Gent'n American McGehee
McGehee Introduction and Overview:
Our American McGehees arise from the Howard and Allied Ascendacy , involve eight generations, and are entirely Southern, marrying each generation to lines also limited to America's south. Geographical areas encompassed in our direct McGehees involve Virginia of the mid 17th century [when Jamestown was capital and through which our first ancestors arrived] to the late 17th [when Williamsburg was founded and near which our family lived] and , then , Louisa County in that state to the late 18th , at which time the direct line migrated in early marriage to Georgia . There, for several generations, our McGehees are found in Elbert and Wilkes Counties . By 1850 the direct line resided in eastern Alabama [Macon and then Lee county formed from it and in the region of Auburn and later Opelika] where our Benjamin Patterson Howard , son of our last generation McGehee, spent much of his orphaned youth. Ben's McGehee mother married a native Texan , and they lived in both Texas and Alabama, present in Birmingham in the late 1880s when our Ben was born. Fannie McGehee died in Texas , a young woman of 36, and her husband Jonathan Patterson "Pat" Howard died soon after in Beaumont, Texas, Thus four states are important to this family study.
aaaOur McGehee line remains evident matrynimically with Frances Beatrice "Bea" nee Howard, named in entirity for Frances Beatrice "Fannie" McGehee, her paternal grandmother. Frances Beatrice "Bea" nee Howard, a native New Yorker born of a southern father and Irish mother in the first quarter of the 20th century and living in Manhattan NY at the time of this entry , is part of a naming pattern identifable to 1820 Georgia and so represents nearly 200 years of southern American history in which she is rightly honored and because of which she can hold substantial pride. Bea's younger sister Mary, this writer's mother, was named for the maternal Irish grandmother involved in the Williamson line of their Irish ascendancy discussed in other pages.
aaaThe McGehee /MacGregor
surname arising from the Howard
and Allied Ascendacy , holds interesting if tentative ground
against its Swope and Allied
Ascendancy counterparts among Our Peers
and Royals, If accepted, the McGehee / MacGregor ascendancy in
Scotland involves Scot Peerage within
A McGhee Family ntroduction and Overview
B) Our Direct Americans McGehee in Bio by Generation
C) Our Earliest McGehees of 17th C Va
D)Our Earliest MccGehees of Va & their purported McGregor Connection to Scotland
aaaaWhen Fannie was
still a babe, her father enlisted with the CSA. Jabe was then 25,
a husband and father of two, and is described in enlistement
papers as five feet, nine inches tall, fair complexion, black eyes,
and by occupation a painter. He belonged to 1st Co. "B". 6th Ala. Inf.
Regt. [ Company ìBî of Macon County, the ìLoachapoka Riflesî] , organized
by Captain John M. Kennedy, with William L. Rowe elected captain
when the company reorganized on April 28, 1862. Jabe was serving under
Rowe's command when he was wounded at Seven Pines, May 31, 1862 [In the
battle referred to as Fair Oaks by the northerners]. However
referred to, this battle was exceptional, terribly violent, filled
with bad weather , bad luck, rising creeks and incredible losses.
This particular company suffered immensely and displayed great courage;
Jabe's experience in this battle is enlighted in Shelby Foote's
'The Civil War: A Narrative' Volume I in the account of the attack
of Robert E. Rodes' Brigade at Seven Pines, pages 446-49.
Generation American McGehee:
I have not yet been able to find reference
to Dr William Jefferson McGehee in any primary records beyond his
1850 census listing, and have found mention of him in only one family study
by Marion Dewoody Pettigrew of 1939 entitled "Marks-Barnett
families and Their Kin ", wherein a
brief paragraph regarding this Doctor, his wife and their children
are mentioned, including reference to their son Jabe, not further
identified. That the Doctor does not reveal himself easily in Alabama or
Georgia history suprises; I had expected a physician to have been
prominent in his community. It appears, based on son Jabe's
pension entry for his place of birth , that Dr McGehee and his family
were residing in Ruckersville Georgia in the late 1830s when Jabe was born.
Ruckersvsille, [found in Elbert County ] Georgia, was a small but
thriving town when incorporatedin 1822 but at its zenith had only about
200 citizens, and most of these slaves. It did not experience continued
success and Ruckersville history is covered
in great depth from the period of its incorporation in 1822 to the period
of its demise within the book outlined the History of Elbert County,
the relevant excerpt to which is given in the previous link, in which
no reference to Dr McGehee of that place will be found. I assume from this
that Dr McGehee and family were forced from this locale. Dr William J and
Americus Booker McGehee's 5th child and 3rd son , our direct ancestor Jabus
Everett McGehee, shared the name of Americus Booker McGehee's older
brother [ an apparant half-sibling] Jabez M. McGehee. Americus brother
Jabez M perhaps got his own name from another as yet unrevealed
family member in the BOOKER / SIMPSON ascendancy of which Americus and
her brother are part. Our Jabus Everett McGehee, Dr William
Jefferson and Americus Booker McGehees son, named two children to honor
his own parents. He also named a daughter [ 6th born and 4th dtr Cornealia
"Nellie" born Feb 15 1875] for his closest eldest female sibling
[ Cornealia born ca 1835 as found in the 1850 census of William Jefferson
and Americus Booker McGehee] . Jabe's First born daughter Eleanor
Americus McGehee is called Americus in the 1860 census and when she
was 3, but was known as an adult as "Ellie". This daughter was named for
both her maternal and paternal grandmothers, while her younger brother
John William McGehee was named for both his paternal and maternal grandfathers.
Dr William Jefferson and Americus Booker McGehee had a fruitful marriage
producing 12 children. The stories of two of these 12 children directly
involve Black Hawk Mississippi, where it is known that my grandfather Benjamin
Patterson Howard and his sister Mamie [nee Howard] Diggs spent time in
the home of a cousin to their mother Fannie McGehee Howard, that
cousin being long single but finally married, and named Sally LUNDY.
The exact identification of Sally LUNDY's cousinship to Fannie McGehee
Howard has only recently been [probably] identified. Before her identification
within the family substantiating this cousinship was unearthed, it was
known that Sally LUNDY was a native of Black Hawk Mississippi
with a known brother Jim who, it is felt by Fannie McGehee
Howard's grandaughter Doris [nee Diggs] Osborne [who knew him]
to be named for his father, though Doris expresses she is uncertain how
she knows this, yet feels it to be fact. Sally LUNDY gains importance
for two reasons: She cements the identification of Dr William Jefferson
and Americus Booker McGehee as the parents of Jabus Everett McGehee, and
she holds special meaning to the children of her first cousin Fannie McGehee
Howard, Jabe's dtr, whose orphaned children very neearly felt her their
mother, one of whom was my grandfather.
As stated, Dr William J and Americus McGehee had 12 children, one of whom , Louise [Louisa] married William Hunter Johnson apparantly in Black Hawk Mississippi, though this has not been verified. Another, Elizabeth is reported as having married a Mr Lundy but no detail is offered as to where it is they lived . Much effort is currently focused on the identification of a James and Elizabeth McGehee Lundy of Black Hawk Mississippi, the probable parents of Sally LUNDY. This research also encompasses a known sister to Mrs Elizabeth McGehee Lundy named Louise or Louisa McGehee and who may be found resident as well in that place as Mrs William Hunter Johnson.
Naming patterns, the known occupation of Jabe's father as a physician as reported by his daughter Ethel to Jabe's grandaughter Doris [nee Diggs] Osborne, the 1850 census of Dr W J McGehee and wife with a son Jabez among others, the proximity by census of the two generations McGehee in Macon [now Lee County] Alabama , and the known residence for some time of my grandfather in the Black Hawk,, Missippi home of his mother's cousin Sally LUNDY, cements the identification of Dr William Jefferson and Americus Booker McGehee as parents to Jabus Everett McGehee, although no baptismal or birth records, or any evidence beyond the census record in which the age of Jabe is off by a touch, can be found to provide primary evidence of this relationship.
Generation American McGehee:
Generation American McGehee:
Generation American McGehee:
Generation American McGehee:
Generation American McGehee:
and his probable Father of Virginia [William MackGahye]
aaaa Our earliest documentable McGehee appears in the form of Thomas MackGehee of Virginia, born date unknown but ca 1645-1658, and dying on or after July 27 1727 when he wrote his will in St. Johnís Parish, King William county near Williamsburg , Virginia, founded as the capital of Virginia in 1699. The will shows him a prosperous landowner / plantar. It appears documentation of his precense in Virginia spans back to earliest 1689 : "Thomas owned land in several Virginia counties according to Dorothy Helmer. She said that, "Thomas MackGehee owned land in New Kent Co, as early as 1689, when it is recorded in St. Peter's Vestry, p. 20, that he 'marked the bounds of his land'." Several years later, on 28 October 1702, Thomas petitioned for 256 acres in Pamunkey Neck on the west side of Nicatywance Swamp, in King William Co. This patent was granted for transporting six persons into the Colony. However, this land grant was not confirmed until 10 November 1713, according to English Duplicates of lost Virginia Records. Less than a year after his above petition, Thomas bought 110 acres from Wiliam Glover, recorded 20 September 1703, King William County. This land was farther up the Nicatywance Swamp, which is now called Harrison Creek. According to Helmer, these acres had been granted to James Johnson on 1 April 1702, then sold to William Glover. Glover, in turn sold them to Thomas MackGehee. The Quit Rent Rolls of 1704 for King William County list "Thomas MackGehee 250 acres." " The McGehee Family A Resource page for all McGehee Descendants
aaaa Thomas MacGehee .is said to have married Ann Baytrop of England, and the marriage is said to have occured in Virginia. Through the good fortune of his will's preservation, children living at the time of its writing are known to us today, including his son Samuel who continues our line. Thomas MackGehee's ascendancy is presumptive and full of speculation, but much of this speculation involves tantalizing fact, including an understanding, if not proof, of why our Thomas MackGehee [ and his now presumed father William MackGahye in the more current research] is often presented as born James MacGregor, son of Patrick , a man who subsequently changed his name and who previous researchers would have arising to Robert II Scotland. To clarify the above: Thomas MackGehee was felt born James MacGregor , changed his name and came to America. Now it is thought that it may be William MackGahye, Thomas's presumed father present in Virginia before him, who was born James MacGregor, changed his name and came to America.
aaaa Thomas MackGehee of the will above was not the first McGehee in America, that honor belongs to William MackGahye who on April 14 1653 was listed as a headright on a grant comprised of 1000 acres given to William Hoccaday. Through such practise, Hoccady as grantee received a portion of land from the crown in return for bringing a person to the colony... .he also received the person's indenture for a period of years. Hoccaday had several other headrights, allowing for the considerable size of his land grant. William of the headright then reappears in the records in November 17 1658 in York County Court, Virginia where he is found as William MaGahee, a witness in a case concerning a canoe. In testimony at this time he gives his age as 40 years. .
aaaa While there is no known will for William MackGahye of the Headright and canoe case, it is presumed by many McGehee researchers that William was father to two Virginia McGehees, our Thomas MackGehee of St John's Parish, King William County Va above mentioned and with the will of 1727 , and his presumed brother named William , a Quaker in faith. In studying these first known McGehees in America, William of the Headright, Thomas with the will , and William the Quaker, it is impossible not to find reference to the name MacGregor, and allusion that the name McGehee was changed from MacGregor in the generation involving American immigration. The time frame of William of the Headright and canoe case corresponds with the longstanding suppresion and outlaw of the McGregor name in the homeland, the recent involvement of Clan MacGregor fighting alongside Montrose in an effort doomed to failure, and the known emmigration of a James MacGregor , son of a Gregor branch Chief, to Virginia, no record of whom can be found in that state.
aaaa The McGehees are a large family here in America, and several different lines of the family have distinguished and useful precense in various websites. While the surname is the subject of its own recent historical tome " McGehee Descendants" by Jane Grider , McGehee history is also present in numerous other published geneological works involving its many allied surnames predating Grider's work. and involving many different researchers of earlier timeframes.
aaaa Older McGehee research appearing in many allied study tomes often present in addendum to the American McGehees outlined our Thomas MackGehee as James MacGregor, forced by political circumstance to the change of his name, the son of Patrick MacGregor and his wife Marion MacDonnall and when so presented, Patrick MacGregor is called Chief Clan Gregor, "who led his clansman under Montrose in 1645" , and his wife is presented named in full as Marion MacDonald, daughter of the second baronet , and so a direct female descendant of Robert II of Scotland. This is NOT the case, contains several errors, and is presented here only to underscore the fact that this considerably legnthy ascendancy is inaccurate and to advise caution to gaurd against it effects, as its repetition persists in some studies of the name. The known James MacGregor who is known to have emmigrated to Virginia, was indeed the son of Patrick MacGregor, just not the one mentioned. His mother WAS Marion MacDonnall [MacDonald] , but she is of a different MacDonnal branch and not of of the baronetcy. His father IS said to have fought under Montrose at Kilsyth in 1645 , and he was indeed a Chief, just not Chief Clan Gregor, but of a branch known as sons of the mist, or in Gaellic MacEagh, a branch subordinate to another Chief Patrick MacGregor, Gregor Clan Chief, who led his clansmen alongside Montrose.
is now felt , but unable to be proved, that our Thomas MackGehee is the
son of William of the Headright above mentioned. If a father /son
relationship to Patrick MacGregor exists it would be through William of
the Headright and that generational level, which better fits with the timeframe
for nvolvement with Montrose which, as it turns out, involved two different
Chiefs Patrick MacGregor.
The MacGregor Connection to our earliest American
McGehees, while not able to be proved, involves three facts:
In the early portion of 17th century Scotland history a substantial royal antipathy toward Clan Gregor is evidenced from 1603 when the name is first proscribed and its owners prohibited from bearing arms to year 1633 when the clergy is forbidden to christianize any child of the name. It is not until 1661 when the 1603 proscription , enlarged in 1621 to the then current generation and in 1627 to that generation's progeny, was finally lifted , but it was later reimposed, and was last lifted, finally , in the mid 18th century. Kevin McGehee in his McGehee Timeline informs that in 1603 "Responding to the Kingís order to 'extirpate Clan Gregor and to ruit oot their posteritie and name,' the Privy Council proscribes the names Gregor and MacGregor and prohibits any MacGregor from carrying arms." , while in 1621 "The 1603 Proscription is extended to the new generation of MacGregors." and in 1627 " the Proscription of 1603 is further applied to the children of the generation proscribed in 1621" . Then 6 years later, and in 1633 "Members of the clergy are forbidden to christen any child with the name Gregor; also, ìLetters of Fire and Sword,î authorizing more reprisals, are issued in response to new MacGregor uprisings" while at last in 1661 "King Charles II lifts the 1603 Act of Proscription against Clan Gregor." But this reprieve was short lived, the proscription resurrected, and it was not until the later part of the 18th century when the proscription in was lifted finally. The tartan bordering this page is that of Clan Gregor.
Clan Gregor is often found described as fierce
and feared , harriers of the countryside for miles about, driving hereds
of stolen cattle and planning and and executing daring raids. Their history
involves the times of great upheaval in Scottish history, alliance to Scot
cause during periods of English claim and then subjugation, for which their
fierce bravery was well suited.
The known son of Patrick MacGregor, named James
MacGregor, who emmigrated to Virginia, does not appear in records there.
All comment of him post Scotland is lost.
If we accept that our William MacGahye of the
headright and canoe is our direct forebear who produced our known and secure
forbear Thomas MacGehee, and if we accept that he was born James
MacGregor and was forced by political circumstance to change his name on
immigration, we have a remarkable documentable history in Scotland through
the very mists of its history, and share that ascendancy with the current
Chief of the Clan. This research is under way.
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