John Ballard of Mecklenburg County, Virginia (c.1715-1787).

John Ballard, Sr, the likely son of William Ballard of Charles City county, is named as being of Lunenburg county in a transaction recorded in Surry County when he conveys to John Edmunds and Peter Hines of Surry County for £75: curr. “Four negro slaves, to wit 3 boys named Henry, Charles & Jacob & one girl named Kate,” dated 10 May 1749 and recorded 21 June 1749, Surry Co. Va. Deed Book 5, p. 415.  Later that year he recorded a mortgage extended to Jno. Edmunds and Peter Hines of Surry county, which was proved by Wm. Gray and John Edmunds, recorded 3 June 1749, Surry Co. Va. Order Book 1744-49, p. 556.

He first appears in Lunenburg county when he appears on a list of tithes (with two tithes) taken by Lewis Delony in 1748 (Landon C. Bell, Sunlight on the Southside (Baltimore: Clearfield Company, 1931) p. 68).  We’re fortunate that the all of the lists for 1748 have been found and the boundaries are described in the lists. The territory covered by Lewis Delony was later cut off into Mecklenburg County.  In 1749 and 1750, John Ballard appeared on lists taken by William Howard as a single tithable (Bell, Sunlight, pp. 112, 144).

Two years later, he takes out a patent dated 12 July 1750 for 1,403 acres in Lunenburg county, “on the upper side of Miles Creek adjoining the creek and John Speed.”1  In 1751, he is listed as a tithable (with William Ballard, presumably his son on the following line) on a list by Field Jefferson.2

When John Ballard, Jr appears, the county records distinguish father from son by identifying the son as John Ballard, Jr  and the father as Sr, although sometimes when they both appear in an instrument only “Jr” is so identified.

The family’s alliance with the Holloway family is evident in John Ballard witnessing the will of George Holloway on 6 July 1759,3 and two of his daughters married sons of George Holloway.

John Ballard appeared on a list of tithes taken by Richard Witton, Gent., in 1764, along with Edmund Ballard and William Ballard, the household consisting of 7 tithes and possessing 403 acres (Bell, Sunlight, p. 262).  On 9 February 1767 John Ballard conveyed 1,000 acres on the west side of Miles Creek in Mecklenburg county to Robert Cousins of Amelia county.4

On 3 July 1771 John Ballard witnessed a conveyance by his son Jon Ballard Jr who was at that time residing in Brunswick county, to William Ballard of Mecklenburg of 400 acres in Mecklenburg.5  In 1772, John Ballard with Robert Ballard, Isaac Holmes, Reuben Morgan and Thomas Taylor, Jr agreed to be bound to John Tabb for £5,000, in return for which Robert Ballard is allowed to keep one-third of the fees Tabb collects as clerk, and to be custodian of the clerk’s records.6  On 13 October 1774, John Ballard, Sr joined with Bennett Holloway to convey a negro named Dinah and assorted other personal property to Nathan Winfield.7

John Ballard, Sr had married between 19 February 1730 and 30 July 1747 Faitha Edmunds of Surry county,8 and left a will dated 26 August 1783, recorded 9 July 1787 in Mecklenburg county, Virginia, in which he names his wife Faitha, his daughter Lucey Holmes, daughter Becky Holloway, daughter Martha Holloway, daughter Betty Cook, sons John and William; grandson Francis Ballard, who is to receive slaves after the death of his father William. “My plantation to my son Robert, and to Robert’s oldest living son after Robert’s death.”  He also names his granddaughter Mary Garland Ballard, “The balance of my estate to my son John, and John to be my sole executor.” Signed John Ballard. Will proved on 6 July 1787 in Mecklenburg County, Virginia.   Son John gave bond of  £5,000 as executor.9

Please note that a direct connection between John Ballard of Mecklenburg county and the Ballards of Charles City county has not been found.  We make this attribution based on the strong naming patterns between those families, and the proximity of Brunswick county to Charles City county, making the former a natural path for emigration in those early days.

The children of John Ballard and Faitha Edmunds were:

Lucy, married Isaac Holmes of Lunenburg county, Virginia.  The Bristol Parish Register records that he was born 16 November 1727 in Henrico county, Virginia.  He died at age 45 on 19 September 1772, and left a will in Mecklenburg county, Virginia.10  Lucy Holmes was honored for her service during the American Revolution.11  She appeared in the 1782 Tax List as heading a household of seven whites and seven blacks, and in the Land Tax Books of 1787 and from 1788 to 1795.  Lucy Holmes’ estate was inventoried 11 November 1795, recorded 8 February 1796.  They had 13 children.  A transcript of excerpts from their family bible appears at the bottom of this page.

Rebecca (“Becky”), married _____ Holloway.

Martha, married William Holloway.12

Betty, married _____ Cook.

JOHN, married Mary Garland, the daughter of Colonel David Garland.

ROBERT, married Rebecca Plowman.



1. Patent Book 30, p. 193.  This relationship is assumed and not proven; additional research of this family is sorely needed.

2. Landon C. Bell, Cumberland Parish, Lunenburg County, Virginia, 1746-1816 & Vestry Book, 1746-1816 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1974), p. 175; Landon C. Bell, Sunlight on the Southside (Baltimore: Clearfield Company, 1931) p. 192.

3. Will of George Holloway, dated 6 July 1759 recorded 7 August 1759, Lunenburg Co. Va. Will Book.

4. 9 February 1767. John Ballard to Robert Cousins of Amelia county; £60 for 1000 acres on west side of Miles Creek; Henry Delony’s corner to mouth of a branch above Ballard’s plantation, to Darby’s branch. Signed. Acknowledged 9 February 1767 Court. Mecklenburg Co. Va. Deed Book 1, 1765-1768, p. 332. Also on 9 February 1767. Clerk of the court sends greetings to Henry Delony, Benjamin Baird, and Joshua Mabry; asks that any two of them examine Faith Ballard, wife of John Ballard Sr who is unable to conveniently travel to the court house to give up her right of dower on an indenture which John Ballard Sr made to Robert Cousins on 9 February 1767. It was recorded on 7 November 1768, that Henry Delony and Benjamin Baird, did so examine and question Faith Ballard, out of the presence of her husband, and she gave up her right of dower to the above mentioned land. Mecklenburg Co. Va. Will Book 2, 1768-1771, p. 140.

5. 3 July 1771. John Ballard Jr of Brunswick to William Ballard of Mecklenburg; L200 for 400 acres on heads of branches of Miles/Coxes creek at Ruffin’s line. Recorded 9 September 1771. Witnessed by Noah Dortch, William Duncan, John Lucas, William Anderson, Fred Lanier, Lewis Parkam and John Ballard. Mecklenburg Co. Va. Deed Book 3, 1771-1773, p. 182.

6. 7 March 1772. Robert Ballard, Isaac Holmes, Reuben Morgan, Thomas Taylor, Jr, and John Ballard, Sr, are bound to John Tabb for £5,000. Agreed that Robert Ballard shall keep 1/3 of Tabb’s fees as clerk, and keep all papers and records. Robert Ballard and John Tabb signed agreement, and others all signed bond agreement. Witnessed by John and William Lucas and William Duncan. Recorded on 13 April 1772. Mecklenburg Co. Va. Deed Book 3, 1771-1773, p. 336.

7. 13 October 1774. John Ballard, Sr and Bennett Holloway to Nathan Winfield of Cumberland; £34.7.9 1/2 for a negro named Dinah and 2 beds, 9 cows, 2 horses and furniture. Witnessed by Henry Delony, Atra Clay and Isaac Holmes. Recorded 13 March 1775, Mecklenburg Co. Va. Deed Book 4, p. 390.

8. Faitha Ballard is named in the will of her mother, recorded in Surry county.  The will of her father, William Edmunds dated 19 February 1730, recorded 16 July 1740 identifies her as Faith (the will names his wife Mary Edmunds his Executrix and his sons William, David, John Edmongray (who was not yet 18),  and daughters Mary, Sarah, Susannah, Elizabeth, Faith, Fillis and Christian.  Witnessed by Richard Parker and Nathaniel Moss.  The will of Mary Edumunds of Albemarle Parish, Surry county dated 30 July 1747, recorded 20 November 1753 names John Edmunds her Executor, and leaves bequests to her daughters Elizabeth Hines, Christian Hines, Phillis Norrington and Faith Ballard, and to her son John.  Witnssessd by Howell Jones and Thomas Ren.  Surry Co. Va. Wills, Estates and Inventories, 1730-1800 (abstracts from Wills and Administrations, Surry Co., Va., 1671-1750, by Eliza Timberlake Davis).

9. Will of John Ballard, Jr. Mecklenburg Co. Va. Wills, Volume 2, 1782-1788, page 213.

10. Will of Isaac Holmes, dated 31 August 1772, recorded 14 December 1772 in Mecklenburg Co. Va. Will Book 1, p. 144. The will names his wife Lucy; sons Samuel, John, Isaac, David; on the death or marriage of their mother, they are to receive the 200 acres on which he lived; all children Samuel, John, Isaac, David, Sarah, Ann, Rebecca, Lucy, Frances, Faith, Mary, Elizabeth and Martha; all of estate to wife Lucy during life or widowhood. Executors: wife Lucy, John Ballard, Jr, William Holmes. Witnesses: Benjamin Bennington, Robert Ballard, Rebecca Tanner.

11. Revolutionary War Service, Mecklenburg County Virginia. Lucy Holmes – Patriot, May 14, 1782. For Continental Use, 275 cwt Beef. Mecklenburg Co. Va. Order Bk 5, P 151.

12. William Holloway left a will dated 6 October 1784, proved 22 November 1784, recorded Mecklenburg county, Virginia Will Book 2, pp. 422-23. The will names his wife Martha Ballard. William Holloway Estate & Inventory and Appraisal dated 26 November 1784, recorded 28 February 1785 in Mecklenburg Co. Va. Will Book 2, pp. 469-472. The estate was not settled until the death of Martha; the sale is dated 1 April 1789, recorded: 26 October 1789 in Mecklenburg Co. Va. Will Book 5, pp. 327-29.

Holmes Family Bible

A bible belonging to the family of Isaac Holmes, who married Lucy Ballard, was located in Pennsylvania and published online by Sue Gill, a Ballard descendant and researcher.  Relevant records are excerpted here.

Isaac Holmes left a will in in Mecklenburg county, Virginia.  He named his wife Lucy and the following his children: Samuel, John, Isaac, David, Sarah, Anne, Rebecca, Lucy, Frances, Faith, Mary, Elizabeth, Martha. Executors: wife Lucy, John Ballard, Jr., and William Holmes. Witnesses: Benjamin Pennington, Robert Ballard, and Rebecca Tanner. Dated: 31 Aug 1772; Recorded: 14 Dec. 1772.  Mecklenburg Co. Va. Will Book No. 1, Page 144.

“The Illustrated Explanatory Family Bible: The Holy Bible with the
Apocrypha, Psalms in Metre, and Marginal References and Readings,
Brown’s Complete Concordance to the Holy Scriptures:
To Which Are Added
A Pictorial History of the Books of the Bible
By Rev. Washington B. Erben,
Rector of the Church of the Redeemer, Philadelphia.
The Improved
Pictorial Dictionary of the Bible
by Rev. Alfred Nevin, D.D., LL.D
Author of “A Popular Commentary on Luke,” “The Churches of the Valley”, etc.
And the Illustrated
Christian Denominations of the World,
Their Doctrines, Government and History,
By Rev. Clement M. Butler, D.D.
Professor of Ecclesiastical History in the Divinity School, Philadelphia;
of “Ecclesiastical History from the First to the Nineteenth Century,” Etc.
(quite a bit more material)
“With Several Hundred Engravings, Maps and Plans, on Wood and Steel
Fred. L. Horton & Co.

Isaac Holmes, born Novr 16th 1727.
Lucy, his wife, born December 3d 1734.
Sons and Daughters of the above:
Sarah Holmes born Octr 25, 1751
Samuel Holmes born April 4th 1753
John Holmes born February 6th, 1755
Anne Holmes born Janry 9th 1757
Isaac Holmes born March 9, 1758
Rebecca Holmes born June 21, 1759
Lucy Holmes born April 17, 1761
Frances Holmes born June 5, 1762
Taithy Holmes born Apirl 30, 1764 [probably should be Faithy]
Mary Holmes born March 18, 1766
Elizabeth Holmes born July 9, 1767
David Holmes born May 15, 1768
Martha Holmes born Octor 2d 1770
David Holmes born April 23d 1772

At the top of the page is written: Samuel Holmes and his wife Mary were
born in Ireland. Landed in Virginia 1710. Their son, Isaac Holmes born Nov
16, 1727 in Virginia. (Our records show that Samuel’s wife was named Ann).

There are other births recorded on this page and another Births page. They
carry forward the line of David Holmes, b. April 23rd 1772 and his wife

Isaac Holmes and Lucy Ballard were married December 25th 1750.
David Holmes (son of above) and Elizabeth Clark m. Jan 28th 1790.
(marriages continue)

Isaac Holmes Sept 19, 1772
Lucy Holmes March 10, 1795
(other deaths listed)


3 thoughts on “John Ballard of Mecklenburg County, Virginia (c.1715-1787).

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