Background: Surviving Quaker Records
This is a work in progress initially relying on the record abstracts of William Wade Hinshaw’s Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy. As time allows, these abstracts will be supplemented with assorted county and other records. While many have survived, there are gaps and in some cases for particular Monthly Meetings, complete losses.
The surviving records of the Society of Friends, otherwise known as Quakers, provide a unique view of the movements of adherents to that faith. Their scrupulous records include birth and death dates, and “certificates of removal” authorizing travel from one region to another — essentially letters of introduction directing the friends at that Monthly Meeting to welcome one of their own, and important clues to the genealogist tracing migration from one region to another.
Members of a Ballard family figure in the records of a number of Monthly Meetings in Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee.
The main meetings in Virginia were the following:
Hanover and Caroline County and environs:
Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting – established in 1739 from the Henrico-Curles Monthly Meeting; also called the Caroline and Circular Monthly Meeting, which included the following counties: Hanover, New Kent, Caroline, Caroline, Louisa, Orange, Bedford, Campbell, Albemarle, Halifax, parts of Charles City, Amelia, Goochland and Henrico.
Bedford County and environs:
South River Monthly Meeting – established 1757 from the Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting, and divided in 1794 into the South River Monthly Meeting and Goose Creek Monthly Meeting. This Monthly Meeting included the counties of Bedford, Campbell, Albemarle, Amherst, Halifax, Pittsylvania, Henry, Franklin and Patrick.
Carrol County and environs:
Mt. Pleasant Monthly Meeting – established 1801, by authority of New Garden Quarterly Meeting. The Meeting House was in Grayson County, Virginia, but the congregation extended into Carrol County, Virginia and Surry County, North Carolina.
New Garden Monthly Meeting – established 1754 by direction of Perquimans and Little River Quarterly Meeting. The first settlement at New Garden was about 1750, with a meeting for worship granted in 1751 by Cane Creek Monthly Meeting.
Deep River Monthly Meeting – established 1778.
Springfield Monthly Meeting – established 1790.
Westfield Monthly Meeting – established 1786. Its predecessor was Tom’s Creek Meeting, which was organized in 1771; the name was changed to Westfield when the monthly meeting was established in 1786. It encompassed Surry and adjoining counties in North Carolina, adjacent territory in Virginia and settlements in Greene and Jefferson Counties, Tennessee.
Newhope Monthly Meeting – established 1795 by direction of New Garden Quarterly Meeting and Westfield Monthly Meeting. Settlement began as early as 1784.
Mount Pleasant Monthly Meeting – established 1801 by authority of New Garden Quarterly Meeting. The Meeting House was in Grayson County, Virginia, but the territory extended into Carroll County, Virginia to the east and Surry County, North Carolina to the south.
Two Quaker Ballard Families
The Society of Friends (Quakers) established in Hanover County a thriving community that was the outgrowth of two movements: (1) the opening and settlement of new lands above Richmond by those of the Quaker faith; and (2) the most directly continuous of all of the Virginia Monthly Meetings, which came to be known as “The Great Awakening.” The Great Awakening was a spiritual revival that reached Hanover, Louisa and Caroline Counties around 1738, and during that time many were converted and professed themselves “Friends.” This resulted in the organization of many Quaker meetings in these counties. Eventually the Monthly Meetings encompassed a great number throughout central Virginia, including Cedar Creek (established 1739, though the meeting house dates from about 1719), Camp Creek (1744), Fork Creek (before 1744), Douglas or Orange (1748), Sugar Loaf Mountain (1744), South River (1754), Halifax (1755), Genito (1744), Green Spring (before 1741), Amelia or Johnsons’ (1755). The counties within the bounds of the Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting include Hanover, New Kent, Caroline, Louisa, Orange, Bedford, Campbell, Albemarle, Halifax, parts of Charles City, Amelia, Goochland and Henrico.1
The earliest mention of a Ballard family among Quaker records is Richard Ballard being mentioned as being of Caroline County, Virginia in 1742. A series of misadventures are documented — among them, seizure of property for refusal to pay priest’s wages; his son Thomas being disowned in 1750. We believe (based on y-DNA evidence) that this Richard Ballard is the Richard identified as being of Lineage Group I of the Ballard DNA Project, who removed to Bedford County, Virginia.
Another unrelated Quaker Ballard family resided in Caroline at the same — and please note that while they share the same surname, genetically they are a different family — and can be traced to the William Ballard who is believed to have married Mary (Byrom) Chenault (an assertion we take issue with; more on that below), and can be distinguished from the William Ballard, brother of Richard based on familial associations. As of this writing (February 2015), two people who trace their descent from William Ballard and Mary ___________ have been placed in Lineage Group III of the Ballard DNA Project, and three others trace to one or more of the many Philip Ballards who resided in these same parts of Virginia early in the eighteenth century (which we will turn our attention to in due course).
A note on dates prior to 1752 — we’ve fallen prey to this error. Up to 1751 the Julian calendar was in use in England, Wales, Ireland and the British colonies. The year in the Julian calendar began on March 25. In 1752 the law changed the calendar to the Gregorian calendar, with the year starting on January 1. Quakers objected to the names of days and months that derived from Pagan gods (they had no issue with September through December, which were derived from numbers), so they substituted either numbers or Roman numerals, sometimes Arabic numerals. After 1752 all months were referred to by their number — for example, October became “10th month.”
William Ballard of Caroline and Bedford Counties, Virginia (1715-1794).
William Ballard and his family were “received in membership” of the Camp Creek Monthly Meeting on 16, 5 [July] 1748. The Camp Creek Monthly Meeting, which covered Caroline, Louisa, and Orange and Counties, was established the previous year and discontinued in 1753, and its members joined the Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting. In a description of that Monthly Meeting, Mr Hinshaw notes, “These appear to have been friends of recent conversion.”2 A Sarah Ballard joined the same day; her relationship to this William is unknown.
This William Ballard is commonly claimed to have married Mary Byrom, the widow of Howlett Chenault. We question this assertion because there is no evidence of William having any connection with Essex County. The basis for this claim is that on 21 June 1738, in Essex County, Virginia, is a record that William Ballard and Mary Ballard his wife were the administrators of the Estate of Howlett Chenault, dec’d, and posted bond of 100 pounds sterling.3
Curiously, a William Ballard is named in an action for debt brought by James Booth and Thomas Davis against Stephen Chenault and William Ballord on 15 September 1724. The William who is the subject of this sketch would have been nine years old in 1724; this William associated with Stephen Chenault is of an earlier generation.4
Other researchers of claimed that William’s first wife was Mary Moorman, the daughter of Charles Moorman and Elizabeth Reynolds. Mary was the sister of Thomas Moorman (1704-1767), the first husband of Rachel Clark; this widowed Rachel married William Ballard in 1768. Various online genealogies list him with additional wives, but unfortunately without adequate documentation. The Mary Moorman attribution makes sense to us, but (for now) is without proof. It does beg the question of the source of the name “Byrom” for one of their sons.
In September 1743, William and Mary Ballard appear in the Caroline County records to confirm transfer of Mary’s dower interest in a parcel of land sold to Henry Mills.5
On 8, 11 [November] 1755, William Ballard and his family are granted a certificate from Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting to North Carolina6 The records do not state where he and his family removed to, but later entries provide clues, for on 10, 4 [April] 1757, an Ann Ballard of Caroline County, the daughter of William Ballard of North Carolina married John Stanley. A later entry states that on 11 November 1763, William, son of William Ballard of Roan [Rowan] County, North Carolina married in the Friends Meeting House in Hanover County Ann Stanley, the daughter of Thomas Stanley of Hanover County.7
However, neither an Ann nor William are listed among the children of the William Ballard who was at one time a member of the Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting. Assuming Ann Ballard was 21 years old when she married in 1757, her date of birth would be c. 1736, and her father William, in turn (assuming she was an eldest child) would have been born c. 1715. William Ballard recites in his will that he is 77 years of age in 1792, which places his date of birth at 1715. There are additional confounding records, namely, a notation that a Mary Ballard, daughter of William, died 1 September 1771, after traveling to Cedar Creek from New Garden earlier that year; yet this William Ballard names his daughter Mary (McGinnity) in his will of 1792, and his (likely) son William had a daughter Mary, and she is otherwise accounted for. The existence of these three argues for the possibility that the William Ballard identified as residing in North Carolina in 1757 when Ann Ballard married John Stanley while her father was in North Carolina was a cousin, and Ann, William and this Mary are his children, and not the children of William Ballard of Bedford County.
On 9 March 1776, William Ballard (probably this the son of the William born in 1715) and his family were granted a certificate to remove to the New Garden Monthly Meeting in Guilford County, North Carolina.8
Mary must have died by 13 August 1768, for on that date at Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting, William Ballard is granted a certificate to South River Monthly Meeting to marry.9 On 25 August 1768, at South River Monthly Meeting, William Ballard married to Rachel Moorman,10 and again on 15 October 1768.11 On their marriage at South River Meeting House, the following witnesses signed the marriage certificate: Zach Moorman, Micajah Moorman, Charles Moorman, Clark Moorman, Gillis Moorman, Benjamin Johnson, William Johnson, Byrum Ballard, Thomas Ballard, Bowling Clark, Micajah Terrell, Christopher Anthony, Henry Tate, Sarah Terrell,, Winifred Clark, Susanna Johnson, Eleanor Ballard, Martha Ferrall, Martha Ferrall, Jr., Betty Moorman, Susanna Moorman, Lucy Johnson, Elizabeth Ferrall, Sarah Tate, Penelope Johnson, Mary Ferrall, Mary Timberlake, Judith Goode, Agnes Clark.12
On 21 July 1771, at South River Monthly Meeting, Rachel Ballard’s name appeared for the first time in the women’s Monthly Meeting records.13
On 24 February 1783, William Ballard emancipated a slave called Squire York:14
Writing of Emancipation — Ballard to York. I William Ballard of the County of Bedford Virginia being fully persuaded that freedom is the Natural Right of all Man Kind & being desirous to full fill the Injunction of our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ by doing unto others as I would be done by do therefore declare that having under my Care a Negroe Boy named Squire York aged about thirteen years I do hereby for myself my Heirs & Emancipate & Set free the above named Negro Boy after he shall arrive to Lawfull age which he shall Enjoy in as full an ample manner as if he had been Born of free Parents & do here by Relinquish unto the said Squire York all my Right title Interest or claim or Pretentions of Claim whatsoever or any person Claiming for by or under me In Witness where of I have here unto set my hand & Seal this 24th day of the Second Month Seventeen Hundred & Eighty three.
On 10 June 1792, at South River Monthly Meeting, Rachel is reported to have died about 82 years old [therefore b. c. 1710].15
William Ballard left a will dated 12 June 1792 and recorded 29 April 1794:16
Be it known to all Men that I William Ballard of Bedford Co, Virginia Being at this time in health of Body and Sound of memory for which I desire to be thankful to the Lord and being in the Seventy-Seventh year of my age do make and ordain this my last Will and Testament and dispose of all my worldly good in form and manner following Viz:
Item: I give and bequeath to my son Byrom two hundred acres of land lying in Orange Co. which he had paid me for and I have made him a deed for but fearing the Deed is not good do now bequeath the same to him and his heirs forever.
Item: I give and bequeath to my daughter Frances Wilson three pounds six shillings in Loo of a Daddle and also one featherbed and furniture to her and her heirs forever.
Item: I give and bequeath to my daughter Mary McGinnity forty shillings to make her saddle equal to her sister’s
Item: I give and bequeath to my daughter Delphia Caldwell twenty pounds to her and her heirs forever to make her equal to what I have given to the rest of my children.
My will is that whereas I have purchased a tract of land of my son Byrom and given it to my son Barclay and am indebted twenty pounds to my son Byrom for the same that it be paid out of my son Barclays part of my Estate after my decease.
Item my will is that after my decease that the remaining part of my Estate be equally divided amongst all my children and do constitue and appoint my son Byrom Ballard Sole Executor of my Estate to collect and pay of at His discretion and do ratify and confirm this my last will and testament and have hereunto set my hand and seal this ye 12 day of the sixth month 1792.
William X Ballard
Signed and sealed in the presence of us.
Christopher Anthony_ affm.
Christopher Anthony Jr.
At a Court continued and held for Bedford County at the Court house the 29 Apr 1794.
The last will and Testament of William Ballard deceased was proved by the solemn affirmation of Christopher Anthony and Mary Anthony two of the witnesses whose names are there to subscribed and ordered to be recorded- and on the motion of Byrom Ballard the Executor therein named who affirmed thereto cerrtificate is granted him for obtaining probate thereof according to law on giving security whereon the said Byrom Ballard together with William Davis his security entered into and acknowledged their Bond in the penalty of three thousand pounds conditioned for the said Byrom Ballard faithful administrator of the said decedents estate and performance of his will. Teste Ja Steptoe C. B. C.
At a court held for Bedford Co the 28th day of July 1794 this inventory of the estate of William Ballard deceased returned to the court and ordered to be recorded. Teste James Steptoe.17
AN INVENTORY APPRAISAL OF THE ESTATE OF WILLIAM BALLARD DECEASED TAKEN 6 MONTH 2 DAY OF 1794 (VIS)
1 gray mare saddle bridle and sell 16 ? ?
2 sidis of sole leather 17/ 1 ? ?
2 sidis of harnis leather .22/6 2 ? ?
4 sidis of upper leather 1 12 6
2 pieces sole leather 0 7 6
1 gun shot bag 0 18 0
1 pair sadle bags 0 6 0
2 steal and 1 wire rat traps 0 6 0
1 spade 0 6 0
1 pair harnes and chains 0 12 0
3 old bridles and 4 rasping hooks 0 6 0
1 iron pot and hooks 0 6 0
1 iron pot and hooks 0 7 0
2 iron pot and hooks small 0 3 0
1 dutch oven 0 8 0
1 apice mortar skillet and bake iron 0 6 0
1 cutting knife and steel for same 0 7 2
sundry old irons 1 12 6
1 pr tongs 0 3 0
1 bell 0 2 0
1 hand saw 0 2 0
1 inch auger 0 1 6
2 padlocks 0 2 6
5 books 0 12 0
1 arm chair 0 4 0
sundry tools 0 9 0
1 jug and full of honey 1 10 0
1 jug and full of honey 1 10 0
3 bottles and 1 jug 0 5 0
3 bottles 0 2 0
1 stone pitcher 0 5 0
1 wire wheat sive 0 8 0
1 pr hand bellers 0 4 0
3 pr cards 0 8 0
2 pr spars 0 2 6
old pewter 4 10 10
4 yards ticking 1 13 0
7 1/2 yars ?anabrige 0 9 ?
18 yerds checks 2 5 ?
1 chest 0 8 ?
1 dozen new table spoons 0 3 ?
1 set of money scales 0 7 ?
1 chest 0 ? ?
1 cart 1 ? ?
1 basket of small tools 40 ? ?
Agreeable to an order of Bedford court to us directed we have appraised the above mentioned goods to us produced this 2d of June 1974. Henry Haynes, Hery Shatton, John Shatton at a court held for Bedford Co. the 22d of sept this appraisement of the estate of WILLIAM BALLARD was returned to court and ordered to be recorded. Teste. Ja. Steptoe.18
THE ESTATE OF WILLIAM BALLARD DECEASED IN a/o WITH BRYAM BALLARD, EXECUTOR 1794 July 28 to amount of John Griffin’s bond who is insolvent.
To an error in stating the amount of Simon Miller’s Bond and a Credit of L8.15.1- 1/2 allowed by the referees in this suit against Miller
To Paid the clerk recording the will inventory and copies thereof 2 5 3
To Nursing William Ballard during his illness 0 15 0
To expense of sale 0 18 0
To allowance made the executor for trouble and expenses 64 16 3
To balance due the estate 1227 10 10 1/2
CREDIT 1316 16 11
July 28th 1794
By amount of debts and interest thereon due to the estate and proceeds of sales as inventory
1313 15 11 3/4
By cash omitted to be inventoried 3 0 0
1316 15 11 3/4
By balance due estate 1227 10 10 1/2
Pursuant to an order of Bedford Co. Court hereunto annexed we Thomas Sumpklin, Christopher Clark, and Andrew Donald three of the commisioners therin appointed have this day proceeded to state and settle the account current of William Ballard deceased with Byram Ballard executor and we find the balance due by the executor to the said estate to be twelve hundred and twenty seven pounds ten shillings, and ten pence 1.2d as the account current hereunto annexed. Witness our hands this 27th day of October 1797. Tomas Sumpkin, Christopher Clark, Andrew Donald.
At a court held for Bedford Co the 22d day of January 1798 this account current of the estate of William Ballard deceased with Burom Ballard executor was returned to court and ordered to be recorded. Teste, Ja. Steptoe Clerk Bedford court.19
The children of William and Mary ____________ were [birth dates (except the last two children) are from a record book of Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting, Hanover County, Virginia]:20
THOMAS, b. 12, 11 [January] 1735/6.
Frances, b. 12, 12 [February] 1737/8. On 12, 11 [November] 1763, Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting. Frances Ballard, daughter of William, was condemned for “such undue liberties as dansing” by the Cedar Creek Monthly Meeting.21 Married _________ Wilson.
BYROM [Byram], b. 27, 2 [April] 1740.
Delphin [Delphia], b. 1, 5 [July] 1742, married _________ Caldwell.
MOORMAN, b. 10, 3 [May] 1747/8.
DAVID, b. 9, 4 [June] 1750.
BARCLAY, b. c. 1751.
Mary, b. after 1752, married ___________ McGinnity.
1. William Wade Hinshaw, Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy, Vol. VI (Ann Arbor, Michigan: Edwards Brothers, Inc., 1950), pp. 223-226.
2. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p .285.
3. 21 June 1738. William Ballard and Mary Ballard his wife, administrators of the Estate of Howlett Chenault, dec’d. Bond 100 pounds sterling. Essex Co. Va. Will Book 6, pp. 133-34.
4. 15 September 1724. In action of Debt brought by James Booth & Thomas Davis against Stephen Chenault & William Ballord, judgment granted plaintiffs for 212 pounds of tobo in cask & costs. Essex Co. Va. Order Book 1723-25 (Part II) p. 193.
5. September 1743. William Ballard & Mary his wife, she being first privily examined acknowledged their deed indented to Henry Mills which is ordered to be recorded. Caroline Co. Va. Order Book 1741-1746, p. 234.
6. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 227.
7. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 227.
9. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 228.
10. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 228.
11. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 296
12. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 297.
13. James Pinkney Bell, Our Quaker Friends in Ye Olden Time (Lynchburg: J.P. Bell Co., 1905), p. 71.
14. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 297.
15. Bedford Co. Va. Deed Book G.7, pp. 181-182.
16. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 296.
17. Bedford Co. Va. Will Book 2, p. 130.
18. Bedford Co. Va. Will Book 2, pp. 134-135.
19. Bedford Co. Va. Will Book 2, pp. 136-137.
20. Bedford Co. Va. Will Book 2, p. 217.
21. Bell, p. 3.
22. Hinshaw, Vol. VI, p. 227.