Will the real James Skaggs please stand up? James and Susanna

There are many genealogical records available from the 1700s for James Skaggs, making him appear to have been everywhere at all times.  I want to try to take advantage of years of genealogical research by many Skaggs researchers to separate these James from each other:
  1. James and Rachel Skaggs - the parents of the Long Hunters
  2. James, Jr. and Mary Skaggs - the Longhunter James, son of James and Rachel
  3. James and Susanna Scaggs - lived side-by-side with the Long Hunters in Virginia, then went west and ended up in Warren County, Kentucky
  4. James C. Skaggs – Revolutionary War pensioner from South Carolina
  5. James Scaggs and Catherine Reaser/Mary Brinker - lived with first wife Catherine Reaser in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, then with second wife Mary Brinker in Frederick County, Virginia and the Chew's Folly farm in Prince George's County, Maryland
This was James who married Susanna (Moredock?) and lived in the New River area of Virginia, what is now Grainger County, Tennessee and Warren County, Kentucky.
1752-1756 Frederick County MD Land Records 929-930. John Johnson (on Monocacy) recorded 1 Dec. 1755, made 27 Nov. 1755, between Elizabeth Scaggs of FC, widow. Whereas John Johnson became bound on the 22nd instant to James Scaggs and Charles Scaggs of FC, in the penal sum of 97 pcm MD, for the payment of the portions of the said James & Charles Scaggs of their deceased father, Charles Scaggs his estate, this indenture is for indemnification and counter security to the said John Johnson against all debts, and in consideration of 5 shillings, sells tract or parcel called "Scagg's Delight," containing 50 acres more or less. Signed Elizabeth Scaggs, by mark before J. Darnall, Mary Darnall. Receipt & ack.
A James Scaggs and brother Charles were sons of Charles Scaggs, born December 9, 1709 in Prince George’s Co., Maryland.  The sons lost their inheritance, the farm “Scaggs Delight” when their mother, Elizabeth, as executrix, squandered the estate while it was in probate.  A third brother, Samuel, was a minor and therefore not on the deed.  It is speculative, but likely, that this record was for our James Skaggs.  The French and Indian War came to western Maryland in 1755 when the Indians attacked and in response the governor built nearby Fort Frederick.  The following record shows a James Scaggs served with Capt. Dagworthy at Ft. Frederick:
Scaggs, James, Pr. Capt. Dagworthy's co. O. 9, 1757 to Ja. 22, 1759. Deserted.
History of Frederick County, Maryland, Volume 1
by Thomas John Chew Williams, Folger McKinsey
p. 668.
It’s part of the historical record that much of the colonial frontier was evacuated to the Carolinas after the Draper’s Meadows Massacre and Braddock’s Defeat.  Archibald Thompson writes in his diary more than once that he currently was in North Carolina and that after Braddock’s Defeat the New River settlements were “broken up.”  It's speculative, but I currently assume James Scaggs was part of this evacuation which included parts of western Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania.
1760 June 11 William Field, his Account for his Waggon impressed at the same time and by the same person as the preceeding Waggon, and discharged as per James Skegg's Oath the 9th January, 58 Days at £5 per day, £290, allowed: One Horse lost valued at £50 which the Committee take no Notice of, also 13 Bushels of Corn charged for his Horses and neither certified or attested which they disallow. 
The Colonial Records of South CarolinaThe Journal of the Commons House of AssemblyOctober 6, 1757-January 24, 1761Terry W. Lipscomb, EditorPublished by the South Carolina Department of Archives and HistoryLibrary of Congress Catalog Card Number: 51-62239ISBN: 1-880067-28-5
The following land entries from Halifax County, Virginia c. 1766 put James Scaggs (husband of Susanna, given his signature mark the "funny E" that Ida Lancaster identified with this James) in Halifax during the mid-1760s:
"Entry record book, 1737-1770—land entries in the present Virginia counties of Halifax, Pittsylvania, Henry, Franklin and Patrick," by Marian Dodson:
On p. 303: Apparently the date was 1766, James Skaggs 400 acres on Shooting Cr. Beg. at a red Oak mark't E (the funny E that James always signed with) S Th.e up and down on both sides.
Same p.: Apparently the date was 1766, and maybe 26th of Oct., James Skaggs 400 ac on Runnet bag Cr. beg. at the Clift, Th.e up on both sides. 
Same p.: James Skaggs 400 ac on the So. fork of Smiths Rr. Beg. at Bellows Lower Line Th.e down on both Sides & up the So. Side for Qty.Then on p. 308: Abraham Keeney 400 Ac adj.g James Skagg's Back Line Th.e along his Lines & off. 
Then on p. 311: Also 400 Ac on Smiths River against Jas. Skaggs
The following deeds indicate James was in the New River area of Virginia by 1769:
1769 Apr. 26 Chronicles of the Scotch-Irish Settlement in Virginia Extracted from the Original Court Records of Augusta County 1745-1800Deed Book No. 16.Page 49JAMES ( ) SCAGGS (SKEGGS), Sr., and RACHEL ( ) to JAMES SCAGGS, Jr., £100, 104 acres patented to Samuel Ratlive 22d August, 1753, and conveyed to JAMES, Sr., on Meadow Creek, a branch of New River. Teste: William Preston, Richard Whitt, James ( ) Skggs, John ( ) Skggs, Is. Christian, James Buchanan, W. Ingles.
The James Skggs who witnessed the above deed from James Sr. to James Jr. was likely the James Scaggs married to Susanna.
1778 Sept. 13, James Skaggs, £128, 100 acres to Albertus Bright on South Side Woods River below mouth of Little River
1782 Aug. 10, James Skaggs and wife Susannah received from Albert Bright 995 acres on Holston River and 100 acres south side Woods or New River below mouth of Little River
1782 Aug. 21, James Skaggs 100 acres to on South Side Woods River below mouth of Little River
The 1778 and 1782 records above are for the same transaction, a sale of 100 acres on South Side Woods River to Albertus Bright.  During the Revolutionary War land sales still occurred but the deeds were not recorded until 1782 after the outcome of the war was basically settled.  It appears this sale actually occurred September 13, 1778 but was recorded August 21, 1782.  This is important because, if true, it places James and Susanna Scaggs in the New River area of Virginia in 1778.  This will be important information later when discussing 4. James C. Skaggs.

1782 Nov. 5, James Skaggs witness will of William Ingles, Montgomery Co.
1785 May 3, James Skaggs and wife Susannah to James McCorkel, £330 120 acres both sides of New River
1786 Aug. 22, James Skaggs to Richard Whitt, £100 100 acres Old Ferry Place- West side bank of New River
1787 Apr. 3, James Skaggs to Andrew Cassiday, £30 30 acres
1787 Apr. 3, James Skaggs and wife Susannah to Hezekiah Whitt, £11 50 acres a branch of New River
1787 Apr. 3, James Skaggs and wife Susannah to John Ingels, £30 175 acres on west side of New River
1787 Apr. 3, James Skaggs and wife Susannah to Conrad Wall, £200 271 acres on North side of New River
1787 May Deed Book A, page 193, Grantor James Skaggs to Richard Whitt, £100 100 acres Montgomery County Virginia
1787 Apr. Deed Book A, page 426, Grantor James Skaggs to Hezekiah Whitt Montgomery County Virginia
Here it looks like James and Susanna were selling out of the New River area of Virginia.  Later they appear in eastern Tennessee (then North Carolina) as described by Ida Lancaster in Skaggs Tangled Roots, Vol. 2:
The state of North Carolina granted a land patent to one Thomas Flippen on Sept. 20, 1787. Feb. 10, 1789 Fleppen sold 200 acres to James Scraggs. The deed was not registered until 1792. The date the deed was registered, is probably why most sources state 1792 as the date of purchase, when actually 1789 was the date of purchase. It was not uncommon for one to hold a deed for a period of time before it was ever registered.
1791-1795 James and Susanna were listed as members of the Richland Baptist Church in Grainger County, Tennessee
Knox Co., Tenn., Land Records, Book E, vol. 2, p. 106: Joseph Beard to James Skaggs, Oct. 19, 1798. Reg. June 7, 1799, 640 acres North side of Clinch River, Grainger County for $500. Witnesses: John Higgins, Ely Skaggs.
1803 General Index to Claiborne Co., Tennessee Book of Records, Vol. 1, 1801-1825 Extracted from W.P.A. Records by Grace Hall Upshaw Grantor: Adair, John; Grantee: James Scaggs; Instrument: deed; Date: 1803; Book/Page: H-154; Consideration: $300
James shows up in Warren County, Kentucky for the 1810 census and then his will is filed there in 1814:
1810 census Warren Co., Kentucky; James, Susanna, two sons (James Jr. and Abraham) and one slave are in the same household; sons Joseph and Daniel have their own households
1814 Will Book B, 1814-1823, Warren County, Kentucky, p. 3.; SKAGGS, James. Will. Sons, Abraham, Joseph, Daniel. Executors, sons Daniel and Joseph. Dated July 21, 1813. Wit. Wm. Harris, Samuel Duff, Robert Duffln Recorded July Court 1814
So James died in Warren County, Kentucky sometime between July 21, 1813, when his will was dated, and July 1814 when the will was probated.  Some Skaggs researchers have listed James' wife as Rachel Susanna Skaggs.  The analysis of James Skaggs research to date shows that Rachel Skaggs and Susanna Skaggs are two different women, wives to two different James Skaggs.  Also, according to a comment posted on this site, Susanna Skaggs' great-granddaughter Eva Boone Myers Pool believed that Susanna's maiden name was Moredock and the Skaggs' were from Wales.


  1. I am confused. Was it this James Skaggs or the Longhunter James Skaggs who owned land on the New River/Little River and operated the Skaggs Ferry in the 1770's and 80's ?

    1. Both James/Susanna and James/Rachel were in New River in the 1770s. James/Rachel were parents of the Longhunters, so James Jr. the Longhunter was in New River also until he settled Skaggs Station in Kentucky.

      I'm not sure which of these James operated the Skaggs Ferry. If someone can locate the properties on these deeds they could determine who owned and operated the Ferry.

  2. Thanks. Working on it.....

  3. Based upon the above land sales by James/Susanna Skaggs on the Little/New river from 1785,1786,and 1787 that is described in the deed description as part of (the old ferry place/tract)and the documented evidence that James Jr. and wife Mary Skaggs relocated to Jefferson Co. KY in 1781, can we reasonably assume that James/Susanna Skaggs operated the Skaggs Ferry ?

    1. Yes, I think so, unless that land was deeded to James/Susanna by someone like James/Rachel or James Jr./Mary. Remember, the land is described as "part of the OLD ferry place." A previous James Skaggs owner may have actually run the ferry.

  4. I am looking for information about Susannah Skaggs that was married to Blackburn Akers. I do know that she was not the daughter of James Skaggs the father of Long hunter James Skaggs jr. Thanks and blessings

    1. I think the Susannah Skaggs who married Blackburn Akers was daughter of this James Scaggs and Susanna who sold out in Virginia in 1787 and moved to Tennessee and Kentucky. No proof, just the right folks in the right place at the right time. Someone out there on the Internet may have proof.


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