Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Will: James Reid (1821)

Prince William County Will Book L, pg. 376
14 May 1821; proved 06 Aug 1821

In the name of God Amen I JAMES REID of the town of Dumfries and State of Virginia make my last will and testament as follows: I leave all my estate real and personal to ELIZABETH P. OWENS during her life and after her death to be equally divided among her children.  Witness my hand and seal this 14th day of May in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty one.

JAMES REID  {seal}

last will and testament JOHN SPENCE, HECTOR ALEXANDER, J. LAWSON

At a Court of Quarterly Sessions held for Prince William County August 6th 1821.  This last will and testament of JAMES REID decd was presented to the Court and being proved by the oaths of JOHN SPENCE and HECTOR ALEXANDER two of the witnesses thereto is ordered to be recorded.

And at a Court of Quarterly Sessions cont. and held for said County August 9th 1821 Administration of the Estate of JAMES REID decd with the Will annexed is granted to PEYTON NORVELL who took the oath prescribed by law and entered into and ackd. A bond with security according to law.

Teste, PHIL. D. DAWE

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sunday's Obituary: John J. Lyell

The Sun (Baltimore, MD)
30 October 1899


[Special Dispatch to the Baltimore Sun]

Haymarket, Va., Oct. 29 -- Mr. John J. Lyell, a resident of Prince William county, died at his beautiful home, "Sanoma," at 5:30 o'clock yesterday afternoon.  Mr. Lyell had been a sufferer from Bright's disease for many years, being practically beyond all hope of recovery for the last few months, and was finally stricken with an attack of the heart.  Mr. Lyell had been a resident of this locality only about four years, he having moved here from Richmond, Va., and bought his farm, "Sanoma," about two miles from this place, which he has since much improved and beautified.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Friday's Faces from the Past: Woodbine Baptist Church

As Woodbine Church prepares to celebrate its 140th Anniversary, it seemed appropriate to post a photo of its congregation from the late 1930's.  The group is standing at the front door of the original 1875 one-room church building.

Many thanks to Miss Jane Abel, a long-time member of Woodbine's congregation (she's the little gal with the bow in the picture) for sharing her photo!

Miss Jane tried her best to remember the names of everyone in the picture but there are a few she was unable to identify.  Do you recognize any of the faces in this photo?

Woodbine Baptist Church Congregation (approx 1938)
Photo courtesy of Jane Abel (used with permission)

Front Row (left to right) - Little girl, Vernon Beavers, little girl, Bill Posey, Gloria Weber, Billy Zackey, Margie Cornwell, Penny (Hattie Warren's foster child)

Middle Row - Rev. Howard Caviness, Helen Beavers, Geneva Jones and baby, Minnie Posey and Bobby, woman with baby, Jane Abel (wearing the little bow), David Abel (little boy below), Lillian Abel and Frankie, Annie Zackey, unidentified man

Back Row - Louise Beavers Cornwell and Denny, Joyce Beavers Jones and son, woman with baby, Hattie Abel Warren and Betty Lou, woman with baby.


Pastor Gene Wells and the congregation of Woodbine Church invite the Community to celebrate their 140th Anniversary on Saturday, 23 May 2015, from Noon until Three.  The event is open to the public and admission is FREE!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Wednesday's Child: Harvey J. Brown


Sep. 28, 1902
Jan. 22, 1919

Manssas Journal
24 January 1919

Harry, the sixteen year old son of Mr. R. L. Brown, of Aden, died on Wednesday, the victim of influenza, followed by pneumonia.  Interment was made at Valley View cemetery this afternoon at 2 o'clock.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Will: Charles Johnson (1805)

Prince William County Will Book I, pg. 54
21 Dec 1801; proved 6 May 1805

In the name of God Amen I CHARLES JOHNSON of Prince William County in the State of Virginia being in tolerable health of body and sound memory thanks be to God for his mercies, calling to mind the uncertainty of this life and knowing that it is appointed for all men once to dye for the peace of my family after my deceas. And for the setling my worldly affairs, do make and ordaine this my last will and testament, as follows, first my desire that all my just debts and funeral expense be paid and satisfied, secondly I give to my beloved wife MARY all my estate both real and personal during her life or widowhood and after her deceas or marriage to be equally divided between my three sons, and two daughters; that is to say my sons BALEY, ROBERT, and ELIJAH, my daughters ALLY and SELAH.  I constitute make and ordain my beloved wife MARY and my son BALEY Executrix and Executor of this my last will and testament, hereby ratifying and confirmation this and no other to be my last will and testament.  In Witness whereof I have set my hand and seal this twenty first day of December One thousand eight hundred and one.

CHARLES [his mark] JOHNSON  {seal}

Signed sealed and declared by CHARLES JOHNSON not be his last Will & Testament in the presence of us who subscribed our names in his presence


At a Court held for Prince William County April 1805.

This last will and testament of CHARLES JOHNSON decd. was presented to the court and being proved by the oath of MOSES MOSS was ordered to be certified.

At a Court held for sd. County May 6th 1805.

This said Will of CH. JOHNSON decd. was presented to the Court and being fully proved by the Oath of JOHN REDMAN was ordered to be recorded.



Sunday, May 17, 2015

Church Record Sunday: Easter Program (1920)

Manassas Journal
2 April 1920


An interesting program was rendered Sunday evening at Woodbine Church by the young folk of the community.  An Easter program is being prepared for next Sunday evening, with Mrs. J. M. Russell as leader.

Last Sunday's program included a song, Scripture reading, invocation, a solo, Jesus Loves Me, by Mr. Odie Breeden; a recitation, Four Leaf Clover, by Annie Golihew; a reading, The Leak in the Dyke, by Miss Pauline Smith; a solo by Mr. W. A. Breeden; a recitation, The Old Homestead, by Miss Maud Norman; a reading, Somebody's Mother, by Miss Annie Cornwell; a duet, a reading, Little Golden Hair, by Miss Pearl Russell; a reading, A Psalm of Life, by Miss Bessie Cornwell, a duet, a reading, We Parted in Silence, by Miss Goldie Golihew; a song, a reading, by Miss Myrtle Cornwell, a reading, The Volunteer, by Miss Ruth Wheaton; a song, a recitation, The Widower, by Miss Maud Norman; a solo, a recitation by Miss Annie Golihew and a recitation by Mrs. Hill.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Newspaper Tidbits: Crime and Punishment

Alexandria Gazette (Virginia)
10 October 1810

Prince William County, to wit.

ALEXANDER HENDERSON, one of the Commonwealth's Justices of the Peace of the said County, to all Sheriffs, Mayors, Baliffs, Constables and Headboroughs, within the Commonwealth of Virginia.

WHEREAS complaint is made to me this day, upon the oath of Samuel Davis, that James Cornwell, laborer, who was lately committed to the jail of the said county of Prince William, by warrant from Henry Washington, a Justice of the Peace for the said county, on suspicion of felony, did on the night of the twenty-sixth instant forcibly escape from the said jail, and is now going at large: These are therefore, in the name of the Commonwealth, to require you and every of you, in your respective counties, cities, towns and precincts, to make diligent search, by way of hue and cry for the said James Cornwell, and having found, to seize and retake, and safely convey, or cause him to be safely conveyed, to the jail of the said county of Prince William, there to be kept until he shall be thence discharged by due course of law.

Given under my hand and seal this twenty eight day of September, 1810.

A. Henderson (Seal)
Dumfries, Sept. 30-Oct. 3. d2w

~ ~ ~

Richmond Times Dispatch (Virginia)
9 February 1905


Twenty-five Lashes Laid on by the Sheriff for Stealing.

Manassas, Va. Feb. 8 -- In the Circuit Court of Prince William county Judge C. E. Nicol presiding, Harrison Brammel and G. Robert Hales, two white boys, aged twelve and thirteen yars, respectively, were to-day ordered to be given twenty-five lashes for committing larceny.  The parents of the boys who reside near Occoquan, were willing that they should be whipped, the boys having entered a plea of guilty to the indictments agains them.

The boys were carried from the courthouse to the county jail, where Sheriff F. C. Rovabaugh executed the order of the court.