Thomas Beard, fourth son of John and Rebecca (Sterrett) Beard lived in Hanover Township, Northampton Co., Pa., and migrated to Augusta County, VA ca 1750. Other Scotch-Irish friends and neighbors migrating to Augusta County at this time were the Steele, McNutt, John Mills, and McClure families many of whom were intermarried with the Beard Families. Thomas Beard married Jean McNutt, daughter of Elder James McNutt who died in 1753, and his son-in-law was named executor his estate. Thomas Beard was "very aged" in 1764 and exempt from taxes, according to Lyman Chalkey in his "Records of Augusta County, Va.". His will, dated 15 May 1769 and proven 18 October 1769 had his son-in-law James Mitchell as executor.
This picture taken April 2007, shows Beard Road in Augusta County, Virginia. It is located at the same approximate location as the map shows the original Beard land purchase.
|History of the Beard-Bedicheck-Craven
and Allied Families - by Pauline Beard Cooney, 1979 - Thomas
Beard, fourth son of John and Rebecca (Sterrett) Beard lived in
Hanover Township, Northampton Co., Pa., and migrated to Augusta
County, VA ca 1750. Other Scotch-Irish friends and
neighbors migrating to Augusta County at this time were the
Steele, McNutt, John Mills, and McClure families many of whom
were intermarried with the Beard Families. Thomas Beard
married Jean McNutt, daughter of Elder James McNutt who died in
1753, and his son-in-law was named executor his estate.
Thomas Beard was "very aged" in 1764 and exempt from taxes,
according to Lyman Chalkey in his "Records of Augusta County,
Va.". His will, dated 15 May 1769 and proven 18 October
1769 had his son-in-law James MItchell as executor.
Esther Beard, eldest daughter of Thomas and Jean Beard, married Robert Alexander.
Must have been born in Ireland before 1700 - Came to America with parents and family 1719. 1764 was "very aged" exempt from taxes. Settled in Augusta Co., VA.
History of Pocahontas County West
Virginia, 1981 (Birthplace of Rivers) Published by the
Pocahontas County Historical Society, Inc. Marlinton, WV.
Book 279 of 1200 Limited Editions.
Thomas Beard, the ancestor of that name in Augusta, Greenbrier, and Pocahontas Counties, and his brother Edwin came from Scotland with the Scotch-Irish. Edwin went to Georgia while Thomas settled in Augusta County near what is now the New Hope vicinity. His family consisted of two sons, John and Thomas; and 5 other daughters.
(Ed Note : The above account is not consistent with the account of Pauline Beard Cooney, History of the Beard - Bedichek - Craven and Allied Families, published 1979. It is the Editor's opinion that the research by Pauline Beard Cooney is correct; and the above account is incorrect. Note the above account, even though published in the History of Pocahontas County, is derived from the writings of Williams Thomas Price in the Pocahontas Times. It is not consistent with other information available about Thomas Beard and Jean McNutt).
James McNutt's estate, by Thomas Beard, 15th August, 1753: Paid for land bought by Beard's wife before marriage, 1751. Paid quitrents for land for 10 years, 1751. Paid quitrents, 1744. Paid to Mr. David Hays debt before marriage. Paid to Robert Alexander for schooling James and Robert McNutt, one year, 1748. Paid to James Dobbins, same, for Alexander McNutt, 1748.
|Jan 14, 2007 (Ed.)
One very curious
development is I am starting to doubt that John Beard (who
settled Renick's Valley before the Revolutionary War) was really
the son of Thomas Beard and Jean McNutt.
[Ed Note : Update 5 Mar 2007] I am starting to believe that Thomas had two wives, the first named Esther ? and the second Jean McNutt. The children were mainly by Esther; this is based on some other family tree information. Perhaps Thomas came to VA so late in life because his first wife passed away? As there seems to be some reference to New England Beards with DNA evidence and also some reference to neighbors having horse that "passed away before leaving New England".
[Ed Note : Update 17 Jun 2007] A reference in Chalkey's Augusta County Chronicles says:
Page 40.--16th August. 1W8. John Fulton, farmer, and Mary, to Wm. Fulton, £40, 200 acres in Borden's tract, Thomas Beard's line, on Moffet's Creek; Wm. Kennedy's corner. Teste: Hugh Fulton
Page 249.--18th March, 1760. Thomas ( ) Beard and Margaret to William Beard, £100, 605 A., 1 R., 28 P., in Borden's tract, on side Moffet's Creek; corner Jno. Roseman's land. Delivered: Wm. Beard, August 12, 1791
This appears to be giving William Beard (son of Thomas) 605 A for compensation of £100. Thomas's wife here is Margaret, and some sources site Margaret Eakin as wife of Thomas (2nd wife, first wife was Esther..). If this is the same Thomas Beard as our Thomas, then we have definitely established that Thomas's wife in March of 1760 was Margaret, not Jean McNutt. In Thomas's will in 1767, he left most of his lands to Hugh (his eldest) and no land to William (although he left some monies to William's son Thomas).
(Ed. Note 18 Oct 2007 : The above speculations are mainly due to the conflict between William Thomas Price's account of the Beard Family published in the Pocahontas Times; and other facts. The account of Pauline Beard Cooney, History of the Beard - Bedichek - Craven and Allied Families, published 1979, is, in the Editor's opinion, correct; and that research clears the confusion of Thomas Beard, his wife Jean McNutt, their emigration to America with his father John Beard, settlement in Pennsylvania and eventual migration to Augusta County, Virginia)
Page 511.--18th July, 1752. James Fulton's will, farmer--Son, Hugh, 250 acres joining Samuel Steel's line. One horse died in New England, and 1 horse died here. Son, James, to take care of the widow for her life. Son, William. James to take care of the 2 young boys, David and Thomas, and 3 daughters, Elizabeth, Elliner, and Jane. Son, John. To daughter, Elizabeth, a mare brought from New England. Son, David. Wife, Sarah, and son, Hugh, executors. Teste: Robert Ramsey, Thomas Beard, Robert Alexander. Proved, 15th August, 1753, by all witnesses, and executors qualify with sureties John Brownlee, Thos. Beard.
Virginia Land Deed Records (Augusta and Ohio Counties)
15 April 1765
Although no definitive connection to the Augusta, Virginia
McNutts listed in Chalkley's Chronicles has been established,
there is one connection that is hard to ignore: AUGUSTA COUNTY,
VIRGINIA - CHALKLEY'S CHRONICLES; Vol 3, PP 30 - 49:
Thomas Beard appears to have been appointed administrator of the Estate of James McNutt, who left three orphan boys [James, Robert, and Alexander]. These records were created in 1753. At that time, there was a Thomas Beard, who was the husband of Jean McNutt, and his grandson Joseph Beard married Sidney Sprowl, daughter of William Sprowl and Susannah Ewing -- sister of Sidney Ewing -- wife of our Lieutenant James McNutt! Thus, our index of suspicion is high that there is some sort of connection between our Francis, James & John McNutt and the Augusta County McNutt clan.
Several sources have confused
Lieutenant James McNutt with the James McNutt who was the
grandson of Alexander McNutt through his son Alexander; the son
Alexander also settled in Augusta County, Virginia. The latter
James McNutt has no apparent Revolutionary War service record;
he was born in 1740 to Alexander (a brother of another James),
married Margaret McElroy in 1768, and died in Augusta County,
Virginia on 6 September 1811. Lieutenant James McNutt was also
probably born in 1740, but married Sidney Ewing in Greenbrier
County, Virginia on 6 February 1781, and then removed with his
family to Bourbon County, Kentucky and then Franklin County,
Ohio before 1806. He died 30 November 1809 in Franklin County,
December 29, 1792, p. 297. Vol. II. Robert Morton and Sarah Sorrels, daughter of Joseph Sorrels (consent); witnesses, Thomas Beard, Kezzeyar Beard; surety, Nathaniel Kelley.
Waddell, the well-known historian of Augusta County, tells us
that the homes were for the first fifteen years or more, hardly
better furnished than the wigwams of the Indians, and that while
most of their owners had horses, cattle, and Bibles, their
minute inventories mention no furniture. Kercheval in his
"History of the Valley," draws a similar picture. Instead of
"feather-beds and furniture," these sturdy folk had pillows,
bolsters, and bed-ticks filled with straw or chaff, laid on the
floor or on rude home-made bedsteads, and it seems that these
and such tables, stools, and benches as necessity must have
compelled them to knock up were not deemed worth appraisement.
They had linen brought by the Scotch-Irish emigrants from their
own country, but not until 1749 does the first table found in
the records by Mr. Waddell appear. It was custom in The Valley,
as in Eastern Virginia, to keep pewter on hand for the molding
of table-ware, and many spoon molds are mentioned. In 1751 David
Flourney left a dozen pewter plates. In 1762 Delft ware appears
in The Valley inventories. In 1764 a corner cupboard. In 1769
Thomas Beard bequeathed his wife an elbow chair, and by this
token of leisure we know that the prosperity for which nature
destined The Valley had set in, the log-cabin age was soon
followed by the stone-house age and barness to give place to
Page 125.--28th November, 1779. Thomas Beard's estate appraised by Jno. Montgomery, Wm. Moore, Thos. Wilson.
Page 126.--Above estate settled--Paid Wm. Berkley, Jno. Eakin, Wm. Perrins, Thomas Alexander's and Thos. Beard's legacies; Esther Alexander's legacy; Thomas Mitchell and his mother; Thos. Dunlap and his mother; Robt. Ramsey and children; Martha Mitchell's legacy.
REF: On 20 Nov 1790 a Thomas Beard, signed a Petition in
Greenbrier Co., VA,
Oct. 18, 1769
Page 511.--18th July, 1752. James Fulton's will, farmer--Son, Hugh, 250 acres joining Samuel Steel's line. One horse died in New England, and 1 horse died here. Son, James, to take care of the widow for her life. Son, William. James to take care of the 2 young boys, David and Thomas, and 3 daughters, Elizabeth, Elliner, and Jane. Son, John. To daughter, Elizabeth, a mare brought from New England. Son, David. Wife, Sarah, and son, Hugh, executors. Teste: Robert Ramsey, Thomas Beard, Robert Alexander. Proved, 15th August, 1753, by all witnesses, and executors qualify with sureties John Brownlee, Thos. Beard
1656 - 10 Feb 1745
ID Number: I78242
|Page 326 1 - Thomas Beard; 194 ac; 25 February
1755; on branches Appomattox River; by John Staples; joining
Obadiah Woodson, James Walker, Thos Sanders, Thos Lee(?), James
"Albemarle County, Virginia Surveyor's Plat Books 1744-1853"
AUGUSTA PARISH VESTRY BOOK.
Page 17.--James Fulton and John Mitchell make returns, viz: 1748, 26th March, processioned for Samuel Doak, present Samuel Braford; processioned for John Mitchell, present Samuel Doak; processioned for Samuel Braford, present Samuel Doak; processioned for John Buchanan, present James Cowen; processioned for Martha Mitchell (widow), present John Buchanan; processioned for James Cowen, present David Mitchell; processioned for David Moor, present Jas. Cowan; processioned for Robert Wilson, present Andrew Alexander; processioned for Andrew Alexander, present Robert Wilson; processioned for Patrick Campbell, present Joseph Reed; processioned for Joseph Reeds, present Chas. Campbell; processioned for Chas. Campbell, present Pat. Campbell; processioned for Patrick Hays, present Wm. Robinson; processioned for Robert Alexander, present Robert Ramsey; processioned for Robt. Ramsey, present Pat. Hays; processioned for Sarah Ramsey (widow), present Robt. Ramsey; processioned for John Lockhart, present Pat. Hays; processioned for Thos. Beard, present John Lockhart; processioned for Samuel Wilson, present Robert Wilson; processioned for David Doak, present Samuel Wilson; processioned for Eleanor Mitchell (widow), present Robert Wilson; processioned for John Teats, present Thos. Beard; processioned for James Linn, present Samuel Doak; processioned for John Brownlee, present Wm. Smith; processioned for George Breckinridge, present, ---- Breckenridge; processioned for James Robinson, present Anthony Black; processioned for Anthony Black, present Jas. Robinson; processioned for Wm. Robinson, present ---- Robinson; processioned for Jas. Fulton, present Alex. Brownlee; processioned for Samuel Steel, present John Fulton
|"A History of Rockbridge County, VA" by Oren F.
Morton, 1920 - Staunton, VA
Conveyances in Borden Track 1741-1780
Dunlap, Samuel -- 5591/2 - 16p 15s 9d - 1742 corner to John Houston; 170 acres sold, 1750 to David Dunlap for 23p; 389 1/2 acres sold, 1753 to Thomas Beard for 140p.
Fulton, John -- 200 - 6p --1752 -- Moffett Cr. adjoining Thomas Beard -- sold to Thomas Fulton, 1758 for 40p.
Hill, Thomas -- 50--2p--1754 corner to Thomas Beard
Logan, John -- 195 - 6p 15s --1755 -- adjoining Thomas Beard.
Pollack, William -- 190-30p-1765 - adjoining Thomas Beard and John Montgomery
Dunlap, David -- to Hugh Beard - 170-29p-1757 adjoining John Cunningham and William Lockridge.
Young, Daniel - to Samuel Beard -- 260-12p-1764 - Snoden's Spring.