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My Ellis Heritage

My earliest known (to me) Ellis ancestor is JOHN ELLIS, born about 1685 in Nottoway Parish, Virginia.  John had at least three wives (probably four); my ancestor (I think!) is Mary (surname perhaps Bradley).

Their daughter Elizabeth Ellis married Thomas Walker.

Thomas Walker Sr. may be the grandson of one THOMAS WALKER who died circa 1760.  In this Thomas’s will he names a son, Thomas, and two grandsons Thomas.  One is the son of a deceased son and the other is Thomas, son of Thomas.  To this grandson Thomas, son of  Thomas, he leaves a slave, a mulatto boy, Lewis.

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In the 1784 Lunenburg County, Virginia Tax Records, Thomas Walker Jr. has a slave listed as Lewis.

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WILL OF JOHN ELLIS of Nottoway Parish
January 14, 1762
Probated April 22, 1762 by James Beuford
Filed Amelia County, Will Book 2, pp 21-32(?)

Witnesses: Charles Irby, James Beuford, Patrick Coine
Executrix: Wife Elizabeth Ellis
Executor: Son Richard Ellis
Sec: Charles Irby, John Hightower

Leg:  son William Ellis, 600 acres adjacent lines of Hardaway, Wade, Finney, Samuel Smith, line to be run from Hampton Wade’s lower corner near Jack’s branch to Finney’s nearest corner, but with condition that my son William Ellis pay my son Austin Ellis 50 pounds current Va. money in 3 years after my decease; if he refuses, then I give aforementioned land to my son Richard Ellis, and he pay son Austin 60 pounds to be raised out of my estate & paid by Ex. within 3 years after my decease; son Thomas Ellis; Thomas Walker & Betty his wife, 400 acres L/S Horsepen Creek, being land Walker now lives on & laid off by William Stokes; wife Elizabeth Ellis, labor & profits of 17 Negroes to maintain her & her family, & use & profits of plantation, together with 600 acres adj. for life or widowhood, then to son Richard Ellis; son Richard Ellis, 17 slaves, stock & furn. on plantation, also 16 other slaves, and 638 acres, the plantation he now lives on, incl. mill & land adj. both sides Great Nottoway River, & all rem. of my est.; son Richard Ellis to provide proper support & maintenance for my dau. Sarah Winn; George, Judy & Fanny [slaves] to continue to live on my plantation and not be put under an overseer; son Richard Ellis to manage and direct estate.

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I descend from two daughters of Thomas Walker and Betty EllisBarbara Walker who married Matthew Jouett Williams and Betty (probably Elizabeth) Walker who married John Sammon.

Genealogy research is addictive and certainly not everyone’s Cup of Tea.

Now, I realize that no one is interested in my Ellis/Walker/Sammon ancestors – except others who may be researching these particular families.  And I’m hoping that – by happenstance – fellow researchers will come across this site and we can exchange family information.

A distant cousin, Richard Ellis, had a distinctive Texas connection.

Ellis County is named for Richard Ellis, President of Texas’ Constitutional Convention, March, 1836. Mr. Ellis had no direct link to the county. He was a famous Texan whom the state felt needed to be remembered.

Other biographical information:

  • Born in Virginia, 1781
  • Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Alabama, 1820
  • Signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and President of the Constitutional Convention, 1836
  • Senator of the Congress of the Republic of Texas, 1836 – 1840
  • Died in Bowie County, Texas, December 20, 1846.
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