1st Edition: May 4, 2015, by Lenny Famon Caudill II
Matthew and Nathaniel Laffoon were brothers.
I first became interested in these two characters while researching the August 10, 1759, 400 ac., land patent to Stephen Caudle (1) in Lunenburg Co., VA. You see, Matthew and Nathaniel Laffoon likewise received 400 acs. adjacent to Stephen on the very same date! After a great deal of research, I was finally successful at conclusively establishing that Stephen and the Laffoon’s owned property just north of Flat Rock Road at the Lunenburg – Brunswick Co. line.
The ‘Eureka Moment‘ occurred while looking at a ‘Gilmer Map’(2) prepared during the Civil War. On that map, I noticed a very faint notation indicating M. Laffoon. Now, by 1864 Matthew Sr. had been dead for half a century, however, his descendants seemingly still owned the land and his mill was still marked on the map. As described in the patents, the property was situated at the fork in the Great Creek.
Prior to the time of residing at the Great Creek property (1759), Nathaniel Laffoon can be located 7.5 miles to the north northeast in Brunswick Co. on the Nottoway River. He is witnessing a deed on Nov. 27, 1753 for Henry Williams (3) of North Farnham Parish, Richmond Co., VA. The property metes and bounds includes a call, “… purchased of John Davis on Sampson Caudle’s line”. Stephen and Sampson owned property up in the area of Red Oak Branch and Nathaniel is associating with them six years prior to the 1759 acquisitions. (see our Colonial Records Page). During the Revolutionary War Pension Application of Nathaniel Laffoon Jr., Matthew’s nephew, he attests that he’s from Lunenburg Co. and his parents moved there from Brunswick when he was young. By calculation, Nathaniel Laffoon Jr. was born about 1746 so this testimony certainly substantiates the research – he’s have been thirteen years old in 1759.
When writing his Last Will and Testament, Matthew Laffoon leaves his Mill to his partner stating, “I desire that my half of the Mill be sold as soon as my Executors may direct with the land that I own then, and as Nathaniel Lucas joined me in building of the said Mill …”.
Matthew Laffoon Sr. was born about 1727 and died in April of 1789. His will is dated March 25, 1789, one month before his passing. In about 1749, Matthew married Mary ?.
Children of Matthew Laffoon and Mary ?: (Many of his children were named in his will).
- Stephen Dennis Laffoon;
- Matthew Laffoon, Jr.;
- Elizabeth Laffoon;
- Simon Laffoon;
- Daniel Laffoon;
- Lucretia Laffoon;
- Celah Hill Laffoon;
The number of children born unto Matthew and Mary varies wildly dependent upon which source you select. Those named above are clearly named in his will thus included herein.
In 1826, Stephen Dennis Laffoon is located in Surry Co., NC. associating with Lewis Caudle. At that time, Stephen ‘Dennis’ Laffoon is attesting that he was Lewis’ neighbor in Lunenburg Co., VA and that he has personal knowledge that John Caudle, Sr., John Caudle Jr., and William Caudle served during the Revolution. Lewis’ was applying for Pension benefits and his application was denied.
Nathaniel Laffoon, Sr. was born about 1720 and died in sometime around 1810.
Children of Nathaniel Laffoon:
- Nathaniel Laffoon, Jr.;
The number of children born unto Nathaniel varies wildly dependent upon which source you select. Those named above are clearly his children thus included herein.
Stephen Dennis Laffoon had a son Marcus b. abt. 1794. Marcus had a daughter Mary b. Nov. 29, 1827. Mary married John Jackson ‘JJ’ Caudill, son of Elder David Daniel Caudill May 24, 1849 in Surry Co., NC. JJ and Mary are buried at the New Covenant Church in Traphill, NC., about twenty-five yards from my grandparents.
For those interested in more detail on the Laffoon’s, there’s plenty available and they were an active bunch! I can recommend the Vestry Books of St. Andrews Parish, Brunswick Co. Deeds, the Revolutionary War Pension applications of Nathaniel Laffoon Jr. and James Laffoon, Brunswick Co. Order Books, and the will of Matthew Laffoon. My coverage of this topic is scant by design and admission — the relationship to the Caudle’s was my primary interest.
Leave me a comment or two in the blog!
- Library of Virginia – Land Office Patents. No. 34, 1756-1765, p. 362. (Reel #33-34).
- See http://www2.lib.unc.edu/dc/gilmer/
- Library of Virginia – Brunswick County, VA. Deed Book No. 5, 1751 – 1755 c Pt. 1, [vi] index, p. 1-388; Pt. 2, p. 389-659, 700-769, 800, pp. 540-541. (LOV ~ Reel #3).