Garland Ballard of Orange County, Virginia (1798-1851).

Garland Ballard, the son of James Ballard, Sr of Albemarle County, Virginia, was born 13 June 1798 in Albemarle County, Virginia, and died 18 June 1851 in Orange County, Virginia.  The dates of his birth and death are preserved on his tombstone at the Graham Cemetery, Orange, Virginia, as are those of his second wife, Georgianna Blair (

Several researchers confuse him with another Garland Ballard, the son of Bland Ballard of Albemarle County, Virginia.  That Garland Ballard was born c. 1785 and would have been about 27 years of age; he lived in Albemarle County at the time of the 1810 census.  1810 US Federal Census, Fredericksville, Albemarle, Virginia, Roll 66, Page 185, Image 00202.  He later removed to Todd County, Kentucky, where he was enumerated in the Federal Census of 1830, 1840, 1850 and finally in 1860, when the Census recorded that he was 75 years of age.

War of 1812 Service Records record that Garland Ballard and Garland Ballard, Jr were both privates in the 7th Regiment (Gray’s) of the Virginia Militia.  The subject of this sketch would have been 14 years of age in 1812, so it is conceivable that both Garlands served in the same regiment, and the younger was identified as “Jr.” to distinguish the two in the records.

He married, first, Eliza Burt on 5 May 1818 in Orange, Virginia; the marriage record notes that the father’s name is James Ballard.  Virginia Marriages, 1785-1940, Familysearch database.  He married, second, on 2 November 1826 Georgianna Blair (24 January 1801-18 April 1883), the daughter of Mr. James Blair of Fredericksburg.  A contemporary news report in The Virginia Herald reported “Married — At Woodville, near Orange Court House on Thursday, November 2, Mr. Garland Ballard, Merchant, to Miss Georgiana Blair, daughter of the late Mr. James Blair, of Fredericksburg.”  The Virginia Herald, Wednesday, 8 November 1826.  Virginia Marriages, 1740-1850 (Ancestry database).

Garland Ballard was enumerated in the 1820 US Federal Census for Orange, Virginia as a household comprised of three people: One male between the ages of 16 to 25, one female age 16-25, and one male slave, age 14-25.  Presumably Eliza was still living on 7 August 1820, the date of the enumeration.  1820 US Federal Census, Orange, Virginia, page 79 NARA Roll M33_141, Image: 92.

By 1830, the Federal Census reveals that they probably had two children.  One male and one female under five years of age are in the household, as is a male aged between 15 and 19; additional research may reveal his identity, though an educated guess suggests it may have been Garland’s brother, James, Jr, who was born in 1815 and would have been the appropriate age.  At this point they possessed three slaves, evidence of their increased prosperity.  1830 US Federal Census, Orange, Virginia; Series M19, Roll 196, page 298.

In 1832, Garland Ballard built a substantial residence in the town of Orange at 158 East Main Street.  He defaulted on the deed of trust and lost the house in 1843.  The National Register Application for the property gives this history:

Lending a sense of continuity and place to the town of Orange, the Ballard-Marshall house demonstrates the pervasiveness of the Classical Revival tradition in the Virginia Piedmont. Distinguished by its pedimented roof, Classical trim, and systematic proportions, the house was built in 1832 for Garland Ballard, a local merchant. The builders are not known, but the use of finely crafted Flemish bond and informed detailing suggests a connection with local projects constructed by craftsmen formerly employed by Thomas Jefferson. During the mid-19th century the house was owned by the locally prominent Taylor family.

In 1882 it became the home of Fielding Lewis Marshall, the local superintendent of public education and grandson of Chief Justice John Marshall. The property remained in Marshall family ownership until 1962. Rescued from a state of neglect in 1986, the house has been rehabilitated for apartments.

The lot where the Ballard-Marshall House now stands was included in a five-acre tract purchased in 1826 by Orange merchant Garland Ballard from the estate of Dr. William Shepherd. The deed to Ballard specified that “land and appurtenances” were being transferred: an older frame residence and store, constructed by William Shepherd’s father Andrew Shepherd, a merchant there in the second half of the 18th century, were already standing on the property, probably with additional subsidiary buildings. Orange County Land Tax book entries for the late 1920’s note a valuation of $2950 for the buildings on the property.

An entry in the 1832 Orange County Land Tax book raised the total building valuation on the tract to $5950, “$3000 added On account of Improvements”. This, along with a foundation brick inscribed “1832”, indicate that Ballard completed his new brick house, the original portion of the Ballard-Marshall House, early in that year.

Due to Ballard’s default on a deed of trust on the old Shepherd property, the land was divided and sold at auction by the trustees in 1843. By deed of 27 December 1843, “the lot upon which a brick house is built”, the Ballard-Marshall House and reduced acreage, was conveyed to Robert Taylor.

The 1840 Federal Census shows that the household added three more daughters (with two females under 5 years of age, one female age 5 to 9, one female age 10 to 15), while the males remain constant, with one male age 10 to 14 and another age 20 to 28.  Garland falls in the range of 40 to 49, while Georgianna would be between the ages of 30 and 39.  Interestingly, the household includes four free colored persons (all males) and 18 slaves.  1840 US Federal Census, Orange, Virginia, Roll 573, page 3, Image 10.

The 1850 Federal Census, which provided names of everyone in the household for the first time, included Garland Ballard, age 51 (occupation: “farmer”), Georgiana Ballard, age 49; Helen P. Ballard, age 20; Janette Ballard, age 14; and William G. H. Ballard, age 10.  1850 US Federal Census, Orange, Virginia, Roll M432_967, Page 258B, Image 91.

We should also note his connections with his brother, James Ballard, Jr of New York, New York (1815-1832).  James named one of his daughters Georgianna Blair Ballard, who was born in 1849, two years after the death of Garland’s daughter Georgianna Blair.  Additional support of the connection is the use of the name “Peyton”; Garland named a daughter Helen Peyton Ballard, and James named one of his sons James Peyton Ballard.  We have yet to discover the Peyton connection among their ancestors.  In the 1860s and 1870s, members of the Lawson family resided with James Ballard; presumably they were relations of Helen Peyton (Ballard) Lawson, who died in New York in 1896.  And finally, James named his youngest son William Rhodes Ballard, most likely in honor of their mother, Ann Rhodes Ballard.

Garland Ballard and Georgianna Blair had issue:

Male, whose name and whether he survived to adulthood remains an open question.

Helen Peyton, born 1830, married 10 January 1855 John D. Lawson, who was born in 1819 in New York, the son of Daniel Lawson and Jane Lawson.  Virginia Marriages, 1785-1940 (FamilySearch database).  Helen Peyton (Ballard) Lawson died 13 July 1896 in New York City, and was interred 15 July 1896 at Greenwood Cemetery.  A widow, her address at the time of her death was 244 East 15th St, New York, New York.  New York, New York City Municpal Deaths, 1795-1949 (Familysearch database).

Mary E., born 1833, married 5 August 1856 John Strother Hansbrough (1831-1921), of Culpeper, Virginia, the son of Alexander Hamilton Hansbrough and Elizabeth Hansbrough. Virginia Marriages, 1785-1940 (FamilySearch database).  Both are interred at the Graham Cemetery, Orange, Virginia (

Janette G., born 1837, married 4 August 1858 James S. Robinson, who was born 1835 and lived in Orange County, Virginia, the son of Thomas A. Robinson and Maria L. Robinson.  Virginia Marriages, 1785-1940 (FamilySearch database).  Jennette G. Robinson died 18 May 1885 in Orange, Virginia.  Virginia Deaths and Burials, 1853-1912 (Familysearch database).

Georgianna Blair, born 31 March 1838, died 21 October 1847.  Interred at Graham Cemetery with her parents, Orange County, Virginia (  The Richmond Whig and Republic Advertiser of 29 October 1847 noted: “Died – At Orange C. H. on Oct. 24, Georgianna Blair Ballard, dau. of Garland Ballard, in her 10th year.”

William G. H., born 1840.