Philips of Early Virginia
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(1) William Philips, Sr.

William Philips
 
Born:         About 1679
Died:          About 1721 in Surry County, VA
 
Married:     Mary Swann

William Philips is the earliest Philips ancestor I have been able to identify to date.  Following is an overview of William from a well known reference book.  This book spells Willam Philips last name with one "L".  For that reason, I will do the same on this page, having no reason to spell it otherwise as I have not seen the hand written copies of either William or Mary's wills or the deeds shown on this page.

Southside Virginia Families, Volume 2

By John Bennett Boddie, Published 1956, Pages 350-356

 

PHILIPS of SURRY

 

William Philips, first known ancestor, married Mary Swann, daughter of Mathew Swann, a prominent early citizen of Surry.  (Col.Surry-107).

The will of William Philips, dated 2-14-1721, probated 4-19-1721 mentioned wife Mary, sons John, William, Swann, and Mathew Philips, the last three being under the age of 16 years, and daughters: Anne; Mary; and Elizabeth Philips.

The inventory of William Philips, signed by Mary Philips in April, 1721, listed personal property onthe Blackwater plantation, the Round Hill plantation and the "Home" plantation.

As Mary Philips, widow of William Phillips, she made her will in Surry 3-28-1727.  The will mentions daughter Mary, wife of John Edwards, daughter Ann, niece Mary Crafford, daughter of Carter Crafford, daughter Elizabeth, wife of William Hancock, sons William and Swan Philips and grandaughters Ann Hancock and Mary Edwards. Carter Crafford was appointed executor. (Surry Wills 1715-1730, 697).

John Philips appears on the rent rolls of Surry in 1704 with 270 acres of land and William Philips with 300. (lbid: p.214).

 

     Issue of William Philips and Mary Swann.

 

I.   John Philips - of whom later - mentioned in will of Mathew

     Swann.

II.  Mary Philips m. John Edwards - untraced.

III. Elizabeth Philips m. William Hancock - untraced.

IV. Ann Philips - no record.

V.  William Philips, untraced. On 9-19-1738 he sold to Wm.

    George land that his father Wm. had bought 11-5-1694. Hence

    he is not the William Philips whose will was probated in

    Surry in 1734, as stated in V.H.G. - p.308.

VI. Swann Philips - no record.

VII. Mathew Philips - no record.

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Following is information I excerpted from the book, Surry County VA Tithables, 1668-1703.  It is unclear to me when our William Philips first showed up in these lists or what else we can learn from these lists.  White males were required to register on these lists upon reaching the age of 16.
 
You will notice that all of the Phillips names on these lists are spelled with two "L"s in this book.

Surry County [Virginia] Tithables, 1668-1703

By Edgar MacDonald, Richard Slatten

 

1677

John Phillips                      1

William Phillips                               4

 

1678

John Phillips                      1

John Phillips                      1

William Phillips, Rich Hide, William  Carpinder,

William Knot, William Chivers, Samuel Pellett, a servt. Maide                  5

 

1684

John Phillips, Corn. Cardinpaine                               illegible

John Phillips Jr.                                1

To ye parish:  John Phillips Sr., Corn. Cardinpane,  Robert House Sr.                        3             

 

1687

John and William Phillips            2

John Phillips Jr.                                                1

John Phillips Sr.                                                -1

 

1690

John and William Phillips            2

 

1691

John Phillips, Charles Digby, Owen Emitt             3

John Phillips, William Phillips                                   2

 

Between 1691 and 1694

John Phillips                      1

 

1694

John Phillips Sr., John Phillips Jr.                              2

Mrs. Elizabeth Ruffin, William Phillips, &

Sambo, Jack, Will, James, Tom, Judah negroes                  2

 

Between 1694 and 1697

John Phillips and John Phillips Jr.                             2

 

Between 1694 and 1697

John Phillips and John Phillips Jr.                             2

 

1697

John Phillips Jr.                                1

Ruth Phillips, Luke Muchow (?)                                1

 

1700

Joseph Thorpe, John Phillips, Isbell a negro        3

John Bentley and William and Thomas Phillips,

William Lucas, William Carrell and Samboe negro           3

 

Between 1700 and 1703

John Wapple and William Phillips           2

John Bentley and Thomas Philps              2

 

1703

William Phillips, John Phillips, Dick a negro        3

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Below is some of what we know about the children of William Philips and his wife Mary Swann.  I have attempted to locate the properties included in William and Mary's wills to aid in following who eventually owned these properties.

John Philips

In 1702 when Mathew Swann wrote his will, he left his daughter Mary, who is the wife of William Philips, and her son John Philips his "house and plantation where I now live".  It's likely that John was the only son of William and Mary Philips born at that time and that was the reason he was named in the will. 

 

This would establish the birth date of John Philips sometime around 1700.  Since he purchased 265 acres in 1719 from Lovelace Savidge, it's likely he was born in 1698 which would make him 21 in 1719 and eligible to own land.

 

 He would have been about 23 when his father, William Philips died and about 29 when his mother, Mary Swann died.

 

He went on to patent 235 acres in 1735 at 37, 320 acres in 1746 at 48, and 120 acres in 1757 at 59, signing his will in 1758 at 60 years of age.

 

Mathew Swann left his daughter Sarah the rest of his land adjoining Mary when Sarah reached 18 years of age. We can assume that each daughter inherited 100 acres from this 200 acre tract that Mathew Swann purchased in 1684.

 

14 Dec 1702      Will of Matthew Swann:. To daughter Mary, wife of William Philips, and to grandson John Philips, my house and plantation where I now live. To daughter Sarah, all the remainder of my land adjoining Mary, when 18 years old. Wit: Ar: Allen, Jno Allen, Robt. Ruffin.

 

As I stated on the Mathew Swann page, I will refer to these two tracts as "Mary and John's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place" which was given to Mary and John and "Sarah's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place" which was given to Sarah.

When William Philips, Sr. died he left John the "Home Plantation" that had been listed in the inventory of his estate as described in the Southside Virginia Families excerpt at the top of the page.  This is the 100 acres  William's wife had heired from her father Mathew Phillips along with her son John Phillips, "Mary and John's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place".

 

1721 Will of William Philips, Sr.

 

to my son John Phillips the Plantation wheron I now live which was given to my wife by her Father Mathew Swann.

Will of Mary Philips, wife of William Philips

Filed 1727

 

…To daughter, Mary Edwards, wife of John Edwards, my Plantation where I live for her life, then to my daughter Ann Philips….

 

It appears that William Philips, Jr.'s wife Mary left the "Mary and John's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place" to her daughter Mary even though it was the same land Mathew Swan willed to her and her son John Philips and the same land Mary's husband William Philips, Sr. willed to their son John.

 

It appears that William Philips' wife Mary continued to live on this property and retain title to it, even though it was willed to John.  Where else would she have gone and how would she have obtained the property that she left to Mary and then to Ann in her will?  Apparently John was an adult and didn't need the 100 acres and his mother needed a place to live.

 

John Philips is not mentioned in his mother's will, but this does not mean he is dead as some have alleged.  It may only mean that he is a successful adult and doesn't need the 100 acres that his mother lived on and that he had already turned down once when his father died and willed it to him.

 

When John Philips wrote his will in 1758 he also didn't name his sons John, Joseph, or Arthur, apparently because they were all adults and didn't need to inherit his property.  I think adult children were often left off wills when there were young children in the family.

Mary Philips

1721 Will of William Philips, Sr.

 

The "Sarah's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place"  was left to son Mathew with the stipulation that if he died without issue it would go to son Swann unless he died without issue in which case it would go to son William unless he died without issue in which case it would go to daughter Mary.

 

However, there is no indication that Mary ever received this property.  The John Anderson Brayton book mistakenly identifies "Sarah's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place" as the land Mary's husband John Edwards sold in 1745 in the deed listed below.

Mary actually got the 100 acres her husband later sold from her mother by will in 1727.  Even though this 100 acres was left to Mary's brother John by her father William Philips, John apparently allowed his mother Mary to remain living on the land that Mary and John had been willed by Mathew Swann and retain ownership of the land.  Otherwise, how would Mary have obtained a "Plantation where I live" as stated in her will below?

 

Will of Mary Philips, wife of William Philips

Filed 1727

 

…To daughter, Mary Edwards, wife of John Edwards, my Plantation where I live for her life, then to my daughter Ann Philips….

This appears to be the same land William Philips, Sr. left to his son John as discussed above under John's name, "Mary and John's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place". Mary got this 100 acres from her mother rather than through the death of three of her brothers.  It is half of Mathew Swann's home place but not the half Brayton thought it was.

In 1745 Mary's husband, John Edwards sold the same land William Philips, Sr. left to his son John as discussed above and under John's name, "Mary and John's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place".

Surry

Surry co.,VA Deed Book 4 p 285 dated and Rec. 17 April 1745

John Edwards of Isle of Wight Co., VA to Thomas Binn of Surry Co., 30 Pounds Current Money, 100A in Southwark  Parish bounded by Col Ludwell, the Cartpath that leads to Piney Road and William Holt.                                    

Signed  JOHN EDWARDS

Elizabeth Philips

Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5: Families G-P By John Frederick Dorman

 

WILLIAM HANCOCK (Jane Holt, Randall , Randall ) left will 11 Aug. 1764-18 April 1765. He married Elizabeth Phillips, daughter of William and Mary (Swann) Phillips.

 

The following information appears in this book as well and indicates that Hartwell Philips, a grandson of William Philips, Sr., also married a Hancock.

 

JANE [Jean] HANCOCK (John , Jane Holt, Randall , Randall ), born 15 Aug. 1741, married, (bond 24) Feb. 1762, Hartwell Phillips, son of John and Martha (Crafford) Phillips, of Edgecombe Co., N.C., who married (2), b 1772, Feraby Jones and left will about 1807.

Ann Philips

Will of Mary Philips, wife of William Philips

Filed 1727

 

…To daughter, Mary Edwards, wife of John Edwards, my Plantation where I live for her life, then to my daughter Ann Philips….

This appears to be the same land William Philips left to son John, "Mary and John's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place", as discussed above under John's name.
 
This land apparently was where John's mother Mary lived until she died and left it to her daughter Mary.
 
As we see above, Ann's sister Mary and her husband John Edwards sold this land in 1745, so it never actually went to John.  It went to Mary and her husband later sold it.

William Phillips, Jr.

1721 Will of William Philips, Sr.

 

Son William Phillips the Plantation wheron Simon Murphy lately lived which I purchased of James Briggs containing by estimation 300 Acres

 

to my Son William Phillips my Plantation upon the Cypress Swamp which I purchased of William Hooker Containing by estimation two hundred Acres to him and the heirs of his body lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give my said Plantation aforesaid to my Son Swan Phillips and the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give my Plantation aforesaid to my Son Mathew Phillips and to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and if it should so happen that my Sons William, Swann and Mathew  should die without such heirs that then I give my said Plantation aforesaid to my Daughter Anne and to the heirs of her body Lawfully begotten for Ever.

 

The 200 acres on the Cypress Swamp was willed with the stipulation that if Mathew died without issue it would go to son Swan unless he died without issue in which case it would go to son Mathew unless he died without issue in which case it would go to daughter Anne.

However, in 1738 William Philips, Jr. sold the "Plantation upon the Cypress Swamp which he purchased of William Hooker containing by estimation two hundred acres"  that he inherited from his father William Philips.

 

19 Sept 1738      Indenture made from William Phillips of Lawnes Creek [Parish]  to William George of Parish and County aforesaid.  Sum of  5 Shillings… Parcel of Land containing by estimation 200ac more or less … lying and being in Southwark Parish … County aforesaid … near the Cypress Swamp and  the Land that my Father bought of William Hooker by deeds dated the 5th of Nov 1694 and is bounded as in and by the sd Deeds… signed William Phillips and Sarah Phillips.  Wit: Chas. Binns, Joseph Delk and John Champion.

In 1753 after William Philips, Jr. died an Account of Estate was filed listng Benjamin Phillips as heir at law, indicating that William, Jr. lived until 1753 and had a son named Benjamin. 

 

Presumably William, Jr. still owned the "Plantation wheron Simon Murphy lately lived which I purchased of James Briggs containing by estimation 300 Acres" that he was willed by his father William Philips, Sr. and left it to his son Benjamin.

 

8 Dec. 1753  Surry County VA Wills Deeds Etc.  Book #9  p 880 

 

Account of Estate of William Phillips, dec’d, lists Nicholas Faulcon, Thomas Lane, Dr. Adams, John Edmons, Edmond Waller, John Crafford, David Alexander, William Holt, Mrs. Elizabeth Clinch,  Samuel Pritloe, William Edwards,Jr., James Carret, William Clinch, John Ruffin and BENJAMIN PHILLIPS, Heir at Law.

 

The Wills and Administration Index at the Library of VA lists an estate inventory for a Benjamin Philips, with one "L", in 1767 under Surry Co. Deeds, Wills, Etc. 10, 1754-68, p. 458-459.

Swan Philips

1721 Will of William Philips, Sr.

 

to my son Swan Phillips my Plantation in the Isle of Wight County upon the Suchahanna branch and by me purchased by Mr. William Edwards.

Swann Philips inherited land "upon the Suchahanna branch and by me purchased by Mr. William Edwards."   We can see below that this land is part of the William Edwards 1714 patent that was located on the north side of Round Hill Swamp.

This is the same "Round Hill Plantation" that had been listed in the inventory of his estate as described in the Southside Virginia Families excerpt at the top of the page.

The  Round Hil Swamp location of this land has been determined by looking at a 1714 William Edwards land patent and comparing it to two other deeds resulting from sales of parts of the patent.

The original land patent to William Edwards:

Library of VA

Edwards, William.

16 June 1714.

Available on microfilm. Virginia State Land Office. Patents 1-42, reels 1-41.

Location: Isle of Wight County.

Description: 1275 acres on the south side of the main Blackwater Swamp. Beg.g at the mouth of a branch, on the north east side of Round Hill Swamp.

Source: Land Office Patents No. 10, 1710-1719, p. 174 (Reel 10).

 

The 1757 purchase of 100 acres from this patent by Joseph Jones.

 

Page 146: JOHN EXUM of Edgecombe County, North Carolina to JOSEPH JONES dated 9 Feb 1757 - 100 acres on Round Hill Swamp adj. the north side of Old Field Branch, JESSE JONES, JOSEPH VASSER, Gums old field, and Sasgehanna Branch (patent to WILLIAM EDWARDS on 16 Jun 1714), S: JOHN (signed) EXUM, W: JOHN (signed) VASSER, BENJAMIN (signed) VASSER, and JOSEPH (signed) VASSER

 

The 1757  purchase of 150 acres from this patent by Joseph Vasser. 

 

Pages 146-148: JOHN EXUM of Edgecombe County, North Carolina to JOSEPH VASSER dated 7 Feb 1757 - 150 acres on Suscahanna Branch adj. Exums old field, JOSEPH VASSER, JOSEPH JONES, and Mirey Branch (patent to WILLIAM EDWARDS on 16 Jun 1714 who sold it to ALEXANDER YOUNG on 15 Sep 1721 and in the will of sd. ALEXANDER given to sd. JOHN), S: JOHN (signed) EXUM, W: JOSEPH (signed) JONES, BENJAMIN (signed) VASSER, JOSEPH (signed) VASSER, and JOHN (signed) VASSER

I have been unable to locate any further record regarding Swann Philips, including any record regarding the disposition of the "Round Hill" land he inherited. 

Mathew Philips

1721 Will of William Philips, Sr.

to my Son Matthew Phillips my Plantation the Parcell of Land I purchased of Carter Crafford lying on the North Side my spring branch Northerly on Coll. Phillip Ludwells Land and from the head of my spring branch by a line of mark’d Trees to the Path which goes from rich neck to Chipoakes it being the Land which Mathew Swan gave to his Daughter Sarah and now wife to Carter Crafford to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give and bequeath my said tract of land to my son Swan Phillips and to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs to my Son William Phillips and the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and if it should happen that my Sons Mathew, Swann and William should dye without survivors I Give my said parcel of Land aforesaid to my Daughter Mary and to the heirs of her body Lawfully begotten for Ever.

 

The "Sarah's 100 acre Mathew Swan home place"  was left to son Mathew with the stipulation that if he died without issue it would go to son Swann unless he died without issue in which case it would go to son William unless he died without issue in which case it would go to daughter Mary.

 

However, there is no indication that Mary ever received this property.  

 

I have been unable to locate any additional information about Mathew Philips or the disposition of this land, however neither are proof that he died young.

 

Mathew was not mentioned in the 1727 will of his mother Jane, but that is not necessarily a sign that he is dead as I have mentioned before.  I could be that he was an adult and didn't need a further inheritance.

William Phillips, Sr. was a friend of John and Ann Binum.
 
20 Jul 1715  --  Ann Binum relict of John Binum deced came into court & made oath that the sd Jno. Binum departed this life without making any will so far as she knows or believes and on her motion…” is granted administration of the estate.  William Phillips and James Nickolls her securities.  William Foster, Robert Warren, Zachariah Madderah, and Allen Warren appointed to take inventory of the estate.  [Surry Orders 1713-1718, p61]

1721 Will of William Philips

 

"I William Phillips of Lawnes Creek parish in the County of Surry being of a reasonable Sound and disposing mind and memory do make this my Last Will and Testament in manner following Viz
First and Principally my Soul to God Almighty the father of Spirits trusting and firmly believing through the Merrits ---etc.--etc. -----
I Give and bequeath and dispose of as followeth)
Item- I Give and bequeath to my son John Phillips the Plantation wheron I now live which was given to my wife by her Father Mathew Swann.

Item- I give and bequeath to my Son William Phillips the Plantation wheron Simon Murphy lately lived which I purchased of James Briggs containing by estimation 300 Acres to him and the heirs of his body lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give my said Plantation aforesaid to my Son Swan Phillips and the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give my Plantation aforesaid to my Son Mathew Phillips and to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and if it should so happen that my Sons William, Swann and Mathew should die without such heirs that then I give my said Plantation aforesaid to my Daughter Anne and to the heirs of her body Lawfully begotten for Ever.
Item- I Give and bequeath to my Son William Phillips my Plantation upon the Cypress Swamp which I purchased of William Hooker Containing by estimation two hundred Acres a
nd a Negro woman named Hannah to him and his heirs for Ever.


Item- I Give and bequeath to my son Swan Phillips my Plantation in the Isle of Wight County upon the Suchahanna branch and by me purchased by Mr. William Edwards and to him and his heirs for ever and my Negro boy called Abram to him and his heirs for Ever.


Item- I Give and bequeath to my Son Matthew Phillips my Plantation the Parcell of Land I purchased of Carter Crafford lying on the North Side my spring branch Northerly on Coll. Phillip Ludwells Land and from the head of my spring branch by a line of mark’d Trees to the Path which goes from rich neck to Chipoakes it being the Land which Mathew Swan gave to his Daughter Sarah and now wife to Carter Crafford to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs I give and bequeath my said tract of land to my son Swan Phillips and to the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and for want of such heirs to my Son William Phillips and the heirs of his body Lawfully begotten for Ever and if it should happen that my Sons Mathew, Swann and William should dye without survivors I Give my said parcel of Land aforesaid to my Daughter Mary and to the heirs of her body Lawfully begotten for Ever.
-------- Several bequests of money, furniture, slaves etc . follow the above—

Item- It is my will and desire that my son William enjoy the benefit of his own Labour and have his Estate delivered to him at the age of Sixteen years and that he shall take into his hands his Sister Annies Estate and that my Sons Mathew and Swann receive and enjoy and have the benefit of their Labour at Sixteen years of age and have their Estates delivered to them at the age of Eighteen years.


Item- I Give and bequeath all the rest of my Estate of what nature kind or property soever in Virginia or elsewhere to be Equally divided between my Loving Wife Mary and my four Sons and three Daughters and too hereby nominate, appoint and ordain my Loving Wife Mary and my two Sons William and Swann Executors of this my Last Will and testament In Testimony of all I have hereunto set my hand and Seal this 14th day of February 1720/21


Signed, Sealed published and Delivered
Declared to be the Last Will & Testm’t of the Subscribers
William (W) Phillips (Mark)"

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Will of Mary Philips

wife of William Philips, Sr.

 

Mary Swann Phillips, Surry County Virginia will 3-28-1727 

 

…To daughter, Mary Edwards, wife of John Edwards, my Plantation where I live for her life, then to my daughter Ann Philips….

 

… To daughter Ann, …girl called Lucy… and at her death said negro to my granddaughter, Ann Edwards.

 

…To Ann Philips, 25 ₤ current money, 8 new pewter dishes, 8 pewter plates, 2 pewter basons, 8 pewter porringers, falling table, 6 Russia chairs, tankard, two iron potts, riding horse, bridle and saddle, two feather beds and furniture.. If no issue to be equally divided between granddaughters Mary Hancocke and Ann Edwards.  Bequest to niece Mary Crafford, daughter of Carter Crafford, of 40 shillings.

 

To sons William and Swann Philips, daughters Elizabeth Handcock and Mary Edwards each six pounds current money.

 

To John Edwards, my son-in-law four barrels Indian corn.  To son, William Philips, and son in Law William Hancock, the same.  Rest of Estate to be equally divided among my five children, William and Swann Philps, Elizabeth Hancocke, Mary Edwards, and Ann Philips.  Friend Carter Crafford, Executor and the witnesses were William Newsom, Samuel Taylor and John Ruffin.

 

*Wills and Administrations of Surry County, Virginia 1671-1750. Abstracted and compiled by Eliza Timberlake Davis, 1955 Page 129

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