Descendants of Lewis ap David of Cardiganshire, Wales

Generation #4

Note: Information on the Lewis Family before Walden Lewis b. c. 1774 in Virginia comes from assumptions based on multiple sources. Therefore, the information on this page is not reliable for genealogical purposes. A detailed discussion of the many connections can be found at Lewis Family Research.

William (3James, 2James, 1James) Lewis of Fredericksburg VA

There are five notable Lewis families in Spotsylvania Co VA in the 18th Century. And, this Lewis family is perhaps the least known:

    1. Col. Fielding Lewis of Kenmore descended from Councilor John Lewis of Warner Hall, Maj. John Lewis of Chemokins, and John "the Immigrant" Lewis of Monmouthshire, Wales. This family was perhaps the wealthiest and most influential family in Virginia. Among the families they intermarried with were the Warners, Meriwethers, Fieldings, Taliaferros, and Washingtons.

Widowed in 1733, Willis quickly laid siege to Mildred Washington Gregory, herself twice widowed and the only sister of Augustine Washington .

Henry Willis' vision also attracted another major player well before the town showed potential. John Lewis of Warner Hall was a neighbor of the Willis family in Gloucester County and a first cousin of Augustine and Mildred Washington.

Lewis, too, was an entrepreneur, already in the shipping business. Through inheritance, he owned and worked 3,000 acres on the Ni River, where he could have seated his young son Fielding. Instead, he opted for a stake in Fredericksburg’s future, purchasing 400 acres in 1742 next to the upper end of town. Although the transaction was completed after Henry Willis’ death, it certainly had to have been the result of consultations with “the top man of the place” and with Lewis’ Fredericksburg cousins. He immediately established a mercantile operation at the town line and hired his cousin, Mildred’s son-in-law, John Thornton, as his store manager.

    Paula S. Felder, "Fredericksburg's Origins and a History of Its Neighborhoods," HistoryPoint.Org, 10 October 2004 <> 10 October 2004.

    2. "Irish" John Lewis immigrated from County Donegal, Ireland, in about 1726. The family had many business and legal dealings in Fredericksburg throughout the period in question. Son Thomas became a noted surveyor and was one of the party which surveyed the boundary between Virginia and North Carolina, and son Andrew was a Brigadier General in the Revolution. Among the families they intermarried with were the Lewises of Belvoir Plantation, the Strothers, Savages, and Thorntons.

    3. Zachary Lewis II was the son of Zachary Lewis who immigrated from Brecknockshire, Wales, to King and Queen Co VA in 1692. Zachary II settled in Fredericksburg VA. Zachary was the progenitor of the majority of Lewises in Spotsylvania, Louisa, and Orange counties. Among the families they married into were the Walkers, Wallers, Lewises of Belvoir, and Terrells.

    Note: Ambrose and Charles Lewis were free persons of color who served with distinction in the Revolution. Research indicates that they were brothers and most probably descendants of the Zachary Lewis Family.

    4. Henry Lewis b. 1699 Middlesex Co VA is a separate Lewis family. Henry's family lived in Spotsylvania and Culpeper Co VA and is well documented.

    5. William Lewis of Spotsylvania Co VA descends from the Lewis family of Abernant Bychan, Wales. Among the families they intermarried with were the Branhams, Colsons, Richards, and Herndons. [Herndon Family Page].

William Lewis of Fredericksburg VA was born 1723, probably in Essex Co VA. William married Sarah Branham b. c. 1724 Richmond Co VA in about 1745. Evidence for their marriage comes from Sarah's will which was witnessed by her brother, Daniel Branham, and her brother-in-law, Benjamin Burbridge.

William and Sarah migrated to Spotsylvania Co VA in about 1746. William lived probably east of Fredericksburg toward the Caroline County boundary and leased lots 14 & 15 in town. (Note in the annotated map of Fredericksburg which is believed to have been completed c. 1740, Lot 14 belonged to J. Branham and Lot 15 belonged to R. Spotswood.) And, William was reportedly issued a tavern license from 1749 to 1755. Did William run a tavern or inn on these two lots in Fredericksburg?

William left a will in 1763, naming his children and is buried at St. George's Episcopal Church, Fredericksburg VA. LC5D-DFX William

Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800, p. 58:
£50 William Lewis, admr. of John Lewis, decd, with Benjamin Davis, sec. Mch 6, 1749.
Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800, p. 194:
June 8, 1753. John Tayloe of Richmond Co., Esqr., to William Lewis of Spts. Co. Deed of Lease. Lots 14 and 15, in the town of Fredericksburg. £15 curr. yearly.
Witnesses, Anthony Strother, Ralph McFarlane, Ann Farley. July 4, 1753.
Spotsylvania County Minute Book, 1755-1765:
Thos. Burbridge appointed overseer of the road from Corbin's bridge to the Rapa. Road above Edw. Herndon's, his gang Viz. his own; Col. Corbin's qtr. where Fra. Cammock is overseer; Mathew Lewis; Wm. Lewis's planta.; Nichs. Hawkins; John Gordon; Widow Burbridge; Mr. John Smith's qtr; & Wm. Ellis's tithes. [MB p. 7]
Spotsylvania Co VA Bond Book B, p. 202:
Feby. 20, 1756. William Waller of Spts. Co. to William Lewis of Fredericksburg. Deed of Lease. House and lots in Fredksbg. £15 curr. yearly. Jos. Brock, Wm. Carr, Wm. Wood. Mar. 3, 1756.
Spotsylvania Co VA Bond Book B, p. 202:
John Tayloe of Richmond Co., Esqr., releases to William Lewis of Fredksbg, Lots 14 and 15 in Fredksbg. £15 curr. yearly. Dated, April 14, 1756. Fielding Lewis, Antho. Strother, Wm. Waller, Jos. Jones, Edwd. Pendleton. June 1,  1756.
WALLER, WILLIAM, Gentl. Spotsylvania Co., d. Oct. 22, 1756, p. May 6, 1760:
. . .son, John Waller, land in Spotsylvania, given to me by my deceased father's will, John Waller, Gentl., also land adjoining that of my brother Benjamin, and Zachary Lewis, also land which I bought of Ambrose Foster, and my lots of land adjoining the town of Fredericksburg, now in the possession of my tenant William Lewis.
Caroline Co VA Court Order Book, p. 234:
12 Nov. 1756: Case of John Mitchell Ag. William Carr, Gent. Ordered that John Mitchell pay William Lewis 289 lbs Tobo. for 4 days attendance and coming and going 3 times 21 miles. . .Sarah Lewis 201 lbs tobo. for 3 days attendance and coming and going 3 times 33 miles as an evidence or him against Carr.
£100. William LEWIS, guard. to Elizabeth LONG, orph. of Samuel LONG, with Thomas HAYDON, sec. Dec. 7, 1756.
Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800, p.60:
£300. James SPARKS, admr. of James SPARKS, decd., with William LEWIS and Bland BALLARD, sec. Aug. 2, 1758.
Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800, p. 217:
Nov. 3, 1760. Anthony Strother of King George Co. Gent., and Mary, his wife, to William Lewis of Fredksbg. £300 curr. Lots 35 & 36, in town of Fredksbg.
Witnesses, William Smith, William Brock, Edward. Herndon. Nov. 4, 1760.
Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800:
£3000. Susannah CARR, guard. to Charles Brooks CARR, Agnes Brooks CARR, Walter Chiles CARR, Phebe CARR, Thos. CARR, orphs. of Wm. CARR, gentl., with Anthony FOSTER, John HOLLODAY and Wm. LEWIS, sec. Nov. 6, 1760.
Spotsylvania County Will Book D (1761-1772) page 61:
LEWIS, William, Fredericksburg, d. Jan 17, 1763, p. July 4, 1763.
Ex. Wife, Sarah LEWIS; Charles YATES; Joseph BROCK; Edward HERNDON. Leg. son, James LEWIS, the lot which I purchased from Anthony STROTHER; sons, John, William, Benjamin and George; wife, Sarah LEWIS.
Wit. [GEN] Hugh MERCER, Wm. KNOX, William HARTWELL.
Spotsylvania Co VA Deed Book G:
April 18, 1771. James Lewis and Elizabeth, his wife, of Spotsylvania Co, and Sarah Lewis, being the widow of William Lewis (the latter being mother and father of James) to Jacob Whitley of Fredericksburg. Whereas Sarah Lewis is entitled to 1/3 part of two lots for life as a tenant in dower and the inheritance of sd 1/3 expectant on the death of sd Sarah by sd James as well as the other 2/3rds, James and Sarah have both agreed to sell lots 35, 36 in Fredericksburg, purchased by sd William Lewis, father of sd James, of Anthony Strother. Wit: Joseph Brock, Robert Chew, John Herndon,, Daniel Branham, and James Cunningham.
Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800, p. 27:
Lewis, Sarah,
Spotsylvania Co. d. Oct. 28, 1771.
Leg. daughter Elizabeth Richards; grandson James Lewis; granddaughter Sarah Richards, daughter Elizabeth Richards, grandchildren William and Sarah Richards, son and daughter of Winifred Richards.
Wit. Daniel Branham, Benjamin Burbridge.



Research Notes:

Son James and daughter Mary wed siblings. Daughters Elizabeth and Winifred wed siblings.

Dates of birth of children are set from names provided in Sarah Branham Lewis' will dated 10/28/1771:

    1. Capt William Lewis b. c. 1742 Fredericksburg VA

    2. Elizabeth Lewis (Note: DOB based on marriage date)

Crozier. Spotsylvania Co VA Records:
Dec. 13, 1770. Alexander Spotswood to Philemon Richards of Spots. co. Lease. 196a. in Spots. and Orange counties. 1000 lbs. tobacco.
Signed: Ben Richards, Ben Richards, Jr., and Benj. Chapman.
Wit: Js Lewis, Wm. Richards, Thos. Brooks.
Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800, p. 27:
Lewis, Sarah,
Spotsylvania Co. d. Oct. 28, 1771. Wit. Daniel Branham, Benjamin Burbridge. Leg. daughter Elizabeth Richards; grandson James Lewis; granddaughter Sarah Richards, daughter Elizabeth Richards, grandchildren William and Sarah Richards, son and daughter of Winifred Richards.
Crozier. Spotsylvania Co VA Records, p. 436:
1790. William and Elizabeth Richards of Culpeper Co. purchased 60a. in Spots. Co. from Joseph Jones.
Scotch Irish Settlement in Virginia, Vol. 1, p.400
Smyth Tandy, of Amherst County, vs. Lewis and Phileman Richards.
Contract of lease 27th February, 1790.

    3. James "of Laurel Hill" Lewis b. c. 1744 Spotsylvania Co VA

    4. Winifred Lewis

Spotsylvania County Records 1721-1800, p. 27:
Lewis, Sarah,
Spotsylvania Co. d. Oct. 28, 1771. Wit. Daniel Branham, Benjamin Burbridge. Leg. daughter Elizabeth Richards; grandson James Lewis; granddaughter Sarah Richards, daughter Elizabeth Richards, grandchildren William and Sarah Richards, son and daughter of Winifred Richards.

    5. Mary Lewis

Virginia Colonial Militia, p. 125:
John Herndon, Ensign of company under Capt. Miller, commission dated August 2, 1755.
Spotsylvania Co. Will Book E (1772-1798), p. 577:
HERNDON, John, St. George's parish, Spotsylvania Co., d. May 11, 1782, Executor's Bond dated Nov 20, 1783.
Wit. Thomas Allen, Joseph Fox, Robert Cunningham.
Ex. brothers, Edward and Joseph Herndon, my friend James Lewis, and my sons Joseph and John Herndon.
Leg. wife, Mary Herndon, entire estate until her death or re-marriage, then to be equally divided amongst all my children (not named).
Spotsylvania Co VA Deed Book L, p. 412:
10/10/1787. Wharton Schooler and Margaret, his wife, of Spots. Co. to Edward Herndon and James Lewis, Executors of Jno. Herndon, dec'd. £120 10 s. curr. 120 1/2 acres in Spots. Co. in trust for widow & orphans of sd Jno. Herndon, dec'd. as by articles in his will dated 5/11/1782, etc. etc.
Wit: Thomas Strahan, J. Brock, Jno. Brock, Jr., Daniel Branham, Margaret Shooler. 11/9/1787.
Herndon, Capt. John, dec'd., his land near Fredsbrg. to be sold (VHFA 12 May 91); his ex. Edward Herndon and James Lewis, will sell slaves, HH and KF bel. to his estate at Mrs. Mary Herndon's in Spotsylvania Co. (VHFA 27 Sep 92); his ex. will sell two tracks on Massaponax; Mrs. Herndon lives on one (VHFA 19 Sep 93); his ex. will sell his 277 sc. tract in Spotsylvania Co. (VHFA 9 Jan 94).

    6. John Lewis b. 1749 Fredericksburg VA

    7. Benjamin Lewis

Crozier: Spotsylvania Co VA Records
May 31, 1787. Thomas Strachan of Spots. Co. to Thomas Colson and Oliver Towles, executors of Wm. Daingerfield, dec'd., Matthew Maury and Thomas Walker, Jr. to indemnify them. . . .
Wit: Jas. Lewis, Benj. Lewis. Novr. 9, 1787.
Crozier: Spotsylvania Co VA Records:
29 Aug. 1791. A. Spotswood to John Shelton.
Wit: Benj. and James Lewis.

    8. Ann Lewis

    9. George Lewis

Generation #5


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