Carter is a fairly common name. For that reason, researching that part of the Turpin family has intimidated me. There are benefits to finding out who Elizabeth’s family members were. The Carters show up with the Turpins repeatedly. If we feel certain that our Turpins came from Halifax County, then the Carter research can begin there. We can trace both families together.
|The Area of Halifax County, Virginia in about 1795|
My first find has been the will of John Carter, dated 1781. It is documented in Will Book 1 1773-1783 Halifax County Virginia compiled by Marian Dodson Chiarito and A History of Halifax County (Virginia) by Wirt Johnson Carrington. Found in Book I on page 370, the June 18, 1781 will says:
I, John Carter, of Halifax county, Virginia, being indisposed in body but of perfect mind & memory….I lend to my beloved wife Mary Carter during her widowhood for her use & the bringing up & educating my children the land & plantation whereon I now live & the following slaves – Jack, Charles, James, Baker, Tamor, stock of all kinds, household furniture &c. To my daughter Ann Waddill Twenty-five shillings. To my daughter Elizabeth Carter one negro boy Same & feather bed & furniture & to her heirs & assigns forever. To my daughter Mary Carter one negro boy Crafford & feather bed & furniture & do. To my daughter Judith Carter one negro girle Hannah & feather bed & do. To my daughter Salley Carter Seventy-five pounds specia in gold or silver & feather bed & furniture & do. To my three eldest sons Richard, Theoderick & Robert Carter my Creek land I purchased of Geore (sic) Ridley containing 450 acres to be equally divided between them, also a good feather bed & furniture apiece & if either die before the come of age the survivors to inherit the land by equal division to them & their heirs & assigns forever. To my son James Carter the land whereon I now live & a good feather bed & furniture & do. To my son Francis Carter 290 acres lying out on the road adjoinin the land of W. Hobson & a good feather bed & furniture & do. If either of my two youngest sons Francis or James die before age 21 years the survivor to heir the dec’d brothers share of land. If either of my daughters Elizabeth, Mary, Judith or Salley Carter should die before they come of age or marry their legacy should be equally divided among the survivors. At the coming of age of my youngest son the above mentioned slaves, Jack, Charles, James, Baker, Tamor with future increase & all the rest & remainder of my personal estate should be equally divided among my beloved wife & children afore mentioned, my daughter Ann Waddill excepted.
The Executors named were his beloved wife Mary Carter, also Capt. James Turner, Mr. William Boyd, his brothers Richard and Theo. Carter. Witnesses were Benja. Hobson, David Bates, Chas. Carter, Noel Waddill, Theo. Carter. The will was probated the same year, on 20 September.
We can tie our Elizabeth Carter to the Elizabeth in the will through her and John Turpin’s 1797 Halifax County marriage record. Elizabeth’s father would have been dead when she married. The bondsman for Elizabeth was a Richard Carter, who could be her brother or her uncle. In that set of marriage records an annotation was made when the bondsman was a father or mother. That is not noted for Elizabeth and John’s record.
Elizabeth was born about 1775 if the 1850 census recorded her age correctly. That would make her six years old when her father John Carter died. She would have been 22 years old when she married 27 year old John Turpin.
Interestingly, looking back at the Halifax County tax lists, Richard Carter lived next to Michael Turpin, the father of John Turpin in 1786. Elizabeth and John would have been about 11 and 16 respectively. Most of the tax lists were ordered alphabetically so any other tax lists would not indicate how long the Turpins and Carter lived near each other. My next steps are to look for land records.