Children of Mary Brooks (d. 1787, Frederick County, Virginia) — Susanna Brooks Haynes and James Brooks

Copy of will of James Brooks filed in Peter Peters and Wife vs. Admrs. of James Brooks, Frederick County, Virginia, Chancery Court 1831-007

Or, Subtitled: Old and week in body but of sound and perfect mind and memory

In a long series of postings of which this is the final one, I’ve been following the children named in the 9 July 1786 will of Mary Brooks of Frederick County, Virginia (and see also here), and have tracked the descendants of those children for a generation or two.[1] As we’ve seen, Mary’s will names the following children:

Children of Elizabeth Brooks (1747/1750 – 1816) and Husband George Rice (abt. 1743 – 1792): Edmund Rice (1778/1779 – 1797) and George Rice (abt. 1780 – 1814)

Or, Subtitled, “I George Rice of the town of Winchester tavern keeper

Regarding George Rice and Elizabeth Brooks’s two sons Edmund and George, I have limited information. As we have seenEdmund died testate with a will dated 20 April 1796 in Frederick County, Virginia.[1] The will (a digital image is at the posting I just linked) was probated on 4 April 1797 in Frederick County, indicating that Edmund died between the 1796 date and the 1797 one, almost certainly in Frederick County.

Children of Elizabeth Brooks (1747/1750 – 1816) and Husband George Rice (abt. 1743 – 1792): Mary Rice (1776/1778 – abt. 1825) and Husband Joshua Wilson (1769 – 1823) (2)

John Clark Bayless, photo uploaded by John Blakemore Sellers to “Rev John Clark Bayless” Find a Grave memorial page, Bayless cemetery, Carter County, Kentucky, created by Marcella Mauk and maintained by Remembrance of Days Past

The previous posting ended its chronicle of Joshua Wilson and Mary Rice’s lives on 13 January 1812 as they relinquished to John Postlethwaite the inn they had leased from him in Lexington, Kentucky, and had managed for eight years. The posting states that at this point, the Wilsons moved from Lexington to Louisville, Kentucky. Robert C. Jobson thinks that they had actually moved to Louisville by 1811, prior to the 13 January 1812 relinquishment of their lease on Postlethwaite’s inn.[1] In his 1983 Filson Club History Quarterly article chronicling the life of Joshua and Mary’s grandson John Clark Bayless, Jobson says that Joshua Wilson first appeared on the scene in Louisville in 1811 as a “wealthy entrepreneur.”[2] According to Jobson, the Wilsons’ soon-to-be son-in-law Abijah Bayless arrived in Louisville the same year when he began a dry-goods mercantile business there.

Children of Elizabeth Brooks (1747/1750 – 1816) and Husband George Rice (abt. 1743 – 1792): Mary Rice (1776/1778 – abt. 1825) and Husband Joshua Wilson (1769 – 1823)

Postlethwaite’s inn in 1837, from Frank C. Dunn, “Postlethwait’s Tavern,” The Louisville and Nashville Employes’ [sic] Magazine 18, 11 (November 1942), p. 19

Or, Subtitled: “At the head of the table, laid out with great neatness, plenty and variety, sat our well-dressed hostess, who did the honors with ease and propriety

This is the first of a two-part series that will document the life of George Rice and Elizabeth Brooks’s daughter Mary Rice and her husband Joshua Wilson. This posting focuses on the couple’s years in Virginia and then in Bardstown and Lexington, Kentucky. The next posting will focus on the final period of their lives in Louisville, Kentucky, and Corydon, Indiana. Several of the children of George and Elizabeth Brooks Rice shared an interest in inn- and tavern-keeping. As we saw in a previous posting, soon after they arrived in Kentucky from Virginia, Mary Rice Wilson’s sister Ruth and husband Micajah Roach purchased an inn in Bardstown from Joshua and Mary Wilson. And in a later posting, we’ll see that Mary and Ruth’s brother George also had a tavern in Winchester, Virginia. I call these establishments inns-cum-taverns because they were akin to the public houses of the British Isles in which locals could eat and drink, and also in which travelers could find lodging.

Children of Elizabeth Brooks (1747/1750 – 1816) and Husband George Rice (abt. 1743 – 1792): Elizabeth Rice (1770/1775 – bef. April 1808) and Husband William McCormick (1768? – 1819 or 1824)

History of Virginia, vol. 5: Virginia Biography, p. 317

Or, Subtitled: From Virginia Farms to Kentucky Ironworks

I’ve listed Elizabeth as the second of George and Elizabeth Brooks Rice’s children, though it’s possible that her sister Mary was older, and that Elizabeth and not Ruth was even the oldest of George Rice and Elizabeth Brooks and George Rice’s children. The previously cited August 1802 list of George and Elizabeth’s children found in the case file of the Augusta County, Virginia, chancery court case filed by Province McCormick against George’s executors places Elizabeth first in the list of children.[1] But the 15 April 1808 complaint of Bartholomew Smith in his chancery suit against George Rice’s heirs and children, also previously discussed, which seems to me to have a more correct list of George and Elizabeth’s children by order of birth, lists Ruth first, followed by Mary and then Elizabeth.[2]

Children of Elizabeth Brooks (1747/1750 – 1816) and Husband George Rice (abt. 1743 – 1792): Ruth Rice (1769 – 1852) and Husband Micajah Roach (1761 – 1805)

Tennessee Gazette (8 June 1803), p. 2, col. 3

Or, Subtitled: At the “ſign of the Indian Queen” in Bairdſtown, Micajah Roach is “determined to exert himſelf to accommodate travelers in the beſt manner the country will afford, excellent ſtables, clover lotts, &c

When I promised in my last posting a follow-up piece about the children of George Rice and Elizabeth Brooks, I thought I’d have that article done in no time at all — and that the task would be simple. I thought wrong.

Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747-1805): Frederick County, Virginia, Beginnings

Will of Mary Brooks, 9 July 1786, Frederick County, Virginia, Will Bk. 5, p. 158

Or, Subtitled: “I will and bequeath to my beloved son Thomas Brooks, whom I likewise constitute make and ordain my whole and sole Executor”

I’ve now finished telling you what I know of Thomas Madison Brooks (1775-1838), who moved with his parents from Frederick County, Virginia, where he was born in 1775, to Wythe County, Virginia, in 1793, and from there to Wayne County, Kentucky, in 1798. As I’ve also shown you, at the very end of his and his wife Sarah’s lives, the couple moved their family from Kentucky to Morgan County, Alabama, in November 1836, and in 1837, Sarah died at the home of their daughter Jane Brooks Lindsey in Lawrence County, Alabama, with Thomas dying under Jane’s care in 1838.