Notes on the Bracewells
Robert Bracewell (Robert I) was born in England in 1612, the son of Richard Bracewell (Richard I) of London. Robert I entered Hart Hall of Oxford College on February 22, 1627/28 at age 15. He received his A.B. degree on November 3, 1631 and must have been ordained as a minister or parson. He came to the Colonies (Virginia) before 1651 and is known in many of the records of Isle of Wight County, Virginia as Parson Bracewell. He was chosen to the House of Burgess from Isle of Wight County in 1653 but was not allowed to serve. The record says that he was suspended because he "is not in a capacitie of serving as a Burgesse, since it is unpresidentiall and may produce bad consequence." He died in about 1668, leaving a library valued at 500 pounds of tobacco. This biographical information is from the reference, "The Colonial Church in Virginia" by Goodwin, page 253. The following information on the children of Robert I (Parson) Bracewell comes from records of Isle of Wight County, Virginia. The dates of the marriages given below would tend to indicate that if Robert I came to this country near the year 1651, some of his children may have been born in England and came over with him.
Children of Robert I (Parson) Bracewell were:
- Robert II (Jr.) known as clerk. It is not known at present if "clerk" is a title or vocation. However, it is used by his name in many of the records and distinguishes him from his father. He is listed as eldest son of Parson Bracewell on page 588 of Isle of Wight by Broddie and as son of Robert, the Minister, in the William & Mary Quarterly, Vol. 7, page 229. He received a gift of land from his father on January 16, 1660. Based upon this record Robert II (clerk) was probably born around 1635. His year of death, around 1674 is based upon a land transaction found in Isle of Wight by Broddie, page 569, where Robert Braswell, son of Robert (clerk), sells land where James Bagnall lives to said James Bagnall, Robert’s father, Robert, Clerk, dec’d, lived there and gave same to him in deed of gift. The James Bagnall mentioned here was the husband of Ann Bracewell, daughter of Parson Bracewell and sister of Robert, clerk. The date of the above land transaction was August 27, 1674
- Ann, b. c.1648, m. James Bagnall 1667. She was listed as daughter of Robert (I).
- Jane, b. c. 1649. m. Robert Stoikes 1667. She was listed as daughter of Robert (I).
- Rebecca, b. c. 1650, m. William West 1668. She was listed as daughter of Robert (I), the minister. William West participated in the Bacon’s Rebellion and was at odds with the Governor of Virginia for a while. Rebecca must have died in the late 1600’s because William’s will dated 1708, has his wife listed as "Martha". The children in William West’s will were daughter, Rebecca West, Mary, wife of William Green, and sons Richard, William, and Robert.
Children of Robert II (Robert, Jr. or Clerk) b. c. 1635, d. c. 1674 were:
- Robert III, b. c. 1655 d. c. 1714. Wife: Susanna b. _____d. c. 1732. The proof of Robert III being the son of Robert II, clerk is found in the land transaction with James Bagnall mentioned earlier. I believe Susanna was his wife because of the record in 17th Century Isle of Wight by Broddie, page 627, which says Robert Bracewell appoints wife Susanna to be his attorney in Isle of Wight, 27 March 1696. This was probably power of attorney. His date of death is based on the date Susanna’s will was written. In the book, Wills and Administration Isle of Wight, Book 2 1640-1800, page 61, Susanna’s will is dated Oct. 22, 1714 and was read in early 1732. Susanna lists in her will sons: Richard (Richard II from now on), William, James, daughter Ann, granddaughter Elizabeth, and grandson John Riggs (probably son of daughter Ann who may have married a Riggs.) I believe this is the line of Bracewells which eventually settled in Laurens County, Georgia.
- Richard IIA (This Richard was son of Robert II (Clerk) and is given the number identification of IIA so as not to confuse him with Richard II, son of Robert III above.) b. c. 1655 d. c. 1724/25. w. Sarah d. 1733. He is listed as son of Robert, page 588, Isle of Wight Records. Richard IIA (may also have been known as Richard Sr.) and his wife and children were listed as heirs to Robert, clerk, 28 June 1673. Richard IIA’s will is found in Wills and Administration Isle of Wight county, Book 2, 1640-1800. An abstract of the will follows:
Braswell, Richard: Leg-sons Richard; Robert; Valentine; Jacob; John; daughters, Ann Strickland, Martha Murfrey, Jane Williams; Granddaughter Susannah Braswell, Extx; wife Sarah. D. July 28, 1724/25
- Jane b. c. 1660. I am not sure if she was the daughter of Robert II (Clerk) but her marriage is given in Isle of Wight county records and says she married John Roberts in 1680 and she was the sister of Richard Braswell. The date of her marriage, and assuming she was 18-20 years of age when married, would indicate the Richard was Richard IIA above.
Children of Robert III b. c. 1655 d. c. 1714 were:
- Richard II, b. c. 1700/10 d. c. 1767. Probably moved to North Carolina from Virginia around 1720/21 where land grants were being made. There is a record of a Richard Bracewell receiving land by patent in Chowan Precinct in 1721. There are also records of many land transactions involving Bracewells in Bertie County during the 1721’s. According to an article that appeared in the Weekly Gwinnett Hearld of Lawrenceville, GA on Oct. 8, 1879, Richard II had two wives. By the first wife he had one child, a son, Robert, who served in the Revolutionary War. The United States Archives has no record of a Robert Braswell (Bracewell) having served but it was not uncommon for men to serve but not have a record of service kept. Richard II remarried and his will is found in the book Abstracts of Wills, Edgecombe County, N. C. 1733-1856. The will shows his wife, Elizabeth, as executrix and son James, executor. The will, dated Dec. 7. 1767, shows in addition to James, the following sons: Sampson, Solomon, Richard (III from now on), William, and daughters Sarah, Mary, and This Elizabeth may be the one mentioned in Susanna Bracewell’s will as granddaughter. She may have also been the first girl born to the Bracewells in the new world.
In Abstracts of Early Deeds of Edgecombe County 1759-1772, Richard II deeded land to Sampson in 1760 and to James in 1755. Assuming James to be the eldest son and being given land first, he must have been born around 1730 and Sampson around 1735/40.
Children of Richard II, b. c. 1700/10 d. c. 1767
- Elizabeth, b. c. 1728. The date of her birth is based upon Susanna’s will, Robert III’s wife, which was read on June 26, 1732, and mentioned granddaughter Elizabeth. Elizabeth may have been the oldest child and named for her mother. Since no other grandchildren are mentioned in Susanna’s will, they may have been born after 1732.
- Sampson I, b. c. 1740 d. c. 1805/10 in GA. May have married a Miss Moore on May 31, 1762. Sampson’s name is found frequently in the deed books of Edgecombe County, N.C. between 1757 to 1780. Some of these are: He witnessed a deed on Nov. 10, 1757; Received land from Richard (R) Bracewell (Richard II) on March 21, 1760 that was adjacent to James Bracewell, Mary witnessed; Sampson witnessed, also William, Solomon witnessed buying land from Thomas Farmer that had originally belonged to Richard Sr. (II), then to Richard, Jr. (III), then to Farmer; dated July 4, 1778; On April 15, 1780 Sampson bought land adjacent to James on south side of Tar River and on Hendrick’s Creek. Sampson was probably taking part in the Revolutionary War about this time. Sampson, his brother Richard III, and perhaps other brothers moved from North Carolina to Georgia around 1780. When he got to Georgia, he sought 287½ acres of land in Washington County, Georgia, as a grant for having served as a Minuteman in 1777. A certificate of Col. James Jackson, dated July 19, 1784, shows Sampson I entitled to bounty of 250 acres. Sampson (listed in error as Swanson) Braswell was granted 287 1/2 acres in Washington County, Georgia and grant was recorded in Book III page 457. Grant was made in 1786. (Although the application and grant does not say that his service in the Revolution was in another state, it seems most probably that he was in N.C. at that time.) It is certain he was in Georgia in 1794 because of a reference from Kinfolks of Edgecombe County concering a land transaction which says Sampson Bracewell of Washington County, Georgia, was the son of Richard Bracewell, deceased and dated Dec. 14, 1795. He also participated in the 1805 Land Lottery of Georgia drawing a blank for land. In this same land lottery was a Sampson, Sr. I believe this was his son who was born about 1765/70. Sampson I is believed to have died between 1803 and 1818. This date is based on a land transaction between Sampson, Sr. (Sampson II from now on) and his wife Elizabeth and John R. Irvine. Sampson II and Elizabeth sold land that they had gotten as legatees of Sampson Bracewell, deceased. Sampson I had obtained the land by deed on April 21, 1803. The sale is recorded in the Laurens County, Georgia, courthouse.
- Richard III b. c. 1730 in N. C. and died in Georgia, Laurens County, around 1785. He married Agnes Proctor in 1764/65 and moved to Briar Creek in Burke County, Georgia, around 1780. The climate there proved to be very deleterious to the health of the family and several died. He moved from Burke County to Washington County in 1782. He settled on the Oconee River in a part of Washington County, which later became Laurens County. He had a large family but in a few years all of his children died except three: Richard IV, Sampson, and Elizabeth. The above information was taken from the account of William B. Bracewell published in the Gwinnett County Journal in Lawrenceville, Georgia, on October 8, 1879.
- Solomon, Sr., b. c. 1733 d. c. 1798. A marriage of Solomon Braswell and Rachel Bird on Dec. 24, 1765 is given in early marriage records of North Carolina. An inventory of Solomon, Sr.’s property is given in Estate Records of Edgecombe County, N. C. 1730-1820 by Watson. The nine heirs listed (other records indicate these were children of Solomon) as receiving property were: William, Elizabeth Boykin w/o Thomas Boykin, Mary Britt, w/o William Britt, Richard, Nelly, Reddick, Topping, Charity, and Winney. James and Admiral had already received their full share during their father’s lifetime. James was administrator. Solomon, Jr. was also a son but he had died around 1795.
In Abstracts of Early Deeds of Edgecombe County, Elizabeth is shown as: Wife of Solomon, Sr., date March 30, 1794. However, she is not listed in the inventory of his estate. She may have been his 2nd wife and was not included in the inventory or she may have been dead at that time.
Solomon, Sr.’s son, Reddick, may have moved to Laurens County, Georgia in the early 1800’s. A gravestone in the Bracewell Cemetery in Laurens County has the following inscription: Redrick Bracewell, b. 1785 d. 1866, son of Solomon and Rachel.
Children of Sampson I, b. c. 1740 d. c. 1805/10
- Sampson II (Sr.) b, c, 1760/70 d, c, 1734/38. Sampson II probably came to Georgia with his father, Sampson I, around 1780 and settled in what is now Laurens County, Georgia. His wife was Elizabeth and they were listed as legatees of Sampson Braswell (I) deceased, in a deed record where they sold the land they had received, date of sale 1818. I believe Sampson II (Sr.) had at least two sons: Sampson III (Jr.) and Seaborn. Sampson, Jr. (III) is listed in the 1830 census of Laurens County as having a male in his household between 60 and 70 years old. This was probably Sampson II (Sr.). He is listed as serving jury duty in 1833 but not in the 1838 census so he may have died between 1833-38. An Elizabeth Bracewell (may have been Sampson II (Sr)’s wife) is listed in the 1838 census and in the 1840. She may have died in the 1840’s.
There is good evidence to indicate that many of the Bracewells now living in Laurens, Dodge, and Bleckley counties of Georgia are the decendants of Sampson I and Sampson II (Sr.).
Children of Richard III b. c. 1730 in N.C. and d. c. 1785 in GA.
- Richard IV b. c. 1766 d. c. 1818. Married Charity Scarborough in 1793/94. Their first child was James, born June 5, 1794 in Allen’s Fort, Laurens County, Georgia. Richard and Charity had three more sons: Richard V, Wiley, and William. Charity died in 1804 and Richard IV later married a Miss Carlisle and had two sons, Kindred and Allen, by this marriage. Richard IV died on September 3, 1818 at about 50 years of age. The following information comes from the Minutes of Inferior Court of Laurens County: On Tuesday, January 5, 1819, it was ordered that a letter of administration on the estate of Richard Bracewell, deceased, be granted to James Bracewell, on his giving bond with Bryan Allen and Sampson Bracewell, securities in the sum of $10,000. The security for James Bracewell was discharged on November 6, 1821 and the estate settled. On page 142, a motion was made that George Linder be appointed guardian for Kindred and Allan Bracewell, minors of Richard Bracewell, deceased, and dated Monday November 6, 1820.
Children of Richard IV b. c. 1766 in N.C. d. 1818
- James b. June 5, 1794 d. Dec. 12, 1875. First child of Richard IV and Charity (Scarborough) Bracewell. Born at Allen’s Fort, Laurens County, GA. Moved to Morgan County to open retail business in 1817, bankrupt in 1820 when a friend failed to pay a note he had co-signed. Sheriff sold his possessions at auction to satisfy creditor in 1821. Married Elizabeth Butler on May 10, 1820. Moved back to Laurens County, GA in 1823. Moved to Gwinnett County, GA in December of 1823. Joined the Methodist Episcopal Church at Borings Campground in 1824-25 (Now Bethesda Church). Moved to land of Joseph Boney (Lawrenceville, GA) 1835-1859. Moved one mile South of Lawrenceville in August of 1862 for short time. Moved in with son, J. R. Bracewell, four miles north of Stone Mountain, GA in 1864 until death, Dec. 12, 1875.
- Richard V b. 1797 d. c. 1880 in Laurens County, Georgia. Richard V was a bachelor for many years and lived in the family of his brother, William, until the early 1830’s. At that time he married a widow, Lucinda Nobles, who was the daughter of James Spiers. Lucinda Spiers had married Levi Nobles on May 11, 1828. Levi was killed by being thrown from a horse against a pine tree on the road to Dublin, Georgia. It is believed that Lucinda was left a widow before their son could be born. When the son was born Lucinda gave him the name of his father, Levi Nobles.
Lucinda and Richard V must have been married in early 1833. Records from the "Minutes of the Inferior Court of Laurens County" show that Richard Bracewell was appointed guardian for Levi Nobles in July 1833.
The 1850 census for Laurens County, GA shows:
BRACEWELL, Richard age 53
The 1860 census shows the following:
BRACEWELL, Richard age 62 born in GA
James W 22
Mary 14 (May have been zephany)
Since Lucinda is not shown in the 1860 census, she may have died in the 1850’s. Richard V later married a Miss Allen and this marriage produced one son, James.
The 1870 census shows Richard, age 72, in the household of his son James W.
Richard V’s will was found in Will Book B, pages 101-102 in the office of Probate Judge in Laurens County. The will says: to his daughter, Ziphorah Bracewell 25.00 dollars and everything else to his daughter Louisa Jane Wyatt (wife of James Wyatt) because she had looked after him. The will was filed Dec. 3, 1880 and probated January 1881.
- Wiley Bracewell-
Very little is known about Wiley Bracewell. A Wiley Bracewell is shown marrying Aggie Doorman on November 9, 1820 in Laurens County. He is also listed in the Land Lotteries Of Georgia, 1820-21. He apparently was granted land in Henry County.
- Kindred Bracewell-
Kindred is thought to have been in Houston County, GA in 1840. No further information is available at this time.
- Allen Bracewell-
Allen Bracewell was listed as invalid for enlistees of 55 Reg’t of Georgia Militia on May 28, 1836. This was in Houston County.
6. William Bracewell, b. Oct. 13, 1801, d. c. 1869. His brother James had inherited everything from their father, Richard IV. William married Elizabeth Stephens on January 24, 1819. Elizabeth died in 1862 and it is not known if William remained in Laurens County or died near Lawrenceville, Georgia as reported in one source.
His 14 children were born over the period of 26 years. Two of his sons, James Newton and Joseph Marion, moved to Texas in the 1870’s. Four of his daughters married men in Gwinnett County named E. Harris, S. Harris, Mr. H.O.M., and a Mr. Mathews.
Children of William Bracewell b. Oct. 13, 1801 d. c. 1869
- James Newton, b. Oct. 1820. Married Emily Eliza Jackson in Rapides Parish, Louisiana February 29, 1849. Lived in Point Coupee Parish until 1862, then moved to St. Landry Parish, and later moved to Corsicana, Texas in the spring of 1875. Of his 14 children, only 7 lived to maturity.
- William Jasper b. April 6, 1821
- Mathew b. Feb. 16, 1823
- Uriah, b. Jan. 13, 1825
- Richard Riley, b. Jan. 9, 1827
- Artimacil, b. Nov. 14, 1828. Married a Mr. Barnes, is buried in Huntsville, Texas.
- Mary Ann, b. March 29, 1830
- Benjamin Stevens, b. Feb. 28, 1832
- Joseph Marion, b. Jan. 13, 1834, d. Sept. 13, 1906
- Elizabeth, b. March 26, 1837
- Sarah Ann, b. Oct. 21, 1838
- Rhoda Ann, b. Feb. 25, 1841
- David Jackson, b. July 25, 1844, d. Dec. 19, 1844
- Nancy Ann, b. Jan. 23, 1846
Children of Sampson II (Sr.) b. c. 1760/70 d. c. 1834/38
- Sampson III (Jr.) b. Oct. 13, 1804, d. January 25, 1860.
He is listed on page 407 of the 1860 Mortality Census of Georgia as having died in Jan. 1860 after having been sick for only two days, cause of death unknown. He was married to Ridley Kinchen, b. Nov. 15, 1807, d. Sept. 8, 1867. Sampson III (Jr.) and Ridley were members of the group that founded Rock Springs Baptist Church in Laurens County.
Sampson III (Jr.) and his wife Ridley are buried in the Smith Cemetery Glenwood Highway in Laurens County.
- Seaborn A. Bracewell, b. Dec. 5, 1814 in Georgia, d. Jan. 26, 1886 in Laurens County, Georgia.
Seaborn, I believe, was the brother of Sampson III (Jr.) and son of Sampson II (Sr.). This belief is based upon a reference made by Jesse A. Bracewell, son of Seaborn, in a letter Jesse wrote to his mother and father from Gettysburg during the Civil War. He speaks of Wiley (son of Sampson III (Jr.) as cousin being wounded and left on the battlefield. It is now known that Wiley died and I believe is buried at Gettysburg. Assuming Jesse and Wiley to be first cousins, Sampson III (Jr.) and Seaborn would have been brothers.
On January 15,1838, Seaborn A. Bracewell married Roxa Ann Woolf. The date of marriage is found in Book E in the Probate Judge’s office of Laurens County. Roxa Ann Woolf was born April 6, 1819 and died April 2, 1882.
Seaborn and Roxa Ann are buried in the Smith Cemetery in Laurens County, Georgia.
Seaborn was a farmer and served as Tax Collector for Laurens County at one time. He and his wife, Roxey Ann, along with Sampson III (Jr.) and his wife, Ridley, started and became charter members of the Rock Springs Baptist Church in Laurens County.
Children of Sampson III (Jr.) b. October 13, 1804, d. Jan. 25, 1860.
- William S. A. b. May 18, 1837, d. Feb. 19, 1923 married March 4, 1857 to Sarah Williams b. Oct. 18, 1839 d. June 23, 1915. Both are buried in Smith Cemetery in Laurens County.
- Wiley, b. 1839, served with Laurens County Volunteers, 49th GA regiment, G, in Civil War. Killed in Battle of Gettysburg on July 2, 1863. Buried inCo. Gettysburg Cemetery.
- Sarah, b. 1846
- Seaborn Thomas, b. Feb. 11, 1849, d. June 28, 1930, buried in Rock Springs Church Cemetery, married Dec. 12, 1872 Lougenia Harden b. Nov. 17, 1854, d. July 3, 1931.
- Ridley Amelia, b. 1851, d. 1879, buried in Smith Cemetery, married Henry Harden.
- James (difficult to make out initial from 1860 census records) may be J, g, or R. he following information is given assuming it to be R.) b. March 17, 1854, d. July 10, 1917, buried in Bracewell Cemetery on Rock Springs Road in Laurens County. Married Susan Branch on Sept. 28, 1875. Her date of birth April, 1854.
Children of Seaborn A. Bracewell b. Dec. 5, 18814 d. Jan. 26. 1886
The information on the children of Seaborn was taken from the record of the division of his property found in Division Book B in Laurens County Courthouse and from census records.
1. Georgiana, b. Nov. 27, 1838 d. Sept. 20, 1890. Buried in Rock Springs Church Church Cemetery. Married May 11, 1866 to Leander Harden. (She was his second wife.
2. John C., b. April 1841, d. 1920 in Laurens County. Served with Laurens County Volunteers in Civil War, wounded, left arm disabled, at Mechanicsville, VA., Discharged on account of wounds Feb. 11, 1864. Married Elizabeth __________ date unknown.
3. Jesse A., b. March 1, 1844, d. 1916 in Laurens County. Served with Laurens County. Served with Laurens County Volunteers in Civil War. Wounded at Battle of Gettysburg, captured at Petersburg, VA, April 3, 1865, released at Hart’s Island, NY on June 15, 1865. Married Elizabeth Tobitha Hester (date unknown). Tobitha was born April, 1847 and died around 1907. Both are buried in Woolf Cemetery in Laurens County.
4. Bryant, b. 1847
5. Robert S., born November 13, 1848, d. Sept. 14, 1918, buried in Smith Cemetery.
6. Sarah (Betty) b. 1850 d. ?, married Thomas F. Lock, December 22, 1868
7. Allie, b. 1854, d. around 1920, m. A. B. Holliday July 3, 1874
8. Joseph, b. 1855, d. before 1900
9. James (Jim), b. 1858
10. Roxey A. b. 1858, m. Joe Harden, may be buried in Rock Springs.
11. Piety, b. 1861
Children of William S.A. Bracewell:
William S.A. Bracewell, son of Sampson III (Jr.) was born May 18, 1837, d. Feb. 19, 1923, buried in Smith Cemetery in Laurens County, m. March 4, 1857 Sarah Williams, b. Oct. 18, 1839 d. June 23, 1915, buried in Smith Cemetery. William S. A. fought with the Laurens County Volunteers, 49th Regt., Co. G, in the Civil War. The 1900 census for Laurens County lists him as a farmer with real property valued at $800 and personal at $600. William S.A.’s will is recorded in Will Book C., page 328, Laurens County Courthouse. His children were:
- William D. b. 1858
- Mourning, b. 1860
- Wiley, b. 1863
- Queen Eliz. B. 1864
- James, b. 1866
- John F., b. 1869
- Marrin F. b. 1871
- Sarah, b. 1875
- Joseph, b. 1879
- Ida, b. 1877
- Earlie, b. July 11, 1886, d. Feb. 12, 1904, buried Smith Cemetery
- Sampson A., b. March 22, 1861, d. June 29, 1938
Children of Jesse A. Bracewell b. March 1, 1844, d. 1916, son of Seaborn A. Bracewell.
- Berry (Seaborn Asberry) b. c. 1867 d. c. 1957
- Edna, b. April 1, 1870, d. Jan. 27, 1949
- Molly, b. 1872, d. late 1930’s
- Robert L. (Uncle Bud) b. Dec. 1874, d. c. 1933.
- Ellen, b. 1876, d. around 1940
- Minnie Arletta, b. March 10, 1877, d. Dec. 1, 1959
- Harvey, b. Dec. 1881, d. c. 1970
- Nita, b. June 5, 1883, d. July 5, 1964.
- Tom, b. April 1888, d. ?
- James Eckels, b. April 10. 1884, d. Oct. 10, 1958.
- Nathan, b. June 1884, d. c. 1938.
- Willie Freeman, b. May 2, 1891, d. July 1, 1960.
Children of James Eckels Bracewell, b. April 10, 1884, d. Oct 10, 1958. Son of Jessie A. Bracewell.
- Justin James Bracewell, b. July 16, 1916
- Walter Robert, b. November 4, 1918, d. Dec. 8, 1939.
- Bertie, b. c. 1920
Children of Willie Freeman Bracewell, b. May 2, 1891, d. July 1, 1960. Son of Jesse A. Bracewell.
- Mavis, b. May 2, 1912
- Myrtis (Sis), b. June 30, 1914
- Thelma, b. Dec. 31, 1915
- Oris, b. June 21, 1919, d. March 1976
- Johnnie, b. April 27, 1921
- Mary Van, b. Dec. 22, 1923
- Evelyn, b. Sept. 8, 1925
- Wilbur, b. June 28, 1929
Children of Justin James Bracewell, b. July 16, 1916, son of James Eckels Bracewell.
- James Ronald Bracewell, Sr. b. July 7, 1936
- Robert David Bracewell, Sr. b. Dec. 5, 1939
- Walter Leslie Bracewell, b. Sept. 9, 1942
NOTES ON BRACEWELL FAMILY
ROBERT BRACEWELL I (Parson, Minister, Clerk). The following biographical information on Robert (Parson) Bracewell is from the reference, “The Colonial Church in Virginia” by Goodwin, page 253. Robert I was born 1612 in England, the son of Richard Bracewell (Richard I) of London. Robert I entered Hart Hall of Oxford College on Feb. 22, 1627/28 at age 15. He received his A.B. degree on November 3, 1631.
Robert I must have come to Virginia, Isle of Wight County, prior to the end of 1650 because in Capt. John Upton’s will, dated 16 Jan. 1651, he is mentioned as having 300 acres of land. (William & Mary College Quarterly, Series 1, Vol. 7, 1899, page 220).
In many of the Isle of Wight county records the name Robert is followed by, Parson, minister, or clerk. It is believed that all of these titles indicate the same person. The word “clerk” is derived from the Latin “clericus” or priest. It may also have been used to indicate a minor (lay) official connected with a parish church, one of whose duties was formerly to lead the responses.
Robert I was chosen to the House of Burgess, Colony of Virginia, Isle of Wight County, in 1653 but was not allowed to serve. The record (Goodwin) says that he was suspended because he “is not in a capacitie of serving as a Burgesse, since it is unpresidentiall and may produce bad consequence.”
The will of Robert Bracewell, dated Feb. 1667 and probated May 1, 1667 indicates his death in early 1667. (Wm. and Mary College Quarterly, Vol. 7, pages 235-236). The will states, “Sons Robert and Richard shall be putt to schoole until they can both write and read.” He died leaving a library valued at 500 pounds of tobacco. (Goodwin)
The following information on the children of Robert I (Parson) Bracewell comes from records of Isle of Wight County, VA. The dates of the marriages given below would tend to indicate that if Robert I came to this country near the year 1651, some of his children may have been born in England and came over with him.
Children of Robert I (Parson) Bracewell were:
- Ann, married James Bagnall 1667. Listed as daughter of Robert, minister. (Marriages of Isle of Wight, 1628-1800) She must have been born ca. 1650.
- Jane, b. ca. 1649, m. Robert Stoikes 1667. Listed as daughter of Robert, minister. (Marriages of Isle of Wight)
- Rebecca, b. ca. 1650, m. William West 1668. Listed as daughter of Robert, minister. (Isle of Wight Marriages). William West participated in Bacon’s Rebellion and was at odds with the Governor of Virginia for a while. Rebecca must have died in the late 1600’s because William’s will dated 1708, has his wife listed as “Martha”. The children in William West’s will were daughters, Rebecca West, Mary, wife of William Green, and sons, Richard, William, and Robert.
- Robert II (Jr.), b. ca. 1650. He is listed as the eldest son of Robert Bracewell, Parson of L. P. (Note: L. P. is probably an abbreviation for a parish. Just which one is unknown at present.) The reference is from the book 17th Century Isle of Wight County, VA. By Broddie and says, James Bagnall escheats (lays claim to) a parcel of land 300 acres which did formerly belong to Robert Bracewell, and 2 acres adjacent to the mill, which mill and 2 acres of land Mr. Robert Bracewell gave to his son Richard, now in possession of William West. (No date) There is from the same book, page 569, a record where Robert Braswell, son of Robert, clerk, sells land where James Bagnall lives to said James Bagnall.
The wife of Robert II (Jr.) is believed to have been Susanna (maiden name unknown at present). This is based upon the record in 17th Century Isle of Wight by Broddie, page 627, which says Robert Bracewell appoints wife Susanna to be his attorney in Isle of Wight, 27 March 1696. This was probably power of attorney. His date of death is based upon the date Susanna’s will was written. In the book Wills and Administration, Isle of Wight, Book 2, 1649-1800, page 61, Susanna’s will is dated Oct. 22, 1714 and was read on June 26, 1732. Susanna lists in her will sons: Richard, Richard II from now on, William, James, daughter Ann, granddaughter Elizabeth, and grandson John Riggs, (probably son of daughter Ann who may have married a Riggs). It is believed this is the line of Bracewells which eventually settled in Laurens County, Georgia.
- Richard IIA (son of Robert, clerk, and given number identification IIA so as not to confuse him with Richard II, son of Robert II, (Jr.). Richard IIA is also referred to as Sr. b. ca. 1655, d. ca. 1724/25. W. Sarah, d. ca. 1733. Richard IIA (Sr.) is listed as son and heir of Robert Bracewell, clerk and Sarah his wife and children, 28 June 1673. (page 229, Wm. and Mary Quarterly, Vol. 7). Richard IIA’s will is found in Wills and Administration Isle of Wight, Book 2, 1640-1800 An abstract of the will gives:
Braswell, Richard: Leg-sons, Richard, Robert, Valentine, Jacob, John, daughters: Ann Strickland, Martha Murfrey, Jane Williams; granddaughter Susannah Braswell, Extx; wife Sarah. Dated July 28, 1724/25.
- Jane, b, ca, 1660. I am not sure if she was the daughter of Robert (Parson) but her marriage is given in Isle of Wight records and says she married John Roberts in 1680 and she was sister of Richard Braswell. The date of marriage and assuming she was 18-20 years of age when married, would indicate the Richard was Richard IIA (Sr.).
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