Monday, February 11, 2019

William DOWNING(s) of mid-1600 Virginia

I continue to receive inquiries about the PHILIP PEYTON in my book on pages 22, 23, a descendant of the PEYTONs Along the Aquia who lived in Westmoreland and Stafford Counties, Virginia. People are confusing him with another PHILIP PEYTON, a documented indentured servant from Bristol, England, who lived in Northumberland County, Virginia. I have already written about Philip Peyton of Northumberland.

NOTE: Northumberland and Westmoreland Counties separated in 1653, and Stafford County was formed from Westmoreland in 1664. 

The latest query on PHILIP PEYTON indentured servant from Bristol, involves this record that I found in Northumberland County, 1667:
"Records of Indentured Servants and of Certificates for Land Northumberland County Virginia 1650-1795," W. Preston Haynie, 1996, pages 87, 88: "421, 20 Oct. 1667 -- Wheras by ye Complynt of Philip Peyton & ye Testamony of some of ye neighbors. It appeares ye Phil: Peyton & Nath: Garner, servts to Rich: Nelmes, have grivous sores on his legges & are very much neglected by their sd Master who taketh nor care to see ye sd sores Cured, It is ordered yt ye sd Nelmes forth endeavour to get ye sd Servts Cured & if ye next Vestry held for this parish Mr Wm Wildey & Mr Wm Downing (who are by ye Court desired to inquire into ye sd business) shall then give their report yt ye sd Nelmes hath been remiss in ye effectual performance of what here ordered yt then ye Court to be further ... therein. OB 1666-78, 12." 
Because the Northumberland Vestry of 1667, charged a "MR WM DOWNING" to give a report on the health conditions of "PHIL: PEYTON & NATH: GARNER, servts" a reader of this blog gives as proof that PHILIP PEYTON of Northumberland County is the same PHILIP PEYTON of Westmoreland and Stafford Counties who had a  number of intimate land dealings from 1700 to 1714, with a "CAPTAIN WILLIAM DOWNING" who owned land next to PHILIP PEYTON in Stafford County.

I judge the two WILLIAM DOWNINGS to be separate people, considering the time span of 33 plus years between 1667 and 1700, 1714, the different counties of residence, and their different titles. WILLIAM DOWNING of Northumberland was referred to by the title of "Mr." WILLIAM DOWNING of Westmoreland and Stafford was referred to as CAPTAIN WILLIAM DOWNING. I find no evidence of a wife for the MR. WILLIAM DOWNING, however, the wife of CAPTAIN WILLIAM DOWNING appears in land records as Diana.

In addition, during the same time span I find in the Parish Records of Christ Church, that there were two WILLIAM DOWNINGS in Middlesex County, Virginia. WILLIAM DOWNING and his wife ELIZABETH had a son named WILLIAM DOWNING, born there in 1665.

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