If David Dinsmore did return to his wife Margaret and their five children after he sold his Nova Scotia land grant in January 1787, then it seems strange that Margaret is listed as head of her household in Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, on the 1790 federal census. A 19 November 1799 deed of Jane McClurkin to Paul Castelberry, both of Spartanburg County, also says that the land bordered on the east on Margaret Dunmore’s land, indicating that by 1799, Margaret was regarded as the owner of the land her husband had acquired in South Carolina (Spartanburg DB G, pp. 159-161).
In addition, when Margaret moved in 1800 with her son John and daughter Mary Jane and Mary Jane’s husband Mark Lindsey to Wayne Co., Kentucky, she and John jointly sold 82 acres of David’s land in Spartanburg County, indicating that they were its current owners. They deeded the land to Nathaniel Woodruff on 28 August 1800 with the deed noting that the land was part of a tract of 250 acres that David Dinsmore had bought from John Kissler in 1774 (Spartanburg DB L, pp. 95-6).
The preceding deed and the fact that Margaret is listed as head of the household in 1790 suggest that if David Dinsmore did leave Nova Scotia after selling his Loyalist land grant in January 1787, he did not return to his wife Margaret and their children in South Carolina. It is possible, of course, that David left Nova Scotia and went someplace else than to his family. He might, for instance, have returned to Ireland or to another location in Canada. Alternatively, it’s possible he died in Nova Scotia soon after buying more land there in 1787. Or that he moved to some location in the new United States other than South Carolina . . . .
There is one tantalizing reference to a David Dinsmore in the records of Buncombe Co., North Carolina, in 1790. On 25 Sept. 1790, when a number of residents of the area ed for the formation of Buncombe County, an Adam, James, William, and David Dunsmoor all signed the petition consecutively. This is an interesting document, since Adam Dinsmore spent the end of his life in what became Morgan Co., Alabama, the county next door to Lawrence County, where David’s children John and Mary Jane moved in the first part of the 1800s. In fact, because of the proximity of these two families and the fact that Adam had a son named David, the progeny of Adam and David (with wife Margaret) have been confused by a number of family historians.
Adam Dinsmore appears to have been born before 1745 and possibly as early as 1740, since he had a son James whose date of birth can definitely be placed in 1760. He’s thought to have been an Ulster Scots immigrant, but there is some uncertainty about when and where he arrived in the colonies. A man believed to be this Adam signed an oath of fidelity in Frederick Co., Maryland, in 1778. By 1790, Adam was definitely in Burke (later Buncombe) Co., North Carolina, and appears to have remained in Buncombe County up into the early 1800s, when he and his son James moved to Madison Co., Mississippi Territory. James then raised his family in Morgan Co., Alabama, and died there in 1837.
If David Dinsmore left Nova Scotia to join the family of Adam Dinsmore in North Carolina, then I can find no further reference to him in the records of Buncombe County after the 1790 petition for the county’s formation. The David Dunsmoor signing that petition is thought not to have been the son of Adam Dinsmore of this name, since that David was not yet of age in 1790.
The David Dinsmore of Ninety Six and then Nova Scotia does continue to be mentioned in land transactions in Spartanburg County after Margaret and their children had all moved to Kentucky, but never with any clear indication that he had returned to the county to live on his land—though a 7 October 1807 deed of Longshore Lamb to Christopher Bell for 250 acres on a branch of the Tyger says that the land was bordered on the west by David Dunsmore and Jacob Earnest (Spartanburg DB N, pp. 284-5). And a 19 August 1809 deed from Christopher Bell to Richard Chesney of the same tract after Lamb sold it to Bell also mentions David Dunsmore’s and Jacob Earnest’s land bordering it on the west (Spartanburg DB N, pp. 280-1).
A 14 February 1808 deed of Isaac Crow to Joseph Wofford for 100 acres south of the Tyger also notes that the land was in part from a grant to David “Donamore” (Spartanburg DB Q, pp. 114-5). And a 16 February 1809 deed of William Pearson to William Shackelford for 99 acres on Jamey’s Creek of the Tyger notes that the land was out of the 250-acre tract “formerly owned by David Densmore” (Spartanburg DB M, pp. 185-6). Jonathan Moore and William L. Allen witnessed this deed, with Allen proving it on 5 February 1810. William Lindsey Allen was the husband of Mary, who had previously been married to Dennis Lindsey (d. by January 1796), whose son Mark married Mary Jane Dinsmore, a daughter of David and Margaret Dinsmore. A tradition has passed down in some branches of the Lindsey and Allen families that Mary was the daughter of Spencer Calvert and Nancy Jane Leatherwood; I have yet to find proof of this claim.
But if David Dinsmore did return to Spartanburg County at some point, then he left no estate record there, and is not on the federal census in that county in 1790, 1800, or at any point thereafter.
When Margaret went to Wayne Co., Kentucky, with her son John, daughter Mary Jane, and son-in-law Mark Lindsey in 1800, she also appears to have headed her own household. In September 1801, the Wayne County court order book states, “At the motion of Margaret Dinsmore, satisfactory proof being made to the court, the court is of opinion she is entitled to 100 acres of land.” It seems likely Margaret was patenting the 100 acres under the Headright Claims act of 21 December 1795, though technically that act restricted patents to men over 21 years of age with families. Margaret’s son John Dinsmore seems to have patented 200 acres in Wayne County in July of the same year.
Margaret Dinsmore appears on the tax list in Wayne County up through 1806 and then disappears from this record, which suggests to me that she died in 1806 or 1807 in Wayne County. On 21 April 1806 she is taxed on Otter Creek next to her son John, and the following year, John is taxed for her 100 acres, with the tax books noting that this was land that Margaret Dinsmore had entered. In the same year, John also begins to be taxed for 8 slaves, only one of whom consistently remains on the tax list in his household thereafter.
As noted previously, David Dinsmore’s Loyalist land claim in Nova Scotia states that he and his wife had five children. The claim states that Margaret and the five children were living on his 250 acres in Ninety Six (later Spartanburg County) in 1786. The 1790 census shows Margaret Dinsmore’s household in Spartanburg County with a white male over 16 years of age and five females.
The male in Margaret’s household in 1790 is almost certainly John Dinsmore, who, as we’ve seen, sold part of David’s 250 acres along with Margaret when the family left South Carolina for Kentucky in 1800, and who appears to have inherited Margaret’s land in Wayne Co., Kentucky. John’s obituary in the Moulton Democrat, 24 Dec. 1858, states, “Died at the residence of his son, David Lewis Dinsmore, Esq., on Thursday the 16th of December 1858, Mr. John Dinsmore, an old and respected citizen—aged 84 years 3 months and 1 day.” The biography of John’s grandson William Lewis Dinsmore discussed previously states that John came to Alabama from Wayne Co., Kentucky.
John seems to have married about 1797 in Spartanburg County to a wife whose given name was Phebe, a detail we know because she signed the 26 February 1821 deed in which John and Phebe sold their 200 acres in Wayne Co., Kentucky, as they prepared to move to Lawrence Co., Alabama (Wayne DB C, pp. 228-9). John and Phebe (who may have been a Woodruff, according to several descendants of this family) had the following three children (and perhaps others whose names haven’t been found): Samuel, who was born abt. 1798 in Spartanburg County and died 1850-1860 in Chariton Co., Missouri (married Rebecca, daughter of George and Elizabeth Brent Wolfscales, 28 March 1816, Wayne Co., Kentucky); David Lewis, born 1803, Wayne Co., Kentucky, died 11 December 1888, Lawrence Co., Alabama (married Eleanor, daughter of William Kyle, 19 March 1833, Lawrence Co., Alabama); and Margaret, born 1790-1794, Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, died 1840-1850, Hardin Co., Tennessee (married James Hail/Hale, 16 February 1819, Wayne Co., Kentucky).
Another of David and Margaret Dinsmore’s children was a daughter Mary Jane, whose tombstone in the old Lindsey family cemetery in Lawrence Co., Alabama, states that she was 74 years old at the time of her death. The stone gives Mary Jane’s date of death as 10 March 1855, but Mary Jane’s estate records in Lawrence County suggest she actually died in March 1853—and this appears to place her year of birth in 1779 in Ninety Six District (later Spartanburg County), South Carolina. The 1850 federal census corroborates this conclusion, since it gives her age as 71 and place of birth as South Carolina.
Mary Jane married Mark, son of Dennis Lindsey, abt. 1793 in Spartanburg County, and moved with him, her mother Margaret, and her brother John and John’s family to Wayne Co., Kentucky, in 1800. As did John and his wife Phebe, Mark and Mary Jane moved to Lawrence Co., Alabama, in 1819.
Mark and Mary Jane Dinsmore Lindsey had the following children: Dennis, born 28 December 1794 in Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, died 28 August 1836, Lawrence Co., Alabama (married Jane, daughter of Thomas and Sarah Whitlock Brooks, 18 February 1813, Wayne Co., Kentucky); Nancy, born abt. 1801, Wayne Co., Kentucky, died after 1879, Hickman Co., Kentucky or Obion Co., Tennessee (married William Morris abt. 1825, Morgan Co., Alabama); William Burke, born abt. 1812, Wayne Co., Kentucky, died after 1860, probably in Bastrop Co., Texas (married Carolina S., daughter of Jared and Anne Collins Puckett, abt. 1834, Lawrence Co., Alabama); Fielding Wesley, born 11 December 1813, Wayne Co., Kentucky, died 12 March 1868, Lawrence Co., Alabama (married Clarissa, daughter of James and Nancy Isbell Brooks, 24 June 1835, Lawrence Co., Alabama); and David Dinsmore, born 3 November 1815, Wayne Co., Kentucky, died 18 March 1873, Lawrence Co., Alabama (married Sarah, a sister of Jane Brooks, above, 1 March 1838, Lawrence Co., Alabama).
The other three children of David and Margaret Dinsmore are less easy to identify. A James Dinsmore born between 1770-1780 shows up on the 1840 census in Morgan Co., Alabama. His date of birth indicates that this is not the James who is son of Adam Dinsmore of Morgan County, who was (as noted previously) born in 1760, per his family bible. As noted previously, that James died in 1837 in Morgan County. I find no trace of the James born 1770-1780 after 1840 in Morgan County records. It’s possible he’s one of the three children of David and Margaret Dinsmore whose identity is not clearly established—except that the 1790 census appears to show David and Margaret with only one son and four daughters, a point that will be discussed in more detail in a moment.
In all likelihood, another of the children of David and Margaret Dinsmore is a Mary Dinsmore who married Samuel Woodruff in Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, around 1788. The date of Mary’s marriage (which is calculated from the birthdates of her children) suggests that she was likely the first-born of David and Margaret’s children, and was likely born abt. 1770.
Samuel and Mary went to Hopkins Co., Kentucky, after 1810 and had children David, born 1789, Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, died May-October 1841, Hopkins Co., Kentucky (married Elizabeth Puryear Jones, 6 August 1814, Hopkins Co., Kentucky); Mary K. Woodruff, born 18 December 1792, Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, died 2 November 1852, Hopkins Co., Kentucky (married Joseph Woodruff abt. 1818, probably in Hopkins Co., Kentucky); John Willis, born 4 August 1793, Spartanburg Co., South Carolina , died 15 Sept. 1864, Hopkins Co., Kentucky (married Frances Elvira, daughter of Harrison and Martha Crockett Davis, 22 January 1818, Hopkins Co., Kentucky); Jane Virginia Woodruff, born 1800, Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, died 15 September 1864, Hopkins Co., Kentucky (married John Keyser, 20 July 1817, Hopkins Co., Kentucky); Hiram, born 12 January 1805, Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, died 29 January 1865, Caldwell Co., Kentucky (married Lydia Eliza Fox, 16 Jul 1829, Hopkins Co., Kentucky); and William.
Finally, there are a number of compelling reasons to think that David and Margaret Dinsmore had a daughter whose given name is not known and who married James, son of John and Mary Woodruff of Spartanburg Co., South Carolina. John, James Woodruff’s father, was a brother of the Nathaniel Woodruff who married Mary Dinsmore. James died before June 1830 in Lawrence Co., Alabama. At the time of his death, James appears to have left a widow Naomi who is listed as the head of the household on the 1830 federal census and again in 1850.
In my view, James had previously been married to a Dinsmore daughter whose name has not been discovered; she appears to have predeceased her husband. I should acknowledge that some descendants and researchers of this line think that the Naomi who headed the family’s household in 1830 and 1850 is David and Margaret Dinsmore’s daughter.
My reasons for thinking it is likely that Naomi was a second wife and stepmother of James’s children are twofold. In the first place, if her date of birth as indicated by the 1850 federal census is correct, she would have been born in 1790. David Dinsmore had, of course, left South Carolina in 1782, and to all appearances, did not return to his family after that date. David’s 1786 Loyalist application in Nova Scotia explicitly states that his wife and five children were living on the family’s land in South Carolina.
This 1786 land application in Canada indicates that the couple had had five children born prior to 1786. The 1790 census shows Margaret as head of her household in South Carolina with a male aged 16+ in the household (I take this to be her son John, born in 1774), and with five females, of whom one would be Margaret. It seems very likely to me that one of the four daughters would become the wife of James Woodruff, and that she was born in advance of 1790—and almost certainly by 1782 or, at latest, 1783.
My second reason for thinking that Naomi, James Woodruff’s widow, is not likely the mother of her children has to do with a guardianship petition filed in Lawrence Co., Alabama, in 1830. On 23 June 1830, John Dinsmore and Mark Lindsey applied for guardianship of two of James’s minor children, John and Thomas Woodruff. The most plausible explanation of this action is that John Dinsmore and Mark Lindsey were applying for the guardianship of two of their nephews after the parents of these nephews had died. In 1850, in fact, the federal census shows John living with Thomas Woodruff and his wife Sarah.
In my view, the uncles of these Woodruff boys would more likely have taken the step of applying for legal guardianship of their nephews if the mother of the children was a step-mother rather than their natural mother. The guardianship application states that the mother of the boys was not “calculated” to raise them and had hired them out where they were mistreated by their employers.
If Naomi was John’s sister and Mark’s sister-in-law, I think it would have been far more likely that John and Mark would have handled these matters within the family and without involving the court—though I could certainly be wrong in this deduction, and perhaps researchers who have concluded that Naomi is David and Margaret’s daughter are correct.
It appears that James Woodruff and his Dinsmore wife—whatever her identity—had the following children: Margaret, born abt. 1811, Wayne Co., Kentucky (married Willis Ireland, 21 April 1836, Lawrence Co., Alabama); Thomas, born 1814-9, Wayne Co., Kentucky, died 1861, Lawrence Co., Alabama (married 1] Sarah, daughter of John and Esther Livingston Callahan, abt. 1849, Lawrence Co., Alabama, and 2] Isalena, her sister, 01 September 1852, Lawrence Co., Alabama); and Nancy, born abt. 1824-1826 in Alabama.
And with these details ends the story that began with the immigration of a young couple—to all appearances, a just-married couple with no children—from Ulster to South Carolina in 1767. A couple that was, in the course of time, to have five children, as the young immigrant couple worked to begin a new life in their new homeplace—to set up a farm and begin rearing a family . . . .
And then a war arrived, an event that must have perplexed this immigrant family newly arrived in the American colonies. As did many others in the area in which David and Margaret Dinsmore had settled, David chose not to support the revolution. He paid a high price for his choice, and his ties to his family were, it seems, permanently sundered by his exile to Canada.
His wife and children moved to Kentucky, where Margaret died in 1806 or 1807, it appears. Within a generation, a Scotch-Irish family that had settled in South Carolina in 1767 had branched out to Kentucky and Alabama. It would be interesting to know what memory these descendants retained of the Loyalist service of their progenitor in North America, and if his exile to Nova Scotia and separation from his wife and children were remembered in the generations that followed David and Margaret. Several of his children seem to have cherished their father’s memory, since they perpetuated his name when they named their own children.
And this, of course, serves as a poignant reminder of the tragedy of what happened to this family when an unexpected war came along and broke the unity of the newly established immigrant Dinsmore family . . . .
This is the sixth posting in a seven-part series about this topic. The previous posting in this series is here, and the next posting in the series is here. That posting will end with a link taking you to the next in the series, if you’re interested in following this series to the end.
 The petition and list of signatories are transcribed on the website of the Old Buncombe County Genealogical Society; accessed March 2018.
 Adam died in 1815 in Madison Co., Mississippi Territory, from which Morgan and other counties were cut when Alabama became a state. See Madison Co. WB A, pp. 163-164.
 On the descendants of Adam Dinsmore, see J.T. Morrow, Morrow Family History (priv. publ., 1961); John Knox, History of Morgan County, Alabama (Decatur: Decatur Printing Co., 1967), p. 134; and Lina Vandegrift Denison Cherry ms. collection at Arkansas History Commission (box 22, file 223). Morrow (pp. 223-4) erroneously places David Lewis Dinsmore, son of David and Margaret’s son John Dinsmore, as one of Adam Dinsmore’s sons. Yet the biography of William Lewis Dinsmore, son of David Lewis Dinsmore (see above, n. 22) explicitly states that his father David was son of John Dinsmore of Lawrence Co., Alabama.
 The Lina Vandegrift Cherry ms. collection cited in n. 83 has a 7 October 1926 letter to Lina Cherry from James J. Dinsmore of Falkville, Alabama, a grandson of James, which has a transcript of James Dinsmore’s family bible. This states that he was born in Co. Antrim, Ireland, in 1760. James J. Dinsmore’s letter states that a family tradition shows these Dinsmores coming to America in 1776. The Revolutionary War pension application file of James and wife Jean McDonald (W7058) gives his date and place of death as 3 September 1837, though his tombstone in Falkville cemetery says he died 22 September 1837. See Morgan County loose estate files #717 for his estate file.
 Wayne Co., Kentucky, Court Order Bk. A, 1802-22, p. 19.
 See the introduction to Willard Rouse Jillson, The Kentucky Land Grants (Louisville: Standard, 1925).
 The county Court Order Book for 14 July 1801 shows him claiming 150 acres on that date (Wayne Co., Kentucky, Court Order Bk. A, p. 17). In November, he relinquished this claim, with no reason for the relinquishment recorded, though this court record specifies that the land he had claimed was given by certificate #244 (ibid., p. 29). By 1801, John Dinsmore begins to appear in Wayne County tax books. In 1801, he is taxed (1801 Tax Bk., p. 2) on 24 Dec. for 2 horses. By 1802, he shows up as a landowner (p. 7, 13 Aug.), with 200 acres on Otter Creek and 1 horse. He continues to appear in the tax records from this date until 1820, always with the same 200 acres on Otter Creek (1803, p. 7, 9 Aug.; 1804, p. 11, 1 Aug.; 1806, p. 10, 21 Apr.; 1807, p. 9, 22 May; 1808, p. 7, 10 Aug.; 1809, p. 9; 1810, p. 9, 2 June; 1812, p. 25; 1814, p. 4; 1815, p. 15; 1816, p. 3; 1817, p. 23; 1820, p.–). Jillson, Kentucky Land Grants also lists John Dinsmore as a grantee, noting that he received a grant for 200 acres on Otter Creek in Wayne County on 24 July 1807, and citing Kentucky Grants South of Green River, Bk. 12, p. 109. It appears that Jillson has misread 1801 as 1807, since John Dinsmore first appears on the Wayne County tax records with 200 acres in 1802, and never owns other land in the county, with the exception of the 100 acres of his mother Margaret that fall to him when she apparently died in 1806.
 See Myra Thrasher Borden, abs., Footprints in Time: Abstracts from Lawrence County, Alabama, Newspapers 1855-90 (priv. publ., Mt. Hope, Alabama, 1992), vol. 1p. 34; and Foide J. Williams, abs., “The Moulton Democrat 1858,” Old Lawrence Reminiscences 6 (1992), p. 118.
 As I noted in a previous installment in this series of postings about the life of David Dinsmore, his grandson William Lewis Dinsmore (1851-1939) provided notes for a biography of himself in 1921. The biography is in Dictionary of Alabama Biography, ed. Thomas B. Owen (Chicago: S. J. Clarke, 1921), vol. 3, p. 498. In the handwritten notes that William L. Dinsmore compiled for the biography, which are now held in a Dinsmore surname file at the Alabama archives, he states that his great-grandfather came to the U.S. from Scotland. Since William’s mother Eleanor Kyle Dinsmore also had Scottish ancestry, it’s somewhat unclear whether this statement refers to William’s Dinsmore or Kyle great-grandfather. But since the biography focuses primarily on his Dinsmore ancestry, this statement appears to refer to David Dinsmore, from whom William L. descends through his father David Lewis Dinsmore (1803-1888) and his grandfather John Dinsmore (1774-1858). And given the Scottish roots of this family before John Dinsmore came to Ireland, it’s easy to see how a tradition of Scottish origins for David Dinsmore might have passed down among some of his descendants.
 On John Dinsmore in Wayne County court and tax records, see supra, n.7. John was named a constable in Wayne County on 17 March 1810, (Wayne Court Order Bk. A, p. 162). On 12 Oct. 1812, he is in the muster list of Capt. George Stockton’s company of the 3rd Ky. Regiment Mounted Rifles in the War of 1812 along with a John Lindsey who appears to be a brother of John’s brother-in-law Mark Lindsey (see Kentucky Legislature, Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Kentucky, Soldiers of the War of 1812 [Frankfort: Adjutant General, 1891], p. 16). On 25 March 1816, he gave permission for his son Samuel to Marry Rebecca Wolfscales in Wayne County on 28 March. On 26 Feb. 1819, he gave surety for the marriage of James Hale and Peggy Dinsmore in Wayne Co. On the 1850 census, John Dinsmore appears in the household of Thomas and Sarah Woodruff in Lawrence Co., Alabama (p. 406; fam. 588/dwel. 588, 8th Distr.; 28th November). John’s son David Lewis Dinsmore and his family are living next door (fam. 587).
 I have visited the cemetery and photographed the tombstone. The photo included here as figure 6 is by Ray and Marty and is at the Find a Grave site for Lindsey cemetery online. Note that the cross bar on the numeral 4 in Mary Jane’s age at death (74) on the tombstone is faint and difficult to see in the photo, but clearly apparent on the stone itself.
 Mary Jane is in the household of son David Dinsmore Lindsey on the 1850 federal census in Lawrence Co., Alabama dist. 8 (p. 381; fam./dwel 242, 8th distr.; 5 November). Knox, History of Morgan County, p. 126, mistakenly places Mary Jane’s birth in Ireland.
 Mark and Mary Jane sold their land on Beaver Creek in Wayne County on 13 Oct. 1819 (Wayne DB C, pp. 118-9). In his Early Settlers of Alabama (New Orleans, 1899), pp. 122-3, James Edmond Saunders says that Mark Lindsey came to Lawrence Co., Alabama, from Kentucky in 1827 with his son Dennis. But Mark and Dennis are on the 1820 state census for Alabama in Lawrence County, and on 31 July 1821, Mark witnessed the will of Robert Price in Lawrence County (WB 1, p. 7). Dennis patented land in Lawrence County on 4 November 1818, in section 8, twp. 7, range 6 west at the Huntsville land office (ledger 127).
 1840 federal census, Morgan Co., Alabama, p. 32. The household has 0-0-0-0-1 m and 2-0-0-1-0-0-0 f and 1 slave.
 Though some sources state that the given name of the Woodruff who married Mary, daughter of David and Margaret Dinsmore, was Nathaniel or Samuel Nathaniel, it’s clear to me from various records that the husband of Mary Dinsmore was called Samuel Woodruff. From the time he begins to appear in Hopkins Co., Kentucky, records, his name is consistently Samuel, and he is clearly one of several Samuel Woodruffs appearing in Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, records prior to this time.
 On 10 July 1792, Nathaniel bought from James Wofford 400 acres on Jamey’s Creek, bordered east by John Keighler and all other sides by vacant lands, it being the west part of the tract (Spartanburg DB G, pp. 42-3). As noted previously, on 28 August 1800, when Margaret Dinsmore and her son John sold 82 acres of David Dinsmore’s 250-acre tract from John Keighler in Spartanburg Co., South Carolina, as they prepared to go to Kentucky, they sold the land to Nathaniel Woodruff.
 Lawrence County Orphans Court Minutes Bk. C, p. 14.