OUR SEXTON FAMILY
OUR SEXTON FAMILY
by Patricia O'Connor - Copywrite 1998; Revised Jun 9, 2001 & Revised Nov. 20, 2003 ERRORS FOUND and CORRECTED
This site is copyrighted. Please do not copy and use my phraseology as your own! One WorldConnect
site had done just that, with no acknowledgement of where the person took it from. You may use any
information, but if you use my words, please give credit.
Many thanks to the people over the years who have helped me and contributed to these pages. With
particular thanks to Willis Sexton who has had a major breakthrough on the father of our Sexton clan.
Willis has been a great help to all of us and it is with great sadness that I must announce that Willis
Sexton died on April 6, 2005. We will miss him tremendously. Apparently he left some CD's that are
available for $20.00. Contact Nancy at willnnan @ sbcglobal.net to acquire one.
The information contained herein is not guaranteed accurate. Where I find sources, I have placed them.
However, much came from other people, without sources. If you find any error on these pages, please
let me know so it can be corrected. - - Patricia O'Connor
For many years, erroneous parentage has been making the rounds on the web and through the LDS library.
Someone, years ago, gave the parents of our William Sexton as Joseph SEXTON (son of Charles SEXTON and
Sarah JAMESON) and Mary LEE, from France. When I wrote to the person whose name was given as the source
on the information given to the LDS, she wrote back and said she was a professional genealogist, and did
not keep records after she turned them over to her client. My thought is, if she were a professional
genealogist, she would have furnished proof of this relationship.
The Joseph Sexton named was married to Phoebe CAMPBELL, died in the Shenandoah Valley on Oct. 9. 1804 and
Phoebe moved on to Wythe Co., VA with her son Thomas Campbell Sexton. As far as we now know, there is no
connection between them and our line.
Now for the good news and I have Willis Sexton's permission to quote him in this. He posted this information
on genforum on January 06, 2001
"Following orphans of John Sexton deceased were ordered to be bound out; William and Elizabeth, Benjamin and
Archibald, and John.
John Sexton and Robert Sexton had bought land in Lunenburg Co in 1759. Robert sold his in 1765, Charles sold
John's in 1772.
No other pertinent info at this time."
In reply to various comments, Willis added " Under English law, when a man died intestate the oldest son
inherited all the land. That makes Charles the oldest and he must have been old enough not to be bound
out. How old that was, I don't know. I had decided some time back that the John who married Delanas was
the oldest son of Charles, so this seems to confirm that. Robert was in Bedford Co when he sold his
property in 1765. My guess is that he was a brother.
There is no probate and no will . I can picture a scenario where Charles, who must have been only a couple
of years older than Wiliam, was left on the farm to handle it with his mother. Mother might have been
taking care of baby Pryor, nothing to show one way or the other. His mother who would have had a dower
right to 1/3 the land for her lifetime, must have been dead by 1772, however"
John Saxton bought 135 acres of land in Lunenburg Co Va on 3 Jul 1759 - - (Lunenburg Co Deed Book 5 pg 416)
The Church Wardens of Cornwell Parish were ordered to bind out Benjamin, Archibald, William, Elizabeth and
John Sexton, orphans of John Sexton on 12 May 1763 - - ( Lunenburg Co Court Order Book 9 pg 41)
Ordered that the Church Wardens of Cornwall Parish bind out William and Elizabeth Sexton orphans of John
Sexton deced to Peter Rawlings according to law. Lunenburg Co VA Court Order Book 9 pg 41, 12 May 1763
Henry Barnes lived in Cornwall Parish Lunenburg Co (later Charlotte Co) Va in 1763.Orphans Benjamin and
Archibald Sexton were bound out to him. - - Lunenburg Co VA Court Order Book 9 pg 41, 12 May 1763
Charles Sexton sold the 135 acre farm on 23 Mar 1772 - - (Charlotte Co Deed Book 3 pg 145)
In 1783 a James Newell on a treasury warrant took possession of 300 acres on Rock Creek of New River to
include the improvements of Will, Benjamin, Charles and John Sexton - - (Montgomery Co Entry Book B pg 27)
WILLIAM SEXTON Feb. 11, 1746-Dec 31, 1830
There is a minor controversy among present day Sexton descendants regarding the children of William, the
Revolutionary War veteran who married Leah Free. Some people credit him with only the children mentioned
in the estate papers of his widow, Leah. However, William had most likely been married before he married
Leah in 1785.
He was about thirty-eight years old when he married Leah: this would have been very late for a first marriage
for those days. Although no early marriage has been found for William, neither has his marriage to Leah.
They lived on the frontier, people married then 'in the sight of God' and followed up whenever a
minister happened by. If services were performed, all records are, apparently, lost.
The children mentioned in Leah's estate papers are, as named in the November 25, 1848 paper signed by Gustavus
Clark, clerk of the Probate Court of Lawrence Co., IN., "by his said widow,* towit: James Sexson, Enoch Sexson,
Jacob Sexson, Peggy Long (wife of Robert Long), William Sexson, Lemuel Sexson and Joel Sexson, and the following
grandchildren by their son Free Sexson,----".
In other words, Leah outlived her husband, and when her children learned that they were entitled to money, they
filed as Leah's children, not as William's!
Quoting from the copy of a letter written by Benjamin Swift Sexson as heard from his parents: "Two brothers,
James and William Sexson immigrated from Ireland to North America before the United States of America was born,
which was evidently in the first half of the eighteenth century.
One of these brothers raised up a family of three sons, namely, John, William, and Ben, and they were all three
soldiers in the Revolutionary War of 1776 for the independence of the United States of America.
William Sexson married Leah Free and settled in Grayson Co., Va., and at the close of the war they were the
parents of three children. They resided in Va. until their family increased to ten sons and two daughters
whose names were Archie, Isaac, Ollie, James, Enoch, Peggy, Jacob, William, Free, Lemuel, Joel and Esom."
There is more, but it is about the next generations. The point of this is that Benjamin says 'William married
Leah Free' and 'at the close of the war they were the parents of three children. He also says "their family
increased to ten sons and two daughters."And, he names Archie, Isaac and Ollie as the other three children.
The Revolutionary War was over in 1781: William and Leah were married in 1785. According to her age as given
in the pension papers and on the 1830 census of Whitley Co., KY, Leah was born ca 1866. Therefore, it is
believed that the three children born before or during the war were by a previous marriage of Williams.
William served in the Revolutionary War, enlisting at "The Royal Oak" a plantation owned by the Campbell family,
in Montgomery Co., Va. He enlisted for two three year terms, apparently came back on furlough to see his family
(could this be when his first wife died?), fell from his horse, broke a leg and wasn't able to return. He paid
James Street to serve his second term, Wm rec'd two discharges which he lost when his house burned in Kentucky.
Another thing that is a little perplexing to new researchers is the name variations. These include SEXSON,
SEXTON, SAXSON, SAXTON and, on occasion, SEXON. I have seen census reports and other papers transcribed
incorrectly as Lexson or Lexton. Possible there are other name variations. In his pension applicaton, William
Sexson calls himself SAXSON, but adds, "by some spelt Sexton". I have converted all name variations to SEXTON,
simply because I found it impossible to find everyone in my genealogy program.
DISCLAIMER - - The files I have have been collected over the last thirty years. Where I have a source, I have
inserted it inline, but some papers were given to me by my mother, others came from various Sexton family members,
not all with sources. If anything I have on this site is incorrect, please let me know. I have seen a lot of
incorrect information on the web and I have no wish to add to it. There are so many who have contributed to this
information it is impossible to name them all. I do want to thank Willis Sexton, a most knowledgeable researcher,
Suffice it to say, Sextons are a proud line, eager to find their heritage, and happy to share with others.
by Patricia O'Connor - Copywrite 1998; Revised Jun 9, 2001 & Revised Nov. 20, 2003