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A memoir written about 1920 by Ernest Greenwood Maddox about the Maddox family, stated that William was Irish and his wife, Priscilla Boswell, Dutch. It also said that they settled in Virginia, moved to Indiana and about 1820 to Kentucky.  So far, we cannot connect the Morelands to Ireland or the Boswells to Holland.  And they never moved to Indiana, though connected families did.

Additional information was received from  Julia Mortenson.   In her search for the Moreland family she found a  strong connection to Trimble County Kentucky and Shenandoah County VA.   Those counties have records that make a connecting thread. For instance, William had a grandson Franklin Moreland whose Trimble county marriage license showed he resided in VA and his father was born in Maryland. When Julia searched the net she found Rob Moreland’s web site of Morelands from Maryland. The original website connection is lost, but Rob has a will of WIlliam Moreland that is listed on the Rootsweb under Charles County Maryland.  I got there by a search.  I suggest trying that as addresses seem to change too often to keep current.  

In Charles County Maryland records she found William, son of Walter and Tabitha Dent. One of William’s sons (In Trimble County Kentucky) was John D. Moreland. D, possibly for Dent. William's sister, Sarah Moreland wed  John Hambaugh.  This John Hambaugh  and Daniel Trout who married one of William's oldest daughter and moved to Trimble County, witnessed a Shenandoah deed.  And very recently Julia found that John Hambaugh had a 1787 lease on land in Shenandoah County VA.  It actually reads John Hambaugh, etc.  could William and Priscilla be the etc? 

  • 135 acres in Shenandoah County, made by George Murray, 14 September 1787; leased to John Hambaugh, etc., 6 October 1787  1 page    from
  • A Guide to the Fairfax Family Northern Neck Proprietary Papers, 1688-1810 Colletion in the Library of Virginia Accession Number 24062

**** So on to the story, as we know it about William Moreland.

William Moreland was born about 1765 in Charles County, Maryland . His parents were Walter Moreland and Tabitha Dent. William Moreland and Priscilla Boswell  probably wed in Charles County about 1787/8.

William’s father Walter Moreland died in 1787 and William inherited 3 slaves, one of them was named Ben.  He will show up again later in this story. Walter's will was dated Nov. 13, 1787 and probated Jan 2 1788 in Prince George’s Ct  Maryland.  His mother inherited the bulk of the estate. In 1790 Tabitha Moreland was head of household in Prince George’s County which is just to the north of Charles County.

The Head of Families Maryland 1790 list two William Moreland in Charles County Maryland. I believe ours was the one  with 1 male, 3 females and 6 slaves. That would have been our William, his wife, first child, Anna and possible a 2nd daughter who did not survive.

There is record of a William Moreland being a bondsman on marriages in Shenandoah County, Virginia. It is likely they moved from Charles County to Shenandoah County between 1793 and 1795. Shenandoah County is on the upper northwest edge of Virginia.

The known children  of William and Priscilla Moreland, according to the Ernest G. Maddox memoir were;
1. Anna Moreland born September 1, 1788 married Daniel Trout. She died February 19 1847 and is buried with her husband in the Moffett Cemetery in Milton, Trimble County, Kentucky
2. Martha Moreland , born Sept 3, 1790 who married George Washington Floyd. She died Feb. 21, 1871 in Trimble Ct. KY and is buried in the Floyd CemeteryHer tombstone gives her birth and death date.  She was named in her father's will, as Martha Floyd in 1820 Oldham County Ky Will Book 1, page 70.
3. William Moreland born August 12, 1793 married Margaret Ott. He died April 4, 1863 in Woodstock, Shenandoah County, Virginia.
4. Elizabeth "Betsey" Moreland born 1798 in Virginia married William Maddox. By 1840 they were in Trimble County.
5. John D. "Jackey" Moreland born March 6, 1796 in Virginia. His married 3 times.  First to Seany Moreland, from an unrelated family in 1815.  She died when his first daughter was born.  Then he married Mary "Polly" McGannon in 1817 in Gallatin County, Kentucky They had 8 children  Polly died in 1857.  She was buried in the Moreland Cemetery on Luckett Lane. Finally, in 1858 he wed Elizabeth C. Calloway who outlived him by more than 25 years.  she died in 1904 and is buried at the Corn Creek Baptist Cemetery. 
 Jack Moreland died May 1, 1876 in Trimble County Kentucky and is buried on the Hampton Farm, Luckett Lane with Polly.
6. Walter A. Moreland born June 1800 in Virginia married 1st 1822 to Kitty Floyd by whom he had 5 children, 2nd 1832 to Lucinda Duncan in Oldham county KY, and 3rd Jane Cox Suddith on November 20, 1841 in Trimble County. He died there February 3, 1855 and is also buried on the Hampton Farm.

The 1810 Shenendoah County Virginia Census list for William Moreland:
2 males 10-15 (Jack & Walter)
1 male 45 and older (William)
1 female 10-16 (Elizabeth)
1 female 16 – 25 (Martha)
  5 slaves
No Priscilla.  She died between June 1800, the birth of Walter and the 1810 census.   Anna has already married Daniel Trout.  They were living with his parents in the county and son William was already on his own. 

There are numerous Tax Records for William MorelandWilliam Moreland is on the 1800 Virginia Tax List, Shenandoah County, page 13.  this tax was for private property not real estate. He is listed as a Constable, with 2 blacks over 16 years of age and 5 horses, 1 ordinary license, and he paid $.48.

  Shenandoah Land Tax, from microfilm at the Shenandoah county, VA Library: I do not know why tax was shown every other year, there were taxes owed every year.
1.  1795 William Moreland 200 acres
2.  1797 William Moreland    200 acres
3.  1799 William Moreland    200 acres
4.  1800 William Moreland  has 3 sets listed: 150 acres, 200 acres, 60 acres
5.  1802 William Moreland all 3 sets listed
6.  1803 William Moreland all 3 sets listed
7.  1804 William Moreland all 3 sets listed
   nothing in 1805, and then I jumped as I was running out of time.
8.  1809 William Moreland slightly different 3 sets; 154 acres, 200 acres, 100 acres
9.  1812 Willaim Moreland lists the last 3 sets and it reads "Gooney Run, where he lives"  for each one.   
  The 3 sets must have been close or next to each other. That was a total of 454 acres. His father had died in 1787 and William inherited 3 slaves. His mother inherited the bulk      of the estate, but there must have been some money to pass on so that he had a starting nest egg. In five years he was able to expand his holdings and then again in 7-9 years.
10. The Shenandoah Land Tax from 1814B reads " Moreland, William      Kentucky      lease for lives"

Which tells us that William Moreland was already in Kentucky and that his property had been leased - but to whom?  His son William Moreland, who we  believe stayed in Shenandoah with his bride, Margaret (Peggy) Ott.  He activity bought and sold real estate in the county.  but who else.  "lives implies more than one".  The lease could have  provided our William Moreland with the resources needed to purchase land in Kentucky, which he did.

The "Lease for lives" led us into a study of how land was purchased, rented, leased, etc in the days when the land was just being made available.  Lord Fairfax was a  huge investor in western Virginia, ie the Northern Neck Proprietary or the Fairfax Grant.  It consisted of nearly 5 million acres.  A Guide to the  Fairfax Family Northern neck Proprietary Papers, 1688-1810 held in the Library of Virginia.  Julia found with in the Lord Fairfax Lease Records, noted above.  Perhaps that was the reason William Moreland moved his family to Shenandoah County.

The county just south of Charles in Maryland  is St. Mary’s. In the History of St. Mary’s County by Hammutt on page 93 is a chapter on Kentucky Ken. This chapter   states that "Between 1790 and 1810 the population of St. Mary’s County decreased.  A large portion can be attributed to the westward  migration to the North Central    Kentucky counties. Land was offered as a means to promote settlement of the frontier. Some had lost property in the war, some could not pay bonds " so they took advantage    of this offer.  Moreland stopped in Virginia, but eventually went on to Kentucky where others from Charles County Maryland had settled.

William Moreland purchased land in Henry County in the fall of 1812.  We think William had moved there by that time with most of his family. He is found on the Henry County 1813 Tax lists with 415 acres and again 1814, where it specifies his land is on the Ohio river.  We believe it was in the area that became Trimble county, specifically on a bluff along the road now called Luckett Lane.  There was a small cemetery there, but on a recent visit, we could not find it.

Apparently, he had purchased land that was part of a Clark Land Grant and became embroiled in a National Supreme Court case over land rights.  It is a really really long document.  The good part about it is that it pin points the location of  the 400+acres.  The case is dated Jan 1833. William Moreland had died and it was his children who had to deal with it.  The document use to be found at  https://bulk.resource.org/courts.gov/c/US/32/32.US.171.html. That is no longer available, but maybe the numbers will help you find it.
The Moreland name can be found in four different counties of Kentucky. However, they could have stayed in the same spot and changed counties as the new ones were formed. Shelby County was formed in 1792. From Shelby, Henry County was formed in 1798. Oldham County was formed from Henry, Shelby, and Jefferson Counties. Finally, Trimble County was formed in 1836 from Henry, and Oldham and Gallatin.

The Moreland family was early members of the Corn Creek Church. It is on the Bedford Milton Turnpike and was probably the main road once. It has been bypassed now by Rt. 421.The church cemetery is the final resting-place of some Moreland descendants. We went to the end of Luckett Lane but could find the Hampton Farm cemetery. We believe it has been covered over with new home drives and fences.

On 9/11/1820  William Moreland  wrote his will in Henry County, but it was probated by Oldham County Kentucky Will Book, 10/16/1826.  His son Walter A appeared before the court on Sept 18, 1826 and the will was acknowledge and Walter A. was accepted as Executor.

 He lists his children Walter A., John D. William, Anna B. Trout, Martha Floyd , Elizabeth B. Maddox and Granddaughter Lucinda, daughter of John D. but no wife.  He must have not remarried after Priscilla died.  He also left instructions for his slave Ben to be freed.



If you know the answer please CONTACT US

    1. When did he marry Priscilla?

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