John and Ann Nancy Owen Taylor

Using information from Ann K. Blomquist’s well researched book, Taylors and Tates of the South, and information from, here is a time line for James Taylor and Ann Nancy Owen.

1731 – James Taylor, son of William and Mary Hughes Taylor, was born February 28, 1731, probably in Goochland or Henrico, British America, now Virginia. According to Blomquist, birth information for James was based on the Taylor family Bible.

1738 – Ann Nancy Owen, daughter of George and Elinor Owen, was born September 25, 1738 in Charles City, Charles, British America, now Virginia.

1755 – James Taylor and Ann Nancy Owen married on December 3, 1755 in Cumberland, British America, now Virginia. According to Blomquist, their marriage was not included in the extant lists of marriages, but some early records are lost. The date was recorded in the Taylor family Bible.

1756 – On May 29, 1756, James Taylor bought 100 acres of land in Cumberland County from Daniel Mayo. He retained this land until 1770 when he and Ann moved southward to Pittsylvania County. Their first six children were born while living in Cumberland County.

1757-1769     Between the years of 1757 and 1769, James and Ann had six children – Charity (1757), George (1759), Daniel Owen (1761), Martha “Patsy” (1764), Elizabeth “Betty” (1766), and Mary (1769). All were born in Cumberland County.

1762 – James purchased 50 acres of land in Southam Parish from Bartholomew Stovall and sold it a month later to his younger brother George Taylor.

1770 – In May 1770, James Taylor sold his 100 acres farm in Cumberland County to James Drake. Three witnesses to the sale were James Taylor (first cousin), William Taylor (either his father or brother) and George Owen (father-in-law). James, Ann and children moved to Pittsylvania County, Virginia. It is possible he rented a farm or lived with brother, William until he determined where he wanted to live.

During this time, Ann Taylor was in ill health. In some of his correspondence, James writes of her weakened condition at the end letter.James Taylor letter 1James Taylor letter 2 (Click on links)

1771- In May 1771, James purchased 319 acres in Pittsylvania County onMarrowbone Creek.

1772-1778 -Between the years 1772 and 1778, James and Ann had three more children – Nancy (1772), Kissiah (1775) and Hughes Owen (1778).All three were born in Pittsylvania County (Henry County formed in1776-1777, partly from Pittsylvania County, including James Taylor’s land/farm.)

1775-1783     “When the American Revolution began, Virginia contributed both the famous and the ordinary. The James Taylor family did their share. James provided beef for the patriot forces (and filed a claim after the war for reimbursement). His two oldest sons also served, George as a lieutenant and Daniel as a private. It is a family tradition that James also served, but the author (Blomquist) has found no evidence or proof. Though James is listed in several sources a Revolutionary War soldier, no term of service, unit, or commanders are given. If he served, he would have been in his mid-forties and Ann would have been left to care for six girls and the family farm.” (Blomquist, p. 46)

1777-1794     In April 1779, James Taylor, now of Henry County (Henry County was formed in 1776-1777 partly from Pittsylvania County), purchased 100 acres of land, also on Marrowbone Creek, from George Rowland. James son, Daniel, witnessed the deed. Five months later, James sold this land. In January 1783, he sold 119 acres of his Marrowbone tract to his son-in-law John May leaving him with only a 200 acre farm tract.

In February 1787, James received a grant of 207 acres adjoining his 200 acre farm, and then, in January 1794, he sold 37 acres to his son-in-law John May. He owned his remaining 370 acres until he and Ann left in 1794.

1797 – By 1797, all of James and Ann’s children and families had moved from Henry County, Virginia. Perhaps all of them were seeking “greener pastures.” James sold his land in Henry County on September 2, 1797 to David Mullins. James’ son George was one of the witnesses. After living in Henry County 26 years, James, Ann, sons Daniel and Hughes, and two married daughters (Cannon and Witt) with families moved to Grainger County, Tennessee between September 1797 and October 4, 1797. That was quite an entourage, and undoubtedly, the move must have been very difficult for Ann who was in ill health.

On October 4, 1797, James purchased 229 acres in Grainger County, Tennessee, near Crosby Station. Son Daniel and son-in-law Joel Witt were witnesses to the sale.

1813 – James Taylor wrote his will in October 1813. The early record book of wills in Grainger County no longer exists, but copies of his will have survived in the family. The inventory of the estate and the disposition of the estate are not known.

1814-1815 – On April 12, 1814, Ann Nancy Owen Taylor died at the age of 75, and one year later, on April 4, 1815, James died. He was 84. Both were buried on a family plot on their farm in Grainger County, Tennessee.

“In 1912, nearly one hundred years after their deaths, some of their descendants formed the James Taylor Memorial Association and erected a fine monument for James and Ann in the family cemetery. They also purchased an iron fence for their plots. In 1941, the Taylor cemetery was scheduled to be flooded by the Cherokee Lake reservoir being built by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). So, their remains and marker were moved to nearby Bethesda Cemetery in Hamblen County.” (Blomquist, p. 49)

James and Ann Taylor Grave Marker

Blomquist writes it is evident that James and Ann had great affection for each other. This is shown in correspondence to his children. “In one letter, he said that ‘I take great pleasure in waiting on her.’ In another he wished ‘to spend my days with your mother if it is the Lord’s will to spare her to me.’ In several letters, he commented that ‘he had not spent the night away from Ann in four years.’ (Blomquist, p. 48)

Sources U.S. Census Reconstructed Records, 1660-1820 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2011. U.S., Sons of the American Revolution Membership Applications, 1889-1970 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2011. Virginia, Select Marriages, 1785-1940 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc, 2014. Tennessee Valley Cemetery Relocation Files, 1933-1990 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2014. Web: Tennessee, Relocated Cemeteries Index, 1787-1975 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. Web: Tennessee, Find A Grave Index, 1777-2012 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2012.

Blomquist, Ann, Taylor and Tates of the South, Gateway Press, Inc., 1993.

Graden, Debra, ed.. Revolutionary War Pension Index [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2000.

Yates Publishing. U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2004.





John and Charity Taylor May

Using information from two well researched books – Ann K. Blomquist’s Taylors and Tates of the South, and Jim W. Kuhlman’s The History of the Nance Hereford Ranch – here is a time line for John and Charity Taylor May.


Charity Taylor, the oldest child of James and Ann Owen Taylor, was born June 6, 1757, in Cumberland, Virginia. (See notes below)


John May, son of James Harvey and Elizabeth King May, was born November 1760 in Essex County, Virginia.


John began his service in the Revolutionary War in April 1777, in Henry County, Virginia. His company served for 3 months in Christy’s Campaign against the Cherokee Indians.


John May and Charity Taylor were married June 24, 1779 in Henry County, Virginia.


Beginning in December of 1779, John was a “mounted gunman”and served for 12 months.


John served the third time in the summer of 1781 as a substitute for Mile Jennings (military).


John and Charity had 9 children between 1780 & 1794 – Phalby, son, Isabelle, Leroy, son, William, son, son and Charity.


John May was listed in the tax records beginning in 1782. He did not own land at that time, but he owned and was taxed on 2 horses and 5 head of cattle. He continued to appear in the tax lists in 1786, 1788, 1789, 1790, 1791, 1793 and 1794. In 1787, his tax included slaves that he owned.


In January 1783, John bought 119 acres of land on Marrowbone Creek from father-in-law, James Taylor.


John and Charity May had 5 more children between 1796 & 1803, son, Nellie, George, Mary and Peter.


John May sells Marrowbone Creek land and the May family “began moving as a pioneer family.” John May bought 120 acres on the south side of the Swannanoa River (Buncombe County, North Carolina) in October 1797. Later he added 50 more acres and then, in 1807, he sells all 170 acres to a James Wilson.


During 1807 & 1814, it is not known where the May family lived.“However, since a John May was listed in 1812 Franklin Co. TN voters list, and their son Leroy May made his home in Franklin Co. for many years, it seems reasonable to believe that the Mays lived in the Franklin Co. area.” (Blomquist)


In Grainger County, TN, John May bought a female slave name Silah from his father-in-law, James Taylor, for $400. In August 1816, he also purchased 359 ¾ acres in Blount County, TN from David Dearman. He later sold 249 acres of this tract to his wife’s kinsman, Daniel Taylor, son of Daniel Taylor and grandson of James Taylor.


On September 3, 1816, Charity writes a letter to either Martha Pittman or Edward Adams. In it, she stated that she had 13 children, but 2 sons died in TN. She states that 2 sons and 3 daughters are married at that time, with one of girls, Nellie, married to a Cherokee Indian. Charity was 59 years old, an old age considering the times and conditions. (See notes below)


John and Charity appear on the 1830 census of McMinn Co., TN.


In 1832, both John May and his brother William May filed for pensions as Revolutionary War veterans.


John May died December 28, 1839 in Polk Co., TN. In 1839, Polk Co. was formed from part of McMinn Co., so there is some question about where John and Charity were living when they died.


Charity May was included in the 1840 United States Federal Census with the James Hawkins household (son-in-law & daughter, Mary).


Charity May died December 27, 1842 in Polk Co., TN.


Adams, Lela C., Abstracts of Deed Books 5 & 6 of Henry County, Virginia, 1979. 1800 United States Federal Census [database online], Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2004. 1830 United States Federal Census [database online], Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2004.

Bell, George M., Genealogy of Old and New Cherokee Indian Families, 1972.

Blomquist, Ann K., Taylors and Tates of the South, Gateway Press, Inc., Baltimore, Maryland, 1993.

Blount County, Tennessee, Deed Books 1 & 2, County Clerk’s Office, Maryville, Tennessee.

Bunscombe County, Deed Books 3 & 4, A & B, 10 & 14, County Clerk’s Office, Asheville, North Carolina.

Crozier, William Armstrong, editor, Virginia County Records, Volume II, Virginia Colonial Militia, 1651-1776, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore, Maryland, 1986.

Dodd, Virginia Anderton, Henry County, Virginia Marriage Bonds, 1778-1849.

“Franklin County, Tennessee Historical Review,” 1988.

Grainger County, Deed Book C, County Clerk’s Office, Rutledge, Tennessee.

Henry County, Deed Books 2 & 3, County Clerk’s Office, Martinsville, Virginia.

Henry County, marriage record, County Clerk’s Office, Martinsville, Virginia.

Henry County, Tax Records, 1782-1979, County Clerk’s Office, Martinsville, Virginia.

James Taylor, will, County Clerk’s Office, Rutledge, Tennessee.

Kuhlman, Jim W., The History of the Nance Hereford Ranch, 1996.

Sheffield, Ella, Grainger County, Tennessee Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions Record Book 3, 1812-1816, 1983.

Starr, Emmett, Old Cherokee Families, Baker Publishing Co., 1987.

Stewart, William C., Gone to Georgia, 1965.

White, Virgil D., Genealogical Abstracts of Revolutionary War Pension Files, Volume II: F-M, The National Historical Publishing Co., Waynesboro, Tennessee, 1991.


  1. Charity May was the first of the 9 children of James Taylor and Ann Owen. She was probably born in Cumberland Co., VA and spent her childhood there, but about 1770, her parents moved to the part of Pittsylvania Co., VA that later became Henry Co. Like all of the Taylor daughters, Charity was educated, so she could read and write. (Blomquist, p. 88)
  2. Current information also indicates that 3 of Charity’s children married Cherokee Indians. Nellie married William Rogers (1/16 Cherokee) who came from a prominent Cherokee family. Peter married Alzira (1/16 Cherokee), a daughter of Looney Price and Nannie Rogers. And George married Mary Jane Upton whose mother was a Cherokee. This is family lore and has not been documented. (Blomquist, p. 90)
  3. Charity May’s letter transciption. Charity-Mays-Letter.pdf (click link)

John May Family Group Sheet (click link) John May FGS