised Thomas Wingo, Jr.'s children, not his brother John W. Wingo as some speculate. It is not impossible that Sarah was the daughter of one of the other Foster families in the area but much research has failed to identify a family with a daughter Sarah who was of the right age and available to have been the wife of Thomas Wingo and William Foster's son John.

Over the last 30 years, I have researched many of the Amelia County neighbors of the Wingo family searching for a family that might have been Sarah's. Richard Borum's 1785 Amelia County will named a daughter Sara Foster, but no records can be found that definitely identify Sarah Borum and the Foster family she married into. Colonial Amelia County is filled with countless families like Meador, Burton, Worsham and Seay which are all names I see repeatedly in autosomal DNA matches but have no documentation of any family connection. For now I'll just keep researching each of the neighboring families as I find a DNA match and maybe someday I'll find Sarah.

1 comment:

  1. Beverly ... you are so precise in you search! I really enjoy reading your blogs! Thanks for posting!